Philippines Poverty Is It Forever?

Bit of a warning for the next few posts as they are things that I have been pondering on as well as researching heavily. The poverty in the Philippines I have to question these days is it forever?

The same reasons being that as Africa that corruption keeps everything in its place. Keeps the rich, rich and the poor locked in poverty. But its a lot more complex than some incompetent Government as they are very competent when it comes to making money for themselves. This feeds capitalism and corporations pretty well as it gets round a lot of issues such as environment and people not wanting resources mined or extracted. Mindanao conflict for example is about a Muslim homeland I hear yet the land is full of natural resources worth billions. War conflicts mean people leaving, people who leave may lose the right to the land they occupied which is the whole point of driving people off the land. Best example of this outside of the Philippines is Zimbabwe that has pretty much done it to anything worth keeping. The Philippines has cartels in control of everything in the Philippines and although most people talk of “Spanish” influence and it being the cause of the unfair land distribution nobody ever seems to mention the Chinese yet it seems more up to date as well as typically Chinese in the way things are. The malls of fake goods on the border between China and Hong Kong are an example with guards looking for cameras as they are supposed to be shut down yet supported by the government yet you can buy shipping container loads of fake items there if you want them. A typical example of smiling and shaking your hand with one hand while a dagger stabs you in the back with the other.

This is why I ponder if the Philippines will never change, you look at any of the big names here in business or government you’ll find Chinese links all over them. Jollibee pushed as a Filipino restaurant for example yet the owner is Chinoy not Pinoy as nationalism works pretty well in the Philippines so why not wave the flag to promote business. Problem is the current administration and last in the Philippines are both Chinoy’s and strong links to China looking to open up trade. Or should it be more than likely open up the trade for the rich into China while the average Filipino will lose more as businesses and debt of the country increases as imports open up for Chinese goods leaving a lot of the quality Filipino products struggling to stay afloat in an ever increasing market as they will be competing directly with China. People forget that for anyone who isn’t rich in the Philippines the next good market for income is medium to small businesses these are going to decline drastically when this happens in the Philippines increasing poverty.

But what about the OFW’s? your right what about those who go to other countries and finally get citizenship, lets take the UK for example free medical care, free dental care and pretty much guaranteed to be taken care of in old age. Why the hell would they want to come back to the Philippines where they get sick and can either burn their live savings to feed a Corporation hospital or die? Maybe some will come back but I haven’t seen many in my time I have been here they are all either visiting or awaiting contract renewals. The rest are abroad and where possible trying to get more family out of the country, now I can understand the maids, nanny’s and many of the other low skilled people coming back as they may not get the option to stay abroad. At the same time what about the doctors, specialist nurses, university lecturers and other specialists ? If anything there is a giant brain drain going on in the country and this is going to increase poverty over time as simply there are less and less capable people available in specialist fields. Job vacancies are there but you end up with someone with 1 – 2 years experience replacing someone with 10 – 20 years experience the gaps are huge in knowledge and ability. This is no doubt affecting the next level of students in many things as simply the lecturers they now receive are not of the same calibre that they could have had 15 years ago.

But moving on from that the education system is also bizarre as I cannot understand the point of finishing school to study as a nurse then getting abroad to study as a nurse so that they are brought up to a standard that is recognised. Why not? maybe its just me but wouldn’t it make more sense for the colleges and schools of nursing to be teaching to an acceptable standard in the first place? Just seems a lot of people who really cant afford to educate kids in the first place being robbed of what money they have when the colleges should be doing more to provide a “service” rather than an arrogance of being one of the best in the country. Which is fine but has anyone met a nurse who plans to work and stay in this country?

Key to any development is always education and simply the Philippines generally ignores most of its day to day problems never mind poverty. Infrastructure is still bad yet we are seeing more and more housing developments going up without supported water,drainage,sanitation,electricity etc. Why? well as we see in the election campaign and the billboards everywhere the tie between politics and corporation strikes again. Selling homes to people without any real layouts,planning or long-term thoughts doesn’t really matter as the saying goes as “its not near me!”. I think that’s pretty much it when the housing market collapses which it will due to excess developments I doubt you will see the Ayala housing group or other big corporations suffer it will be the people who bought into a fake dream. Increasing poverty as many of these people bought into the condo markets for retirement, not in a sense of living in but either buying to rent or planning on selling in 3 – 5 years for that guaranteed profit all the sales people talk about!

In reality the Philippines is locked in poverty and being held there on purpose. The rich don’t want to give it up and nobody is going to stop them as they give foreign nations (companies) what they want. Same way Libya and most of Africa operates, in reality your seeing Philippines PLC in the sense everyone has a share yet its the directors that make all the decisions and take the high salaries win or lose while the guy at the bottom loses. This is why things aren’t changing and I can’t see things changing in the Philippines.