The riddle of right and wrong in the Philippines

You will often come across conflict online where the assumption is that your being negative about the Philippines when you start discussing corruption, crab mentality, pollution etc. etc. People become nationalistic with “Pinoy pride” which is fine except its not based on anything but pride. For example if I talk about garbage in the rivers its because I want it to be fixed not ignored. I can say Argao beach is stony and clean but in Minglanilla I find the beach scattered with garbage either washed up on the tide or being done by the cottages along the beach.

Now for me I am an engineer and well aware that little clunking noises or a fan blade starting to whirl with a rubbing sound that something is going to break and cause more damage. A bit of grease or oil may be the only things needed to keep things running smoothly again but what if I switched on some headphones and just ignored the problem? In one of the plants it controls specific gases if released to the atmosphere the death rate would be over 100,000 people in 30 minutes. There is respirator training but if you here the alarm even the instructor is aware the chance of you getting suited is so slim that you might as well count yourself dead. Now I have worked in critical environments and its why I am clinical about things when they are wrong. A few of the things over the years that people around me have been involved in due to company failings on safety procedures or cutting costs involved 1 person being microwaved inside a radar station, 1 not shutting off electrics on sub station control which resulted after someone switched it back on not knowing it was under maintenance a fireball taking the skin off the guys arms,chest,face and top of his head leaving him lucky to survive and 6 months on hospital. Another 2 were ladder accidents one involved it not being footed it slipped and as he fell the ladder caught his ankle and snapped it in half, less than a couple of mm is what separated life and death because if it had gone a little bit further he would have bled to death as it split his artery. The other involved a chainsaw at the top of a ladder that a simple slip caused the saw to cut halfway through his thigh and he also nearly died..

So I may sound “critical” but rubbish in the rivers and streets causes dengue, human waste in the rivers and other water ways results in typhoid and other diseases. The madness is that most of these things are easy to fix if everyone played their part. I watched yesterday as someone threw rubbish in a neighbouring lot laughing. At the same time have they thought about what happens to all that rubbish they are tipping? The rats and the diseases they carry? mosquitos, cockroaches etc. etc. I see the Philippines with outside eyes and I can see many things that are wrong that can be fixed but it involves people to stop with fake pride and actually take some positive action. I have a family here and I don’t want them living amongst other peoples filth which in most cases seems to be laziness when it comes to disposal and proper management.

I know I sound a bit annoyed and to the general reader its not aimed at you its aimed at the people that email me for telling the truth. I am not anti Philippines I am more pro development of the country than anything else. Ignorance is a poor substitute for solutions and this is where the problems lie. It may not be important what I think if others can’t learn to adapt and change. Hiding away in a sub division may sound the right solution today but the problems are tied to education and infrastructure. If the water becomes diseased everyone is affected, if the power grid fails unless you have a generator yours is also going off, there is no getting away from the fact these are problems on a national scale but many have local solutions.