Okay, I've got it. Crystal clear, thanks to a few slaps in the face on AntiPinoy.com and the brutal but perceptive views of The Judge.
Here's my blatantly unstatistical take on things, generalizations so gross that they should be used for nothing other than make you think.
Filipinos come in three basic styles: (1) The Vain, (2) The Worker, (3) The Modern Man.
This is an ego-bound person of little consideration for others. It is his way or the highway and money is his prime motivation. Civic duty means little, even if the Vain holds public office; self-gain is what is important, not the people's well-being. We often think of this as a class of oligarchs, who, indeed often fit the picture. But they have already made big money, that's all. The Vain belongs to a much broader class of Filipino and can even be found on common blog sites. You can identify them by their resistance to ideas from others, protecting their home turf as if they were some Ampatuan on a verbal binge. They collect into clans for comfort. In addition to being closed to opposing ideas, they are vengeful. Those on line use name-calling or other deceits to try to demolish anyone who would have the gall to oppose their thinking. Those on land occasionally reach for a gun. If these on-line people had money, they would be ego-bound oligarchs too, although they would mightily contest this observation. You see . . . their MOTIVATION is the same. Self protection, self build up, tearing down the perceived competition. Win, even if the cost is a poorer Philippines.
This is a more innocent and committed soul. By innocent, I mean he knows he has no power to leverage, but must feed his family, so he crawls out of bed every day to work the fields, clean the highways, pedal his tricycle, man the call center, or carry the bricks. He laughs easily, especially at the shortcomings of his friends or co-workers, but has a serious edge to what he does. Feeding the family with no assured future is serious business. He may cheat a little around the edges, for, after all, his life is full of drudgery and you grab ease where you can. But he is fundamentally a good man. He is the heart and soul of the nation.
The Modern Man
I haven't really met very many of them, but I think there may be quite a few around. Or they are at least developing, in other countries, perhaps, or through the wisdoms to be gained on the internet. The Man is driven by achievement and fair play; competition, skill, honesty, confidence and consideration of others are the hallmarks of this Filipino. He is a principled person, not afraid of change, and includes kindness toward others among his principles. The Man is often a woman. He is the future of the nation.
Where do you put yourself?
C'mon, be honest now.