JoeAm will be on family vacation for two weeks, returning in early May. He drops off this blog as a voluntary mission for readers, ala "Mission Impossible".
Here's the framing:
- The Philippines is an authoritarian society. Interpersonal rivalries are intense, a struggle to top or topple the opposition. The government is democratic but tends toward authoritarianism: laying down the law but enforcing it selectively, officious attitude in government offices, army and local government vigilante behavior, issuing dictates left and right with no open justice system for the people. Senators doling out millions in Christmas gifts as if it were THEIR money.
- Richard Javad Heydarian in his recent article "Why the Philippines Failed" makes a very clear point that the Philippines does not keep pace with other developing nations because it does not have a strong concept of "State" governance. This article is the beginning point for the discussion and is required reading for volunteers.
Here's the issue: How can the Philippines be both authoritarian and weak of State?
Here's the mission:
- Rationalize the apparent contradicition of authoritarianism and statelessness.
- Explain in clear terms what has to happen -- tangibly and practically achievable -- to move the Philippines forward to become of equal stature to Japan and South Korea as a core nation in Asia.
Whether and how you proceed is up to you.
This blog will self-destruct in two weeks . . .