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Dec 05th
Home Sections Politics Is There Hope for the "Country of Contradictions?"
Is There Hope for the "Country of Contradictions?" PDF Print E-mail
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Sections - Politics
Sunday, 15 April 2007 23:56


A reader from Chicago, Illinois, sent in this question about an earlier article, The Philippines: A Country of Contradictions (As Updated):


Wit and humor are necessary, but we need also something uplifting. Just a thought ... Do you think that the likes of Napoleon Hill and John Maxwell and Zig Ziglar could ever be applied to the Philippine context? Or are we doomed to be forever mired in contradictions without solutions? -- Arnold DV

T hank you, ArnoldDV of Chicago, for your very-provocative question. The best reward for writers like me is when readers like you, Arnold, react with such exceptionally-good feedback. Your question will uplift not only our online discussion but also the vision and direction for our community and people back in the homeland.

1.0       Re: A Country of Contradictions. Perhaps the likes of Napoleon Hill, John C. Maxwell and Zig Ziglar and their ideas could be applied to the Philippine situation. But I am sure that there are hundreds, if not thousands, among the more-than 85-million Filipinos who have similar ideas like Hill, Maxwell, Ziglar and Company. But their Filipino counterparts are not just given the chance to do their thing by the Philippine Establishment and Vested Interests (PEVI).

             1.1      I know of quite a few Filipinos and Filipino Americans who can give Napoleon Hill a run for his money  (pun intended) and do a Filipino version of his book, "Think and Grow Rich." I think that there have been efforts in the Philippines to study also the "secrets of great leaders," as Mr. Hill has done. Perhaps what the Filipino people should do is to emulate Napoleon Hill in a more-organized manner and do also a study on the philosophy and commonality of the country's most-successful people. Perhaps the lessons derived from the said study can serve to inspire the youth of the homeland and in the various Overseas-Filipino communities.

             1.2      Perhaps the PEVI should contract the INJOY Group, which John C. Maxwell founded, to do seminars on leadership. Perhaps the INJOY Group can likewise help Filipino leaders maximize their personal and leadership potential. But I am afraid that most Filipino national leaders would prefer not John Maxwell (assuming that they have heard of him) but Maxwell House coffee and injoy, oops, enjoy (pun intended again) the brew up to the last drop.

                         1.2.1   But on a serious note, then President Ferdinand E. Marcos thought of establishing the so-called "Development Academy of the Philippines (DAP)." The DAP conducted seminars for Filipino government officials, including mayors and other municipal officials, so that they could be taught the principles of management, running knowledge of Philippine laws such as the Administrative Code, financial management, audit, accountability and transparency and other related subjects.

                         1.2.2   I am not an apologist for the Marcos Administration, as I was a political follower of then opposition leader, Doy Laurel, and his UNIDO. But the DAP was one of the best achievements of President Marcos. But when Mr. Marcos was deposed, his successor, Corazon Cojuangco-Aquino, ordered that the DAP be abolished. It seemed that the country's leaders at that time were preoccupied with erasing anything that was connected with Mr. Marcos. And after I realized that Mrs. Aquino deviated from the vision of Ninoy Aquino, I became a "Sorry Crusader," instead of the "Cory Crusader" that I was during the Presidential snap election of February 1986. Tita Cory and Company not only abolished the DAP and also ended other programs like the Population Control Commission (POPCOM), which President Marcos established to check the abnormally-high birth rates of the country.

             1.3      Perhaps Mrs. Aquino and Company should have applied the Zig Ziglar principles instead of closing down the various Marcos-led initiatives like the DAP and the POPCOM. What the Aquino Dispensation ought to have done was to enhance the performance of the programs that President Marcos established. Perhaps our people now should focus on the teachings of Zig Ziglar, the performance-enhancement guru, so that we can build not only better entities and business companies but also Philippine society by building first better people, bureaucrats and employees.  

                        1.3.1   The ideas of Zig Ziglar are not really unique. In my home region of Bicolandia alone, we could have contributed a lot towards the building of a Better Philippines had the PEVI allowed some of our "better Bicolnons" to help solve the problems of the nation. The Bicol Region had and continues to have performers like Raul Roco and others similar to him in education, intellect and training. And speaking of Zig Ziglar, we had Mrs. Tecla San Andres Ziga of Camarines Sur and Albay. Mrs. Ziga, a lawyer who was elected as a senator of the Philippines, was perhaps the most-intelligent and most-able woman leader of Bicolandia. She was that good and she could have edged out Zig Ziglar when it came to performance. I am sure that there are hundreds of up-and-coming Raul Rocos and Tecla Zigas in our region and if their services are tapped by the PEVI, they can all help build a better society. And if Bicol Region can contribute a lot, imagine what the 12 other regions in the Philippines can do as a nation?

In conclusion, I say: "Yes, there is hope for the Philippines and Filipinos." Because for the first time in its history, the homeland now has a vibrant and economically-viable middle class. The only problem with it is that Overseas Filipinos, who compose essentially the middle class, are outside the country. Still the Overseas-Filipino remittances keep the country afloat. And the remittances' multiplier effects reach even the countryside, as the 11-million (and counting) Overseas Filipinos are sharing their wealth and experience with their kin, close friends and townmates. Eventually many predict that Overseas Filipinos will go home and fight for reforms not only in electoral contests but also in shaping up the country's economy so that it becomes, like the government, of the people, for the people and by the people. # # #

I wrote actually an essay that I distributed during the Rizal Day in Detroit, MI, on Dec. 13, 2003. The essay was how the Overseas Filipinos, especially Filipino Americans, could become the modern-day versions of Jose Rizal and move for peaceful reforms in the homeland. I believe that the Chicago-based publication of Bart S. G. Tubalinal, Jr., printed that piece. The of New York published it also but I am not sure if people can still access it online.

But to achieve the needed reforms in the Philippines, Overseas Filipinos, especially their writers, have to write about the needed changes and do them. We have to nag -- if needed -- our Filipino leaders with the ATIC slogan. (ATIC, as I coined, means accountability, transparency, integrity and credibility.) And we have to remind our people that instead of gossiping if the President has cancer of the uterus or the liver, that they should instead talk of ways and means of eradicating the social cancer that continues to afflict many of our lay and even religious leaders. # # #

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Last Updated on Saturday, 17 December 2011 09:46

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