I think, for a change, state should redirect its focus at self reliance. Yes, like, state should have a direct hand at industrialization where there is much need if not a void.
Adolf Hitler, reconciling capitalism with socialism, employed it. President Ferdinand E. Marcos also made a push at there. No, it is not dictatorship I am selling. They are the good sides in them viewed from national standpoint that I am saying. Aside from self reliance, industrialization by the state where there is none, also meant more employment.
The idea of national self reliance is old. Filipino leaders in the past must have had it in mind. Like, without many infrastructures needed everywhere, they had Philippine National Construction Corporation [PNCC] for that. Today, with the private sector proliferating in there, the thing has naturally become a Burloloy [white elephant]. Whatever functions to justify its continued existence can easily be assumed by later-day agencies like, say, National Economic Development Autority [NEDA] and the Department of Public Works and Highways [DPWH].
They had National Power Corporation [NAPOCOR] and the National Waters and Sewerage Administration [NAWASA], that the private sectors under them today would like to take over. Ill-administered, top heavy and became financial burdens, these state-owned corporations are more in the side of burloloys that may be dissolved except for their barest function – Regulatory.
[In the world of ideologues, privatization is a lease of life to capitalism]
But back to self reliance. Let’s talk about fuels. Putting aside pretensions, the world went to wars for that. Nations invaded for that. Terrorism is rooted to that. The latest world economic crisis was caused by a domino that is rooted to that. Maybe, we Filipinos can pursue our needs for fuels without any thought of going into any war.
President Marcos, recognizing the very peculiar vital rule of fuels, created Philippine National Oil Company [PNOC] and PETRON. Aside from being a move towards self-reliance and stability, Petron also contributed to the coffers. I think, privatization of Petron, later, was some stupid monkey business. Because, the reasons behind their creation, unlike others, are becoming aggravating instead of receding as time goes on.
Self reliance. Surely every Philippine President that came and went had dreamed about it. The idea looks simple when it is not. Under the present circumstances the idea is in fact crazy.
Let’s talk of our Bio-fuels Law passed just a while ago. It created a big demand for Ethanol to fill but where are all the ethanol plants and the ethanol because there are none. So we import something that could easily be produced locally while saving on foreign currency reserves as well.
Let’s fantasize that government is putting up ten ethanol plants for a start. Imagine 10 ethanol plants where there is nothing! That will be sisiw [small timer]. Kayang-kaya, wholly owned by the state, or in partnership with other states and or in partnership with the private sector.
Perennial problem of troublesome informal settlers living in streets and gutters? Then, state can start relocating them to the sites where those industries are and where jobs and housing for them await there. That makes the practice of selling rights in relocation sites and coming back to the streets and gutters a thing of the past for them.
No, professional squatters does not mean professionals who live in squatter areas. The term applies to squatters who have already been relocated for the ump time so that it seems squatting getting relocated has become their means of living.
But Ethanol plants need farmers. Without farmers to supply the raw materials, mills are no better than scrap metals. Many of those small farmers today are in the streets and gutters than starving back home or living more miserably in farmlands! They have to be enticed back to the farms from the cities. Financial-agricultural assistance, mabigat but still kaya. Maybe the presently allocated billions [21 Billion a year] of pesos ‘cash transfer’, alms, palliative that does not solve the problem of poverty, should be cut and diverted to long range solutions.
But, most of all, farmers need motivation – stable and good price for their produce. That’s to sustain them and the system of production. That will also make many people in streets and gutters to pack-up and start moving back to the provinces. Yes, going home by themselves as they have moved into the cities by themselves !
But, to make farmers happy, State needs to elbow the Compradores aside. Or, leaving the traders as they are, to pose stiffest competition for them. State will end up getting its hands on trading of fuels, or fuel components, if not strongly dictating over the whole agricultural and agro-setup.
Laws will be needed. Everything and everyone that contributed to the deep quagmire that the nation is presently in will be rocked!
So, you see, as we go deeper to the bottom of the matter, it gets more and more complicated. The whole idea is what and why I call crazy. It’s like telling the majority of our lawmakers to tell themselves to go to hell, or to get lost! Present day Philippines is much a creation of the comprador class.
Ethanol, the big talk in the country in 2000, is something nobody is investing. Apparently the problem is about trade and not about production. A look at the situation of the sugar industry, and of the state of the country’s sugar mills, are enough to douse any enthusiasm for ethanol, I guess. Interested would-be-producers see no guarantee in trade. In short, private capital has sensed no money in there, or else they’re in there now.
Should not we just drift with everything and everyone to the edge? Maybe there is a miracle somewhere to snag the Filipinos for the better.
Still, I strongly recommend Stronghold Crusader by Firefly Studios for everybody or everyone running the state. Maybe they’ll learn a little of something from the game. And don’t forget to select Castle Builder – Build peacefully, with just the camels for company! There are big cats in the way, lest you forget.
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