Filipinos and happiness: why we need to be serious about it

There is enough evidence to suggest that Filipinos in general are preoccupied with the desire to be on a permanent state of euphoria or at least with being perceived to be a “happy-go-lucky” society no matter what circumstances they are in. Unfortunately, this national obsession with being “happy” or having a good time instead actually leads the Filipino people to a permanent state of misery because their pursuit of happiness is shallow and misguided.

The symbol of Filipino happiness

Because of our obsession with being perceived as a “happy-go-lucky” people, we unfortunately also come across as a people who do not take things too seriously even in times of crisis; which is why our social ills stay unresolved. In fact, Filipinos in general don’t even realize that our national psyche needs to be rehabilitated. Most Filipinos are of the belief that our corrupt public officials are solely to blame for the sad state of our nation. This is funny because the Filipino people are free to choose their public servants. And yet they prefer to choose someone incompetent — which is why they get the government they deserve.

The country remains Asia’s laggard perhaps partly because most Filipinos don’t have their priorities right. Most of us would rather pursue activities that cater to instant gratification because most of us want to be “masaya” all the time. We get instant gratification when we engage in activities that give us fleeting moments of happiness. Most often these are activities that are not well thought through and may even be impulsive. It could also involve being on a fiesta or celebratory mode more often than necessary even when we don’t deserve it. This also includes not participating in the running of the country and letting our public servants wreak havoc using public funds. Instead of being serious and more assertive about national issues, we dismiss topics pertaining to politics as something that we cannot do anything about or is none of our business.

Because Filipinos love a good time more than anything else, we don’t bother learning a new skill on our spare time. Most Filipinos don’t like the idea of working harder to elevate our status to one of being among the first-class nations in the world; we would rather wait for someone to do it for us. Unfortunately, because our society has become anti-intellectual, the intellectuals are driven to leave the country. The brain drain reduces our chances of competing with other nations whose aim is to be the best at what they do and excel at every endeavor.

It follows that since most Filipinos in general would rather have a good time than work hard, it is no surprise that they also love riding on the success of other Filipinos in the entertainment industry where fame and fortune carry away singers, actors, and even sportsmen — boxers in particular. It’s not that there is anything wrong with being happy for someone who achieves international recognition, it’s just that Filipinos tend to take it to the extreme and only idolize those who appear on TV and films due to their fame rather than those who work hard to excel in science and technology – those who can actually help elevate the status of the nation.

Too much “pakikisama” can be bad for our society.

Our love for a good time more than serious and reflective time seems to be associated with a uniquely-Filipino flavor of collectivism — “pakikisama” in the vernacular. Boxing champion Manny Pacquiao for example, brings temporary joy and induce exaggerated Filipino pride among Filipinos simply by winning a boxing match held in an international arena. Those who do not feel the same level of “pride” when he wins are seen as being unpatriotic, killjoy or worse, “walang pakisama“. The following comment made in the AntiPinoy.com article Those Who Keep Saying “I am Proud to be a Filipino” When Manny Pacquiao Wins are Morons is a case in point:

Bakit hindi ninyo ba naramdamang “PROUD” kayo at may isang kababayan kayo na nanalo sa ibang lupain at pati hindi ninyo kalahi eh nasisiyahan at humahanga sa galing niya? So that means… naive at somewhat strange ang katwiran ninyo kung ganun! At dapat lang na may halong emosyon sa mga ganitong pangyayari…kung WALA manhid KA!Wala nga sa race yan..pero dahil sa Pinoy ka at Pinoy ang umaani ng tagumpay sa ngayon pagdating sa boxing bakit hindi natin mararamdaman ang pagmamalaki sa pamamagitan ng boxer na ito!

Those who see Pacquaio’s win as an individual achievement rather than a collective achievement also tended to be the same ones who are more concerned about the negative effects this national obsession with a boxing celebrity or any celebrity has on Philippine society. This concern is not without its merit since Filipinos also tend to idolize those with celebrity status and vote them in as public servants even if they are not qualified for public service and Manny Pacquiao having been voted into public office as Congressman is enough proof of this. Alarmingly, there are even some members of the Philippine public who are now supporting the idea of Pacquiao running for the Presidency one day.

It is not an exaggeration therefore to say that Filipinos who are labeled “killjoy” or “walang pakisama” are the same ones who are serious about the state of the nation and use their heads for critical analysis in most situations. Unfortunately, those who apply a critical mind in Philippine society are outnumbered by those who don’t, so the former ends up being bullied to submission or being helpless.

Too much good time can be bad for our society.

Most Filipinos would often say, “It’s better to see the glass half-full than half-empty.” But the more applicable proverbial expression to our society should be, “The glass is not half-full if it isn’t half-empty.” We can’t always pretend not to see the dark side of any given situation. Having an incompetent leader like President Noynoy Aquino for example, is a situation that has more dark side than bright side. If Filipinos continue to refuse to prepare for the worst case scenario, they might just get a rude shock one day upon realizing that they are already stuck between a rock and a hard place. Not that we are not yet stuck in a difficult situation; we already are, except some of us just don’t realize it yet or refuse to accept it and, worse, are not prepared for it.

There is this misconception among Filipinos that if people keep pointing at the facts and discussing the problems of our society, they are perceived as being unproductive or negative. Never mind that discussing our social ills could actually lead to the right solutions.

What is a healthier outlook in life then? Humans have different set of moods. Normal people have a baseline or set point of happiness. We bounce up and down from that baseline in response to short term events depending on the situation, like when we hear some bad news or good news. Most people normally return to their baseline after some time. Unfortunately, some of us think that we have to be above the normal baseline all the time to be considered to be a “happy” person, which is quite an impossible state to achieve because it means that in order to be “high” all the time, the natural tendency to be down after a high needs to be continuously overcome. And if we keep soaring higher, the longer the fall that is sure to come sooner or later.

If we prefer to constantly experience that “high” feeling, we also have to be constantly entertained by outside stimuli. This outside stimuli could come in the form of watching a spectacle on TV, the movies, being on the computer all day playing a video game, or being around a large gathering of family and friends having a party just to be entertained. In short, when our brain is being entertained all the time, we don’t have time to think or engage in self-reflection.

How do we sustain the baseline level of happiness? Being happy does not necessarily mean that we should always be in a gathering with friends having a ball or a party. Being happy does not necessarily mean that we should literally be laughing all the time or making jokes that make light of otherwise serious things. It would be more ideal to find happiness during our spare time doing some productive work that stimulates the imagination — like reading a good book or learning a new set of skills to keep our brains occupied and sharp. This sort of baseline happiness is more sustainable and healthier for the brain. It offers greater potential for monetary rewards, which can lead to being in a healthier mood for longer periods of time.

Caroline Hunt, a professor in psychology at the University of Sydney, Australia suggested that society would be better off if people backed away from their obsession with getting more happiness, because the activities to satisfy such an obsession is does more damage in the long-term. To quote what she said in an interview:

“There are a lot of misconceptions about what makes us happy, often involving unrealistic expectations of just how happy we could be. There’s a small industry suggesting what people should do to make themselves more happy but most of the time it would be more useful for people to accept that being unhappy or being in a state of melancholy some of the time can be OK. In fact it is part of being a human being.

In the book Against Happiness, author Eric Wilson emphasized that he finds it odd that sadness is seen as not a normal part of life but as a weakness, something to be eradicated.

“You should really embrace those dark parts of your life. They are natural. They are normal. It seems to me those darker sides of experience, those times when we are sad or sorrowful, we often learn things about ourselves that we would not learn had we simply remained content.”

Lack of substance leads to idiotic behavior

No wonder most Filipinos never learn from their mistakes. They never have time to reflect because they are preoccupied with having a good time. After reading the statement above, one cannot help but recall how some Filipinos did not show any sympathy after the deaths of eight Chinese tourists in the Mendoza hostage crisis. School girls and uniformed policemen posed for photos smiling and laughing near the hijacked bus of the scene of the crime and posted the same photos on social networking sites for all the world to see. It exhibits how our society has such an underdeveloped sense of compassion. We just want to have a good time all the time.

One cannot forget too how President Noynoy Aquino (P-Noy) was caught smiling like a dog during a press conference a day after the Mendoza hostage crisis in which eight Chinese tourists died. After being criticized for his smiling face, his only excuse was “… I have several expressions. I smile when I’m happy, I smile when I’m faced with a very absurd situation…” to be fair to P-Noy, he really was caught in a very absurd situation at the time. He probably felt that smiling would lighten up the situation. Unfortunately, it just made it worse.

Where did the concept of being happy start?

It’s been said that the pursuit of happiness started in the United States when the Declaration of Independence guaranteed every individual the right to “pursue happiness”. Since then pop psychology has advocated the notion that in order to live a meaningful life, people should be happy and to be happy, you should always be “positive”.

The concept gave rise to a lot of self-help books written by positive mental attitude gurus who tend to recommend that people see the bright side of things rather than the negative. You could say that the concept is a marketing executive’s dream coming true because advertising agencies can continue to sell more products to make people feel “happy” by creating a need.

Unfortunately, with Filipinos copying anything “in” in American society, Philippine society had embraced this concept without bothering to analyze if the same concept is applicable to us as a people. And because we are such bad copycats, we do not really think about the social impact of adapting a concept that works for other cultures but not for ours. The Presidential system is a classic example of a concept that seems to work fine for Americans but obviously not for Filipinos because of our personality based politics. But I digress…

Americans on their part, have an individualistic society, which means that they pursue their own happiness on individual terms. They acknowledge that what might make someone happy won’t necessarily make others happy. Pursuing intellectual stimulus for example can be gratifying for some while just playing video games all day will have the same effect on others. The long term effect or damage of either activity is debatable but it has been proven time and time again that intellectual pursuits which may seem like such a boring activity to those who prefer to play video games, will yield more positive results in the future for any individual.

Some societies celebrate the uniqueness of each individual and respect the choices each individual makes; this results in a more vibrant and innovative society. In short, you won’t really find Americans who force other fellow Americans to be happy when an American boxer wins boxing matches or label others unpatriotic if they don’t.

The drawback of selling happiness as the key to a meaningful life also gave rise to the use of medication in some parts of the world especially the US. Big pharmaceuticals in the United States jumped on the bandwagon of the self-help gurus and managed to enter the happiness market by selling happy pills or anti-depressants. At least the US has regulations that serve as check-and-balance on the euphoria industry. But this is already capitalism at its finest and luckily enough, Philippine society has not gone down that path due to Filipino consumers lacking the funds to indulge in such products. It’s easy to conclude that the pursuit of feelings of happiness can be costly and dangerous, which really shouldn’t be the case. People just have to embrace the fact that we can’t always be blissfully happy or be in a state of euphoria all the time especially when there are situations when we should be in a somber mood.

Researchers in Melbourne, Australia have discovered that “positive thinking could be helpful, but you shouldn’t force it. For most people, deliberate attempts to be optimistic compromise their wellbeing.” In the book The Negative Side of Positive Thinking the author Simon Moss states “all these theories about positive thinking is overrated. Generally speaking, there are some people that generally think positive but if people are anxious then positive thinking is damaging.”

His statement is proof that Filipinos in general cannot and should not claim to be always “happy” despite their obstacles because the notion of a whole society that is always in a permanent of state of bliss is just pure fantasy. Filipinos who force fellow Filipinos to feel happy and patriotic about shallow achievements like Manny Pacquiao’s win or Charice Pempengo’s guest appearance in Glee are just being bullies.

It’s a shame this obsession with feel good moments lead Filipinos to an unhealthy mindset. We become permanent catatonics whose brains are always tethered to entertaining spectacles. It is for this reason that incompetent public servants keep getting voted in as head of the Republic like President Noynoy Aquino because Filipino voters just accept whatever is being fed to them by the media. They don’t use their critical analysis anymore because they don’t get a chance to when they are always preoccupied with having a good time.

We should learn to be more serious about our life and the condition we are in. At the state our country is in, we can’t always pursue having a good time especially since most of us don’t even have the means to have one or don’t even deserve it.

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162 Responses to Filipinos and happiness: why we need to be serious about it

  1. Maybe we should redefine our meaning of happiness. Instead of viewing happiness shallowly as euphoria through mirth and over-indulgence in parties, view happiness as a state of satisfaction from accomplishing something worthwhile to improve one’s station in life.

    In order to properly pursue happiness, one must work for it.

    For example, you cannot be happy (in my sense of the word) if you’re drinking with your buddies while neglecting to improve your expertise. If that person doesn’t become a better worker or person, he might lose his job; and he must consider it seriously, especially if his family has financial troubles. Happiness [or utility in the parlance of economics] is simply a state of improvement from a previous state of affairs.

    • ilda says:

      @Elevic

      The subject of happiness is indeed a difficult one. I have had to revise my draft several times just to make sure that I didn’t come across as another “killjoy” to our compatriots. Thank you for validating my points.

      Our society has definitely messed-up the meaning of happiness. It should be a personal one. Not something that you can be bullied into like being “happy” when Pacquiao wins.

      We all have the tendency to get tired of stuff that we own or the things that we do from time to time. One hobby can be fulfilling one day but boring the next. It is up to each individual to seek another activity that will help him or her feel fulfilled. But being on a fiesta mode is not something that we should all be pursuing just to maintain that above baseline level of happiness.

  2. manzi says:

    ba’t ang mga pulis lang? kunsabagay directly related sila sa insidente. but what about the cute students? (sori mahina ako sa cuteness eh) or society in general? masyadong UZI they don’t really give a damn about what’s happening or what will happen. Ang importante lang sa kanila may happening. daig pa nila ang media. First in the scene tingin ng tingin, comment ng comment but not doing anything to alleviate helping the situation. buti pa ang media may lusot dahil “journalists” sila. they’re just they’re to serve the people’s need for information.

    alala ko tuloy yung jumper dito sa amin. sandamukal na tao pero ni isa walang tumulong. sumisigaw lang wag kang tumalon pero deep inside alam mo kung anong iniisip nila. “DO IT FAGGOT!” kung sa 4chan pa. long story short, tumalon nga at pinagpiyestahan ng mga walanghiyang may camera phone ang kaniyang kumakalat na utak.

    • ilda says:

      I’m glad you get the drift manzi

      You can say that People power would not have happened if it weren’t for the “uziseros.”

      • manzi says:

        which people power are we talking about? yung una lang ang legit para sa akin eh. hive mind yun. nagkaisa talaga. people united for a common cause. very low percentage ng nakisabit “I am Legion for we are many” ikanga.

        all people power sequels on the other hand capitalize on the epicness of the original. yun nga lang distorted na. mob mentality is prevalent.. It’s all fun and games until dumating ang riot squad.

        Oi popoy san punta mo?
        sa Mendiola!
        anong meron?
        May rally!
        Sama ako!

        tapos pag-uwi sa bahay.

        putsa hinalibas ako ng batuta ng pulis! bulok ang sistema!
        ba’t naman ginulpi kayo?
        may nanghagis ng bato. di na malaman kung sino.
        akala ko ba peaceful rally ang sinamahan mo. ba’t ganun?
        ewan kung nga ba niyaya lang ako ni popoy.
        ba’t sumama ka?
        “mukhang masaya eh. tapos may sponsor ng snacks.
        sino ang sponsor?
        di ko alam, sumama lang ako eh.

      • charpierre says:

        Natawa ako sa senario na binigay mo. Pero totoo talaga na yan ang mentality ng karamihan sa mga Filipino at kahit ako minsan ay ganun. Nagpasalamat nga ako na nabasa ko ang mga articles ni ilda dahil may natutunan ako.

    • nymphetamine says:

      Hai naku, kung anak kung yang nasa picture, makakatikim yan sa akin ng hagupit. LOL

    • ChinoF says:

      Filipinos seem fond of spectacles… their lives are probably boring when Wowowee or Willing Wilie are not yet on… lol

      • manzi says:

        Alala ko tuloy ang quote sa movie na “the dark knight”

        Some men aren’t looking for anything logical, like money. They can’t be bought, bullied, reasoned or negotiated with. Some men just want to watch the world burn.

        -Alfred Pennyworth

      • ChinoF says:

        Schadenfreude… hehe

  3. Sareet L says:

    Excellent essay, per usual! Glad you mentioned the ‘happy pill’ industry here in the States. Witness the proliferation of happy, perky, witless TV program hosts on morning shows, who seem to come from a factory.

    It is this inability to be serious about a lot of grave things that keep us from dealing with problems head-on. Which is why I tend to dislike the instant jokes that always arise whenever a new catastrophe arises – when limited to reacting with humour, the problems themselves are never faced, and so life as such goes on, nothing improved, just another source of mockery for most people. It’s that mental state of helplessness that fosters the prevalent joke-making among Pinoys. I personally am sick of all the joke-making that automatically follows some serious situation in any place (US or Pinas), because it feels to the jokers and listeners that that already amounts to a kind of ‘dealing with the problem’.

    In the case of Noynoy’s administration, the whole thing is one big joke, but I’m not laughing. Just weeping with frustration at witnessing the epitome of bad Pinoy characteristics and habits writ large with their bungling, denials, arrogance and incompetence. The only hope lies in making more sleeping people aware of the consequences of our continued voting into office (if elections are assumed to be fair and clean) these clowns!

    • ilda says:

      Thank you Sareet L

      What I really find annoying are those who don’t know when to be serious. I really hate it when they continue to joke around even when they are talking to foreigners who are being very serious during a conversation. Why do they think they have to be funny all the time?

      Sadly, P-Noy is the number one promoter of this kind of screwed mentality when he once stated: “Our problems now, in two or three years we can say that they are laughable when we recall that they were not that grave.” And he was referring to the Mendoza hostage crisis.

      • Sareet L says:

        OMG, I’d forgotten completely about that pronouncement of idiocy and insensitivity by Noynoy! He and his people (well, most of them, as far as we can tell) seem to be missing the sensitivity gene – and/or the gene for decency. This terminally unfunny statement by Noynoy takes the proverbial cake!

        It really makes me wonder if those rumours about his psychiatric status bruited about during the campaign are true – perhaps not his fault, if so – but he really should not be the head of any organisation, much less a country that is so in need of a strong and visionary leader with intelligence, sensitivity and courage.

  4. blueredicedtea says:

    @topic

    problem is: flips are mababaw sa kaligayahan
    and we have to thank the roman catholic church and local media for that.
    “blessed are the poor who s-ucks d-icks at the master”
    “give us this day our daily tacos, with cheese, beef and beans………and forgive us our reading of hentai full of incest, shotacon, lolicon, and futanari…….”

  5. ChinoF says:

    You can blame the media too for giving an idea of “artificial happiness” to our people. It’s like they should still be in euphoria and glee even while they’re slowly sinking in quicksand. 

    Hey, there’s a book called “The Negative Side of Positive Thinking?” About time! 

  6. UP nn grad says:

    Quit when it is time to do so. Here is a link to Romano resignation letter.

  7. Phons Ang says:

    I am sorry to concur what is said here are all true and is indeed how
    foreigners perceive us as a people but afraid to tell us in fear of racial
    backlash and also on ethics of “mind your own business”. I have heard many
    foreign investors lamenting Filipinos are playful even in time of work and they
    are always in entertaining mode. One good ubiquitous example is obsessive love for noise. You can see employees, even in big banks, listening to radio while attending to their jobs, oblivious of customer’s presence. There are not few clever foreigners who see Filipinos being puckish as an opportunity: “If they get serious and hardworking, we will not be in business”.

    • ilda says:

      @Phons Ang

      The situation you cited in the workplace is one of the reasons why I was motivated to write this article.

      The people who continue to goof around probably think that foreign investors or visitors find it “cute” that they are trying to be funny. In fact, my German friend, and Germans are known for being very serious people, think that it is very annoying to be dealing with people who are not absorbing anything he is saying.

  8. EthanRei says:

    I’m so happy for this article, seriously. 😉

  9. Hyden Toro says:

    As the Christian Bible stated: “There is a time; and a season for everything.” ” A time for war, and a time for peace.” “A time for planting; and a time for harvesting.” “A time to love; and a time to hate.”

    Filipinos, like the Mexicans and other South American countries; love “fiestas”, merriment and celebrations that go on for days. They are like Ostriches. Putting their heads inside a hole; when serious problems occur. Hoping the problems will go away. This is who we are. We don’t take matters seriously, like electing able leaders…

    • ilda says:

      The Bible quote is indeed very fitting for my article Hyden Toro. Unfortunately, the meaning of it gets lost with Bible reading Filipinos.

      Thanks for mentioning it though.

      • Hyden Toro says:

        I respect all Holy Books. Every religion is my brother. We are all worshiping our Divine Source. Whatever your position in praying to Him: facing an altar; or prostrating towards Mecca; or bathing in Ganges River in India…to wash away sins. It is the same…we are all thankful of our life…

    • Marv IN says:

      Aren’t you disrespecting the Bible though by equating it with how Filipinoes act like Ostriches?

      I’m not saying your point is wrong but the overall theme of the Bible are that suffering people often act like Ostriches. 

      From Moses to Jesus…the lesson of the Bible has always been “someone has to initiate the change”. Even Christ went so far as being crucified for that and yet the final sentences of your post:

      “This is who we are. We don’t take matters seriously, like electing able leaders…”

      Huh??? Throughout the Bible there are stories of Moses being laughed at or Christ being accused of heresy and things falling out between supposed leaders. Let us not forget that even to those who want to elect able leaders, is the infrastructure in place? Did you already forget the fiasco with Comelec supplies last election?

      • Hyden Toro says:

        If people behave in stupid ways, and they read the Bible. It is not equating the Bible to stupidity.
        I believe some passages of some Holy Books. Some can be explained in scientific ways. I think you did not understand my message. If the head of the Church, like the Iglesia Ni Kristo sells its members’ vote to politicians. Or Catholic Priests sexually abuse children. And, I point these evils within their churches. It does not mean, I don’t respect their churches or faiths.

      • Marv IN says:

        I am not saying you are equating the Bible to stupidity. To modify the question:

        “Aren’t you disrespecting the lessons taught in the Bible?”

        This is vaguer but maybe this makes more sense.

        The problem with your follow post is that now you are mentioning religious institutions where as originally you are mentioning Filipinoes being ostriches.

        Maybe there is a connection there somehow but yes I do not understand your message hence my question.

    • Phons Ang says:

      Interestingly what you wrote about Ostrich jibes with a note I posted in my facebook in Nov 9, which I paste below to share with readers here:

      In the aftermath of the HK hostage fiasco, I considered those who regarded the incident as “nakakahiya” to be sensible people who are one step closer to the positive character reformation, because they still possess the sense of shame. As for those who respond with the satirical “Only in the Philippines” when confronted with awkward situations like jeepneys or buses stopping in the middle of the street to take and unload passengers, men peeing at every corner in broad daylight like dogs, and churches allowing churchgoers to triple-park cars for their convenience and cause traffic jams for others, I regard them as mature persons who can identify the defects of our society, and I presume that they are restlessly clamoring for change. As for those who admit that “Filipino maids have a very low status abroad” and “the Philippines is a nation of servants,” I salute them as courageous people, for they are brave enough to face reality, and I suppose that such people who are able to analyze the causes of our international embarrassments can be the catalysts of social transformation in our country, if they are called upon to play that role.

      On the contrary, there is a horde who tries to cure our “International Image Crisis” by applying Ostrich Psychology, i.e., “Don’t flagellate ourselves. Just move on and ignore how others see us, and just feel proud about ourselves by thinking of some great men in our history and a few modern-day exceptionally successful and respected people.” This so-called Positive Thinking does not sound so unfamiliar. Yes, it can provide temporary relief for our low self-esteem; however, it will retard our ability to cope with the real world. The people who are told to apply this philosophy are like children getting failing grades in school who are encouraged by parents to imagine they have perfect scores in order to avoid depression and be happy. If cloud 9 feeling is in effect, I don’t think there can be room for improvement. It is a form of narcissism and chauvinism as well if we keep on suggesting to ourselves that “Magaling tayo” and “We have all the reasons to feel proud,” despite being puked and spat at because of our apparent character flaws. Our growth stagnates due to this self-adulation. We then remain a despicable people in the eyes of the international community.

      It has always been my firm and unequivocal belief that only through “knowing oneself” and “identifying and admitting our own weaknesses” can we start effecting changes in ourselves. I find this conviction of mine very much in congruence with many writings in http://www.antipinoy.com, which I logged on to out of curiosity to find out why there are people so hostile to Filipinos. I was astonished to learn that the full name of the website is actually “Who really is the anti-Pinoy?” Moreover, the contributors there are not anti-Pinoy in any sense at all, but on the contrary are very much concerned about current political issues. One can feel a sense of patriotism not found in other webpages. The character flaws and cultural defects of the Pinoy are zeroed in for discussion, obviously for the ultimate goal of correcting them. It is quite a new experience to read this kind of writing from a non-traditional source. By asserting that this website is worth a visit, I wonder if I am also running the risk of being called “anti-Pinoy” or a “racist”, considering my Chinese-Filipino background.

      • Hyden Toro says:

        @ Phongs Ang…
        The great Psychologist Professor Abraham Maslov stated: “The only way you can change the mindset (belief) of a Person is: to bring to him/her, the awareness of himself/herself.” The truth may hurt; but we have to accept them. It is only when a Patient, accepts his/her illness. That his/her healing can start…Denial of his/her illness will never bring his/her cure…

  10. ulong pare says:

    daaaang!…HAPPINESS all relative; it’s a state of mind… am a happy-go-lucky filipino, seriously… … most flips are nosey, seriously… 99% are afflicted with crab mentality, seriously… and never a day passed by without bitching, seriously… hay naku, flips, puro kayo gung gongs! seriously…

    • Hyden Toro says:

      @Ulong Pare…Mario Toporco asked what language you are talking. I told him: Ulong Pare is an Extra Terrestrial. He is from the Planet UX-W20. From the Constellation: Sirius. A Galaxy about 2,000 light years away from our Planet Earth. He happened to land in the Philippines, many years ago. He was a good “tale bearer” in his Planet. Until, he started talking too much of what he knew about corrupt leaders in his planet. So, they exiled him…

      • ulong pare says:

        @hyden t: ulong pare is non-denominational, non-judgemental bloke… he take all inputs (environmental, physical, governmental, etc.,etc) into consideration to come up with the reason…. on the other hand, flip HILOminaties think they KNOW IT ALL, just bekos they write ferpekt englitzheched… hay naku, flips puro kayo gung gongs…

    • ChinoF says:

      Openly happy, but secretly bitching, must be how Pinoys are. 

      • ulong pare says:

        my homeyz in da ‘hood are just plain happy… we are comfortable with what we have… we don’t base our happines on any material thingies… if we have lugaw and galunggong for dinner, it’s ok… ditto with a morcon y paella por comida buena… hay naku, flips… YOU ARE ENTITLED TO YOUR OWN DELUSIONS!!!

  11. outoftheblue says:

    We Filipinos should look for “true happiness” and not just those pass by. We do not have to go far in order to become happy. To me, it boils down to relationships and responsibility. If an individual evaluates his/her self and gets to know what he/she needs and what he/she wants, this is a good start in finding happiness. 

    I am too, against the culture of spending and celebrating too much. It is a pain to see the most of our youth party until morning. I know a few who does this on a regular basis then come up with excuses such as “eh bakit ba, pera ko naman ito”. “Eh anu naman, matataas pa rin naman grades ko”.

    A pain to see people who have less try to spend more just to show off. I also know some people who tries to show off by frequenting Starbucks, going to the latest establishments, and buying the new trends of signature clothing. All of these are not bad, but what makes it bad is when someone who does not have much to spend still tries just to keep up with the status that they’re trying to project. May pang Starbucks at magaganda damit pero wala namang bahay. Rent lang pala sa maliit na lugar. And worse, yung iba ang rarangya ng lifestyle pero ang dami pa lang utang. 

    On the other had, I also know some people who knows where to put their money. They have simple lifestyles but you’ll see that they’re looking for business opportunities or allotting some savings for a home or car of their own. 

    I hope that we, as a nation, don’t get ourselves into too much consumerism. I hope that those, epsecially in the lower class, put their resources into better use (investments). There’s happiness in living a simple lifestyle. Often times, less is more. 

    • ilda says:

      Thanks outoftheblue. I wish Jack below read your comment first before putting his two cents in.   There is no denying what we see in what most Filipinos do. It’s just that some of us have come to accept it as normal behaviour. Never mind that it contributes to our backwardness.

    • ChinoF says:

      As I said in another of Ilda’s articles, Filipinos should stop looking for vicarious experiences – such as buying fake designer goods to pretend having such brands, or even buying too much of the real brands that they run out of money just to “feel” rich. Second, Filipinos should stop stop buying things just to show off to other people – “here son/daughter, here’s a Giordano/(other designer good) so you can show that you are magara.”  And third, Filipinos should stop showing off

    • Marv IN says:

      “A pain to see people who have less try to spend more just to show off. I also know some people who tries to show off by frequenting Starbucks, going to the latest establishments, and buying the new trends of signature clothing. All of these are not bad, but what makes it bad is when someone who does not have much to spend still tries just to keep up with the status that they’re trying to project. May pang Starbucks at magaganda damit pero wala namang bahay. Rent lang pala sa maliit na lugar. And worse, yung iba ang rarangya ng lifestyle pero ang dami pa lang utang.”

      While I support your message of frugality, from the side of Starbucks and other expensive brands – buyers help convince foreign investors to come to the country and make “more” consumer addicting shops which in turn helps provide more jobs and cheaper commodities due to all the competition.

      Central banking is always based on utang. Although these two are not directly related, I feel it is a bit hypocritical for us to condemn those who have lavish lifestyles while ignoring the lavish aspects in our country that doesn’t contend with frugalism. That is to say, if we both lead a lavish yet frugal lifestyle, it is better for our country’s economy than merely being anti-consumption.

      Another problem with investments, homes and cars are far from the solution. It too is a pursuit of happiness and it can also easily lead to a housing bubble. It also goes hand in hand with business opportunities. If Ilda’s statement that foreign investors are “minding their own businesses” even though it’s their employees we are talking about, it begs the question how well are they training these people? How well are they developing employees who would expand their business opportunities?

      “If an individual evaluates his/her self and gets to know what he/she needs and what he/she wants, this is a good start in finding happiness.”

      I apologize if my comments are a mish mash but my intention is merely to highlight this flaw in your above statement and point out to you that if an individual then discovers that what they want and need are lavishness, entertainment to escape the drudges of life without going into drugs, over-spending to feel as if they are part of something due to the marketing power of brands… all of these issues could be non-problems if the investors or the bosses or middle management would attempt to train and develop more disciplined employees…which in turn makes frugality an unrelated subject from the type of happiness being talked about by the article writer. (although she obviously feels differently about your comment)

      • Jay says:

        While I support your message of frugality, from the side of Starbucks and other expensive brands – buyers help convince foreign investors to come to the country and make “more” consumer addicting shops which in turn helps provide more jobs and cheaper commodities due to all the competition.

        Japan as a culture is heavily frugal, which there are people trying to help make them spend more to spur up their economy in recent years. Part of it is in their conditioning back when they were developing again and they had to save and put their money for future generations to invest.

        Its rather hard to buy when people don’t necessarily have the spending power, cost of living is high and even utility costs affect both consumers AND potential investors. The current situation is a loss-loss and your example applies more for places like China, as they have the numbers and potential for investors to set up and take advantage of China’s numbers and potential spending ability.

        I think ultimately, one has to help promote, at least in familial or individuals to live by their own means and find ways to make better do with money. But overall help create an economic environment where as you mentioned, competition thrives, creating better goods and services which entails to more choices and opportunities. Middle class type items become affordable and lavishness still IS lavishness, but doesn’t entail necessity more than it is plainly luxury. Stop them from thinking about keeping with the Jone’s and you can start something.

        I don’t think its the responsibility of the boss or middle management to help create the mindset for its lower ranks, unless they see these people in the long term to help expand their businesses.

      • outoftheblue says:

        Jay, 

        Point taken my friend. Thanks for the comments!

      • Marv IN says:

        “Japan as a culture is heavily frugal, which there are people trying to help make them spend more to spur up their economy in recent years. Part of it is in their conditioning back when they were developing again and they had to save and put their money for future generations to invest.”
        While I certainly haven’t been to Japan and have no right to assume this deeply of their culture, I think just judging by how they are perceived from the outside, heavily frugal is an inaccurate statement to describe them.
        For one thing, frugality is not about not buying stuff. 
        Second their economy is suffering not because people aren’t buying (considering how even if we were to assume they need convincing to move their economy, they have very strong merchandise friendly cities)
        and finally assuming we are talking of the free market, frugality in a free market would be them not needing to be “convinced” as a general culture to spend money. Free market means the market is designed in such a way that the producers who get on top are those who are backed by the spenders and continue to produce things they want. None of these is about convincing people that they should buy what they don’t want as a culture. 
        “Its rather hard to buy when people don’t necessarily have the spending power, cost of living is high and even utility costs affect both consumers AND potential investors. The current situation is a loss-loss and your example applies more for places like China, as they have the numbers and potential for investors to set up and take advantage of China’s numbers and potential spending ability.”
        True but this also reflects poorly on frugality which was what my reply was about.
        My example doesn’t really reflect on China or anything specific to be honest. This is what the market is supposed to be about in a free market vision. 
        All the details you pointed out are indeed factors but I wonder if we’re on the same page. It seems you have misunderstood my generalization of a market for the specifics of…well again I am not sure where your contention is. I do not disagree with the substance of your statement, I just don’t know why you feel my example needs to be specific towards any country. Sure because China is booming they are closer to achieving this type of definition but every country who has a semblance of capitalism has a semblance of a market and every market could be simplified to that issue where neither frugality or lavishness is much help compared to resources and opportunities.
        “I think ultimately, one has to help promote, at least in familial or individuals to live by their own means and find ways to make better do with money. But overall help create an economic environment where as you mentioned, competition thrives, creating better goods and services which entails to more choices and opportunities. Middle class type items become affordable and lavishness still IS lavishness, but doesn’t entail necessity more than it is plainly luxury. Stop them from thinking about keeping with the Jone’s and you can start something.”
        Well the big question with this has always been “how do you plan to help promote this?” and in fact this goes to the core contention with free markets. Do you plan to promote this through government intervention? Then there’s not pro-free market. Do you plan to promote this through the free market? Then you don’t need to promote anything at all except for educating people more on how a free market system works.
        Of course when you factor such things as whether there a “true” free market system works at all and whether the latest boom be it China or some other new country not implementing a “true” free market is proof that the a true free market system exists/doesn’t exists…it gets complicated. Even in the United States many are still blaming the free market for their deflation/inflation/recession problems. 
        Either way, 
        “Middle class type items become affordable and lavishness still IS lavishness, but doesn’t entail necessity more than it is plainly luxury. Stop them from thinking about keeping with the Jone’s and you can start something.”
        This is not really the realms of a solution as much as it is the realms of preference. Even if we twist around what is frugal or not or what is lavishness but still “affordable” lavishness, it’s still not going to help much with lifting up the country. It’s like saying well one culture has this or one culture has that which is what led to their economic state being this or that…but the idea of economics (well some branches) is that it should work with the people and not against it otherwise you can social engineer it as much as you want, eventually it will fall. With that said, I’d just like to clarify that I don’t know anything about economics and even economists disagree with each other on things like these but from my viewpoint, it is why I still feel a frugal culture is not necessarily a long term solution. Not because a frugal culture may not help with savings and more intelligent spending but because at the heart of it all, a working economic system should be one that takes into account and not reject the flaws of humanity.
        “I don’t think its the responsibility of the boss or middle management to help create the mindset for its lower ranks, unless they see these people in the long term to help expand their businesses.”
        That’s the sad part. However in a free market system, that’s how it is. If the point of the boss or middle management is not to “manage” then why be managers?
        Short or long term, I firmly believe that that if you can’t train people on the short term, then it’s not going to help much with the long term.
        It’s just going to create a corporate culture and a corporate culture…well it’s hard to say it’s wrong when that’s 90% of what we see nowadays and that’s our association of the elites but it’s not the type of culture that will leapfrog the Philippines in my opinion. Maybe one day my opinion will change but I firmly believe in creating a culture where people stand on the shoulder of giants rather than step on each other’s crab mentality. It’s naive I know but the alternative of hamburger management doesn’t sound that much more pleasing to me. 

      • Jay says:

        @Marv IN

        We certainly got mixed up with whatever you were expressing I figured, considering you aren’t talking about the specifics of the system but the effect overall. My contention chiefly was with your statement of buyers help convince foreign investors to come to the country and make “more” consumer addicting shops which in turn helps provide more jobs and cheaper commodities due to all the competition. Which has already been described the problem with this in the Philippines. They can get certain markets to come but it is still choking the investors coming in and potential investors coming due to the current laws, specifically AP’s contention of the restrictionist laws.

        Which then comes to my part of the promotion. Changing the laws levels the playing field, does more of what you want with giving more opportunities to the country’s hungry job market, which are educated but still lagging behind in terms of raw experience and takes it to the familial owners who have long dominated the industry and customer service mindset of the country. There is a chance the Philippines may not keep up but then again, its either adaptation or death. And I’d rather see the country pull their highest effort to adapt than wither away with what they are running with now.

        This is not really the realms of a solution as much as it is the realms of preference.

        Well, I answer with beggars can’t be choosers. Either people save up, look to help change the ways the country’s economy operates and where their taxes go or continue to lose out as each decade passes. If people can’t adapt to how the economy is, they can’t complain as to why they can’t afford even the simplest things needed for daily survival. Besides the fact they may be unemployed or what not.

        Maybe one day my opinion will change but I firmly believe in creating a culture where people stand on the shoulder of giants rather than step on each other’s crab mentality.

        The moment people stop ignoring and start expressing a desire for a level playing field and they will surpass the crab mentality.

      • outoftheblue says:

        Thanks Marvin!

        I appreciate the comments!

      • ChinoF says:

        “if an individual then discovers that what they want and need are lavishness, entertainment to escape the drudges of life without going into drugs, over-spending to feel as if they are part of something due to the marketing power of brands… all of these issues could be non-problems”

        Not for me, dude. If an individual is like that, there there is a problem. Even modern psychology sees excessive spending and lavishness as symptoms of a problem, aside from being a problem itself. Besides, if people are unusually lavish, it’s seen as a problem. And if they spend more than they earn… obviously it can’t be a non-problem. That’s the basis of Ilda’s article as I see it. 

      • Marv IN says:

        @Jay
        “Which then comes to my part of the promotion. Changing the laws levels the playing field, does more of what you want with giving more opportunities to the country’s hungry job market, which are educated but still lagging behind in terms of raw experience and takes it to the familial owners who have long dominated the industry and customer service mindset of the country. There is a chance the Philippines may not keep up but then again, its either adaptation or death. And I’d rather see the country pull their highest effort to adapt than wither away with what they are running with now.”
        This is one of the major issues hurting the vision of a free market.
        Free market (at least the real version) can be translate to “Laws leave us alone”. “Us” here not being citizens or countries or basic human rights or anything but simply businesses.
        At the core the heart of this idea is the simple philosophy that those laws who are supposed to “level the playing field” often make the playing field worse and are in themselves more prone to corruption.
        Of course I am merely trying to explain this from a free market perspective. This isn’t to say I’m trying to convince you that this is the right way and in fact this is why people tend to say the free market is not possible/doesn’t exist. Many don’t believe in this. However I hope by clarifying this it makes it even more clearer why we continue to be mixed up.
        “There is a chance the Philippines may not keep up but then again, its either adaptation or death. And I’d rather see the country pull their highest effort to adapt than wither away with what they are running with now.”
        Also, and again here I am merely trying to clarify what a free market means, this holds true to what the free market thinks. The key contention here is that your view of “level playing field laws” from a free market perspective translates not to adaptation or death but adaptation or please government re-intervene in our lives again, help sell us greater good sounding bills that you will find ways to corrupt again, use once again the good will of your more kind hearted politicians to idealize a new level playing field which won’t help much or would only make things worse. An example of this issue is protectionism which one of the AP writers wrote a post on.

        “Well, I answer with beggars can’t be choosers. Either people save up, look to help change the ways the country’s economy operates and where their taxes go or continue to lose out as each decade passes. If people can’t adapt to how the economy is, they can’t complain as to why they can’t afford even the simplest things needed for daily survival. Besides the fact they may be unemployed or what not.”
        On the contrary, beggars always tend to choose especially in times of great suffering as highlighted by Ilda’s post. (Assuming all we under this inefficient and corrupt government are beggars)
        Also another flaw in that mindset is that it assumes saving up has an impact on taxes or changing the government. If anything, saving up may merely convince the government that there is a spending problem and laws convincing people to buy will be enacted. 
        “If people can’t adapt to how the economy is, they can’t complain as to why they can’t afford even the simplest things needed for daily survival. Besides the fact they may be unemployed or what not.”
        Depending on the version of economy you believe in, the people are the economy. There is no “adapting to the economy”.
        Also again your correlations aren’t matching up. If they can’t adapt, they can’t complain? Err… most people who get burned on the stove would complain that the stove is hot. It’s just general biology. This is often why even well intentioned ideology can lead to no solution. 
        Not that I’m implying yours is or isn’t. It’s just a warning. It just seems you have a lot of good intentions but the way they are connecting to each other often reads…disconnected…at least to my eyes.
        P.S. There’s no such thing as surpassing crab mentality. Not today anyway. Not that this means you can’t have a philosophy seeking that but it’s like following a rule of not killing but eating everyday.
        @ChinoF
        “Not for me, dude. If an individual is like that, there there is a problem. Even modern psychology sees excessive spending and lavishness as symptoms of a problem, aside from being a problem itself. Besides, if people are unusually lavish, it’s seen as a problem. And if they spend more than they earn… obviously it can’t be a non-problem. That’s the basis of Ilda’s article as I see it. ”
        I was speaking from the perspective of individual freedom. That is, like fried chicken which can increase heart disease, if the individual likes to eat it then their right to lavishness is theirs and no man has the right to force them away from the fried chicken. They can warn them, inform them, educate them…just not hide behind a law.
        There too lies the problem I have with modern psychology. I am not anti-psychology as Tom Cruise but I cannot put my faith in an institution that allowed the idea of drugging a highly creative child under the well intentioned reason that they should be less lavish in questioning their education system. (Note that again, this doesn’t mean psychology hasn’t helped humanity…it’s just not as good as an authority when it is used as a statement to appeal to authority)
        Let us not even begin with the problem of measuring lavishness. What intelligence does any other man other than himself possess to accurately state what is unusually lavish for that individual or not?
        Unless the other person is being beat up, hurt, etc. etc. by that other man’s unusual lavish actions then unusual lavishness cannot be accurately measured by another person.
        Ilda does highlight this in her post but the problem with this current subject is we are not talking about Ilda’s article but my reply to a sub-issue that has developed from a comment on her post about frugality.
        Finally to add to this problem, if you really think about it, many of the richest foreign investors are unusually lavish. In fact, the biggest and most successful and often most generous people are often those who are “unusually” lavish. 
        This is because this mentality of unusual lavishness is an important core of what a mega-entrepreneur makes. This may or may not make much sense though.
        I am after all trying to re-direct the meaning of the word to the dictionary definition instead of the negative stigma associated with lavishness. Still, I feel it is worth pointing out. Often times by not looking at both sides of a word we tend to miss out that certain vices – although as a vague general item seems bad – can just as much lead to many of the most intangible goods that are on par with the pantheons of virtues that we often praise as necessary lessons like frugality.

      • ChinoF says:

        I believe judging lavishness should just be measured by, “don’t live beyond your means.” No matter what your perception is, the reality will bite and you will feel it. 

  12. AlvinEternal says:

    As a Christian myself, I wanna say this:

    “True happiness comes from the one who puts his trust in God and does His will & His purpose.”

    Kaya minsan, kahit naghihirap na kami, I always thank the Lord for He provided our needs, especially when it comes to paying our bills. Sa totoo lang, those who are “happy” w/o going deeper and ignoring are faults are people who delude themselves. No wonder why PNoy was called “a smiling dog” to the people of Hong Kong.

    BTW, if I will see those stupid kolehiyalas again, I’ll make a requiem for them: “ETERNAL REQUIEM.” And give them a thumbs down.

  13. Jack says:

    Common guys we are been too harsh on Filipinos.

    #1. Ronald Reagon was an actor and became the president of America.

    #2. Sr. Bush was head of CIA and became the president of America.

    #3. Jr. Bush became American president NOT ONCE BUT TWICE.

    #4. Obama with change and false hope, scammed the american public in broad daylight.

    What proof we need that one the the most intellectual and wealthy country on earth can elect stupid people to the highest office…we should spare the Filipinos and other third world countries people.

    Bush with all his crime is still walking free. If Russia or PH elects head of KGB or NBI to become president of Russia or PH…Will you accept it ?.. Apparently, US did not had any issue when head of intelligence became the president of America.

    If American people were smart enough, they would never have elected Jr. Bush TWICE… At least, Filipinos ousted Marcos for his crimes and made Estrada to step down. Did American people do that with their leaders. NO.

    If ever America become like PH with its crumbling economy, we will never see the dawn there…It will be loot and chaos….already 1 in 4 Americans live on Food stamps and 2 million in prison camps…the largest on earth.

    I’m from India and from my observations, Filipinos happiness comes from WITHIN…Inside out..not from outside….Its the small small things in life that make Filipinos happy just like Indians or other third world countries. I think as you are too close to it, may be you guys don’t see it…BUT Filipinos are generally happy with the situation they are in…..outside it is much worse…How many Filipino actors commit suicide like in Korea…Japan has the highest rate of suicide on earth..More or less…we all have got equal share of happiness and wealth no matter where we are.. Thanks.

    • ilda says:

      Hi Jack

      You have a lot to learn about Filipinos. You have proven one of my points though – that Filipinos tend to copy what happens in the US. Did you know that the late former actor/US President Ronald Reagan’s win became a precedent for Philippine actors/celebrities to run as public servants? Prior to that there was no record of any Philippine celebrity running for public office. I can still recall a lot of interviews with Erap back then always referring to Reagan. Reagan’s stint in the White House was quite possibly former actor/President Joseph Estrada’s ticket to Malacanang. And it was all down hill from there.

      The thing is Jack, Americans don’t just vote celebrities because they are popular, they vote them in because they are qualified for the job, they just happen to be former actors. And if you notice, most actors who run for public office in America quit acting altogether once they have been voted in.

      Boxer Manny Pacquiao is already a Congressman but he still goes to boxing matches. I don’t find that situation ideal because he is supposed to be committed to his duties as a public servant but he spends a lot of his time away from his desk training in another country and then he also risks his health and wellbeing in the boxing ring. That doesn’t make any sense to me. But I wouldn’t be surprised if he becomes the Philippine president one day.

      I don’t see why Bush Sr’s stint in the CIA would be a problem for you. His stint in the CIA is not comparable to being a celebrity. And George W Bush was a governor of Texas before going to the White House. Although George W was a dud in the White House, his resume says he graduated from both Yale and a Harvard Universities. In other words, the American voters didn’t see it coming. Your dislike for Obama is digressing from the topic already.

      C’mon Jack, just because the Americans got it wrong once it doesn’t mean they get it wrong all the time. While Filipino voters have a long history of getting it wrong most of the time.

      Pardon me for saying this but I don’t see your point really. Are you saying that Filipinos should be contented with their situation? Are you saying that the suicides in Japan and Korea are enough excuse for Filipinos to stop aiming for economic stability? Excuse me but there are more deaths occurring due to poverty and incompetence from both private and public sectors.

      Are you saying that Filipinos should not aim for excellence? I know you come from India and India has its own issues but you also produce a lot of individuals who excel in science and technology. You have a lot of citizens who study abroad with the intention of using their acquired knowledge and skill in your homeland. This can only mean that excellence is very much appreciated in your country. The fact that there is a brain drain in the Philippines should already tell you that bright Filipinos find no incentive to stay in the country.

      I guess you did not get the gist of the article, really. I suggest you read it again because you do not know the Filipinos like Filipinos do.

      • Jack says:

        Thanks for the comment. I agree that Filipinos copy most of the stuff from America which is true with India and other countries also. Actually, Bush got admission in Yale & Harvard not because of his qualification but because of his grand fathers donation to both universities and for the fact that his in laws were members of skull and bones secret societies. 

        http://www.bilderberg.org/skulbone.htm

        http://www.jeremiahproject.com/newworldorder/nworder03.html

        If we look deeper all 43 presidents in America were members of freemasonry and have direct blood relation to European royal families

        http://hubpages.com/hub/Nearly-all-US-Presidents-are-descendant-from-the-British-and-French-Royal-Families
        http://www.myspace.com/asgartha/blog/379235936

        My point is Filipinos talent and happiness  is nothing to do with economic growth, there are certain groups or cabal of people THAT deliberately do not want PH to come up. The whole situation that filipinos or Indians or africans are in right now has nothing to do with outselfs…we are been manipulated.

      • ilda says:

        @Jack

        You know I don’t really subscribe to the notion that we (PH, India or Africa) are being manipulated by the freemasons. Even if we are, they can only do so up to a point. You make it sound like all the educated “elite” members of our society has been under their spell for decades now. Some are admittedly emotional indeed and don’t use their critical analysis. But you are basically suggesting that our culture and beliefs have nothing to do with who we are as a people. Sorry, but I have to disagree with your conspiracy theory.

      • simplesimon says:

        Ano sabi mo dito?

        “…Ronald Reagan’s win became a precedent for Philippine actors/celebrities to run as public servants? Prior to that there was no record of any Philippine celebrity running for public office.”

        ILDA YOUR LACK OF RESEARCH IS ASTOUNDING!!!! MAKES YOU LOOK MORE STUPID THAN THE INTELLECTUAL THAT YOU ARE PRETENDING TO BE

        Magbasa-basa ka nga muna bago ka magsalita!!! You don’t know what you’re talking about ginagaya daw natin ang US sa pag-elect ng people into public office??? hahahaha what are you smoking????

        Kaya nga may google and wikipedia eh…saang library ka pa ba nagpupunta???

        http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Joseph_Estrada
        Mayor of San JuanIn officeDecember 30, 1969 – March 25, 1986  (that was waaaay before Reagan!! ilda gaga!!)

        Schwarzenegger et al—
        http://www.insidepolitics.org/heard/westreport903.html

        By the way, you talk about being truthful, about exposing the truth out there? Then why are you hiding under a photo of Catherine Zeta Jones ba yan? Isn’t that hypocrisy? For all I know you’re some ugly old maid kasing pangit ng iyong kalooban, pangit na nga sa labas pangit pa rin sa loob. At least sa labas may solution pang plastic surgery, sa loob wala na…tsk tsk tsk…

      • benign0 says:

        Psst, don’t look now but someone is on a tililing rampage… 😀

      • ilda says:

        LOL…you are so easy to bait Mr simpleton. Here you go again showing off your Googling skills. Don’t forget this article is dedicated to you. Do you really think that I don’t realise things are so easy to look up? I had to give you something to do 😉 because looking for technical errors is something you are fond of doing due to your lack of substance.

        We’re still talking about Erap dude and no one else before him. Reagan was in politics already as the 33rd Governor of California (1967–1975). He entered politics as a member of the Republican party in the early 60s waaaay before I was born. I also said “Reagan’s stint in the White House was quite possibly former actor/President Joseph Estrada’s ticket to Malacanang. And it was all down hill from there. What’s Arnold Schwarzenegger got to do with this?

        Once again you have proven that you are a point misser! Have a look again at the people who commented. They don’t really care about technicalities. They just care about the point. Your actions say a lot about you.

        Buhuhu…according to simplesimon I am some ugly old maid and he only talks to beautiful people. That’s the kind of person he is. He must look like Brad Pitt. 😉

        Guess again dude! My avatar is not Catherine Zeta Jones!

    • outoftheblue says:

      Jack, 

      I don’t really find the commentaries harsh. If they are, I think it is alright. Perhaps, only a few of the population has access to such material. In my opinion, our task here is to spread the word and more importantly, live the change we want.  

      This is also a paradigm shift that I am hoping to happen for us Filipinos. We should accept comments and treat them as opportunities. Instead of saying that others are being mean. Let’s always take the time to evaluate and re-evaluate ourselves. Besides, in the end, we gain from it. 

      This is what Anti-Pinoy is about. It is a resource for observations that will help improve ourselves, our society, and to a larger scale our country. 

      • Jack says:

        Thanks for the comment. freedom of expression in all forms is correct. I Like anit-pinoy cos of excellent article its posts which can’t be found anywhere on the net. My point is there are people who deliberately do not want PH to come up economically, ‘cos filipinos outside of PH are really doing well and are happy too 🙂

    • ChinoF says:

      My take: It’s not us who are harsh on Filipinos, but Filipinos who are harsh on themselves by choosing the wrong leaders and practicing the wrong ideals and values in life. Just as Americans were harsh on themselves for choosing Bush. 😉

    • Hyden Toro says:

      @Jack…
      If you are a Hindu. We can wash away all our sins (mistakes) in the Ganges River in India, to start anew. If you are a Buddhist; We can all, get out from our physical bodies thru meditation, and go to our own: Shang-gri-lla or Shambala; where there is no stupidity; like where we are in now.
      Unfortunately, we cannot leave our physical bodies…unless, we have to die, in order to reincarnate to a better position in life…

      • Jack says:

        hehehe…actually i don’t have a religion…but my parents are roman catholic, so they gave me that when i was a kid…….human beings are not stupid….we are been manipulated by all these organised system..left on our own devices..we will do good…I have met people from all over the world…lived in PH for two years and i have only met great people. Thanks

      • Marv IN says:

        To add to what the others have stated Jack, I think you highlighted the perfect reason why we should be harsh on ourselves. (I’m a Filipino)

        “What proof we need that one the the most intellectual and wealthy country on earth can elect stupid people to the highest office…we should spare the Filipinos and other third world countries people”

        In my line of work, this is what’s called a niche. The more intellectual (although US is far from intellectual nowadays) and wealthy (again America is no longer this but the damage has not yet been truly felt) country on Earth does something wrong? It’s like a marathon where the person currently far ahead in 1st place stumbled and now it’s up to those lagging behind to catch up.

        Will we catch up by stumbling also and crying to the audience to share some of the pity they gave to the leader who had stumbled or will we use this perfect opportunity to not only continue racing but to watch the videotape of how the runner stumbled so that we can avoid making the same mistake in the future?

  14. MKDL Studios says:

    I remember those days when my family convinces me to stop discussing on the most sensitive topics about our country (esp. the Maguindanao massacre and the recent Manila hostage crisis), claiming that these make me selfish and even put my family in danger because of extrajudicial punishment (dapat daw akong umatras sa ganitong talakayan sa pulitika); instead, sabi nila, I should be blogging more on the “pleasant” side of life, including those “tarentos” like Justin Bieber (“tarentos” in this context are much worse than the original Japanese definition, as they tend to focus more on the money, ratings, and popularity rather than their actual performing skill), at good thing we have congressmen to speak for the most sensitive matters. May magagawa ba akong kapaki-pakinabang kung ako ay naging “istambay” ng mga sikat?

    And also on the day of PNoy’s inauguration, when I start doubting about the President’s future “performance” in accordance with the pains that our Republic has suffered, I heard something like “Don’t be such a pessimist.” How can I be pessimistic when I’m pointing out the gaffes in our culture in a constructive and genuinely critical way, and not of the emo-ish type?

    I even recall many times by my family that I must be in good terms with all people as much as possible. Desiderata with myriads of Pinoy pasaways and monsters like the Ampatuans? That’s just like the two tribes-puzzle (refer to http://allphilosophy.com/topic/955 for more info).

    I wonder if journalism in the PHL is reduced to the Tweetbiz and Showbiz Central types… Puro happiness ang nauuna kaysa sa masusing pagtalakay sa mga pinakamainit na paksa, lalo na tungkol sa pulitika.

    Kaya ang isang magandang tema ng pagdiriwang ng unang anibersaryo ng Maguindanao massacre: Matatamsan ba ng ginto, kasikatan, magandang mga linlang ang mapait na katotohanan?

    • ilda says:

      @ MKDL Studios

      I’m glad you maintain your own principles despite the many obstacles you have to face even with your own family. It’s hard to go against the flow. There will be times when you’ll feel like you are on your own and may even doubt yourself. But I can see that trust in P-Noy is slowly eroding. We are going to be proven right soon enough. When the proverbial crap hits the fan, we should be ready to say, “I told you so”. Emphasizing the error of their ways is the only way to teach these moronic voters a lesson; otherwise they will do it again.

      • Marv IN says:

        Again like Ilda, I’m also glad you hanged on MKDL Studios. I just disagree with her statement. (This is a mixed reply to both of your comments)

        We NEED a plan once the proverbial crap hits the fan. Which let us not forget is not the first time this has happened in the Philippines.

        If when that day comes and all we can say is “I told you so”. Mahihijack na naman ang future of this country.

        Ikanga, the liberals of today are the conservatives of tomorrow.

        In this same vein, the APs of today must be the Ps with a solution once tomorrow hits the fan.

        As far as your comment regarding this MKDL Studios,

        “I wonder if journalism in the PHL is reduced to the Tweetbiz and Showbiz Central types… Puro happiness ang nauuna kaysa sa masusing pagtalakay sa mga pinakamainit na paksa, lalo na tungkol sa pulitika.”

        Don’t be fooled!!! Do not believe for a second that if we upgraded from Tweetbiz to New York Times or CNN that this is the height of journalism.

        Kahit mauna ang politikal debates, what any mainstream media will try to do is to tune out issues like the Maguindanao massacre or twist it. Hindi invested ang media diyan unless ma-sesensationalize nila ang issue or ma-didilute. Their priority first and foremost is to get the report out for the day. Even if they do get a documentary out, it’s not going to be investigated in-depthly towards a solution. Mapupunta pa rin talaga sa politicians ang pag-resolba until we stop relying on the mainstream media for our news.

      • Jay says:

        If when that day comes and all we can say is “I told you so”. Mahihijack na naman ang future of this country.

        So you are implying the future has not already been compromised? There is no real foundation and they have been going on this ‘road’ and for another six years, another daan na matuwid. There is no future, only a repetition of the present from mistakes of the past.

        The moment we get everyone in the same page, take risks on how to get to that destination and achieve goals, then we can start to really see some development.

      • Marv IN says:

        @Jay,

        I don’t know how you would get this interpretation.

        “If when that day comes and all we can say is “I told you so”. Mahihijack na naman ang future of this country.”

        Translated in English.

        If when that day comes and all we can say is “I told you so”. Once AGAIN the future of this country will be hijacked.

        Again emphasis on “AGAIN” or “na naman” in my original reply.

      • Jay says:

        YES I took your emphasis and came back at you with my emphasis on There is no real foundation. How do you build a future when you don’t even have the foundation for it, lest it gets hijacked?

        I’m understanding you bro. I think its you who did not understand that there was never a beginning to hijack a progress anyway.

      • Marv IN says:

        err… well in order to have a road you need to have a foundation but maybe you see differently.

        I firmly believe it’s possible to build a future even without a foundation although I’m not sure this makes our gap easier to understand as far as this idea that there never was a beginning is concerned.

        For me, a foundation of corruption is more detrimental to happiness and progress than having no foundation and each stage of corruption is in itself an attempt in hijacking progress even if the corruptors may not say be as intelligent or grand schemers as the best oligarchs of the world.

  15. potaters says:

    Well, I was in a certain trial court awhile ago and in their office, they had a TV which was turned on to ABS-CBN. Why would they need TV there? There are a lot of cases need attending to, seriously, why is there a TV?

    I think this article also highlights how a lot of Filipinos perceive happiness and how they disapprove/look down on those who don’t feel the same or those who don’t respond to what is making them happy. That’s certainly how I feel, I don’t derive happiness from boxing, Wowowee stupid dancing/songs etc. hence, they tell me that I’m so “serious”.

    • ChinoF says:

      Inside the courtroom? You mean the judge can see it? My golly… and I thought disco mobiles in the cemetery during All Saint’s Day was it. 

      • potaters says:

        No, it was not inside the courtroom, it was an office beside a courtroom. Office of the staffpeople of the judge. I just think that it prevents people to be more productive…

      • ChinoF says:

        Hehehe…. for a moment there I thought the judge wanted to see gyrating dancers while in court. But a TV in a court office… still out of place indeed. 

    • ilda says:

      I’m glad there are people who can relate to how I feel about these things potaters. Sadly, we are outnumbered. Or maybe there are some who feel the same way we do but are just too scared to say anything lest they lose their friends.

  16. boombox says:

    Nice article again ilda..
    I’m sharing this article and posted it on a local forum here in Cebu.
    I hope I can read balanced comments and reactions.. 🙂

    http://www.istorya.net/forums/politics-and-current-events/341196-filipinos-happy-go-lucky.html#post8705220

    • ilda says:

      Hey, thanks boombox. 🙂

      I checked it out and one of the comments on the forum said “wats making the economy bad is not those kind of people, its the people sitting on those fancy chairs in the gov.t who has nothing to do but to just relax wait for the money to come in and spend the money of the people”..

      hahaha…just like I said in the article! Who voted for the “people sitting on those fancy chairs in gov’t” anyway?

  17. NotMasochisticFilipino says:

    Maybe Filipinos are deep inside just happy the way things are, despite them blaming, cursing insulting people for their misery. After all, progress, success, growth, etc. does not necessarily mean happiness. Otherwise, the country would’ve made progress years ago if the people are really unhappy with the way things are.

    • ilda says:

      Some people take comfort in the fact that they can still blame someone for the ills of the nation. I don’t know how they will cope though once time proves that a President who says that he is not “corrupt” won’t be not enough to move the country forward especially since he is more incompetent than the previous one and is still into the “padrino” system. His administration is going to be even worse.

      Yes, “life ain’t that bad” for those who are ok with mediocrity – heavy traffic, corruption, pollution, overpopulation, red tape, & etc – some people have become accustomed to that lifestyle so they accept it as part of life and have learned to live with it. Those who do not know what they are missing, the people below the poverty line, are happy enough to continue drinking their Ginebra while toasting the neighbour’s askal.

    • ChinoF says:

      “Otherwise, the country would’ve made progress years ago if the people are really unhappy with the way things are.”

      Hmm…. now here’s one reason why the media wants to keep people “happy.” 

      • Marv IN says:

        Well…no. Otherwise it wouldn’t make sense for them to keep people in fear too. (especially for the media of richer countries)

        Media on the top most level is still about profits and in between there are people who just want to get higher in the totem pole so that they could either get easier tasks, more influence on news or exposure ensuring less job security risk as well as more leverage for how high their salary is.

        Remind you of any other system? *cough* political elections *cough*

        “Otherwise, the country would’ve made progress years ago if the people are really unhappy with the way things are.”

        Untrue. Look at Japan, they’e made HUGE progress due to their culture but that same culture is suffering now. 

        The people does not equal first and foremost = educated people.

        The educated people does not equal first and foremost = critical thinking people who haven’t been institutionalized by how schools and universities are

        The critical thinking people does not equal first and foremost = people who have the right maverick philosophy to give to this country something different than what other countries have been doing wrong.

        Finally, the people who are mavericks does not = people the general masses would vote for. Number 1 flaw of Democracy which is why the Republic was established: Tyranny of the masses.

        Only by having the right representatives who can then in turn agree and disagree upon what’s best not only for the citizens of a country but the citizens of each little barangay can progress truly be made. The main reason being not only is true progress fringe in modern society hence unpopular even in foreign countries but even if it’s been officially mandated, who is to say that the masses will understand that progress until the fruits mature? Especially the poor. How can they say a system is “for” them when the only clear cut system seems to be a system of governance that promises to “HELP” them?

        Let us not lose hope and assume that the deaf are happy with the one-eyed king when the deaf haven’t received the Bible for how the country is run yet. Kahit sa mga experts, do you really believe you can judge our poor citizens correctly if we are not even given a set of books explaining how everything should work and how everything is working in a flawed manner? Kahit sa mga elections, if supplies are lacking, is there an infrastructure in place showing how the citizens can make up for the supplies other than waiting for the next day to vote? There’s too many vague intangibles pa for us to over-simplify what Filipinoes want “deep inside”

      • ChinoF says:

        For me, I think the media is not all about profits, or just about money anymore… otherwise, they could have supported the free market and it would support an environment that would lead to better profits, because the consumer is able to spend more. It’s all about power. They control the masses and help keep them poor because it keeps them in power… and it keeps their allied businesses, like electricity, able to gouge prices and thus maintain power. They protect their earnings, yes, but not to really make them grow. Rather, they maintain the social system that keeps them rich and their consumers poor. The feelings of power seems integral to the security of the oligarchs. 

        But yes, let’s not lose hope. Not all are really “happy.” 

      • Marv IN says:

        @ChinoF (sorry I am unable to click a reply below your reply)

        “otherwise, they could have supported the free market and it would support an environment that would lead to better profits, because the consumer is able to spend more.”

        As you said: “It’s all about power.”

        Consumers may be able to spend more in a free market but it also means the media has to work harder to protect their earnings.

        Let us also not overrate what “the media” is. This is not an intelligent entity in the sense of a unified commune of thinkers all formed with the same goals. These are bureaucrats all eating away at each other, competing just as much within their own walled circle as much as they are competing for news.

        They are still all about money – they just aren’t hungry enough to serve journalism along with it. They have reached a position where they feel the current system is both best for their stability and both best for income generation with the least risks. Add all the human elements within said media and the culture and corporate politics and different agendas and the pace they have to serve the news – it’s just proof that it’s possible to be less greedy and yet be more hurtful towards the poor. They’re still in it for the money, still in it for the profits and yet they don’t realize what they are doing slows down their growth, slows down their profits or maybe they do but maintaining monopoly/status corrupts. Once you’re up there (and this is just my guess) it is scarier to fail while trying to grow bigger than it is to simply maintain the status that they have achieved while under the illusion that the latter is where the better profits lie.

      • ChinoF says:

        You still make sense though… they want it stable, no change… so media is corrupt too. ” Once you’re up there, it is scarier to fail.” – I think you’ve captured the oligarchs’ thoughts. 

      • ChinoF says:

        BTW… 
        “Untrue. Look at Japan, they’e made HUGE progress due to their culture but that same culture is suffering now.” 

        It’s really difficult to explain Japan’s success because of culture per se, because studies seem scant on it. Perhaps they used the right economic system for their needs (and they were powered by American investments). But studies are around saying that the culture changes when economic status changes (i.e., they become more well-to-do and richer). System change goes hand-in-hand with culture change. 

      • Marv IN says:

        True but it is difficult to explain any nation’s success or failure because of culture. Hence the need for economics.

        For example, there is is this fallacy that any booming nation is using the right economic system. (When in fact, Keynesian economics is why in the long term Japan is suffering now)

        “But studies are around saying that the culture changes when economic status changes (i.e., they become more well-to-do and richer). System change goes hand-in-hand with culture change.” 

        The problem with approaching studies in this way is that it assumes the latter is responsible for the former in a major way. What if the former is the one responsible for the latter?

        It is complicated and I’m not disagreeing with your statement as much as pointing out that the flaw of your post is that you don’t mention or factor in how:

        “Culture change can just as much go hand-in-hand with system change.”

        It’s not so much a flaw with sentences as much as this factor makes it impossible to use it for finding the solution to the economic problem of our country.

      • ChinoF says:

        Yeah, it’s complicated. And change can’t occur in just one area. We need to attack all at once – whether system, culture and media, and more. 

    • Jay says:

      Happiness of course can’t really be measured. But it has been long ingrained in culture and society what it means for individuals and how the system serves these people for that.

      Untrue. Look at Japan, they’e made HUGE progress due to their culture but that same culture is suffering now.

      It is something that certainly can be fixed and is willing to be given effort to do so. Its a testament considering they managed to change in a rapid pace after losing the war. Look at the Philippines. Many will still claim reasons for excuses, such as being a young nation of only what, 60 years old or so? But look how it has regressed for the nation and its people? The nation has not done anything significant as a collective to help usurp real long term change.

  18. dumb-oh says:

    you are not alone po. People I know that gave me that are-you-mad look last campaign season. What hurts is that they are my family and friends. Bawal ang bumatikos kay Pnoy.

  19. Pugot says:

    ilda,
    Would you write (in case you have not) or any of the bloggers here, something about missed-opportunities our country commits time and time again. For example, how the Americans introduced the cars and the trolley system yet we chose to mass produce jeeps to clog our streets rather than being an exporter of cars and having an effective public transportation system. How we were the first airline in Asia and we could have been an aviation center in the far east. When China closed its doors, Vietnam erupted in a civil war and Korea torn in half, how we managed not to invite more corporations in every province in the Philippines.

    Have we really lost many intelligent and innovative Filipinos that all we are left with are deluded idiots who think they are gods?

  20. Maki_Alam says:

    I think the phrase “happy as a pig in shit” describes us perfectly. We’re wallowing in our own filth and enjoying every minute of it.

    • ChinoF says:

      Yeah, you got it. That’s what the Wowowee type-shows and “konyari happy culture” are teaching the people, so that by wallowing in false happiness, they will forget any inkling of change at all. It lulls them into inaction. 

  21. ScrappyHappyDappyPinay says:

    I can see where you are coming from with regards to “shallow happiness,” our tendency for escapism because everything around us is topsy turvy. Pretty much the same reaction most people will do when they used up their credit cards to the hilt and the bills just keeps piling on. But I think you are judging PNoy too harshly. I mean it is early days to form an opinion and it is a bit unrealistic to expect him to solve all of our country’s problems in a span of 6 months – what do you want him to do? wave a magic wand? Even the Parliament are given more time than that to effect change. 

    What I would wish for countrymen to see is that part of being happy is to be honest with oneself and comfy enough to face our inadequacies as a nation and find the solution. Only then can we assured of continued happiness. 

    • ilda says:

      @ScrappyHappyDappyPinay

      Glad to know you get my point about instant gratification.

      As to P-Noy, a lot of people misunderstand our criticism of him. We are not expecting major changes in such a short span of time. We are simply pointing out his inadequacies and none-stop gaffes.

      What we do expect from him is a bit of professionalism; for him to live up to his promise to go on the “straight path”; for him to give the people his vision and plans for cultural and economic reforms. For the last six months, he has exhibited un-statesman like behavior particularly with his smiling dog behavior and arrogance with Donald Tsang after the hostage fiasco and his latest one with him slamming world leaders who issued travel warnings against the Phils.

      For the last six months he has been preoccupied too with defending his incompetent staffs/friends like Puno, Mislang and now the tourism secretary for their fiasco. Not to mention the fact that instead of being productive, he never fails to blame GMA for everything that is happening even for his own error of judgment.

      P-Noy as the leader should set the tone for the rest of our countrymen to “ be honest with oneself and comfy enough to face our inadequacies as a nation and find the solution.”

      I already knew P-Noy wasn’t going to be good for the economy waaay back before the election. Please click on the link below:

      Noynoy Aquino is bad for the economy according to Bloomberg.com

      • ScrappyHappyDappyPinay says:

        Fair enough, if it is being critical about his unstatesman-like conduct which does not inspire confidence then I agree with you especially with the Mislang issue. I really want to cower my head in shame after I read that in the papers. I almost wish that we have the same media censorship as China. But labelling him incompetent without seeing how he runs the country in the next few years is a bit unfair in my opinion so I would rather wait and see first before I comment on that.

      • ilda says:

        I for one do not need to wait for a few more years to know that he will not make a big difference. He is not even aware of the fact that he is also practicing the padrino system, which is the very thing that is keeping our society from moving forward.

      • ChinoF says:

        Well, the incompetence can be seen now. Even if he improves his performance later on, the fact remains that he was incompetent during the first part. And this is running a country… slack must never be given to a national leader. He’s supposed to deliver top-notch performance from day one, because that’s his job. 

      • Homer says:

        “I almost wish that we have the same media censorship as China.”

        Hmm, you might wanna think about giving that wish a lot more thought.

  22. jose acelajado says:

    I do appreciate your way impression about how many Filipinos seem to value or put substance to what happiness means, it could be true somehow, however, in putting into conclusion and stating that, ” Having an incompetent leader like President Noynoy Aquino for example, is a situation that has more dark side than bright side… ” for me is simply unfair, as no one among us really knows who is incompetent or not…and, which situation has more dark side than bright side…,with the exception of course of the One All above us…”. Please, no offense meant, as I do respect it as your own personal opinion.
    3D7v
    3D7v

    • ilda says:

      @Jose

      No offense taken. I just can’t believe that despite all the gaffes P-Noy and his staff have been committing since day one (and even before he was inaugurated), there are still people who can’t see the level of his incompetence. He has no plans or vision for the much needed cultural and economic reforms to move our country forward. I don’t know how anyone can be in denial of that.

      What he is doing now is basic functions of the Presidency like representing the country in summits and forums. He is just literally there in Malacanang doing nothing that will transform the country into a more competitive nation.

      • chayo says:

        I agree, Filipinos seem to have mastered the skill of massaging their blind spots with superficial entertainments. Point out an aberration and the typical Filipino will argue beside the point. To conclude an iffy conversation, you’re bound to get something like, “Oh, well, that’s the way the ball bounces,” or “Leave it to God.”

        In my view of a foreigner married to a Filipino, I see that the propensity to blame everyone and everything else, but not themselves, does make one’s miserable life more bearable. Filipinos love to use the expression, “Yan ang kapalaran, ” (That’s our lot in life). Yes, resigned fatalism deadens the drive for achievement.

      • ilda says:

        @chayo

        “Yes, resigned fatalism deadens the drive for achievement

        Indeed. Unfortunately, religion has a lot to do with that resigned fatalism. It has turned us into flaccid inhabitants of this tropical paradise with its equally stifling humidity.

  23. Coy says:

    What is the purpose of antipinoy propaganda? Smart Filipinos will get what you are saying. You are basically saying stop being happy on something shallow, we should be happy IF EVER some Filipino made a notable invention and most are ignorant so they vote that politician.. Guess what you are more shallow. Majority of Filipinos are poor. Poverty causes ignorance, and in that comes a Domino effect. If you want change try teaching poor Filipinos  in a way that they will understand. Not just posting some article/blog to disgrace a nation who is not genetically intelligent as Japanese or Americans, etc. (Sorry to say it but it’s the truth) I read you put “Our”, I guess you are also Filipino (or before). Well if you are waiting for someone to read your blog to be enlighten and do something different I guess it won’t happen. Just go to Australia as you kept mentioning. I heard before a colleague of mine saying for the Philippines to change you need to be brutal. “Eliminate bad apples from the good one”. Until then, you just hope that more intelligent Filipino are born and people with dignity will surface. Then hope they will be a majority. Or some super-intelligent that have the ultimate leadership skills will be a president. And also with integrity..

    • ilda says:

      @Coy

      …”not just posting some article/blog to disgrace a nation who is not genetically intelligent as Japanese or Americans, etc.

      Wow! You might be on to something here. Is that why members of the elite who are educated campaigned for P-Noy? But your statement above contradicts your other statement, “Poverty causes ignorance.” It’s not lack of opportunity that made these so-called members of the “elite” ignorant you know.

      This just proves what we have been saying all along: rich or poor, educated or uneducated Pinoys are stunted by our dysfunctional Filipino culture.

      So I guess the above statement justifies publishing an article to highlight the need to change the culture.

      Good luck with your campaign to eliminate the bad apples. You can’t even identify who they are.

    • ChinoF says:

      “not just posting some article/blog to disgrace a nation who is not genetically intelligent as Japanese or Americans, etc.”

      Haha, who taught you this? This is racism and we in this blog don’t believe it. If you believe it, I feel sorry for you. 😉 

      “I heard before a colleague of mine saying for the Philippines to change you need to be brutal.”

      Ampatuan and Marcos were brutal, but they certainly didn’t bring about change. Charter change is a less brutal solution. 

  24. blahblah says:

    Whose bad apples? Kumain ba kayo ng ampalaya kaya ang bitter niyo sa Pilipino. Punta na lang kayo sa Pilipinas and be involve. Run for President or do something before you comment. You have all the right to criticize us because you are the most idiot and the most poor people who can’t appreciate HAPPINESS or maybe you are all absent when your professors taught the right to respect ones culture. Stop being BITTER and let’s ENJOY FRIENDS maybe you all have to manage your stress. We’ll help you get through it. Love you all!! WORLD PEACE BRO!!!!

    • ChinoF says:

      ” Run for President or do something before you comment.” 

      You mean, become part of government? But that’s what people loyal to the current admin did, after being staunch activists. And look at what happened. It’s a mess. Being part of government is not a solution when government is part of the problem. 

      Besides, if you can’t take criticism, it just proves this article right… you can’t accept the truth. 

      “The right to respect ones culture.” – In Africa, they practice female circumcision. It’s part of their culture, their excuse to keep doing it. Knowing our own orientation towards decency, would you respect that kind of culture? 

      My advice to you… think before you react. 😉 

      • blahblah says:

        kaya nga we dare you to run. Para di kayo comment na lang ng comment. What I mean is kung gusto mong may mabago i-try mo baka sakaling sa term mo mawala na ang mga angst nyo sa amin. diba? I take criticisms if it’s believably true but if it’s not of course we seek for a little bit democracy on this matter. I have nothing against all sorts of activities from differenct culture kaya no problem kahit magpa-circumcize pa ang mga female sa Africa. If that’s the way they practice it so be it. No problem with that.

      • ilda says:

        @blahblah

        Unfortunately, none of the AP writers or fans will win the election because Filipino voters are anti-intellectual 😉 Gordon, Perlas and Gibo who have better credentials tried running for the Presidency last May but they lost to an incompetent non-performing former Senator.

        Read the below article if you find that statement hard to believe:

        Noynoy Aquino’s supporters: are they anti-intellectual?

      • ChinoF says:

        There were good people already running, as Ilda indicated, but they were not voted in. Besides, those people in Black and White tried your advice, but as you see, they screwed up big time. Being in government is not a solution when the government system is screwed up, as I said. 

        Let me turn it back to you, why don’t you run? Is it because you can’t blog as nicely as we can? 😉 😛 

        ” I have nothing against all sorts of activities from differenct culture kaya no problem kahit magpa-circumcize pa ang mga female sa Africa. If that’s the way they practice it so be it.”

        Yun nga eh, alam mong mali, but you’ll not be against it? Tells a lot about your principles. With this comment, I doubt your sense of ethics. Looks like you’ve got your own case of useless “blahs blahs.: 😉 

    • Marv IN says:

      “Whose bad apples? Kumain ba kayo ng ampalaya kaya ang bitter niyo sa Pilipino. Punta na lang kayo sa Pilipinas and be involve. Run for President or do something before you comment. You have all the right to criticize us because you are the most idiot and the most poor people who can’t appreciate HAPPINESS or maybe you are all absent when your professors taught the right to respect ones culture. Stop being BITTER and let’s ENJOY FRIENDS maybe you all have to manage your stress. We’ll help you get through it. Love you all!! WORLD PEACE BRO!!!!”

      I would run for President and I am sure many well intentioned poor people if given the choice between running for President vs. running for barangay capt./activist leader/etc. etc. would choose to run for President if the price were merely free.

      As ChinoF stated, government is part of the problem but to expand on his words – government structure IS part of the problem.

      Hindi lang basta basta naisipan ng mga corrupt na pulitiko na maging corrupt kaya magulo ang Pinas.

      Lampas pa ang problema natin. Commenting is not enough. Doing is not enough. Bitterness is not enough. Shouting for World Peace is not enough. Loving us all is not enough. Kaya as much as you would prefer that someone does one or another, unfortunately we need everything even AP articles…even you commenting against AP articles…plus a whole lot more. 

  25. bubi78 says:

    Our penchant for superficial and overt display of “happiness,” if we dig deep enough into our history, can be traced back to the days of the Spanish friars; they were the ones who started it all by giving each town its own patron saint to venerate and to celebrate, but this is not to say that our pre-Hispanic ancestors were not partial to celebrations at all. The Spanish friars, on the sly, simply “Christianized” the pagan practices of the natives and the rest is history so to speak. The Filipinos were so enthralled with their fiestas that it took them centuries to rise up against Spanish rule…the fiesta was, and still is, a very effective tool to keep the people in check, to keep the people numb and dumb to their miseries by giving them a superficial feeling of contentment and happiness. Who will rebel when the master, during the much anticipated fiesta, feeds half the town and dish out zarzuelas for all to enjoy? Who will dare question the wisdom of the priest who gives out benedictions in the name of the patron saint? Only a killjoy would do that, and the people would surely look askance at the person who would spoil their revelry. And, so it goes today with the powers that be dishing out their concert-cum-rallies with packed lunches and other freebies to go. The oligarchs, with their virtual control of the mass media, are at it too with their television and radio stations bombarding the people senseless with their daily dose of canned happiness. It is no surprise then that the people have a very low baseline of happiness; conspiracy theory aside, it all boils down to the control of and the conditioning of the people’s mind. Only a select few will venture out to seek real happiness, happiness in the sense of self-realization or individual pleasure, in the mean time it’s back to the eighty’s catchword, “don’t worry, be happy.”

    • ChinoF says:

      Good explanation here. 

      No wonder we have the phrase, “ang babaw ng kaligayahan.” 

      • Artemio says:

        The 3 groups of people I consider to be “mababaw ang kaligayahan” are kids (?), retards, and masang Pinoy. These groups are not necessarily mutually exclusive. One may belong to either 2 or all groups. Retards believe they are happy because they are clueless on what they are actually missing–same with masang Pinoy. Some kids may even turn out to be wiser.

    • ilda says:

      Another insightful comment from Mr bubi78.

      I’m so glad you don’t think I am a killjoy 🙂

  26. killem says:

    the main purpose of fiesta back then is to lure those living in far flung area to come to town so that indoctrination of catholic faith will be much easier. the rest is merely incidental…..

    with regards to happiness, no person has the right to judge what is “happiness” only from his sole prospective or from their group prospective…. happiness is an individual feeling.. being a “mababaw na kaligayahan” is much better than a person who pursuit all the wealth in the world, and still end up miserable and unsatisfied…
    @blahblah, finally someone here does make sense…. if you want change, its the action that produce change, not word or in this case blog entries…besides why would pinoy believe some ap articles when it was written by a person who sits comfortably in foreign land, examining the pinoy like we are in a petridish.. and worse, he/she swear allegiance to other states.
    with regards to election, please be aware of form of government is democracy and not meritocracy… people are elected by majority vote of the people, and not based on their merit

    • ilda says:

      And you think that writing thought provoking articles is not action? Whether you agree with the articles or not is beside the point. It’s about giving Filipinos another point of view aside from what they get from the mainstream media. It’s so narrow minded of you to conclude that all AP writers are overseas just because you don’t understand the message. And I don’t really see your point in bringing it up.

      You obviously don’t get the gist of the article because you think that I am just against “mababaw na kaligayahan”. It would be better if Filipinos were truly mababaw in the sense that they feel happy without having to hold fiestas more often than necessary or purchase material possessions they don’t need that drain their wallet.

      You sound like you are very happy with the way things are in the country even if the majority votes for incompetent leaders and even if there has been no progress.

      Take it easy on the telenovelas or whatever it is you are taking because it’s giving you the impression that people who make lots of money are miserable and unsatisfied. You sound very ignorant with your comment.

    • ChinoF says:

      “being a “mababaw na kaligayahan” is much better than a person who pursuit all the wealth in the world, and still end up miserable and unsatisfied…”

      It gets disproved when the person na “mababaw ang kaligayahan” dies of starvation the next day. You have to be alive to be happy. Dead people are not sad… but they’re not happy either. 

      “with regards to election, please be aware of form of government is democracy and not meritocracy… people are elected by majority vote of the people, and not based on their merit”

      That’s one reason why our country is in the pits. 

      “@blahblah, finally someone here does make sense….”

      I’m trying to find that sense, but it’s eluding me. 😛 

      We’ll keep on blogging despite your pathetic protests. 😉 

    • Maki_Alam says:

      “with regards to election, please be aware of form of government is democracy and not meritocracy… people are elected by majority vote of the people, and not based on their merit”

      It’s not even by majority vote because we have a gazillion candidates. If 30 million Filipinos voted for the eventual winner, that means 60 million didn’t (assuming 90 million Filipinos voted). So the new president may have had the most number of votes, but certainly not the majority. You want a real majority vote, there should be only two candidates, like how they do it in America.

      • ilda says:

        Indeed, Maki_Alam.

        Likewise, there are still doubts about the reliability of the first computer counting machines. Some groups still insist that the election was rigged. Not to mention the rampant vote buying and thuggery that happens in small towns.

      • Marv IN says:

        “You want a real majority vote, there should be only two candidates, like how they do it in America.”

        Actually this is false. I didn’t keep the links but there are sites like these which show how they have problems with their voting there too: http://blackboxvoting.org/

        Of course this depends on what a real majority vote really is. 

        In America, there’s still the electoral vote. Mixed with this, the top 2 candidates are often not the most popular but rather align with the two most popular parties hence the illusion.

        Finally because of the way the 2 party system works and how they are even more entrenched in the media, you can be the most popular candidate but be on a third party and have no chance of being voted because of the lack of media presence. (Since debates there are more credible than the Philippines – although it is still a joke – and a third party candidate is rarely interviewed/invited combined with it being easier to vote the most likely to win candidate combined finally with how people tend to not care about the elections until there are only two candidates…suffice to say it is even more of a mess than it is here in the Philippines but they have a more elite set of candidates running. Elite in the sense of corporate backers and PR firms and attack ad makers.) 

      • Maki_Alam says:

        “you can be the most popular candidate but be on a third party and have no chance of being voted because of the lack of media presence”

        How can a candidate be the most popular if he lacks media presence and people aren’t aware of him? Maybe you meant ‘the most competent candidate’? And as we all know, ‘most popular’ doesn’t always equate to ‘most competent’.

        Indeed, the electoral college seems unfair and far more confusing than our own system. But I think it became a real contentious issue during the Bush/Gore election because it’s rare for the candidate who got the popular vote to lose the electoral vote, the Florida fiasco notwithstanding. I think it was only the fourth time that’s ever happened in US history. It’s the exception rather than the rule. Usually, whoever gets the popular vote also gets the electoral vote.

        I didn’t mean we should adopt the electoral college. Clearly, as in the case of Bush and Gore, it’s not a foolproof way of ensuring the guy who gets the most votes actually wins. All I’m saying is, it’s easier to determine the people’s choice by having only two candidates. It’s easier to compare and see how the votes stack up against each other, rather than having the votes dispersed among a greater number of candidates.

        I should have said, “You want a real majority vote, there should be only two candidates.” Period. By adding, “like how they do it in America”, I may have inadvertently caused more confusion. Sorry.

      • Marv IN says:

        @Maki_Alam

        “How can a candidate be the most popular if he lacks media presence and people aren’t aware of him?”

        No, I literally mean the most popular.

        Please keep in mind though that I haven’t been to the US and I only have a vague picture of how this works and like with Bush vs. Gore – you could technically say it’s rare to none just because it rarely happens at the late stage of an election.

        Basically even if you set aside the electoral college, there’s this whole thing about being registered as a voter and how the system can inconvenience the voting population as well as convenience them to vote towards the two dominant parties.

        Please keep in mind that this is a whole lot more troublesome than it is over here in the Philippines because although you can say Americans are more developed infrastructurally – you have to add size + more strategic politicians into the mix who are backed by lobbyists which means whoever has a head start not only become more exposed but they have more resources to expose themselves further.

        With this in mind, you have this gargantuan set of stages to overcome compared to the competition in the Philippines.

        The 1st stage is the most equal. This basically means the non-notable candidates don’t get much publicity but the notable ones do. Keep in mind that even the notable third party candidates can often off-set lack of traditional media exposure because the voting population is more media reliant and have easier access to the internet and debates/issues are more important/pseudo-important to them. Still lots of apathetic voters but their scandals there are often issues well above our own both in degree of severity and notability as well as degree of covering up said scandal. Anyway this 1st stage is the one you probably have in mind.

        The 2nd stage is where it gets complicated because you’re not even at the middle of your campaign yet and yet it could stretch up to the late point of the campaign. Just to compare the two at the surface level, most presidents here when campaigning don’t really have to contend with the different identities of our nation as often times how you are perceived in Manila is how you are perceived in Visayas and Mindanao. Not to the point that you can ignore those areas but in America you’ll often hear this talk about bases. On the overview level, it seems like a simple game of RISK – capture territory, get voters.

        In actuality this can be troublesome because you’re dealing with the after effects of the majority two parties PLUS how you are registered PLUS the same trouble we have locally except supplies are less problematic on the input stage but can be sloppily guarded after that.

        Here’s an anecdotal example: I’ve read that in some areas you have to be registered democrat to vote democrat. This means that if you want to vote a republican president in but once past the presidential candidate you want to vote democrat…well…you’re jumping through hoops that can depend per state.

        Then factor in how annoying the ads are and unless you have this recession issue currently or the Tea Party movement… well most people may be for one president over another simply because they are the most annoying. Then factor in common things like voting for the lesser evils, finding your name is not on the ballot, perception that if you switch from the two main parties to the third party means you’ve admitted you are the loser of two main party and you have this big confusion among your supporters regardless if your name is the most popular or not. This doesn’t even factor the magnitude of how a voting population the size of America would consider things like shouting over the crowd as it happened to Howard Dean or how they would prefer the unpopular but dumber more common man choice as it happened when Dean lost to Kerry which lead to Kerry-Bush which lead to Bush beating Kerry. (Note that in each stage of this name people have ADD on the former especially since majority are still just waiting for the last two candidates before actually trying to join the voting process)

        Finally the late stage and this is where it gets the deadliest. Why do you think there’s only two candidates? Do you think it has always been this way?

        Watch this “1992” Presidential Debate: http://video.google.com/videoplay?docid=8606672422143118757#

        How many candidates are there?

        BUT it doesn’t matter. Here’s how relative majority works when it comes to the third party.

        Yes, you are right that beyond two is more confusing but if you only have two which two?

        This is where the two party system falls apart. Initially and it may not seem like a big deal here in the Philippines because we don’t have a true HUGE party yet (setting aside the Catholic Church) and candidates just jump from one party to another but in America initially there weren’t technically two parties hence the final two candidates were much more like the top two candidates that are popular/have money to continue to campaign.

        Then one day because it kept ending as two candidates, politicians gamed the system in such a way that the two candidates are guaranteed to be from two parties. These two parties being primarily formed in the same way the tyranny of the majority is formed in democracies. This may be too much of an over-simplification since there were alot of major events in between but bottomline when people expected just two candidates, it was like a go signal for the two largest political groups to eat up the smaller groups and form one big party on one side and one big party on the other side and thus devolves the lack of a true voting system because either one of the groups would just eat up any of the upstart groups if they become large enough and the culture aftermath that resulted from that is how you have the two party system of today where they just add to the baggage of confusion so that they remain in power. Ex. the electoral college to further guarantee that it will be harder for a third party to overtake their candidates.

        Now what if a third party candidate becomes so popular that he is able to appeal to the majority of one group? (You can rarely appeal to both groups because the people are so invested in their groups that it’s like Christians vs. Atheist. There are vague centrist like candidates like Obama but that’s another complicated and unrelated issue of corruption)

        Well anyway, think of it like a pie. If there used to be a 50/50 slice and then suddenly a new cut won the relative majority and say got 25 of one side and got 50 on the other… he should technically have the relative majority in that sense and be the most popular and get a win right? Far from it because even at the late stage of the campaign process, there’s no such thing as guaranteed voters and the influence of the two dominant parties who’ve become very powerful by now will continue to tweak the impression of the news towards either of those two parties…unless the popular third party candidate is also backed by a popular third party that is backed by a popular third party media but if he is, the two parties would be trying to hijack that party anyway. 

        It all becomes a jumbled mess at this point but it’s what the media of America often mean by “spoiler”. Technically if the pie is finite and the voting culture is rational and set in a static coma once they’ve decided on who to vote – the polls would reflect and report this and cause people to just vote on one of the two candidates. 

        But people are easily influenced and this is not factoring people who just aren’t into politics. Even the hardcore informed voters by saying they won’t choose one of two parties will indirectly cause people who may be on one of the two parties to switch between either one of the third party or the other big party. Say Republicans will be split between switching to the Tea Party or the Democrats. The point between how and where they switch is still an influencing point because while they are considering their pie, they may make one of the big parties smaller but the other big party BIGGER. They may also not have their votes registered because they passed the deadline of switching to another party. The polls would also trick the undecided that “no revolution was being advertised” and hence unless you are really really really informed – the only realistic entry point for the most popular third party candidate to impact the current election is to be exposed but still lose, cause voters to be less apathetic and hopefully continue to expand their base next election, and finally after all that hopefully they would stand a much better chance next election season. Of course in between that season, the two bigger parties will be trying to eat them up. They will be trying to hijack the message of that party and make it their own. Finally, even if they can’t succeed there, the two dominant parties will try their best to keep the third party from expanding their base while the two dominant parties help each other expand theirs. All this amounts to is that barring a disaster like the one America is currently in, the longer a system of two candidates prolong, the less it’s about stacking votes and more about converting the two candidates into two parties that just have different representatives once their terms are up just so they can say “you’re switching it up every once in a while like a teleserye between GMA and ABS”.

        I apologize if this reads too long but it’s really this complicated in there based only on what I know and I even omitted all other details like how the Neo-cons hijack the Republican party which was another significant shift in power, how Obama took a vague centrist route and became the most popular candidate and yet didn’t face the toughest candidate because the GOP fearing a brokered convention forced the top candidate in Romney to step down and then the thing with Howard Dean, Ross Perot, Barry Goldwater, Ronald Reagan… it makes the tale of our corrupt presidents here seem like child’s play because even if we had a major event like the impeachment of Erap – it’s all in the narrative of when will we have a president who will save/uplift us where as America’s election stories often have an additional depth of what the president’s issues are all about. Bush Jr.’s tale is the closest thing they have to a simple fairy tale about an incompetent president and he is regarded as a joke where we are still often undecided where the post-Marcos presidents are really placed when it comes to competence.

      • Marv IN says:

        Meant to say:

        “Technically if the pie is finite and the voting culture is rational and set in a static coma once they’ve decided on who to vote – the polls would reflect and report this and cause people to vote on the most popular person regardless of which party they are affiliated with”

      • Maki_Alam says:

        “Yes, you are right that beyond two is more confusing but if you only have two which two?”

        Yeah, well, that’s a whole other discussion right there. 😀

      • killem says:

        what im talking about is relative majority and not absolute majority.

        im not familiar with us electoral system, but from what i heard even if you obtain the majority of vote cast, you still not sure that you will win. like in the case bush vs al gore.

      • Marv IN says:

        Yeah, that’s what electoral votes mean. Here’s the Wikipedia article: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Electoral_College_(United_States)

        Just keep in mind with regards to Bush vs. Gore, it’s not so much the system but a (potential) violation of the system which was disputed. 

        Also because it was a problem of the state as a whole and not one form of voting over another, Gore would still have lost via losing Florida. That’s where the whole recount controversy comes in. Technically even in a majority voting system, whoever won Florida would still count as the one who won over the majority of the votes (in Florida). 

        That’s why the dispute concerned was about recounting the votes and not so much removing the electoral votes. (Although the latter only made it more confusing which is why I feel America’s voting system is worse than ours): http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bush_vs._Gore

        “what im talking about is relative majority and not absolute majority.”

        I’m not the one who brought this up and personally I feel this is nitpicking on the details which is why I’m wondering which form of majority voting is being discussed but pedantically there’s no such thing as relative or absolute majority in a successful non-impeachment term.

        That is to say, if the voting and the winner is decided, regardless if there are angry people at the result it’s still “relative absolute” majority if everyone accepts the winner as president of their country.

        Both terms are also fallacious in that you can’t have a majority who’s 100% for the president hence all absolute majority are relative majority. On the flip side, there’s no true relative majority of votes because we’re not even sure how secure our voting system is for one. Next, the farther we are from Manila, the worse the structure is with things like delayed supplies, threatened votes, identities not registering, vote counters counting mostly in the dark and then an uninformed population who doesn’t know how to verify or inform themselves on which person they are voting. Actually the same goes for the rest of the world only we have other voting infrastructure level problems to compound that problem.

        Nonetheless, I would like to just interject this notion when discussing about a “better” system: Please consider “Tyranny of the Majority” – http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tyranny_of_the_majority

        Sure we have more pressing matters in being threatened by Bureaucracy but the road to a better system is not achieved via getting the majority’s votes. Absolute or otherwise. 

  27. simplesimon says:

    @Ilda

    Palusot ka pa that’s so AP of you to NOT Admitting your mistakes so you mean to say Erap ran for mayor in 1969 kasi naging governor si Reagan in 1967 hahaha

    The funny thing about AP peeps is that they want regular pinoys to admit their “mistakes”

    But when we point out “your mistakes” you try to wiggle out of it like lizards and never want to admit them.

    @Celebrities becoming politicians

    Unfortunately most politics is all a popularity contest and that’s that in an ideal world you่’d choose the best and smartest but rarely ever happens

    But if i had to choose among you here I am in favor of MarvIN and MakiAlam

    • ilda says:

      As usual, your comments have no point 😉

    • ChinoF says:

      “Unfortunately most politics is all a popularity contest and that’s that in an ideal world you่’d choose the best and smartest but rarely ever happen.”

      But other systems of government actually reduce the popularity factor more and cause voters to choose who gives them the policies they want instead of who’s a famous actor. Or even if the person is a famous actor, they have to be smart – giving the people the right policies. Parliamentary is like that. That’s why were for it. 

  28. charpierre says:

    Hi, ilda.
    Na remind ako na huwag tumigil maging productive. Sa pamamagitan ng paggamit sa oras ko sa mga mas mahalagang bagay, uunlad ang pagkatao ko at ang buhay ko. Please keep sending me your articles. Maraming salamat.

  29. ChinoF says:

    I just had this idea (after reading a textbook on sexuality, hehe). The ability to give pleasure or happiness can also be a form of control over someone. If the person goes somewhere else and does not find “happiness,” they will go back to the person or entity giving them happiness, because they are unable to cope with the “unhappiness” outside. Or they are deceived that the outside is “unhappy.” This is the formula I believe the media use. If we could empower more people to believe going away from what media presents is not necessarily “unhappiness,” then it may be easier to help them get away from it. 

    Perhaps confusing happiness and pleasure is a problem in Filipino culture too. And yet another media ploy.

    • ilda says:

      I guess the best advise is: people shouldn’t stick with someone who is not really into them. Or people should not stick with something that is not really working.

      A lot of Filipinos just want to stick with what they have/ know because they are either resigned to their fate, too lazy to change or too comfortable in their situation.

  30. simplesimon says:

    So why bother? What’s the point really?

    You have reflected on these degrading articles here that the Filipinos are beyond saving, a hopeless case of being mababaw, bakya, wowowee, bobo, morons, idiots and all other worse adjectives you can find in the dictionary….

    According to your various descriptions here and blah blah blah hanggang magunaw na ang mundo, wala nang pag-asa ang Pinoy di ba? Why waste time and effort, bakit ipa-repair kung di na ma-repair?

    Since you are painting a “lovely” picture that PInas is like the worst country in the world, just pack your bags AP and move to “better countries” in Africa or the deepest jungles in the Amazon or some tiny countries that you think may be “better” than the Philippines maybe those countries are still worth saving, the question is tatanggapin ba kaya kayo doon? Good luck!

    • ilda says:

      You are confused again Mr Simplesimon.

      I don’t write articles to degrade our compatriots. I merely write articles that point out how and why Filipinos degrade themselves.

      I even give recommendations on how they can avoid degrading themselves but since they continue to behave in the same manner, they become a hopeless case.

  31. simplesimon says:

    The unthinkable has happened, I have finally converted to an AP, good news to you guys!

    I  have been reading a lot of the articles here and now I can just laugh it all off coz you guys are really funny especially when someone commented earlier that there must be something wrong with us “genetically” and I thought about that for a while and concluded that it could be true 🙂

    ——–Look at our history——–
    It is believed that we evolved from the Negritos, there you go. Baluga, Aetas, Igorots, those were our real ancestors worshipping Anitos and believed in witchcraft and strange beliefs and superstitions. Then as we all know, the Chinese, the Malays, the Indians, the Spaniards, the Americans and the Japanese came.
    Captain America kept rescuing us from the “foreign occupants” most significantly against the Spaniards and the Japanese.
    Ok let’s talk about the Spaniards, yes they introduced Christianity making us the only Christian nation in Asia, is that good or bad? Depends on how you look at it, but no divorce and no birth control that just about sums it up for you. Like someone said “I like your Christ but I don’t like your Christians”
    The Spaniards and Portuguese, yes more than 300 years undesirable occupants in the Philippines, but they stayed on and left us with so many of our current attitude towards life. If you travel around the world particularly in Central and South America, those Latino countries are very, very, very similar to our culture. Take for example Mexico, Colombia and Brazil. There are tons of wowowee types and tambays and probably worse, notorious drug dealers and such that you can’t even imagine, jails are full to the brim and corruption in the government may be comparable to ours or like I said maybe even worse. Spanish influence? Maybe so, is there any Latino country that excels in science and technology? I don’t want to assume like Ilda does all the time so give me some feedback on that if you find any info.

    ——–Look at our geography——–
    Wow this is a tough one, imagine trying to unite 92 million Igorots, Aetas, Balugas, Negritos, Chinese, Indians, Muslims, Spanish mestizos, living in 7,107 islands speaking more than 58 dialects. Good luck on that one. 
    People living in tropical countries similar to ours tend to be in the laid back mood just like the people in Palau, Saipan and Guam and most famously the Hawaiians and the Maoris. Aside from being a US state, were it not for all the money the US and Japanese and other foreign countries pump into Hawaii’s tourism industry they won’t be where they are now. Duuude, those are the people who are in the TAMBAY mode all day maaaan. Wasup?
    Look at the G8, what is the common denominator? They all have 4 seasons. We have 2. There are no tropical countries in the G8. People living in countries with 4 seasons tend to work harder because they know summer won’t last long and they have to work their ass off in preparation for the cold season. 
    Believe it or not the weather has a major major effect on people’s productivity and attitude.

    There are  many more factors to discuss why we are what we are but I have to go back to work now LOL but you catch my drift critical thinkers?

    By the way, a wild thought came to my head just now, can you imagine if Japan didn’t lose the war when finally after wreaking havoc and killing our some of grandfathers with bayonets and raping our women, Captain America forced them to surrender after dropping Fat Man on Nagasaki and Little Boy on Hiroshima, Japan could have conquered the whole of Asia and made us into slaves making electronic gadgets, building advanced railways and bullet trains for their Emperor.

    But of course we chose “freedom”

    Sad isn’t it?

    So you want a Parliamentary Govt.? Here’s a clue, psssst look at Hong Kong thanks to the Brits they are under a Parliamentary Govt. For us to change governments I bet we need approval from Captain America first because our leaders are lame puppets anyways 🙂 

    CONCLUSIONThanks to AP and your Clockwork Orange treatment I have been cured, whenever I hear someone say “I am proud to be Filipino” I question it now because I am no longer proud to be a Filipino really.
    And the sad thing is, I am no longer “happy”
     
    Can you imagine your power over people’s minds? If you keep succeeding, there will be no more Filipinos by the year 2080 🙂 we would have all migrated like a flock of birds and never came back….

    • benign0 says:

      Hey, congratulations Mr simplesimon. Another soul saved from the clutches of Pinoy-style primitivist thinking. I live for moments like these. 😀

      Indeed, perhaps Pinoys were never meant to be a sovereign people as evident in our renowned ability to make it big as migrants but fail miserably when governed by our own compatriots.

      But, see, your journey has only begun, believe it or not. Think of the next phase in your intellectual awakening as kind of like regarding the hole in the ground after a successful demolition job. Now is the time to build and this time it is along the lines of the mantra of a true architect:

      Build it right the first time.

      Since you have successfully demolished the flawed thinking that had earlier imprisoned your mind, you are now free to design a truly enlightened thinking framework for yourself from the ground up.

      Ain’t it great? Look forward to seeing you hitch a ride with us for that truly outstanding cruise down the enlightened path that you are about to take.

    • ilda says:

      Good on you simplesimon. Even though you still managed to insult me. But that’s ok because you are starting to dig deeper into the “why.”

      It’s really amazing how much more information a person can absorb when he has calmed down. Anger always gets in the way of common sense. 😉

      Our situation is really convoluted. But it boils down to our dysfunctional culture more than anything else. We are trapped in the padrino system perhaps because our colonial masters really wanted us divided from the very start. It makes sense since it was easier to subdue us that way. Since the archipelago is comprised of thousands of islands and the people speak different dialects, it becomes harder to unite us. Religion also plays a big role in dividing us. But we must strive to get over this hurdle.

      The members of the elite class back in the day never really wanted to give everyone in Phil society equal opportunity. They just wanted to maintain the status quo. We still have the same problem until now. This is the reason why we want to enlighten more Filipinos. More Filipinos need to wake up to the truth about the people who want to keep the Philippines in its current state. At the moment, Filipinos are being entertained by telenovelas and wowowee and they refuse to believe us.

      Certainly, our climate has a lot to do with who we are. However, Singapore also has a tropical rainforest climate but look at them now. Their success has a lot to do with their attitude and their ability to adapt to their surroundings. I discussed this in my previous blog How to be a successful Filipino. Here’s an excerpt:

      As they say, the place we are born in is just the luck of our draw. We had no choice in the matter. It’s what we do in the place we inhabit that matters. Filipinos don’t have to feel unlucky for having to live in such a harsh climate. Some cultures live in worse conditions but have managed to find a way to work around their unique circumstances. As Galileo said, we have to master the mathematics of nature, understand it, harness its energy and use it for our benefit. There are also little ways we can alleviate our discomfort. If we find it hard to work and be productive during the hottest part of the day, we could adjust our working schedules to the times that work for us. If 12 noon to 3 pm is the most unproductive part of the day because of the heat and humidity, perhaps we should make our working hours before and after that time.

      If the humidity in our country is stifling our productivity and our lifestyle, there are many ways to cope. We could design our abode and our work environment in a way that will encourage fresh air to flow freely making us less-dependent on energy-guzzling air-conditioning. We could also watch what we eat because taking in too much food during a hot day can make us lethargic. It is very obvious that people from First World countries have acquired a taste for knowledge. They use this knowledge to enhance their lifestyle and improve the quality of their lives. They appreciate the beauty of nature and compliment it with beautiful architecture and infrastructure. This is how they are and that is how they want to live. The question we have to ask ourselves is, how do we want to live? Do we want to continue to live in the condition we are in or do we want to make our existence a little bit easier for us? We seem to remain complacent even though we suffer from shortages of food, water, energy and get severe battings from the weather every now and then. We have to formulate plans, think more about our future, and be more creative.

      So simplesimon, there is no need to be sad now that you know the truth. You should be happy:

      Be proud because of yourself and not because of your race. No race is superior to the other. If we keep thinking that people who live in western countries are superior to us because of the amount of their knowledge and their wealth, then it’s like saying that people in third world countries are inferior because of their ignorance and poverty. In the same manner, we will always think that we are just victims of the circumstances we are in. If we keep thinking this way, we will never have any motivation to do something to elevate ourselves from our wretched existence. We will always feel bitter and envious about the prosperity of the richer nations. If we keep thinking this way, we will always feel incompetent and hopeless. Eleanor Roosevelt once said that no one can make you feel inferior without your consent. We don’t have to feel inferior to western cultures because we are capable of acquiring the same amount of knowledge and wealth ourselves if we choose to.

      • Marv IN says:

        “We don’t have to feel inferior to western cultures because we are capable of acquiring the same amount of knowledge and wealth ourselves if we choose to.”
        Sorry Miss Ilda for intruding on this conversation between you two again.
        I agree with almost all of your points but something I’ve been noticing lately with many APs (not necessarily those who are on this site or call themselves APs) is this idea of ‘matching up or equal capability acquisition’.
        This mindset is still a part of the nature that keeps us in chains of inefficiency and drives many of us to pursue to short term happiness under the illusion that it is long term.
        Year in, year out many Filipinoes go on the “long term” road of schooling to be equals to our Western counterparts under the illusion that it will make them capable “enough” to change the setting without realizing that this long term is a false long term. A long “short term” that has pretty much helped made our local civilization more stable but have always kept our inferior status quo. I.E. we improve because we have smarter and more efficient and younger Filipinoes/Anti-Pinoys helping but we never seem to be rid of corruption nor of making the less fortunate be more passionate about taking the opportunities presented to them by many of these good willed people.
        Please do not misunderstand. I’m not saying we need to be anti-intellectuals or ignoring schooling altogether (although I am a drop-out but I don’t claim that my choice has made me smarter and in fact I’m still currently scouting for local schools to enroll to) but realistically “Western Culture” the statement is just another padrino inducing language. Western Culture is not one union where there are no variables. Within each of these so called Western Culture are actual countries who they themselves historically were not always on top of the world. America being the most famous story in that not only where they NOT #1, they had no chance at being #1 at all back then. It just wasn’t in their capability. They, like us, only wanted to revolt and become an independent country.
        What made them surpass or equal other Western Cultures (besides natural resources and size) was that their Republic system didn’t promote mere gradual improvements. It created something that allowed them to surpass the status quo not “match up” to them. It created “freedom” beyond that which has been witnessed then and from that freedom came early entry to innovation which fueled the passion for entrepreneurship. Of course this is the rosy over-simplification of their history but my point is none of these feelings of superiority or inferiority or equality are what lead any weaker culture to the “serious” happiness we long desire because the truth is they were simply incapable of doing so no matter how much they tried. For one Manny Pacquiao, there is always many failed Filipino athlete in all of sports and in fact this has been credited for why Manny has such a strong support – we never had an actual local athlete (setting aside Fil-Ams) reach this type of height in sports before.
        Historically, no culture became “better” because of their capability to acquire the same amount of knowledge and wealth. Emphasis on “the same”. They became better because they were able to “create” a new form of knowledge or wealth that when it allowed that civilization to incrementally grow led to it being dubbed as a well off civilization by the time they came on the radar of the rest of the world. Maybe this is vague but the only idea I want to impart with my reply is that let us not confuse progress with innovation. Innovation produces paradigm shifts. Progress, especially the progress that which will make us utilize our capability to acquire that same amount of knowledge and wealth (assuming we’re truly capable of that), would only keep our country from not sinking totally but the corruption will still be there and the type of happiness will only be alleviated slightly (think moving from an apartment to having your own home slightly) but paradigm shifts as well as a culture prepared to grab that shift by the head first when it comes is what allowed inferior countries to leapfrog pass superior countries. Not “same” amount of knowledge or wealth for knowledge has no hierarchy. Wealth maybe but the upper echelons of knowledge is not tapped resources and I’m sure you too know this considering what you wrote in that South Korea article but I feel you may have forgotten this now in your effort to merely jump one level of the padrino mentality without considering the next level.

      • ilda says:

        Sorry, I think you are touching on way too many topics here and it is a bit confusing. If I am not mistaken, you are not an advocate of higher learning. But the system that made it possible for countries like America to succeed were formulated by people who achieved above average education.

      • ChinoF says:

        Well Marv In, why western cultures and Singapore remain one standard for Filipinos to look up to, is because they’re doing better and we’re worse off. That’s why we can learn from them, and not them from us. 

      • Marv IN says:

        @ilda 

        Oh sorry if that’s how I came off. I am an advocate of higher learning and the higher learning of olden times (this is pre-Industrial Revolution remember?) is vastly different from the context of today.

        This higher learning was not achieved by acquiring “the same” amount of knowledge and wealth. Especially wealth. Especially with regards to application of knowledge. The closest thing we had to Washington for example in our history was Lapu-Lapu’s tribe and there for example, it was not equality but toppling impossibility that help with it. Then you have the luck of these people all coming together to form that system.

        This wasn’t something that any group of higher learned people at the time could have just made and in fact there were lots of opposing views towards their vision. That’s what I mean by difference between innovation and progress which was the only topic I really wanted to touch on.

        @ChinoF

        “why western cultures and Singapore remain one standard for Filipinos to look up to, is because they’re doing better and we’re worse off. That’s why we can learn from them, and not them from us.”

        Exactly and it’s a better thought than what we currently have but it’s an equally fallacious thought. There are tons of things we obviously need to learn but we can raise our standard further. We can cut down this illusion of East vs West for example and actually have “specific” Western culture standards just as we narrowed it down to Singapore and not the entire Southeast Asian culture “minus us” and one of the thing we can do so is to look beyond the confidence of knowing we have the capability to meet this standard because in reality not all individuals are created equally capable. (hence why I referenced Pacquiao and America) 

        BUT!

        Not all individuals’s desperation are created equally either and we must not settle for fads or current leaders. We can still surpass this message of “We don’t have to feel inferior to western cultures because we are capable of acquiring the same amount of knowledge and wealth ourselves if we choose to.” but unfortunately only if we debunk this and accept this as a falsehood. (At least this is from my perspective and the core of why I typed a reply to Miss ilda and Mr. simplesimon)

      • ChinoF says:

        Of course, we’ll need to learn the right things from other cultures, not really everything. I’m sure you mean, let’s learn what we need to know. 

        “…This illusion of East vs West ” – you got it, man. That’s the big illusion about this. 

  32. TamiTami says:

    I have experienced being called “KJ”, “Walang sense of humour”,  “Masungit”, “Mahal (expensive) ang Kaligayahan”, “Sobrang seryoso” when I came to the Philippines as a freshman from the US. 

    Thank you so much for this article. 

    It was a real culture shock, honestly. I thought it was just me, and that I’m not used to Filipino humour and way of happiness. To describe Filipino humour which to me is mostly “Wala sa lugar” the best sentence for me to describe it in simple terms is ….cheesy as hell

    Filipinos are mostly Christian but I doubt that they in general manifest the Christian values from the bible. Probably the erroneous teachings of Catholic priests but not the true Christian values.

    Ecc 3:4 “To every thing there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heaven… time to weep, and a time to laugh; a time to mourn, and a time to dance;”

    After that 8/23 incident, I saw a photoshopped picture in facebook  and Spiderman was in it, when I scrolled down to the comment area It was just devastating to read and realize how numb and lacking of compassion Filipinos are. They were joking and alternating ‘h’ and ‘a’ in long sequences, and using lol in caps like LOL. 

    This is a powerful article you have here, and I wish it’ll disseminate in order to enlighten the minds of many of our countrymen. Filipinos really need this.
    No doubt,  the standard of happiness of Filipinos are lower than zero. 

    I greatly commend you guys for your efforts despite being called Anti Pinoy and being hated by the general Filipino society themselves. History does repeat itself, for centuries the ones who spoke of the truth and truly cared were time and time again ostracized by the very people whom they cared for the most. 

    “Ignorance is a bliss, while Knowledge is suffering”

    Thank God for “Anti-Pinoys” like you. (You may be an atheist, but this is what my heart is screaming out loud more than anything)

  33. Ed says:

    Actually, as early as the 1950’s, there were celebrities running for office, BUT NOT WINNING. Movie idol Rogelio de la Rosa ran for President in the 50’s but lost. And Erap Estrada being mayor was an unusual case up to the 80’s. So it wasn’t really the idea of Ronald Reagan as US President which made the idea of artistas becoming elected officials became so popular in the country . Few Filipinos even knew Reagan as a movie actor. My own theory is that, when Cory Aquino took over in 1986, her OWN DAUGHTER KRIS AQUINO showed her UTTER OBSESSION with the idea of being part of show biz. So since then, all sorts of artistas started running for PUBLIC OFFICE starting the 1987 elections (from barangay counsellor, city officials – Vic Sotto as Vice-Mayor of Quezon City – then all the way to Senator, and then Vice President by 1992, then President). Because the President’s own daughter was making it “cool” for folks – from voters to public figures – to mix show biz with politics! And since Marcos ruined the country, the idea was that “really smart people” are not the solution to the country, but “people with good heart” and that alone. So people voted for whom they “trusted” as having “puso” – mga artista at basketball players!
    And that IS also part of the obsession with happiness/not being serious/anti-intellectualism that you and others have mentioned on this site. Peace!

  34. Ed says:

    One more thing: you mentioned how the obsession with feel-good moments has led Filipinos to an “unhealthy mindset.” Hahaha, not only unhealthy mindset, but UNHEALTHY, period! You showed all that lechon above: it is depressing how most Filipinos just eat so unhealthily and have a rather unhealthy lifestyle – all that cholesterol and salt, mixed with smoking and drinking. I mean, I like eating kare kare with bagoong myself, but it should be with moderation. Can you imagine how many Filipinos who are actually LEAN have blood pressure/high cholesterol problems? How many of our more successful people need heart bypass surgeries though they aren’t really overweight? It’s the lifestyle! And then if you do NOT smoke at all or like to drink beer or other hard drinks (I don’t), you could actually be PILFORATED in our society. You’re not “Filipino” if you don’t drink San Miguel beer or eat balut. Much has been mentioned about Manny Pacquiao. I found it real depressing that, with all his sports triumphs and all, he has all these ads for SAN MIGUEL BEER! WIth Kris Aquino! Here is one world-class athlete who could promote a healthy lifestyle, and instead, he promotes LIQUOR! Did he become a world-champion boxer by drinking San Miguel beer? What message is he giving the masses?

    • ilda says:

      You are quite right Ed. I specifically chose the photo of the lechon because it is the ultimate symbol of happiness for most Filipinos. 

      Thanks for your insight 🙂

  35. Ed says:

    Wait, I meant PILLORIED, not pilforated.

    We need to pursue happiness and use our positive nature to inspire us to do well so that we could attain that happiness, not just short fleeting moments which actually are just a respite from the general malaise plaguing our society. We have to STUDY and LEARN from our mistakes, and WORK HARD, and that way, we can make up our own minds instead of being indoctrinated by the media (run by oligarchs and others with an agenda of their own) as to how we should think.

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  39. dino regalario says:

    You have some great insights and i think most of them would do the filipino people a lot of good. but i think you go a little too far with respect to your judgents about it. As a people we’re not perpetually in pursuit of happiness. Our daily lives are far from it judging by the daily routines most filipinos have which consist of earning a living most of the time. i could hardly see this as pursuing happiness excessively. But it is true that we tend to not take things seriously. However i think this is not all that bad. We as a people are inherently jovial and easy going. Yes this has a lot of disadvantages but it is also equally true that it is distinctly our own. I disaggree with the idea that such is an import from the american way as you put it. If you go out and meet the average filipino what makes them happy is very much far off from the american standard of happiness. It may not be as profound as the former but it also has its own virtues. Humility, graciousness, collegiality among other things are virtues directly attributable to our light hearted temperment. These are attitudes we gained from our forefathers based on various folktales and epics passed on in various regions of the country. I digress in my discussion. I guess all im really trying to say is that while it is true that we need to take things more seriously. I believe that we should be guided by our own culture when we do so. Its not all bad and i think if we can sort out combining what we value as a people and what we need as a country real development is possible.

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