Abstraction as Dissent


Despite the observable efforts of the current administration, local critics of President Rodrigo Roa Duterte proudly flaunt among the international communities their abstraction, as if it’s a virtue. As if the new international airports being built all over the country and the new highways connecting far-flung spots to cities are mere propaganda. As if foreign investors who are gung-ho in doing business in the country are no indicators of political stability and expressions of confidence in the national leadership; the disciples of ego find the best language to undermine the entire government. They find joy in insulting the president in every opportunity, and in each time making sure they are in their best form. And for what? What is there to achieve in all that? One thing and one thing only: the immense pleasure of satisfying their ego.

On the other end of the spectrum, meanwhile, are the chameleons who hide their true colors behind the pretense of public service. They suck the national coffers dry and leech on the public goodwill the administration has achieved.

The true problem with any government by any administration is shortsightedness. Most officials in government could not see beyond their own self interests. They see government, its offices, as opportunities for getting rich, and term-limits as timeline or deadline to map out most profit-generation financially and politically. While these corrupt officials enrich themselves, the critics of the administration enrich their egos. Sadly, the public does not benefit from either. Authentic public service is a lonely calling, it is like a prophet in the wilderness. Now the Filipino public suffers from that massive shortsightedness.

Everything is viewed as short-term; no adequate planning and continuity of worthwhile government programs lead to absence of basic public service that works.

We need a cultural and systemic revolution. However, a true revolution is possible only from a people united by their collective drive to eradicate that shortsightedness forced on them. That people is not us. Yet. Because we are directed by greed, a me-first mentality, that is so inescapable we cannot even follow simple traffic rules.


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