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Why America should Give Filipinos ‘Parity Rights’

January 25, 2013
They just can't get over it.

They just can’t get over it.

  • NOTE: Originally I posted the following as a Facebook rant.

Freer economies, especially the United States of America, which is at least still freer compared to many of today’s world economies, should give the Philippines “Parity Rights”, which has something to do with the principle of reciprocity.

The long defunct Parity Rights, which is one of the most defiled US foreign policies by the pinoy leftists/Marxists, was the result of the highly criticized Laurel-Langley Agreement that gave Americans equal rights with Filipino citizen to develop and exploit natural resources of the Philippines and to operate public utilities in the country.

But first, what is this legal creature or America’s imperialist tool called Parity Rights? For those fortunate enough to obtain expensive college indoctrination, your history or political science professors must have told you how evil Americans were that they forced our still messed up fledgeling government to grant the Americans the same rights to own lands and businesses and to explore our most-bragged-about rich natural resources.

“Those evil  imperialists nearly sucked our resources dry!” You’ve probably heard this from one of your Marxist or semi-leftist professors.

An article published in 1984– that’s ten years after the expiration of the parity rights policy– titled “The Legal Framework of Alien Interests in Land and Other Natural Resources in the Philippines” by Perfecto Fernandez, a UP professor, states that under American colonial law, American nationals “continued to enjoy the same rights to land and natural resources as Filipino citizens.”

“Additionally, lands and other natural resources were opened to aliens and foreign companies through two legal devices: (a) service contracts, and (b) international treaties and agreements entered into by the Chief Executive,” he said.

It’s as if lands and other natural resources are not allowed to Filipino aliens and companies in the United States. This shows that many of our so-called intellectuals during the ‘colonial period’ were out of touch with reality. They were highly schooled, but not highly educated. Mark Twain once suggested that there’s a big difference between the terms schooling and education.

What’s funny is that Prof. Fernandez wrote his piece stressing the need to focus on “national patrimony” 10 years after the expiration of the ‘imperialistic’ parity policy. But what’s funnier is that the 1980s marked the beginning of free market reforms in many Asian countries. In China, Deng Xiaping compromised Maoist principles in 1979 and decided to allow foreign investment and participation. Singapore, Hong Kong, and South Korea opened their economies to foreign investors during the same decade. Yet this UP mentor was still complaining of the “alienation of the remaining National Patrimony” which “has taken other forms” under the 1973 Charter? To call this professor “intelligent” or “educated” is to bastardize the proper standard definitions of “intelligence” and “education”.

Unfortunately (or fortunately for the leftist movement), many Filipino academics and ‘intellectuals’ share Fernandez’s  highly fallacious view.

Jose Duke Bagulaya, one of my uber-Marxist professors in college, wrote in his book titled “Writing Literary History” (pp. 93):

“In the past five decades, the guardians of the reactionary state developed a tradition of subservience, if not outright position of mendicancy, to the imperialist masters in Washington D.C. President Manuel Roxas defended and implemented parity rights and Bell Trade Act.”

Observe the Marxist terms (e.g., ‘reactionary state’ and ‘imperialist masters’) and rhetoric Mr.  Bagulaya employed. What about the now industrialized Asian nations such as Singapore, Hong Kong, Japan and South Korea that embraced the same “tradition of subservience” by opening their economies to foreign investors? The laws of reality rewarded these freer economies with economic wealth and progress. Perhaps Filipino intellectuals like Bagulaya and Fernandez would like to totally close our economy to foreign investors. They radically desire not just a 60-40 law, but a total no-alien-participation policy.

Make your statement a little bit clearer, Prof. Bagulaya: Do you want a Maoist state?

Jose Maria Sison, UP’s most famous professor and leader of the CPP-NPA, wrote in “Struggle for National Democracy”:

After the expulsion of the peasant-supported Democratic Alliance members of Congress in an all-out abuse of democracy, the Bell Trade Act and the Parity Amendment were ratified, thus formalizing the reestablishment of the imperialist-landlord pattern of trade, free-trade so-called, and the parity rights for U.S. citizens and corporations in the exploitation of our natural resources and the operation of public utilities.

Now who benefited from the 60-40 policy and the expulsion of American traders? Ironically it’s the old-rich or oligarchs who are being denounced by Filipino Marxists who want to turn this country into a new North Korea. People like Bagulaya and Sison reject the 60-40 law because they’re fighting for a Maoist-Leninist state. This academic, land-owning Marxist from Ilocos Sur considers America the world’s most evil empire when Soviet Union, perhaps his ideal socialist utopia, killed more than 7 million disarmed people in Ukraine from 1932-t0 1933 (the same year the Americans allowed Filipinos to form their own Constitution) in what is known today as the holodomor (extermination by hunger).

There are also mild ‘statists’ who share the Marxist view on America’s foreign policy in the Philippines. One of them is Inquirer columnist Conrado de Quiros, probably a SocDem, who likened the ‘tyrannical’ right of reply bill to parity rights. He wrote:

“The “right” of reply is tyrannical. It has no business being in the Freedom of Information bill, which almost assures its doom. It’s like the “parity rights” the United States tacked on to the release of war-damage payments to us after the War.”

His description of the right of reply proposal is spot on, but his analogy is way too fallacious. In the first place we cannot deny that we largely benefited from America’s help and economic participation despite its interventionist “democratic” policies implemented by the imperialist Democrats in Washington D.C.

How dare the American government forced the Philippines to give equal rights to Americans to own lands and operate businesses when the same privileges or rights were afforded to Filipinos in the United States!

But this is what they teach at UP! Those “brilliant” yet scatterbrained UP professors and intellectuals like JoMa Sison and Francisco Nemenzo!

When the Philippine government allowed Parity Rights to expire in 1974, many land-owning and business-owning Americans were forced to abandon their lands and businesses and leave the country.

America and other free economies should give us the Parity (reciprocal) Rights we rightfully deserved.

Here are some of the MUST things the United States government should do:

ONE: The US government should ban all Filipino citizens from practicing any kinds of professions in the United States. That is, Filipinos intending to work in Uncle Sam’s land should acquire American citizenship and study in any American university first before they can practice any profession.

But first, here’s what many pinoys don’t know:

  • US or foreign doctors cannot practice medicine in RP, while pinoys are allowed to practice the same profession in USA.
  • American or foreign lawyers are not allowed to practice law here. Filipino lawyers can practice legal profession in USA.
  • Foreigners are banned from engaging in any profession listed under Negative List A of the Foreign Investment Act.

TWO: The US government should ban all Filipinos (I mean still Filipino citizens) from owning land. It is public knowledge that the Arroyo family and many pinoy oligarchs and politicians own lands in the USA. These people are all hypocrites!

THREE: The US government should impose the same 60-40 ownership policy on all Filipino investors and businessmen. That is, Filipino businessmen and investors in the United States should not be allowed to own more than 40% stake in business.

FOUR: The US government should totally ban Filipinos from investing in media companies.

FIVE: USA and other freer economies like Singapore and Hong Kong should ban Filipinos from engaging in retail trade and cooperative venture.

SIX: USA and other freer economies like Australia should ban Filipinos from engaging in small-scale mining.

SEVEN: USA and other freer economies should ban Filipinos from “utilizing” marine resources in archipelagic waters, territorial sea, and exclusive economic zone.

EIGHT: The US government should ban Filipinos from owning more than 25% equity in private recruitment and contracts for the construction and repair of locally-funded works.

NINE: The US government should ban Filipinos from owning more than 30% equity in advertising and more than 40% in exploration, development and utilization of natural resources in all its territories.

TEN: The US government should ban Filipinos in the operation and management of public utilities and ownership/establishment and administration of educational institutions.

It’s now high time for the Americans to give us “parity rights” that we’ve been asking for for decades. Since we limit foreign investment and professional participation in our country, FREE ECONOMIES (meaning: countries that have a higher degree of economic freedom) should also afford the same treatment to Filipinos.

This proposal means the following:

  1. No Filipino doctors and lawyers shall be allowed to practice their respective professions in USA and other freer economies.
  2. No Filipino nurses shall be allowed to work in USA and other freer economies like Great Britain, Australia and New Zealand.
  3. Filipinos would only be allowed menial and limited vocational jobs.
  4. All Jollibee outlets and all Filipino-owned businesses in the United States shall be required to meet the 60-40 ownership policy.
  5. Land-owning Filipino politicians and oligarchs shall be forced to surrender their land properties to the American government.
  6. Millions of Filipinos would go back home.

Why can’t USA do the same thing? THEY SHOULD!

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5 Comments leave one →
  1. Respico permalink
    January 25, 2013 3:38

    The US and other countries with high degree of economic freedoms must demand to the Philippine government that their citizens can practice their profession in the Pinas and can own 100 per cent of a property/company. Kung tutuusin lugi na ang US, Singapore, Australia, UK, Japan, Canada, UAE, Saudi Arabia, etc. sa mga pinoy. Ang dami nang mga pinoy professionals sa mga nabanggit na bansa pero ang kanilang mga professionals bawal sa Pinas.

    • January 25, 2013 3:38

      Filipinos are paying a very high economic price for maintaining the country’s protectionism and economic restrictions. Countries that have a higher degree of economic freedom are more progressive. And because they’re economically successful, they can afford to provide jobs to foreigners, including Filipinos.

      • February 22, 2013 3:38

        Reminds me of something out of the Ryanverse… The concept of a Trade Reform Act leveling the playing field when facing a protectionist economy such as ours… It’s going to hurt.

    • bonifacio salay permalink
      April 18, 2014 3:38

      Clearly u have no knowledge of your own history from saying na lugi ang US sa pinas,the US has been siphoning the phils of its natural resources since they’ve taken us for a fool from the spanish colonizers,they haven’t just stripped us of our forests courtesy of the parity rights, bt the consequences was much more causing massive floods in the late 60′s north of negros occidental that resulted in the deaths of tens of negrenses via the american company they fondly called (ILCO) Insular Lumber Company. Check also THE SPLENDID LITTLE WAR so you may be informed how they duped the filipino freedom fighters so they may have a foothold on phil soil aftes the defeat of the spaniards,them being inside the walled city with no water and food coming in. Read the above book for details.

  2. GabbyD permalink
    January 26, 2013 3:38

    the US visa regulations hold out foreign talent and replicates consti restrictions.

    but largely i agree — we should turn our restrictions into a visa system to make it more flexible.

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