The Philippines and Uncle Sam
Vincent’s Note: A fellow Objectivist asked me to state my objective opinion about the United States’ foreign policy in my country Philippines. I saw it fit to state my country’s history as brief as possible and explain how the US foreign policy affected our national, political, economic and even military affairs. But first I admit that American occupation brought positive changes to the Philippines. Of course in order to avoid being too general and vague, I had to state a particular example in order to explain how US foreign policy largely impacted Philippines and how the latter controlled our economy and national affairs (albeit to some extent). The name of this fellow Objectivist is Jeff Allen and he asked me this question:
“Froilan, just a thought: since you’re in the Phillippines, you might be better situated than most other commenters here to talk about how US foreign policy affects your country? I think the US has a LOOONG history of relations with the P.I., and it would be interesting to hear about that, from a standpoint informed by Objectivist principles. I think they have their own Islamic terrorists to deal with too, don’t they? And then there’s foreign aid, and overseas remittances, and relations with China. All sorts of good stuff.
Who knows? Maybe your government isn’t even reading Facebook chatter?
My answer (I posted it verbatin, without any alteration):
No, they (politicians) are not. Lol! They’re busy keeping their loot. My government is one of the worst stooges of Bush during his time in power. But you know our President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo went to China to ask for a multi-billion dollar loan. As a result, the Chinese is now in control of our economic affairs, and proof of it is the fact that they now corner most of our infrastructure, contracts and industrial and exploration projects. Remember that outrageous axiom that goes— “he who controls money controls the world.” Well, besides the United States, the Chinese also weild enormous control over the Philippines. You may ask me why this is happening. The number one to blame is the Filipino people. I have stated once in my blog that it is the stupidity of the Filipino people did them and put the entire nation in a state of economic and political calamity. On the other hand, our leaders do not have the moral philosophy and proper economic platform to run the nation. Now the whole country is looking forward to 2010 elections to remove Arroyo from office. To them election is the only way to extricate Philippines out of this economic and political mess.
Like George Bush, Ms Arroyo was believed to have stolen her presidency in 2004. An overwhelming majority of Filipinos said in various polls that their president cheated her way to the palace. This scandal rocked the nation and deprived the President of smooth-sailing governance. Protests swarmed the streets and the opposition party threatened to unseat her through constitutional and extra-constitutional means.
So what did our president do? First, she declared war against insurgency. Her government released a document that aimed at purging the left. Then she released various fascistic and Machiavelian edicts that threatened civil liberties like Executive Order 464 that barred executive officials from testifying against her in the Senate and other tribunals. She hid behind the mangled doctrine of executive privilege to stay in power. She issued Presidential Decree 1017 that put the entire nation in state of emergency, and this resulted in the arrest of various militant representatives and protesters. It was one of the darkest parts of our history after the end of martial rule in 1986. And when the people nearly unseated Ms Arroyo two years ago, a popular mall in Makati City, the country’s version of New York, was bombed. The tragedy was dubbed as the Glorietta Bombing wherein more than 10 people perished and hundreds injured. Who was the prime suspect? The government itself. It sounds like a truthers’ story of the 9/11 attack.
You asked me about the US foreign policy in the Philippines. The US has the worst US foreign policy here. I need to write a book to enumerate them here one by one. But there’s one thing you should know how the US and its international banker-benefactors controlled the Philippines. It was laid down in part in one of the landmark cases in Philippine jurisprudence. I am a law student so I was able to read this case. This landmark case is Maceda vs. Macaraig (http://www.lawphil.net/judjuris/juri1991/may1991/gr_88291_1991.html). I was shocked when I read this case and how the US ‘somehow’ controlled the monetary, economic, and political affairs of my country.
This is one of the so-called ‘American conspiracies’ to control the Philippines. One example is the creation of the National Power Corporation in 1936 with the help of the American government, the goal of which was to provide electricity in the entire nation. Remember that during that time, the dollar was semi-gold standard. An executive agreement was signed by the US Congress and the Philippine president allowing the US to provide the necessary finances to the debtor Philippines. As a result, the US printed millions of dollars out of nothing and loaned them to the Philippines. An agreement was signed obliging the Philippines to pay NOT IN DOLLARS but only in GOLD BULLIONS. Aside from that, the US also controlled all national exploration and industrial projects through the Parity Rights policy which entitled the Americans 50-50 of the country’s natural resources. Our leaders had no choice but to sign all bilateral agreements at gun point.
There was a succession of bilateral agreements pertaining to the Napocor project. The loan was raised up to $8 billion dollars, which was the ceiling during the time of the US-installed Philippine dictator Ferdinand Marcos. We had to pay only in GOLD BULLIONS, considering the fact that the US totally abandoned the gold standard in 1971. We traded value for nothing. The reign of American-installed dictator Marcos was the worst part in the country’s history. The American government supported the dictator. It was the end of all civil liberties and the Marcos administration seized all the properties of capitalists who were against his rule and distributed them to his cronies. The country’s top media corporation that time ABS-CBN was seized by the Marcos government and gave it to the uncle of the dictator’s wife Imelda Marcos, who is known for her lavish lifestyle and fetish for expensive shoes. Marcos did all these through the silent sanction of the US. Well, it was partly the fault of our leaders who depended solely on multi-billion dollar loans, and the US took it as a way to control us.
But up to these days, many Filipinos look up to the Americans as their savior. This is not surprising because most of our school textbooks were funded both by the American government and the World Bank. On my part, I look at America as the defender of freedom and capitalism because of its Constitution.
The exchange rate today of dollar versus peso is 1:47. The dollar which is worth nothing is one of the main reasons why we do not progress. Well, another reason is the stupidity of our people. They keep on electing traditional politicians to office despite their records of corruption. The normal monthly wage of Filipino worker is P15,000 or $300. No, that’s actually generous, because the World Bank stated just recently that more than half of the Filipino population live on $1 per day. Even if we work really hard, nothing will happen because our fate depends on the dollar.
I can see that the monetary system of the US will certainly trigger a global crisis and even a global war. Unfortunately the Americans elected a left-leaning leader who is Obama, who will surely worsen the problem. But ironically most media people here are rejoicing and praising Americans for electing him.