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What About the Poor Who Can’t Pay for their Education?

July 26, 2010

One of my previous blogs generated hateful and interesting comments from some students of the University of the Philippines. In my blog entitled To All UP Students: Education is NOT a Right I stated in part:

The legendary and most touted “right to free education” simply means the government must sacrifice a particular sector of our society in order to serve the welfare and the needs of a certain beneficiary sector. This is because the government has no depository of unlimited amount of goods and wealth. The government is not a productive agency, but an agency that relies on forced and not “voluntary” taxation, which is apparently an oxymoron. The student protesters’ demand for “free education” would only enshrine or establish institutionalized theft wherein the government plays the role of an ever benevolent Robin Hood by robbing the wealth of the productive members of our society in order to serve the weak, the not-have, or less privileged in life.

This is my reply to a commenter who wrote the following:

And then we have the idea of the ‘poor.’ If the people that deserve to be in UP would actually reject even the idea of a state subsidy – because of a big government, the ‘poor’ would never go into the institution. Snd what if – in mere theory – the ‘poor’ really deserves – and has the right – to be in UP? They would never get in – or if they do, they won’t stay for long – because they can’t pay the fees [to begin with].

The question really is what will happen to poor people who can’t afford to pay for their tuition fees?

First, what is the proper concept of rights? I have sufficiently addressed this issue. The “right to education ” is a perversion of the proper concept of rights for it includes the right to demand something from an ever benevolent agency we call “government.” Rights are a condition to man’s existence. In order to live as a human being and to ensure our survival, we must have a rational understanding of what makes life on earth possible. As I stated above, “A “right” is a moral principle defining and sanctioning a man’s freedom of action in a social context. There is only one fundamental right (all the others are its consequences or corollaries): a man’s right to his own life. Life is a process of self-sustaining and self-generated action; the right to life means the right to engage in self-sustaining and self-generated action—which means: the freedom to take all the actions required by the nature of a rational being for the support, the furtherance, the fulfillment and the enjoyment of his own life.”
The Constitution actually demolishes the concept of rights by adding a lot of socialist provisions under Article 2 (General Principles and State Policies), which is a departure from the 1935 Constitution, which I consider the most faithful version to man’s rights and existence. The provision on the “right to accessible education” is actually a negation of rights. There are only four fundamental categories of rights:

  1. The right to Life
  2. The right to liberty
  3. The right to property
  4. The right of pursuit of happiness.

Observe that these rights do not include the right to “something” or the right of “public demand.” I find the vitriolic comments very disturbing and ignorant. If this is the kind of students we we graduate, then we’re doomed…

You said: “And then we have the idea of the ‘poor.’ If the people that deserve to be in UP would actually reject even the idea of a state subsidy – because of a big government, the ‘poor’ would never go into the institution.”

Poverty is not merely a creation of mere unluckiness or failure to survive. In most societies, poverty is the by-product of man’s failure to think. People in some slave pens are poor not merely because of corruption, but because of people’s ignorance and failure to discover the proper morality and the proper social system for man. Our huge amount of debt is not merely a product of government’s mismanagement and corruption, but most especially of the dominant mentality of our people, which consists of their belief that the government must embark on excessive government spending to provide for their needs. There are certainly some poor people who deserve their fate because of their failure to think and credulity.

In short, there are more poor people in this country because of their rejection of the right and most moral social system on earth, which is free-market capitalism. What do you think is happening now in Venezuela? A lot of professionals- those who are still willing to think- would like to leave their country because of the self-immolating and self-sacrificing policies of Hugo Chavez. Even some union leaders believe that the socialist policies of their government have been causing poverty and great social misery. Venezuela is the result of a society of people with more public demands and who ask too much from their government. The Venezuelans put Chavez in power in the hope that he would provide their education, health care, and all basic needs. Look at the result of their COLLECTIVE STUPIDITY.

What will happen to poor people in a truly free society (but we’re not yet a free society as we continue to move towards socialism)? The only way to help them is through private charity. There are a lot of scholarship programs being offered by private universities and private institutions. I, for one, was a university scholar in college for being the editor in chief of our campus organ even though my family could afford to pay for my education. I was also a scholar in law school for two years. This means that if we want to obtain education, we must work for it. We should earn it!

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20 Comments leave one →
  1. AGAINST SA BLOG MO. permalink
    July 26, 2010 3:38

    First of all, you kept saying that Upians demand for a FREE state subsidy, but in the first place, they are demanding for HIGHER state. Do you even know why? Of course, you don’t. It’s because you’re not even a UPian.

    Eto sagot ko sa isa mong blog,

    KUNG HINDI RIGHT ANG EDUKASYON, KUNG ITINUTURING MO ITONG PRIBILEHIYO, BAKIT HINDI KA NA LANG TUMIGIL SA PAG- AARAL AT IBIGAY ANG KARAPATAN NA MAKAPAG-ARAL SA IBANG TAONG MAS NANGANGAILANGAN ? TUTAL LUXURY LANG NAMAN ANG EDUKASYON PARA SA IYO DI BA?.

    • July 26, 2010 3:38

      i posted my comments about your blog in u.p. overheard at above site. please feel free to read it.

      what caught my attention is your strong suggestion of ayn rand’s “atlas shrugged”. unless you know what you are reading, and you understand what the book is really all about and its origin, i will not recommend it.

      • July 26, 2010 3:38

        I have yet to see your position on the matter. All of you just spoke of floating abstractions, invalid argument, and adhominem attack. I get so thrilled when some people begin to resort to personal attacks because it feels they no longer have any sane argument to adduce.

  2. Eng Hill Guy permalink
    July 26, 2010 3:38

    nakakapagod mag-argue sayo.
    wala namang maniniwala sayo kaya ok lang.
    try mo mag-aral sometime sa U.P ha. para di ka lang maipit sa sariling konsepto mo.at para ma-weigh mo na rin ang mga bagay2 with your conscience.
    it doesn’t even affect me with whatever you say.

    • sum1. permalink
      July 27, 2010 3:38

      try nya muna pumasa bago siya mkkpag -aral sa UP. ha.

    • memew ako permalink
      July 27, 2010 3:38

      yun eh kung makapasok sya sa UP tol.

  3. xtian17 permalink
    July 27, 2010 3:38

    agree.. bahala na yung blogger sa buhay niya.. basta tayo, we are pushing for the liberty of the almost 75% of the population that includes us,…:D

    la la la la la

  4. chris985 permalink
    July 28, 2010 3:38

    To the blogger, I am sure that you got all those scholarships because you did not have to wash your clothes, cook your meal, walk going to school, or work for other people just so you can live. Unlike many of our countrymen, you are provided with everything that you need and there is no reason for you not to “earn” your education. Many cannot afford a good education because they were born poor. Try getting those scholarships you are too proud to have “earned” while living in the same condition as those of our starving countrymen and I will see your point.

    • July 28, 2010 3:38

      The answer then is free-market education and privatization of all public schools…

      “In a fully privatized economy there would be more private companies and corporations to offer scholarship grants to poor yet deserving students. This means that the government doesn’t have to shoulder the schooling of poor children. The Western concept of “corporate social responsibility” would also somehow compel private corporations and companies to embark on private charity to help poor children and poor people. This is what is happening in most highly developed country. Most importantly, the essence of privatization of education is the free-market of ideas. Private schools are free to embark on scientific and technological research in order to boost their image, attract more students, and establish partnerships with private firms. If a certain school or university failed to perform its job, it would cease to exist. Only those better performing schools would continue to survive. This might sound harsh but in reality, competition encourages innovation and productivity. If we allow the non-performing schools to flourish by giving them government subsidies, it would have a negative impact on the people and on the economy and this knee-jerk scheme would only encourage them not to innovate and, most importantly, it would affect the performance of the students.”

      —>>>> https://fvdb.wordpress.com/2010/07/27/separate-state-from-education/

      • Alia permalink
        August 5, 2010 3:38

        Dear blogger, I think these people nail it, try enrolling in UP. Not for the reasons they (or you think they) imply, but just for the experience. I do believe that education is a privilege, but I also believe that experience is the best teacher.

      • August 5, 2010 3:38

        I’m sorry but you simply missed my point. My anti-public education polemic is purely philosophical. What you said is the usual contention of most of my critics- that I don’t understand what they’re going through because I’m not from UP. The main issue here is whether education is a right and whether some students have this right to demand something from the government whose only power is to redistribute wealth. I have tackled this issue very clearly and extensively.

        Education is not a right. Try to understand the difference between a “natural right” and a “legal right.” This “right to education” farce is a legal right, which means it was conferred by the Constitution. Natural rights simply pertain to man’s right to his life, liberty, property, and the pursuit of happiness. You should understand that words and terms have an exact meaning. A “right” is properly defined as a right of action. It refers to an “earned” right. It does not refer to the “unearned.” A right to life doesn’t mean your neighbor or your government has to provide you food and clothing. It means you must work for it.

        This “right to education” simply means entitlement to “something” which we didn’t earn. In order to establish this “fiat” right to education, the government must use “force”, especially the power of taxation, simply because it is not a productive agency, but the most dependent agency on earth. The government is an effective agency of redistribution, not production.

        Now I say that the argument like “try enrolling at UP” is invalid; it’s a form of psychological evasion. Enrolling at UP is not the answer to the issue whether education is a right. This is not the answer to what you just said. The answer is, Education is not a right.

  5. Ryu Amakusa permalink
    July 31, 2010 3:38

    You might be good in theory, but in practice, that does not happen. You talk in pure rhetoric, but you disregard the reality that is happening. The masses need not to study hard theories and statistics to say that they are uneducated, undereducated and/or miseducated. I applaud your writing style, but i beg to disagree that it is only a imaginative opinion of yours. Whether education is a right or a priviledge, the matter is always about equality and equity. You are individualistic, then fine, but always remember that we need our neighbors in order to live. I understand your vantage point but it is far from the socio-political spectrum of our country. You need to do more field research than if you want more explanation. If you insist then well, I hope you find enlightenmment and understanding.

    • bogz permalink
      October 30, 2012 3:38

      “You might be good in theory, but in practice, that does not happen.”

      Actually, it did happen. For example, India’s education sector has been privatized. To consolidate this conclusions, primary and secondary schools in India are dominantly own by private sector.

      http://www.amazon.com/Beautiful-Tree-Personal-Educating-Themselves/dp/1933995920

      • November 1, 2012 3:38

        A related great documentary by John Stossel.

  6. Chumpy permalink
    July 31, 2010 3:38

    Magkakasundo po kayo ng mga BOR ng UP. Thumbs UP!

    Ngayon pa nga lang, 80% sa mga high school graduates ang hindi nakakapagcollege. 73% sa mga nagcollege ang nagdodrop out dahil sa laki ng mga fees.

    Ito ang realities ng buhay. Ngayon pa lang, ito na ang mga numero. Paano pa kung susundin ang sinasabi mo.

    Maaaring nabubuhay ka sa perpektong mundo. Sa mundo ng mga intellectual, mga kapitalista. Mga taong hindi nakaramdam ng sakripisyo ng buong pamilya para ang isang kapatid ay mapag-aral.

    Sana, kung paanong pinakikinggan mo ang mga teorya ng mga sinaunang tao na yan, sana pakinggan mo rin ang boses ng mga kapatid mo sa tabi tabi. Baka marinig mo ang boses ng katotohanan at ang reyalidad ng buhay.

  7. Alia permalink
    September 13, 2010 3:38

    I’m not saying that the answer to ‘if education is a right’ can be answered by enrolling in UP, dear blogger. I’m saying that you have to have a reality check here, and these you could easily weigh by seeing both sides of the issue and situation. One cannot go so far as to get a good paying job with just a high-school degree nowadays. This is the reality we face in this country. There’s simply too much people and too much problems regarding too much people in the Philippines. Simply by going on mentioning what and what not people have as their right doesn’t stop the fact that the people need that shred of hope that they can possibly attain by entering (or letting their children enter) college. Maybe your ideals will be better off in a future society where everything is equal.

  8. tremble permalink
    September 23, 2010 3:38

    you have insane concepts of poverty. iyong mga ganyang pag-iisip ang dahilan kung bakit may paghihirap sa mundo. ngayon lang ako nakabasa ng ganyang konsepto ng poverty actually.

    • September 24, 2010 3:38

      Poverty is primarily caused by man’s failure or refusal to think. Do you know about the tribal natives in Africa who worshiped cargo planes? They were modern-day “stone age” people and they lived in extreme poverty for thousands of years because of their failure to use their mind. The people in Soviet Russia embraced Lenin’s communism because of their refusal to think. Ignorant and stupid people are vulnerable to collectivism or dictatorship. We have intellectuals and politicians in Congress who support and endorse communism because of their warped understanding of philosophy and distorted view of reality. If you really understood my premise, you would have grasped that the only source of wealth is man’s mind. People in one territory may have rich natural resource, but that would be futile without men of mind and ability.

  9. Arthron Xala permalink
    March 6, 2011 3:38

    I am from UP Diliman and I am in agreement with you. This is people form UP Diliman who keeps on saying that you go study in UP to understand what it’s like are arrogant people who are convinced that they have the authority to decide what is right and wrong given their UP education. These people are the ones who cry for freedom of speech yet shun others who are expressing views that are against their opinions.

    These people are saying that if one has a cancer, these people ought to be treated by a doctor who has cancer too!

    Education is not a right. It is a choice. It is for the talented and the interested.

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