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On Winnie Monsod’s Viral ‘Lecture’ Video

October 18, 2010

Instead of preaching UP supremacism and the undefined platitudes of honor and excellence, Professor Monsod should just help spread the virtue of Reason, Individualism and Capitalism.

Professor Winnie Monsod is undeniably one of the most widely known economists in the Philippines. This year, Monsod became more popular in the cyberspace after one of her students at the University of the Philippines-Diliman uploaded her ‘last lecture’ on YouTube, which has gone viral with over 360,000 views.

In her 10-minute lecture, she described UP students as the “intellectual elite”- “the creme de la creme”- simply because they were admitted into the top public university in the country.

Monsod urged her students to place honor before excellence. “Do you know what the University motto is? Honor and excellence. Honor first before excellence. It’s not excellence and honor, it’s honor and excellence. And what is the fruit of honor and excellence? Is it not competence and integrity? In other words, if you have lived up to your promise and your potential as a university student, you are in a position to be part of the solution to this country’s problems, not part of the problem,” she said.

She made an accurate observation that majority of the country’s top politicians graduated from UP, saying “if they were so good, why are we where we are now.” With this, she asked her students to assure her that they would act with honor and integrity.

“You do not have to cheat. And cheating in the small things is going to lead to cheating in the large things… Eh saan tayo ngayon? If they were so good, why are we where we are now? And so you have to ask yourselves that. And part of the reason is because we have always looked at excellence, and not looked at honor and integrity.”

She also advised her students to disabuse themselves of notions of going abroad.

“If you are going to help this country, you’ve got to be in the country. If any of you have little ambitions of going abroad so that you can earn more, please disabuse yourself, because by doing that you are essentially betraying the people in the Philippines who trusted you and who invested their money in you,” she said.

However, this is my personal view. Instead of preaching UP supremacism and the undefined platitudes of honor and excellence, Professor Monsod should just help spread the virtue of Reason, Individualism and Capitalism. Those who plan to work abroad are not “traitors.”

As a highly respected economics professor, Monsod should expose what’s wrong with the country’s public education system and attack the altruist-statist policies of our politicians, such the proposed RH bill, the antitrust law, etc. Although I agree with Monsod that the Filipino taxpayers have invested much in the education of public school students, I don’t believe that it s their duty to pay back by staying in the country. The only solution I can think of is for the government to guarantee economic freedom and protect individual rights by starting to decontrol and by gradually abolishing public schools and colleges and other welfare state programs.

Like I stated in a previous blog, “The failure to defend reason, individualism, and capitalism has a very high price: the destruction of individual freedom and rights. Graft and corruption is not the main ally of failed governance, but our failure to think— our refusal to embrace reason, individualism, and capitalism— our failure to defend the truth. The only logical result of this “failure of the mind” is a nation of freeloaders, of free-askers, and of ‘little dictators’ (those who tell us how to live our lives, to obey, to surrender our will to our society, and to make a sacrifice for the sake of the greater good).”

Also in another blog I stated the following:

Yes, I agree that the University of the Philippines houses many of our brightest young students in the country. This is why it is important to expose the kind of evil that is penetrating this top public institution of learning. If there’s one institution that must be the main target of leftist indoctrination, it should be the University of the Philippines due to the following reasons:

  • Prestige
  • Population
  • The level of intelligence of its students
  • The potentials of its graduates
  • The size of government funding
  • Position in the country’s intellectual hub
  • Many possibilities for socialist/liberal strategies
  • Influence

This is why it is very important to audit UP, intellectually and ideologically. However, it should be the responsibility of those who believe in free-market capitalism to wrestle with the propagators of liberalism and socialism at UP and other state universities in the country. It should be their responsibility to give proper education to their students, meaning by teaching a student how to live his life—by developing his mind and equipping him to deal with reality. Indeed, the UP seems to be the main subject of this public education attack because of its importance and because of its ability to change the course of the country’s history in the future.

Now I’d like to share a very interesting article written by Dr. Joy Antonelle De Marcaida who reacted to Monsod’s lecture. Here’s what Dr. Marcaida wrote:

But in my country of origin, in my homeland, they apparently speak of me and think of me as a traitor. Professor Solita Monsod of the University of the Philippines, in a video of a lecture to her students currently being circulated by unquestionably well-meaning Filipinos to expatriates they know and love, expressed her anger towards those who have chosen to leave their home and their people to find work, sustenance and success in another land. How is this different from a Manileño who chooses to re-establish himself and his family in Cagayan de Oro because the business opportunities there turned out to be more conducive to his success? How is it a betrayal of the Filipino people for a Filipino in another country to be recognized and applauded for the good that he does on a global scale?

How am I a traitor when the dollars I earn here translate into businesses and consumer confidence and local spending by the family and people I still support back home? How is it that I am a fool when I have wrought only respect and admiration and love in this country for a Filipino? Professor Monsod suggested that Filipinos abroad “pay back” what is owed to the country. In my lifetime, I hope I have done a lot of good, and have paid forward.

Filipinos overseas are self-exiles. We chose to leave our homeland when this became intellectually, politically, financially, artistically or philosophically limiting or oppressive. We are drawn to another country because of the vitality of its intellectual, scientific or artistic scene, its support and tolerance for innovation, progress and intellectual energy, and by its high regard for the immigrant who brings in new talent and skill, allowing him or her the freedom to achieve success, find his or her identity and express his or her ideas. Self-actualization in another land is not a crime. And Filipinos back home, who seek their own success, would be well-served to rejoice in ours. We are no different. We are just far from home.

Related Blog Article:

What if They Went on Strike?

Separate State from Education!

“Right to Education” Advocates: Evil Enemies of Individual Freedom!

Dealing with Mediocrity

The Case of Some Top State U College-Bred

19 Comments leave one →
  1. Love permalink
    October 18, 2010 3:38

    people missed the point again, kanya kanyang taas ihi nanaman

    • October 18, 2010 3:38

      What’s the point?

  2. Wasp permalink
    October 19, 2010 3:38

    uhm..where’s the continuation of Ayn Rands video? I heard a lot about her but this is my first encounter. I can’t help but agree but subconsciously I am wishing she would say something that would make me disagree.

    • October 19, 2010 3:38

      Continuation… http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tIlT7Ww_3rI&feature=related

      “I can’t help but agree but subconsciously I am wishing she would say something that would make me disagree.”

      That’s what I was three years ago when I met her. I was first year law student when a university consultant named Raul S. Gonzales (not Arroyo’s DOJ Sec. but her father’s- Dado- Press Secretary) literally instructed me to read two Ayn Rand books- Atlas Shrugged and The Fountainhead. That was the first time I heard the name Ayn Rand. He jotted it down on a piece of paper. I bought The Fountainhead after a few months. When I started reading the book I thought the villain, Ellsworth Monkton Toohey, was one of the protagonists. I was wrong. It took me a year to finish it. I finished Atlas Shrugged in more than a year. It’s a life-changing experience.

      We only live once. Like a very few people I know, I don’t want to spend myself believing in a lie. I really treasure that very day that man who preferred to be called “RSG” summoned me, being the editor in chief of our school organ, before meeting the university chairman.

  3. Mareng Winnie permalink
    October 21, 2010 3:38

    Winnie Monsod is just being populist, but deep inside she is really an advocate of capitalism and you should be really proud of her.

    – She supported UP’s Tuition Fee Increase
    – She is an advocate of neoliberal to freemarket policies
    – She goddamn hates commies/socialists

    • October 23, 2010 3:38

      There are aspects of capitalism that Mareng Winnie supports, but sadly she supports some stuff that undermine capitalism.

      • October 23, 2010 3:38

        Yes, it’s really disappointing that she can’t even decide on the RH bill issue.

  4. November 4, 2010 3:38

    ” embrace reason, individualism, and capitalism”

    After 155336372 years of teaching in UP, Monsod need not reiterate the importance of reason. However…

    Individualism and capitalism are not intrinsically good. Individualism with the sense of collective security results in anarchy. Capitalism via absolute laissez faire concentrates wealth on the intellectual elite — just like what’s happening today.

    Honor and excellence are two things that must be achieved no matter what. Individualism and capitalism are not.

    And as regards to the UP supremacism or whatnot, I think your interpretation of the video is convoluted. What would you wanna have her say?

    • November 4, 2010 3:38

      “Individualism and capitalism are not intrinsically good. Individualism with the sense of collective security results in anarchy. Capitalism via absolute laissez faire concentrates wealth on the intellectual elite — just like what’s happening today.”

      This is exactly what I’m talking about… Intellectual bankruptcy.

    • xyxy permalink
      November 4, 2010 3:38

      “Individualism with the sense of collective security results in anarchy.”

      – I dont know much about individualism but how could this be?

      • November 4, 2010 3:38

        “Individualism with the sense of collective security results in anarchy.”

        That statement is wrought with a lot of contradictions. He commenter doesn’t have any idea what individualism means. There’s no such thing as “Individualism with the sense of collective security”.

        Individualism regards man—every man—as an independent, sovereign entity who possesses an inalienable right to his own life, a right derived from his nature as a rational being. Individualism holds that a civilized society, or any form of association, cooperation or peaceful coexistence among men, can be achieved only on the basis of the recognition of individual rights—and that a group, as such, has no rights other than the individual rights of its members.

        Collectivism means the subjugation of the individual to a group—whether to a race, class or state does not matter. Collectivism holds that man must be chained to collective action and collective thought for the sake of what is called “the common good.”

        Collectivism holds that, in human affairs, the collective—society, the community, the nation, the proletariat, the race, etc.—is the unit of reality and the standard of value. On this view, the individual has reality only as part of the group, and value only insofar as he serves it.

  5. November 6, 2010 3:38

    This is a good blog message, I will keep the post in my mind. If you can add more video and pictures can be much better. Because they help much clear understanding.🙂 thanks Geichenko.

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