What Is Wrong With Us Filipinos?

History teaches us that all successful parliaments are essentially bicameral, and unicameral regimes always self-destruct -- but apparently , we Filipinos have cultural ADHD. Our Constitution may not be perfect, but it is workable: The problem is not our system but us -- what we need is not Charter-change but psychotherapy. Case in point: We have delusions of grandeur: When given a measure of authority, we become megalomaniacs like the proverbial fly on the carabao's back who shouts: "I'm the king of the world!" -- then we follow-up with: "Please, don't let this feeling end!" Furthermore, we're too greedy: What we do is our own business, but we ride on the achievements of other people -- then we think they owe us their victories. Also, we have paranoia: everybody's a subversive and a terrorist, and we burn book we haven't even read because other people who also haven't read them heard etc. Plus, we have a fetish for mudslinging: our politics, showbiz, and mass-media revolve around malice, our national pastime is gossip, and we have obssessions about scandals. On top of which, we have bi-polar disorder: We are either indifferent or hysterical -- clearly, we're schizophrenic: We want to be rich, but we hate businessmen. We want to be famous, but we hate ambitious people. We admire potential leaders, but we complain when they run for higher office. We vote for movie stars, but we complain about celebrities in politics. We call for professionalism, but we force teen stars to have affairs with each other. We search for role models, but we force actors to dress like women and kiss each other. Our idea of patriotism is Heal Our Land, but our idea of unity is My Way. We expect our kids to speak English, but we Tagalize everything. We expect our students to be smart, but we conduct classes like refugee camps -- and our SOP is to lower educational standards so they can gradute ASAP. We demand our human rights, but we treat indigent patients like lepers and hospital watchers like beggars. We demand due process, but we arrest poor suspects and fallguys without warrants then present them to the media without trial. We want our prisoners to be rehabilitated, but we treat them like animals. We hail the rule of law, but we sabotaged Nicole, Cam and Gudani -- and encouraged Garcillano, Bolante, Strunk and Palparan. We lure foreign investors, but we can't even have honest public biddings. We want a Strong Republic, but we can't even have honest elections. We are "worth dying for," but we'd rather have "a government run like hell." And what it all comes down to: is that government's saying it's Cha-cha time -- 'coz they got one hand on our pockets, and the other one is signing a new E.O.


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