Tuesday, 15 August 2017

Digital Transformation: From an observer's view

Digital Transformation: From an observer's view




"What was done?
Why was it done?
How was it done?
What was found?
What is the significance of the findings?"

Change has been inevitable in this era of digitalisation. As people living in an increasingly complex world, technology and information flow continues to expand and grow, bringing about fundamental and rapid changes to the society.

And that kind of change, as it was in the past, affects jobs, affects roles, as every organisation, in pursuit of competitiveness and security, has to adapt "something new": for adaptability has becoming paramount and in it includes rethinking or updating the entire structure all because of digital transformation. There person-to-person contacts be replaced with indirect contacts, that individual, group, or even institutional behaviour affects when technology has becoming a permanent fixture.

Yes, technology can be good, that information that emanates from it is becoming widely accessible, but, is it trustworthy? To use Alvin Toffler's FutureShock, it argued that society is undergoing an enormous structural change, or rather say a "revolution" from an industrial society to a "super-industrial society" that is, brought about by the recent trends such as that digital transformation and its sudden flow of information. And that kind of change hath overwhelmed people as any other wonder: that the people who hath felt the wonders of IPhone are the descendants of those who sought the wonders of Ford Model T, Boeing 747, to those of Chicken Nuggets and Juice concentrate dissolved in water.

This note deals about on how this so-called digital transformation has affected humanity and its well-being. That besides affecting tasks at work, of administering, of shifting values and decision making, will it also affect humanity's active process of becoming aware of and making choices towards a healthy and fulfilling life?

For sure everyone knows that Wellness as more than just "being free from illness" but also dynamic process of change and growth affecting physical, mental, and social well-being. But with the digitalisation of man and its society, will it affect its own wellness? Remember: the mechanisation, electricisation, and digitalisation of societies has improved man's yearning for comfort, seeing anything that requires strenuous effort be end "in an instant" like what this person said earlier.

However, that same automation will also make man alienated from himself. If they wanted to bring progress and development in all sectors, then why need to alienate man from creating? Creating is something more than just making a product or a service, but a purpose enough to bridge material and spiritual wealth to create a healthy living whole. Or frankly speaking, everyone desires for development wherein full employment is given, wages as well received, living standards raised, and social justice carefully enacted- but not by machine alone, but also by the one who has feeling, desire, power, will to impose that "ideal".

In case of health, the rapid use of technology has extended lives but there are illnesses that are also caused by that same use of technology: that in case of the BPO sector, it has been a major subject regarding health and workplace conditions according to a case study. There it identified health problems like:
a) muscular pains due to workstation setups and monitor levels,
b) diseases brought about by unhealthy lifestyles,
c) psychosocial disorders owing to a stressful work environment.

Worse, besides layoffs, they are threatened with replacing man with artificial intelligence. Capitalism has utilised that setting as profit oriented, that by replacing man with machinery without consideration for the former, then, that 'development' has nothing to do with uplifting man nor reviving nature.


Sorry if this person afforded to criticise the idea knowing that he recognises the wonders of science and technology, of its pursuit to uplift humanity and frankly speaking, to create an "effortless lifestyle" through research and development; but, as what Ted Kaczynski said:

"scientific research is a surrogate activity for scientists, and that for this reason science marches on blindly, without regard to the real welfare of the human race or to any other standard, obedient only to the psychological needs of the scientists, and of the government officials, and corporation executives who provide the funds for research..."

Such realities be like the one who truly benefit are the multinationals, not the countries; of profiteers, not the laborers; the companies, not the communities. Let it be called as the "fourth industrial revolution", but it can be a reaction in itself as capitalists, and not the people, who initiated it in the first place. True that in digital transformation means improved security, continuous flow of goods and information, creating an empowered populace; but in an actually-existing capitalist setting wherein everything is profit oriented, then sorry to say but having an aspiration realised be like a consolidation of interests, supports the indefinite intensification of capitalism itself, possibly in order to bring about a technological singularity.

And in it no wonder why Mohandas Gandhi said:

""What I object to, is the craze for machinery, not machinery as such. The craze is for what they call labour-saving machinery. Men go on 'saving labour', till thousands are without work and thrown on the open streets to die of starvation."

As an observer, the idea of transforming societies via technology means creating a setting wherein efficiency, justice, and development been seriously taken through. People from all walks of life hath enjoyed it ever since technology has unleashed man's bests.
So is its worsts. Also admittingly speaking, there are those who still have less grasp of that digital transformation amidst the increasing digitalisation of the society, what more of its relevance: is it relevant to every matter society regularly encounters? Does it have a social, financial, environmental, even cultural impact especially in developing and underdeveloped countries? Does it invoke the ideals and aspirations? Promotes both bests of the individual and of the community?

Sorry to ask these questions or thoughts that creeps every concerned's mind and conscience, but as technology intensifies further (and thus making people empowered), and at the same time seeing Capitalism desperately clinging to its post, then that transformation may lead to a path: either to an atmosphere wherein justice and development has been well-served, or a well-hidden barbarism that intensifies actually-existing repression.

Friday, 4 August 2017

Dutertism: revolutionary or counterreactionary?

Dutertism: is it revolutionary or counterreactionary?

Notes after Rodrigo Duterte's authoritarian-populist actions
if not an imitation of past authoritarian despots in a modern
yet still third world setting




Initially known for his arsenic statements and bloodied trails, Rodrigo Duterte has been the darling of the common Filipino. With his iron-fisted stance towards crime and some populist reforms, it seems that the president has been trying to do "carrot and stick" tactics enough to "restore order" and to create an example not just in his country but also in the Asian region.
This year every country have done him both homage and criticism, seeing him as an examplar of the Alternative Right and a scourge for the desperate Liberals.

However, amidst this popularity, this person and others concerned sought his sudden and dramatic rise as similar to Mussolini, with all his sentiments and promises, only to found out that the Duterte everyone adored and criticised is nonetheless similar to Engelbert Dollfuss, or even Antonio Salazar, or any other caudillo whose authoritarian-like conservatism is well hidden underneath in the sheet called populism.

Sorry for the comparisons between the Asiatic and of the pre-and-wartime leaders from Europe, but Filipinos are closely tied to the west when it comes to socio-economic and foreign policies to the extent that there is no other difference like any other banana republics the west afforded to coddle; but like most of the pre-and-wartime leaders people afforded to admire and praise, most of Duterte's speeches and actions are extraordinarily unsophisticated behind its frankness. He does listen to both left-wingers like Taguiwalo or Mariano although mostly heeds the appeals and suggestions of Dominguez, Lorenzana, Ano, and other personages from past administrations; he does support programs meant first to consolidate his rule behind the words "change" and "inclusiveness"; but, When he speaks himself, he is tense, awkward, overworked, sincere. There is no pomp or cant in him.

But then, his supporters are still thinking that he is a perfect person to rule besides the late strongman Ferdinand Marcos. As an observer, the president's brand of populism is rooted in the idea of a iron-fisted peace and order, that his arsenic statement and bloodied conclusions against his enemies are justified as if a catharsis; but, in regards to his economic and even its social policies, it seems that Duterte is doing a rehash of past policies, of course with different names and themes enough to differentiate with those of past administrations; intensified by the ruralism of its supporters.

And according to the Ruben Garcia's "Filipino Nationalism under Dutertismo", it stated that:

"Ruralism is an idea formed by a nostalgia. City life, especially in Metro Manila where everything seems to be out of joint, creates a nostalgia for the good old times where food is a matter of going to the local market or asking people what they have to share. Ruralism is a nostalgia in response to the perceived decadence of urban life."

Like Portugal's Salazar, various infrastructures been building ranging from roads to bridges and flyovers, that raw material exports continue in exchange for processed imports from abroad, what more that conservatism is its ruling social policy with all its Christian-based orientations. Like Korea's Park, remittances from the Filipino diaspora remains one of the important pillars to stay afloat the struggling economy. And like Lee Kwan Yew, tries to be pragmatic when it comes to foreign and economic policies, and at times intervenes markets and accommodates outside capital.

But, like his predecessors, Duterte rather still-toyed the idea of industrialisation knowing that these self-sustaining kind of economic reforms advocated by some elements which were successfully implemented under similar circumstances in developing countries, were rejected out of fear that industrialisation would destabilize the country "thanks to those so-called oligarchs", if not having lost potential in regards to manufacturing in general. Conservatives, both Filipino and Foreign, agreed to that kind of view that the country has to depend on imports, outside capital (both investments and remittances), and limiting the manufacturing sector into semiprocessed goods, as well as tourism is if "really where the Philippines can out do many" given that Filipinos are naturally hospitable if not actually having disdain in a full-blown industrialisation, describing it as "passe"in favour of remittances from the diaspora, raw and semi-processed exports, and direct foreign investment.


A revolutionary dream or a counterreactionary reality?

Reasonable indeed how Duterte can be compared to these late foreign rulers besides of his own predecessors given their economic polices of the past has been doing so in today's Philippines, both to create an atmosphere of development and to curry further both domestic and foreign captial; but, back to the main topic, Duterte, being an Asiatic counterpart to the ones from the West and a non-western examplar for the Alternative Right, is more of a living remnant of a past: a caudillo who tries to consolidate his rule both by carrot and stick, who tries to appear himself progressive, a moderniser of sorts yet actually acts like any other conservative with some followers trying to insist the regime's beneficence, or . Like Mussolini who was a once socialist, Duterte self-proclaimingly described as a socialist and as a left-winger who promised numerous "revolutionary changes"; while at the same time like Engelbert Dollfuss, as he is surrounded by neoliberal and conservative, militarist elements similar to Mises, Schuschnigg, and Stahremberg; And these are in a form of personages like Dominguez, Tugade, Esperon, Ano, and Lorenzana.
But the difference between Duterte and other authoritarians is this: he afforded to deal with the left both in a positive and in a negative manner. He did appointed left-wing cabinet secretaries who end sidelined by the Commission on Appointments, much more that he himself through some of his statements and actions expressed in a negative light towards the left, ranging from cuss words against his former professor and communist party founder Jose Maria Sison, to those of scrapping the peace process in favour of "flattening the hills"- zones controlled by the communists.

Awkward isn't it? In seeing a Filipino president acting in a manner of a caudillo, a cacique, a feudal lord whose fanatics be like paying homage so badly. He would have eschewed democracy like the late Thailand's Thanarat, or stressing order like Greece's Ionnides, but, being a strongman emphasises much of retaining order while at the same time creating an atmosphere wherein "change", "reform", or even "restructuring" as gradually undergoing. It may appear socially oriented, but, it turns out to be driven by upholding the status quo and economic in its very orientation.
And in speaking of that late Austrian dictator, Dollfuss’s authoritarian policies were in his view only a quick fix to safeguard Austria’s independence—unsuitable in the long run, especially if the general political mentality did not change” (H├╝lsmann 2007: 683–684). And if correct, then that Libertarian Mises saw that Authoritaian Dollfuss and his form of fascism in much the same way as Mussolini’s in spite of its obvious conservatism as different from Mussolini''s assuming radicalism: as an “emergency makeshift.” It was also the same Mises who contended that the violence and authoritarianism of fascism had been provoked by the equally violent and brutal nature of revolutionary socialism:

“The deeds of the Fascists and of other parties corresponding to them were emotional reflex actions evoked by indignation at the deeds of the Bolsheviks and Communists. As soon as the first flush of anger had passed, their policy took a more moderate course and will probably become even more so with the passage of time” (Mises 1978: 49).

And frankly speaking, Duterte's clique, mostly coming from past regimes, did shared that kind of thought brought about by Mises, that through a system-sponsored catharsis pointing against the anti-order has to be enacted no matter how bloodied it is, as if it leads to order and stability, and "can become moderate" as that order restores its stability. That the recent killing of drug-dealing personages, statements like "flattening the rebel-infested hills with aerial bombings", and its martial rule over Mindanao are examples of that flush of anger in which his followers agreed upon to it as if "this brings order no matter what how bloody it would be." If that's the case then that kind of justice that doesn't require due processes is but a "justicia de gatillo", whose power rather comes from the barrel of the gun.
And the motive behind that "justicia de gatillo" is not just to create an atmosphere of stability, justice, and peace according to its apologists and unrepentant supporters, nor even create numerous radical changes the way its red counterparts took guns and assert numerous, revolutionary changes; but rather an atmosphere of fear and silence, enough to create conditions for a compradore-landlord sided kind of "development", whose supporters sees it in a positive sight as if it is revolution itself-a revolution using that kind of "rule of law" that maintained rather that status quo!

Again, according to Garcia:

"Today, the nostalgia for the Martial law years reverberates in the outbursts of nationalisms that decry the decadence of contemporary cosmopolitan life. Disobedience to authority, rebelliousness, apathy, consumerism and so on are highlighted as repulsive values of the urban life. To counteract this, nationalism(s) revolve around the mystification of the past of rural Filipinos who cooperated with their leaders for the betterment of society, regardless of political color. In this case, market society offers a level playing ground upon which traditional values must inform the relations between people while at the same maintaining a highly permissive workplace. Hence, one can complain about work and at the same time obey with commitment. The organic unity of society is sustained by perceivable enemies: drug addicts, drug pushers, rebellious students, decadent bourgeois thinking and so on are seen as external bodies that disturb the harmonious flow of the organic body, the removal of which guarantees the continued healthy lifestyle.

Let it be called as a "rule of law" and a "restoration of order" no matter how repressive it is, but given the reality of what the regime goes on, that the downtrodden continues to be maligned and accused just because some are using drugs, or denied of homes and  arable lands, of being submissive to various interests both domestic and abroad, then sorry to say, but it intensifies conflicts, if not thinking that kind of law isn't law at all but creating a scenario wherein behind that illusion of order and progress lies discontent.

Or to paraphrase Allen Severino's: 

"That this Caesar, the murderer of the Republic of oligarchs, is but a paper tiger in the end whose rule is dependent on a laughable excuse of discipline and societal reinvigoration that like his persona, will collapse like a house of cards once this illusion of aura fades away with his dissolution."

Remember: it was during Dollfuss when a civil war against the social democrats began, followed by a putsch led by the Austrian Nazis that led to his demise (and replaced by a weak Schuschnigg followed by an Anschluss with Hitler's Germany); it was also during Salazar when dissidents like Humberto Salgado and Bishop Antonio Ferreira Gomes spoke against the prime minister because of his unjust social policies (in spite of Salazar's social catholicism); or even Korea's Park, who, in spite of his "achievements", end killed by the bullets of the KCIA.
These personages whom Duterte and his supporters maybe have looked upon for an inspiration for a pseudo-corporatist setup utilising authoritarianism with a populist appeal (besides Marcos); if not a person who has the guts to be above the law "in order to uphold the law" (sounds F├╝hrerprinzip) yet, with the realities such as prevailing narcopolitics and its bloodied responses, attempts to quash dissent by carrot and stick, and capitulation to interests whilst parroting patriotic sentiments, hath made its own brand of nationalism same as his predecessors: shallow and meant to appease tourists if not children.

And not wonder why there are still rebels continue to fight in order to make numerous revolutionary change happen. Change is truly coming, but from the people themselves and not from a single person and its clique who at first sworn to protect the status quo.

Monday, 24 July 2017

For a better tomorrow amidst existing conflicts

For a better tomorrow amidst existing conflicts

Notes after President Rodrigo Duterte's 
State of the Nation Address
last July 24, 2015



To paraphrase Mr. Magaling's words, that it seems how everyone is living in a society that is beyond the possibilities of today's condition. Basically, with all the aspirations to carry forward, they are trying to live in the impossible; but, since those who carry are also limited to society's convention and its orders, then lies its limitations to its own possibilities.

If one is still trying to demand the impossible, especially in an order who thinks these aspirations hinders their continuity, then perhaps it is actually wishing to change what is possible by taking the impossible from the corner and making it possible: by any means even going beyond the parameters of legality.

And that is what currently happening nowadays in the Philippines.

With the recent events surrounding the present Duterte administration, it seems that the atmosphere of hope has becoming impossible both in statement and in action: that with Martial Law extending its duration and possibly extending all over the country, as well as other unjust policies favouring the interests of the few, it seems that change is becoming a mere word at all if not a counterreaction to an existing reaction.

For in spite of his populism, it is becoming more obvious that President Duterte continues to lay the foundations for authoritarian rule under US imperialist tutelage like his predecessors. Sorry for the thought but in spite of his promise for a non-aligned foreign policy or even his anti-American sentiment, everyone knows how the Military, being American-trained and armed will always cling to the thought that their Americanism prevails than those of their leader.

And to think that he, being completely intoxicated with authoritarian-like powers, Duterte is mistaken in thinking that he can suppress both the Filipino and Bangsamoro people in their resistance to the oppression and exploitation by the ruling oligarchy and their US imperialist masters. Be it contractualisation, growing debts brought about by demands for infrastructure, and martial law with its growing militarisation and aerial bombings against Filipinos, Moros, and Lumads alike.

For sure apologists would oppose this note, but the obviousness brought about by his actions meant that he is seriously adhering in maintaining the present order- but given his populism he has to accommodate the people, particularly the left with some piecemeal reforms and a semblance of willingness to adapt their views.
However, with the recent events such as Martial Law in Mindanao and its intensified militarisation, what more of low intensity actions against the left, then the so-called "leftist" president is succeeding only in stoking the broad masses of the Filipino and Bangsamoro people to unite, wage mass struggles and conduct acts of resistance. Be it from Marawi, Davao, to those of Metro Manila, the people who are facing crises are awakened and willing to take the idea of change in their hands.

And the concerned cannot blame these people who converged near Batasang Pambansa all for being radical in their assertions what more of their actions. With the incidents brought upon by a continuity of low-intensity conflict, it makes an atmosphere of peace and development be impossible especially in the countryside-that since the enemy fire first, do they have no right to resist? Of course not! They can't just sit down and do nothing  To think that the Lumad's settlements been militarised and nowadays subjected to martial rule, will they agree in his statement especially after letting them to "go home" instead of asserting their calls to end militarisation in their communities? Of generalising the Lumads as rebellious after being aligned to the revolutionaries and its view of justice against despotic landords, large-scale miners, and its attack dogs in uniform?

After all, these scenarios also shows that the temporary alliance between the Left and President Duterte has indeed reached its boiling, breaking point rather. When the latter, in his press conference recently, officially ended the peace negotiations between the government and the Left with awful repercussions. For all his anti-US posturing (particularly the desire for bringing back the Balangiga bells after decades as war booty during the Philippine-American war), Duterte has had no concrete steps to remove US military forces from the country. Instead, he now coyly seeks US support for martial law in the guise of fighting terrorism.

And besides the United States, Duterte had to deal with the Chinese. Stuffed with $24 billion of Chinese loans for infrastructure projects, he has practically surrendered the country’s rights. Not a whimper from him while China has transformed the Spratly islands into their military fortress.

And to think that his regime is trying to equate itself with development, his economic team rather continues its cherished neoliberal policies that keeps the economy dependent on foreign investments and loans, favor rich oligarchs, and hit the poor the hardest. Also contrary to his statements, that he has not junked contractualization, failed to freely distribute land to farmers, and now wishes to impose new and harsher taxes.

But on second thought, some of Duterte's statements during the address be like indeed trying to be as radical as possible as the Left like his appeals for industrialisation, utilisation of natural resources for domestic use, or even continuing the agrarian reform program under Mariano; but, to think that he is cornered by a camarilla of militarists and compradores alike, will his so-called "radical" ideas succeed? Remember: most of his projects are through high-interest loans that has to be paid for decades, what more that with the negotiations suspended, the agreement on Socio-Exonomic Reforms (that may also support most of Duterte's goals) be end just papers! So much for the neoliberal and militarist men that made this low intensity conflict made!

Anyway, despite all the bullshits, Duterte's desire for a better tomorrow should be realised, but to support his statement, the peoples message is simple: for a realisation of social and economic reforms, for a genuine just and lasting peace! Meanwhile, particular concessions like conditional free tuition for students of state universities and colleges giving free homes to homeless Kadamay members, among others, were achieved not because of the benevolence of Duterte but were the results of hard-won mass struggles by different sectors for their democratic rights.

He may babble against the "National Democratic" Left time and again, but if one may ask: isn't that these "National Democratic" left who seriously lead the demand what he actually wanted for? Of Peace, Land, Bread, Social Justice and Sovereignty?

Again, he needs not to depend on his neoliberal-militarist camarilla- there's the people concerned who are willing to help him.

Or is this person idealise that scenario?


Tuesday, 11 July 2017

"Is 'Change' going further...or going backwards?"

"Is 'Change' going further...or going backwards?"

(Notes on the first year of the Duterte administration,
its confusing stances,
and increasing discontent)




At first, one would say that the present Duterte Administration hath becoming a confusing one. Given his numerous promises ranging from restoring peace and order to create an atmosphere wherein reforms be enacted, and most aren't been realised, it seems that people forgot that the "Sawali Caesar" whom they praised and adored still represents the order which he ought to uphold and defend; and at worse, that system he pledge to uphold is itself, centuries-old rotten.

With numerous populist-driven projects being undertaken on one hand and various neoliberal and blood-stained policies and actions on the other, it seems that the administration has becoming same as its predecessors, of "frijoles y fusiles" kind of nonsense that meant to appease both the common people (who most of them praised Duterte) and the present order (who, despite benefited from Duterte still opposes his statements).
Sorry for the thought, but as everyone knows about the numerous deaths under a gun-based 'justice system', of retaining neoliberal policies, of sudden changing of mind, and appointing former military officials and sidelining progressives, it seems that the Duterte everyone loved and his populism turns out to be as any other retention of interests. For sure no one likes to be an object of criticism, and Filipinos are no more than any other people to be criticized due to their actions. Sadly, fanatics be like their words are as empty as their souls as they insist the justness of their idol, that his brand of justice, no matter how swift and does not need due processes, seemed better than undergoing a slow procedure such as those from the courts; worse, when their idol is the target of criticism, they should not be expected always to agree with it.

However, as the concerned thinks that the Philippines hath becoming "nihilistic" the way it desires to create a "new Jerusalem" on earth "in its most desperate and delusional way" in order to overcome the limitations and errors of the its own pasts, that by "moving on" is as if reemphasising optimism; that in conforming to a myriad of policies, no matter how it is unjust, means uniting in spirit of so-called "national interest"; then is criticism, or rather say, freedom to dissent and offering an community-based "alternative change" be allowed in that setting such as a state-sponsored bloodshed?

After all, to these people, especially those apologists who also desiring for social change, they wanted that change to be in an instant- in case of Duterte's way of administering things, his brand of populism, in their minds be like the idea of "instant elimination" of injustice, an "instant transition" to order, an instant transformation from a backward setting to a much progressive one in spite of having modern buildings and technology; but, to think that some of his "supporters" are trying to consolidate their interests (like those from Lapanday to those of US-supported cliques in the Military) while parroting words like "change", will that "instant change" be realised? Perhaps most of these voters who actually sneered by the idea of instant change, transformation, renewal, or any other words made as a "counterreaction" to an existing reaction, hath mistaken for a revolutionary siezure of power and its subsequent indispensable political condition for the country's transformation; that in the end these so-called politicos, no matter how popular they are, rather reaffirm the status of the nation as a semicolonial-semifeudal entity with some token statement/action to appease the voter.
Sorry for these words but since Duterte and most of his men are at first reaffirming the status quo, of what is change in the first place? Even those from the left knew it and willing to turn against him as possible.

And to think that because of these bullshits that brought this person and others concerned into numerous, long, written expressions, is it quite clear that the so-called "democratic" and "republican" ideology of the so-called "Philippine republic" is incapable of defending, developing, empowering, uplifiting the people of the archipelago? That with all the policies that justifies a country's sellout to interests makes nationalism and social justice unnecessary? And that with interests stubbornly insisting ideas of multinational integration and subservience to a neoliberal entity, does it equate to nation building? No matter what these apologists say (be it in an apologetical or the usual heckling manner), it is important to comprehend that criticism especially regarding the president's braggish moves to those of his unclear policies; as well as the alternatives offered by the concerned to take it seriously and constructively on its own terms, knowing that criticism and offering just alternatives is also part of democratic processes, and not just dismiss it as inspired by a mere malice, jealousy, or ignorance. Sorry if these radicals afforded to burn effigies the way they chant radical slogans and assertions, knowing that in their burning and chanting meant obvious discontent to a person who, in spite of their "brand" of populism, still sworn to uphold a rotting order in the first place.

Or frankly speaking, whatever the system and its apologists insists, that the nation will remain backward in spite of its "modernity" all thanks to those unjust "policies"; that the Philippines cannot stand on it's own, nor even dynamic. As thousands chose to be guest workers abroad, and letting landlords and compradores aggravate feudo-capitalism with neoliberal policies, the country that has boasted much of its patriotism is nothing but a shell of what hath been desired was- if not an entity within a supranational organisation wherein big power blocs, alongside its domestic stooges, would play divide and conquer in its worst form.
And in it makes that 'change' under the present order nothing but a hollow phrase. True that there are those who supported him because of his willingness to make radical changes, such as this person who appreciated Duterte appointing Mariano for Agrarian Reform, Taguiwalo for Social Welfare, and Lopez for the Environment and Natural Resouces; but these three know that in spite of their serious intent (and people somehow satisfied what they did as secretaries in their respective departments), they also know that knowing how Duterte is at first, sworn to upheld the status quo, is also surrounded by those whose interests prevailed than those of the people be it the Neoliberalist Diokno and Dominguez to the Militarist Lorenzana and Esperon.

True that from the broad masses of workers, peasants, unemployed, students, teachers and other small professionals, initially voted for him, are increasingly disgruntled as they continue to suffer from bondage to the soil with all its feudal exploitations, rising costs of living, acute unemployment and job insecurity, low wages, natural and man-made disasters, widespread epidemics, and lack of affordable and quality social services. Millions of students continue to be burdened by tuition increases and rising costs of education in spite of promises for free education and increasing budget in state colleges and universities.
To the great dismay of workers, not only has Duterte failed to fulfill his promise to end contractualization, but instead he has even reinforced the policy by setting regulations for it. Workers’ wages remain extremely low and inefficient to meet increasing living standards. Workers continue to suffer from dangerous working conditions leading to fires and other workplace accidents. And contrary to the peasant clamor to stop land conversions, Duterte, who in spite of having Mariano, chose to sideline the former's serious assertion for agrarian reform as he rather push­­­­es for the conversion of thousands of hectares of land, particularly in Mindanao, to become oil palm plantations. He has given scant support to measures to distribute land at Hacienda Luisita and gave mere token support to the struggle of the Lapanday farmers to occupy their land. Declarations of support for free land distribution has served only as soundbytes and rhetorical pieces meant to be "appreciated" by his apologists. He has perpetuated the policy of rice importation to the detriment of local peasants and the general public in spirte of promises to impose food self-sufficiency and support for local peasantry.

Thus, with these inconvenient facts makes one ask: Is change going further? Or Going Backwards? 

Thursday, 6 July 2017

"Remnants of an almost forgotten spring"

"Remnants of an almost forgotten spring"


It's been few weeks ago when this person has gathered some of his poems from his social media account. Made months ago and almost forgotten, these works, as any other works he gathered and posted, invoked melancholy, love, sense of getting inspired, the yearness for freedom, the desire to reclaim lost hopes, and the pursuit to realise appealing aspirations.

"Memorare to a 'Sophia Incarnate'"

It is worth unforgettable especially when I first met you
And I even wonder why your grace captivate me though
But your friendliness seemed to be what I observe most
Makes one inspired and renewed one's confidence after days lost.
I felt your love unto me my sweet beloved one
To you I do come once alone, nothing, and weary leaving things undone
I may be nothing compared to others most care to see
But the flames of desire befell every hindrances as it be
O beloved, my Sophia incarnate
Despite not my petitions
But through you, in this lowly work, heed and reply to me.


"To a Cherished maiden"

How is it possible
To leave me mere alone
As I love you really
Hope believe me.
Be it rains come or shine
Be it night or day time
Your love worth enduring
worthy of mine

As the flowers now bloom
Springtime has conquered doom
Blossoms made I heartfelt
To recall you
If dreams and struggles same
Out of love quite so rich
And it is thus deathless
Hence, believe me!

And if the clarion played
Calling to fight again
Will you leave me still
Or join with me?
And if I feel the pain,
Hope through your womb I lie;
And if you true cherish me,
I would like to die.

"Without you there will be no springtime"

Without you there will be no springtime
For you brought the warmth in my heart
In spite of the truth that made me I
Not to pursue if not end apart
But in spite of all these still I care about you
No matter what the trials we both face
For the fact that I am ought to be true
Out of days brought to me amaze

Without you there will be no red roses
Blooming over my once barren heart
In spite of having a continuous race
Against time trying to finish from the start
And in spite of all these I carry the little of your love
Out of your wonders made me entice
To engage something as if from above
That is trying to realise

Without you there will be no moonlights
Casting over my everyday glooms
If not trying to break most thy sickening frights
Nightmares suddenly coming soon
And in spite of all these the chimneys bring smokes of hope
Out of the engines churning what we desire
A future of love, of wonder, in spite of bitterness to cope
For in the end one wanted that is to admire.


"A Song for Gia"
(Inspired from a song made by Oktoberklub)

It was a year ago when I first saw her
She is quite friendly and  she is nice
And be inspire and yet I'm shy to be together
That made me sad and think I don't know why
To think that I made a poem that turned to song
And draw her that perhaps it will last long
I think my heart conveys to her that make me end cry
She is part of me I don't know why?

Chorus I
For she inspires me what I'm going to be
For she gives me that something has meaning
For she makes my world moving come and going
That can become closer as you and me

Do she remember the day I gave her rememb'ring
After being requested last year's Christmas day
I know she like it and perhaps we both end happy
And yet I end sad for she was with man good looking
I do remember when I see her dancing
Her moves perhaps compels me worth writing
And yet still don't know why she has something and I am nothing
Perhaps we're in different worlds that is warring

Chorus II
For she inspires me what I'm going to be
For she gives meaning that keeps us moving
For she makes my world moving come and going
To revolution that is worth fighting

And this time this writer end up writing a story
Recalling the memories that end up fiction
Thinking before forgetting that her name forever lies
That in that tale perhaps end we in union
Perhaps if she recall me will ever she revisit
I don't think so perhaps yes perhaps no
And yet despite forgetting i still never lose her
For she is the one that made me worth inspire

Chorus III
Yet she inspires me what I'm going to be
Yet she gives me something has meaning
Come with me my cherished as the red star shining
To revolution that is worth fighting
To revolution that is worth fighting
To revolution that is worth fighting


"A Song for Karen"

://My Karen Mae, My Katleah Beloved
When will be the time that you'll come?//:

For I remember someone with a lovely smile
With her looks as if love comes almost a mile
Through her eyes casts hope that one cannot resist
With a heart that's to feel with all that she sees

For I remember the times that she sings all the songs
Putting love on the melodies and words that written on
Her voice is worth remembering as if hums to sleep
In the night where dreamtimes whose door opened and to keep

://My Karen Mae, My Katleah Beloved
When will be the time that you'll come?//:

For I remember the times that she dared to struggle
For her beauty is molded by the love of people
As if like a flower on the field that once fought
Where blood shed its soil and therein lies our hopes

For I remember the times the battles paved the way
The way lights lit the ramp where she once walked and played
Will succeed in controlling the foe and its steel
And her calls urged the rest to join for the final deal

://My Karen Mae, My Katleah Beloved
When will be the time that you'll come?://

I all remembered those times for she is a good friend.
Is it because of her beauty or her will to defend?
She's been loved by her colleagues as she kept her stand
What else I should recall those times before this song ends?

And now she have returned from the epics been made
Perhaps dreams been fulfilled and debts rightfully paid
My beloved, my comrade, my good friend?
With all those good times you are with me...

Saturday, 1 July 2017

Lion Brand: The story of M.Y San and its legacy

Lion Brand: The story of M.Y San and its legacy


It should be "Quality Biscuit",
 but since it is also a "Quality Product", why not?


For sure everyone enjoys a pack of cracker brought from a sari-sari store. Be it "SkyFlakes" or "Fita", M. Y. San Biscuits has a variety of products that cater to all income levels and age groups. Despite intense competition from other biscuit companies, there is no absolute distinction in these markets as practically all socioeconomic groups can afford, appreciate, and enjoy M.Y. San's various products.

Anytime, from the lowly sari-sari store to the supermarket, M.Y. San products are enjoyed by everyone, given its good taste and flavour.

However, behind those familiar products comes a legacy such as a family whose patriotism, perseverance, and filial piety had kept the company thriving for decades, until its eventual takeover by Monde Nissin in 2001. 

Here's its story, hope that everyone enjoys especially those who read whilst eating.


A patriot, his ice cream, and his crackers


According to its website, M.Y. San was started from a lowly Ice Cream Parlor in then bustling street of Escolta, Manila in 1935. And its founders, the Mar Family, had taken a tradition of creating delectably wholesome snack foods, especially those of biscuits.

However, another source stated that the company was established earlier than the commonwealth era, as Mar Yuck-San established Escolta Ice Cream Parlor in Manila with the help of his two younger brothers and a fellow kinsman by the name of Mar Chew who learned the craft of baking in Honolulu, Hawaii. 

A native of Xiangshan in Guangdong China, M.Y. San moved to the Philippines in 1900, and like any other compatriots seeking for greener pastures, M.Y. San engaged in business such as building an ice cream parlor. Back then Ice Cream was a rarity as few establishments set-up ice cream parlors (maybe because of lack of ice plants around Manila!) yet afforded by many both Filipinos and Americans alike.

And according to Lou Gopal's "Nostalgia Manila", he stated that M.Y. San's "The Escolta Ice Cream Parlor" was at #69 Escolta pictured above next to Alfredo Roensch and Co. around 1910. The parlor did thrive, however, that whole section in Escolta would later be demolished, as it replaced by the well-known Crystal Arcade of Andres Luna de San Pedro, which was known as one of the most modern buildings located along the country's then premier business district.

Souce: Nostalgia Manila
But behind that lowly ice cream parlor was a different treat. As M.Y. San, along with his two younger brothers and a fellow kinsman named Mar Chew, who learned the craft of baking in Honolulu, included the making of biscuits as part of their menu. And after initial difficulties, the ice cream parlor/bakery achieved success which enabled M.Y. San to expand into new markets.

However, like any other Chinese who worked abroad in order to "bring home their bacons", M.Y. San, being an ardent patriot and supporter of Dr. Sun Yat-Sen's revolutionary cause, decided to move back to his homeland after the 1912 revolution (and even set up his biscuit factory at Hong Kong!), and left his business to his partner, Mar Chew, who continued managing and even moved the site to a corner, which was beside Luna's Crystal Arcade. And by 1920, the first ovens and machinery were installed at it's first family-owned factory at Calle Sales, whilst the restaurant also served as its selling area.

How a founder's wife kept the company going
(and introducing SkyFlakes)

Fifteen years later, in 1935, after M.Y. San left the Philippines for his homeland, Mar Chew continued running both the restaurant and the biscuit business; and it continued to be thrived with more new and loyal customers. But that same year, Mar Chew died whilst M.Y. San's brothers, who also happened to be co-owners, left for Hong Kong. However, his widow, Chung Chi, re-organized the establishment as M.Y. San Biscuits Inc. (earlier as M.Y. San & Co.) with its factory at San Juan Rizal, whose logo features "LION BRAND" in it as its trademark.

The rest, as all Filipinos know, has become history. The growth of the company over the next few years was unprecedented. Although the outbreak of the Second World War with its Japanese Occupation forced the company to virtually stop operations, people behind the company never ceased.
And like any other company, M.Y. San did recover from the ashes of war. It continued to serve its customers the usual biscuit, ice cream, and snacks from its stall at Escolta beside the ruined Crystal Arcade. It was a hard but successful uphill climb for Chung Chi, her children, as well as the workers who are loyal to the company; The San Juan factory was also moved to Cainta, Rizal with its facilities expanded further.

Source: LotNut.com
Besides maintaining its familar brands like "Lion Soda Crackers", "Butter Cookies", and "Graham Crackers", M.Y. San also created its brand of soda crackers named "SkyFlakes", that became a well-known product in the 1960s; it also made the company thrive not just economically, but leaving it with a cultural legacy as Filipinos, in recalling familiar brands, equate M.Y. San with its signature SkyFlakes and Fita crackers after being sold from the supermarket down to the sari sari store, a staple for school recesses to those of funerals. 

Source: Nostalgia Manila
However, their decades-old restaurant in Escolta, despite being known by many for its snacks (like ice cream of course!), eventually handed over to another as they focused their time and effort in the much-lucrative biscuitry business. While numerous ads (like those below) were shown how M.Y. San was described as the "most modern biscuit company" in the Philippines, producing biscuits of various brands, catering to both loyal and new customers.

And because of that perseverance, M.Y. San hath made greater efforts to maintain its timeless prestige not just in the local biscuit industry despite competition from other biscuit companies like La Pacita, Rebisco, and Fibisco; but also to meet outside demands aborad, whose Filipino diaspora wanting to take a bite of a local biscuit such as SkyFlakes.
Thus, to help bridge the distance with homesick Filipinos abroad, M.Y. San began by first exporting to Guam from its Cainta plant in the 1970s. Since then, it has exported its products to other continents as well; today, M.Y. San is available throughout the Philippines and in some parts of the East and West coasts of the United States, Europe, Canada, the Middle East, Australia, and in South East ASia.  Its high standards for quality and use of select ingredients, which put a premium on freshly-baked goodness, hath earned numerous awards for its brands as well as the distinction of being a consistent favorite amongst various international markets.


However, in 2001, after decades of ownership under the Mar family, M.Y. San Biscuits was acquired by Monde Nissin, a diversified food company as part of its expansion and became known as "Monde M.Y. San". Originally known as "Monde Denmark Nissin" and is known for its variety of biscuits and noodles, is owned also by a Filipino Chinese named Betty Ang, known as the 19th richest person in the Philippines, with a net worth of $905 million in 2014, according to Forbes.

Currently, from its Cainta and Laguna plants, M.Y. San continues to meet demands from its loyal customers by creating SkyFlakes and other well-known brands; on the other hand, a snack corner known as "Escolta Ice Cream and Snacks" continues to thrive on the same spot where M.Y. San's "Escolta Restaurant" stood by, sadly, it ain't under Mar Chew's descendants at all.

Perhaps, only its timeless, mouthwatering legacy remained inside that age old building, where once Mr. and Mrs. Mar Chew and family invested their lives, labours, and all.

sources:
http://superbrands.s3.amazonaws.com/AAA%20MASTER%202%20PAGE%20PDF%20Case%20Studies/Philippines/Philippines%20Edition%202/Philippines%20Edition%202%20Sky%20Flakes.pdf
http://www.mysan.com.ph/
http://industrialhistoryhk.org/the-three-kings-of-biscuits-m-y-san-m-p-san-and-pacific

Thursday, 22 June 2017

"In Pursuit of modern (yet rooted), holistic form of health and wellness"

"In Pursuit of modern (yet rooted), holistic form of health and wellness"

(Or all after the idea of integrating both eastern and western modalities in healthcare,
its benefits, and its relevance amidst opposition by interests)




"Chinese Medicine and Pharmacology are a great treasurehouse, and efforts should be made to explore and raise them to a higher level."

These are the words Chairman Mao Zedong stated in 1958 in urging medical workers to develop a new medical theory and practise by combining the bests from both eastern and western methods. And also according to him, the key to that fusion was for western-oriented medical practitioners to learn from the eastern, specifically the Chinese system. It may sound difficult at first knowing that these two medical systems are quite difficult to understand and hence, difficult to merge all its "bests"; but with the demand for better health care, one would say that it was necessary to combine in order to improve health care and to contribute in China's efforts in modernisation. And in it somehow also provided an inspiration to those whose idea of integrating the so-called "bests" from both eastern and western methods as necessary as part of meeting the demands for better healthcare and wellness.


Looking back from an old article

In an article from "China Reconstructs" made last November 1972, a Chinese kid named Kuo Pin was suffering from Pneumonia and was running a temperature of 39 degrees celsius and having a bluish discoloration on her face and around her mouth. She was having a shortness of breath as her respiratory rate is 98 per minute, whilst her pulse rate was 200 per minute, and was extremely fretful. It was also according to the article that from every symptom Kuo Pin hath suffered it end pointed to a severe case of bronchopneumonia of a spasmodic type. And in it doctors immediately administered oxygen, intravenous drip, and intravenous injections of a cardiotonic and an antispasmodic which was of the Chinese traditional type. They also gave her some Chinese medicine orally but no antibiotics of any kind. And in it made her breathing easier while her respiration and heartbeat had slowed down four hours after given the first treatment. She was continued to be given several more injections of Chinese medicine by her doctors, that in another three hours having the patient's face showed good color and in good spirits. However, in spite of relief doctors kept her under observation for four days and discharged her on the fifth day fully recovered from her illness.

Sounds propganda-ish isn't it? But China's idea of utilising both eastern and western methods somehow created a modern way of treating patients. It made immense efforts in producing medicines coming from traditional sources and using modern manufacturing methods, of some cases seeing doctors using acupuncture instead of anaesthesia during surgeries, these are somehow driven by the fact that they are serving the people using their knowledge;
And since truth exists in an objective reality, the sole criterion of gaining truth is through practice. But to think that instead of merging the "bests" in pursuit of attaining truth rather seeing everyone "building walls" and competing against each other, will the health issue be properly resolved and attain a higher level? No! As more and more people are in demand for better healthcare and improving wellness, then it is necessary to merge all the "bests" and create an improved form of integrative medicine that is applicable for everyone.

Remember, the Chinese, Indian, Filipino, or any other people have learned from personal experience over the years that their brand of traditional medicine cures a wide range of disorders and improved their well-being. It may sound strange to most practitioners of western medicine whose views are rather based according to western pharmacopoeias and other texts, yet still that western medicine is a medical system crystallizing healing wisdom gained by peoples from the West over centuries of their struggle against disease, and it is still useful to these eastern people all for the abundant experience, theoretical knowledge, and the sophisticated technology it embodies.

And although it is impossible in many instances to explain in modern scientific terminology the healing powers of traditional medicine, this does not mean they are not entirely scientific, both eastern and western medical systems has its limitations and shortcomings, and it is quite wrong to totally affirm or negate either. Therefore it needs to take time and effort to translate into western, scientific interpretation; and that interpretation can improve modern medicine even better, the way traditional Chinese medicine very often fills certain gaps in Western medicine.

It was also in then-Maoist China wherein cooperative medicine has taken root in every province and region; and millions of "barefoot doctors" are rising from their provinces trying to practise their craft of healing. Large numbers of urban medical personnel had gone on medical tours both in rural and in frontier regions, and most of them skilled in both traditional Chinese and Western-type methods in treating commonly-seen diseases. All of these measures have created the conditions for promoting the general use of Chinese medicinal herbs, alongside new methods of treatment and better application of combined Chinese-Western medicine as encouraged those times. For one of the tasks in confronting China's medical and health workers during that period was to carry out Chairman Mao's instruction of "making the past serve the present and making foreign things serve China".

Again, sounds propaganda-ish but still relevant especially in times everyone is demanding better healthcare and wellness.


Breaking barriers and improving bridges

This writeup may sound "idealistic" knowing that mainstream medical practitioners insist that their methods are superior to those of the others. They do competing as if trying to show to its consumers which is potent and which is not; but then that kind of mentality fails to hinder those whose idea of merging the bests in both eastern and western medicine as necessary to create an improved, better form of medicine. However, that attempt does not mean that in seeing combining eastern and western medicine and pharmacology as just simply adding the one to the other, and certainly not replacing Western medicine and pharmacology by their native counterparts or vice versa.

What is meant is the organic combination of the two medicines coming from different schools, filling in the weaknesses of the one with the strong points of the other and raising the level of both, eventually evolving a new medical science incorporating the best features of both; as what happened in China, in India, and other countries including the Philippines as it recognises alternative medicine and in forming integrative medicine.

And to think that "wall mentality" continues to prevail alongside unhealthy forms of competitions under present-day Capitalism, does it resolve issues on rising mortality rates? New and deadlier diseases? Nope. That mentality hinders progress of genuine medical development no matter how big pharmaceutical companies insist their greatness in "improving the well-being of the people." Worse, that big pharma was researching medicines only not to be produced for the market! Of what is ensuring health if the motivation is plain and simple profit? Of thinking about plain and simple competition instead of cooperation in pursuit of development in the field of medicine, health, and wellness? Remember: there are numerous diseases that has to be controlled if not prevented, and ideally everyone desired to have their life extended and be youthful, so why to build walls instead of bridges in order to attain such lofty goals?

Again, it sounds idealistic but to build bridges and break walls is driven by a communitarian spirit and concrete reality. The latter, particularly in a form of demands for better health care and wellness, makes an impossible possible as those who practise eastern methods see the wonders of its western counterparts, and hence willing to merge its bests in spite of its contradictions. And to think that for more than a century traditional healing techniques, be it Chinese, Indian, Filipino, or any other nationality has existed side by side with western medicine in every country, and both are making salutary contributions to safeguarding the health of their people.

Let's make an example: In one of the adventures of the late Juan Flavier (loosely and roughly translated from its Tagalog original at "Pilipino Star Ngayon"), he met a medicine man commonly known by many as "albularyo". The latter was quite talkative that somehow made the city-bred doctor wanting to listen to his words.
"Believe you me", said the albularyo. "The patient has no problem in the lung, it was 'dry' when at first seen in the X-Ray".
'Dry' or "Tuyo" is the term commonly used by many in referring to the lungs of a tuberculosis patient. "But in spite of that serious problem I still afforded to cure him," said the albularyo.
However, I was not convinced about his statement and I asked him: "how did you cure him?"
Then the albularyo replied:
"I got nine eggs and I had it dried overnight, then I pulvurised it and mixed into the carabao's milk with ampalaya juice. I had it given to the patient three times a day all for three months until he recovered."
Then the albularyo's patient came to meet the two and said:
"Manong, dok, my lungs are cured! The doctors from the city failed to address about my situation before manong cured me!"
The doctor couldn't explain although he remembered about during his student days wherein Calcium was injected into the infected lung in order to calcify the affected part. But come to think of this, isn't it that eggshells are also consists of calcium?
Then the doctor asked the albularyo: "is most of your patients cured?"
Then the albularyo replied:
"Not all. Just like Jueteng, sometimes it is successful, sometimes not."

That simple conversation is somehow an example of bridge building between two different thoughts, and it requires understanding in order to get a grasp of a thought that is helpful in making a better cure. And although there are instances that both traditional and modern medical practises are sometimes not succeeding in recovering patients, does not mean And from it lies new steps towards combining the bests from both eastern and western medicine, of the folkish and of the scientific. Flavier somehow understood as well as recognises the need to learn from these so-called "quack doctors" who afforded to heal using herbs or massage that in 1992, during his term as Secretary of Health, a brochure of 10 medicinal plants (akapulko, bitter melon, garlic, guava, lagundi, niyog-niyogan, pansit-pansitan, sambong, tsaang-gubat, yerba buena) for common health problems was published and commercial production was pursued. And in 1997, with the TAMA (Traditional and Alternative Medicine Act) being passed, it provides a legitimizing boost to the alternative medicine movement in the Philippines.


Overcoming divisive challenges with unity

But in spite of these so-called "efforts" to unite in pursuit of improving healthcare, it does not lead to a better conclusion. For there are those who stubbornly thinking that "western medicine" as greater than the eastern one, if not equating its eastern equivalent to being fraudulent if not unsanitary; One example would be the idea of having a chemically-based cough medicine as superior to its rival that is based from a plant such as lagundi according to its advertisement, but, to think that two different schools are competing instead of uniting, did it address the issue on the mortality rate? Did it avert diseases? The stubbornness especially in big pharma has been a stumbling block in medical achievement that even themselves been rejecting new ones brought about by their own science just to keep profits going from their accustomed creations the way anti-flu drugs cannot be simply manufactured and distributed no matter how successful its results, for it competes with the usual anti-flu vaccine big pharma hath profited so much.

Also to think that regardless of those trying to stunt developments in medicine, or rather say health and wellness, it is indeniable that Science is constantly advancing forward, and mankind's cognizance of the objective world knows no limits. While today's medical and pharmacological workers trying to accumulate some experience in clinical treatment with integrative medicine, these have in turn engendered many fresh subjects for research and development, especially concerning medical theory and practise. After all, as what Mao Zedong said:

"The law of the unity of opposites is the fundamental law of the universe."

Sorry to use Mao's statement given its political nature (and hence controversial), but as reality makes opposites united, or in case of this topic, uniting both eastern and western methods, one may drew a number of better conclusions in treating diseases/ailments the way Kuo Pin end recovered through that manner. The utilisation of Chinese herbs and its western manufacturing methods is one example of how the latter recognises the wonders of the former and how to utilise such "wonders" to create a modern yet still rooted type of medicine meant to cure if not to avert symptoms of a disease. Even surgeons had to use acupuncture instead of anaesthesia in undertaking operations as a preference;
but, as much as possible, in making integrative medicine, surgery has to be a last resort for there are possible treatments a patient has to undergo other than surgery nor chemical-based conventional medicine. If it can be resolved through detoxification then why not? During the Cultural Revolution and its encouragement of fusing western and eastern modalities in medicine, Chinese doctors took one of Mao Zedong's philosophical passages, such as from his writing "On Contradiction” that somehow helped these doctors to look at the matter with a more overall view. And it says:

"It [materialist dialectics] holds that external causes are the condition of change and internal causes are the basis of change, and that external causes become operative through internal causes."

In the case of pneumonia, the bacteria or virus is the external cause of the illness, the condition under which a patient passes from health to illness; lowered resistance and disturbance of physiological functions are the internal reasons for illness, the basis for the change. The presence of certain bacteria or viruses may cause pneumonia in some but not in others. Relating this to practice, the practitioner may realized that in the past when confronted with a case of pneumonia people had been concerned mainly with finding which type of bacteria or virus caused it, and with controlling the inflammation of the lung; that practitioner had not given enough consideration to the patient's general health.
But in the course of a study regarding Chinese medicine and its integration to modern methods, one may found that most of the Chinese herbal remedies used for treating pneumonia in children are not of much importance for inhibiting or killing bacteria. But instead, it is more of building resistance for with those herbal concoctions, some of them stimulate the heart, while others regulate, tonify the functions of the spleen so as to build up body resistance and further improve the patient's general condition. Chinese traditional medical theory, therefore, views treatment in a more comprehensive way than merely through the use of antibiotics. And also to think that there are many Chinese herbal remedies with antibacterial properties that can combat infections very effectively with no side effects. They do not weaken the body or immune system and attempt to restore the balance of the entire organism unlike antibiotics which can also cause subsequent infections due to the hit on the immune system.

Interesting isn’t it? Focusing on strengthening what the body needs and not just simply reducing bacteria or virus inside the body; And despite numerous positive results yet there are those who rather criticize badly about eastern-oriented medicine in spite of having its “bests” being offered. Admittingly speaking, this writeup that deals with medicine, health, and wellness has something to do with facing the challenges yet there are those who chose to oppose mainly because of subjective criticisms and debates, rather than constructive discourses leading to a possible integration of both schools into something that is, holistic. Come to think that according to the World Health Organisation, between 35,000 and 70,000 plants for medicinal purposes globally at one time or another- and in India, wherein Ayurvedic, Siddha, and Unani medicine is widely known, at least 20,000 species of plants are found, 2,000 of which are efficacious in Ayurvedic formulations.


But remember: none are easy to make such product or undertaking a technique. Does the product require fresh or dried ingredients? Does it undergone fermentation? Does it be processed with or without heat? Will it be taken internal, topical, or even both? Will it be by hand or by machine? In the end, behind integrative medicine is a centuries-old tradition that undergoes modern procedures, it lives in a present but draws from centuries-old traditions whose healing relevance makes it still necessary to continue all for the future.
Or for reality’s sake, that continuity lies in the people’s demand for good health, and in using both eastern and western modalities in medicine, its fusion leads to a holistic form of healing and wellness affecting both the individual and the society.

source:
China Reconstructs, November 1972 issue
Creating New Chinese Medicine and Pharmacology, 1977