Free Trade, Concessions, Foreign Controls, Exploitation
(and opposition) in the struggling society
Last time, This writer had read replies concerning people favoring free trade and foreign control over Filipino assets in the country. They tend to sound as if intellectuals or choosy individuals undermining the self-explanatory means of self-development in the name of foreign dependency under Globalization. These words somehow would say deregatory, and misunderstood, thinking that these people are also their fellow citizens taken a different path and carrying a different perspective:
Why should I buy inferior products and services just because they are made in your country? Failed logic.
Support MAID IN THE PHILIPPINES. Let's export more TSIMOYS, TSIMAYS and PUNASPWETS -- the highest achievement of uber NATIONALIST PROTECTIONISM.
free the market, remove protectionist policies, bring in competition to weaken the monopoly of these corrupt taipans!
Protectionism only PROTECTS the OLIGARCHS.
Well, these sentiments are from its deepest sense are narrow minded, thinking that only oligarchs are those supporting protectionism but how come these oligarchs are also dummies of bigger entities coming from a distant land? And willing to cater foreign interests especially in midst of a growing neoliberal tendency within a rotting semifeudal, semicolonial order? Isn't it aggraviating enough?
Downplaying domestic development in favor of free trade and foreign aquisition of assets? It simply meant nothing but justifying the nation reduced into a mere pastoral society with less approach to industry as well as being compelled to be dependent on rapid tariff-free influx of foreign goods and services. As expected, it further aggraviates the current system's exploitation of brain and brawn of masses to benefit those from the few.
How come? In a society where everything is reduced to a mere figment of promises and imagination, foreign investment meant a means to support underdeveloped and developing countries with means to keep its economy afloat, yes, with companies, institutions catered to these exploiters, it gives a temporary relied to the economy: with cheap prices of food, oil, commodities, whatsoever a merson may buy with and say "it's cheap."
However, on the other hand, it downplays the ones in the domestic field, that as these foreign companies having assets in a developing country, it meant bankruptcy for Filipino companies, layoffs and unemployment for its very own workers. It even fuels dependency as foreign aid meant doleouts and handouts to many, thus counterproductive to self-relaiant individuals and downplays ambitions of a growing, developed society.
The Philippines, for instance, is a predominantly agricultural country controlled by rich oligarchs, landlords, plutocrats and bandits, its backward semifeudal-semicolonial structure aggraviates further as neoliberal, free trade policies meant exploitation and control of resources by foreign interests and its domestic puppets, thus what else the Filipino carried about except their bodies themselves and their brawn? That their resources end up accomodated to foreign entities and individuals scampling for kickbacks and corrupt practices?
Well, in the early days of the Soviet Union, the New Economic Policy (NEP) of the 1920s meant a "good relief" to a growing society although it took a step backward through minimal foreign investment, limited markets, and regulated concessions in order to fund industrial and developmental projects with foreign exchange or technology requirements. The policy, contrary to those who lobby foreign concessions and free trade, meant prioritiziing domestic development despite limited foreign aid and using technology transfer as means of improving its very own industry from its existing tsarist-era ones as well as small and medium-scale industry. The NEP also recognized the peasantry further, as well as its skill in the countryside making them organized through education and modernization of agricultural equipment to support the existing ones despite paying food tax in lieu of the earlier acquisition of food during the "War Communism" policy of the Russian Civil War.
In Japan, during the Meiji era, the government decided that, while it should help private business to allocate resources and to plan, the public sector was best equipped to stimulate economic growth. The greatest role of government was to help provide the economic conditions in which business could flourish. In short, government was to be the guide and business the producer. And in order to generate further development, it involved massive education and land reform campaigns, as well as westernization whilst keeping its very own culture intact. Japan stressed much the value of patriotism despite its modernization campaign as it calls for the necessity for a militarily and economically strong Japan with nationalism in order to preserve independence.
But how about the Philippines? compared to Russia during those times, of China before 1949, this semifeudal, semicolonial society has economic zones, factory chimneys, call centeres and glass-clad buildings, but then the land was and is predominantly cultivated by carabao-driven ploughs, of farvested using sickles, scyths, and although threshed by a threshing machine (that require paying it as rent), There are still some who still relying to the mortar and pestle, winnowed by a shovel before selling it "cheap" to middlemen who sells it in an expensive price? In these circumstances why there is a need for "Foreign institutions" if there are Filipino-owned companies making pesticides, of those who knew how to make hand tractors aside from reparing them, or rather say willing to industrialize the Philippines? There are factories capable of doing this and that such as hand held tractors, kuligligs or jeepneys for transport, why a need for IMF-WB to intervene and pursue antipeople policies? Once, it tried to industrialize itself yet end up having limited approach whilst agreeing its contentment on influx of imports, remembering that under the administration of Ferdinand E. Marcos, much of it as a dictatorship, that the satellization of the economy deepened as economic policies gave primacy to expanding exports, especially labor-intensive manufactures that the West needed, removing restraints on foreign investments, stripping off the protection of domestic industries by cutting tariffs and non-tariff barriers and relying on foreign loans and the export of manpower to finance increasing trade deficits while keeping Macapagal's decontrol of foreign exchange transactions and devaluation of the peso.
Well, This writer didn't say that foreign aid shouldn't be accepted in the name of "Self Reliance", but as we noticed that the system had a group of lobbyists clamoring for free trade, less or no restrictions, and foreign control of companies and domestic assets, these pleas again meant overturning domestic owned companies, of advancing labor capacity and chances of a self-reliant society in favor of relying on to foreign aid and influx of imported goods. It also may as well putting the peasantry into bankruptcy as rapid influx of goods are entering, otherwise be end up as exploited by companies and individuals as Tano once living in a crampy, slave-like condition in exchange for a good-for-nothing wages; this, again as we see further aggraviates the current structure as we experienced today.
And if they kept on insisting their narrow-minded stupidity, can thy accomplish their task by shouting "Hey Peasant, Scientist, Student, Businessman, Disappear!" or "Patriot? You Communist! Scram!"? They may've succeed in changing constitutional provisions, making as many decrees as if like those of the shouting part same as making pleas urging foreign investors to come and control permanently a third world country. But then, despite these, there are still people whom are against with remained predominantly in the countryside; especially the 90% worker-peasant majority. And despite the absurd, superficial development made by increasing stocks, call centres, OFW remittances, everything foreign entities agreed upon, still 90% remained hungry, unemployed, earning less wage in midst of growing prices, all under near-slave condition, and perhaps, willing to become rebels to counter their policy of giving up the country for pieces of silver as what these pro-foreign interests supported with. And as expected, these neoliberals, and aggraviators of feudal power under the current order be overturned by those whom they wanted to disappear.
If they want to appease the peasants, workers, students, and the petit bourgeois who preferred domestic development, all ranging from giving modern-day equipment, cheap imported food, high-quality goods, good "wage" all too often in pursuit of lessening their hatred against those favoring globalization, might as well be answered:
"Thank you my good man, and know why are you here? To exploit resources and labor as much as possible? To levy a tax in kind? To put us on long working hours? You will have it, but don't say you did a lot of good things such as giving my children a scholarship, a cheap food and a good bonus, you may tell us what "good things" you can do today, otherwise, **** YOU!"
Haha! These people tend to influence the long oppressed with material needs in pursuit of giving up their struggles. CARPER, and its earlier agrarian reform progreams tried to entice people to join in its campaign, but it end up failed to do its work as the peasantry themselves knew its decisive stances, of insisting stock distribution over free distribution of arable land for agricultural purposes, same as the regional wage boards and collective bargaining agreements in giving workers good wage, of trying hard price controls and other similar institutions, then they complain about tardy people, squatters and dole-outs? It is theirs not the people who made them get contented to dole-outs than workfare, of distributing stocks than land to the peasants like those of Hacienda Luisita, of variety of proposals and possible incentives to cronies, oligarchs and foreign-supported companies than of Small and Medium Enterprises? Yes! They freely complain against the masses, against the left wingers and patriots all because of the growing clamor for pro-people development, what else they'll compain about? Oligarchs? Haha! Against Oligarchs yet favoring foreigners as we see! Yet Foreigners also favoring Oligarchs as we expect, that the Indonesians supported Pangilinan, Chinese over Tan, Sy, and the like. I remember one post made in response to the activation of large-scale mining in Surigao, this time with government support:
“The people affected by mining has long been asking the government to side with them. It is obvious, however, that government is quicker to respond to the interests of mining companies,”
If they continue insisting as ever, it may as well for the peasant and the worker to shout "debt freeze", "genuine agrarian reform", "increased wage, job security" or to a maximum degree, "workers control" to counter foreign concessions and free trade, why to insist free trade as they (pseudo-patriots and promoters og globalization) mock the poor, disposessed, and the sick? They cried "Communist", "Thieve", "Moocher" if they suspect those against with, yet they even not endure of tilling the soil or do manual labor and given poor wage as they insisted to the have not? They pose themselves as patriots or internationalists yet doing different from its very known essence (since internationalism also meant struggle in solidarity with their fellow workers, or masses in other countries on the basis of a common class interest and not of convenience). For obviously, they are mere people reducing patriotism to a mere national-costume wearing crap acting like a foreigner (I personally worried about it if these people insist so might as well it affects the culture. China, Japan, Korea tend to curb wholesale westernization by modernizing its culture by applying modern aesthetics whilst keeping traditional ones.) so Is this what they've wanted? So why to insist free trade, free markets, foreign control of assets, concessions to have these counterproductive shit put in people's mindsets? Might as well accept the fact that doleouts and slave labor are indeniable in this rotten system, worse as it further aggraviates with the policies trying hard economists wanted.