Thursday, 29 May 2014

Adieu! Sayonara! La Marina!

Adieu! Sayonara! La Marina!

Admittingly speaking, time seemed running out prior to making this work.

That, all after she had finished school, and had enjoyed summer by going to beach and enjoy the warm sun and the cool breeze, this time this writer's friend had to leave and return to the land of her birth. Obviously, it is quite saddening for a friend whom she had met two years ago, of seeing in a kitchen window, end gone shy yet afford to draw, then comes friendship and perhaps a good companion.

And the fact that she had inspired a person to write and draw, to express struggle and hope. His works may mimic those of the past, rather than of the present out of reading history books and seeing classical artwork; and the fact that She may not understand the works this person had made other than assisting in her homeworks few semesters ago, yet she even understand a few of this person's thought that is more of culture and politics and her's as parties and outgoing stuff.

But the good thing was, and is the interest in food.

And as she leave, it would take months for this person to recollect, if not inspire again to do his craft of both pen and the pencil in a barren sheet of paper turning into a series of tales and sketches. Yes, Marina may had not wore the red vest, the white skirt nor having the red beret in her head; few girls made this writer drew that kind of figure being stated, and yet, call it strange but she is according to the sketches, for she captured this person's attention and hence end in every artwork, much more that she was a good companion who really acts carefully than assumes.

So was this poem, made two months ago as he anticipate his leaving.

Two and half years, nineteen months and still counting
A fruitful friendship with you continues to grow
And now counting months, weeks, days till leaving
'Gain I alone, as you leave away

Beloved maiden, when you will return back
Will I wait long, hoping see you again
Will I wait long, till the winds make bells pealing
Hoping to see you, yearning to love you
Will I wait long, till my heart gone crying:
Beloved girl, O Marina, my love!

Like flowers growing you're the rose so special
Hoping it never wilt, forever growing
Same as the day when I met you, recalling
Until the day our blossoms rose astound

And as you leave, perhaps all's may forgotten
But deep inside never! Until the end!
The stars are shining and you whose colour is red
And with thine glow, means hope as I desire

Again, to Marina,
Adieu! Sayonara!

Wednesday, 28 May 2014

Reaffirming free expression and the right for information

Reaffirming free expression and the right for information

All after watching "Library Defence Force"
and its relation to the controversial Cybercrime law, FoI bill
and the people's willingness to defend internet freedom
and the right to information

Source: Genkinahito

Some fictions are based on actual statements, if not events and people, that made its makers inspired to create as an elaboration of those.

It was yesterday when this writer had watched a movie before bedtime, watching a movie seemed to help him sleepy especially after a midnight meal and some writing stuff. There were few DVDs to watch, most of them are comedy though, yet one of which seemed to be quite interesting.

Bought from a pirated DVD stall, Library Defence Force, or in Japanese, Tokoshan Sensō, is more than just a story about a booklover whom end joining in a paramilitary group out of her love for books and reading. Quite relating though isn't it? especially that this writer also loves books and even reminds of the days he had to pay fines during his college days out of reading books and exceeding in days prescribed, and even hiding books of controversial nature to prevent being caught. But that latter matter is a long and different story to discuss over.

And like any other Japanese movie, seems that producers turned the original comic book tale into a story just like "Death Note" or "Battle Royale", citing some of Japan's Movies often came from Manga comics and Anime. And like "Battle Royale", it had emphasised on the use arms and killing, but the difference lies a dystopic setting such as a law that imposes much restrictions in the flow of media, that includes book confiscation, burning, and paramilitary men trying to impose the so-called "Media Betterment Act" in bookstores and in websites. That somehow made Iku Lasahara, the book-loving protagonist, joined a paramilitary group, known as the Library Defense Force (LDF) to counter those whom initiate book confiscations, burning, and harassment of readers like her.

According to the story, LDF was made not just in respose to the Media Betterment Act and the councils formed in accordance to the passed law. But behind the story itself comes with actual statements concerning the right to inform, as according to Wikipedia:

The background of the plot is actually based on the Statement on Intellectual Freedom in Libraries that went into effect in Japan in 1954 (amended in 1979), and the terms are a little different from the Freedom of the Library Law that appears in Toshokan Sensō.
The simplified declaration:

It is the most important responsibility of libraries to offer collected materials and library facilities to the people who have the Right to Know as one of their fundamental human rights. In order to fulfill their mission, libraries shall recognize the following matters as their proper duties, and shall put them into practice.

1.) Libraries have freedom in collecting their materials.
2.) Libraries secure the freedom of offering their materials.
3.) Libraries guarantee the privacy of users.
4.) Libraries oppose any type of censorship categorically.

When the freedom of libraries is imperiled, we librarians will work together and devote ourselves to secure the freedom.

In Toshokan Sensō, the fourth chapter of the Freedom of Library Law states:

30.) Libraries have freedom in collecting their materials.
31.) Libraries secure the freedom of offering their materials.
32.) Libraries guarantee the privacy of users.
33.) Libraries oppose any type of improper censorship categorically.
34.) When the freedom of libraries is imperiled, we librarians will work together and devote ourselves to secure the freedom.

The details will be amended anytime according to the Media Betterment Act and its enforcement.

Quite fascinating though to have an actual law being used as a basis for the Manga. That, in response to the rapid book confiscations, burnings, and harassments made in the name of order, some local governments opposed to the Media Betterment Act created self-defense groups, and had been eventually being called as Library Defence Force.

Obviously, the movie, regardless of being fiction, also reminds of man's freedom of expression, and it's up to them whether they put into the test what they had read or leave it nothing but a reading matter limited to scholastic work. But to restrain the right to read, same as right to speech, press and other form of expression, seemed to be a mockery of freedoms being fought for: especially during the times when people had to protest in response to the controversial Cybercrime law after its passage. The said law, like the story's Media Betterment Act is one example of restricting man's desire to read and informed whether in a form of a book or this page itself.
That somehow it had been consistently opposed by many. Both the Media Betterment Act from the movie and the actual Cybercrime law shared the same intentions such as protecting the reader and the viewer. It happened that the former encompasses media in general, from books to the internet while Cybercrime law focused much in the internet with the controversial online libel much being featured. Both laws had insisted censorship, orders arrests against writers, shutting down sites, and with the former, burning down books with topics detrimental to social order such as novels related to murder. In fact, this writer expressed the same aspirations as the protagonist of the said movie that no one has to block free flow of ideas in a society that used to banner freedom and democracy. And Writers have their right to express thought, also knew how to regulate themselves and their work.

But unlike the movie that speaks about protecting every written work against censorship through a paramilitary unit of booklovers, bloggers, internet enthusiasts, stood altogether to counter possible actions made by the controversial law. Months ago came protests both online and at Supreme Court that resulted to a Temporary Restraining Order and hence continuously calling for its scrapping. Those whom taking to the extreme involves hacking government websites knowing that they are also supportive of the law that would arrest online writers, critics, for its hard hitting statements and relabeling it as cyberlibel as such.

However, last February 18, 2014, The Supreme Curt ruled the online libel provision of the act to be constitutional, although it struck down other provisions, including the ones that violated the provisions on double jeopardy. The petitioners planned to appeal the decision. Like the Media Betterment Act from the movie would say that this also means censorship. How wondering that the system, instead of passing the overdued "Freedom of Information act" rather chose to impose instead a bill that means restricting man's right to express through the use of today's paperless press like the internet. Speaking of "Freedom of Information act", it also shared same ideas as the fictional "freedom of the Libraries law", citing the people's right to gain information and the state's duty to give accurate information in the name of accountability and transparency. And Groups like Kabataan partylist, National Press Club, and the National Union of Journalists of the Philippines expressed support over FoI and opposition over Cybercrime law regardless of the state's intentions behind supporting the latter while treating FoI as a rhetoric. So was the movie itself this writer had watched, trying to speak about freedom and order according to the Media Betterment Act yet actually imposing censorship such as confiscating books and book burning.
Strange that this writer sees the outcome such as the actial Cybercrime law having the same procedure as the one from the story he had watched, and as said earlier, shutting down sites, even confiscating hardware and arresting those whom did "cyberlibel" out of exposing the truth coming from facts would be the possible scenario.

And if so, then expect more like those of Iku Kasahara willing to defend against censorship or Guy Fawkes and his explosive actions against a decadent, rotting system controlling the state. 

Monday, 26 May 2014

"Unleash the Panday Pira spirit within!"

"Unleash the Panday Pira spirit within!"

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It was centuries ago when a man from Pampanga who had been well known at the court of the Rajahnate of Maynilad. But instead of the Maharlika class he may had been from the artisan class because of his skill in his craft that had brought into the attention of the Rajah. His craft may consists of creating arms and armor despite the use of bamboo bellows, clay and wax casting, and not quite crude methods of bronze-and-ironmaking, but he was well known for his making of cannons and even farm implants, yet he was eventually known by the books and pictures featuring Filipino scientists and inventors. For he, known as Panday Pira or Pandapira had contributed to the development of domestic-oriented sciences, ranging from metallurgy, steelmaking, to the creation of native-made artillery. 
Mainstream Filipino science, through its books and pictures featuring well known Filipino scientists had recognize that kind of person, whom being depicted a lowly blacksmith-craftsman trying to serve the Rajahs with his craft, yet with his ideas in ironmaking be deemed an engineer or a man of science in today's standard. That even the Spanish occupiers, whom had after occupied the old Rajahnate had sought his cannons, and eventually ordered him to create, proven that the ancient Maynilad was also same as other asian countries of the ancient past having copies of artillery.

However, most of the artillery in which Panday Pira had afford to copy and improve came from Indonesian kingdoms and Malay sultanates. Known by many as Lantaka or Rentaka, the blacksmith had used Iron, Brass or Bronze, casted in lost-wax and clay method, and primarily used to defend the ramparts of Maynilad and on the ships called Parao. Ancient Filipinos such as those from Maynilad, Mamayan, and the sultanates of Maguindanao may attest how they had afford indiginous creation and improvement of things supposedly foreign, all brought from trade including the knowlege being gained from traders coming from both middle and far east. And also citing the Philippines' own natural resources, ancient Filipinos had afford to gather gold, iron, copper, in order to create indiginous copies of sort ranging from jewelry to Keris and Lantaka. Often substituting brass for bronze, and paying traders with Bulawan, known today as Piloncitos, and marked with a symbol that allegedly meant the ancient Majapahit empire.

For Panday Pira, he had simply chose to serve the Rajahnate and his people, doing his hands-on craft such as hammering, casting molten ore through lost-wax, and other exhausting work in the blacksmith's corner. Mainstream Filipino science had acknowledge him with emphasis of his cannon-making (and calling him as the 'first' Cannon-Maker) and yet few knew that he also forge the tools of peace such as farming implants. He may had been similar to the late Mikhail Kalashnikov of the 20th century wherein was known for his AK47 rifle, and yet he also created lawnmowers, whom he rather chose to make rather than the gun well known. 
Both geared for war and in peace, It takes years for a blacksmith to improve towards perfection the craft of forging metals, that, regardless of having it copied, least tries to make it improved, performing better than the ones being bought through trade if not a war trophy.

Personally, this writer had used Panday Pira's example of a nation that has to be forged time and again. Right was Rizal to say, although allegedly that the Nation has much doctors yet less of engineers to steer development in his homeland, that it has to be industrialized to be in par with Japan instead of contenting in cash crops for exports during his time. Fact that the nation had been awash with employees, semiemployed and even job seeking 'professionals', yet it is also the same nation that has no concrete, solid foundations of an idealized state such as a strong industry to provide these people decent employment and further cultivate knowledge and skill for genuine national development, most of which were became mere idealisms and rhetoric such as those of Claro M. Recto, Lorenzo Tañada, and others rallying behind Philippine Economic Protectionism. And the fact that it was years before when the Philippines had steel mills especially in Pasig area like the Philippine Blooming Mills, the system inclined so much with neoliberalism with the influx of cheap steel imports  that comes with a heavy price of bankruptcy on foundries that supposed to create, if not maintain foundations of an industrialized nation-state, while at the same time currying favor foreign mining companies to mine for minerals such as in Marinduque, Cebu, and Palawan for export. 
And Some people whom favor industrialization and domestic-based development would think and ask for themselves why on earth a nation has to mine iron, manganese, copper, or any other mineral if these are unjustly for export and not to be forged domestically? So is wondering that the education system, also supposed to be in pursuit of national development are rather geared to neoloberalist outlook, turning students into employees of bigger entities, observing "standards" to become just obedient servants with promises of higher pay than to cultivate creativity and innovation in their respective fields. Much more that Science and technology is even merely treated as a trade fair showcase than a means to steer further development and progress like those of the first world, with potential scientists are actually merely relegated to just research work for bigger entities, much more that the latter are based from other countries rather than from the Philippines itself.

Last time, this writer had heard news about meteorologists, seismologists, and vulcanologists rather working outside the Philippines citing the government agency's less budget in paying salaries especially weather forecasters. Actually, in a nation wherein storms come and go had been given much greater importance, yet the corrupted system whom controls the state fails to do so. In the fields of research and development, the system rather recognizes yet fails to give support in the needs of these potential scientists with the latter end working in developed countries like the United States, Japan, or in Europe.
Strange that the state afford to praise yet fails to give wholehearted support to these people. When was the time the state really recognize scientists and inventors, innovators and daring 'idealists' whose primary intention of their works was to cultivate development, enhance one's health, or improve security? Ideally, the money-awash 'Oligarchs' should give them a chance in their research and development, of innovation and improvement, yet obviously they chose to content in imported ones as if those are state of the art and hence much improved.
And if there is, then it would been possibly for the sake of impression that person is also philantrophist than seriously adhere in national development. And if there really amongst them whom seriously adheres to national development, then that person be given a sincere worthy of praise.

In fact, of all the Filipino scientists and inventors, why the much andtiquated Panday Pira? There's Fe del Mundo or even Felix Maramba as an examplar of Filipino science and technology, but the antiquated actions of Panday Pira least showed the Filipino back then as capable of producing its own especially those of firearms, that even the Spaniards also consider him for a cannon maker making guns for Intramuros and at the same time making farm implants. He had served the Rajah and later the Governor-General with privileges such as tribute excemption and even enough financial support in his craft, yet he rather stressed serving his fellowmen citing the improvement of the tools both geared for war and peace. And thus, it was more than just cough medicine, antifungal soap that is commonly seen in a trade fair.
Nowadays, few dare to be like Panday Pira, of being innovative in their respective fields of science and technology, of research and development; that even the rebels, sorry to mention them, had afford to make their own improvised command detonated explosive devices and grenade launchers. This writer may say mixed reactions such as a state trying hard or just hopeless to recognize and encourage scientists, engineers, innovators, craftsmen to advance national interest and to support them wholeheartedly as a national asset. Personal initiative, on the other hand cannot entirely resolve the issue of misrecognizing by the state.

To those whom willing to cultivate development and seriously adhere to national rebirth, let the Panday Pira spirit be unleashed again. He may've been dead for long, but actually he's alive and youthful to those whom seriously adhere in the field of science and its desire to put eir practise in pursuit of domestic-based development. Scientists, engineers, and even mechanics should be proud of being blacksmiths of the present, that despite long hours of hard labor, from research to the creation of their works, lies a good outcome in a nation that supposed to be in par with the developed.

Thank you.

Sunday, 25 May 2014

"Neither from Peking or Washington to dictate over Makati and Malabon!"

"Neither from Peking or Washington
to dictate over Makati and Malabon!"

At first, this writeup was made both in reponse to the latest events such as the agreement between the United States and the Philippines, the intrusion of China over the issue of Scarborough and Spratlys, and lastly, the World Economic Forum that became an object of protests days ago in Makati. This writeup, actually may mimic those of the last century's statements from those whom oppose unjust foreign intervention out of patriotic interests, be it may those of Peru's Victor Raúl, or favoring just international solidarity like those of Chou Enlai or Indonesia's Sœkarno. But these examples of these individuals rather banner neither of the dominating powers to impose policies and instead enouraging countries to fraternize in spirit of internationalism and at the same time constructing development in "one country" by its "own people" (sorry Stalin).

Despite emphasing much of development, economics, rather than purely politics as the reader possibly thinks of in this post, this writeup speaks how a nation whom is true to its supposed roots has to go deviant from the so-called norms being imposed by today's international order. Yes, the Philippines had been weak despite assuming strong by mainstream media. That despite having sprawling buildings and modern-day infrastructure, feudalism continues to dominate such as supporting corporate interest in the field of cash crops, of government bureaucrats emphasising their self-gratification tempered by their personality cults, and the system itself, despite bannering independence, non-alignment, and other progressive rhetoric continues to rely on bigger entities, such as the United States and its allied organizations whether to "support the economy" (by imposing neoliberal 'reforms') or "to counter China" (by relying on US troops and reducing domestic defence for mere internal security).

But other than the system whom tries to control the people with illusions, there are those whom acting on behalf of them by sugarcoating terms such as equating globalization with internationalism, of neoliberalism with development, or even austerity measures with reforms. These apologetics had abhor domestic-based development while favoring (un)just catering to foreign capital without solid economic foundations such as production.

When was the time globalization had to be synonymous with internationalism? Is globalization did really benefit developing countries in exchange for being subervient to the dictates of the so-called developed countries? How wonder why people nowadays had shelved or reduced their patriotic consciousness in favor of material benefits coming from those whose intention is to exploit brain and brawn of its subjects. The United States or China may had offered jobs through its companies, or investors willing to invest, but how about domestic ones willing to set genuine foundations of an independent, self-reliant economy? Economists may speak much of intense competition, but in reality, did they allow a nation to cripple its own domestic enterprise in favor of massive influx of imports and calling it "just" as investment?
After all, as what José Maria Sison said, that "the false claim that capitalism has triumphed over socialism, the imperialists are worried to death that the capitalist crisis of overproduction (accelerated by high technology, finance capitalism and neocolonialism) has far worsened and that social turmoil has rapidly spread since the disintegration of the revisionist ruling parties and regimes in Eastern Europe and the former Soviet Union." The United States had experienced recession, that the system had to bailout banks instead of supporting its people. Europe had faced protests such as Spain, France, and the heavily affected Hellas that eventually superseded with the events at Ukraine and Russia; and China, whom once presented as socialist had end succumbed to neoliberalism that made workers protest such as in Shanghai,while at the same time parroting 'nationalist sentiment' in its expansionism against its former tributaries regarding Spratlys and Scarborough Shoal.

Borrowing existing ideas for an indigenous purpose

It seemed strange nowadays that patriotism, or nationalism has been reduced into a masquerade, cosmetic sentiment, if not unjustly withered away in favor of globalization. Based from those whom had favoured the latter, patriotism is all bt a waste of time and hence be applied in an occasional events such as paying taxes, watching beauty contest, boxing and basketball matches. They would even label those whom applying modern yet foreign, rather than indigenous ideas as anathema to their perception of patriotism as all but chauvinism.

Yes, there are chauvinists such as those whom treating patriotism as all but a masquerade, acting like purists yet failing to materialise their "aspirations" and hence be subjected to countless criticism. But on the other hand, there are people who chose to be pragmatic, utilitarian, and likely to be understandable how they had to borrow ideas regardless of being foreign, of indigenise things, forging new tools based on existing foreign counterparts. That out of narrow mindedness most people whom cater closely to globalization and the illusion of 'global village' would say that patriotism is tantamount to just isolationism and chauvinism citing Juche Korea's, or Nazi Germany's example, that being patriotic means limited to things that are all but domestically made, but does it mean prohibiting the use of things foreign especially if the purpose is patriotic such as the use of fs foreign-made, modern gadgetry? Is modernity itself only applicable to the developed countries especially those of the imperialists and hence those whom using modern tools be subvervient to imperialism itself? How about those whom studying in imperialist-oriented schools and working in institutions yet having a dominant strain of patriotism in their aspirations?

From these people whom despite studying in institutions supposedly molded in unjust building of a 'globalized' society yet trying to create the contrary such as emphasising patriotism and nation building are those whom utilize existing thought to create another, if not using existing tools in forging a different creation. Basing on actual realities and people's needs, it is man's intention to use existing ideas to formulate in pursuit of advancement; most of which were indigenized ideas of the occident, if not the usual medicine or soap coming from a certain extract found in an underdeveloped region. And those whom willing to create a synthesis of oriental and occidental thought, if not making an adaptation of occidental thought into oriental setting showed creativity in pursuit of struggle for national and social existence.

Yes, If China's Mao Zedong had to use Marxism in organizing the peasants at Hunan, and at the same time using Monkey King as example and encouraging modern medicine pratitioners to study traditional chinese medicine at Yenan, the Philippines' very own Andres Bonifacio had to study the French Revolution at Tondo and at the same time reading Jose Rizal's works, and sought the repressive lives of an average Juan and Juana desperately wanting freedom against the knout of the guardia civil in Montalban or Balara. Both had least foreign and native influences fused to create an idea that applies on concrete condition and social reality.
And despite knowing that Orthodox Marxists would beg to disagree the use of People's war as they favor just strikes and urban insurrection, and butt-warming Liberals abhor violence as they insist peaceful lobbying and mere negotiations, it was creativity and looking at the real setting made what Mao Zedong and Andres Bonifacio happen to indigenise ideas deemed foreign if to apply fundamentally: one cannot rely just on urban-based strikes knowing that the enemy was eager to kill them, the latter cannot content in just making opinion-based writeups like those of La Solidaridad knowing that the people are yearning for blood against blood. After all, El Filibusterismo and Noli me Tangere reflects then social realities, and it had to realize the unfinished chapters by having blood as its ink and the sharpened bamboo spear as its pen.

Again, to those whom chose to join the "flow"
of misconscuousness

Yet still, despite all the countestatements and trying to understand why there are some who remained patriotic in their mindsets, having firm morals regardless of using modern things, people whom chose to join the flow called "materialism" has to abhor nationalism by telling those whom are patriotic should not use modern things since they are foreign, not knowing that every raw material, or the labor being used also came from the homeland itself. Yes, that your shoes, shirts, or the jeans had been manufactured at the export processing zones with labels coming from abroad such as Levis or Jag. They may not been called "Philippine made" since they aren't really made for domestic use but rather, for export and resold back and called as "Made in the USA." And these materialists of the capitalist kind? They care about the name of the label but not the one whom worked for long for that hell of a kind apparel.
Worse, they care less about their hardship, not to mention how much the wage been paid for them that is not enough to pay obligations nor buy essentials. These workers are willing to go on strike if possible after not given an adequate wage out of long hours of work for those apparel for those pesky materialists of today. Pesky in a sense that their lives and consciousness as all but work, earn, buy, consume till they die. Apathy at its finest, and if they afford to "care" about the issue, as all but a minor matter to think of in favor of how much that goddamn gadget to use on.

These people would had been promising enough if they have strong patriotic consciousness and willingness to contribute in setting foundations of a strong, self-reliant society. Juche Korea had much difficulty after its arduous march, even Cuba during its Special Period. But how about the Philippines with its resources sufficient as what this writer stated? Proper management and willingness to serve the people makes a society successful than to rely on outsider's investment. Of what is productivity if a nation has to rely on outsider's alms? People would say that anything is shifted from production to international capital, that neoliberalism is a key for progress not knowing that it is the same neoliberalism that imposes cheap labor, unjust flow of imports that cripple domestic produce while at the same time turning a supposed growing nation a farm for bigger interests both oligarch and foreign entities alike. Patriotism and self reliance doesn't require to be like those of Juche Korea or Cuba in its austerity measures. Actually, the Philippines, as said earlier has much resources than these two socialist countries western media had abhorred much and thus much encouraging to focus on production and at the same time accepting outside capital also in pursuit of genuine developement; but the important is that a nation needs stronger foundations such as industry, especially in the rural areas to cater potential professionals such as engineers, scientists, to mechanics and others, not just farmers in communal lands willing to man an enterprise with stronger emphasis of catering to the demands of the people.

And that idea is inspired by Recto and Lichauco, or even Amado Guerrero, if not those of Hamilton or John Maynard Keynes or even the Strasser bros. to speak of genuine, domestic-based development over unjust globalization as basis. Some, if not most nor even few people would understand as most are still indulged in what goes on such as a mindset got carried away by wholesale imports and say "patriots, nationalists doesn't deserve modern things and ideas for they're imports and they should content with the ancient." The withering away of history, heritage, reality from their mindsets paved way to distorted "truths" and a series of illusions contrary to what is actually seen and felt.

Neither from Peking nor Washington
to dictate over Makati and Malabon!

As time goes by, few people did their best to remain firm in Filipino heritage and at the same time trying to forge a good outcome to match with today's standards. The era of globalization and international capital made everyone, regardless of its citizenship to forget whom are they and instead becoming rootless, with a smattering of "identity" for cosmetic purposes such as waving the flag and singing the national anthem during a boxing match, a beauty pageant, or some sort of event that includes allegedly "patriotic" sentiment.

But, will they willing to express actively as a patriot? A few as this writer would say, most rather rely on a bigger entity whom they think of had offered much such as modern weaponries and the "effort" to construct such as after the second world war. But despite all these there's no real amity than of interest such as turning a nation that is supposed to be independent, self reliant, into independent but in paper and reliant to a bigger entity especially in regards to national defence or in the economy. Sorry to say this, but nationalism nowadays is all but a cosmetic tool being treated by the system, while seriously adhereing to neoliberalism and globalization in both idea and practise. And paying taxes be end an object of ridicule for scrupulous bureaucrats than the common good benefit in it. Therefore, is paying taxes an expression of nationalist interests? Um, nowadays possibly not really but a matter being insisted by the system with Potemkin roads presented to be sought by people that "they are doing their obligations" as a state.

After all, since this nation really deemed progressive by mainstream media, then how come the system disregard both industrialization and agrarian reform despite parroting or making a "practise of sorts" to compliment those terms. But years ago a government official called those terms as "passé" yet actually the same semifeudal semicolonial order whom is pretending to be independent and democratic is itself passé, trying to survive by remittances if not the service sector full of semiemployed contractuals. When was the time there was really national development and a chance of standing up on its own if most of the proposals were being scrapped off in favor of a floating peso, dependent on imports, and reliance on superpowers? The production of guns and ammunition, the small-scale creation of boats for the navy, and even the refurbishing of American-made armored vehicles may had least trying to create a showcase of self reliance in regards to national security, and yet with latest revisits to age-old military doctrines, with emphasis earlier and current agreements with the United States seemed to have these 'self reliant programs' all but a façade as the armed forces had to satisfy on secondhand equipment that yes, refurbished, while at the same time unveiling its mendicancy by offering territories, as military bases without knowing what kind of 'protection' will the United States would really offer to the Filipino fanboys desperate to counter China without rebuilding itself s a nation. Perhaps it will be just like Vietnam this writer guessed of if that's the case.
Ironically, the Philippines is a member of the non-aligned movement, but seeing such latest events and actions by the present mendicant order it had failed itself to act as non-aligned, nor not really acting as a SouthEast Asian nation but instead a trying hard member of the Organization of American States (with the latter some had end joining at the left-oriented MercoSur).

This writer, like most others, had seen how the Philippines presents itself as a developing nation yet fails to act seriously in it. Some would blame on the post-EDSA outcome not knowing that even in earlier eras the system had intentionally fail to advance people's aspirations for their interests, that self reliance as all but a façade, that patriotism is all but a cosmetic purpose while easily adhering to neoliberalism. The revolt of the poor continues to haunt over Malacanang, Batasan up to the sugar estates and plantations of Central Luzon, Negros and in Mindanao, while writers whom trying to act as successors of Recto and Tañada had to counter those whom favoring a mendicant foreign policy that includes bigger nations interfering in economic, political, and social affairs.
Yet most people care less about these and some rather chose to content in a mendicant status quo, seeing illusions of a nation awash with imports, cash, pseudo-development, with shallow, flag waving patriotism as the icing of the cake. Why does anyone had to rely on an interest-seeking, bigger bully to counter another while at the same time assuming as a nationalist like those of Rizal and Bonifacio? When will they stop relying on secondhand trash and imports and instead forging new ideas and things out of what they learned regardless of being foreign? Remember, Neither Peking, Tokyo, London or Washington has the right to dictate over those of Manila and Malabon. This Philippines had enough influences coming from every country, and even experienced using tools bought from planes and ships landedut or boarded in every port. But does not mean that the Philippines has to act helpless and contented in mere foreign aid than to stand up and be self reliant as old people used to say "change starts from the self." How ironic that everyone used to hear those words, that people should persevere, yet in a system such as what everyone sees is all but relying on a bigger superpower to counter another.

Sunday, 18 May 2014

"Three stars are enough"

"Three stars are enough"

The flag that has a variety of meanings.
(Source: Malacanang Museum and Library)

It's all but awkward to see nowadays how people chose to rally on the side of stars and stripes as if that hell of a kind flag will protect from bullets and nuclear bombs. Not knowing that it is also the same flag whom brought blood, rape and disenfranchisement for long years after their so-called "liberation". Much more that underneath their promises and cheers lies slander and bullshit most Filipinos care less about from these so-called "Yankees."

Basing much from comments coming from social media sites, most commentators had gone blind with the illusions and disregarding the realities regarding Philippine-American relations. One commentator had even admitted that he rather be a slave for Americans for the latter would provide him "better", another plead to president Obama for green cards and petitions for his family, others had even yearned for American help in Juan's struggle against corrupt officials, up to the extremenity of wanting the Philippines to become 51st of 52nd state, another star for the stars and stripes as expected.

However, few people, despite recognizing how America provided modern this and that to the Filipino houselhold, still cling to the same old flag that was first flown in 1898, citing its struggle as its reference and its unfinished revolution that has to be continue with. Hence, prefering three stars and a sun than the stars and stripes fanboys yearned so much.

"Three stars are enough", said the late poet Alexander Martin Remollino years ago in justifying Philippine independence in midst of continuous American intervention in socio-economic and military affairs with the latter heavily featured and supported by those whom as if the United States of America really guarantees their security "all for free."

But despite assuming that they guarantee security can also guarantee independence and the existence of the Philippines as a nation. Most people may care less about the nation's existence as an independent entity and instead thinking about their short term goal particularly those of yearning for doleouts a la Saigon during the Vietnam war or Olongapo prior to the expiration of the bases agreement. They care less about independence if not reducing the nation's existence into what the system usually presents of: be it the flag, or the feudal, peasant-like setting such as those being presented during President Obama's visit. The latter as if can guarantee through an agreement that includes free water and electricity, and the people? Uncritically supporting it as if it can provide jobs and a smattering of development.

And that same alibi was also had done decades before during the Vietnam war, as if South Vietnamese were likely to be saved by the Stars and Stripes against the red flag flying over Hanoi up to the DMZ and the Ho Chi Minh trail! But come to think of this, if the United States did guarantee security, how the the Philippines failed in securing its own, despite having decades-old plans still left on paper and in military journals? Will the Filipinos whom had loved the Americans so much also wilking to accept the fact that the nation whom assumes that can guarantee their security, whom afford jobs and support development really did their contribution? Or just safeuguarding their interest and if war comes be treated as a buffer zone?

Again, right was what the late Remollino said: "Three stars are enough."

Citing history as reference, he chose having three stars than fifty two with the former born out of a personal struggle while the latter out of its subjugation and calling it as manifest destiny. The Americans had freed its own from the British, that they imposed the Monroe doctrine, and trying to retain neutral, but subsequent leaders and congresses turned that United States into an intervener, a self-proclaimed "world police" trying to institutionalize a "Pax Americana" all over the world, an America that is right or wrong just to maintain its interest at the expense of the hardships of the people, be it the victims from Iraq or the taxpayers from the state of Minnesota.

"Three stars are enough", those stars Mr. Remollino stated isn't just Luzon, Visayas, and Mindanao. It also meant a nation that composed of upright, noble and united citizens (based from Kataastaasang, Kagalanggalang, Katipunan ng mga Anak ng Bayan) trying to defend and create its own path based from their cherished aspirations, and like the Americans during the American Revolution has to defend it, right or wrong in pursuit of freedom and justice for all. Andres Bonifacio had read the lives of American presidents knowing that with their experiences such as from Jefferson or Lincoln, comes a Filipino one who can seriously help his compatriots forging the redeemed Filipino state.

But again, people whom as if Uncle Sam really defend mang Juan's property rather sacrifice the cherished flag, of being upright, noble, and united citizens, just to become a "white man's burden" with the illusion of free if not affordable modern surplus, much worse if they really yearn for doleouts and foodstamps at the expense of the taxpayer (especially from the mainland) if they yearn to make the Philippines as a 51st or 52nd state. This writer, like others may knew that kind of fate knowing that the average John Doe who is paying taxes at the Internal Revenue Service complaining about where were their taxes go? And for sure he and others wanted those taxes be allocated to good roads, good education, not unjust wars and bullshit.
So should be the average Juan whom has to think critically about where were their taxes go: is it for good roads, education as what ideally think of? Or the actual one that is debt servicing and nowadays free water and electricity for these so-called visitors?

Perhaps it is undeniable that the Philippines couldn't break the clutches of neocolonialism because of the "conditioned" mind of the Filipino such as anything modern is made by Uncle Sam and his Benevolent pseudo-Paternalism guised as "friendship". They chose to be slandered if that's the case such as that picture above, calling them "googs", "Flips", even "Niggers" prior to be called as "Little brown Americans". That their "racial pride" is all but cosmetic such as waving the flag and a tanned skin than deeply rooted in mind and heart through studying history, culture, and identity; worse, history is even discouraged actually so that people can "move on" for chrissakes.

Right was the late Secretary Dulles to say about the United States has neither friends nor enemies but of interests to defend with. The Philippines had rich natural resources that are supposedly for the Filipino people. Having manganese, gold, silver, copper, rubber, sugarcane, anything that can feed and clothe millions of masses through developing its own. But the system chose to rely on unjust investments coming from scrupulous investors, swindlers in coat and tie if not offering its mountain, plain, beach to those whose intention is to export every ore, plant, raw material whilst the average juan has to buy expensively whose raw materials came from his own land. The system that controls the United States cares for its interests, and those whom represent that same system has to condition the minds of people of exceptionalism such as making unjust wars, occupations as just, as if Uncle Sam can offer modernity all for free that is, isn't, especially to nations treated as its tenants. It is right to hear about the contributions of the Americans in the history of the Philippine state from public works to bread toasters. They did modernise anything even the feudal structure into a semifeudal one thanks to that goddamn "democracy" being parroted by oligarchs and landlords willing to turn their fields into plantations for cash crops such as Sugarcane and Lumber for American, rather than Filipino households save for scraps for Panocha.

Three stars is enough. Right or wrong as what the Americans do, but this time in order to keep the independence spirit alive. It's up to the people whether they chose to become slaves contented in scraps and surpluses, of just waving the flag and cheer during a boxing match alone, than to be freemen who's intelligent enough to create alternatives in pursuit of forging a new Philippines.

After all, what's wrong in eating sweet potatoes and swamp cabbage instead of cans of sardines? Again, its up to the people. 

¡Independencia si! ¡Neocolonialismo no!
Pilipinas, Hasta la Muerte!
El Pueblo Armado Vencera!

Sunday, 11 May 2014

"That is why that person does not want to eat breakfast with you (onsunday)"

"That is why that person does not want 
to eat breakfast with you (on sunday)"

It was 6:00 in the morning that everybody has to wake up, brushing teeth, doing morning chores, all in order to go to mass at 7:30. At church, despite all the sleep hangovers, has to see and listen, respond on what the priest and the laity officiates in its so-called "feast", listening all the sermons, although sometimes uninteresting to most, and afterwards going home and one of them trying to go upstairs and trying to cope up with his rest.

But, someone else around trying to insist a person whom was trying to sleep to join in breakfast whether like it or not. Sometimes he tried not to by continually sleeping if not by going straight to the bathroom and defecate, thinking that the meal as all but venting shit all over by the owners of the house as if all after hearing mass, another sermon coming from these owners trying to repeat all the mistakes and shortcomings towards a person whom once did those kinds of shit. Yes, that person had did all the crap such as not waking up early or going outside, even getting money without permission, but notwadays tries to move on and restraining, keeping a mind clear from possible distress if not lessening an upcoming tremor around the house. 

Seeing all the food in the table. Whether it be scambled eggs, bacon, or even spring rolls, elders trying to insist to eat more, a much as possible more rice and viand to their own delight and calling it as a "balanced diet." And whilst eating their eyes pointed on and began asking questions that some are often irritable, if not annoying such as asking about "plans for the future" if not "why not stop sculpting and instead having a piano lesson", and a variety of questions as if making the meal livelier for them.

However, those annoying questions then becoming cuss and shit to vent over, and thus unlikely for a person to eat more on that goddamn breakfast. Much more that there's a time making a threat that made whom they vent rage about think madly deeply about his, not their wants, even the tablet being used is even discussed as well as the room whom being stayed for long! The tablet whom that person was using was for writing and not for mere social media, and why should had to stay down and mingle? Or let's just say see and hear sometimes the taunt?

The eggs had been finished though so was the rice and the viands being served earlier, but hearing most of the cuss and all the crap from the so-called owners of the house, makes one wondering what's the use of having a person be woke up at mass and afterwards forced to join breakfast only to hear anything directly against a person? Actually, seems that he had lost interest in eating breakfast and instead having fed with all the words normal people called as "sayings" or whatsoever just for these people afford to hurl. Afterwards that person had to stay on a corner looking at the dogs, chickens, followed by going back to the bedroom and fall asleep.

In fact, their words may've been right and justifiable in order to be upright. But does it include insisting their interest than the one whom had vented through? Playing the piano is good, but how about sculpting clay or even sketching? Obviously they don't support the latter as if nothing will grow upon that matter regardless of how being creative, or just because that person whom they vent this and that is musically inclined has to play the piano to their delight and calling it as "for own good"? Then perhaps rather play death metal than their interest whether they like it or not! Least that it involves a person's interest than someone else's whom resorting to use the house to justify power trippings. Being deviant somehow comes with a challenge, and those whom insist standards often oppose the unconventional. As if death metal is noise, sublime as disorder while cha-cha as music.

And that is why he doesn't like to eat breakfast with you during sunday just to hear cuss and shit. Obviously, that person is just being forced to than obliged. 

Friday, 9 May 2014

"To mingle with them"

"To mingle with them"

(Or all after encountering with these youth)

Try to interact with them to understand their pov different from what media usually showed in regards to them. photo 1920102_313075135509692_583943082809169786_n.jpg

It was weeks ago when this writer had mingle with these strange kind of people.

Mostly in rags, others sniffing solvent, and as if nothing to worry other than roaming policemen, these children were quite noisy, if not showy in bragging their pride as a hood regardless of being unkempt, unfed, or sleeping outside despite the sudden heat and cold.

Most of them aren't even shy and willing to take pictures of themselves in front of the camera. Like Ze Pequeño of the movie Cidade de Deus, these children like to show who are they, that they are famous no matter most people called them as a social refuse if not the scum of the earth and liable for problems directly attributed to these people such as drugs and pickpocketing.

Only to hear their replies stating that they are contented in scavenging, if not seeing some of them sniffing solvents and roaming around the streets of Manila like Recto, Legarda and R.Papa. Their happiness consists of their very own rap music, dance, and if having enough money for a computer in a nearby rental. In Mendiola, they are known to be as "Mendiola's finest" according to their elder whom they regarded as their "mother."

At first, this writer had mixed reactions about these children. Not because they are begging for alms, but they like to interact. Few of them knew this writer, and with a camera they eagerly wanted yours truly to take pictures of themselves and be sent via their friend's social media account. This writer had talked with them about their interests such as music and the way they wear. And most of them are like any other kid living in the shantytowns in the Philippines: taking interest in rap music, wearing jersey shorts or daisy dukes. 

Obviously, it is easier for most people, upon seeing them be easily described as "jejemons", "swaggers", "gangsters", "chicanos" and other recognizable Filipino subcultures, that these children had interest in singing rap if not dancing to the tune of hiphop and for some time wearing scantly for a heavily edited picture. Yes, these people may likely to be criticized more for their actions, that they are deemed "jejemons" for their appearances, but for sure few are willing to talk with them no matter how they are deemed as "refuse" or "scum" in the community.

But come to think of this, how come few are willing to talk with them regardless of the dangers? All after seeing them sniffing glue or whatsoever trying to escape from the reality, of seeing their teeth gone bad and swarthy out of sudden heat, end least trying to understand? Perhaps no matter who are they they had to be an object of concern and be encouraged to reform as persons. This writer had once met a rapper, a tattoo model, a social media personality, a once chorus singer all in social media sites, but how about in actual wherein people likely to look indifferent towards them regardless of having the same interest as what this writer had met and talked with in social media? They're much accurate being than what the media being depicted so much regarding certain genres children nowadays used to take part with (minus the solvent sniffing of course!) much more that their culture are a hodge podge of Tagalog rap music most people being scorned due to its lyrics, hip hop dancing that usually featured on shows like "Showtime", might as well social networking sites where they love to post heavily edited pictures with all their pride. Most people may describe them much as "Jejemons", "Jologs", or any other genre like to be described of other than the usual "Batang hamog" (solvent kids) if not "Taong Grasa" (greasy person) because of their swarthy appearances.
But despite all of their interests, especially those of loving to have themselves being taken pictures, this writer had found some few facts about their lives: few of them had go to school, one of them was once a contestant in a mayflower parade, their so-called "mother" of the gang had sisters well enough compared to her's whom out of her past trying to escape by wandering on the streets, and lastly, one of them had to protect her friend from others that end up having a wound on her head. The last one seemed to be courageous though to confront a rival group just because she was trying to protect her friend from being harassed.

And with a shot from this person's camera comes these people yearning for a series of pictures featuring themselves. The handsigns, getups, faces, anything is all but what had earlier being stated: a hodge-podge of genres they had taken interest with. 

Personally, these people are by products of rampant poverty and the culture that is prevailing. Living by scavenging if not escaping from the reality by sniffing solvent, these children had been reminding of what Lu Xun and his "eat people" statement,that they are eaten by the flow and thus resulting to these so-called "hopeless creatures" people usually downplaying them. This writer may had waited for these youngsters for June in order for them to go back to school unless they opted not to and become a wandering stowaway. But again, few people would dare to approach and to talk with them regardless of the fears upcoming, although most had afford to give a McDonalds soda float for nothing. 

Seems that it all reminds of an anime this writer had watched years ago whose group was called "Fratelli Neri", and theirs were dubbing themselves as "Mendiola's finest" after the place this writer usually go for taking pictures during a protest rally. The heavily dited pictures coming from their respective online accounts somehow provides "pride" regardless of seeing in actual as swarthy beings in need of care and attention. 

And underneath their escapist smiles lies an obvious problem creeping in their sanities. How wonder why some like them had resorted to sniffing glue or solvent for the sake of escaping from reality.

That's all for now,
Thank you.

Thursday, 8 May 2014

Of "Rabbit Pellets": or all after seeing Khmer Rouge medicine through pictures

Of "Rabbit Pellets": 
Or all after seeing Khmer Rouge medicine through pictures

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It was years ago when this writer had featured an earlier article about the Khmer Rouge and its attempt to create its own version of "Communism".

Mostly based from Khmer history and Cultural Revolution-era Maoism, the Khmer Rouge had failed in its own experiment (known to themselves as a "super great leap forward"), all regardless of its presentation such as irrigation complexes, rice paddies, anything brought by manpower and not quite disregarding modern machinery (except for trucks, few tractors, and some jeeps whose engines acting as motor pumps).

Much more that international mainstream media had depict those times as an era of genocide. Again, known for its killing fields, distrust of intellectuals and near-primitive conditions, the Khmer Rouge had dealt much with idealism with its overzealous adherents acting as overseers rather than in contact with reality as what early Maoist China and the Soviet Union did, making Cambodia an example of what Karl Marx had predicted: Barracks Communism.

However, on the other hand, seems that this writer had sought through its videos how the Khmer Rouge leaders, like Pol Pot and Ieng Sary afford to make a stage a la Fritz Lang in his Metropolis. All was but an order in seeing workers marching in lines towards their work, of women weaving cloth in long hours, or Children working as linesmen, a country that was turned into a work camp in pursuit of a utopia. 
That also obviously showed idealism without careful implementation or a just transition as what most Socialist countries did years before.

Personally, this writer had once thinked about writing about medicine in Cambodia during 1975 to 1979. Mainstream media had usually depict the Khmer Rouge as bloodthirsty murderers. Yes, murderers with a smattering of what they were fighting for. But, as this writer had sought pictures presented by the Khmer Rouge via its videos, seems that these people are trying to present a different picture and hence quite interesting to see how these people presenting an illusion through a stage, in a Potemkin country that was "Democratic Kampuchea".

Of bark, roots, leaves 
and paracetamol

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These pictures shown, mostly about how they manufacture medicine and how young practitioners trying to test their skill in the art of healing, comes with the fusion of old and new. Using barks, leaves, roots, of various herbs and medicinal plants the Khmer people had tried to imitate those of the Chinese in pursuit of self-reliance as if through crude tools and few ideas about healing they can surpass anything about medicine and development. How wonder do they have written treatises, pharmacopoeia to understand those plants and its healing power. But perhaps the important, according to theirs was just to create medicine more so as to substitute imported chemical ones like Paracetamol or Amoxicilin. As according to an article made by Laura Vilim:

"Pol Pot, the regime’s senior- most leader, mandated the use of home-made remedies rather than scientifically- tested medication at a meeting of top Khmer Rouge officials, saying: “We have to establish a research team to do research and conduct experiments on traditional drugs. Even though we do not have proper formulas, we can still produce them. We are practicing self-reliance in medicine.”"

So was Khieu Samphan, whom explicitly acknowledged the general experimental nature of medical treatment, even if he couched it in terms of progress rather than its actual failure:

"In the field of health and social affairs, many units have fulfilled or exceeded the plan of producing medicines for improving the people’s standard of living...Each cooperative has its medical center and its center of making medicines. By this way, we have given an impulse to all forces of the people’s mass to actively participate everywhere in making medicines. Although they are still at the handicraft stage, our medicines meet the needs of our people and their efficiency has unceasingly been improved. It is only by doing so that we can carry out our line of independence, sovereignty and self-reliance in the production of medicines as well as in all other fields."

However, despite emphasising traditional means, or as what Khieu Samphan stated as "handicrafts", the Khmer Rouge also has its share of modern ones, mostly coming from undestroyed apparatuses and hence reused by students whom least trying to learn the craft whom those really had practised "been purged" regardless of willingness to serve in the so-called "revolution."

Of Apothecary tools
and Laboratory apparatuses

It may be nice to hear about self-reliance as part of socio-economic policy, so as to see those kind of pictures featuring medicinal wonders and on how they turn barks, leaves, roots, flowers into pills through grinding into powder to molding by hand and be dubbed by most as "Rabbit Pellets" due to its appearance. But to use it to justify mere isolationism (and calling it as self reliance) seemed to be a mockery of their supposed thought such as cultivating internationalism as socialist and even patriotism itself as patriots. The production of medicines during those times, obviously seemed to be less emphasised on scientific resarch regardless of having those herbs, roots, barks as of medicinal value; or those whom mostly practising medicine were had less proper training and education like other socialist countries do. 
As a writer, socialist countries are meant to be progressive not just in economic, but also in scientific and cultural achievement. And countries like the former Soviet Union, then Maoist China, East Germany encouraged the former intelligentsia to continue research and education to support reconstruction efforts, but Cambodia did the opposite by using "political purity" as its basis, hence failing to create a united front (that had been realized during the Vietnamese "liberation" and the subsequent Heng Samrin regime). Old people, mainly consists of peasants were favored than those of the "New people", whom consists of city dwellers, hence the intelligentsia no matter some were willing to use their knowledge for the revolution just like other countries this writer had stated.

And that includes medical practitioners (surgeons, nurses, pharmacists, etc.).

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And through these screenshots, the so-called "medical achievements" of the Khmer Rouge tries to be at par with neighboring countries regardless of being in the "handicraft stage" (as what Khieu Samphan had stated). The use of old apothecary tools and traditional ideas were much being emphasised instead of modern methods regardless of some being existed and utilized as most were practically destroyed or left to rust. The black and white pictures above showed few of the laboratories left unscathed by war as most were into traditional, handicraft-like settings.

And presenting it as modern with people wearing lab garb.

An illusory success
And an actual failure

But regardless of their attempts for self reliance does not mean it guarantees the health and well being of Khmers as a nation. Disdain for the intelligentsia, no matter how some are willing to contribute in the revolutionary process and construction had failed Cambodia's experiment as a first "Communist state" (as in Communist, not really existing Socialist states like Soviet Union or China) trying to surpass even those of the socialist bloc. Enver Hoxha, a well known Stalinist had even criticized Pol Pot's policies as he said via “Zeri i Popoullit”:

"The Albanian diplomats have seen with their own eyes that the Cambodian people were treated inhumanly by the clique of Pol Pot and Yeng Sary. Pnom Penh was turned into a deserted city, empty of people, where food was difficult to secure even for the diplomats, where no doctors or even aspirins could be found."

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Or using this writer's view:

"Does these rabbit pills really can cure better than aspirin?"

Again, failure to retain, especially the progressive leaning professionals for construction and development, even those trying to bridge traditional and modern medicine comes with a failing result. The Khmer Rouge's disdain for city dwellers, that includes the proletarians did fail their "super great leap forward" regardless of how many bumper harvests they had for months. China's barefoot doctors were mostly medical practitioners whom having consistent study-practise routine and emphasis on sanitation. Cambodia, however tries to have a share of study-practise routine by using adolescents and even children using "ideological purity" as its emphasis to become professionals rather than years of education and training. How come disposable syringes had to be cleaned by just swiping as if it can prevent possible spread of viruses and bacteria? And why serums had to be stored in old soda bottles? The insufficient learning from so-called practitioners mocks those whom really bridge old ideas in healing and modern scientific methods. As according to Laura Vilim:

"Separate from the illnesses and deaths caused by the contents of the injections were those caused by the method with which injections were given. Without a steady supply of modern medical equipment, the injection serums were kept in old soda bottles that were not properly sterilized. Khmer Rouge medics used the same few syringes and blunt needles over and over again. Before an injection, nurses wiped the needle “clean” with their fingers; a needle was sometimes used for multiple injections before it was “disinfected” by the nurses’ fingers. As a result, the infection rate after injections reached 90% in some remote villages, and sick individuals became fearful of treatment by injection."

In other words, failure for further education and careful practise, particularly in a constructing socialist state brings out the contrary to their supposed goals like what Khieu Samphan or Pol Pot been stated. Worse, they were just copying without understanding, creating a distorted version of countries being used as examples of building Socialism from scratch. How wonder Cuba, Vietnam, China did excel in building socialism with well trained doctors offering good expertise in their profession by keeping the intellectuals willing to support the construction and development process as a socialist community. Doctors, Pharmacists had gave sufficient knowledge even those of herbal substances in order to be utilized. The Cambodian experience had at least tried but end far from what they had imitated upon.

And how wonder why some Cambodians chose to rally under the Vietnamese liberators and rebels like Heng Samrin for they really give aid after 1979. The "liberation" and the subsequent creation of the Peoples Republic of Kampuchea had little to start with, for there was no police, schools, books, post and telecommunications, no legal system and no commercial networks, whether state-owned or private. A few medical facilities would had been despite absence of hospitals and really few medical equipment and medicine. On the other hand, the Vietnamese "liberators" had brought enough "modern" medicine like Paracetamols and Aspirins, and even doctors coming from fraternal Socialist countries like Bulgaria, East Germany, and Cuba to train existing pratitioners thoroughly so as to directly administer cure to the suffering.

Personally, in seeing those kinds of pictures presented speaks of an illusion trying to put into practise. Again, inspired by the barefoot doctors, the Cambodians had tried to bridge the knowledge regarding the use of herbal medicine and modern methods in pursuit of self reliance. But citing the failures given lies the consequences. How wonder other once fraternal socialist states had afford to really practise scientific methods that also includes further research on traditional medicine, but with the pictures via somehow showed an example of a charade mimicking research and development involving the art of healing.

Nowadays, Cambodia tries to grow and thrive just like when the late Sihanouk been installed as its king, and It may take long years to grow and develop in all fields to be really in par with its neighbouring countries.

Source of pics:

Saturday, 3 May 2014

"A message this world press freedom day"

"A message this world press freedom day"

At first, cheers to all writers and media enthusiasts this world press freedom day.

"When it comes to emancipating our minds, using our heads, seeking truth from facts and uniting as one in looking to the future, the primary task is to emancipate our minds." These are the words the late Paramount leader of Red China Deng Xiaoping stated during the early days of his regime. The post-Mao China had opened itself to the world with the latter willing to invest and thus made a China that is known today. 

However, Deng Xiaoping's quote mirrors the call of every writer or any other media enthusiast to enlighten, broaden the mindsets of everyone in search for truth. "Seek truth from facts" as what he said, and regardless the growing number of deaths attributed to media-related killings, every writer has its duty to seek truth from the realities being sought; particularly those what the common man seen and willing to expose such as corruption within the bureaucracy or rampant state repression with writers and media enthusiasts end with their lives sacrificed at the altar of freedom. 

Last time, this writer had celebrated with his friends in the media industry in commemoration of world press freedom day. In fact, despite the music being played, people whom are celebrating are deeply concerned about the welfare of every press freedom fighter in its quest to seek truth from facts and to guard from harms way. Bills such as the "Freedom of Information act" had been subjected to countless debates in the legislature while people continue to oppose the controversial "Cybercrime law" that includes online libel.

But, the most bitterly remembering in the history of journalism was the infamous genocide made by the Ampatuans in Maguindanao last november 23, 2009 wherein 32 journalists being killed by those whose intention is to silence those who oppose their order. That incident, as well as others like the assasination of Dr. Gerry Ortega whom exposed the anomalies of the Palawan bureaucrats involving mining, isn't surprising for most to say that the so-called freest press in Asia such as the Philippines is also once of the countries dangerous for Journalists to practise its craft.

But does it mean everyone within the media profession, even those of freelance reporters had to get away with it in calling the Philippines dangerous to practise their craft? Of course no! To have a freest press, like free speech and right to assembly, includes the right to inform, the right to expose and oppose, and the duty to safeguard the truth from those wanting to distort.  And if the state fails to guarantee those rights is nothing but a fool who speaks yet fails to act. Some legislators had opposed FoI bill for they are scared of having full disclosure of government information, even their statement of assets and liabilities, and even transactions; these are even the same people who wanted to insist the so-called "Right to Reply act" and even "Cybercrime law" that can be abused so as to silence those who oppose their controversial, fiendish moves.

Anyways, despite all these concerns, everyone is greatly noticed that most writers, both in mainstream and in alternative media had made everyone awakened and vigilant in pursuit of seeking truth from facts. As recent controversial events continues to be watched and read by many, of having it exposed further through whistleblowers and variety of trails (be it paper, online, anything to be exposed), it is the duty of the press people, even those whom willing to expose and oppose has the duty to defend press freedom the way asserting its duty of seeking truth from facts.