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Centuries ago, rising empires fought for control over the Philippine islands. The Philippines transitioned from one colonizer to another. History was made, heroes were born and the blood of patriots was spilled in fighting the invaders. Now, more than half a century since, the Philippines is now a young, independent nation. Yet the sovereignty we enjoy today is an imperfect one. The Filipino people are still struggling to survive in the new world amidst a fluctuating economy, inadequate leadership, and worst of all, the start of violent conflicts between our fellow brothers in blood. Despite the growing power of the Peso, living conditions for the masses are more or less the same fifty years ago. Some say even worse. The gap between the rich and the poor are wider than ever before. The Philippines is in a crisis.

The nation is adrift. The Filipinos are divided and the integrity of our institutions has been torn to shreds. Rampant graft and corruption are becoming commonplace. Justice has been fading away. Huge fiscal deficits, rising debts, skyrocketing unemployment and inflation define our economy while widespread poverty and crime define our once honorable society. Life is difficult for the average Filipino. Our professionals and skilled workers are unable to find any opportunities in their own country and are forced to seek better options abroad. The domestic market is threatened by piracy and smuggling. Many of our leaders, both regional and national, have shown utter disregard for the law and have turned to their own selfish pursuits. The Filipinos have become disenchanted to such a degree that they are unable to visualize and embrace a sense of hope for the future, sinking into a state of hopelessness.

Yet hope is not yet lost for us. As we have once rallied to fight, bleed, and die for our country against the Spaniards three centuries ago and again against the Americans and Japanese, the Filipino people can again rally to rebuild and reform the country.

The world is changing rapidly, the Philippines with it. New ideas and advancements in technology are spreading like wildfire throughout the world. The country is in need of strong, decisive Filipinos to lead the country into being a competitive power. However, our present leadership is, to say the least, inadequate. The state has become weak under the current structure of government. The interests of the Filipino masses have not been appropriately articulated nor enforced. The government is weak and derisory since the very first administration. Throughout history, government administrations have been continuously faced with various struggles such as the aftermath of the struggle for national liberation, lack of consolidation of political units, government policies dictated by stronger, imperialist states, etc. The state is doomed to be weak under the current structure of government where the Filipino masses are alienated. There is a need to modify and adjust our very democracy to better suit the needs of all, as opposed to the democracy for the elitists. The government should work together with the Filipino people work for a future with a sense of national purpose. The goals of the government must be to liberate the Filipinos from iniquitous relations with external powers, provide and enhance economic opportunities for the deprived and political empowerment for the powerless. The Filipino government should lead the Filipinos away from the conventional practices of the past and pioneer new lines of thought, to be prepared to discard inherited institutions that were ineffective to begin with, if these imperil a better quality of living for the majority of the people. As I have discussed what a government should be, I proceed to what a government should do.

The growth and expansion of our economy was very irresponsible as we have still failed to tackle the issue of debt. Perhaps our single largest economic problem would be our crushing debt. Even worse is that most of our loans are not utilized properly to fulfill the needs of the people or for the full improvement of the industry. The government should assert the right of our country to uphold its responsibility to our people and negotiate a cessation on our debt and to ensure, by strict surveillance, that proceeds of future loans are not diverted into anywhere else but the national treasury.

Another problem I must urgently address is our industry and our agriculture. The Philippine industry is ersatz, a joke. The state is yet to have an Industrial Revolution of its own. We are too heavily dependent on foreign investors that whatever relations we have with domestic industries have become negligible. Foreign industries have taken advantage of our poor technological capabilities. They have insisted on buying only our raw materials while flooding our markets with their products that compete with our own. Ironically, their own products were made mostly from our raw materials. The government is lacking a strong Industrialization Strategy. If it was not for our promising agriculture, we would probably be a neo-colony in all but name. The government should transfer some of their attention from agriculture to improving our industry by shifting away from the strategy of export-orientation to the strategy of developing and manufacturing products and services best suited to the specific needs of the state. It is the Philippine government's responsibility to use their enormous procurement authority to upgrade the quality of local products and services to well within international standards and to pressure local suppliers and manufacturers to improve their technologies.

(I have fallen ill with an illness called the "Writer's Block". I apologize for having to end this entry with this...)