Thursday, September 13, 2007

More on Boracay to Greece

The following is an interesting email with regards to the Malou Fernandez controversy.

From: abaynsc@...
To: PerryDiaz@...
Sent: Tue, 11 Sep 2007 1:44 pm
Subject: On Boracay to Greece, OFW, HSW and Filipinos

Dear Perry,

I am an onlooker, an involved onlooker nevertheless, to all these passionate exchanges about our pride pricked and pruned, and the new found energy to exorcise the blundering witch(es).

That beastly chest beating should follow is perhaps as natural.Very Filipino, perhaps.

There is reason behind the spewing lava from the eription of a long suppressed
anger after chronic oppression, when occasion to vent this powerful pent up emotion
is given by a thoughtless, perhaps insensitive tremor that cracked a vulnerable, thin

The build up of such an enormous energy result from very real heat derived from deplorable, hateful occasions and situations that our OFW, HSW and all Filipinos, at one time or another find themselves. Filipinos are usually timid and stymied to even raise an eyebrow, much less complain about their wretched, often undeserved lot.

Perhaps, we ought to pause and ponder...

The reason the blow stings, is the fact that it hit a sensitive nerve of truth in many. That it came from an arrogant, unfeeling swing made it stinky sore.

The truth uncovered however need be noted, perhaps recognized, accepted and rectified.

At the risk of being misunderstood, perhaps it is time, we Filipinos own up to some of the painful truths that have occasioned others to treat us with little or no respect, many times harshly.

It angered me to no end when, Filipinos, their passport collected and held, were herded like cattle into a hall bare with no furnitures in Seoul, Korea, in transit to the homeland, while other nationals were led to a beautifully furnished waiting area with refreshment kiosk, shops and entertainment.

Was it outright discrimination? Or could it have been because, Filipinos littered the plane seats, hallway and bath rooms, unmindful or no courtesy to the next users? Or after repeated admonition "to remain seated until the plane has come to a complete stop and the seatbelt sign turned off," Filipinos would stand and open overhead bins to collect their belongings as soon as the plane approaches the terminal to the stewards/stewardesses' chagrin?

Or is it the sum total of the lack of respect for the law and for each other in our day to day living in our streets, our homes and our country, "ako muna, bahala kayo sa buhay ninyo" prevailing attitude as seen by foreigners in our own country and elsewhere?

Even as we find an occasion to come together for a good reason, like Gawad Kalinga, the new found potential of OFW might and power, we will step on one another to prove we are better than , and be on top of the other. How many "Global Filipino Organizations" are there?

Could it be possible we brought all these upon ourselves?

If I had my way, I will never take an airline that stops in Seoul, Korea on the way home. But shouldn't we perhaps seriously consider, taking a little bit more pride in ourselves, in our country? Show the world what we Filipinos are truly made of?

There is a need to change our flawed "culture". Let us rally to a good cause like GK, Focolare and the like.

It doesn't matter who gets the credit.

Let us rally to our beloved country's cause. Together, we can do it.

God Bless!

Boy Abay

The following is my reaction to this email.

Again, GK, Focalore and the like are all dots. The important thing is to connect the dots. If we do not connect the dots, all the good causes around us will not, cannot create a national impact. All the good things we do will not, cannot influence our collective mindset unless we connect the dots.

What will connet the dots? A good citizenship campaign is what will connect all the dots. GK, Focalore and the likes are all good citizenship activities. If we can bring to the public consciousness that these groups and activities are not merely socio civic activities but more as acts of good citiznehsip, it may be much easier to convince Filipinos be good citizens.

How can you relate "ako muna, bahala kayo sa buhay ninyo" to Gawad Kalinga? How can "to remain seated until the plane has come to a complete stop and the seatbelt sign turned off" be connected to OFCOuncil, Rock Ed, GILAS, HABITAT, medical missions, PBSP, Ayala Foundation, etc? It's all about citizenship.

A good citizenshp campaign is part of the solution. We need a campaign that will capture the imagiantion of each every Filipino. The campaign will only need a few dedicated individuals who sincerely believe that citizenship is part of the solution. It does not have to become a movement that will take members. All it needs is a lot of imagination and creativity to inpire Filipinos to be better citizens.

Monday, September 10, 2007


Just saw on TV the GO NEGOSYO awarding of Manila entrepenuers. One of the awardees is Carlos Celdran for his walking tours. Congratulations Mr. Celdran.

Other awardees include Mr. Gerry Chua for his hopia busniess, Ms. Alejandra Clemente of Rajah Tours, Ms. Alice Guerrero of Tesoros, Robert Kuan of Chow King, Ms. Willen Mai of Masuko, Mr. Jose Reyes of Arisctocrat, Dra. Elena Benitez of Philippine Women's University. Posthomus awards for Dr. Nicanor Reyes of FEU and Ms. Betty Go Belmonte of Philippine Star.

Being an entrepenuer myself, and I do business with one of the awardees, entrepenuership is very close to my heart but it is not really part of my advocacy. Not yet. Our collective mindset is not geared towards entrepenuership. Our
collective mindset is more about a future working oversees.

GO NEGOSYO is a government program that promotes entrepenuership. Their website is exactly tha of the DTI. I wonder why. Being a government initiated program, I doubt if people will really take this campaign seriously.

As we all know, entrepenuerhsip is not just about capital and profit. It is also about vision, passion and commitment. But it doesn't end there. It includes trade secrets, contacts, marketing savvy, product development, cash flow, technology and commuication. More importantly, entrepenuership is about calculated risks, honesty, integrity and hard work. Entrepenuership therefore is about values, good values, that is.

The world of business is a dog eats dog world. To survive, you have to be ruthless. You must be cunning. You must protect your trade secret with your life or else gagayahin ka. You must spy on your competition. Sulutan is the order of the day. You must know how to barat your suppliers to get the best deal, no matter what. You cheat on your taxes to increase profit. You do under the table transactions to get juicy deals. You underpay your employees and over work them to be able to buy a new car. You may even hire children who are very willing to work for a few bucks. You don't improve the working conditions as this will add to your overhead. That is the reality of the world of business. It sucks.

What GO NEGOSYO attempts to do is to inspire people to go into business. People are invited to share their success stories. Most of the time, we hear the same thing from their speakers; hard work, motivation, inspiration, perserverance, dedication, commitment, etc. But once people engage in business reality sinks in.

Registering a business name is a walk in the park. It is getting a mayor's permit is where the nightmare begins. Fees are subjective depending on the type of business you are putting up. A fixer will make life much easier. The rest of the nightmare will follow. Saints who succeeded in business are more of the exception than the rule. Palakasan, sipsipan, siraan, sulutan may bring better deals. Most of the reported corruptions we read in newspaper is about doing business with government.

Because of this reality, I won't advocate for entrepenuership. Not yet. What we need is a change in values, a change in attitude, a change in mindset before we encourage people to go into business. Let us first be good citizens before we can become good entrepenuers.

The plot thickens

Akala ko game over na. Yung pala nagsisimula pa lang ang boksing.

The Malu Fernandez controversy just won't fade away. Now there is a full blast internet campaign to bring Manila Standard Today down on its knees. Apparently, people are not happy at how the newspaper handled the issue so now there is a call to boycott the newspaper. Again, just like what I stated in my previous post, I cannot relate. I don't read this newspaper. Never got hold of a hard copy and hardly read them online. I read Bong Austero, the blogger, not the columnist. I am not an OFW. I am not a Manila Standard reader. So how can I be part of this boycott campaign? Or should I be?

Do I have to put that button on this blog to be kasali? Nah. Hindi ko na isasawsaw ang blog na ito.

Nakalkal pati ang column ni De Quiros na hindi naman gumawa ng ganun kalaking controversy noon. Bakit kaya hindi pinagtulung tulungan noon si De Quiros?

Ayon kay celdran, si Malu Fernandez ay isang matapobre. Yun na yun.

Ewan ko kung ano ang kahihinatnan ng boycott campaign na ito. Feeling ko lang, may mas mga importante at mahalagang isyu na dapat nating pagkaisahan at pagtulungtulungan kesa sa isyung ito. Syempre, wala din akong karapatan para sabihing hwag nang ituloy ang kampanyang ito. So, sundan na lang ang susunod na kabanata.