Essay About Philippines Politics


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Philippine Political System: How can it be changed by the youth?

Philippine political system has been tagged to be corrupt and hopeless. Politics is unhealthy and rights are abused. Social justice seems to be a far away dream. And the observance of the law seems ruthless.

The youth is said to be the catalyst of change. It is said that the youth is the hope of changing and bringing an ideal system. But how exactly can the youth change the present system when he is sorrounded by a corrupt system? How can he do it when not all can study and get themselves involved in worthy activities? How can he do his advocacies when his freedom are supressed?How can the youth fight the pain of a corrupt system and maintain his idealism for an ideal system?

Posted by: Arnel D. Mateo
Date posted: Jun 04,2009
Replied by: prince | Date replied: Nov 22,2011

Tama, kung ang nakaupo ngayon ay hindi magbabago ang mga kabataan ay hindi rin magbabago

Replied by: orlando baren | Date replied: Oct 19,2011

i hope that the your will be able to lift up and bring a decency to the corrupt government of our country... youth are the catalyst of change and the future leaders of our country.....

Replied by: ninja | Date replied: Mar 01,2011

agree!. approve!

Replied by: Joseph Martin P. Buray | Date replied: Jan 11,2011

progress is impossible without change, and those who cannot change themselves cannot change anything.

for the change starts within our own self!!!

Replied by: jomz | Date replied: Aug 25,2010

Ang kabataang Pilipino ay pinag mamalaki ang pagiging Pilipino at doon nagiging malakas tayo. Bagamat, paano natin ipagmamalaki na tayo ay pilipino sa kulturang kinagisnan natin, sa mga obrang gawa mula sa atin, sa kulay natin, sa pagiging maka Diyos natin sa Dugo at sa Puso, kung tayo mismo ay napapalibutan at nakatali sa paanan ng "PULITIKA"? Paano magiging PAG-ASA ng bukas ang mga KABATAAN kung ang mga matatanda at mga PULITIKO ay nagpapakita ng kasakiman sa [mga kabataan] sariling bansa?

Replied by: jomar | Date replied: Aug 25,2010

Replied by: chriscaro | Date replied: Jun 10,2010

i don't think it is necessary to change the culture of my beloved nation. what s necessary is to change the system within itself. The former Minister of Education ONOFRE D CURPOZ says in one of his journal we filipino's do develop a what he called "HISTORICAL AMNESIA" we are already in the take off stage on the late 1950's we are much richer than korea, and other asean country. but becuase of our present system Presidential Form we are now in this hopeless situation. political scientist try to pursue a much better system we oppose without any evidence of on how this system works.... THE PARLIAMENTARY SYSTEM IS MUCH MORE SUITED TO THE PHILIPPINE SYSTEM.

Replied by: Edison Ong | Date replied: May 18,2010

I agreed with Mr. Friedrich saying that change has happened in much difficult circumstances. We should not expect worst possible outcome, instead taking the risks of every decisions that will be doing, but of course comes with intelligent and vibrant moves. Getting real reforms are very challenging, there must be an escape from TRADITIONAL political system which we are considered as our comport zone unless until it is good to live in the world of imagination. Real reforms will only be possible if we have an escape from this old political shell. If we are aiming for a real and attainable change, timing is very important, and I could say that this is the right time to think what we want to be, where we want to be as a NATION. Nothing will happen or change is impossible if we are afraid to get involve.

As a YOUTH, we are warrior, we are in the middle of battlefield, a battle of corruption, injustices, inequality, and business monopolize system we must find the right armor and indestructible shield to succeed. We must wake up and not live by the dreams, prove not only in our race that we can make a difference, it is very TRUE that we are the catalyst of change, and for me I am very aggressive in making this dream into reality.

Replied by: catherine | Date replied: May 14,2010

in my opinion, changing the political system alone would not solve the problem. maybe, we need to look at ourselves, and reassess our values as a people. Like one social scientist said, what the Philippines need is to "remoralize our demoralized society".

the youth has a great role to play, and has to do its part. why? because the future belongs to them.

Replied by: Manuel C. Flores | Date replied: Apr 27,2010

It is a sad fact that the Philippines, although it has abundance in natural and human resources that could have placed abreast with the world's richest nations have remained cellar dweller as among the poorest. The reason is another sad fact, political career in the country is a very lucrative business that engrossed a lot of greedy wolves, and they will spend a fortune, pour and mobilized out his Gs (gold, guns & goons)just to grab a government post, then recover his expenses with gargantuan profits out of public coffers and money spinning deals once elected. The end result, true welfare of the nation and people for real leaps of progress does not happen.does not happen, instead, the deplorable wealth these politicians amassed in just a few years becomes a common scenario.

Replied by: Nova | Date replied: Apr 23,2010

"cultural transformation happens when one person at a time believes that it can happen and starts the change within himself."

Replied by: ma lilia julita pedellume | Date replied: Aug 04,2009

i do believe that youth are the catalyst of change. today's youth will be tomoorrows leader. i am a youth leadership student and a youth myself.
this issue on how can filipino youth do the changes if they are surrounded by corrupt system catched my attention.
As young filipina, i do believe that youth can still be a able to make changes even he was not able to have higher education. As the saying says..If there's a will there's a way..
But let me share what is in my mind about what is happening in the Philippines.
In my own view What is happening in the country is not just a result of corrupt system but also of what people are doing.
Let me cite some reasons:
1. The crimes and addiction rooted not in the corupt system, as i view it, it rooted from families. Parents should be responsible of their children. Parents should be there to be the light to guide there children, the should be the partners of teachers in nurturing the young ones to be good citizens.
2. When it comes to employment problems both people and government should be responsible about it.
People who are blaming the government alone are pointing the government with a finger without knowing that four fingers are pointing themselves telling them that blame also belong to them.
Young people can help by avoiding this attitude,and do there share in community building by there own special way. Change can not be done immediately it is a step by step process which should start in everyone self.

Replied by: ISAGANI B ABRIL | Date replied: Aug 04,2009

philipines is run to be hopeless because of the pilitical system is being administer is inefficient and people arround us are also influence with the corrupt administration how can it change to the youth if the leader also lie his administration,,,that why philippines is tagged to be corrupt,,,,

Replied by: jochebed dela cruz | Date replied: Jul 04,2009

This is Obed Dela Cruz again.

Change is what we need Mr. John. Change is needed to make our government more accountable. Philippines must wake from this nightmare and rise from the mud.

Replied by: John | Date replied: Jun 21,2009

It is high time to stop the CHANGE and start making our government more accountable.

Replied by: obed dela cruz | Date replied: Jun 02,2009

The youth can change this Philippine society of they will know what they can do. If they will only know the law and their rights. Also if they will realize how strong they are and how weak the problem is. THERE'S HOPE!

Replied by: hernandoguanlao | Date replied: Dec 31,2008

one of the ten causes of failures is "blaming others" thus to succeed we do our best effort always.

Replied by: eduardo T, Cartel | Date replied: Aug 02,2008

As long as these traditional politicians reigns in power. As long as corruption is permitted by the top leadership and the political dynasty system continue to dominate, this country will continue to be buried under the ground. A country in misery, a country without hope, a country without future.

If the people will decide and chooses a leaders which are real christian (eg. BROD EDDIE C. VILLANUEVA), this country will have hope.

In a republican society like the Philippines, governance is always at the hands of the people.

Therefore, change must start within us. Unless we will not change our attitude, this country will remain to be at the hands of opportunists, politician with self vested interests and robbers.

Replied by: abraham garcia | Date replied: Mar 06,2008

If you are part of the higher social class, With the source that you have being part of the higher class, you are capable of sharing your knowledge to others and educating others about the pros and cons of our government. You also have the resources that would help you in reaching out to other social classes.

Replied by: Cathy Huan | Date replied: Oct 30,2007

Yes, youth are the catalyst for change because they bring in fresh ideas with an idealistic point of view for a better tomorrow. I would say that our youth are the goldmine of our country. That is why I firmly believe in the power of education and the transforming power of faith in Christ.
The quality of our future leaders lies greatly in the way we mould our youth while they are still in their schooling years.
I just recently watched a movie with my husband entitled "Lust and Caution", where you could see how the idealism of the youth to fight for their country's freedom against all odds. But great passion should be properly guided so that they will be channelled accordingly and be more effective.
Truly, a young life who is totally dedicated and focus on serving his or her country will eventually make a difference now and in the future regardless of the challenges of our Philippine Political System.
Let's pray and be always prepared on how we can be of help to our Philippines educational system because it is the only hope to our current political system.

Replied by: Arnel D. Mateo | Date replied: May 14,2007

You made good points.

I am ideally hoping that our small steps could remedy the cancer of corruption in our society, and could establish equality of rights among our people.

I hope that all the youth could be given the chance to engage in worthy activities to serve as a catalyst for change.

Friedrich Naumann says... | Date replied: May 09,2007

Don't be too pessimistic - change has happened in much more difficult circumstances. It does require people with idealism coupled with a sense of common sense and practicality. Idealism is a personal decision and attitude. If you want to maintain it, you must nurture it. Sometimes it is a matter of changing your perception and focusing on the changes for good that are happening. You cited: "Philippine political system has been tagged to be corrupt ...." In a recent survey by the Political & Economic Risk Consultancy (PERC) the Philippines was perceived by expatriates as to be the most corrupt in Asia. However, the Asia Foundation conducted a survey of Filipino business managers around the Philippines in 2006. The results showed that they have experienced a decrease in the taking of bribes for some transactions. Read the results here:

The India Times also reported that the PERC "had not noted a worsening in the actual situation in the Philippines despite its deteriorating score." Read it here:

Several vote-oriented Website have also been set up to keep people informed about the candidates for the 2007 elections. Among them is headed by college students and young professionals. Read more:

These are just a few examples, but there are many more. You must just be willing to change. As Carlos Celdran, freelance Manila walking tour guide, says of himself: "Just a regular fellow trying to change the way you see the city of Manila one step at a time."
In that lies an important insight, one also expressed by Vaclav Havel, once a lone dissident in communist chzechoslovakia, later its first democratic president: Change is achieved in small steps, by people who refuse to accept lies and attempt to live differently, even if they can only do so in a limited way. But many such limited steps can and will add up - until it reaches a critical mass, when big changes can occur quite rapidly, like the fall of the Berlin wall.

A self-confessed “man of many flaws and contradictions,” the Philippines’ new president-elect, Rodrigo Duterte, now has the tough job of uniting the country. However, the tougher job will be convincing everyone that the Philippines is not regressing and his policies are indeed fit for a modern democracy.

The former mayor of Davao City used his first press conference since capturing almost 40 percent of the votes in the May 9 general elections to set the record straight about his policy on killing criminals.

“If you resist, show violent resistance, my order to police [will be] to shoot-to-kill,” he told reporters in Davao.

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The 71-year-old has also vowed to bring back the death penalty, a policy that was abolished a decade ago.

Duterte’s controversial plan to use extrajudicial killings as a way to end crime within six months of his presidency earned him a lot of attention and votes. While the rest of the world cringed at his tough-talking rhetoric and foul comments about women during the campaign, many Filipinos cheered. It is troubling that such a blatant disregard for human rights received overwhelming support from the Philippine public.

While the Philippines is Southeast Asia’s oldest democracy, it has gained a reputation as one that has been captured by political dynasties. Political scientist Benedict Anderson called it a “cacique democracy,” a country where power is passed from one oligarch to the next. Running for public office is indeed a family affair in the Philippines. Prominent surnames like Aquino, Roxas, and Marcos are linked to an influential elite with traditional connections to wealth and power.

Known to Filipinos as Rody, Duterte led a populist campaign that appealed to a rising anti-establishment sentiment fed up with the usual suspects ruling the country. His strong family roots to Cebu and Mindanao in the south set him apart from past presidents. But if his resume is anything to go by, it seems Duterte is all for the status quo of powerful family dynasties. While promoting himself as a challenger to the country’s poorly performing political elite, he had already built his own tight clique in Mindanao’s capital.

Duterte’s consolidation of power in Davao City dates back to 1988, when he first served as mayor for three consecutive terms before being forced out of office after reaching the constitutional limit in 1998. After doing a brief stint representing Davao City in the House of Representatives, Duterte ran for the city’s top post for a fourth time in 2001 and was re-elected consecutively until hitting the three-term limit again in 2010. His reluctance to see political change led him to run as vice mayor to his daughter Sara Duterte-Carpio, only to win back the title of mayor himself in 2013.

The familiarity of the Duterte brand and its hardline approach, which has been credited for turning Davao City from a crime hotspot into one of the Philippines’ safest metropolises, is certainly one of the reasons he has maintained his popularity for almost three decades. It is no surprise that Duterte’s children also cleaned up in the elections. With his daughter back in the mayor’s seat and son Paolo Duterte winning the vice mayoral post, the Duterte dynasty in Davao City will live on. Duterte has successfully sold his family brand to the rest of the country. It seems Filipinos want a change, at whatever the cost.

Although Duterte has secured enough support from the Philippine public to take the highest office in the country, he does not, however, have the approval of Philippines’ political elite. While current President Benigno Aquino’s implied warning of a return to dictatorship with a Duterte victory can be seen as a political move to endorse presidential candidate Mar Roxas as Aquino’s preferred successor. But the comment will not be easily forgotten, even as the fever pitch of the campaign trail dies down. It will be hard for Duterte to shake off nicknames like “dictator in waiting” and “Dirty Harry,” especially after his latest “shoot-to-kill” comment and vows to reintroduce capital punishment. The political opposition will no doubt evoke these titles to weaken and discredit his presidency.

Antonio Fuentes Trillanes, a retired Navy officer-turned-senator notorious for leading coup attempts has already warned that a possible military intervention should not be ruled out. One must take seriously the history of military coups that have dogged Philippine political history since the fall of the Marcos dictatorship. The administration of Corazon Aquino was subjected to at least seven coup attempts between 1986 and 1992. Most recently, President Joseph Estrada’s removal in 2001, and several attempts to remove Arroyo during her presidency, demonstrates a long practice of military coups in contemporary political affairs.

While Duterte has indicated salary increases for police, soldiers, and troops, it is yet to be known whether he will pursue the modernization of the Armed Forces of the Philippines with as much energy as Aquino. President Arroyo, who critics accused of being too cozy with the Chinese, ignored external defense and instead focused on quelling domestic terror threats during her term of government. In contrast, the Aquino administration had to respond to increased tension in the disputed waters caused by incidents with Chinese patrols boats in Reed Bank in 2011 and the two-month military standoff in Scarborough Shoal in 2012, among others.

Duterte will inherit a P83.9 billion ($1.77 billion) AFP modernization program, of which Aquino has already spent P56.79 billion on “big ticket” items. With modernization linked to protecting the country’s claims in the South China Sea, Duterte’s openness to explore other options with China may mean investment in external security will receive less attention.

While not denying that the maritime dispute with China is a threat to national security, Duterte has confirmed he wants closer ties with Beijing. This suggests he will resurrect policies from the Arroyo administration, rather than continuing the more popular approach of his direct predecessor. Duterte has signaled that joint exploration of oil and gas in the disputed waters is an option, which is a surprise considering Arroyo’s 2004 Joint Seismic Marine Undertaking agreement with China was widely considered to be a sell-out of Philippine territory. Following this deal, Arroyo secured Chinese funding for the controversial North Luzon Railway, a contract that later became included in the corruption charges filed against her. On a similar note, Duterte said he would “shut up” about China’s reclamation activities if the Asian superpower provided critical transport infrastructure in return.

Once the honeymoon period is over, the criminal killings begin, and Duterte gets too close to China, his family brand might quickly lose its popularity. While he is trying to unite the country, the potential for human rights abuses and risks in the South China Sea will divide it. After a long turbulent history of coup attempts and political instability, the question is, how long will the Philippines — public, military, and political elite combined — put up with the man of many flaws and contradictions?

Danna Diaz is a freelance broadcast journalist. She tweets @dannamdiaz

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