It is good to celebrate Philippine Independence Day. This is a must particularly during these times of discontent and violence, poverty and want. The day of celebration could be at least one day off the national psyche of uncertainty and fear especially brought about by the downright executions here and there. Hence, people may still say “Happy Independence Day”!
But it has to be said that the celebration is at most but symbolic. The Philippines is far from being independent in reality. The truth is that the country is very dependent on many factors, on certain persons. That is why it is also right for people to say “unhappy dependence day”!
The country is much dependent on the good graces of the U.S. government. Uncle Sam remains Uncle Sam to the Philippine government. This is why, among other things, the American dollar dictates the value of the Philippine peso. And the Subic rape case has to be handled with kids’ gloves and tender care before the local courts.
The country is much dependent on the World Bank. Philippine economy is structured according to its wishes in order for the Philippines to get a good credit rating. This in turn is a license for the government to borrow more money and at the same time to impose more direct and indirect taxes on Filipinos from birth to death.
The country is much dependent on OFW dollar remittances, on its oil needs, on cheap imports. This is not to mention the dependence of the government on their revenues both from legal and most probably illegal forms of gambling. That is why it is said that the present administration is the biggest gambling lord in the country.
With the presently obtaining social condition and ethical situation in the country, it would not be advisable for people to hold their breath while waiting for the day that the Philippines will be independent in reality and truth. But at the same time, this is certainly neither the time for them to wallow in pity and despair.
Reason: No matter how bad government is, the people of the Philippines remain good by nature, resilient in spirit, industrious by disposition and creative in living.
12 June 2006