Friday, October 05, 2007

“Bagong Nayong Pilipino Manila Bay Integrated City”

The very long and complicated title alone is already impressive as well as intriguing. In fact, it does not only sound compound but also appears complicated. Its envisioned grandiosity is precisely what generates its suspicious reality and devious intent. A “Nayong Pilipino” that is new? A City that is “integrated”? A City at the “Manila Bay’? This cannot but be a “Trying Hard” Syndrome. The same can only be a poor cosmetology to cover up something sinister and objectionable.

Such an admittedly negative perception is warranted by the mere fact that the complex titled distinct project is being envisioned by no less than the Philippine Amusing Gambling Corporation (PAGCOR). It was first publicized as a whooping 20 billion US dollars work-in-progress. It was thereafter followed by the avid courtship of foreign gambling partners. It was later on blessed by an accommodating PAGCOR franchise. And Philippine History is now in the making.

The country did not only receive a big medal for gross corruption compared to a good number of nations. It does not only have a national leadership that garnered the most negative approval and trust rating among all its more recent predecessors. Wow, lo and behold, it is even proudly prophesied that the Philippines will be more competitive in “tourism and total entertainment” all over Asia—over and above Macao. Translation: The Philippines is envisioned to be the first and foremost gambling country in the Asian region courtesy of PAGCOR.

This is perhaps why someone predicted that the Philippines will be the first world Country in 2030. It is not enough that the over-all national administration is perceived as first in corruption and considered last in approval and trust rating. Under its aegis, it is even proudly projected that the Filipino people will acquire the crowning glory of having the best Asian capital for gambling.

Gambling does not attract holy men and women as clients. Gambling is not meant to promote the virtues of nobility and integrity. Gambling is certainly neither intended to give away money, to educate individuals in the value of toil and industry. Nor is gambling meant to promote family life and values. Otherwise, gambling should have churches for devotions and temples of worship, could claim heroes of gambling as well as have Gambling Patron Saints.

The truth is that the title of “Gambler” does not evoke admiration much less adulation. It is thus understandable that those who own or manage gambling dens—even those loftily called “Corporations”—do not gamble. They only know too well that gamblers have to lose in order for the gambling managements to win. So simple yet so true.

5 October 2007