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40th Moment: A Senior Citizen on Balik Probinsya, Coins and Beauty

------------------------- Our policymakers and economists are using war strategies to solve the social and economic effect of COVID: SHOCK AND AWE hoping that a short period and amount of financial and food support will stop a looming economic depression. But COVID is not war, it is pandemic. ------------------------- Truth about coins - Coins have always two sides whatever is the denomination. You cannot interchange or interface one side of a coin into the side of another coin, it will not fit, not because of their value but because they have different sizes. Maybe this was designed to tell us that once you are married you cannot change partners because of different sizes! ------------------------- Truth about wings - Wings have two sides in order to have a balance. Just like a man, he needs a woman so there is companionship. A man and a woman need love in order to survive. Birds need wind in order to fly. ------------------------- Truth about beauty - A blind man since birth has the right to ask “what is beauty?” but not those who became blind after seeing the color of money. ------------------------- Decongesting Manila - Now somebody is talking. But decongesting metro manila cannot be done by just a mere BALIK PROBINSYA program. We need a local economic development policy, a comprehensive rural development strategy, a shift in development paradigm from purely macro to meso or micro. We have to re-energize the basic sectors in our communities and adapt new models and knowledge in agriculture and fisheries, local tourism. We must upgrade our myopic program and projects mentality to strategic planning and management. As I have been advocating post-COVID period is an opportunity to plan for this. We have tremendous knowledge and tools to do this, we just need government to accept that ORDINARY PEOPLE’S IDEAS ALSO MATTERS. ------------------------- Our social and economic problems cannot be solved by programs alone. The devolutionary provisions in the local government code is not enough. Federalism is not about geographical partitioning, bureaucratic restructuring and political accommodation. Federalism is about local economics and fiscal autonomy. This is the change that we wanted. But I think the President is tired of political opportunism and vested interest in the federal issue. So, good bye federalism. Be contented with old programs and projects strategies. ------------------------- Let us tell our policy makers the rural to urban migration that exports poverty to the urban centers is a summon to review and redesign our economic development policies - AT LEAST, IF WE DO NOT WANT ECONOMIC AND FISCAL FEDERALISM. ------------------------- Just wondering why, if we allowed the Bangsamoro to have their expanded autonomy through the BARMM, why not give other regions the same power and opportunity? ------------------------- As early as 1973, the economist E.F. Schumacher, in his book Small is Beautiful, already proposed the idea of “smallness within bigness”: a specific form of decentralization (based on economics not politics or geographical partitioning). Schumacher argues that the modern economy is unsustainable. Natural resources (like fossil fuels), are treated as expendable income, when in fact they should be treated as capital, since they are not renewable, and thus subject to eventual depletion. ------------------------- Schumacher’s philosophy is one of “enoughness,” appreciating both human needs, limitations and appropriate use of technology. It grew out of his study of village-based economics. He faults conventional economic thinking and blasts notions that “growth is good,” and that “bigger is better.” He questioned the appropriateness of using mass production in developing countries, promoting instead “production by the masses.” Schumacher was one of the first economists to question the appropriateness of using GNP to measure human well-being, emphasizing that “the aim ought to be to obtain the maximum amount of well-being with the minimum amount of consumption.” ------------------------- COVID will definitely bring us food problem. With people immobilized by lockdowns and quarantine, food becomes the only necessity for survival. Rural economics and community development are no longer in the minds of our policy makers – unlike before when we had PACD, DLGCD. With the basic and small agriculture sector that feed the poor and middle class being disregarded and marginalized, food supply and distribution is likely to suffer. Processed food as an alternative will be costly to ordinary people, unless it will be subsidized by government – through taxes of the people. ------------------------- COVID might finally bring into reality the foretold WORLD DIGITAL ECONOMY (not a new world economic order) through Cryptocurrency. Digital economy is a system while the plan of a secret gang for a new world economic order is a structure that they want global role and manipulation. ------------------------- On global trade - The new problem of the world trade organization is no longer on goods and commodities because countries are now trading platforms and applications. ------------------------- Presidents are humans too. Spider Man’s uncle said it as a fact: With great powers come great responsibility! Who would want to be President of a country today if s/he knew there will be pandemic? ------------------------- The War of the Corporate Animals - The USA has its military might while China uses its business strategy - both with one and only goal: world domination. They cannot face each other frontally, so they use coronavirus as the issue; each blaming each other for the pandemic. Meanwhile the global economy suffers and humanity is compromised. Which way for us to go? Shall we side with either of the two? Or shall we play neutral and watch who will be the victor in the end? (If this war will ever end!). -------------------------

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