Now that we have a new president who wanted to be called P-Noy ( short of president Noy-Noy Aquino), the talk about graft and corruption has somewhat stopped. P-Noy has reiterated that ending corruption in the Philippines is one of the top priority of his administration. But will he ever be successful in his goal since no one in the Philippines could end the rule of the political dynasties, unless the masses and the voters do it in the future elections. Here's a short article about political dynasties, I found interesting as I was surfing in the web recently.
"For generations, political dynasties have dominated politics and governance in the Philippines. They are prominent and moneyed clans, like that of President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo, whose father was also president and whose son is a congressman. s.
Experts say that dominance of Philippine politics by such dynasties has grown more pervasive in recent years.
There are an estimated 250 political families nationwide, with at least one in every province, occupying positions in all levels of the bureaucracy, according to the Center for People Empowerment in Governance, a nonprofit group that advocates more grassroots participation in politics. Of the 265 members of Congress, 160 belong to these clans, the group says.
"These are the same families who belong to the country's economic elite, some of them acting as rule makers or patrons of politicians who conspire together to amass greater economic power," said Bobby Tuazon, director of the center.
Analysts say members of the dynasties have developed a sense of entitlement regarding public positions, while many ordinary Filipinos accept the arrangement as inevitable, which makes it difficult to change the situation.
Political dynasties were an offshoot of the country's colonial experience, in which the Filipino elite was nurtured by Spanish and American colonizers. Even after the country gained independence, in 1946, the largely feudal system persisted, as landed Filipino families sought to protect their interests by occupying public offices.
When he was president in the 1970s and 1980s, Ferdinand Marcos blamed the political dynasties for what was wrong with the country and promised to dismantle them. He did, but then replaced them with new ones that he controlled. These families persist to this day.
Because Filipinos tend not to vote according to class, ethnicity, religion or even ideology, the Filipino family has become "the most enduring political unit and the one into which, failing some wider principle of participation, all other units dissolve," Brian Fegan, an American anthropologist and historian, wrote in the book "An Anarchy of Families: State and Family in the Philippines."
Analysts say the dominance of the clans has prevented the flowering of genuine democracy in the Philippines.
"Continuing clan dominance is a product of the seemingly immutable and unequal socioeconomic structure, as well as the failure to develop a truly democratic electoral and party system," said Julio Teehankee, a political science professor at De La Salle University in Manila.
The system is a vicious cycle, one that prevents the expansion of the base of aspirants and candidates for representation, Teehankee said. The result, he added, is a political system dominated by patronage, corruption, violence, and fraud.
Apart from violence, election fraud sparks the most concern during elections. According to the Center for People Empowerment in Governance, "fraud recycles the political dynasties and keeps them in power."
"It breeds generations of cheaters and manipulators, corrupt politicians, mediocre executives, bribe takers, absenteeism in Congress," the center said.
Planning to Visit the Philippines Soon?
There are hundreds of tourists attractions in the Philippines. But as a lover of the Island of Marinduque (Home of the Morions and Heart of the Philippines), I am indeed partial to its beauty, charm and its friendly and hospitable residents. Therefore, help me achieve my dream of seeing this island becomes a world tourist destination, by telling all your friends and relatives about this site. Welcome, to you all, new readers and faithful followers of this site! The photo above is Poctoy White Beach in Torrijos, Marinduque with beautiful and majestic Mt Malindig in the background. Some of the photos and videos on this site, I do not own. However, I have no intention on infringing your copyrights. Please do not forget to read the latest National and International news in the right side bar of this blog!