Saturday, November 15, 2008

Corruption in the Philippines (Nov 15 08)

While in bed at the hospital, or resting at home after my hospitalization, I had occasion to watch the entire proceedings of the Senate inquiry into the Agriculture Undersecretary Jocjoc Bolante's "Fertilizer Scam" and Police Controller De La Paz's "Euro Contingency Fund". I have come to the conclusion that we are NOT the most corrupt country in the world. Corruption happens everywhere, even in the United States of America, and we are not any better or worse than the U.S.A in the matter of corrupt practices of government officials or their friends. What we are well-known for is the ability of our media (radio, TV, print) to expose in a grand scale corruption, no matter how big or small, and blow that issue out for the world to see and to label us as the most corrupt country in the world. The Senate, of course, is contributing to enhancing this popular image of the Philippines as the most corrupt country in the world, by its addiction to TV coverage of all the lurid details of its investigations in "aid of legislation", which also happens to provide free advertising for the presidential wanna-be's in 2010. In our desire for "transparency", which is a "good thing", we give the impression to the world that corruption is everywhere, when in reality, we are just successful in exposing corruption in many more cases here, than the rest of the world. But is that not a good thing?

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