Monday, July 28, 2008

Why We Have Been Left Behind

Politically conscious Filipinos are wondering what GMA has to say when she delivers her “SONA”, the State Of the Nation Address. Peering from very far away, whatever she has to say does not matter much. We are so far behind. I spent the weekend partly in a place called Kremlin, OK, less than a thousand inhabitants. The First Bank of Kremlin has over $200 million in assets. Town was formerly called Wild Horse until the Russian Ambassador’s daughter, on a railway stopover more than a hundred years ago, commented that the place reminded her of the Kremlin back home.

Kremlin has a Case dealership, you know, like John Deere, manufacturer of farm “implements”. Had some photos taken, next to a tractor that can haul very heavy equipment:



Or a seeder that can easily scatter palay at a rate of 2500 hectares per day.



A Combine, equipped with GPS, fully airconditioned with satellite radio that with the appropriate “head” can till, plant and harvest for an entire province.






My next door neighbor, who farmed until he was 82 years old single-handedly managed 5 sections (or 1294 hectares) of land. This is how productive American farmers are, compared to their counterparts in the Philippines who manage an average of 2 hectares of land with the assistance of a water buffalo. The tractor shown above has a sticker price of $250,000 while the Combine lists at $340,000. Our government officials almost succeeded in skimming off $340 million with one broadband deal. This pathetically illustrates why we are so far behind in productivity.
So the next time some apologist starts justifying how this politician passed this bill requiring teachers to pass a certain kind of test or mandating the singing of the national anthem before the screening of the first feature film in a movie theater or to demand candidates to submit to non-random drug testing, think again, because it will take many quantum leaps for us to even catch a view of the competition pulling away at the edge of the horizon.

7 comments:

azron said...

Corruption is so evil...

Anonymous said...

Farming until they are in their 80's, managing close to a thousand acres per farmer is not a hyperbole. This is the norm here in our state.

To think that the Filipino farmers cannot be as productive as their American counterparts because they do not have access to technology ( lost through rampant corruption) is almost blasphemous.

Our lands are very fertile. Producing enough grains/food can be done if only the politicians will set aside their own personal agenda and advance what is good for everyone.

Kawawa naman ang ating mga kababayan.

md bautista said...

It can only be "blasphemous" when you think a carabao can compete with a Combine. The anomalous ZTE broadband deal alone could have purchased 1000 Combines! We could have easily farmed the entire country.

Anonymous said...

yes, let's farm the philippines! We have so much agricultural potential, that it is such a pity to see it all being laid to waste an underuse, to the point of us having to import rice and other products that we can easily produce by ourselves and even possibly export to other countries.

We are exporting one resource though, that is causing us some hemorrhage - our precious human resources. The best and most creative people are leaking out of the country, leaving the corrupt ones behind. This may not be 100 percent true, but it is the general scenario.

Anonymous said...

yes, let's farm the philippines! We have so much agricultural potential, that it is such a pity to see it all being laid to waste and underused, to the point of us having to import rice and other products that we can easily produce by ourselves and even possibly export to other countries.

We are exporting one resource though, that is causing us some hemorrhage - our precious human resources. The best and most creative people are leaking out of the country, leaving the corrupt ones behind. This may not be 100 percent true, but it is the general scenario.

reyna elena said...

i love what you wrote! yeah! let's farm the philippines.

wait.

we can't.

world bank just reported that there has to be a certain percentage to the sitio commander, barangay captain, konsehal, mayor, governor, congressman, senator, president pati na asawa at mga kabit.

how much was the list price again of the tractor?

can you re-compute?

hahaha!

La Kapitana
www.barriosiete.com

Mahalia said...

Dfish, one of your regular readers cited your link in a conversation on the topic of finding alternative food sources in the Philippines. After I read your article, I am convinced that no matter how many alternatives or mainstream food source the community would wish for, it's just that, wishful thinking. It seems like the priority for rice production by the government is low. *sigh!