Monday, February 1, 2010

My Platform, My Promise

Pork Barrel is destroying our country. It feeds systemic corruption and nourishes immoral political behavior.

The Constitution assigns to Congress, the power to spend. The President may propose a budget but only Congress can appropriate the money and specify the project or activity covered by the funds. We cannot completely abolish pork barrel but we can certainly curtail the pernicious practices associated with it.

To produce Filipinos capable of competing in a 21st century world, we need to invest in health, education and infrastructure. There has been a disproportionate emphasis on infrastructure projects over the last 20 years because of the enhanced opportunities for personal profit.

I propose slashing the infrastructure budget by 90% over the next 3 years, leaving a much reduced amount to maintain existing roads and bridges. The amount saved will be applied towards doubling the salaries of teachers, physicians, nurses and other health workers, soldiers, police.

This measure will attract qualified applicants to fill these essential positions, reverse the exodus of our professionals to other countries and significantly pump-prime the economy because these public servants will increase domestic consumption.

We not only increase our investment in health, education and security, we also minimize the leakage lost to corruption.

We must also de-professionalize politics. We need to return to the days when politics was public service for the common good, when public service required personal sacrifice.

Today, politics has become too personal because many politicians make a healthy living from it. The stakes have been raised immeasurably because more and more public funds are involved. My one, single promise is I will only serve one term in the elective position that I am seeking. Six years is enough time. Nobody should be so arrogant as to think one will not get accustomed to the perks of political power, a condition directly proportional to the length of office.

The day you regard public service as your own exclusive, private domain should be your last day in politics.

1 comment:

Oliver of Bulacan said...

I like your proposal for the reallocation of pork barrel to raise the salary of our government employees, teachers, health workers, service men and women etc. but we should raise the bar of excellence. I'm coming from industry perspective wherein companies have a high standard in employee productivity. Anything below the line should be fired right away. We have a good number of citizens and are very much eligible for any government work, I'm not saying that all government workers are not eligible but there are some gov't employees who are not fit in terms of credential and educational attainment (result of red tape and padrino or kamag-anak system). There are more deserving Filipino professionals for that job. There are several unemployed professionals who are more eligible. I hope LP team can make a change this 2010.