Monday, September 27, 2010

Your neighbor, your friend!

An Article entitled "Missing the Point" ( caught my attention and reading one paragraph of the article forced me to write a comment of my own. (Read the article and the comments) Many thoughts are beginning to surface that at first glance might seem appealing. But there are many attitudes starting to emerge that seem counterproductive. So many people seem to be preparing themselves for the coming failure of the just elected President, or at least a lengthy battle to solve the many problems here. So many people are resigned in their own knowledge, or belief that things here will never change.

While the President does seem to be up against a formidable battle against corruption and poverty, I for one know he can succeed. The recipe for improvement is much easier in this electronic age, when our voices can be heard by thousands of people a day. The "People Power" movement featured heavily in the life of this inspiring individual Benigno Simeon Cojuangco Aquino lll. Remembering the power, the President should use all means at his disposal to get the job done.

A sector of the society here in the Philippines has for many years faced uphill battles. Many foreigners come here to live with their lovely wife, and invest in the community. Many have businesses and have struggled, sometimes for years, against the "Terrorist Act of Corruption". A British friend of mine relayed a story to me of a friend of his, another British Gentleman, who came to the Philippines to live with his wife and help the economy of their chosen community by opening a business that would employ several people. SOP’s, Graft, and Corruption, as well as “Crab Mentality” and “I got to get mine first attitude.” presented him with one delay after another. (It seems that no one in the Philippines understands the expression: “Time is Money”). Eventually all those struggles took its toll on this man’s good natured and caring personality. A man, who came here to be happy while also helping his adopted home, took his own life in desperation. How despicable a community that must have been, to allow a generous honorable man to reach the point that it seemed better to end his life since he had nothing left.

A terrible ending, even so there are many foreigners here right now that can help improve the economy quickly if they are given the chance, given a fair no-corruption chance to get their business started providing jobs for the citizens of their chosen community. Those jobs provide income which will be used mostly in that community for the purchase of taxable items. Not only will the economy of the community improve, but the taxable income of the employees as well as the business will provide a much needed influx of taxes to the Municipal Governments as well as the BIR.

The foreigners who live here are your friends; many of them are standing ready to help if given the opportunity. Some might be in struggles all their own and need immediate intervention to fulfill their hope of helping their neighbors. If you are a local official, an honest one interested in your community, seek these people out. If their path has been rough try to smooth the way for them. If you are a Corrupt Official, don’t underestimate someone you may have cheated, their character could overpower you and your despicable actions. Unlike the British Gentleman, there are some foreigners who fight when cornered or placed against a wall. Don’t be surprised if one day you are under scrutiny the likes you cannot even imagine.

Added note: These foreigners are usually the best kind of people. They are usually men in their middle to late middle years in age, usually younger than retirement age. That alone should tell you something. It's not cheap to pick yourself up move 8000 miles to a country where most things are unfamiliar to you, many of the people you meet you are not able to communicate properly with, and you are in a place completely foreign to your life experiences. These foreigners who usually become Permanent Residents have many skills and talents they achieved in their home country that they are more than willing to share with the people they have adopted as friends and neighbors. These men are usually very successful in their careers and lives, again "Its not cheap" to come here. And while these men usually have some funds to keep them comfortable, they are usually not millionaires. When they come here with plans to help a community while also providing themselves a comfortable living, corruption has no business putting a stop to their ambitions of being kind-hearted, helpful, and a good neighbor. Just take a look at one of them Randy Bradbury at     

As I peruse the varied and mostly constructive articles a thought comes screaming out at me. When will we hear from the Religious Leaders? They have known all along that these practices of corruption are not only wrong, but even more importantly strictly against the teachings of the Holy Bible. (Exodus 20:17 "Thou shalt not covet thy neighbour's house, thou shalt not covet thy neighbour's wife, nor his manservant, nor his maidservant, nor his ox, nor his ass, nor any thing that [is] thy neighbour's.") Are not these officials coveting something (money) which belongs to someone else?

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