A Country On Its Knees (written June 2007)


“The Philippines’ flamboyant former first lady Imelda Marcos was acquitted of tax evasion [to the tune of 39.4 million pesos] Wednesday after a court ruled she did not receive any tax notices because she had fled into exile.”

Her defense implies that she didn’t know that she had to pay taxes. I’m sure that’s not true; and even if it is, ignorance of the law excuses no one from compliance. I can’t believe she won this case.


“Starting this school year, the Department of Education is implementing Executive Order No. 210, which calls for the use of English as the primary medium of instruction in public and private high schools. The order is aimed at improving the English proficiency of students and their chances of landing a job in call centers, a fast-growing industry in the Philippines.”

I wish that there were accompanying steps to improve the quality of instruction of the local languages as well, so that students would be proficient (and not half-baked) bilinguals. And speaking of quality of instruction, how about improving on science, math, and the rest of the subjects too? Especially for public schools.


The first buildings of the University of the Philippines in Diliman were positioned thoughtfully. The administration building was at the head. The library was at the heart, representing the desire for knowledge. On both sides of the library were the College of Engineering and the College of Arts and Sciences – the arms – because the arts and sciences should extend society’s reach. Next to them were the College of Law and the College of Education – the legs – because society should stand on justice and education.

So much for standing.


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