Ateneo PolSci Bloggers

Archive for June, 2009|Monthly archive page

Under Debt, Underdevelopment

In Political Economy, Politics on June 26, 2009 at 9:58 pm

by Rosselle Tugade

Yesterday, a very alarming information tidbit was passively delivered as good news in one of the state-owned television networks: the Philippine government has yet again secured a staggering loan from the World Bank amounting to more or less $70 M as part of a fifteen-year “adaptable programme loan” primarily aimed at improving irrigation systems, which in turn is geared towards agricultural productivity and food security.

This new dubious transaction entered upon by the Arroyo administration touches upon several salient problems that constitute the flaws of the country’s economic policy framework. Ultimately, this move is a reminder that we are deeply mired in the poisonous wells of the neoliberal regime, and our top officials are all too happy to let the country sit in that position of utter stagnation.

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In Culture, Economics, History, Philippine Issues, Political Economy, Political Theory, Politics on June 24, 2009 at 12:17 pm

An Analysis of Local Government Units’ Role in the Current Politico-Economic Crisis and How To Mobilize Against an Arroyo-sponsored Con-Ass

(First of a series)

by Hansley A. Juliano

Leon Trotsky once mentioned how, despite the growing apathy of many people towards political processes, the complexities of political participation loom above everyone and are desirous of including them in it. In a liberal-democratic situation such as which the Philippines possesses, there is this desire to stay away from being involved in governmental undertakings in the desire to undermine the intrusion to their private and personal prospects, unknowingly alienating themselves to the ideal of communal activity and, in a way, an affirmation of themselves. It is no surprise, therefore, that repressive regimes have done well in preserving this order of assemblages in order to perpetuate themselves into power and, therefore, maintain their definite advantage over the majority of the population of the country, recalling to mind the Thrasymachean doctrine of justice being the advantage of the stronger. Read the rest of this entry »

Econo-Mysticism: Unravelling the Illusions of JPEPA

In Culture, Economics, Philippine Issues, Politics on June 19, 2009 at 10:19 pm

by Leiron Martija

The Japan-Philippines Economic Partership Agreement – signed and ratified as a bilateral treaty back in 2006 between the two countries with the goals of improving foreign relations, establishing jobs and an economic alliance. The treaty itself contains interweaving agreements concerning economic policies, trade fences and governmental limits of power. Amidst heavy protest from Filipinos, the JPEPA was signed, and while the lobbyists and protestors argued politically, their demagogy was met by the Arroyo administration’s economic arguments. Suddenly two disciplines, two schools of thought, not too far from each other, found themselves at odds. The problem with addressing an issue such as JPEPA proves to be rather pedagogical in this matter: a political activist will either view it as another political machination for furthering government’s preponderance, while an economist will view it as a rather plausible way of addressing national fiscal problems, with some stipulations needing correction. Nevertheless, to take a closed side in such an issue proves to be irresponsible and myopic. An issue such as JPEPA – which marries economic and political concepts – requires a perspective that is integrated, not bifurcated. The problem is a misunderstanding of the legislation, and this paper seeks to address that problem by engaging the treaty at both terms, at both perspectives.

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The Assembly’s Statement on the Plenary Debates on Charter Change

In History, Politics on June 3, 2009 at 3:52 pm

The staff of this blog, being current officials of The Assembly, the Political Science organization of the Ateneo de Manila University, wishes to share the organization’s stand on last night’s atrocious “gang-rape of democratic institutions” by the venal Un-Representatives at the Bastusang Pambansa led by Prospero Nograles et al. Please do read and share:

Yesterday, June 2 2009, the House of Representatives convened to decide on the issue of H.B. 4077, aka the Comprehensive Agrarian Reform Program with Extensions and Reforms Bill. But in another contrived turn of events, representatives allied with the Arroyo government have instead began plenary debates on the issue of amending the 1987 Constitution by convening the Congress into a Constituent Assembly which will have plenary powers in changing provisions of the constitution. Arroyo’s allies in the lower house intend to do this without a vote in the upper house of Congress – an act considered unconstitutional by many legal experts.

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Bakit Hindi sa Kongreso

In Politics on June 2, 2009 at 11:06 am

ni Hansley A. Juliano

Mga ilang pagkakataon na rin akong nasabihan at napadalhan ng mga imbitasyon at anyaya ng pakikibahagi sa mobilisasyon na magaganap bukas sa harap ng Kongreso. Bilang detalye, narito ang isang email na ipinadala sa akin:

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In Culture, Politics on June 2, 2009 at 7:38 am

by Leiron Martija

Technology has indeed provided our world today with a myriad of comforts and improvements, things that people today unknowingly take for granted; electricity, flight, telecommunications, microwavable foods, automobiles, computers, the list can only go as long as assembly lines and R&D teams will it. However and as always, we must consistently pay closer attention to the greater factory, the greater assembly line, the greater product that is produced: socio-political repercussions. With the progressive march of technological advancements comes the socio-political luggage that either deadens humanity’s weight or plants it firmly in the ground. Where automobiles provided the 19th century convenience, nuclear missiles and Russian artificial satellites induced fear and catalyzed moves for the Cold War. Unarguably, however, no technology has inspired more immediate, pervasive and life-changing effects than that of the Internet; the most immediate of changes, at least for me, being the provision of a virtual public sphere for political discourse.
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