Is Filipino culture a culture of wealth possession or wealth creation?


Money matters. Indeed it does. How to make it, how to manage it when you get it, and how to spend it when you have too much of it. This is what this section, Money Talks, will be all about. We have always asserted that money does flow into the Philippines. But it simply is not put to good use.

European civilisation created wealth and we are inheritors of this wealth. We inherited this wealth but not the ethic that went into creating this wealth. And our trouble began when we got accustomed to this wealth but, since we neither had the ethic nor an appreciation for the discipline required to create it, ended up woefully dependent on a foreign means to create this wealth.

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A society that finds no merit in frugality, simplicity, and self-reliance will forever remain financially bankrupt.

We flaunt wealth that we know nothing about accumulating sustainably.

So for all the trappings of material wealth that occur in little pockets and enclaves across the Philippine archipelago, there is no evidence of its even distribution over the majority of the population. Despite much said about the contributions to the economy of foreign-originated wealth — particularly that much touted Filipino cash cow, the Overseas Foreign Workers (OFWs) — not much of this wealth has persisted nor expanded.

In a past article, I highlighted a comparison at the fundamental level between the two dynamos of the Philippine economy — the OFWs and the Filipino-Chinese (“Chinoy”) community…

Chinoys differ from OFWs as a demographic in that Chinoys possess and wield capital. And not only are Chinoys true capitalists they are also astute creditors. OFWs and their families, on the other hand, are primarily consumers and debtors. They wield purchasing power but not capital. Purchasing power and the predisposition of OFW-supported families to wield this “power” is what props up the consumption-driven component of the Philippine economy — a component that ultimately has the net effect of subtracting wealth from the inherently capital-poor (such as OFW families) while adding even more wealth to the inherently capital-rich (such as the Chinoys).

In this newest section of Get Real Post, money talks. Literally. Here we will explore how the nature and character of the Filipino contribute to her impoverishment at the most profound levels.

5 Replies to “Is Filipino culture a culture of wealth possession or wealth creation?”

  1. Very nice article. I wish all OFWs read and heed this. Print and post it to where they can read it till it sticks like super glue to their pea brain.

  2. This is our predicament as a nation! We survive on “isang kahig, isang tuka” way of life because we as a nation had the uncontrollable habit of “ubos-ubos biyaya, pagkatapos, nakatunganga.” While almost all Pinoys are on vacation spending their money and consuming delicacies like there is no tomorrow, the Chinoys, the owners of malls and lucrative businesses around, are scoping the money….. And we wonder why in the end, Pinoys are still poor despite the windfall of OFW remittances, while Chinoys are becoming richer….

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