As soon as I finish my dinner, I make it a habit to allow my thoughts to float around to kill some time and stimulate my noggin. This time, my musings led me to a specific passage fromÂ oneÂ of my old, old articles.
Projection has been a Filipinoâ€™s primary weapon when it comes to facing problems, and it seems to work for some; but at what cost? Is the neglect of oneâ€™s personal responsibilities, passing it on the backs of others just for the sake of alleviation of pain justified?
A little trip to Wikipedia can already be fruitful in determining what projection technically means.
|SUPPORT INDEPENDENT SOCIAL COMMENTARY!|
Subscribe to our Substack community GRP Insider to receive by email our in-depth free weekly newsletter. Opt into a paid subscription and you'll get premium insider briefs and insights from us.
Subscribe to our Substack newsletter, GRP Insider!
Psychological projection or projection bias is a psychological defense mechanism where a person subconsciously denies his or her own attributes, thoughts, and emotions, which are then ascribed to the outside world, usually to other people. Thus, projection involves imagining or projecting the belief that others originate those feelings.
Basically, projection is blaming someone in order to feel better about oneâ€™s self. Now, why does a particular personâ€™s face keep popping in my head?
Yup, this time of the year is full to the brim with this projection thing. It would seem that the third plague has struck the Philippines at its most powerful state yet. As you may all know, the president has this curious penchant of passing the burden to someone else when things go awry for him.
Low economic performance? Blame GMA. Sheâ€™s the one responsible for everything bad happening right now.
Trouble withÂ good governance? Blame Corona. Heâ€™s in cahoots with GMA since she appointed her. And since sheâ€™s the one weâ€™re blaming for low economic performance, then we can blame Corona for something as well. How about an impeachment?
Still low economic performance? Blame Noli de Castro. Heâ€™s messing up with the news. His negativism is the reason why people are reluctant to do something for the economy. His critiques are the reason why we canâ€™t progress. Besides, heâ€™s GMAâ€™s right-hand man. We can blame him for something too.
Everythingâ€™s still messed up? Blame Batman. We always depend on him when weâ€™re down, and he canâ€™t even be there when we need him the most.
PNoyâ€™s term has been pockmarked with tiresome blame games to shift the burden of responsibility away from him. After all, come on, who needs responsibility when we can just have someone to take the fall and be praised for it? Time and time again, some personality, some figure in the past will be invoked to take one for the team; for PNoyâ€™s team, that is. PNoy never fails to find ways to clean his hands by bringing up the old administration and its remnants as the perpetual perpetrators of everything thatâ€™s ugly in the Philippines. He always has an alibi up in his sleeve. He always has a human shield. He always has a scapegoat.Â Gosh, heâ€™s so prepared. He truly is the perfect president.
However, a funny thing about projection is that, while it makes you feel better about a problem, it never actually solves the problem (couldnâ€™t be more obvious, huh). The problem is still there, wreaking havoc in your projection-filled life.
PNoy can blame GMA all he wants, but that doesnâ€™t change the fact that the economy is still lagging, and that he can hardly do anything about it. PNoy can blame Corona for everything thatâ€™s bad in the government, but the truth remains that with or without Corona, PNoyâ€™s administration, in its failure to deliver its promises of peace and prosperity, is heavily flawed to begin with. PNoy can blame Noli de Castro until crabs learn how to fly, but it wonâ€™t hide his own inability to meet the greatness expected of him, given his colourful and flowery campaign speeches and whatnot.
Also, another problem with projection-based governance is that you eventually run out of scapegoats. Someday, there will be no people left to blame for your own inaction and incompetence. The reason is simple; the problem just doesnâ€™t lie with them anymore. As the man on the wheel, as the man supposedly capable of change, the problem is now with you.
But this is unacceptable, right? After all, PNoy was the one who brought that 6.4% economic growth in the Philippines! Heâ€™s the one who ousted Corona from office! Heâ€™s the one who showed us the straight path! The fault must lie on someone else! And so, the classic witch hunts will go on indefinitely to make everyone (especially the president) feel better.
So, now while weâ€™re still in the phase of a national goose-chase, we better start counting; how many more scapegoats do we need PNoy? How many can the Philippine society provide to satisfy PNoyâ€™s indulgences?
How many more GMAs and Coronas do we need before we stop pointing fingers, learn to stand up on our own, and simply take responsibility for what went wrong in our sorry country for our own sake?