Breadloser Mentality remains the Undoing of Filipino Society

The debates on the problems of Filipino society go in many directions, but for Get Real Philippines, one remains the center of them all: unnecessary dependence. All of our writings hinge on this point, that the cause is the Filipino’s mendicant attitude, noticed by American writer James Fallows and by the inspiration of our webmaster’s monicker, Teodoro Benigno. The latter’s classic article, “Culture: The Real Culprit,” identified the Philippines’ mendicant culture as the culprit behind corruption, patronage, laziness, incompetence and other problems of Philippine society. To coin a term, if there is a breadwinner, the problem is the breadloser.

beggar breadloser

Photo from Flickr

These days, I believe one real test of a person’s character is whether they agree with this principle: you don’t deserve what you did not work for. If a person believes in this, they are more likely to have true decency and respect for others. When they believe that they deserve something they did not work for, that means they likely don’t respect other people and think nothing of conducting deceit, trickery and taking from others.

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In many other cultures (likely the cultures we hate), insisting on dependence when you are a person capable of supporting yourself is considered anathema. You would be looked down upon because all you want to do is take without contributing anything. Chronic one-sided dependence is seen as equivalent to stealing.

The rich and middle-class kids who are so spoiled and got used to having things done by servants are an effect of this. I also see this in parents who want to milk our tradition of making children care for their parents. Some parents make as many children as they can with the hope that these become their future ATMs, to the point that once a child has just started working, they will immediately resign from work and depend on this child. But this is selfishness, not parental love.

Even corruption can be traced to that attitude. Of course, you’d steal if you believed you deserve what you never worked for. People borrow money or things, then they refuse to pay or return. Disregard for traffic rules, having no discipline, and wanting to get away with cheating are part of this, too. Same with people who ask for something from others and if they are refused, they bark like raging dogs against the refusers, such as a child beggar who, after getting nothing from a jeep’s passengers, shouted expletives at them. Some even go as far as to try to ruin that refuser’s reputation, or want to “punish” what they will portray as a stingy non-giver. All of this is a result of nasty Filipino sense of entitlement and mendicancy.

Ohhh, Those Foreigners

Another area where I believe Filipino mendicant attitudes manifest is the self-contradictory love-hate attitude towards foreigners. There expats in the group who post criticisms about Filipinos that other Filipinos complained about. They say foreigners have no right to criticize Filipinos, but perhaps they say so because the foreigners only point out the truth, and truth hurts. While there are foreigners who have been abusive and foul, there are still others whose words hit home, including our own guest foreign bloggers.

I also have always believed, as I said in a previous article, that so-called colonial mentality is not a problem, but is a decoy. A more real source of the problem is our native tribal attitudes. Yes, that’s sure to ruffle our feathers. As observed by Spanish explorer Miguel Lopez de Legazpi, native Filipinos were quarrelsome, selfish, deceptive and violent. This is the kind of attitude that carried on throughout time, through squabbles among the “heroes” of the revolution, among guerrillas in World War 2, to today’s wild wild west country of warlords. Perhaps what colonizers added to this was simply the organizational framework that allowed all these defects of Filipino attitudes to spread to a national level. And thus, Filipino society is primitive tribal dysfunction multiplied by national institutions (which include companies and media organizations as well as government).

I argue that the breadloser mentality has become part of our national identity. For example, Filipinos cry that they are “oppressed” by other countries, then insist on receiving hand-outs or “assistance” from these same countries (ahem, like a certain “media company” now in hot water for being funded by a similar thing, ahem). Some might support this as “payback” against former colonial masters. But the US already gave us hand-outs through its Marshall Plan. That’s the reason for seeming prosperity that made us “second to Japan.” But it also highlights that any “greatness” we have is based on dependence on other countries. The breadloser mentality is not only on the individual and family levels, but also on the national level.

On the other hand, there are some good things we can borrow from foreign influences, such as science and good cultural practices. Some “patriotic” Filipinos even believe in excising any foreign influence, especially western ones. But they should realize that these are where we got our concept of human rights and democracy, and well as modern technology and governance systems. So we risk rejecting these important contributions if we want to remove everything so-called foreign invaders “shoved” onto us.

This attitude is present in Filipinos’ anti-English or anti-foreign sentiments, where they insist that we should just speak “Filipino.” This is also a manifestation of the freeloading attitude, because Filipinos see learning another language just as a barrier to getting what they want. Such Filipinos wish that they could get whatever they want without acting or even thinking. That will only make sure that we fail to understand things that keep us from going back to the stone age, such as science (but it seems Filipinos DO want to go back to the stone age). Local languages are already ingrained in culture, so learning foreign languages (and ideas) expands our horizons.

It’s time to stop this mentality that other countries are to blame for the Philippines’ problems. We are actually shooting ourselves in the foot. We should stop believing that other countries giving us “aid” or similar things is going to help us. We’ve been receiving that for years and we’re still in the pits.

I have always believed that our tribal and ethnic beliefs account for a large part of our defective society. But of course, tribes in any country think only of themselves, and see any other tribes as the enemy. Traditional customs often have the goal of not only keeping out people from the outside, but also making sure members of the tribes are kept from having independent thinking and initiative to be better. I would encourage the shedding of tribal cultural identities and customs and embracing the modern, tribeless culture.

Family Sharing Traditions and Religion

I have also criticized how the structure of many Filipino families show a chronic cycle of dependence. Aside from what I described above on abusive parents, there are other cases. Some patriots would say, look at Filipino workers, they are industrious, hardworking and intelligent. True enough. Now look at the other side: who are they supporting? Usually five to ten or more relatives, including extended family, who do nothing but laze all day, maybe waste their time looking at social media on their cellphones or watch local TV shows that encourage mendicancy itself. Some might even have affairs, even if their spouse abroad supports them. And because of the Filipino family system and values, they believe they are entitled to this setup, that they are entitled to what someone else slaved for. This is deserves criticism. There should be support for working Filipinos who want to stop this structure of abuse.

Filipinos like to use religion to justify their actions. In the case of dependence, they would cite “ask and you shall receive,” or “the meek shall inherit the earth,” even if current Christian scholarship says that these had nothing to do with justifying freeloading. Such freeloaders would rather ignore the verse that says, “he who refuses to work should not eat.” The chapter where you find that even talks about the dangers of idleness. Christian belief never supported freeloading. In addition to this is that much-vaunted myth that a situation of dependence is love. Nope, there can be dependence situations where one is using the other, or despises the others. A situation of dependence is not love.

Also, there is this foolishness that you should let a person freeload or else they’ll do wrong. Then that is wrong, because it’s like that freeloader is holding you hostage. They are nothing but trouble-makers, and if they were really decent, they would find work on their own.

Yet another thing that came to mind is, why do Filipinos feel inferiority complex? Under breadloser mentality, Filipinos attach their well-being and sanity to their being spoiled. Often, the spoiled people are the loudest boasters. Once they are unspoiled and the freeloading stops, the breadlosers will panic and they begin to feel inferior, because their source of fake superiority is busted. It’s a good explanation for how many Filipinos behave.

Freeloading also isn’t limited to material forms. Pinoy Pride, for one. For example, riding on a Filipino’s achievement abroad, claiming, “I’m like that person, being his countryman, so praise me as well!” This is non-material mooching – credit, recognition of achievement, fame and other things are grabbed by other Filipinos who had nothing to do with the actual achievement. Or another example is a co-worker who notices your achievement, and can have two possible reactions – “Hey man, we’re good, OK, I’m snoozing up to you” or “Stop doing that! You’ll make us look bad! Join us in being incompetent or you have no pakisama!” You could call this “sabit” (hanging on to others), which can also be seen as crab mentality.

Successful societies are made up of people who consider it normal to help oneself, and asking for help usually indicates an emergency. It is the ideal that everyone should be a breadwinner, and no one should really be a breadloser. It is indeed quite idealistic, but is not cruel or unrealistic. It is accompanied by believing that the world owes them nothing. This is a message not just for millennials, but for our society as a whole. While the Philippines seems quite far from being a more self-sufficient society, people’s attitudes seem to be gradually changing as a whole. More people, even among the poorer ones I know, remark that work is necessary for life, and avoiding it is reprehensible. They realize that more breadlosers than breadwinners is pulling our country down, with so much consumption done by people who refuse to bust a sweat even if they were capable of it. Perhaps within the family and grassroots levels the work ethic of Filipinos improves, and hopefully it will quickly work it’s way into the socio-political arena.

63 Replies to “Breadloser Mentality remains the Undoing of Filipino Society”

  1. “Basta Pinoy Da Best”,

    ” Proud to be pinoy!!” ,

    “Its More Fun In the Philippines” ,

    “Puso!!!!” ( yet ignore the scoreboard) ,

    people that bring their 10 month old to the vicinity of your place of work then approach you and have their hand out expecting money from complete strangers.

    people that yell ” taho!!!!!!!!!!!!!” at 6 AM on a Sunday morning in a residential neighborhood.

    people that yell ” baluuuut!!!!!!!!!!!!!” at midnight in a residential neighborhood.

    people that expect Azkals victory when there is no viable amateur soccer in the grassroots level.

    “walang corrupt walang mahirap ” while ignoring the reality of “wala naman trabaho”.

    In short pinoy entitlement. They want quality rewards without quality work. Their hand is literally and figuratively out for that reward they feel they are entitled to.

  2. Another classic ChinoF article. More please.

    >> Chronic one-sided dependence is seen as equivalent to stealing.
    I suspect this is why Filipinos at the bottom of the heap see no practical difference between the two, and will switch between begging (or “borrowing”) and stealing as the opportunity presents itself.

    >> Perhaps what colonizers added to this was simply the organizational framework that allowed all these defects of Filipino attitudes to spread to a national level. And thus, Filipino society is primitive tribal dysfunction multiplied by national institutions (which include companies and media organizations as well as government).

    Absolutely spot-on. Giving Filipinos the tools of bureaucracy and democracy was like handing a pyromaniac a barrel of gasoline.

    1. COLONIAL MENTALITY IS GOOD !!! Spain colonize the Philippines physically but not mentally. COLONIAL MENTALITY IS GOOD !!! Proof? Here are the proofs:
      1. Last remaining colonists are now industrialists without the last remaining colonists Filipinos would still be tilling the land
      2. The Last Remaining colonists, the descendants of original colonists that American-appointed Fake Hero Jose Rizal demonized, is a show the colonists are intelligent people unfortunately for Filipinos the Spanish colonists were not able to colonize the brains of Filipinos no matter how they whack them in the head
      3. RAPPLER and the rest of PHILIPPINE FAKE NEWS run by FAKE JOURNALISTS graduate from UNIVERSITY OF THE PHILIPPINES, ATENEO, La SALLE never ever found wrong with the last remaining colonists management and their industry. They never found they corrupted Filipinos. They never found they stole from the Filipinos. They never found enslaved Filipinos. These last Colonists give Filipinos better benefits and better pay and awesome working conditions

      COLONIAL MENTALITY IS GOOD !!! Only thing Spain failed to colonize the Filipino brains and changed their culture BECAUSE FILIPINOS WOULD RATHER WANT TO BE WHAT THEY ORIGINALLY WERE …..

      *** COLONIAL MENTALITY IS GOOD *** stop bashing Spanish colonists !!!

  3. Just a thought about the fear of freeloaders causing trouble if their source of income says “no”. Tribal societies, flawed as they are, often have very robust systems of law and order. Those who disrupt tribe coherence are usually punished severely. Freeloading is not tolerated because tribal societies just aren’t able to carry any dead weight.

    Not in the Philippines. Wrongdoing is almost always excused or ignored by Barangay-level authorities, mainly because those in charge of the show are (unsurprisingly) incompetent, lazy, or too close to the problem (eg., the troublemaker is a distant cousin of the Barangay captain). Modern law enforcement, which attempts to be impartial, fair, and on the side of the majority would go a long way towards fixing this.

    1. R.P. LAW ENFORCEMENT SUCKS run by PMA graduates !!! Law Enforcement, the Justice System in cahoots with extremely FAKE NEWS run by FAKE JOURNALISTS run by U.P.-journalism graduates and Law graduates ALREADY TOLD lawmaker TRILLANES TO RUN FOR HIS LIBERTY by publishing he has 10 arrest warrants ….WHEEEW !!! Now, they are now in the hunt of Trillanes because they cannot find him …


      SUPER-IDIOTS …… WHEN PMA ATTACKS CHINA … They will publish it in RAPPLER they are going to attack China with their high-tech pump-boats ….. SUPER-IDIOTS …..

      AS SIMPLE AS this and they cannot know? And they are looked at as intelligent people? NOW, IMAGINE THIS, what about those people who never set their foot in Ateneo, la Salle, U.P. and PMA? THEY MUST BE EXTREMELY STUPID AS WELL ………

  4. Well the government just sign into law a medical insurance for everyone but who foots the bill for non-contributors? It’s taxpayers money from the middle class who certainly have worked for it.

    1. Sancho,
      having a health (or medical) insurance is mandatory/compulsory in my country. What does that mean? When you don’t have one, you go to prison? No. You will get arrested? No. But if you need health care (surgery, medication) you will NOT get it. You will only get it in the case of a life threatening situation.

      1. as what I understand, Robert, Filipinos have medical insurance under Social Security System. PhilHealth which my Pinay GF is my covered is very very very very very Affordable.

        Although, SSS only covers a portion of medical cost but it is good enough than nothing at all.

        This is the one that I like about Philippines along with Filipinos smiling at me and try their English as best as they can because I am foreigner BUT NOT KIND TO MY PINAY GF. She is accused to no end as a stripper lucky that I sleep with her.

      2. You have to look from the perspective of a taxpayer. Who wants to foot somebody else’s hospital bill? As a forced PhilHealth member myself, I can’t find any reason for me and my employer to be forced by law to cough hundreds and thousands of pesos so some poor loser will have healthcare insurance. Everybody should have freedom to choose their healthcare provider.

        1. @justme: that “poor loser” could be you someday. That’s why most developed countries have some form of health insurance.

          If you wanted to opt out of the system, then logically you should be denied treatment if you get run over by a jeepney. Sounds reasonable, right?

          The problem with the SSS system is that it’s run by incompetent idiots. Business admin is so fragmented between different agencies that the employer wastes more money on complying with the rules than he actually contributes to the system; and SSS then go on to waste another chunk of his contributions on internal costs.

          If the system were properly integrated with the tax system, if taxes were administered fairly and efficiently, and if there were some clear benefit for everyone, nobody would mind paying for such things. Unfortunately, I can’t see that ever happening as long as Filipinos are in charge. I think it was Benign0 who pointed out that Tagalog has no exact translation for “efficiency”.

        2. Ha! Ha! This is, hilariously, a rare gem of a comment!

          From a crudely proud hypothesis and arrogant perspective of a taxpayer that blinded a natural ability to find a reason, then comes a scientific guess, “that “poor loser” could be you someday”! Clap! Clap!

  5. You hit the nail on the head in describing the Philippine problem of dependency. I agree that the problem originates from tribal culture and not from the effects of colonization. Since dependency has become endemic and is deeply ingrained in individuals’ mindset as well as social structure, how would one introduce the concept of supporting oneself as stated by the apostle Paul in 2 Thes 3:10, “…if anyone is unwilling to work, he shall not eat” (actually, based on the prevalence of “breadlosing”, it appears that the Catholic church in the Philippines has failed to teach this value.)

    1. “…IF ANYONE IS UNWILLING TO WORK, HE SHALL NOT EAT, b-u-t It is a sin to despise one’s neighbor, but blessed is the one who is kind to the needy. Whoever oppresses the poor shows contempt for their Maker, but whoever is kind to the needy honors God. Whoever is kind to the poor lends to the Lord, and he will reward them for what they have done.

      1. Filipinos aren’t needy. The average Filipino leaves a trail of havoc behind him just by going through his daily routine of being useless; if he could divert that destructive energy into doing something useful, he’d be a lot better off.

      2. There you go with Marius’ reply. And things are not always as they seem. That means people who seem needy are not always needy. Or else there wouldn’t be those cases of well-to-do who were able to get benefits from the CCT program here. Then you have that case of a woman who asked for money from a pastor, claiming it was for buying food for her baby. But the pastor followed her and found that she bought liquor instead. If you want to give to the needy, do it the right way, not by giving what they ask.

  6. “who are they supporting?”

    Husband: My parents comes first.
    Wife: No, my parents comes first.
    Husband/wife: If that is the case, we must separate.
    Children: What about us?

    1. What is wrong in the picture you painted?
      All those topics/items should have been talked about BEFORE marriage. Even making kids, should have been talked about BEFORE actually making them.

      It is NOT granted that when 2 people are head over heels in love they will make babies. Love itself has nothing to do with making or wanting babies. Being married is not a sign (milestone) that babies must be made.

      Okay so now there are kids (your picture), with a good laid out divorce plan (and law) including alimony the kids should be taken care of. It’s the wisest decision to give the actual care/custody of the kid(s) to that person with the highest income (and not to the poorest of the 2).

      1. I’m just making an additional comments about those avaricious parents who indoctrinated their children of their concept of what is being a “good child”(mabait na anak) is, to the point of making sure that they will still be given priority even though their offspring already has a family of their own to give priority to. One of the many reasons why there are a lot of family break-ups.

        You talk about Pilipinos that they know about this marriage agreement, well, they don’t, and even if they do, they will not care about it, just sign the contract and be done with it so we can have sex.

        If you have a Pinay GF ask her what being a “good child” is.

    2. JAPAN:
      1. Country first
      2. Company second
      3. Family third

      2. Family 2nd
      3. COMPANY & COUNTRY the most last …

        1. I sure am a selfish person.
          I think it’s in part instilling the right values. And that you have to be competent enough to plan and strategize in order for that hard work to work and achieve desired results.

  7. Thanks for the web article Chino F…you have shown us all what is wrong with us.

    I have an American friend, who is married to a Filipina. The wife sends a regular part of her earnings to her family in the Philippines. She is sending some nephews, nieces to colleges in the Philippines.
    Regularly, she sends a “balikbayan box” , full of goods to her family and relatives.

    I think everyone in her family wants something from her, because she is in the U.S., and is married to an American.

    My American friend complained to me: “I married her. I did not marry her family.”

    I cannot even define what mindset, we have as Filipinos (me included). We call it: dependence, mooching, taking advantage of others, etc…

    Indeed, this is the source of our corruption in our government. The political leaders have followers. He/she must take care of their needs…and the followers must be ready “to die” , for the political leader.

    So, our government is full of incompetent political appointees. Some are even, “15th-30th day basis ” employees. That means to say ; the political appointee, go only to office, on the 15th and 30th day of the month to collect his/her pay. These are “ghost employees”, or “phantom employees”, who are “malakas” to the political leader, who placed her/him in that government position.

    This maybe the reason, we have : DAP, PDAP, Pork Barrel Bribery, etc…

    Still, I cannot figure out this nonsense mindset, that we have…it is unique…found only in the Philippines !

      an OFW supports:
      1. Father
      2. Mother
      3. Sibling

      *** 10% of Filipinos are OFWs ***
      10% of 110,000,000 squirming, backstabbing, Colonist-blaming anti-colonial mentality FILIPINOS you get 11,000,000 working Filipinos trolling for morsel of jobs other countries wouldn’t want to work in.

      11,000,000 Filipinos multiplied by 3 (Father, Mother & Sibling) 33,000,000 Filipinos dependent on 11,000,000 Filipino OFWs. That is a total of 44,000,000 Filipinos or 40% of the population is dependent on OFW trolling.

      What is left is 60% some of them are already old to work … some of them drug dealers … BPO workers … and the unlucky ones are enslaved by working class who are made to stand before a wall with slippers thrown at them …..


      Job of last resort is in the MILITARY where they are disciplined to be macho men

    Has anyone noticed in the Philippines they practice justice thru witness accounts not by forensic evidences?

    And their justice is also by feelings and circumstances. OH, POOR FILIPINOS.

    *** Philippines should pass a law to get clearance from the government to have a baby***

    There should be a minimum income requirement for Filipinos to have a baby. China had one-child policy. Philippines should have INCOME BASED CHILD POLICY.

    Poor Filipinos should not produce defective Filipinos to put a stop on perpetual cycle of poorness. POOR FILIPINOS obviously PRODUCE DEFECTIVE FILIPINOS when Filipinos are already defective enough.

    1. HAR! HAR! HAR! Actually in the Philippines, it is the rich that has two or less babies than Poor. WHY IS THAT? WHY ARE THE POOR MASS PRODUCING BABIES?


      When Yolanda wiped out Leyte with tens of thousands of washed away dead …. the following morning 12,000 replacement babies were born in baby factories all over Tacloban.

      SO, IF YOU THINK DYING IS TO BE CRIED ON ….. think again … there will be more babies to come.

  10. ChinoF,

    It is not the attitude of the people that should be pointed out. It is only a minor problem. It must be how the government under the leadership of the president should run the country because it can always make a difference above the daily dose of lives of the ordinary Filipinos who are trying to earn and live every day. It is the president who, by using its influence in the government, can change laws that could change the mindset, attitude and even the livelihood of the Filipinos to be better if these laws are properly and strictly implemented continuously. See how Filipinos adopt in other countries when laws are strictly implemented, they behave and they adjust to how other country’s laws are working, and not the host country will adjust to them. Moreover, the president is also the one who has the right authority to convince the multinational corporations to invest in the country and in return, give additional employment to the Filipinos and taxes to the government, which taxes will be used to fund government projects and services like infrastructure and health care that could help create right environment to the Filipinos to live decently and comfortably.

    Filipinos are natural followers if we have good but strict implementation of the laws, abundant jobs to fill in the gaps of the number of workers, good salaries enough to live decently and good educational standards capable of establishing morality, critical thinking and discipline to the Filipinos so that they will have the inspiration to eventually change and be better. And the bigger change will start from what the President can offer. That is why other countries in Asia who became rich from dirt poor were acknowledged by their right leaders that led them to where they are now, and not how the ordinary people behaved before because those people had changed their attitudes/behaviours when their leaders forced them to change. Because ordinary people’s attitude/mindset will change, if leadership in the government thru its leader will be the one to lead that needed change. That is the normal cycle and always the case to most history.

    1. Pinoy Citizen,
      I really dont understand why you are so obsessed by the word “leader’. In daily life, I dont need a government at all. Only in some cases, it is practical that laws are liberal so that I can file for a divorce, have an abortion, have same-sex marriage etc etc. But for that I dont need a leader. I just need a government who understands what a country needs to evolve and to progress and where the individual is far more important than the ‘group’. Every group consists of different individuals.

      As long as the Philippines will not have liberal laws, the country will never progress. Because it is impossible – for an individual – to develop him-/herself.

      1. Robert,

        It is the necessity of the Philippines as of the moment because Filipinos have unruly and undiscipline attitude so they need lots of government interventions to correct those things. In your country it is the opposite. That is why I said laws have to be strictly implemented and government need a lot to focus more attention in national building to change Filipino mindsets and attitudes. Filipinos are mostly discipline when they are in the middle east because laws are strong there. That says a lot the importance of strict law implementation and government initiatives of building towards the right direction this country should be going. And this government’s efforts will eventually influence and change the mindsets of Filipinos. And ChinoF enumerating those things above will eventually perish in due time if Filipinos see the right leader is leading them towards the right path.

        1. The Philippines hasn’t corrected or solved anything. Name anything that the country has solved. Problems that solved are things that matter such as things that actually matter. Not anything related to feelings or drugs. We all know the drug problem is still a problem and hasn’t been solved

      2. I really don’t understand your obsession with Liberal Laws. Like Pinoy Citizen’s obsession on leaders, as you so “rightfully” point out, I fail to see how having Liberal Laws will somehow help fix the Philippines.

        Besides, we’ve seen attempts to do something similar in Africa. They all failed.

        If anything, people like you need to just give up on Utopian projects like Liberal anything.

      3. So you think that evolving and progessing means……being able to do what ever you want without caring about the long term consequences for society?

        Nothing happens in a vacuum. Everything you want to defend has provably done nothing but ruin societies that allow, champion, or promote them.

        At this stage, I wonder if you’re an actual person or a meat robot.

        If you actually are a real person, I pity you, here’s an article of absolute truth that will help you get fixed.

    2. It’s not always the ‘leader’ or even the ‘president’ should do this and that. And it’s not a minor problem because culture affects everyone, even with people at the top. And it always starts with the individual, not the other way around.

      As the saying goes, “People want change yet people don’t want to change.”

      1. LupatX,

        No. It is the government where the buck stops because they have the great power and huge resources. Filipinos just need to find the right leader. Laws have to be strictly implemented to get rid of vote buying, corruption and abuse of public funds. Change has to start first at the top then eventually all those in the bottom will follow suit. Because at the top where all the initiatives, plan and implementation will start and must be continuous in order to be later felt at the bottom part of the society and to influence their mindsets.

        1. I still stand by my statement because you still want Pinoys to be mendicants and not to help themselves. So we should never care for the individual and go for government dependency.

          Something’s not right…

        2. LupatX is right. Government, and civil servants, are drawn from The People. If The People are a bunch of self-serving, entitled layabouts, then the government will obviously be composed of the same sort of people.

          There is no chance of Pinoys finding the right leader because what they ACTUALLY want is what they already are: a bunch of lazy scroungers living like animals. They vote for people who will let them continue in this way of life.

          The best possible outcome here is that the Philippines will be occupied by some foreign power and Filipinos will be enslaved. They might then start to value the freedoms that they have (or have lost).

          The WORST possible outcome is that the country will collapse under the weight of its own stupidity, which means a lot of people dying of starvation or violence.

        3. Marius,

          I don’t expect much from the government to be honest even now at the leadership of Duterte but the real solution lies everything in the government to change the culture together with the help of private sectors be it local or foreign that could introduce and implement drastic change. Drastic change because government have the power and capital which can help introduce new laws or repeal/amend the old laws and enforce them properly, change the standards of educational system to coerce students to value learning and growth, promote universal health care system because the current system sucks, build infrastructure, technology and propose innovation, and encourage citizens to embrace them all.
          This is already proven in history, Filipinos were barbaric before conquerors came. They had cultures different as compared today. But because of the introduction of religion, education, foreign language and technology of the foreigners to the Filipino minds, culture of Filipinos has evolved and Filipino leaders adopted. Culture is always changeable as time goes by. The Spaniards and Americans affected much of the mindsets of Filipinos on the way they live and the way they dress for example. Filipinos were too conservative during Spanish times but when Americans came they went to slight liberal to too liberal. Of course the 300 years of Spanish influence will never be easily gone especially in the old Filipino people of today, they still exert some kind of influence to the thinking of youth.

          If no government interventions or interference, the problems mentioned by ChinoF will never change. Most of them appear in provinces where lack of job opportunities and poverty are rampant and proper implementation of laws are almost non-visible where those attitudes are thriving especially in villages.

          I presumed at this time government know already what to do to improve the lives of Filipinos because of technology they can easily do research and access information what first world countries are doing. Government still are the ones of pioneering implementers of change. Ordinary Filipinos will follow whenever there is income and benefits of stable job available for each of them and that of course is the gateway of change other than the aggressive educational system, infrastructure and technology all by the initiatives of government. What LupatX said mendicant attitude is not an absolute truth at all. Otherwise there will be no independent professional Filipino doctors, engineers, businessmen and other skilled people that we see today if they depend only on the government to do all things. As I said government has to initiate and create the right environment. If government is useless then Filipinos attitude will never change because no top power will force them to change. You cannot expect them to chang on their own, there must be some powerful entities that would change their minds. Of course foreign powers are always welcome to help. But unlike before when conquerors ruled this country, Filipinos are presumed to be led by Filipinos because Philippines already has its sovereignty to decide its own fate.

        4. @Pinoy Citizen: the problem here is that Filipinos have gone past the point of no return. In other words, “you can’t get there from here”. You assume that the government wants a functioning, happy country. It does not. How do I know? Because it’s run by Filipinos, and Filipinos, mostly, want everyone else to be miserable.

          History is instructive here. The US looked a lot like the Philippines in its early days – full of corruption and violence. To a certain extent it still is. The difference is this: smart people stayed. Good people stayed. And ultimately there were more smart and good people than stupid and bad people, who wanted things to get better. This isn’t true in the Philippines. Those businessmen and engineers you mention are a tiny minority, and the government is only interested in their tax revenue, not their potential for building the country.

          Even IF you got a good government, you still have millions of people walking the streets who have no other goal except fighting, drinking, and making more stupid babies. You would have to literally put a third of the population in prison to restore social order, because those people are completely incapable of being normal human beings. They were raised like animals and will never be able to learn civilized behavour.

        5. Marius,

          You have some kind of hopelessnes there. The reason why the Philipines exactly is third world country because it is subject to evolution or revolution to change for the better as compared to US that already evolved because its democracy and government foundations are old. It has past its immaturity thru experience and been tested by so many times to still stand on its feet and be a powerful country. If the world ends today, Philippines has no more chance, but as long as the universe stays, Philippines still has a chance. How to determine this is to see where the country is heading whether it is heading to a failure or development depends upon the data presented by the experts. By the help of technology and its continuous dominance, many Filipino people will eventually be aware of what to do properly in their lives. They will certainly figure that out on their own by the help of government. But certainly under this present Duterte Administration, the Philippines is still not seeing the bright light. Duterte is still promoting croniysm, barbaric attitude and political vengeance among others which he should have never adopted in the first place from traditional politicians.

        6. @PinoyCitizen: I’m not being hopeless, merely realistic. I’ve seen too many examples of Filipino failure.

          As you pointed out, the present government is really no different to any preceding government. It is run by Pinoys, and therefore proposes Pinoy solutions to (perceived) Pinoy problems … which, more often than not, are actually symptoms, not the problem itself.

          Pinoy leaders refuse to look outside of their narrow viewpoint because they can’t. They’re too Proud. To admit that they don’t know everything would strike at the very core of their being.

          It will, unfortunately, take an outsider to fix this. My prediction is that China will try to frame the Philippines as a threat to international stability (which, in fact, it is) and use that as an excuse to install a “peacekeeping force”. This will then be used as a beachhead for an economic takeover and de facto colonization. If Xi manages to consolidate his stranglehold over the CCP, this could happen before 2030.

          Up to a point, that would be good for the country. The culture of violence, stupidity and laziness will not be tolerated, and that will fix a lot of problems. On the other hand, if you could choose your occupier, I personally wouldn’t choose China. It would be far better to call for international assistance now, while you can still do it on your own terms.

        7. Marius,

          I see your point there but Philippine constitution does not allow foreigners to have position in government especially the presidency so it is not possible to have an independent president who decides what is best for the country other than based on his friends, allies, campaign sponsors and family’s debt of gratitude just like what Duterte is doing nowadays.

          It can be frustrating at times but like I said, it is only at the top echelons of society that have the power to change things that can be felt in the whole country. Until they decide to change for the better, Filipinos failure will continue.

        8. @PinoyCitizen: indeed. The Constitution was written by Proud Pinoys, far too confident in their own abilities … or perhaps interested merely in a country “run like hell by Filipinos”, rather than the good of their citizens.

          The “Asian Tigers” all took the same route to success: they brought in lots of highly-qualified foreigners, and learned from them.

          Actually ordinary Filipinos hold all the power here. There is, as far as I’m aware, no constitutional restraint on Barangay-level officials hiring foreign employees or consultants. 20% of the tax take goes down to local level (and 100% of it gets wasted or stolen). In theory, they could bring in qualified foreigners to set up profitable local initiatives. But they won’t. Because Pinoy Pride.

          Sadly, then, all you can do is wait for the Chinese gunboats to sail into Manila Bay, and Chinese businessmen to march into Malacañang.

    3. “Filipinos are natural followers if we have..” IF FILIPINOS ARE NATURAL FOLLOWERS we wouldn’t be talking about this … PROVIDED … (see conditions below as quoted)

      “…if we have good but strict implementation of the laws, abundant jobs to fill in the gaps of the number of workers, good salaries enough to live decently and good educational standards capable of establishing morality, critical thinking and discipline to the Filipinos so that they will have the inspiration to eventually change and be better.”


      1. Hilarious but on point at the same time. Taking this excerpt from Grimwald’s article 2 years ago:

        What’s really sad is that a lot of Filipinos like to clamor for “change” and “discipline” even though not many want to make an effort to change and discipline themselves. Instead they go on and on like an out-of-control fire alarm shouting things they can barely even understand. And then, when things don’t go their way, when the changes require them to give up some of their enjoyable but clearly destructive habits, they cry bloody murder. This is one of the reasons the Philippines has always been locked in a state of mediocrity and a cycle of self-destruction.

        1. LupatX,

          These Filipinos can complain if they see change which are alien to them but they will eventually adopt to those change if these change introduced are laws that have to be followed by them. Just like how Americans forced us to adopt to their democracy and educational system which Filipinos though reluctant at first, had eventually embraced and followed. That is why as consistent to my arguments above, government has to take the initiatives and implementations.

        2. So what are you saying is over reliance on the government? BTW, government implementations are not enough if they can’t help themselves.

          Mahathir even criticized his own fellow Malays of their backwards attitude and thinking, yet he gave them a message of hope: “If we can change, we can be successful.”

          With our dysfunctional culture, try to tell them that and instead of listening, they will go on a emotional outburst. Trust me, I went there.

      2. Oratio,

        Yes, they are law breakers. That is why as I said to Robert Haington above, Filipinos need a lot of government interventions in their daily lives to correct those problems. And if those problems are corrected, then they will become later natural followers.

        1. They don’t need “government intervention”. They just need an honest armed policeman standing on every street corner. For about 30 years.

          Problem is, finding an honest man in the Philippines would be a bit of an uphill struggle.

          Mandatory contraception for everyone with an IQ under 80 would be a good idea too. Yes, giving implants to 20 million people would be difficult, but it would pay dividends.

    4. Looks the rest of the commenters have argued well that dependence on “leadership” actually falls flat. It may be a chicken and egg issue to some, but not to me. It’s really at the grassroots, because no matter where you look at it, all people who would enter the Philippine political arena and work their way up had exposure to the grassroots level in some way. And a leader, or more like a leader at the national level, won’t do much, because Filipinos hate following leaders like that anyway. That leader is so far removed. Leaders and their constituents at the smallest level, say clans and barangays, are the ones that need work. That’s why I agree with what Marius said above, the tribe is very efficient in enforcing its rules, because it’s really small, no wide swaths of bureaucracy to cut through like with a big national government. It could be a double edged sword though, so it has led to the cultural issues I described. So that’s still the level where change best start.

      1. ChinoF,

        No, your argument is still not possible that needed best change starts at the grassroots level. It should start at the top echelons of society. Those poweful individuals like the president who has the power, influence and resources can make things possible to happen. I mean, at the start of history, Ancient Filipino tribes were contented on their own lives. They have their own government, laws, culture and faith which they accepted and understood and thought as the best for them with the maximum knowledge at that time that they obtained and inherited from their forefathers, but, when the Spaniards came and the latter introduced Roman Catholic religion and their own government, Filipino culture and faith had changed because they embraced or they were forced to embrace them. Same goes to American educational system and democracy. Filipinos later adopted the culture of having education and democracy. Just see what the powerful people can do to influence the mindsets of Filipinos which if those Filipino tribes were not disturbed before, they will still be subjected by their own traditional rules as you can see on tribes people living in the jungle even at this modern age.

        Like I said culture evolves and powerful entities make them happen, not the ordinary and powerless people. If you allow them to figure how to change things on their own without someone’s leadership guidance, they won’t change at all.

        Fast forward to modern society, businessmen introduced mall culture to Filipinos which the latter did not think before it will become part of their lives. Government introduced transportation system where Filipinos adopted to their daily lives to go from one place to another. All that said, those who have the capital, power and influence can create culture where ordinary people from grassroots level will just learn how to adjust and adopt to it and make it part of their way day-to-day lives.

      2. @ChinF: Here is my take on this issue: look at China and the Chinese people. Its civilization is thousands of years old, rich history, it’s early technological contributions to the world is significant and yet only in this recent time it has started to take off, it’s economy projected to overtake the US soon. How did it manage to turn around?

        For all its faults, China being under communist leadership seemed to have found the right vessel to carry it forward. Yet people don’t have liberal culture nor the so called western freedom: the myopic lens that westerners want us to believe is a universal standard.

        On the other hand, we have democratic Taiwan: identical population, opposite form of government, almost the same result.

        Both China and Taiwan have strict implementation of their laws, their leaders excel in governance. This enabled their culture to develop a culture of conformity to their laws and authority.

        The clear contrast in PH culture is therefore a manifestation of the people’s disregard of the laws of the land. It has become a free flowing stream, it goes where there is least resistance- where no significant barrier exists. Over time, this becomes the norm for as long as it does not encounter resistance.

        I cannot stress enough the importance of leadership and implementation of laws in influencing the local culture.

      3. >> Leaders and their constituents at the smallest level, say clans and barangays, are the ones that need work.
        I wrote pretty much the same thing before realising you’d posted this.

        The tragedy is that it COULD be done, as I just described. It could be done quite independently of the government in Manila. But the fact is, the average Filipino doesn’t want it. I’ve had this discussion with a few of the layabouts in the flyblown village where I live. They’d LIKE to have things like garbage collection services, but they don’t want to lift a finger to make it happen. They’d rather the Barangay blow their entire budget on a fiesta than use it for something productive. Why? Because they’re Poor People, and the Poor Person’s main priority in life is to remain Poor.

        1. Another thing, just look at for example the degeneration of the manila bay and the pasig river. Before they were all clean and good looking but now you know already what happened. Of course, you can blame the people living there who caused the garbage piling up at the river and in the mainstream tributaries and the “comeback” of trash at the shore of manila bay every aftermath of a typhoon, but the thing is, these people did not stop these habits of throwing garbage there for many years already because they have found their place already there and they think government or law enforcers do not care about this issue. So can you expect these people to change? Of course you cannot. But government can do something to force them to either change or vacate the areas. See, this is an example of government having power and resources to make things happen. The solution can be done by the government with the help of private sector to relocate these people to other places and clean up manila bay and pasig river and see to it that no more build zone near manila bay and pasig river will ever happen again, which can only be done thru government’s effort of strict implementation of laws, allocation of ample budget and punishing the lawbreakers. While ordinary people at the grassroots level will just watch and follow.

  11. I guess the question all boils down to, what is it that you want your children you want them to be?
    To be an asset to society? or to be a burden to society?
    Why is this even a question? because there are Pilipinos who just don’t seem to get it that they are just being a burden to society. A burden(Pabigat sa buhay ng tao) is not a problem for heroes, martyrs, and saints, because their patience is limitless, but for the ordinary people, being only human, the patience is very much limited.

    Poverty is not a burden to society but there is a burden to society that creates poverty. So who and what are these burdens?

  12. Is dependence the problem or a symptom of something deeper?!

    Here, people’s clamor for support from the Government is seen as dependence; in other countries it’s part of the system labeled as Social Security!

    The Government depends on its people’s taxes for it to function and run the affairs of state matters. How do we appreciate the Government’s failure and inability to provide their part of the bargain for its citizenry?!

      1. Sarda: the Ph government LOVES dependency. Poverty and dependency are basically the same thing. If you can create poverty then you simultaneously create dependency. And creating ignorance is a good way to create poverty. Fortunately for the oligarchy, creating ignorance is very, very easy.

        Why create dependency? Because dependency means power over people’s lives. Ultimate power. Incidentally, it also gives complete control of the economy, and thus complete freedom to steal as much as the economy will bear. An economy with very few important actors is easy to control.

        As for “what kind of a government would do that?” , well, surely the answer is obvious. It’s the kind of government only Filipinos would choose.

        1. But if the oligarchy wants the people to become dependent on them then why don’t we just let them carry this burden of dependency? People would only be dependent on you if he/she knows that you have something like wealth that they can depend upon. If they don’t see this image of wealth in you, they will assume that you are just one of them and will just look for another to depend upon. I guess, simpleness and being ordinary is the solution I am suggesting but I think the very big problem is how hard it is to be looking “simple and ordinary” knowing the character of the Pilipinos, they just can’t help acting like rich people.

        2. >> But if the oligarchy wants the people to become dependent on them then why don’t we just let them carry this burden of dependency?

          Not really sure what you mean. From their point of view, the dependency of the masses is not a burden. Or at least not much of one. It’s a trade-off.

          Here’s the burden side: to get elected, the mayor promises that he’s going to do this and that project, support the poor, blah blah blah. It’s all just empty promises, but “the poor”, who are stupid and don’t understand how anything works, believe every word. When he gets elected, a whole bunch of voters queue up at his door asking for medicine for the carabao or a loan for rice planting. He gives everyone 500 pesos and tells them to get lost. They’re happy, because they’ve got some free money and they’ve mostly forgotten about his big promises. They’ll probably vote for him next time.

          Here’s the payoff: the mayor gets access to a vast stream of tax revenue, which he can divert into the pockets of all his friends and relations in construction (or whatever). All they have to do is build some dumbass projects to give the appearance of activity. It doesn’t matter if everything falls down 10 years later. No Filipino has ever seen something built properly, so they think this is normal. Those friends are relations are now in his debt, and must support him in various ways. What goes around comes around, especially in the Philippines.

          It’s all a big game. The poor have a very short attention span and are easy to manipulate. The rich only have to PRETEND to give out charity, and the dependent masses think that all’s right with the world.

      2. All governments are evil. But I wouldn’t classify the bunch of threatening parasites in the Manila Senate. The I.Q. level is very low but not as low as their respect for their fellow countrymen and countrywomen.

  13. I’m a Brit living in Laguna.
    1. While working in China I met a Filipina (4 kids…boyfriend ran away)
    2. I made a home for us in Laguna (Filipina house-seller pulled tricks so now the ownership is disputed)
    3. I have worked in China and had my home in Laguna.
    4.I provided for the Filipina and children’s every need.
    5. I got slightly ill and had to rest at home.
    6. She left. Left the house. 3 children stayed. I feed them.
    7. I put the 2 girls through college. The boy is too lazy and he doesn’t talk to me.
    8. I provided clothing, education, food etc. but they can’t even wash the dishes without being told.
    The boy (25? boy) has a girlfriend and a baby and a crappy job.
    The older girl is working but never seems to have any money.
    They spend longer ‘beautifying themselves than working. 8 hours at work and they think nothing else needs to be done.

    Maybe it’s just a uselessly stupid family that I got stuck with. But any glimmer of hope for progress quickly dims.
    Altruism does not exist. Empathy does not exist. Talking about God’s love exists but is not shown in basic ways. Everyone is chasing ‘like me…love me’ and become fools.
    Talk the talk but rearely walk the walk with an open heart. A lot of words but very, very little unconditional action.

  14. On tv, I saw an important ‘government’ man asking for an OFW to kiss him. I thought he should be kissing their feet for keeping the country going and paying his salary.

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