Why does communism continue to plague the Philippines? Its elements openly defy the government, incite unrest, and spread their obsolete ideology. Across the Philippines, communists infest Philippine university and college campuses, radicalise various “cause-oriented” groups and steal precious classroom hours that could have been used to educate Filipinos students. Communists are also behind labour unrest in many Filipino companies and the propagation of the notion that people are entitled to employment. This is communism, after all. It is an ideology that demands equality and implements egalitarianism by force. Under a communist regime, people’s right to “freedom” goes out the door in favour of the idea that you are only as free to pursue wealth as your comrades’ ability to find work or partake of government dole-outs.
This is, after all, a system of government and economics that denies human nature rather than work within its context. Thus, whereas capitalism has, in practical terms, existed as an economic system since the dawn of civilisation, the communist society envisioned by Karl Marx is so unnatural that it will require a period of “revolutionary” transition before the utopian “classless” state is achieved. Vladimir Lenin, leader of the Bolshevik Revolution that created the Soviet Union which he then became the first leader of described this period as one where a “suppression of the exploiting minority by the exploited majority” will be effected after which “equality” will presumably reign supreme. And under what mechanism would this transition be overseen? Why under no less than a “dictatorship of the proletariat”. Here, the “proletariat” are the workers’ classes — people who “derive income solely from their labour”.
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We can see here that communism is not only obsolete, it is an ideology that insults the human spirit and is an affront to self-determination. It is an idea attractive to people who are unable to or, worse, unwilling to compete. Perhaps this is the reason why communism still exists in the Philippines — because competing and developing one’s self or organising people into groups capable of competing at scale is not a key feature of the Filipino cultural character. The idea of a “dictatorship of the proletariat” appeals to a people whose most valuable export is human labour. Makes sense now, doesn’t it? Rather than see life as a competition for scarce resources and opportunities, proponents of communism see the present world order as one rigged against their needs. Under a communist regime, allocation of resources, after all, is based on need.
The way communism is being interpreted and promoted by Filipino “activists” is just as confused. This is not to mention the fact that virtually every “activist” organisation in most Philippine educational institutions had been infiltrated by communists. Thus any organisation that, by name or creed, is engaged in one form of social advocacy or another be it “women’s issues”, student politics, or campus “journalism” is infested with communists. Because of this mishmash of people focused on disparate “activist” goals cobbled together into a “front” to arbitrarily resist any government programme, it is impossible to achieve any form of consistency. For example, communists are currently allied with the Philippine Opposition which, in turn, is led by the Liberal Party which is a bastion of rule by elite business and feudal oligarchs, specifically the Aquino-Cojuangco clan. This alliance alone makes the communist goal of revolting, massacring the aristocracy, and establishing a “dictatorship of the proletariat” an utter impossibility.
The short of it is that communism is a parasitical system of thought that clings onto Philippine society by taking advantage of Filipinos’ habitual laziness in thinking. Their claims and assertions simply don’t add up. Their front organisations in university campuses may be the butts of many jokes but remain sources of warm bodies to fill their street rallies nonetheless. The continued existence of the New People’s Army (NPA) as a terrorist arm disguised as that “revolutionary” force that supposedly will pave the way for the rise of that “dictatorship of the proletariat” is proof that communists continue to successfully con Filipinos into tolerating their crooked activities.
Communism cannot be crushed by killing members of the NPA. There are just too many gullible young Filipinos coming into the educational system that ensure a fat pipeline of conscripts for this “army”. The key to crushing communism is for Filipinos to become smarter and more adept at spotting the glaring contradictions and inconsistencies in the way communists conduct themselves and their activities and to challenge the slogans being chanted by participants in communist-organised street rallies and communist “influencers” in social media. The core of this challenge lies in the idea that there is no such thing as a state where “equality” rules simply because human beings are not created equal.
Humanity is diverse in character as many liberals ironically point out. Talent and skill are not equally-distributed across societies. To force people to be “equal” is as absurd as feeling entitled to “fairness”. Much of what is important and valuable in life are things one must compete for. This is the inconvenient truth many Filipinos are unwilling to embrace. This unwillingness to handle this truth in the Filipino is what communists are exploiting to their ends. Only when Filipinos learn that anything worth having requires one to compete for it, will communism truly disappear from Philippine society. It is all up to us to decide which story to subscribe to — the true story or the quaintly-entertaining fiction of the Communist Party of the Philippines.
benign0 is the Webmaster of GetRealPhilippines.com.