The Social Theory of Everything

narra residence hall

It’s gone now–Narra Ressidence Hall, the university dormitory where I stayed  while I was at UP Diliman doing my undergraduate degree.  I chose UP partly because of my father’s encouragement.  He wanted me to become a scholar and continue his unfinished work on the sociology of poverty.  He chose marriage over graduate studies; he was not able to pursue his academic interest.  Like my father, I was interested to know more about poverty, but I wanted to study something bigger and grander.  Right after high school, I began wondering about chaos and order–why there were problems around me and what should be their solutions.  It was at Narra where I began working on my theory.

They say UP Diliman is a macrocosm of Philippine society.  I can’t really say it was during my time, considering the numbers of rich kids around and the arrays of cars in the parking lots.  The chic coños outnumbered the class-conscious activists.  The rest were nonchalant and middle class.  UP, as a whole, was not University of the Poor.  Narra, however, was different.  It was noisy,  busy, and crazy.   It was a perfect fit to what was the Philippines then–still unpredictably chaotic after decades of Martial Law and years of failed military coups d’état that followed.  It seemed to me that the poorest and the most rambunctious male students of UP Diliman stayed in that dormitory, where chaos ruled and order became noticeable only when nobody was awake.  Loud arguments happened inside the rooms and in the open hallways we called “bridge”.  Every issue, from NBA Finals to tuition fee increase, was contentious.

Narra was old and dilapidated.  It was a dormitory exclusively for men, but we often saw females using our nasty bathrooms in the middle of the night or early in the morning. Some residents drank and gambled like such vices were not prohibited–well, I did not get a dormitory handbook.  Sex happened too.  I couldn’t tell though what kind.  There were gay men around and one or two transvestites.  They would join us when we watched porn in the TV room.  When it came to sex, nobody could outperform our famous dorm mate, a UP professor in his forties or fifties.  Although he looked horrible, he was a sex fiend.  I wondered if those women inside his room were his students and desperate to get passing grades.  I didn’t think philosophy courses were that difficult.  

In my second year in the dormitory, physical upgrades, staff changes, and new policies were done and implemented.  I saw some improvements in the rooms, in the lobby, and even in the demography of Narra residents.  The  management painted the walls, fixed the gates, and tightened the security.  They kicked out the overstaying troublemakers and the delinquent residents.  We even had a curfew, and women were no longer allowed to go beyond the lobby. The mannish security guard we called “Manang” memorized our faces like we were criminals.  On-time payment of dorm fee was imposed.  We could not openly drink or gamble.  The fully made up dorm manager, an ageing woman who could pass either as a prison warden or a retiring prostitute, would even ask chess players if betting was involved.  The noisy gossipers and those who had secret transactions in the hallways were lucky because they would know when she was approaching.  Her headache-inducing perfume was a foul warning.  Yes, she was strict, but there was order.

What happened at Narra during that time gave me an idea on how to transition from chaos to order–get rid of the troublesome elements.  It was that simple.  Later my idea evolved into maintaining order, and it was about solving problems and establishing networks.  I did write a paper about it in one of my social science classes.  My Marxist professor must have been shocked by my theoretical framework.  I appropriated all theories I knew to explain mass media.  I combined liberation theology with individualist anarchism and the rest of the staple theories widely used and talked about at UP.  I got a C–3.0 in our grading scale.  She could not understand my idea of a social theory of everything.  She did not buy my argument that poverty can only be explained thoroughly if all theories are appropriated and linked.  How can class (Marxism) or gender (Feminism) explain the seasonal price increase of goods and services that overburdens the poor when storm, typhoon, drought, climate have neither class nor gender?

I graduated a semester early and went abroad.  I had forgotten my theory.  I could have written a dissertation out of it, had I not dropped out from a graduate program.  I got tired of reading and learning at that point.  I just wanted to make money.  I’m still hopeful though that one day I can go back to school and continue my father’s unfinished ideas about poverty.  Nowadays my theory has many names in the academe.  They call it systems theory, network theory, or general theory.  I have yet to read a book or a paper though that appropriates all known theories to explain a single issue.  Can both Socialism and Capitalism be frameworks of a solution to poverty?  I think so.

I write about this theory in this post to explain the evolution of my model: a web or network of solutions to a problem.  My intent for this blog is to apply that model in all social, cultural, economic, political problems we have in the Philippines.  I also want to express that there is a set of methods I follow when I think of solutions.  First, those solutions can coexist in a web or network. Second, the aim of every solution is order.  Third, the failure of one solution is not the failure of all.  Fourth, all solutions should be organic–open for improvement, growth, extension, and modification.  Last, every solution must be sound and solid if put through theoretical, factual, logical, empirical, comparative, ethnographic, qualitative, and quantitative analyses.  I just don’t propose solutions without thinking if they are, at least, possible or doable.  Whether they are feasible still depends on the academic efforts of the concerned professionals or the investigative studies of the interested departments of the Philippine government.  What I’m trying to do here is offer alternatives.

In my next post, I’ll talk more about the theory in relation to system and network considering chaos and order.

Mt. Pinatubo Coffee, Anyone?

san miguel

I’ve been nursing this cold for almost a week now.  I could not write with my stuffy nose bothering me.  I guess over-thinking is not good for my health, so I’ve decided that from now on I’ll write a new post every other day.  Maybe doing something such as reading these novels on my desk can break the monotony in my daily life.  I’ve also decided that I won’t get rid of my rhetorical style that appears in my writings once in a while.  I want my blog to have a heart.  I don’t want to bore my readers with straight technical stuff.  My writing is already dry; demonstrating my seriousness and intensity, maybe, can add some nuances.

Let’s use again the list from Prof. Roland Simbulan’s paper:

1)   Clark Air Base                                      –      4,400   hectares

2)   Subic Naval Base                                 –      6,658   hectares

3)   O’Donnel Transmitter Station              –      1,755   hectares

4)   San Miguel Communication Station     –     1,100   hectares

5)   Capas Naval Transmitter Station        –          356   hectares

6)   John Hay Air Station                            –          227   hectares

7)   Wallance Air Station                            –          202   hectares

For this post, I’ll talk about how the government can create an agriculture-based corporation in San Antonio, Zambales, where the abandoned San Miguel Communication Station of the U.S. Navy is located.  Our crop of choice this time is coffee, the widely traded commodity in the world after oil.  I’ll still follow the same model I used in my last post: a web of solutions to a problem or a network of enterprises of an agriculture-based corporation.  In my future post, I’ll try to explain this model, which I consider to be the application of my “Social Theory of Everything,” a theory I began thinking about while I was still in college living in a crazy dormitory called Narra Residence Hall.

The toughest thing in writing posts like this is the unavailability of data.  I don’t know the soil composition, formation, moisture, nutrients in the former naval base in San Miguel.  So I’ll compare locations again.  Did the previous volcanic eruptions around Java make the island suitable for planting coffee?  Is the island’s unique soil the reason why Java coffee is distinctly delicious?  A journal I read before, which I couldn’t find now, said something about the dominance of volcanic ash in the Javanese soil.  Is it safe to deduce that maybe the eruption of Mt. Pinatubo in 1991 also enriched the affected areas of Zambales that included Barangay San Miguel?  I’ll leave that to the government’s soil scientists.

If San Miguel is suitable for coffee plantation, the government should create, again, a network of farming, manufacturing, and hospitality enterprises in the area.  Doing such project can formally integrate Aetas into commercial agriculture, a reliable source of income for them. The government has to address the economic problems of this poor ethnic group that can only be solved with permanent employment or livelihood.  It can also provide needed jobs in Central Luzon, whose unemployment rate in January 2013 was 9.1–yes, that’s high. I’m one of  those who believe that if we want to solve our unemployment problem we need to  develop the rural Philippines.  Lastly, the government can also fix the infrastructure and facilities abandoned by the Americans and turn them  into income-generating assets.  The land in San Miguel must make money in order to create jobs.

If a survey is conducted, I’m pretty sure coffee consumption in the Philippines is up.  Coffee shops are everywhere like they are the new “sari-sari” stores.  Call center workers rely on coffee to be able to work at night.  The young and chic hold tall coffee cups like they are trendy.  There’s a coffee culture that is going on in our country.  Obviously, there’s a domestic demand  that should  be targeted.  As the spending ability of the middle class improves, so does its wants and taste. Coffee of high quality that are usually reserved  for the rich should be made available for all.  Let’s move on from the generic coffee powder  and from the awful instant Nescafe.

How’s coffee for export?  Exporting so-so beans used as fillers for blends is not really a profitable idea.  Many countries are doing it already.  I hope the National Greening Program of the Department of Environment and Natural Resources, in which 86,000 hectares are allotted for coffee farming all over the Philippines, plans to cultivate high-quality varieties. I don’t know if the program involves the expertise of UP Los Banos agriculturists and scientists.  Let’s just cross our fingers and hope they plant good varieties of Arabica, the most in demand in the world.

The good option for the land in San Miguel is to cultivate two varieties of coffee–Arabica and Robusta–that should be rare and delicious and of high quality.  Most five-star international hotels I visited or stayed at served the rare kinds of coffee that tasted unbelievably good.  I know it’s not easy to penetrate the coffee global market because the Philippines is not yet a brand for coffee unlike Colombia, Ethiopia, and Jamaica.  In the future, we can rely on quality and pricing if we want our coffee products to be seen as good alternatives to the famous, expensive varieties.  For the sake of marketing, we must cultivate varieties of coffee in one area and attach their unique tastes and qualities to that same area where they grow.  Java coffee is grown in Java, Indonesia.  Does Mt. Pinatubo coffee sound good?  Maybe Zambales coffee?  Or San Miguel?

Again, let’s put the scientists of UP Los Banos to work.  Let them come up with the best Robusta and Arabica coffee varieties in terms of yield, taste, size, and immunity from leaf diseases.   Let’s make sense of these coffee varieties; Vietnamese coffee is mainly Robusta, and Colombian coffee is Arabica.   The Colombian is far more in demand and superior.  Our Barako coffee is Liberica,  which is not as globally popular as the other two.  Imagine if we cultivate high-quality varieties of Robusta and Arabica.  We cannot only market two products, but we can also mix the two and we’ll have a high-quality blend.  We need our scientists to help us achieve this dreamy goal.

Manufacturing facilities that make coffee drinks and sweets and pack and can coffee beans and powder can also generate jobs.  We have lots of internationally-trained chefs now who are into mixology (drinks) and confectionery (candies).  We should tap their talents before we lose them to other countries.  I may sound naive here.  Trust me; I’ve been all over, and being a coffee connoisseur I’ve tried many coffee products.  I believe we can produce marketable products.  Shipping green beans to coffee companies is the lazy way of doing it.  We can export some of our raw materials, but not everything.  Let’s be creative.

Hospitality is about hotel, restaurant, and other establishment for leisure.  The former naval base in San Miguel has a golf course, accommodation facilities, and other amenities the government can turn into a hotel resort.  It’s not that far from the beach.  Besides water sports and activities, hiking, trekking, and mountain-climbing are some of the adventures that can be included in the development of eco-tourism in the area.  We should maximize the value of the place and do it in a sustainable way to produce as many jobs as possible.

To recap, we have a make-believe coffee plantation with food manufacturing plants and a hotel resort, but we only have 1,100 hectares, of which 60 hectares are for the golf course.  My proposal is only for the conversion of the former naval base in San Miguel.  If the soil in the area produces varieties of coffee that are worth marketing globally, it’s not bad to encourage other farm owners to plant those same coffee varieties and make Zambales the coffee capital of the Philippines. Coffee brokers, traders, and buyers can come to the plantation in San Miguel, stay at the resort, play golf, check coffee products, try moutain-climbing, taste the Mt. Pinatubo coffee brew, and spend time at the beach.  They can do business while on a pleasurable vacation.

But first, let’s find those rarest and tastiest coffee beans.

Tea: Agricultural, Manufacturing, and Hospitality Jobs for Filipinos


While reading some news Online, I came across a name that sounded familiar.  He was my former dorm mate in college.  I knew him as a brilliant but humble guy.  For some reason, I associated him with the red leather-covered couch in the lobby of our old dormitory.   Was it burgundy and faux?  It could be his favorite place to study or relax late at night–when I would negotiate with our loud security woman to let me go out for a bottle of gin.  He deserves where he is now.  This post is about land use and conversion.  The guy in the news works for the Bases Conversion and Development Authority (BCDA), a government-run corporation.  Sorry, I can’t mention his name; I might be accused of name-dropping.

To be honest, I have no idea if there are still idle lands available for development inside the former U.S. military bases.  I also don’t know if the government has already a policy in place regarding the uses of those lands.  Are they for rent or for sale? Are those lands already rented or sold? I don’t know.  So allow me to assume in this post and use some numbers from the 2008 paper of Prof. Roland Simbulan of the University of the Philippines.  The following lands were available for conversion and development in 1992 when the base conversion law (RA 7227) took effect:

1)   Clark Air Base                                      –      4,400   hectares

2)   Subic Naval Base                                 –      6,658   hectares

3)   San Miguel Communication Station     –       1,100   hectares

4)   O’Donnel Transmitter Station              –       1,755   hectares

5)   Capas Naval Transmitter Station        –          356   hectares

6)   John Hay Air Station                            –          227   hectares

7)   Wallance Air Station                            –          202   hectares

Land Total                                                  –     14,698   hectares

At first glance, I can sense the commercial value of Clark and Subic.  It’s appropriate that they are economic zones now.  In my future post, I’ll share my ideas on how these economic zones can be turned into industrial capitals–like the Silicon Valley of America (California) or the Silicon Plateau of India (Bangalore)–necessary in turning the Philippines into a knowledge society that heavily relies on information, science, engineering, technology, and design.  For this post, let me focus on the three smaller bases and on how to maximize their uses with job creation as my target goal.

I’ll say this again: the Philippine government should make employing jobless Filipinos as a matter of public policy–that means all government programs, projects, investments, spending, laws, policies, departments, agencies should give job creation a priority.  In developing the former military bases, for example, the first question that should be asked is whether such project can create a significant number of jobs.  Lawmakers should ask themselves too if their bills can create jobs.  All government spending should create jobs.  If we won’t control this unemployment problem early on, it will be the economic downfall of the Philippines in the very near future.

The unemployment rate of 7.5% last quarter should really alarm our president.  The number of jobless Filipinos is increasing, and that’s the trend.  It will continue to increase when the typhoon season comes or if the volatile situation in the Middle East worsens. Yes, the significant job loss in the agricultural industry has surprised me.  Maybe the regions hit by typhoon Pablo are still recovering, and the farmers cannot go to work as of yet because the farms are still not operational.  Maybe a lot of farmers are now jobless because the farms that employed them before are either closed or abandoned.

Our family farm hasn’t been operational since the typhoon damaged most of the coconut trees.  I’m not sure what our workers are doing now. I don’t think there are other jobs waiting for them.  I have encouraged them to go into commercial fishing since the Pacific Ocean is just nearby.  I already sent them money for the construction of their big boats.  I hope the government is awake and listening.  The job losses in the agricultural industry last quarter should give President Aquino a push to start developing a sustainable agricultural industry that can withstand natural calamities or that is far from the typhoon areas.

It seems to me that the flow of investment in agriculture is the lowest.  The growth rate in that sector last quarter was only 0.8% from 0.4% the previous quarter.  I find this disheartening.  Less growth rate means less new jobs, and we have 624,000 unemployed agricultural workers. Since Filipino investors are keeping away their money from the sector that mostly employs the poor, the government has to find a meaningful solution to the low growth rate and to the significant job loss in the agricultural industry.  As usual, I have a suggestion.  Why don’t the government create agriculture-based corporations?

Let’s begin with tea.  Lands that are cool, moist, elevated or those near the water that can moderate heat and create humidity are the better areas for planting tea. Since I have no geological data to present here, I’ll just compare countries.  Sri Lanka, one of the leading exporters of tea, and the Philippines share the same plant hardiness zone–an indicator of a plant’s ability to survive based on its minimum survival temperature. If tea plants can survive in Sri Lanka, it can also in the Philippines.  The former, like the islands in our country, is also surrounded by water.

I’ll leave it to the government agriculturists and geologists to determine if the annual rainfall, soil acidity, moisture, and humidity in these areas–Capas, Baguio City (John Hay), and San Fernando (Wallance)–are suitable for tea plantations.  I believe they are, and I think we should develop those former bases into agricultural, manufacturing, and hospitality centers.  Filipino experts should also study if rows and rows of tea plants can withstand storms and typhoons or even control erosion and flooding.  I know it takes four to six years for new tea plantations to be fully operational, but at least we are doing something in the present and for the future.  Besides, to start tea plantations, farmers, scientists, agriculturists, geologists, landscape planners, civil engineers, sustainability consultants, and tea experts are immediately needed, and that’s instant job creation almost.

Tea of a high quality is in demand.  Let’s target the rich tea-consuming ASEAN countries like Singapore, Malaysia, and Thailand.  Since we don’t have enough tracts of land for tea, we should only plant the best varieties for high-end consumption and the most in demand among the expensive ones–making the expensive affordable is a good global marketing strategy we can adopt in the future.  We need to put the scientists of UP Los Banos to work.  I believe in their abilities and ingenuities.  A tea laboratory can also employ UP’s brightest.  Our best food technologists and even internationally-trained chefs can help in product research and manufacturing.  We don’t have to export most of our raw materials. We should process some into marketable products.

There’s a culinary demand for green tea powder and flavor extract.  We can make tea juices and energy drinks.  There are even tea-flavored candies and cookies now.  Placing the agricultural industry beside the manufacturing industry in one area is a very good idea.  Transportation cost will go down.  Tea farmers can interact with food manufacturers.  It’s time to professionalize agricultural jobs.  Filipino farm workers who are mostly poor, I believe, should have “eight-to-five” jobs.  They should have sources of income that are reliable.  Seasonal sharecropping can be exploitative and susceptible to labor and agrarian politics.

Also, a tea plantation in Camp John Hay of Baguio City can be an additional landscape in the already beautiful green city.  Having another attraction is not bad.  Tea plantations all over the world attract tourists and visitors.   The Charleston Tea Plantation of South Carolina has guided group tours, special tasting events, and even a festival.  Private events–such as corporate meetings, family outings, and weddings–are held in the plantation.  There are also hotels nearby, and the plantation even has a gift shop. Tea can also generate hospitality jobs.

I urge the guy working for BCDA to study my proposal.  I believe any piece of land but the residential should have multiple sustainable uses to maximize benefits and yes, job creation.  Again, that’s my example of a web of solutions to a problem.  It saddens me though to think of the time and the opportunities we have wasted and lost.  We’ve already had a bunch of overpaid executives since 1992 when the base conversion law took effect, but they could only think of selling or renting out idle lands owned by the government.  If you sell a government land to a property developer, it does not generate permanent jobs.  Yes, construction workers are able to work, but when they are done they’re gone.  Maybe the developer will hire a couple of gardeners to maintain the landscape of his subdivision, but that’s it.

Also, if investors don’t want to develop our agricultural industry, it is the job of the government to do it.  We have a lot of government-owned corporations; we should check if they’ve created many jobs.  Performance audits, not only in profit growth but also in job growth, should be done often.  If their job creation records are dismal, the government should force them to diversify and invest in agriculture.  Are there government-owned and controlled agricultural corporations that employ many people?  I’m not sure.  If there are none, I say: change the course and solve our unemployment problem by developing the agricultural industry.  Create a network of agricultural, manufacturing, and hospitality enterprises in one area and do the same in several places.  Hit three birds with one stone and repeat the same strategy multiple times, and that is efficiency, Mr. President.

Countering Islamism and Islamists in Muslim Mindanao


What is Islamism?  Who are the Islamists?  We need to talk about this militant Islamic ideology, considering that Muslim countries all over are slowly becoming Islamist every day.  Egypt, Tunisia, Iraq, and Indonesia are some of those countries that are embracing a  kind of Islam that is puritanical and intolerant.  In Indonesia, Christians are feeling unsafe, sexual minorities are hunted, and atheists are hiding.  Was Indonesia like that a decade ago?  I don’t think so.

Purist Indonesian Islamists are now killing other Muslims too.  They harass and abuse those who practice a different kind of Islam.  Ismaili, Ahmadi, and even Sufi Muslims are being persecuted as I write this post.  This is not fear mongering; the Philippines is in the global jihad map of the Islamists.  Should we learn a lesson from the experience of Indonesia now or later when it’s all too late?   Now Mr. President, are you sure with your Bangsamoro project?

Islamism is the religion-based political and militant ideology of the extremist, fundamentalist, and jihadist Muslims.  Not all Muslims are Islamists, but almost all Muslims are silent about Islamism and Islamists in their midst.  I view such silence as their passive and tacit support.  Osama bin Laden and the Janjalani brothers of Abu Sayyaf were Islamists, and that makes their supporters Islamists too.  Let’s simplify things.

*  Islam – Religion of Muslims

         *  Sunni Islam – Major Branch of Islam

                   *  Islamism – Islamic Political Ideology  

                            *  Wahhabism – Saudi Arabia – Finance and Scholarship

                            *  Salafism – Egypt – Movement and Organization

                            *  Talibanism – Afghanistan – Training and Operation

                                     *   Al-Qaeda – Afghanistan –  Global Base

                                                *   Jemaah Islamiah – Indonesia – Southeast Asian Cell

                                                           *  Abu Sayyaf – Philippines – Local Islamist Group

The Islamist network is more complicated than that, but that step by step categorization only includes the major players for simple presentation and easy understanding.  The Wahhabis finance jihads and educate or indoctrinate jihadis.  Jihad here is the violent and deadly kind not the soft inner struggle.  Abdurajik Abubakar Janjalani, the founder of Abu Sayyaf, went to Saudi Arabia in the eighties to study, and he got some funding from the group of bin Laden and used it  to organize his group in Basilan in 1991–yes, I do read the biographies and the obituaries of notorious individuals.  Bin Laden was from Saudi Arabia, and he was part of the Wahhabi groups that globally finance jihads.

The Philippine government should acknowledge that the money of the Wahhabis and the global movement of the Salafis have already reached our shores, so the common people will know and wake up.  It should also reveal that there are Filipino Muslims who go to Afghanistan or Pakistan for training in terrorism and there are terrorist foreigners from Southeast Asian countries who are already in Mindanao.  The government must tell the Filipino people that the Muslim insurgency in Mindanao is now dangerously ideological and well-supported by foreign Islamist groups.  We can no longer deny the existence of Islamism in our country.

Why these Islamists think the Philippines is an Islamic land is beyond me.  Do they think the early settlers of the archipelago now called the Philippines were already Muslims even  before the arrival of Karim ul-Makhdum in 1380?  The ancestors of the Filipino Muslims of today were animist lumads or natives who prayed to anitos or spirits before the Islamization of the region now called Muslim Mindanao.  Filipino historians and anthropologists should really come out and speak up, so the myth that Mindanao belongs to the Muslims can be corrected.  Had Makhdum not arrvied, we would not have this Muslim Mindanao conflict.   Tausugs, Yakans, Bajaos, Maranaos, and Maguindanaos would have been just another indigenous or ethnic groups in Mindanao like the non-Muslim Bagobos, Mandayas, and Mansakas of the Davao region.

Besides military response, how can we counter Islamism in Mindanao?  I think we can use the Philippine Constitution.  It says that every Filipino has the right to education.  The Supreme Court has to define “education”.   Do memorizing Quran and reading the biography of the Prophet Muhammad (Sira) everyday and all year round qualify as education?  We should learn from the Pakistani experience.  Islamists in Pakistan use madrassas–religious schools–as recruitment centers and training grounds for future Pakistani jihadis.

To force Muslim children in Mindanao to study Islam should be declared unconstitutional.  One of the reasons why I support Charter Change is my belief that freedom of thought and right to knowledge should be added to our constitution. We also need the help of the Department of Science and Technology (DOST) in this regard.  Dr. Josette Biyo, when are you going to open the Philippine Science High School in the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (ARMM)?  We need more Muslim youth who are capable of thinking critically, rationally, and logically.  We need them to counter the growing numbers of Islamist-indoctrinated zombies.

Another thing that can counter Islamism is what I call ideological capitalism.  If Islamism is the only ideology that dominates the Muslim discourse in Mindanao, that’s ideological monopoly, a dangerous situation in which Islamists can freely preach violence and do what they want with the impressionable minds of the Muslim youth.  Muslim Mindanao has to have a bunch of ideologies to drown the loud noises of those Islamists.  Filipino intellectuals should support Muslim feminists, Muslim socialists, Muslim freethinkers, Muslim rationalists–if they exist in Muslim Mindanao.

The Philippine media can help too by airing programs about the Islamic countries where Sharia Law is implemented and the  strictest form of Islam is practiced, so the Filipino Muslims will be better informed with issues and events happening in those countries.   For Example, all TV stations should broadcast this news: “Taliban Beheads Two Boys in Southern Afghanistan.”  Filipino Muslims should know the violent truth about Islamists, so they can decide whether beheadings, stonings, hangings done in the name of their religion are the daily realities they want to have.  They need to know what Islamism is, so they can choose well whether to embrace the foreign or the local and whether to practice the extreme or the moderate–if such thing exists.  Let me quote what Amir Baraguir of Cotabato City said in 2003:

 “We might wake up one day and find that the rigid foreign-influenced Islamic beliefs have replaced our own distinct cultural identity.”

I think we should listen.

Is Peace Possible In Mindanao?


Zorro’s photo is no longer on the header because I want to freely write anything that comes to mind.  I might write something that will offend people, and I don’t want them to hurt an innocent guy.  Please don’t think of the new photo as my representation of Zorro.  I just like the image–even gorillas think.  I also edited my very first post in which I explained the title of this blog and revealed some information about myself.  I hope they’re enough for you to know where I’m coming from and why I have this intense desire to share my ideas I believe our country needs.

Let me say this first: I am no Islamophobe.  I had brilliant Muslim friends and dorm mates in college.  I enjoyed their company.  I admired their intellect.  I like their culture and some aspects of their religion, but I can’t swallow the Islamist politics of some.  I also don’t believe in religion, so I’m neither Catholic nor Protestant. I’m humbled though by the most powerful spiritual entity or force I can never fathom.  I need to believe in that spiritual entity or force to make sense of the beautiful things around me.  I am spiritual but not religious. So this post has no tinge of religious prejudice and intolerance.  I treat the issue according to how I see it using historical and current facts and cases.

Islam is a religion.  Whether it’s a religion of peace is debatable.  Muslim Mindanao hasn’t been peaceful since my parents were children until now that they have grandchildren.  I believe it will never be peaceful because the core of Islamic faith is violence.  When I read the sacred texts of Islam–Quran, Haddith, Sunnah, and Sira–I felt like I was watching a historical movie.  The setting was in the Arabian desert, the time was during the Middle Ages, and the theme was violence.  I couldn’t believe I was reading the theological foundations and bases of a fast-growing religion in the twenty-first century.

I don’t really wonder why there are Muslims who are capable of beheading, stoning, hanging, blowing up, and maiming people. The violence in the Islamic texts that they read or encounter early in their lives is just too much.  If we can blame the violent media for the violence we see and experience in our society, why can’t we blame the Islamic texts for the violent acts and barbaric behaviors of Muslim extremists, fundamentalists, and jihadists?  When a child is reared in intense hatred towards “infidels”–non-Muslims or non-believers of Islam–of course, he’ll grow up a hateful person ready to kill those he hates. If Muslim children are forced to study or read the Islamic texts, they are, in a way, also forced to learn violence.

If you bombard someone with Communist and Socialist texts, manifestos, and exhortations and he passively accepts and swallows them like they are the sources of enlightenment or nirvana, chances are that he will  join an anti-capitalist and anti-imperialist armed struggle or a militant people’s movement like the New People’s Army (NPA).  I saw many of that kind when I was in college.  Also, anyone who grows up in an environment where violence is the order of the day or the reality of everyday life has the tendency to be violent himself.   That environment and socialization affect personality and behavior is a fact.     .

I believe all Muslims are prone to commit violence against Non-Muslims. Such violence against non-believers may not yet be a big problem in Mindanao, but it doesn’t mean it won’t be in the future.  The thing to remember here is that killing “kafirs”—another term for “infidels”–is encouraged in the sacred texts of Islam, and the violent form of jihad–the religious duty of every Muslim to fight against the enemies of Islam–is valued and encouraged with concepts of martyrdom and paradise in the hereafter or afterlife.  Anyone exposed to such hateful, intolerant mental conditioning is a latent jihadist.  You also have to consider that “enemies of Islam” is a wide generalization. They can be non-Muslims, ex-Muslims, non-Islamic states, or non-supporters of Islam.

If some of the Filipino Muslims are giving the Philippine government a political headache, it’s because the government is ruled and dominated by “infidels”.  It’s not about economic and political freedoms.  The government has already given in to their clamor for a Muslim autonomous region, yet there are still armed Islamists and dangerous jihadists in Mindanao and kidnappings by Abu Sayyaf and bombings by Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) still happen.  It’s not really about empowering the Muslims economically and politically, is it?  What have they done with the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (ARMM)?  It is nothing but a failure, yet the government wants to reward the Muslims with Bangsamoro, a bigger ARMM with more autonomy and independence and more political  and economic power.  Wake up, Filipinos.  Take note, Philippine government.

Even if the government gives the whole of Mindanao to the Filipino Muslims, still there will be no peace.  Their next target will be the entire Philippines. This is not about an issue of territory but of religious struggle—to Islamize the Philippines and the entire Filipinos.  I know that won’t happen, but that is their goal. So, conflict will never stop.  I even read some posts Online asking why only parts of Mindanao and why not the entire Philippines.  Is this Islamization of democratic states a trend in many parts of the world?  Germany, France, and England have already taken notice of such trend.

Have you ever wondered why the Muslims in Sabah who have ties to Mindanao are not interested to arm themselves and fight against the Malaysian government although the claim of the Royal House of Sulu over Sabah is more solid than the claim of the Filipino Muslims over Mindanao?  The Sabah issue doesn’t involve a religious zeal for jihad, and that’s the huge difference.  Malaysia is somewhat an Islamic country already dominated by Muslims, and fighting against the governments of “infidels” is much better because of the godly rewards.  Imagine if it were ruled mostly by Jewish or Christians, would the Muslims of Mindanao stand idle while their territorial claim was denied and their fellow Muslims were massacred in Sabah?

The Mindanao issue is rather comparable to the Arab-Israeli conflict.  Even if Israel were to give most of its territory to the Palestinians, still there would be no peace in that area of Middle East.   If you look beyond the surface, like what’s happening in Mindanao, the territorial claim is just a facade of the real struggle: religious extremism.  I wonder if the Philippine government has already realized that it has been a victim of a political  extortion perpetrated by the closet Islamists and jihadists  in Mindanao, Moro National Liberation Front (MNLF) and Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF).

The aim of this post is to remind the  government that it has to  adopt a new set of paradigms in dealing with Muslim Mindanao.  First, it has to recognize that the concern of the Muslims in Mindanao is religious not political or economic and not territorial or ethnic.  Second,  Islam is not a religion of peace.  Third, the goal of Islamist and  jihadist groups is to Islamize the world and impose Sharia Law all over the globe. Fourth, there are no moderate Muslims but Muslims who are not yet fully indoctrinated with Islamism, jihadism, and extremism.  Fifth, integration not segregation is the solution to the Mindanao conflict.

Before even thinking of a paradigm shift, the government should read “Jihad is the Way” by Mustafa Mashhur, a former leader of the Muslim Brotherhood, a powerful Islamist and jihadist movement that is spreading all over the world, currently Islamizing democratic countries, and advancing its goal of Islamic world domination.  He wrote:

“The youth should know that the problems of the Islamic world, such as Palestine, Afghanistan, Syria, Eritrea, or the Philippines, are not issues of territories and nations, but of faith and religion. They are problems of Islam and the Muslims, and they can be resolved neither by negotiation nor by recognizing the enemy’s right to the Islamic land he stole. Rather, the only option is Jihad for Allah, and this is why Jihad is the way.”

Philippines: Government Spending and Public Policy


We have many laws in the Philippines because we have a lot of problems and also some of our lawmakers dissect issues and see things one by one. Some laws have been forgotten.  Others haven’t been implemented.  So what happens is that we have laws that don’t solve problems and are just too weak to tackle issues.  Haven’t you wondered why drugs are sold in the Philippine streets like candies?  Are our laws that weak?

Our lawmakers–okay, most of them–enact laws like how some doctors give a pill per ailment.  You have hypertension? Take this pill.  Diabetes?  This pill.  If you have many ailments, you get many pills. Smart doctors see a patient as a whole.  His ailment is systemic. They can give him one or two potent pills, advice him about his diet, recommend exercise routines to generally solve his health problem.  They connect the defect of one body part to the defect of another.  Our government should follow that kind of process–a system of solutions to a systemic problem.  That is what I called in my previous post a web of solutions to a problem that is complicated.

We should start treating a law as just part of a system called public policy–which is composed of laws, regulatory measures, courses of action, funding allocation, program implementation, performance audit, etc.  It is the role of the executive branch of government  to create and implement such system with the help of the other two branches that enact laws it needs and strengthen it in case its constitutionality is questioned.  Public policy is also a web of government efforts that take on a very important issue.

A pressing issue like unemployment should move our government to plan a public policy that has multiple goals to solve it.  Another thing about public policy is its multiple goals that operate around a working principle.  For example, the government can suggest that from now on when laws, policies, and programs are drafted job creation should be one of their objectives.  Can the Freedom of Information Bill, if enacted into law, create jobs?  Of course, it can if all government corporations, commissions, agencies, departments have information desks that will take charge of information requests.  Those are jobs right there.

Economists understand public policy better because they are used to the interconnections among economic factors and indicators in an economic system.  I have a good example:  government spending without public policy.  The Technical Education and Skills Development Act of 1994 was enacted with these goals:

” a)  Promote and strengthen the quality of technical education and skills development programs to attain international competitiveness;

b)  Focus technical education and skills development on meeting the changing demands for quality middle-level manpower;

c)  Encourage critical and creative thinking by disseminating the scientific and technical knowledge  base of middle-level manpower development programs;

d)  Recognize and encourage the complementary roles of public and private institutions in technical education and skills development and training systems; and

e)  Inculcate desirable values through the development of moral character with emphasis on work ethic, self-discipline, self-reliance and nationalism.”

Where’s the line about employment and employability?  It’s clear that it’s just a law (or act if you know the difference) creating Technical Education and Skills Development Authority (TESDA).  The government implements what the law says and allocates funds and resources.  That’s it.  If skills development for future employment is a public policy, that law is just a part of it.  The fund allocation is another.  Making sure that vocational students of TESDA are employable should be the big chunk of it.  With public policy, the scope is wide, and the participating stakeholders are many.  It’s not only about the law.

Let’s use this 2010 data from the National Statistics Office’s Annual Survey of Philippine Business and Industry and TESDA.

The building construction industry hired 9,035 workers

The civil engineering construction industry laid off 16,749 workers

TESDA awarded 28,607 certificates of competency in fields related to construction.

If those statistics are still the trends today,  where will these people with certificates work?  How can the TESDA Act solve that?  Remember the government spends a lot in implementing that law.  If the government cannot give jobs to these people, that’s a wasteful government spending. If skills development and future employment among the jobless poor is a public policy, different government branches, agencies, and departments can contribute to its success.  TESDA won’t be doing it alone.

How can we give jobs to these people?  I mean local construction jobs.  Make regulatory policies and even local ordinances that will force construction companies to hire more workers.  How?  City governments can prohibit construction activities from evening to dawn due to noise and disturbance.  The Department of Labor and Employment should monitor if construction workers and their employers stick to the “eight hours a day” rule and the one-hour off for lunch and rest. The Department of Health can limit construction work to forty hours a week per worker to prevent over-fatigue and work-related accidents.  The Department of Environmental Resources can make guidelines that will push construction companies to adopt early project deadlines so the quality of air won’t be compromised.  They sound funny, but the logic is good: less working hours a day and a week plus early project deadline mean more workers will be needed and hired.

Some of you might wonder why I’m focusing on the building construction industry.  Well, it is a booming industry with high growth rate and profit growth.  They say it will continue to boom until 2016.  The government should do something to make this industry create  a significant number of jobs.  The first thing it should do is make unemployment a matter of public policy before spending more billions on programs that don’t promise local jobs.  Create a system in which different government branches, agencies, and departments have goals to solve the problem.  Employing the poor is the most potent way to end poverty. With that as a working principle, the government’s spending won’t be a waste.

Philippine Civil Construction Industry: More Government Spending Means More Jobs


First, let me express this again: the goal of this blog is to suggest solutions to problems we have in the Philippines.  I’m hoping academic experts and government departments will give  my ideas a chance.  They can critique and scrutinize them.  They can do a study on whether my ideas will work or not, and that’s even better.  If found sound and good for the country, I’ll be very happy to help in drafting policies and programs for free–not even a glass of orange juice.

Now that I’m retired due to severe arthritis and I have nothing to do besides reading Faulkner and finishing my work on the social theory of everything, I feel it’s time to think for the country.  All of us should think and express our ideas to widen the current discourse on economics and development.  They might listen.  If we don’t inject fresh ideas, we’ll have more of the same from our government.  Think about it.

I think creating  jobs through government spending is a good idea.  Using the National Statistics Office’s  Annual Survey of Philippine Business and Industry again, let’s compare the two sub-sectors of the construction industry: building construction and civil engineering construction.

                                        2008                                                 2010

                                      No. of Firm     No. of Employee       No. of Firm     No. of Employee

Building Construction           122                 33,518                       172                  42,553

Civil Construction                344                 68,902                        306                 52,153

That set of data above is very revealing.  Let’s put it this way:


                                        Firm Growth   Firm Growth Rate   Job growth   Job Growth Rate

Building Construction               50                   40.98%                9,035                26.96%

Civil Construction                   -38                  -11.05%              -16,749               -24.31%

In 2010, the civil engineering construction industry took a  beating.  38 engineering construction firms closed, and 16,749 employees lost their jobs.  Where did these workers who lost their jobs go?  It’s possible some of them moved to the building construction industry.

Let’s see whether the downturn in the civil engineering construction industry in 2010 was related to low government spending.  Remember civil construction is building roads, highways, bridges, etc.  Since there are no available data that exactly show the government spending on civil  engineering projects in 2010, let’s use value of output instead.   It includes the value of domestic construction anyway.  I assume that if value of output is high, government spending must be also high.  Let’s see.

                                     2008                                                2010

                                   Value of Output    Employees         Value of Output    Employees

Building Construction         36.99 B             33,518                     67.04 B            42,553

Civil Construction             108.70 B            68, 902                     59.77 B            52,153

I’m somewhat right about value of output being reflective of government spending.  As you can see, when the government spending was high in 2008, there were 68,902 employees.  When the government spending was low in 2010, there were 52,153 employees.

Mr. President, my suggestion is:  if you really want our unemployment rate to go down, even a little bit, increase your government’s investment in civil engineering projects all over the Philippines.  The data show more government spending create more jobs.  Targeting 100,000 jobs is not hoping for the impossible.  Before embarking on this project, the Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH) has to conduct a study on early deadline, avoidance of delay, and disallowing overtime in government civil engineering projects–to find out whether they can increase the demand for more construction workers.  Logic tells me they can, but I don’t know about the logic of your people in the DPWH.

Yes, spend on roads, highways, bridges, and even dikes and dams.  Now is the time.

GDP and “Standard of Comfortable Living”

Living in Poverty in Africa

Gross Domestic Product or GDP is not directly about a country’s standard of living.  If you think only money can make you feel happy, prosperous, or comfortable, then GDP will make sense to you.  Yes, the United States of America has the highest GDP, but do you think the standard of living of all Americans is all rosy and perfect?  Let Americans tell you how some of them live in ghettos and on welfare.  Vagrants in American cities can teach you how to live on a dollar a day.

I’ve been trying to think of a good definition of “standard of living” that fits well to our way of life as Filipinos. Those who live in cities rely on the convenience modernity affords.  The rural folks are contented with the slow passing of days.  The socialites have their jewelries, expensive tastes, and wads of money from their millionaire husbands. The slum-dwellers don’t mind where they live as long as they get along with their neighbors.  It’s just not easy to define the term.  Is it about prosperity, happiness, or comfort?

I don’t think prosperity is a good indicator for standard of living.  There are poor families that consider their standard of living good because they are healthy and able to eat three times a day.  They define prosperity as God’s blessing that they cannot question however limited or rare it is.  Others equate it to wealth and availability of funds that can finance their needs and wants.  Maybe, to them, having a Ferrari for a car or owning a big house in Forbes Park is a sign that they are prosperous.  Some believe they are prosperous because their children are successful in their lives and careers.  They think of prosperity as a family success.   In short, we don’t have a single definition of prosperity.

Is GDP a good measure of a nation’s prosperity?  Yes, it is but only on paper.  In reality, it doesn’t speak of a population as a whole.  I don’t wonder why the poor cannot personally feel the positive consequences of our impressive GDP growth rate. I say “personally”, so no one can argue by bringing up government spending.  GDP is related to consumer spending–private spending and household expenditures included.  Do you think all of the poor have something to spend?  Do all poor households have something to budget?

As far as my understanding goes, GDP only calculates the economic contributions of those who have jobs and other sources of income and financial abilities to produce or purchase goods and services.  Those same people are the most affected by GDP’s rise or fall  because their economic participation and financial involvement are the core of the formula.  There are goods and services because of them who produce and invest. The poor who are not economically active and financially able are out of the picture; thus, even if our GDP growth rate is 10%, still they won’t feel it because they are excluded.

Lots of stuff have been written about happiness and standard of living.  Bhutan has Gross National Happiness, but I have no idea how they quantify it.  Turning abstract indicators about well-being into numbers will always be subjective.  How can you, for instance, count people who are depressed or unhappy?   Are you going to use the sales volume of Prozac, the number of suicides, the count of mentally ill people in psychiatric hospitals, or the survey results that even consider boredom or unrealized dream as unhappiness?  I don’t think happiness can be objectively quantified simply because every person has its own understanding of what  it is and what it isn’t.

Many consider Filipinos to be a happy people, but are we really happy or do we just smile a lot to hide what we really feel and what bother us inside?  To me, happiness is a lofty goal.  To be happy always is unattainable.  I still have to meet a person who is happy all the time.  Maybe we think of a smiling face or a jolly greeting that meets us as a picture of happiness. Let’s not forget that Filipinos can easily adapt; millions of OFW’s are the proof.   We are good at pakikipagpalagayan ng loob–translation: making someone comfortable.

What I’ve observed is that some of us don’t even know what happiness really is or what makes us happy.  It is almost an undefinable thing. For example, what does “you can’t buy happiness” mean?  You can have sex with a prostitute if that’s the thing that makes you happy.  You can be a “sugar daddy” if companionship gives you happiness.  What is this happiness that cannot be bought?  Love?  How many people die because of love?  I’m sure they’re not happy when they hang themselves.  Others cry because they are happy. How can you tell if someone is happy with his life?  Is laughter an indication of a happy life?  Isn’t laughing all the time a psychiatric symptom?

Most people I know just want to be comfortable or to live comfortably, and I find comfort more attainable and exact than either prosperity or happiness.  What may discomfort the rich may also discomfort the poor–such as lack of water or food, rising cases of murder, or acts of injustice.  It seems we have general ideas about comfort and comfortableness.  We have our own way of measuring discomfort in a  qualitative way.  Don’t we use “bearable” or “painful” when we are uncomfortable with something or when we live in discomfort?  We even use those words for physical, emotional, and mental discomfort.  We are more familiar with comfort because that’s what we always seek.  We take taxicabs because it’s more comfortable.  We don’t buy air conditioners because we want to feel happy; we want the comfort they give.  Even when we wear or shop for clothes, we think of comfort.  Comfort is what we always aim to achieve because it’s achievable.

So I propose that we change “Standard of Living” that is, oftentimes, connected to prosperity and happiness.  “Standard of Comfortable Living”  (SCL), I think, makes more sense.   I believe it is quantifiable since it’s easier for us to validate what make us comfortable or uncomfortable.  Family comforts us, and good health makes us comfortable.  Crime, for example, is a thing that discomforts us, and criminals in front of us make us uncomfortable.  I often hear people using rampant incidence of crime as a gauge for government mismanagement, economic hardship, social instability, etc.  Incidence of crime is recorded, and its number can be totaled.  Homelessness can be quantified too by counting the number of homeless people who are living in discomfort and uncomfortable in the streets.

I’ve been working on a measure of SCL.  The one that we can really use to check if Filipinos are living comfortably or comfortable with their lives.  My use of “comfort” here considers most, if not all, social, cultural, political, and economic factors that affect the well-being of a population as a whole.  I just don’t think GDP is the right measure of or indicator for SCL.  I also can’t force myself to accept that Filipinos, as a whole, are now economically well-off because of our improving GDP and impressive GDP growth rate.  If there’s a thing a high GDP can tell us, it is that the rich are becoming richer, and the divide between them and the poor is getting wider.

Understanding GDP Growth Rate: The Bombay’s Way


Let’s make it simple.  The economic growth rate of the Philippines in the first quarter of this year was 7.8%– meaning, our country gained 7.8% of our economy last quarter. Let’s say the worth of our economy last quarter was 200 billion dollars.  With 7.8% growth rate, the worth of our economy is now 215.6 billion dollars.  Economists don’t explain that way.  They use Gross Domestic Product (GDP), Gross National Income (GNI), or other calculated economic indicators. I use how Bombays calculate their gains, to make this seemingly mysterious GDP easy to understand.  Yeah, those Indians on motorcycles know a lot about profit growth rate.

Is there really an exact measure of a country’s economic worth?  I don’t think so.  What we have are estimates based on measurable economic trends and indicators, and they are enough to check the health and growth of a country’s economy.  An increase in economic growth can also mean an increase in volume of goods and services produced in a country.  It is so because consumer spending is included in the calculation of GDP.  If consumer spending is high, it means demand for goods and services is high too.  To increase production of goods and services, more workers are needed.  Therefore, high economic growth can also mean high demand for labor, and it goes with the usual trend in textbook economics: if GDP growth rate increases, the unemployment rate decreases.

Why is it then that our unemployment rate is not going down?  Our GDP growth rate in the last quarter of 2012 was 6.8%, and the unemployment rate was 7.1%.  In the first quarter of this year, our GDP growth rate was 7.8%, and the unemployment rate was still 7.1%–no change as if we had zero growth last quarter.   If GDP growth rate is related to production and consumption of goods and services, there must be a lot of overworked Filipino workers and a lot of dissatisfied Filipino consumers.  It seems there was no demand for labor that quarter although consumer spending was high.  Could it be many were hired but labor force just expanded?   That deserves another post.

Among all economic sectors in the country, the industrial sector had the highest growth rate of 10.9% last quarter.  Among all industries, construction had 32.5%, and manufacturing had 9.7%.  Using my explanation of economic growth above, we can expect most new jobs or new hiring to come from the construction industry.  The manufacturing industry needs more people too but not a lot considering their growth rate last quarter–not really a boom.  I can’t wait for the data regarding the total numbers of construction and manufacturing firms now and their total numbers of employees.  We can compare them to the data collected in the first quarter of last year to find out if the construction industry last quarter hired a significant number of workers according to its growth and expansion.

When you see a Bombay, say Namaste!  He might let you borrow.

Philippine Building Construction Industry: Profiting More, Hiring Less


In my last post, I presented the proof of my thesis that the building construction industry in the Philippines doesn’t create a significant number of jobs relative to their expansion and growth rate.  I have the same observation in this post, but it’s about profit, profit growth, and profit growth rate this time.   “Profit” in this post is “Total Profit”.

Although I use the 2008 and the 2010 data results of the National Statistics Office’s Annual Survey of Philippine Business and Industry, I believe they are still applicable today.  Let’s not forget the GDP growth in 2010 was 7.63%, and the average exchange rate of a dollar to pesos was 45.11–no wonder OFW’s were buying condos.

Since my interest in analyzing all these data is about job creation and employment, let’s start with the job growths and the job growth rates in the two industries in 2010, and let’s go further by firm.


                          Per Industry                                         Per Firm

                               Job Growth     Job Growth Rate             Job Growth     Job Growth Rate

Construction               9,035                  26.956%                        -28                 – 10.181%

Manufacturing             9,131                   1.058%                            1                     0.535%

Now here’s the dough:

                             2008                                                   2010

                           Revenue              Cost                     Revenue               Cost

Construction                  38.391 B            31.298 B                 66.958 B             54.471 B

Manufacturing                  3.161 T              2.532 T                    3.547 T              2.902 T

Here are the profits, the profit growths, and the profit growth rates in both industries

                                  2008                                                      2010

                            Profit                     Profit         Profit Growth        Profit Growth Rate

Construction            7.093 B               12.487 B           5.394 B                  76.047%

Manufacturing             629 B                    645 B                16 B                    2.544%

Let’s equally divide the profits and the profit growths among firms in both industries. The profits in manufacturing are high because petroleum products are included.  You know oil companies are greedy too.  They deserve a separate post.  Still the profit growth and the profit growth rate of a building construction firm in 2010 were way higher.  That means  quick, easy money for a building construction investor that year.

                                   2008                                                      2010

                                 Per Firm                                              Per Firm

                               Profit                      Pofit         Profit Growth        Profit  Growth Rate

Construction           58.139 M                72.599 M         14.460  M                   24.871%

Manufacturing       136.650 M              138.919 M           2.269  M                     1.660%

A company can profit a lot in the manufacturing industry, but why is the flow of investment in that industry is slow?  I wonder if there were greedy investors in 2010 who owned multiple building construction companies.  They only needed to own two companies to surpass what a manufacturing company profited in the same year.

Now let’s put profit growth and profit growth rate and job growth and job growth rate side by side and by industry.


Profit Growth    Profit Growth Rate      Job Growth    Job Growth Rate

Construction Firm          5.394 B               76.047%                    9,035              26.956%

Manufacturing Firm             16  B                2.544%                    9,131                1.058%

Since it’s not the industry that hires employees, let’s see how it goes if we put profit growth per firm next to job growth per firm.


                    Profit Growth Per Firm             Job Growth Per Firm

Construction Firm                   14.460 million                                 – 27

Manufacturing Firm                   2.269 million                                     1

Scandalous!  Profiting more, hiring less–quod erat demonstrandum.  I hate greed, and I equally hate greedy people.  Where’s your corporate social responsibility, blood-sucking leeches?