May 14 speech of Mr. Lorenzana

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speech of Mr. Lorenzana during the May 14 forum in Cagayan de oro city

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  • THE SUCCESSOR GENERATION CHALLENGES Lito Monico C. Lorenzana
  • I Our Recent Past – Pre-2010 Elections Let me escort you back to the twilight years of the GMA regime when the political atmosphere reeked of decay and we had a foreboding of its demise.
  • Before this flurry of so called party realignments the leadership of the dominant LAKAS-NUCD-CMD President GMA , House Speaker JDV , and Chairman Emeritus FVR managed for a time to appear cozily “lovey-dovey” with each other.
  • Conventional wisdom at that time suggested that hair-thin cracks began to appear when JDV allowed his son Joey to accuse the 1 st Gentleman of being a major player of the anomalous ZTE scam fronted by COMELEC Chairman Abalos . Perhaps one remembers the famous Senate hearing where Joey pointed a finger ignominiously at Miguel Arroyo . That could have signaled the end of JDV’s pre-eminence.
  • What followed next was the classic unsheathing Of sharp daggers and targeting the exposed backs of political allies – putting to shame and reducing to amateur work the deeds of Brutus and Cassius on Caesar .
  • By the end of the day, bodies were scattered all over the place. JDV lost his speakership , FVR was side-lined and KAMPI , the personal party of Gloria emerged to dwarf over the emasculated LAKAS only to preside over its eminent downfall.   That was the conventional wisdom. But for the serious spectators of the unfolding political drama , this was more an indication of the putrefaction in our body politic, which has been festering cancer-like since these unprincipled practitioners espoused the illusions of party politics and ascribed the misnomer – new pragmatic politics.
  • II Post-Election Transit to the months after the May 2010 elections when a new regime assumed power lead by an exquisitely pedigreed “ sincere and honest ” President; but welcoming and presiding over the same bunch of “trad-pols ” who are now professing support for “ the new kid on the block ” or at the very least grouping themselves as the “ loyal opposition ” ; who now must also mouth the mantra “matuwid na da-an”.
  • We now also have a new player, the NATIONAL UNION PARTY – remnants of LAKAS-NUCD-CMD-KAMPI , orphans of Gloria who, if we were in a less than polite society may give the practitioners of the oldest profession on earth a run for their money.  
  • This sordid spectacle keeps repeating itself every change in an administration since the time we became a Republic .   This has to change – and a host of others in this country.
  • To put these all in the perspective, we must examine in a dispassionate way the condition of our country. We begin by a brief analysis of our socio-political-economic structures and how the resultant conclusions impact our daily lives – and the future generations of Filipinos.
  • III Analysis of our Structures   We are a Weak Nation with a Soft State .   Jose Abueva’s , paper cites a “… failure of our leaders to unite and inspire our diverse peoples as a nation. ” As a consequence, “… too many leaders, as well as citizens may not love our country enough to transcend their selfish personal and family interests when called upon to lead, to obey the laws…support change and reforms, and sacrifice to promote our common good and national interest.”   Pepe Abueva in his take from Gunnar Myrdal’s book Asian Drama also posits that the State is unable to apply the law equally to all. Our institutions are captives of the oligarchy and they serve mostly the interest of the few rich and powerful politicians.   The rule of law is weak - laws are not always implemented ; the judicial system and institutions are very dependent on the ruling power and government; human rights violations are rampant. (Our country has gained notoriety as having the most number of journalists killed).
  • 2. We have a Dysfunctional Democracy .   This condition is largely traceable to the flaws in the way we choose those who we allow to govern us. Former Justice Renato Puno , in one of his speeches declared:   “ I like to stress the failure of our electoral system to excise the virus of the politics of patronage that has infected our so called elections…xxx…This vicious politics of patronage has allowed few oligarchs and bosses to rule us from colonial times to post-colonial times and their rule has brought us nothing but a facade of democracy, its mirage but not its miracle.”   In all these elections, what dominates are the agenda of the oligarchy, those moneyed few, the political dynasties, clans and cabals who get their candidates elected. These realities therefore allow legitimate capture of state institutions by these few. They build on this and perpetuate themselves in power, positions and wealth. Any threat is met by these dynasts using state institutions to protect their prerogatives. (A recent example is the Maguindanao/Ampatuan Massacre ).
  • 3. Power is too centralized . Periphery of governance therefore is neglected.   The Philippine Government Structure concentrates too much power in central government and a highly centralized bureaucracy. Most of the decisions that affect the lives of the citizenry are embedded, legally and constitutionally although abnormally, in the executive department or the Presidency. So many concerns are passed on to the attention of the chief executive unnecessarily - paralyzing the office in the process.   The system of centralized and concentrated power dictates a creation of inefficient structures. With 76 provinces, 60 cities, 1500 towns and municipalities and 300,000 baranggays to oversee, the executive department have to resort to interim and sometimes confusing and duplicating configurations – regional councils, districts, commissions, etc.; and   The citizens are not allowed to decide on matters that will affect directly their own lives – and therefore they are not responsible for these actions by government and they have no clear stake in them.
  • 4. Economic System is controlled by the Oligarchy   By nature, markets are not totally free and perfect arbiter of prices - but the Philippine market is especially “unfree” . Philippine Economy is controlled by a few powerful monopolies, cartels and conglomerates distorting the competition in their favor; intimidate and oppress the few competitors and make the market hostile for entrance of newcomers and their flowering. As a consequence :   Less capitalized individuals not attached to families controlling large segment of the economy have less chances entering the market; Productivity and competitiveness are lower in the country compared to our neighbors in Asia; We can’t grow our wealth to provide the means available for social security and income distribution for the benefit of the disadvantaged and weaker members of society; and We do not have enough means for providing good education, health care and work opportunities for the citizenry.
  • IV Centrist Democracy – An Ideology At this point let me interpose the Centrist Democratic Philosophy that defines us – we, its adherents.   This is not a new concept . It is a relatively mature one with its roots firmly planted in its unique philosophy of governance. It has thrived well in most politically and economically advanced countries in the world, particularly in Germany and some countries in Europe.   It has been introduced here by some of the Filipino political stalwarts and has permeated the political fabric of the nation through the Christian/Muslim-based political movements in the 1960’s.
  • The Centrist Democratic orientation is anchored on respect for “Human Dignity” . This is our core value. Political, economic and social order must be so logically designed that the dignity of each person is protected and promoted.   An atmosphere of freedom is a prerequisite upon which Human dignity is enhanced. Self-determination by each individual, an essential component, is the impetus for collective expression towards the development of a just society. And for society to prosper, it must make available to each individual the needed ingredients for a decent life.
  • V Centrist Democratic Movement - Tenets The Centrist Democratic Movement therefore holds these essential sets of canons : We must strive to create a truly functioning Democracy and the Rule of law ; We must help to build up strong and sustainable political parties; We must endeavor to establish a thriving Social Market Economy; and We must work for the adoption and practice the principle of subsidiarity in all structures of governance. These four (4) governing principles of the CDM are intertwined in so many ways and they form the collective substance of the Centrist Democratic Dogma. They help illuminate the sordid state of affairs in the country that have been plaguing us for many decades and give us directions to mitigate, correct and eliminate the failures and also reinforce the good, the positive and the successes of Philippine society.   These tenets are no less than universal and when implanted well, society flourished over time. They succeeded in other countries, particularly those in Europe. We desire no less for our country.
  • VI Prescription for Alternative Structures   The prevailing structures in our country no doubt need reforms. The Centrist Democratic Movement proposes our response to all of these. 1. On Democracy and the Rule of Law   The decision making process in a society defines the kind of government allowed by its populace. In a democracy intelligent choice by the citizenry is an indispensable prerequisite for the leadership’s ascendancy to legitimate political - power and the attendant privilege to govern – and that choice carries with it an implicit covenant with and the consent of - the governed.   The leaders therefore govern upon the sole acquiescence of those who voted them to power and they must govern following a set of laws that recognizes all are within the law and none above. This is the essence of democracy and the rule of law.   Over time, institutions have evolved that allow the governed to choose their leaders and those that must administer the laws. This brings us to the second tenet of the CDM.
  • 2. The Formation of Real Political Parties and Electoral Reforms   “ Political Parties are the primary vehicles to gain political power by engaging themselves in political contests, primarily elections.   The members and their leadership are expected to adhere to a set of principles and strategies written in a platform unique to that party. This espousal of a vision of governance defines the ideological identity of that party – and therefore, the electorate must be permitted a patent choice – as to who must govern them - based on what the candidates and their respective parties stand for.”
  • We expect our political leaders to articulate for us, as our representatives , our hopes and aspirations for a better life . These expectations are to be crafted by the leadership and lodged in a real political parties and translated into a party platforms, distinguishable from each, so that we, the electorate, may differentiate between them even before their leadership are gifted the privilege to govern.
  • Membership in Philippine political parties is cursory at best. Members don’t pay dues and don’t have a real stake in them. Funds are personal contributions by the self-proclaimed candidates and party big wigs and members of the oligarchy . They therefore dictate who runs and what programs and platforms to present to the voters.   This Patronage Politics propel politicians and office holders to abandon a losing party and gravitate towards the winning regime where political manna flows incessantly. Thus, a spectacle unique to Philippine politics emerged – that of office holders jumping from one party to another – enrolling in our lexicon the “political butterfly”.   This and other practices would have been prevented from the very start had our forebears enacted laws governing political parties and the behavior of its membership.   We are today working closely with progressive minded lawmakers to put in place such laws that will induce development of real ideological, program and membership based political parties.
  • We are working for the following reforms :     Internal party mechanisms for the membership to influence programs and platforms that are to be articulated by their candidates.   Clear procedures to enable party members to select or nominate qualified candidates whom the citizens can vote for. In most democracies today, political parties have devised a nominating process – primary elections – is the USA is one such example.   It must have its own rules to govern its internal democracy for members to abide by making the party the training ground for the leaders of the country.   Once elected, the representatives must exercise power consistently based on the philosophy of governance and values embedded and are articulated unequivocally on the written platform of the political party from whence they were elected.   Government subsidy to all legitimate political parties can be initiated, enabling qualified but poor candidates to run.   In more politically mature countries, the elected office holder losses his position when he abandons his party and the party in turn has the option to replace him with a member of good standing.     This necessitates the development of distinguishable set of philosophy of governance lodged in real political parties . Program oriented political movements (like the CDM) and political parties with a strong membership base must play a central role in the political process , reducing the focus on single dominant personalities in the elections and other political processes – and even within the internal mechanisms of political parties themselves.
  • 3. Social Market Economy   We need to establish a well-functioning market economy free from distortions and unfair practices by allowing a strong state to protect its integrity.   Open the markets to free entrance and exit of competitors and allow the greater majority of our populace to earn their living through the market process.   Institute a functioning social justice and social security systems for the enhancement of human dignity for all its citizens including the weak ones.   Institutionalize sustainable development that will protect the environment as a precondition for the future generations’ enjoying the benefits of that environment. This necessitates a responsible production and consumption process built in the market through clear rules, incentives and sanctions by a strong responsible state.
  • 4. Principle of Subsidiarity   The Principle of Subsidiarity dictates that the power for taking decisions shall rest on the lowest level structure in order for people, as much as possible, to decide for themselves what must affect them – or at least allow them to influence such decisions. Self-determination and being in control of their lives are the features of reverence for human dignity. Involvement therefore in the decision making process in a community augments a healthy political life.   Where the lower levels of the administrative structure cannot solve problems of that level, the higher echelons shall support them but not take the responsibility away from them. For these to be accomplished, central governments must decentralized these competencies to local governments; strengthening of local self-administration are hallmarks of good governance.  
  • CONCLUSION:   These fundamental reforms can best be achieved through the improvement of the Philippine Constitution   I have just given you, in 30 minutes or so, the philosophy behind the CDM – which have taken our predecessors – Raul Manglapus, Magsaysay, Manahan, the German 19 th century Christian ideologues years to work. This is not yet perfect – and will never be. This is forever going to be a work in progress.   And better for you – because you will be part of the crafting of ideas that can serve your constituents – the Pilipino people.   A few days ago, the leadership of the CDM was invited by the Konrad Adenauer Stiftung for a two-week intensive study of Germany.   They were exposed to the life of the German people, its culture, the workings of the government in the local units, the State level and the Bundesrat and the Federal level through the Bundestag, the German parliament.   It was a no holds barred exposure as they were shown too, the depths a regime can go down, man’s inhumanity to man – Hitler’s attempt to eliminate the Jews. On the other hand, they were also shown the heights that the German people can reach up to – the beauty of their culture, the resilience of their people. And a government that truly works.   A country totally devastated during the 2 nd world was able to pick itself up by its bootstrap and elevated its people towards where they now can proudly stand among the civilized people on earth.   The CDM leadership was inspired. We shall build a new Philippines.        
  • Thank you. CDO May 14, 2011
  • May 14 speech of Mr. Lorenzana

    1. 1. Challenges! Lito Monico C. Lorenzana Democracy..2016 Be a LEADER…Now! Centrist…2010
    2. 6. … .a symptom of putrefaction in our body politic
    3. 7. “ Ang Matuwid na Daan” MATUWID NA DAAN??? Matuwid Kaya? SAMI KAMI DYAN!!! KAMI RIN!
    4. 8. Cebu Rep. Pablo Garcia, NUP Chairman, Nueva Ecija Rep. Rodolfo Antonino NUP President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo Pampanga Representative LAKAS-KAMPI President
    5. 9. LAKAS-KAMPI Kami Noon! We need POLITICAL PARTY REFORM! REPORMA! Pero LIBERAL Na Kami Ngayon!
    6. 11. “… failure of our leaders to unite and inspire our diverse peoples as a nation. ” … the State is unable to apply the law equally to all.
    7. 12. “ This vicious politics of patronage has allowed few oligarchs and bosses to rule us from colonial times to post-colonial times and their rule has brought us nothing but a facade of democracy, its mirage but not its miracle.”
    8. 13. The Philippine Government Structure concentrates too much power in central government and a highly centralized bureaucracy. …So many concerns are passed on to the attention of the chief executive unnecessarily - paralyzing the office in the process. With 80 provinces, 60 cities, 1500 towns and municipalities and 300,000 baranggays to oversee, the executive department have to resort to interim and sometimes confusing and duplicating configurations The citizens are not allowed to decide on matters that will affect directly their own lives
    9. 14. Philippine Economy is controlled by a few powerful monopolies , cartels and conglomerates distorting the competition in their favor; intimidate and oppress the few competitors and make the market hostile for entrance of newcomers and their flowering. Consequences: Less capitalized individuals …have less chances entering the market Productivity and competitiveness are lower… We can’t grow our wealth to provide…for social security and income distribution… We do not have enough means for providing good education, health care and work…
    10. 15. It is NOT a New Concept It permeated the political fabric of the nation through the Christian/Muslim-based political movements in the 1960’s Governance Centrist Democracy
    11. 16. <ul><li>An atmosphere of FREEDOM is a prerequisite </li></ul><ul><li>SELF-DETERMINATION , an essential component </li></ul><ul><li>Make available to each individual the needed ingredients for a DECENT LIFE </li></ul>
    12. 17. <ul><li>Strive to create a truly functioning Democracy and the Rule of Law </li></ul><ul><li>Build a strong and sustainable Political Parties </li></ul><ul><li>Establish a thriving Social Market Economy </li></ul><ul><li>Work for the adoption and practice the Principle of Subsidiarity </li></ul>
    13. 18. In a democracy Intelligent Choice by the citizenry is an indispensable prerequisite for the leadership’s ascendancy to legitimate political power The leaders…must govern following a set of laws that recognizes all are within the law and none above.
    14. 19. Political Parties are the primary vehicles to gain political power Members and their leadership are expected to adhere to a set of principles PRINCIPLES Strategies written in a platform unique to that party PLATFORM Political
    15. 20. Create job opportunities! Education, Housing and Health Care!
    16. 21. Members don’t pay dues and don’t have a real stake in them. Funds are personal contributions by the self-proclaimed candidates and party big wigs and members of the oligarchy
    17. 22. Internal party mechanisms for the membership to influence programs and platforms Clear procedures to enable party members to select or nominate qualified candidates It must have its own rules to govern its internal democracy for members to abide Representatives must exercise power consistently based on the philosophy of governance and values Government subsidy to all legitimate political parties can be initiated, enabling qualified but poor candidates to run Elected office holder losses his position when he abandons his party and the party in turn has the option to replace him with a member of good standing Political Party Reform
    18. 23. Open the markets to free entrance and exit of competitors Establish a well-functioning market economy free from distortions and unfair practices Institute a functioning social justice and social security systems Institutionalize sustainable development …built in the market through clear rules, incentives and sanctions
    19. 24. Self-determination and being in control of their lives are the features of reverence for human dignity. Principle of Subsidiarity dictates that the power for taking decisions shall rest on the lowest level structure Where the lower levels of the administrative structure cannot solve problems of that level, the higher echelons shall support them Central governments must decentralized these competencies to local governments ; strengthening of local self-administration
    20. 25. On the other hand, they were also shown the heights that the German people can reach up to – the beauty of their culture, the resilience of their people. And a government that truly works.
    21. 26. CDO,14 MAY 2011

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