THE WORM’S EYEVIEW: Our society’s loss from tolerating political dynasties

CAGAYAN DE ORO CITY (MindaNews / 4 June) – How many reformists with progressive ideas and promising leaders are prevented from political careers or elbowed out of politics by avaricious oligarchs who believe only they and their family should enjoy the opportunity to be of service to society?

So many promising political careers cannot prosper or are nipped in the bud because dynastic opportunists will not give way, or will do everything they can to prevent others from running or from winning elections.

It springs from a selfish attitude among traditional politicians, or trapos. A presumptuous attitude that insists they and their family or clan alone deserve to be in government.

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The prevalence of this selfish attitude among political dynasties discourages idealists or drives potential statement to despair of ever making it to public office.

This discouragement or despair accounts for a lot of the brain drain suffered by our society, favoring other societies that attract them and provide incentives for them to leave home and go abroad.

This is a demographic that thoughtless, greedy dynasties do not appreciate or care to consider, that it is a great loss to our society.

They cannot, or care not, to connect the devastating effect of their monopolistic hold on politics to the deadening of the spirit of democracy and equal opportunity.

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To the ruling dynasty, it matters not that so many of our fellow Filipinos are lost to foreign industry and society because of lack of opportunity at home.

They seem incapable of grasping the deleterious effects of their monopoly over politics—that it costs our society so much in intellect, enterprise, and dedicated service that could redound to our development.

Until our nation attains its full measure of equality, development, and prosperity, there ought to be no place for political dynasties and their monopolistic mindset.

[Manny is former UNESCO regional director for Asia-Pacific; secretary-general, Southeast Asia Publishers Association; director, Development Academy of Philippines; member, Philippine Mission to the UN; vice chair, Local Government Academy; member, Cory Government’s Peace Panel; awardee, PPI-UNICEF outstanding columnist. Author of books on governance, he is chairman/convenor of Gising Barangay Movement Inc. [email protected] ]