Richie Ramos (gaijin@i-manila.com.ph)
Sat, 07 Oct 2000 06:04:46 +0800


>i don't like to butt into political commentaries...but
>methinks it's far more than simple communism that's
>being practiced in china. it's more like
>totalitarianism under the facade of communism -- an
>idealogy which has never seen actual faithful
>practice, and only bastardized tainted interpretations
>of it, from what i can see.

For that matter, most idealogies are never practiced in their pure forms,
simply because they are not really applicable in real life in pure forms.
Real life requires that allowances be made for cultural, psychological,
political and whatever factors affect the society where the ideology will
be used.

>i'm no political genius (i have no mind for politics),
>but from banging heads here and there online, i've
>come to conclude that most people (americans mostly)
>just hate communism for the sheer heck of it (just coz
>it's always been democracy vs. communism) without
>truly understanding what's wrong with communism or
>even if it IS the communist part that they hate, or
>the evils that people do in the name of communism.

hmmm... Though I don't know if this is true, I suppose that if it is true
then this would be the influence of Cold War propaganda lingering on in the
present globalpolitik.

>to give an analogy: saying "communism is evil" and "i
>hate communists" is like saying you hate christians
>because christianity is evil for the way it converted
>many unbelievers by the sword and how many many
>un-christian knowledge and texts were burned. (and
>how far is that mentality from saying "i hate
>communists - china is a communist nation, therefore
>all chinese are communists, therefore i hate all
>chinese"?) you want to hack on something, then hack
>on the people who claim to be christian and yet
>practice atrocities. in the same vein, hack not on
>communists, but on the people who misuse the ideology.
> (for the record, i think democracy is no better than
>communism)
>ok, enough outta me.
>-garr

I think that any "-ism" should be looked upon with caution. We shouldn't
readily accede to any idea without proper study. The easiest thing in the
world is to accept an idea that is comfortable to one's own beliefs. But I
would say that half the time, even if it is acceptable on the surface, it
carries with it disturbing characteristics.

Case in point:

In the Philippines, there has always been the social structure known as the
baranggay. The equivalent of this in the American terms would be a
district of a town, but it's more than that; it's actually a social command
structure that is smaller than a town; its roots come from the balangays,
which were, essentially, family-fleets of boats -- from the original
seafaring settlers of the Philippine islands.

Now, while the baranggay is a good thing in the sense that it acts as an
informal social structure to take care of its individual members/families,
it is also a negative in that sense; i.e. juvenile delinquents of the more
influential families are allowed to run amuck, while outsiders juvenile
delinquents may be treated VERY harshly (as in "salvage" -- root word is
Span. "salvaje", which means to harm the other. Filipino connotation is
summary execution, usually by the authorities). It allows for favoritism
and selfishness when it comes to goals and when it comes to dealing with
other baranggays. It's not unknown for adjacent baranggays to have an
undercurrent of "us vs. them". Most Filipinos are comfortable with this,
but I think that this social structure is partially a factor in the
presence of rampant nepotism and corruption in the government, not to
mention the "crab mentality" that affects a good number of Filipino people.
 On the plus side, if this system is used correctly, it creates what is
called bayanihan, wherein the goals of the baranggay will be in sync with
the goals of all the other baranggays in a given area, thus creating a
solid social fabric. That's why I am always suspicious of baranggay
meetings, since this is where you can see which side one's baranggay is
leaning to.

NOW, how does this tie into gundam? LOL!

Simple. Think of how the colonies are organized, each to their own
cylinder. I'm damn sure that a similar structure exists among the sides
and their different colonies. it may also explain why they act that way,
why some sides are so powerful, and why some aren't. i dunno though, it
could be "just an Asian thing" or something to that effect..

By the way, this does not mean that I condone slave labor in China.

If I wanted to rage against the dying of the light, I would have brought a
flashlight.

Richard "Richie" Ramos, Associate Editor
Localvibe -- Changing the way you see your city!

url: www.localvibe.com
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I am NOT a starving writer.

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