By ALDWIN QUITASOL
There is more stupidity than hydrogen in the universe, and it has a longer shelf life — Frank Zappa
Last week, the Philippine transport sector led by a militant jeepney operators and drivers organization staged a nationwide protest against the unabated overpricing of oil and other petroleum products in the country, the oil cartel, the arrogance of the three big oil companies, the government’s Expanded Value Added Tax that shoot up the overpricing and the inutile and diversive response of the administration to the angst of the drivers and small operators as well as the commuters.
In some regions, the transport strikes triumphantly drew attention to these issues as they paralized transport. In the rest of the country, transport groups in their respective areas did their best to express their outrage and to explain the issues to the public. They went to jeepney terminals and central parks and held noise barrages. Other sectoral groups adapted creative and new forms of catching the attention of the authorities like planking on the road among others.
The transport sector vowed to schedule more protest actions until concrete actions from government are made on their demands.
While organizations who are concerned and have the intellectual capacity to understand that the issue of the oil price hike is not just the drivers’ problem but also its domino effect on the prices of basic goods and services, support the “Transport strike”. There also are some people who seem to choose the attitude of “paki ko basta kumakain ako”, and groups who have no guts at all to voice out whats wrong or bad and prefer to criticize the protest actions. Many say that the protesters are just creating disturbance out of nonsense things. Some of them say that the protesters committed a civil disobedience as a reaction to the dialogue with the president.
According to the leader of the progressive transport organization, their talk with the president was useless as he only repeated empty promises and no solutions to the oil overpricing and the Oil Deregulation Law that gave license to voracious big oil companies to dictate prices. They said that instead of the president recognizing the law that burdens Filipinos should be scrapped, he only shall recommended that it be reviewed and reformed. Obviously, the president had no plan at all to look deeper into the causes of that uncontrollable oil price hike.
Because of that, the progressive transport group and other sectors marched as they promised they would after the failed dialogue. For some groups, they were satisfied with the yellow reaction. Another noisy group boastfully threatening a nationwide strike before the talks had nothing but praises for the president without considering their loss from the failed talks. When the palace officials called for the dialogue, they were the first one to go and praised the president’s words that did not have anything for the drivers, the transport sector and those affected by the unfair oil price hikes.
People who say that the protesters are just barking and barking and instigating disturbances should in a way be ashamed of themselves. They seem to like being squeezed dry of their hard earned money and livelihood, just keep quite because it is the law and they even tell others to be dumb and say nothing at all.
There are people who instead of objectively analyzing why there are protests actions use their subjective views to castigate people and organizations who are actively and intelligently mobilizing their fellow workers to fight against anti-people measures and repressive laws.
Stupid, if they say that they are not affected by the unbearable rise of prices drowning the lowering buying power of salaries and incomes of Filipinos.
Unless they are among the super rich then it must be ok for them that the price of a single grain of rice reach to a hundred pesos. But irritatingly, people whomake these kind of comments are those who are also mamirmiraut (consiredably poor).
There are officials who instead of seriously looking at how to address the problems of their people, think adversely and pursue deceptive maneuvers to quell discontentment on their inactions. They also create and spread false information and intrigues against people’s legitimate leaders and organizations to divert public attention from the issues being raised. There is a president who instead of thinking how he can fulfill his tuwid na daan promise to his kababayans here and abroad choose to comment more on his loveless life and that his ex is already engaged to someone else.
There are countless brave and witty people who risk their lives looking for a better or long lasting solution to the people’s common issues. In this case for Malacañang, it would have been simpler to call for a stop to: the unjust overpricing of oil, and scrap the oil deregulation law and nationalize the oil industry. Is that hard to understand? # nordis.net