Posted tagged ‘oligarchy’

KOSOVO, BALKAN STATES: MODELING FUTURE POST-WESTPHALIAN MINI-STATES

June 30, 2008

Erle Frayne Argonza

When Kenichi Ohmae released his writings about the rise of region-states, my curious, quite naughty mind nurtured the irresistible query about what Ohmae had at the back of his mind. Ohmae is among the coterie of contemporary Japanese intellectuals that include Francis Fukuyama and William Oichi. These intellectuals are no charlatans, and they belong to a new breed of Japanese who are more Western and globalist in orientation than their forebears.

 

While my esteem for these gentlemen is beyond doubt, their globalist orientation makes them suspect as Pied Pipers of the nascent global oligarchy (financial cartels, magnates, tycoons, taipans). When they cogitated about the ‘end of history’ (Fukuyama) in a new context of ‘region states’ (Ohmae) where institutional arrangements will be markedly ‘theory z’ (Ouichi), they were consciously or unconsciously prognosticating a new order of things.

 

At the turn of the century, that order of things had begun to show a very determinative shape: a globalized world where nation-states’ very existence are threatened. Nation-states’ interests are anathema to those of the oligarchs’, and as already proved by experiences that date back to the Greek city-states, oligarchs will do everything to subordinate polities, from city-states to nations.

 

Nation-states’ interests are opposed to oligarchs’. History had shaped nations in fact as a process of overthrowing gentry oligarchs in the medieval era and keeping the potencies of rising merchants and financiers in check. Now that the oligarchy had rebounded by many folds from its ancient ruinations, catastrophes from which lessons were clearly learned, it (oligarchy) will work out determinately to destroy nations.

 

Globalization is simply but the starting phase of a long process to create a Post-Westpahalian ‘new world order’ dominated by and advancing the very interests of gigantic corporate trusts and oligarchic families. The process hasn’t clearly ended yet, not bottomed out yet. Necessarily, the nation-states will react to the process and will not allow their ruination as a matter of self-preservation. But the process will go on, and nations will be wrecked one after the other through ceaseless wars, economic collapse, genocides through natural and unnatural means, and fragmentation.

 

Fragmentation is among the political-economic offshoots of globalization. And if there is any model of fragmentation worth noting today (from the perspective of the global elites), it is the Balkan states. Croatia, Bosnia, and so on, till lately we have Kosovo, were born from out of the planning boards of the oligarchs and their subaltern politicians and technocrats.

 

Just by continuously drum-beating the ‘polarity game’, by creating new polities comprising of ‘oil and water’ unmixable social categories (e.g. unmixable ethnicities), future conflicts and wars are anticipated. This is part of the game plan. Kosovo was the latest experiment for this, and one should not be surprised at all about the latest version of a charter that does not at all reflect the consensual traditions of the ethnic groups in the area.

 

The British Empire, which is the organizational cloth of the British oligarchy represented by the royalty, and which is non-extinct but alive in the form of the commonwealth, had already experimented on the ‘polarity game’ of mixing unmixable ethnicities before. The potential and perpetual conflicts that will characterize such states will weaken the same state and eventually fragment it, till it can be taken over back by the oligarchy “on a silver platter.”

 

But the game plan today has another shape coming: the final eradication of nations and the formation of more manageable regions and city-states. Kosovo is right at the doorstep of mainstream Europe, and once the European Union becomes completely unified, with a totalitarian police state to enforce treaties and centralized fiats, the central government could always use the Kosovo-Balkan instance to re-design Europe into a Post-Westphalian order comprising of dozens of regions, each region with almost equal population and geographical area.

 

Since many potential regions in Europe are almost of mono-ethnic composition, save for certain big cities that are multi-cultural, the game plan requires breaking down that mono-ethnicity. The strategy for this is no other than migration: entice ‘third world’ and Eastern European laborers and professionals to immigrate to Europe, and if possible fix quotas to large quantities so that, within a two-decade period, there will be large numbers of migrants of relatively unmixable ethnicities.

 

Islam particularly serves the interests of the oligarchy excellently. Muslims of diverse ethnicities have histories of ethnic-tribal conflicts and sectarian antagonisms. If among themselves they could hardly see each other eye-to-eye, then Muslims would be perfect ‘guinea pigs’ for potential and actual conflicts in Europe. Many immigrants, even long after migrating to Europe, do not at all integrate with the mainstream culture, to the chagrin of middle class/urban Europeans.

 

As I already noted in some other write ups, the potential ethnic conflicts inside Europe will facilitate the institution of draconian measures to clamp down on restive peoples and install a police state. Upon the installation of a police state and the oiling of the continental military machinery for conflagrations, the next step would be to balkanize Europe directly by replacing nations with region-states and city-states.

 

The eradication of nations in fact is already on the drawing board of the oligarchy for the entire planet. The bombing of Iran is already in final planning stage, and once undertaken, could trigger a conflagration that will eventually have semblance with the 30 Years War of antiquity than with any of the 20th century world wars. The catastrophe following thereof could justify the re-drawing of territories into smaller, more manageable ones.

 

The temporary march of Europe towards the totalitarian Post-Westphalian order could only be that: temporary. It is now up to Europeans to assert their collective dissent and initiative, and re-assert the power of nations over the Union. The world is watching, and nations watch with anxiety as predatory forces are being unleashed that will see the catastrophic end of nation-states. Let us hope that the Europeans can show their collective will to stop the madness unfolding in their backyard.

 

If indeed Europe will fall, and likewise North America replicates the same scheme, then the North-South dialogue will end so drastically. As to how the end-phase of the dialogue will be reshaped thereafter is everybody’s guess. Nobody can ever claim expertise over a planet that is burning in Nero’s infernal fires.

 

[Writ 25 June 2008, Quezon City, MetroManila]

RELIGION AS LEGITIMATION OF GREED

June 22, 2008

Erle Frayne Argonza

Is religion a truly reformed institution as what its leaders have been claiming? After Vatican II and all those post-Vatican II doctrines that were elicited from this grand reform movement, has the Catholic Church been truly reformed?

Writing to his friend Dr. Blumentritt in 1890, Jose Rizal, top patriot of the nationalist movement, explicated:

I wished to hit the friars but as the friars utilize religion not only as a shield but also as a weapon, a protection, castle, fortress, cuirass, etc., I was forced to attack their false and superstitious religion, to fight the enemy that hid behind it! If the Trojans had placed a grand Pallas Athena over their fortress and from there had fought against the Greeks with their arrows and their arms, I believe that the Greeks would have also attacked Pallas Athena. God ought not be utilized as a shield and protector of abuses, and less to use religion for such purpose. If the friars really have more respect for their religion, they would not use so often its sacred name and would not expose it to the dangerous situations. What is happening in the Philippines is horrible. They abuse the name of religion for a few pesos. They hawk religion to enrich their treasuries. Religion to seduce the innocent young woman! Religion to get rid of an enemy! Religion to perturb the peace of marriage and the family, if not to dishonor the wife! Why should I not combat this religion with all my strength when it is the primary cause of all our sufferings and tears? The responsibility falls on those who abuse the name of religion! Christ did the same to the religion of his country, to the Pharisees who had abused so much! [Letter to Blumentritt, Paris 20 January 1890. Epistolario Rizalino, V, Part II, No. 85, p. 528.]

Tell me, anyone out there, fellows of the Planet, a clear 118 years after Rizal exposed those abuses of the clergy, whether religion had been truly reformed since then. Articulate to me those liberative pursuits of the churches that have indeed resulted to many souls attaining the awakening of the nirvanic bodies or souls that finally qualify them to enter the spiritual dimensions and never to come back here.

Do make your own assessments and evaluations of the true efficacy of church philosophies and practices, whether they indeed succeed or that they are mere legitimations for the greed and lust for power of a few men in the cassocks.

And by Church here, we no longer refer just to some local churches here in Manila, but rather the whole Church with a capital C as s social institution. Globalization has brought with it the globalization of crimes, and necessarily the globalization of greed. Amen. Aum.

[Writ 13 June 2008, Quezon City, Manila]

RECESSION STAYS, SPIRAL POINTS TO GLOBAL MELTDOWN

June 18, 2008

Erle Frayne Argonza

The recession stays, the downward global economic spiral will continue for an indefinite time. This is the pattern that we can now see across the globe.

Stock markets have been crashing, going through a freefall for couples of months now. In Manila, the Philippine stock market is down at 2,500+ points as of this morning, or 800 points short of its best performance of 3,300+ late last year. The pattern is true in other stock markets as well.

One thing is clear: this is a global meltdown going on, and the spiral’s turn-around towards more positive gains in the succeeding months. Trillions of dollars have already gone down the drain, loses that may never be recovered again.

Many pockets are getting badly hurt, both from the fund-rich hedge funds and portfolio financiers to ordinary middle class investors. Just about two (2) years ago, everything was bullish in world stocks, most especially in Asia. That situation had since evaporated.

Unfortunately, the harbingers of liberal dogma are still banking on liberalization policies that have proved to be so bankrupt they are, in fact, the very cause of this global meltdown shaping up. The ‘virtual economy’ unleashed by liberalization resulted to looting sprees by fund managers and hedge fund operators, the same money that they partly utilize for corporate social responsibility.

Now the oil price hikes and currency market volatilities have compounded the recession. It’s just mid-2008 by the way, and there’s still the bombing of Iran that we all await as the non-surprise ‘surprise attack’ from neo-cons and Zionist fascists, which will guarantee higher prices for oil and better dollar leveraging power. This will come sooner or later.

Forecasting has been made simpler by anarchic events at this moment. There is no end in sight to the recession, oil prices will still move up, and the recession will lead to a deeper meltdown of the liberal financial-monetary system of casino-style looting by financier operators.

Better do some belt-tightening if you haven’t done this yet. Let’s continue to watch the horrible unfolding of events. Madness and unparalleled greed have shattered the financial-monetary system, the ‘virtual economy’ of predatory financiers.

[Writ 12 June 2008, Quezon City, MetroManila]

VATICAN’S ALIEN BOMBSHELL, GLOBAL OLIGARCHS’ ALIEN GENES

June 9, 2008

Erle Frayne  Argonza

In a previous article, this writer tackled the ETI research that has gone on among the BRA countries (BRA is short for Britain- America- Russia), that there has been so much secrecy about the subject. As this was happening, another world power, the Vatican, silently did its own research, and had stumbled upon information whose impact not only humiliates world powers but could also devastate the financier-industrial oligarchs completely.

 

The secrecy behind the ETI phenomenon, according to my own researches both as a social scientist and as a mystic (who secures high knowledge by yoga methods), has got so much to do both with the real existence of ETIs and the technologies they passed on to the BRA countries, technologies regarded as classified information because they are militarily-oriented.

 

But there’s another secrecy which is hardly any secret to the ‘3rd Force’, the Vatican: that our very own creation, as Earth humans, cannot be set apart from a cosmic creation that includes human and human-related species on other planets in some other star systems. Furthermore, the Vatican may well be knowledgeable about the very special knowledge that we Earth humans were created with the aid of ETIs.

 

As theosophical founder Blavatsky was saying, nature by itself cannot evolve humans whose consciousness are sparks from God. Over 1 million planets across the physical universe were habitable, thanks to their life support systems, by human species. Such indeed was the case, as we mystics accepted, that human life-streams were created by the ‘pitris’ (fathers or collectively Father), that we peoples of Earth were aided in creation and evolution by the ‘lunar pitris’ (lunar fathers) and ‘solar pitris’ (solar fathers) in the very ancient times.

 

There is no way that this information, knowledge-based this time, can be hidden from the Church, which silently did its own task of researching on the subject. And maybe, to its own horror, it could have stumbled upon information that some of the leading families among the world’s elites themselves are not pure homo sapiens but are in fact hybrid aliens.

 

The hybridization points out to the Reptilian humanoids from the Alpha Draconis, or Reptoids, who are acknowledged as contributory to the evolution of present Earth humans or Earthans. The negative  characteristics of cold bloodedness, deception, manipulation, domineering, and so on, are heritage of the Reptoids. There isn’t one of us who doesn’t possess this genetic sub-stream (of reptilian traits), though our main human form was patterned largely after the Neanderthals and cro-magnon by our ETI ‘pitris’.

 

However, there is still a narrower stream of present humans who had a more advanced hybridization program, done in the past, that makes them part human and part reptile. The reptilian side of them ensures occult powers that can enable its gene holders to be in constant contact with Higher Powers of whatever nature, possibly evil. The same Powers can them help these gene-holders to monopolize power and wealth across countries and regions.

 

The Church could have stumbled on such knowledge, and maintains it as information to leverage its own powers in the future. But the Church ETI bureau could also be aware of the fact that this information can’t be held for long, because peoples’ 3rd eyes are gradually opening due to the vibratory changes in the Earth’s own frequency. Sooner or later the elites, who possess the Draconian bloodline, and others who may be hybrid Zeta Reticuli (Grey, like the one on ET film and Indiana Jones), will be discovered by the more sensitive Earthans without aid of yogic meditation or vision.

 

Imagine the great shock that will meet many people, probably as high as 40% of our population, in the coming years when their 3rd eyes will enable perception of Reptoid hybrids. Leaders of states, big business, big media, corporate foundations, international NGOs will be affected by the unveiling of the ‘energy veil’ and will no longer be able to hide their true identities.

 

That includes you, fellows. Many of you will be able to see with your own eyes. We mystics, being adept at yogic visioning, have already perceived them in advance of the rest. But we’ve kept quite silent about our shocking discoveries. Now the Vatican is taking the cudgels for us all, including us mystics, and we may as well welcome the Vatican ETI bombshell. This could be for our good in the long run.

 

[Writ 28 May 2008, Quezon City, MetroManila]

OLIGARCHIC CRIMES UNPUNISHED: LUCIO TAN

May 17, 2008

Erle Frayne  Argonza

The politico-economic structure of Philippine reality never seems to change at all. It’s still the oligarchic system that lingers here, as it is anywhere in the planet. Oligarchs are simply in control of every strategic sector of life, both economic and political.

That’s why they are above the Law, that they can pay anything worth their pockets to meet their objectives, bribe their way to continuing hoarding and accumulation way beyond their daily needs. The Law adjusts to them, not them to the Law.

Take the case of the long-time Marcos crony Lucio Tan. Tan is almost everywhere in Philippine business life, name it and he’s there. The once state champion Philippine National Bank is in his control now, and so the former state champion Philippine Airlines. And his business concerns continue to expand, both here and overseas.

But one thing glaring about his behavior is his non-payment of taxes that date back to the 80s yet or maybe even earlier. The consummate tax evader, he is the exemplar in this regard here in Manila.

As of last year, estimates put his back tax arrears at P26 Billion. If all we know, this could be an underestimation. This could just be but the top of the iceberg, the real back taxes running probably in the hundreds of billions of pesos. We can’t say anymore. That is because documents can be doctored, and there are always ‘doctor of forgery’ everywhere including the state bureaucracy.

Perhaps we may have discovered, in the criminal behavior of oligarchs, a new universal law, the “law of the bending of the Law.” It’s like the pattern about the ‘bending of light’, this time we substitute Law for light.

Which means that Law is relative, or is of no value to oligarchs save that they serve oligarchic interests. This is true everywhere, and it won’t be long when even those colonies to be installed in other planets and the moon will face the same reality: the ‘bending of the Law’ to make oligarchs happy.

ANY OLIGARCH JAILED AFTER SUBPRIME BUBBLE BURST?

May 14, 2008

Erle Frayne  Argonza

Hail the financial cartels! Hail the Grand Oligarchs of the North! Thus spoke Zarathustra.

They came, they saw, they looted…and got unpunished. This is the fact of all facts, the ‘praxiological core’ (to use a philosopher’s thesis here in Manila), of the oligarchy’s gargantuan looting of the public purse everywhere. “We are children of Zeus, reside in Olympus, and are beyond the Law,” said they.

Let’s go back to the subprime bubble in the USA, and the post-bubble burst stage. As soon as the housing bubble began in the aftermath of the recession in the USA (2001-02), I was among those analysts who were alarmed at the flawed strategy that the US state officialdom to shore up an ailing economy.

The strategy was no different from the dot.com speculation of the previous years. So much propaganda hype was done to intensify the tenor of the dot.com revolution, which led to massive financier speculation in this sector. Result: the bubble burst, almost bringing the entire US economy down with it in 2001.

Seemingly unmindful of the bad economics that took place, the fed and monetary authorities permitted the bubbling of another sector, housing this time, to ‘prime up’ the ailing economy, coupled with ‘tax cuts’. I’m sure if Franklin Delano Roosevelt were alive yet, he will be squirming at the terribly flawed strategy and would prefer to just die pronto rather than see voodoo economics destroy his nation in the short run.

Bubbles burst in due time, and so the oligarchic game is that before the burst happens, fatten your purse in as rapid a manner as possible. The derivatives market is the best purse fattener, all other instruments being secondary.

Soon enough, the bubble did burst, and banks across the Atlantic (USA, EU) squirmed the most over the bankruptcy-inducing crash from the burst. Horror of all horrors, once mighty financier groups such as Bear & Stearns got badly bankrupt overnight, was sold for cheap dirt price, and simply evaporated.

And to add horror to the horrors, no oligarch or exec was ever jailed for that crime of massive looting of the consumer purse. Holy Maria!

My God! Oligarchs are the Holiest of all Hollies! We ordinary consumers are the filthy pariahs, the Damned Outcastes who are treated as mere members of an amorphous ‘Eater class’ by the Holiest. Hail the Oligarchy!

[Writ 13 May 2008, Quezon City, MetroManila]

OLIGARCHIC CRIMES GO UNPUNISHED: LOPEZES OF MANILA

May 13, 2008

Erle Frayne  Argonza

Oligarchic crimes go unpunished. This is the true, said, Dostoevskian situation of the ‘morality grid’ of the planet. The oligarchs who may possess a ‘bleeding- heart’ psyche, if ever, are too few in numbers.  

Moral philosophies including the new-hype Corporate Social Responsibility or CSR are only mere ideological trappings in the oligarchic games. Take off these trappings and you have the real score: demonic greed, manipulative control of humans, conceit, and every corporate Machiavellianism one can think of. Those genuine Light-centered, Spirit-filled CSR philantrophists are still undergoing construction or breeding.

Take the case of Manila’s Lopez family that owns the MERALCO, the gigantic utility firm that is into both power generation and distribution. As found out by fact-finding investigations, the MERALCO has been looting the consumers by passing on to them the costs of both power generation and distribution, through price increases in monthly bills.

The Supreme Court later took such facts as basis for arriving at a decision that ordered the MERALCO to return to the consumers the unjust price increases imposed on the bills. Public interest groups took the cudgels for the consumers, thanks to a dynamic civil society here that includes lawyers’ and consumers’ groups.

True, MERALCO obliged, and gradually returned the funds stolen from the people’s pockets. But the question is, was there any member of the Lopez family or the MERALCO executives who was ever jailed at all for the crime? None!

Now the MERALCO looting is coming out in the open, and there’s the reportage of the gentleman, Mr. Garcia, chair of the state pension fund GSIS (which partly owns MERALCO), about an amount of P500 Million in power generation costs that were supposedly passed on by the Lopez firm to the consumers. The issue is now raging here.

What I forecast is that the divestment of Lopezes from MERALCO and the full entry of GSIS as new majority stocks owners will be ensued. That just the same no one among the Lopezes or MERALCO executives will go to jail. That the Lopezes will even gain money from the ‘sweetheart deal’ (worth $1.25 Billion) that is being negotiated with the GSIS for the MERALCO purchase.

This same narrative goes on everywhere in the planet, everywhere! Save for the Enron scandal that ended with certain oligarchic execs going to jail, criminal oligarchs go unpunished.

Oligarchs are above the Law. They are Olympians, sons and daughters of Zeus, beyond litigation and punishment.  

[Writ 13 May 2008, Quezon City, Manila]

OLIGARCHISM AND WHY RP REBELLIONS ARE UNSTOPPABLE

May 12, 2008

Bro. Erle Frayne  Argonza

[Writ 11 May 2008, Quezon City, MetroManila]

Rebellions and wars serve greed, the greed of oligarchs and moneybags who make money out of conflicts everywhere. Research findings have clearly indicated that during the 2nd World War, the industrial-financier elites of the West served both the Nazi-Fascists and Allied camps, precisely by arming and financing both. It doesn’t matter really what side wins, for in the end the oligarchs win the game.

When the navy officer Trillanes & company waged their failed mutiny a couple of years back, and repeated the fiasco last year, they stated clearly a fact that startled them. Per the accounts of some junior military officers, in some campaign sorties they were ordered by their higher officials to drop arms to the road area that was declared Muslim rebel zone or friendly to rebels. What was this game all about? Why should they drop arms to enemy zones?

The military rebels concluded that their superiors, who go all the way up to defense headquarters, were selling arms to the rebels. Likewise did they conclude that, with such evils going on (selling arms to rebels), it was impossible for the rebellions (Muslims, Maoist, jihadist terrorist) to ever cease at all. Both rebel and state officials have been raking profits from the war, the rebels need not find mainstream jobs as war provides them the bread and adventures, while state official fatten their purses with ordnance sales to their erstwhile enemies.

But the more startling find by the military rebels was that the network thread of the Philippine state officials led directly to Pentagon. Which aroused suspicion that the command for making hotspot troubles in the Philippines was directly coming from rouge forces in the USA, notably the neo-conservatives (Ramsfeld & company). Seeing this evil thread of conceit and greed, the Magdalo soldiers then made a call to arms to save the republic from snakes and demonic forces out to destroy the nation.

The astounding findings of the Magdalo forces leads us to ask to ask: does it really pay to stamp off rebellions through mediations by 3rd party peace-makers, when the real roots of conflicts remain unaddressed? Will rebellions and wars across the globe really cease at all when the oligarchic forces that fund, arm and profit from wars go unchecked in their greed and madness? Is it not the true case that all rebel forces for that matter were in fact constituted through the auspices of the same global oligarchy that has been manipulating food stocks and prices lately, acts that added flames to the already volatile peace situation everywhere?

All major ideological forces for that matter in this country as it is elsewhere have the hands of the global oligarchy  in their formation. Take the Maoist group (CPP-NPA) which was formed as the armed NPA met the new Communists (Jose Maria Sison-led) under the graces of a CIA agent, Ninoy Aquino. In the mid-1970s, as the Bangsamoro separatist rebellion was raging in Mindanao, its leader Nur Misuari was secretly brought to a house in a gated Makati village, where he talked to American agents, was promised support provided that, if the MNLF wins, Mindanao will be a major basing area for US military facilities. Even the MILF, which continues the armed Bangsamoro separatist war, cannot escape that observation of Americans getting involved somewhere in their campaigns, both in terms of arms support and information.

Worst of all, inside the CPP itself were operatives of the US CIA, a truism that eventually the Maoist hierarchy itself recognized. This led to the split in the Left and the bloody purging of ex-CPP cadres who were suspected of CIA connections. I myself received a confidential note from a former top-policy state advisor and international consultant, about the involvement of the Tabara & company CPP officials in receiving arms straight from US defense agents when Tabara was still with the CPP.

Last question that comes to mind is: why are Jose Maria Sison and his sub-alterns sitting prettily in Ultrecth (Netherlands), when they should be in the Philippine boondocks where their comrades are? Aren’t the Maoists being protected by unseen agents representing the interests of the Anglo-Dutch oligarchs, waiting in the wings for whatever the greedy elites have in mind for RP and the Reds?    

Unless oligarchism itself is stamped out, we’re going to have more rebel wars here in RP and elsewhere. Oligarchic madness is the root of global conflagrations, and stamping it out is not an easy thing to do. It will take the efforts of audacious, courageous patriots representing the interests of nation-states or entities whose creations began first of all with stamping out oligarchism in Europe from Westphalian time (1648) onwards. And that collective effort will be a protracted one.

FOOD CRISIS AND ORGANIZED PANIC BY FOOD CARTELS & OLIGARCHY

May 1, 2008

Bro. Erle Frayne Argonza

[Writ 28 April 2008, Quezon City, MetroManila]

We’re having a production-related problem with rice today in the Philippines today, which looks more like an echo problem of a larger global phenomenon of food crisis. Riots have already been experienced in at least 33 countries, and we may expect the frequency to rise in the months ahead.

To single out production factors, and especially to pinpoint flawed land-use patterns as the cause of the crisis, tends to blur the real cause behind much of our peace and development problems in the world today. This crisis is one of the anarchic results of orchestrations done by financial speculators over a stretch of three (3) decades, followed through recently by food cartels’ machinations to heighten up their looting of the public’s resources via the food market.

Let us recall that as early as the 1980s, the move towards liberalizing the food markets and integrate this sector into the evolving ‘virtual economy’—by unleashing speculative practices on agricultural products via instrument of ‘commodities markets’—already crept into our national boundaries. Gradually did the pattern get integrated into a global mesh of transactions involving not only food but a long list of articles of trade and services being transacted via the secondary markets or hedge funds.

The objective, as far as this observer now sees it, is to emerge a few gigantic cartels globally that some day dominate a global oligopoly. Probably as little as five (5) such colossal mega-corporations will be well prepositioned to control global food, thus enabling their control not only of the gene stocks (intellectual properties) but of prices most of all.

This scenario is now happening in steel. As soon as we hit the 900+ tones per annum or TPA production of global steel in the 1990s, plans were already afoot to eventually cartelize steel via mergers of giant steel firms, with the participation of fund managers in the process and ownership structures. The merger of Mittal and Alcelor, which resulted to the gigantic firm that now produces over 100 tpa, had now clearly substantiated this long forecast move to cartelize steel. In the near future, just about 3-5 such giants, each one producing 150+ tpa, will be left to control the global market of steel.

Didn’t you notice the sudden fluctuations in the prices of metals globally beginning in the middle of this decade yet? Often than not, based on our experience of the depression-era Weimar Republic, this phenomenon of hyper-inflationary swings in base and precious metal prices are preceding events prior to a global depression. This time around, the panic created by the corresponding process would be the sweetening of the steel merger option (with fund manager participation or rather manipulation) and, voila! Steel cartels are up! Hail the Cartels to the highest heavens!

The pattern is getting to be noxiously obvious that even a mere high school student of economics and history could easily see them. This same pattern is now creeping thru the food sector, even as it has also been taking down aluminum, nickel, copper, gold, banking, retail, realty, and lots of more sectors, with steel being the prototype experiment.

For the sharp observers out there, do make your tallies now as to which of the present food giants would emerge the victors. I will not be surprised if one day, my country’s own biggest F&B group, the San Miguel Corporation, will be gobbled up, via a merger with a larger corporate fish, and melt out into existence except in mere concept and memory of a once mighty firm.

Start making your tallies now. Meantime, let’s also start tallying the riots and casualties due to famine and food-related problems, and see where the casualty level will reach before the 3-5 cartels will become sacrosanct global food market controllers. It surely takes so much blood spillage to advance the interests of the Global Oligarchy, this is what we can get from the picture.   

BUILD STRONG NATIONS AMID GLOBALIZATION

April 28, 2008

Erle Frayne D. Argonza

 

[Writ 22 March 2008, Quezon City, MetroManila]

 

In my meaty article on New Nationalism, I advanced fourteen (14) contentions in substantiation of what neo-nationalism is.

 

The first basic contention is that the nation-state can thrive and grow amid globalization. In other words, globalization shouldn’t lead to the destruction of nation-states. The trend since the start of massive implementation of liberal reforms leading to global integration of markets has been, in fact, the destruction of nation-states. This trend has to be stopped now.

 

There is really no reason to destroy the nations just so that our global community can be integrated. In the Philippine experience, nationalism has been a positive, progressive force that had united close to 100 ethno-linguistic communities. The Philippine nation had just lately crystallized, with a national identity now in shape though in moderate level, a phenomenon that took over 200 years to build.

 

There is no way that we can allow the massive destruction of nations today just in order to whet the appetites of the global oligarchy and their transnational corporations or TNCs for control over the world’s resources and labor. The conservation of nations must be a pre-requisite to building the ‘peace condition’ nationally and globally, guided by the principle of ‘dialogue of civilizations’.

 

On the other hand, amid the failings of globalization, we simply cannot go back to the past and destroy the integration efforts altogether. We can still move on towards a more progressive globalization that serves the interests of nations rather than the global oligarchy. Nations can derive benefits from integrated markets, we can’t overstress the risk-side of globalization at the expense of the benefit-side.

 

Somewhere along the line, the striving for stronger nations must cohere with the collective efforts for integrated markets. Later on, nations would compose an integrated political entity, the global state with its own global institutions.

 

Below is the excerpt from the New Nationalism article regarding the nation-state.

 

Strong nation can thrive & grow amid globalization.

 

The nation can continue to exist, even become strengthened, while it sails deep into the middle of the ocean of globalization. The two are not necessarily contradictory. Nationhood can continuously be pursued, patriotism can move ahead while paddling astride the powerful waves of globalization. For as earlier stated, globalization holds the promise of growth through the vast opportunities it has opened. Nations must strive to concur cooperation with other nations to extend the scope and limits of the opportunities, while at the same time build internal opportunities to further optimize inducements for investments.

 

Just recently, our entrepreneurs and professionals made waves through the international awards they respectively received, such as Tan Caktiong (top entrepreneur) and F. Palafox (the only ASEAN architect to make it to the world’s Top 200 architects), signifying the high level of competitiveness our compatriots are capable of achieving. Such sterling achievements surely inspire us to continue to strengthen nationhood and to forge new areas of cooperation and growth-inducing endeavors. While forces exist that work to tear the nation asunder, forces are likewise growing that lead to the nation’s strengthening. We should all work hard to make sure that the latter forces prevail, while neutralizing and diminishing the potencies of those forces that destroy nationhood.

THE OLIGARCHY QUESTION

April 28, 2008

Erle Frayne D. Argonza

 

BACKGROUND

 

The following statements are excerpts from the article E. Argonza, “New Nationalism: Grandeur and Glory at Work.” This article is my humble contribution to the current efforts at formulating policy frameworks for development and growth within the context of a globalizing world. The basic contention of neo-nationalism is that it is sacrosanct to conserve and advance the interests of nation-states, however this should also take note of the opportunities that a globalized economy and world community can offer.

 

It differs much from Old Nationalism which views anything outside of the nation-state as suspect and anathema to growth. Old nationalism for instance regales at the advancement of ‘national champions’ of enterprises, whereas new nationalism recognizes the obsolescence of these enterprises and the intermeshing of ideas from diverse nations within the content grid of commodities. Old nationalism is predisposed to extremes of maximum dirigism or interventionist policies, whereas new nationalism brings one to a balance of sustaining a market, albeit a ‘social market’, but retains a certain set of state intervention for advancing the general welfare.

 

THE OLIGARCHY QUESTION

 

What should the nation do to the oligarchs? Remember that the constitution and strengthening of the nation-state, as clearly indicated by historical accounts, involved the class factor, to wit: the various middle and lower classes forged a united front to overthrow the trilateral alliance of the monarch-nobility-priesthood. Nationhood was and will always be a struggle against predatory oligarchs, as exemplified by the violent overthrow of the gentry (monarchy, priesthood/Church, nobility) to be able to advance the gains of the French Revolution. Likewise did the socialist revolutions in various countries resulted to the strengthening of the nation-state, a strengthening that was achieved precisely through the institutional decapitation of the oligarchy, the physical elimination of many of its members and the seizure of their assets.

 

In the Philippine case, the oligarchy is represented by (a) the landlord-capitalist oligarchs  and (b) the Catholic Church. The landlord-capitalists were the products of the commercial era of the 19th century up through the industrializing era of 20th centry, while the oligarchic Church exists as a carry-over from the feudal Hispanic era. On the one hand, the landlord-capitalists have begun to preach ‘corporate social responsibility’ coupled with Santa Claus dole-outs handed over to ‘shirtless folks’, many of whom are shanty residents. On the other hand, the Church has been preaching a ‘preferential option for the poor’ as mandated by the post-Vatican II doctrines, coupled with ‘basic ecclesial organizing’ among communities aimed at contributing to ‘social capital’ and empowerment. The question is, do such sets of actions coming from the oligarchy suffice to redistribute wealth and contribute to poverty alleviation?

 

The maximalist solution is the one offered by Old Nationalism as a response to the question. The domestic Bolsheviks, whom we count among nationalists in the Philippine setting, are particularly hot on seizing the assets of the landlord-capitalists (‘comprador class’ as the Maoists labeled them collectively) and declaring these under state control. But the same (old) nationalists are silent about Church wealth, which is so enormous it is clear that Church oligarchism is a factor contributing to the ailments of our society. Is it because the Church had contributed immensely to the growth of the Left, by way of the politicization of many bishops, clergy, religious and ministers along the Maoist/Marxist way, and by the utilization of Church convents for such purposes? So now it seems that a Left seizure of power, if ever, is a surefire guarantee for perpetuating Church oligarchism, while landlord-capitalist wealth gets seized and declared as state assets, if not as Communist Party assets.

 

Neo-nationalism may very well consider the minimalist solution to the question. Sequestering assets by the large-scale and jailing/exterminating oligarchs may only be fruitful in the short-run. But if the value-base of possessive individualism, greed and predatory practices, including usury and rent-seeking, are not eradicated, oligarchs will again appear in the future, thus returning us all to where we were before, as billionaire oligarchs are now appearing by the dozens in post-Bolshevik Russia. “If you can’t beat them, join them!” is likewise unsound, as this is tantamount to capitulation to oligarchism. The minimalist way begins by declaring that oligarchs, when presented with sound options, can participate in the development game. With the strengthening of institutions, they will also begin to exhibit more accountability and responsibility, by first exhibiting truthfulness in their tax declarations and payments, henceforth fattening the public purse no end.

 

The structural landscape is now changing, and oligarchs are compelled by the exigencies of the times to recognize the winds of change. Gone were the days when oligarchs were as powerful as Zeus and His Olympian Entourage who can never be prosecuted for their crimes, inclusive of crimes of extracting unjust rent from people’s purses without public consent. As the Meralco case demonstrates, erring oligarchs do go punished, or at least the erring firm cannot just engage in criminal acts without being penalized. When civil society is strong and every kind of public interest group vigilantly watches the oligarchs’ acts with zeal, the Olympian stance of greedy oligarchs receive stunning blows by way of court litigations. Meanwhile, oligarchs in localities who commit heinous crimes, such as that of a former mayor in Southern Luzon, got jailed for such crimes, something that was unimaginable in the past. Institutions of justice are now galvanizing, thanks in part to a vigilant civil society and the synergy concurred by the state with it.

 

I would now boldly declare a forecast that in the long run, transcendent values would permeate the private sphere so greatly, resulting to greater compassion and the return to simple lifestyles. Eventually, the oligarchs will voluntarily share an immense portion of their wealth to the people, through stock sharing schemes, donating large stockholdings to social enterprises, and funding the equity components or even the working capital of social enterprise ventures. Other more exemplary acts will be in the offing too, benign acts that are truly redistributive and not just rhetorical clichés of ‘corporate citizenship’.

 

Correspondingly, a more radical organizational culture will crystallize, such that, during times of crisis, Big Business will no longer have to downsize in order to continue to gain profits and declare dividends. Rather, the remedial step will be to cut down on the working hours and temporarily cut down on wages and pay scales, so that no one gets unemployed in the process. That is because the personnel are also co-owners of the physical assets. Furthermore, as already suggested earlier, new accounting systems will arise that will more than highlight human assets as the most important assets in the agency, thus eradicating notions of downsizing or expelling people during crisis periods. The ‘corporate citizen’ will therefore become a living organism, unlike today when the concept is simply a strategy to evade taxes by diverting profits to corporate foundations.

 

Should we follow the Bolshevik way, it means that eventually the local Bolsheviks would become the new oligarchs. The Communist Party becomes the all-powerful economic Santa Claus owning vast assets, while the branches of government controlled by the Party, such as the army and parliament, will also respectively own vast assets, utilized for earning profits that will fatten the purses not only of the said organizations but of their CEOs’ as well. And when market reforms will be undertaken as Bolshevik dirigism can no longer be sustained, new capitalist-landlord oligarchs will emerge, blessed by the all-powerful partocrats with the mandate to “let a thousand millionaires bloom!” As the party oligarchy and the new landlord-capitalists enrich their purses, multitudes will continue to live the lives of paupers, homeless and jobless, cared by no one other than by howling winds of uncertainties and stray dogs who keep them company. Surely, this maximalist route is not the most pro-active route to counterveil against oligarchism, but is in fact a most reactionary route, the stuff of outdated Victorian-era vampire formulas of sucking rent from out of the toiling folks. 

 

As to the Church assets, which will be luckily retained in the advent of a delusional Bolshevik victory, the key is the Bishopric. Bishops are the power-wielders of the Church, and are necessarily the biggest obstacles to change within the Church. “In the long run, we shall all be dead!” declared Keynes than, and such will be the state of the bishops: the Old World bishops will be dead soon, as new generation bishops take their place. Not only are the same Old World bishops—due precisely to their feudalistic, sexist and Victorian-era prudish (pretending) mindsets—the stewards of the vast assets of the Church, their ranks are also replete with narratives of sexual misconduct, corruption and every type of scandalous misconducts from cryptic figures. Hopefully, the new generation bishops will go beyond mouthing ‘preferential option’ discourses to uplift the poor, and move soon enough to redistribute the vast Church assets by proclaiming their utilization for developmental purposes. Such assets can be used to collateralize credit as well as for loans that should be offered at very low interest rates, thus converting the Church into a ‘white knight’ at last.

 

Meanwhile, the Old Nationalists who are still waving the insurrectionary flag can still recoup by joining the legal stream, as some entrenched leaders of communist front organizations are now doing. Their party groups can join political society, while their mass movements and NGOs will continue to operate as civil society groups, and become part, hopefully, of those forces that will popularize to our people the ‘rule of law’ and ‘rule of reason’, in other words become authentic modernizing forces. Such is a very welcome move by the insurrectos, and is in fact the forecast pathway for the concerned rebel forces.

 

NEO-NATIONALISM TAKES CENTER STAGE

 

This paper now ends with a note on the prospects of neo-nationalism making waves. Note that Old Nationalism is the dominant discourse within the nationalist streams, and this fact is fully recognized in this paper. Old Nationalists will definitely have a hard time digesting the premises and contentions presented in this article. Being anchored on Western discourses, secular and materialistic to the extremes, the said articulators will have none of neo-nationalism save for viewing it as another exotic fad that will soon fade away. This is understandable. “Old dogs can’t learn new tricks!” goes the idiom, and this holds true in every sphere of human endeavor.

 

But one thing is sure at this juncture: New Nationalism is germinating right at the very center of state power, as the President herself expressed her subscription to and advancement of the new discourse. Surely, a coterie of like minds are gravitating around her, who are looking for an alternative to the neo-liberal frameworks that sorely failed, but who nonetheless find the extremist dirigism of Old Nationalism passé and repulsive. GMA’s reaching the helm of power signifies that nationalism has finally won amid over a century of struggle, as patriots of diverse ideological orientation won the previous electoral rounds nationwide. But a new phase of nationhood is coming into being, an evolving context that demands a corresponding new discourse to defend it and root it firmly.

 

Being one among those who strongly desire for an alternative framework, I am inclined to think that many potential articulators are waiting in the watersheds of civil society, political parties and state bureaucracy for the new discourse. Many of them began with the Old Nationalist frame but now find the old frame dilapidated and requiring gross recasting or replacement. My forecast is that it will take just about a minimal work to concur a synergy of efforts among these stakeholders. The moment that the synergy commences and gains momentum, neo-nationalism will quickly move into the mainstream, engulfing civil society, political parties and the state like wildfire. It may even serve as the new inspirational light of the business sector. And, who knows, maybe even church stakeholders, notably the bishops, would regard neo-nationalism as life-giving elixir-in-a-bottle floating amid wild seas intoxicated with every kind of antiquated ideological frames that have become inimical to national growth.

 

Such is the enormous prospect of neo-nationalist discourse gaining centerfold, that even the neo-liberal advocates might follow suit, taking its cue from the bandwagon effect of the new discourse that may take place in just about a couple of years from its inception. The neo-liberals are under fierce attack from everywhere, and are on the retreat, and the only graceful retreat for them is to find common grounds with the new discourse, even if they may not embrace the discourse entirely. After all, the (new) discourse does not seek to destroy the market, that it is inclusive as it appreciates the role of various stakeholders in the development game, from paupers and vagabonds to gentry and capitalists. The strength of the discourse lies precisely in this inclusiveness, a strength that makes it worth applying in the practical world.