Wednesday, March 01, 2023

Inequality 43, Socialistic aspirations in the PH 1986 Constitution

A revealing article from former Constitutional Commissioner who drafted the Philippines' 1986 Constitution, 

Full text: 1987 Constitution has 3 central themes, 2 mistakes, says framer
Christian Monsod February 27, 2023

"EDSA was not only about the restoration of democracy, it was also the promise of a new social order that remains unfulfilled through every administration since EDSA.

... three central themes:

1. FIRST, the heart of the Constitution is social justice with the poor as the center of our development, as enunciated by the President of the Constitutional Commission former Justice Cecilia Munoz-Palma. Hence, a new Article on Social Justice to address not only mass poverty but also the gross social, economic and political inequalities...

2. SECOND, never again to any authoritarian government. Hence, the strict limitations and conditions for declaring martial law with new provisions, including in the Bill of Rights, to protect citizens against abuses by the State; and

3. THIRD, the national destiny must firmly and safely rest on Filipinos themselves. Never again amendments similar to the 1935 Constitution that gave Americans equal rights to our patrimony, and economic policies..."

There, Atty. Christian Monsod really has socialistic aspiration for the Philippines. The 3 central themes of the Constitution that he identified -- anti-inequality (ie, socialistic), anti-foreign parity (ie, nationalistic), and anti-authoritarianism (ie, democratic). I understand the third but not the first two. And he is vehemently against changing the Consti. He'd rather have full implementation of those 3 themes -- more equality in social outcome, more restrictions on FDIs, and anti-dynasty law. Again, I support his 3rd concern but not the first two.

That is why Ma'am Winnie Monsod, his wife and my former teacher in UPSE in the 80s is also against changing the constitution especially on removing the 60-40 foreign equity restrictions in many sectors. Her problem is that she used or quoted the lousy "analysis" of Ibon or bird-brain foundation. JP, KR, TW, even CN are done on the stage of new FDI inflows, they are already in the stage of net FDI outflows, exporters of capital. Thanks to their early policy of encouraging lots of FDI inflows, technology transfer, management modernization.

I am in favor of amending the Constitution with only one wish -- make it as short as possible. 10 pages maximum. No details, all general principles and strong on civil liberties -- what sectors or rights the government especially legislature can NOT restrict or pass into law. 

All details like 60-40 foreign equity restrictions, minimum age of those running for President, VP, Senators, Congress, etc. should be done via legislation, not in the constitution.

This is the kind of equality that I believe in -- equality before the law, the law applies equally to unequal people. From Friedrich Hayek's "The Constitution of Liberty" (1960), Chapter 6, "Equality, Merit and Value",

And this. Equality in opportunity is the same as equality before the law, desirable. Equality in outcome or result is anti-freedom, anti personal responsibility, undesirable.

Meanwhile, every single year, Oxfam announces its math stupidity by making this kind of non-math.

9 Filipino billionaires wealthier than 55 million Pinoys: Oxfam report
Jan 16 2023

Why? Because their numerator, wealth of rich families, is accumulated wealth for 5, 6 decades, even one  century or longer. But the denominator is GDP flow of income for only one year. Or GDP per capita for one year.

To correct Oxfam stupidity, they can keep the numerator but the denominator should be accumulated GDP for at least 50 years. Then see the quotient or result.

See also:
Inequality 40, Real minimum wage is zero, May 15, 2021 
Inequality 41, WB's report on poverty and inequality in the PH, November 25, 2022
Inequality 42, Exclusivity is good, February 02, 2023.

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