Wednesday, 8 December 2010


Yum. On my way home, I pass by some hole-in-the-wall eateries that are frequented not only by nearby residents but by folks from elsewhere judging from the number of vehicles parked outside. Apparently, the customers are enjoying food and company despite the simple and barren interiors, the seemingly unbearable heat and humidity, and the smell of burnt food from the grill. If only most small establishments in our City were patronized by as many people everyday, I am inclined to believe that an important stage to the distribution of economic prosperity throughout social classes is at hand.

A perennial problem however in developing nations is the stranglehold of the oligarchy on the instruments of wealth creation and accumulation.

Likewise, I am witness to the mushrooming shopping centres and supermarkets owned by one super-wealthy family whose name has literally been transformed into a brand. That's the same story in regard to similar families -- very rich, owners of large industrial empires, in control of huge economic levers, mutually reinforcing, motivated by monopolistic objectives.

I feel very strongly against monopolies or near-monopolies. These practices are undemocratic and seriously undermine the economic health of nations. Furthermore, they rob us of the ability to exercise choices and to benefit from efficiencies (such as lower prices) attendant to a variety of choices in the market. Their presence in effect kills enterprise. In some sense, they are consumer terrorists.

I pray for the end of their era in much the same way that the big US banks have been shuttered on account of uncontrolled greed. I'd like to see flourishing small businesses with authentic products and genuine interests. May that time arrive soon.


  1. sad to say, but this today's reality.

    someday, somehow, some things may change. it all depends on us all.

  2. nice thoughts ha. alam mo naisip ko na rin yan dati, kaso, i don't think i can do anything about it. i'm also guilty of patronizing malls. :D

  3. That, my Dear, is akin to wishing for world peace. :-)

    And this is not even the cycnic me talking yet.

  4. they owned the Philippine empire...
    and the kicker is that they're not even Filipinos to begin with.
    tsk tsk. my poor country.

  5. Interesting thoughts, Peter.

    When I was younger, I used to wonder whether a businessman should be punished for being too good a businessman?

    Was it his fault he was entrepreneurial, brave, and hard working? Most rich Filipino families who own big businesses started off as simple people who just worked hard.

    Let us not forget that the Chinese people in the Philippines before were the ones who had lower-class jobs. But they worked, and they worked and they worked and over time became successful.

    What I think is necessary is a kind of government that doesn't favor a big business over a small one, to guarantee that any businessman will have the same opportunities and benefits whether you're big or small.

    That, I think, is where we still need a lot of work done.


  6. i think this is something that's endemic to third world states.

    in the absence of a strong state that can guarantee healthy competition among competitors, certain dominant families pounce on the lack of mechanism to perpetuate their dominance in practically all facets of human living.

    it's sad.

    this is why a revolution is both imminent and inevitable.