Democracy Forum in DLSU

Saving Asian Democracy Can the Philippines Lead the Way?

Your resident blogger has decided to do something active, you know, go out of the house and try to see what's going on or what's going on in people's minds. It's a shame I missed out on the other forums that seemed more interesting and more related to my advocacies. Before I go on, during the open forum, questions regarding Singapore was raised and I would just like to say that I've already cleared that up in a previous article I wrote: The Singapore Argument—is it really good governance that made them prosperous?

speakers at the democracy forum
The speakers and some random people after the event

rainer adam
The first speaker was Dr. Rainer Adam of the Friedrich Naumann Foundation for Liberty. He gave some sort of index of economic freedoms, rule of law, and other ratings of different countries in Asia. Reminded me about my post on Property Rights and Economic Freedom. To his left is Nonoy Oplas, head of Minimal Government Thinkers, Inc.

neric acosta
Neric Acosta, hmm. He's a good public speaker, I can tell you that. Just the kind of charismatic grandstanding and rhetoric that makes one an appealing politician or bureaucrat. It's really interesting how people use the word "liberal" nowadays. He talked about the recent struggles with dictatorships and about this guy in a crowd that had a sign that says "I am a man". It is very striking and thought-provoking. I think deconstructing the concepts behind the message further will lead you to the Philosophy of Liberty.

maria ressa
The very impressive Maria Ressa
and to my left Adrienne Nicole Bernal (thanks for tagging along)

I actually have had a chance to listen to her speak before during the Media Congress. She talked about crowd wisdom and the tipping point. She also discussed how new social media has really changed the way information is disseminated. She's from Princeton, worked for CNN, was head of ABS-CBN, and now she's in Singapore writing about terrorism.

I have this article post here about David Cameron's TED talk where he explains how we can use technologies like social media and others to make the government more open and transparent thus preventing corruption and wasteful expenditures. Every cent spent becomes transparent. Every project becomes available to competing firms and not just to those who have connections with bureaucrats.
free food
Now, of course, we go to the real reason why I was there. Yes, I was there for the free food (there ain't no such thing!). Great food provided by the FNF people. If forums are always like this, surely I'll be going to a lot more. Seriously, there was a lot of food!

free food
The buffalo wings was heavenly. It had this Chinese taste to it. Think of it as buffalo wings with a hint of hoisin sauce. It was really yummy and I got a lot. During the eating time, got a chance to talk with Nonoy Oplas about IPR (Intellectual Property Rights). His points are very convincing, actually. I mean, ideas are very powerful. Also, as a writer and musician, I want my output to be my property.

So to answer the question: Can the Philippines lead the way? Yes we can. But first you all must read this blog religiously and adhere to all my doctrines. Eventually peace and prosperity will be inevitable. For every policy dilemma you have just ask these four words: What Would Harry Do?

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