OUR political leaders are so insanely wrong in claiming that restrictions on foreign investments enshrined in the 1987 Constitution have resulted in our economic quagmire, and therefore this should be amended. The reality is that it is the “EDSA People Power Revolution’s” ramifications that have created obstacles to economic growth so serious that we have fallen behind most of our neighbors in Asia.
EDSA had three major consequences that were deleterious to economic growth in the past four decades. First, it toppled a dictatorship but reinstated elite rule focused on their wealth accumulation and indifferent to the nation’s growth. Second, EDSA’s “democratic space” — as the Communist Party of the Philippines put it — allowed insurgencies to grow, which discouraged local and foreign investments. Third, it demonized the kind of state-directed economic policy responsible for the growth of the “Dragon and Tiger” economies of Asia.
First, while toppling a dictatorship, EDSA swiftly restored the Philippines’ anarchy of elite families, which was the situation since the nation’s birth. This remains the reality concealed through the scheme of popular voting, which has the added advantage though of preventing inter-elite conflicts from turning violent, which would be disastrous for everyone.(more…)