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Duterte (part 2)

  1. #411

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    Quote Originally Posted by stickyears
    That means Vietnamese and Thai people are effectively paying for you to have lower priced rice, that is a good thing surely. (Not for them of course, the same applies there, but for the Philippines a good deal).
    I guess there is not the flexibility in the rural labour force to go from rending paddy fields to selling insurance or assembling furniture. Tariffs can help in the short term so long as there is a clear plan to taper them off and invest the tax from tariffs into training the affected labour force. A 15-20 year policy at least. Long term subsidies are not good for any industry as they become dependent on them.

  2. #412

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    Quote Originally Posted by East_coast
    I guess there is not the flexibility in the rural labour force to go from rending paddy fields to selling insurance or assembling furniture. Tariffs can help in the short term so long as there is a clear plan to taper them off and invest the tax from tariffs into training the affected labour force. A 15-20 year policy at least. Long term subsidies are not good for any industry as they become dependent on them.
    You need to understand that tariffs don't hurt the other guy, only your own people. The Thais and Vietnamese still get the same price for their rice, the extra due to the tariff comes from the local people paying higher prices. So it hurts them.

    Or, the tariff makes the price of imported product too high to buy (the main aim in most cases), so then there are no imported goods to tariff so no income. The farmers get their high price but the poor locals are paying more than necessary for their rice.

    By all means support the farmers with time limited loans and grants to help them adapt/improve/transition but don't budget it from tariff income as there likely won't be any.

    The US government is making piles of cash from the China trade war tariffs right now. But where is that cash coming from? Not from the Chinese vendors that's for sure, their price is the same on arrival at the US. The cash is coming out of the pockets of importing Americans paying the tariffs, or paying higher local prices instead. Then the US government has to pay subsidies to support those suffering from the retaliation tariffs. Crazy.

  3. #413

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    Quote Originally Posted by stickyears
    Yes you can and it would help the people. As I say, give the farmers some time limited support to cope with the change if you want but consumers (many poor) would get lower rice prices overnight. A good thing surely.


    That means Vietnamese and Thai people are effectively paying for you to have lower priced rice, that is a good thing surely. (Not for them of course, the same applies there, but for the Philippines a good deal).


    You mean subsidise them the same as the others? Without subsidies they can't compete, so they should go and do something else. Better for them, the country and the people. (I'm not saying throw the farmers under the bus, but it's no use chasing something that's not going to happen so best to help them get out).


    Hong Kong grows no rice (it grows almost nothing), but seems to have and abundance of food. If you want something the market will provide it, if you let it.


    That's good if it helps them diversify, but again if it's not used, doesn't increase incomes and production, then give up and go and do something else.

    I despair that the Philippines has to send its (mostly) mothers abroad, some locally skilled and trained, to clean the toilets of richer nations because that pays much more. Then the government dares to charge fees and taxes when they do so.

    I've always wondered why it doesn't do better. After all it is physically well placed for travel, has a good level of English speaking, a large and seemingly well adaptable and trainable population. Why does it not attract more foreign investment to kick start its movement to a modern, high value economy? Crap government after crap government I guess, but I guess you have a better idea why.
    Around 30% of the labour force work in agriculture and on many of the 7100 islands there is nothing but agriculture. It therefore needs to be handled gently and gradually to avoid even more social unrest. It only accounts for 10% of GDP but is an overwhelming drag on growth. 90% of the economy is growing at 7% or so, then this 10% at less than 1%. Unfortunately the last serious investment in agriculture was when they built the rice terraces over 2000 years ago.

    If agriculture output could be doubled (easily achieved) poverty levels would collapse overnight.

    You ask what the problems are that have held the Philippines back? Well I could write a book on that - but in a nutshell "The Families". The landowning feudal aristocracy from the Spanish era (and that includes the Catholic Church). They own the media (newspapers and TV), Congress, the land, much of business legal and illegal. They have private armies to enforce their empires. The Philippines never had the revolutions that happened in Europe so the aristocracy are still in charge.

    The end result is corruption and complete blocks to competition including a Constitution that legally prevents it. Why would you want competition when the status quo is so profitable? A totally ineffective judicial system. A corrupt media.

    Duterte is a junior baron in English historical terms but is trying to smash it up - hence the language as he has admitted himself. However the aristocrats are exceptionally well connected, for example the Clintons, hence the disconnect between the views of Filipinos and the outside world. If Duterte fails then I think there will be an uprising with the end result a Marcos back in power perhaps followed by the communists.

  4. #414

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    Quote Originally Posted by stickyears
    You need to understand that tariffs don't hurt the other guy, only your own people. The Thais and Vietnamese still get the same price for their rice, the extra due to the tariff comes from the local people paying higher prices. So it hurts them.

    Or, the tariff makes the price of imported product too high to buy (the main aim in most cases), so then there are no imported goods to tariff so no income. The farmers get their high price but the poor locals are paying more than necessary for their rice.

    By all means support the farmers with time limited loans and grants to help them adapt/improve/transition but don't budget it from tariff income as there likely won't be any.

    The US government is making piles of cash from the China trade war tariffs right now. But where is that cash coming from? Not from the Chinese vendors that's for sure, their price is the same on arrival at the US. The cash is coming out of the pockets of importing Americans paying the tariffs, or paying higher local prices instead. Then the US government has to pay subsidies to support those suffering from the retaliation tariffs. Crazy.
    The tarrifs are set at a level not to make the rice too expensive, that is the whole point. Local rice 30 peso. Imported rice 17 peso plus 30% = 22 peso. Customer still 8 peso better off (actually the estimate is 5 to 7 peso). Hence the significant impact on inflation. 5 peso a kilo goes to develop local farmers so their price can come down to match. Yes the consumer is paying that tariff so it is a hidden cost I agree.

  5. #415

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    It's a bit silly to say you can move to a free market overnight since it doesn't really exist anywhere. Every country has policies to protect certain industries. It's all very easy to say that it's good for "the people" but everywhere there are different vested interests with links to power. It's simply unrealistic to say that a government can act in a vacuum. Those who are in power whether in a democracy or not have debts to pay and are accountable to others. A totally free market is about as achievable as peace on earth.


  6. #416

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    Another SCMP classic "Duterte channels Marcos in calling for Philippines name change". Though to be fair the article is taken from Bloomberg.

    Unless you consider "perhaps someday we should change the name" to be calling for the name change.

    The name of Maharlika was first proposed by a Liberal Party senator in the 1960s and then taken up by Marcos.

    It is not a particularly novel idea: Ceylon to Sri Lanka, Rhodesia to Zimbabwe, wasn't Taiwan called Formosa?


  7. #417

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    It would be a good idea to change the name of the country to better reflect its inhabitants instead of honoring the colonial oppressors of the past


  8. #418

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    Quote Originally Posted by Golem
    It would be a good idea to change the name of the country to better reflect its inhabitants instead of honoring the colonial oppressors of the past
    Yes I think most people agree, but it takes a lot of money to change so is it worth it is really the issue. Quite a nice name too .

  9. #419

  10. #420

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    Quote Originally Posted by TheBrit
    Arrested for libel in a case brought by someone libelled in 2012. Rappler falsely accused him of being a human trafficker and drug smuggler. Do you defend libel of innocent people?


    History (I might have got some of the years a bit out)

    2010/11 Supreme Court orders land in the Aquino/Cojuanco Hacienda be distributed to tenant farmers under the land reform Act

    2011/2012 Aquino refuses to give up land, farmers strike, some are shot dead
    Chief Justice of SC Corona says he will seek justice for the farmers
    Rappler is founded receives a lot of money from the Liberal Party and associates
    Corona faces impeachment (purely coincidentally)
    Rappler launches a long series of attacks on Corona and his associates which is where this libel comes from.

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