Monday, April 30, 2012

The Colossal Gap Between The Rich and The Poor

A recent survey conducted by the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) showed that most Filipino households are excluded from the country's financial system.
The survey indicates that 78.5% did not have a deposit account and 92.8% of those with no deposit accounts said the reason was that they did not have enough money for bank deposits.
This survey was a clear depiction of the two face of Filipinos.
If you are not rich, you are poor. If you are not living comfortably in a condo, you live in a shanty. If you are dining in a restaurant, you eat left-overs. If you are not shopping in those posh shopping malls, you are buying clothes in UK (ukay-ukay). If you are not swiping your credit cards, you are counting coins to buy basic necessities. If you are not depositing for a savings, you are having hard time stretching your budget.

Lets face it, there's a colossal gap between the rich and the poor, and that gap is certainly getting wider.
But whose to blame in this economic inequality?
Is it the government that favors capitalist who contributed large amount during their campaign periods? Is it our constitution that institutionalized the practice of contractualization and other forms of labor flexibilization, hence undermining job security? Like a joke from my previous job, "If you are not a regular employee, you are casual. And after 5 or 6 months, your employer says TY (Thank You) to you which makes you a casualTY. 
Can we blame capitalist that hoard as much wealth as possible leaving only a thin slice of the pie for the masa to share among themselves?
I'd like to point out, base from my experience, that a crucial factor is why the poor are not getting chances to improve their financial status is the cost of living in the Philippines. While the rich can comfortably afford basic necessities and can still stash a generous amount for savings, the poor are constrained on a tight budget. While in Malaysia, the cost of living compared in the Philippines is much lower. Basic necessities are even subsidize.
For comparison, a salary of a median employee in the Philippines is around Php 15,000.00, in Malaysia it is around RM 3,200.00 or equivalent to Php 44,500.00.
1 kilo of rice in Malaysia is equivalent to Php 24.00 while its over Php 30.00 in the Philippines.Subsidize gasoline price is at Php 29.00. A good meal in a restaurant in Malaysia cost you around Php 100.00. An apartment, take note, with a spacious living room and even more spacious bedroom, only cost Php 6,000.00.
For the sake of argument, you may say that Malaysia is "richer" than the Philippines.
Yes, that's true. But I'd like to point out that in the recent list of billionaires from Forbes, Philippines has 6 billionaires. Other "richer" country like Singapore and New Zealand has 5 and 2 respectively. This directs again the blame to those chosen few in the upper echelon of our society, the capitalist and the oligarchy. While they lining up their bursting pockets, they leave few rooms for the poor to improve their financial status. So, a county's wealth is off the equation.
In other point of view, the poor must also take a part of the blame why the gap between the rich and the poor is widening. Filipinos are luxurious and has a habit of being a "one day millionaire". Some spent almost half of their meager earnings into vices like going into a beerhouse every payday, betting lotto or horse race, and playing tong-its. Some spent on buying gadgets like the latest celphone and spend considerable amount for their load. I've even seen scavenger sporting a rather high end celphone.
If only we all have an equal opportunity to benefit from this so-called capitalization, if only we try to save every single centavo we spent in luxury and vices, if only our constitution safeguard our tenure in our job, then I think, the gap would be closing in.
If only........


  1. start saving now to change u future ...

    1. that's only one of those so many ways to improve one's financial status.... thanks for dropping by redlomo

  2. good info bro..maybe i can used it also in my blog..

    1. Terima kasih.
      sure brother, you can use it.

  3. I can relate to this. There was a time in my life when I was poor-er. I'm not rich now, but I'm doing better. And it's true, I feel like I have more opportunities now than I have before.

    Before, I used to sulk and get bitter at this social status divide. But, I realized, it wouldn't do anything. I should just start focusing on how to make my life better. If I keep on saying life is not fair, then, mas walang mangyayari sa buhay ko. And honestly, life is not fair. That's just how life is. But that shouldn't keep anyone from trying to live a better life.

    1. Good insight Rae. Sana mas marami pa kagaya mo to make a real difference. Tama ka, kung panay reklamo lng tyo at puro pukulan ng sisi, mas lalong wala mangyayari...

  4. Great article to ponder upon! It hit me, sometimes if I want something, I'd buy it regardless of the price kaya wala akong naiipon sa sweldo ko! ;(

    Your blog is full of interesting topics. Keep on writing eye-opening posts! ت

    By the way, thanks for your cool comment on our blog. Count us as your newest followers thru GFC #10 and Facebook #2.

    Please drop by again and we'd love it more if you can follow us back thru GFC and Facebook.

    Also, please click on the REWARDS button on the left side of our blog for you to earn points and avail the gift certificates from the merchant of your choice.

    Thank you so much! ヅ

    1. Already done and I'm grateful for following my blog. Thanks for the compliments and I have yet to recieve awards for that. lol...

      hmm, as for the rewards, I'll surely give it a shot. I love freebies, ya know...

  5. Such stark facts, I think that no matter where you live the gap between those who have and those who have not is becoming increasingly wide.

    Mny thanks for stopping by Pen and Paper, nice to have met you, I've enjoyed my return visit.

  6. Thanks Petty and you are welcome. I enjoyed reading your blog too and will surely return for more.

    Well, I wrote this post comparing the only 2 countries I've been. I have yet to experience other country's economic distribution.

  7. for me, the reason is inequality in our country;

    the gap is 99% remains jobless, poor and landless – who are these, workers and peasants while the 1% are landlords/hacienderos com big businessmen/bourgeois-compradors who own vast of lands and own big capital, who are corrupt and greedy, who plunders our natural resources and exploits the Philippine labor force – the workers

    also, the past and present governments has been faithfully following the prescriptions of the IMF-World Bank and the ADB:
    > liberalized trade by reducing tariffs
    > allowing the entry of all imports
    > agreeing to market-access commitments
    > provided foreign investors with tax holidays, sovereign guarantees, freedom to repatriate profits
    > has been privatizing the provision of social services and basic utilities by opening these up to public-private partnerships and selling government owned and controlled corporations

    the end result of this inequality and following the dictates of the US is the prevalence of hunger, joblessness, poverty, environmental degradation

    ngapala, salamat for following my blog