The Road to NIChood: The Philippine Experience

Randolf S. David


Becoming a newly-industrialized country is the new development ideology. State technocrats deploy it to justify and obtain bigger budgetary support for their pet programs, and to rationalize acquiescence in the adjustment measure prescribed and dictated by the guardians of the world capitalist system. To surrender to the singular logic of world market is not only to give up on autonomy;it is also to submit to a fragmentary notion of development. More nations are becoming aware of the equally important values that had been given up in exchange for economic development. Values like democracy, identity, equity, and ecological sustainability. The conventional view is that such values come truly salient only after the quest for economic development has been satisfied. All too often, the values that are traded off are irreversibly lost. The environment only bears the most visible scar but in truth, the erosion is comprehensive. In the Philippines, this whole flawed episode has produced national demoralization, and has made us wondering whether we will ever again be masters of our own destiny.

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