Wednesday, April 28, 2010

0 Pagmumuni ng Isang Kapitalista

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Isa akong kapitalista. Tama ang iyong nabasa. Maihahanay na ako marahil sa mga kapitalista ng bayang ito. Mayroon na kasi akong negosyo. Mag-iisang taon na ito. Pero hindi ito pangkaraniwan na negosyo. Una, wala akong puwesto, building o pabrika kung saa pinapatakbo ko ang aking negosyo. Pangalawa, hindi ko pa kailanman nakikita sa personal ang aking mga kliyente't empleyado.

Kasi naman, isa itong online business. Virtual. Kaharap at kausap ko lang ang aking computer. Puhunan ko ay ang 'bagong' 2nd hand na CPU (na parang brandnew na din dahil bago na ang motherboard), 1 mbps (minsan) na internet connection at isang mala-credit card na ginagamit ko para makipagtransaksyon sa internet.

Hindi pa kasma dito ang iba pang operating expenses gaya ng kuryente, tubig at pagkain. Pero siyempre 'di ko na ito problema dahil libre ito sa aming bahay courtesy ng aking nanay at tatay.

Ano naman kinalaman nito sa Blog Action Day ngayon? Teka lang, ngayon pa lang ang punchline.

Gaya ng ginagawa ng karamihan sa mga kumpanya dito sa Pilipinas (courtesy of the law passed by our then Sen. Gloria Macapagal - Arroyo, now our seemingly President Forever), contractual din ang aking mga empleyado. Madalas pa nga ako magpapalit-palit ng empleyado dahil sa palpak na trabaho (plagiarism, nakakamatay na spelling at grammar). Tanggal agad. Wala nang paliwanag. Ako kasi ang boss.

Pero may ilan din naman na nagtatagal. Iyun nga lang, kahit mag-iisang taon na sila, hindi sila mareregular kailanman. Hindi rin naman kasi tuloy-tuloy ang gawa nila. Kaya iwas ako sa pagbababayad ng SSS, Philhealth at kung anu-ano pang mga benefits.

Ang problema nga lang sa ganitong klaseng negosyo, kapag nagkatakbuhan na ng kliyente, ako ang talo - gaya ng nangyari nitong nakaraan. Kaya hanggang ngayon, may utang pa ako sa mga empleyado ko. At ang aking negosyo, bankrupt.

Anu ba ang nangyari?

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Bukod sa tinakbuhan ako ng aking kliyente, nabubuhay kasi ang aking negosyo sa prinsipyong kung sino ang nagtatrabaho, sila dapat ang may malaking bahagdan ng kita kaysa akin. Kung ikukumpara nga ang aking bayad sa aking mga 'empleyado' sa bayad ng ibang employer, malamang pagtawanan nila ako dahil sa halos 80-20 ang hatian.

Kumikita naman ako. Hindi marami pero sapat na para sa ilang pangangailangan.

Bakit ko ba ito sinasabi? Anong kinalaman nito sa Blog Action Day ngayon?

Dahil sa mga nakikita natin sa mga kumpanya sa Pilipinas ngayon, mas mahalaga pa sa kanila ang kumita ng bongga kaysa bigyan ng sapat na pasahod at benepisyo ang kanilang manggagawa.

Dahil marami sa mga kumpanyang iyan, ginagamit ang contractualization na dahilan para hindi sila magbigay ng benepisyo sa mga manggagawa at kumita ng labis taon-taon.

Dahil maraming manggagawa ang basta na lang tinatanggal ng walang dahilan. Madlas pa ay dahil lamang ipinaglalaban nila ang kanilang karapatan - sapat na sahod at mga benepisyo.

Dahil maraming nagsasabi na nalulugi na sila, pero hindi pa rin nagsasara. Ang konsepto nila ng lugi ay ang hindi pag-abot sa target na kita. Kita na madalas ay 'di mo malaman kung talagang kailangan ba nila o para lang tumaba ang mga bulsa nila.

Dahil para sa mga kailan lang naging bahagi ng sektor ng manggagawa, ito ang kanilang mga haharapin sa paghahanap ng trabaho.

Mababago ba ito? Sa naging karanasan ko na pinilit ko na maging mabuting kapitalista, darating pa din sa punto ng kontradiksyon - na ang negosyo ay nariyan para sa kapitalista at hindi sa kapakanan ng manggagawa.

Pero hindi imposibleng baguhin. Kung hindi mag-uumpisa ang initiative sa namumuhunan, marapat lamang na patuloy na igiit ng mga manggagawa ang kanilang mga karapatan.

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Note: Sa kasalukuyan ay hindi ko pa rin nababayaran ang aking mga manunulat. Kasalukuyan din na tinatapos ko ang isang proyekto para may maipambayad sa kanila. Ung paunang bayad. Nagamit ko para ipambayad sa aking summer class. Kaya sa aking mga manunulat at kliyente na malamang ay mababasa ito, pasensya na po. Kulang pa iyun pero pipilitin ko na tapusin ang obligasyon ko sa inyo.

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Friday, April 2, 2010

8 Follow CHRIST, Serve the PEOPLE*

Follow Christ, Serve the People

I cannot consider myself as an ardent and faithful follower of Christ. Just like everyone else, I do get swayed by temptations easily and fall into sin. But despite that, I'm trying hard to follow his living example.

Lately, I had been finding myself engaged in deep reflection. I've been trying to scan the past 20 years of my life if I had been able to do something for Christ and if I had been able to somehow live out his examples in my life. Well, I found some.

There had been several instances wherein I had been able to give alms - specifically food. I had also tried to become active in several church-based and Catholic organizations (like YFC and SFC). I had been also, once in my life, tried to pray the rosary everyday that lasted for quite some time. I had also been attending mass regularly (though there had been times that I had not been able to). I had tried to put up a blog in the past that tried to defend Catholic doctrines and teachings (inspired by the relentless attacks by INC and Ang Dating Daan). And just recently, I had been religiously visiting the adoration chapel to spend some time in prayer.

But as I look in each action that I did to follow Christ, none of them had been really of service to him.

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The Mass (for Catholics) is the highest form of worship that we can ever give to Christ. It is the time wherein we are all gathered in front of Him to praise and worship him. But for me, even if we regularly attend Mass, it is no sign that we are indeed following Christ's teachings on love.

We can sing our hearts out for him, actively participate as a lector, commentator or lay minister, give thousands of pesos to the church or feed the poor. But these things are not enough. Even Christ recognizes that.

He rebuked the Pharisees and Scribes for being too superficial with their faith (Matthew 23).

He reminds us that we cannot truly follow him if we cannot leave behind our riches in this world (Matthew 19: 16-24).

He tells us that we need to take up his cross and follow him (Matthew 16:24).

He asks us that if we truly love him we need to feed the sheep of his flock (John 21:17).

But what do all these bible passages have to do with truly following Christ so we can serve the people?

Christ simply wants us to take the path where most people never even dared to walk through.

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As we all know, being an activist or an outspoken critic of the status quo in this country is dangerous. You would surely get killed or immediately tagged by the military as a communist. Leftists in particular, are often criticized for their seemingly irrational acts like the recent events in PUP and UP. Leftists are often branded as barbaric, uncivilized and war freak people who only wanted to sow 'terror' and disturb the 'peaceful life everyone has.'

But what these people failed to realize (especially for Christians), that if they're going to put themselves in the same context that Christ lived, they were the ones who crucified him.

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It would be a bit too much to liken activists/leftists to Christ. But, we should also realize that in Jesus time, he was also heavily criticized by these 'holy and righteous people' because Christ had been very radical in his words and action. People then were scandalized to see Him eating with taxpayers, mingling with a prostitute and healing lepers. They could not accept then that a 'man' like Him would claim to be the Messiah and God himself.

He was decried by many for his breaking the rules, disobeying the laws and taking into his fold the most oppressed people of that time.

And while those who claim righteousness are busy in bringing Christ down, they turn a blind eye to the people whom Christ are evangelizing and helping.


Now, isn't it the same as what these 'civilized' people are doing?

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Christ is calling each and every one of us that if we truly want to serve him, we have to serve his people. Sacraments and traditions are okay but they are just the tip of the iceberg. The real meaning of being a true Christian lies in being able to reach out to the people of God and be one with them so that one day we may be truly free - freedom from injustice, oppression and poverty. But he also tells us that it won't be easy. People will see it as scandalous, barbaric, radical, anarchic and an irrational act that only aims to disturb the status quo.

Well, that's what Christ wants us to do.

He want us to disturb the present social order. He wants us to enlighten the people. He wants us to give our all no matter what happens - just like what Christ did on that cross.

He was crucified for simply carrying out the real message of love: service to the people.

Reflect on that my dear friends. Reflect on what happened thousands of years ago on this Good Friday.

And may it enlighten us to truly FOLLOW CHRIST and SERVE THE PEOPLE.

*The title is derived from the call to action (or is it tagline) by the Student christian Movement of the Philippines or SCMP, a militant, progressive, mass-oriented youth organization in the Philippines. For more info about them visit their Facebook Page or see this article about them here.

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