Sunday, February 7, 2010

The Proposed “Democratic Republic of the Philippines” Part II

“When I give food to the poor, they call me a saint. When I ask why the poor have no food, they call me a communist.” — Dom Helda Camara

Nowadays, poverty is the state for the majority of the world’s people and nations, including of course the Philippines. Why is this? Is it enough to blame these poor people for their own predicament? Have they been lazy, made bad decisions, and been solely responsible for their plight? What about their government?

Corruption is the root cause of poverty. It is a form of criminality and part of bad governance or bad politics. It must be regulated and handled at all levels of legislation, norms and other control systems. Thus, I formulated a new form or structure of government that will minimize corruption in the government. This structure of government is not new, it is actually a consolidated form gathered from different government structures around the world, which I think will create a new, compact, comprehensive and ideal form of government for the Philippines.

Thus, in building a new form of government the following administrative principles of good governance should be given priority in state legislation to counter or at least minimize corruption in the Philippines.

The most important principles are the following:

1) the principle of equality,

2) the principle of objectivity,

3) the principle of proportionality and

4) the principle of focus on issues without divergence.

For you to fully understand the new form of government that I am talking about, let me first give you the structural characteristics that define a parliamentary republic or parliamentary constitutional republic, the type of government that I am proposing.

1. It is a form of a republic which operates under a parliamentary system of government.

2. In contrast to a presidential republic and the semi-presidential system, the head of state usually does not have broad executive powers as an executive president would, because much of those powers have been granted to a "head of government" (usually called a prime minister).

3. The President may legally have executive powers granted to them to undertake the day-to-day running of government (as in Finland) but by convention they do not use these powers.

What do we expect then to achieve through the proposed parliamentary republic system? With greatly improved governance in a parliamentary democracy, gradually we shall be better able to develop greater human and institutional capabilities for good governance:

1. It is easier to pass legislation within a parliamentary system. This is because the executive branch is dependent upon the direct or indirect support of the legislative branch and often includes members of the legislature. In a presidential system, the executive is often chosen independently from the legislature. If the executive and legislature in such a system include members entirely or predominantly from different political parties, then stalemate can occur.

2. It has attractive features for nations that are ethnically, racially, or ideologically divided. In a unipersonal presidential system, all executive power is concentrated in the president. In a parliamentary system, with a collegial executive, power is more divided.

3. Power is more evenly spread out in the power structure of parliamentarianism. The Prime Minister seldom tends to have as high importance as a ruling president, and there tends to be a higher focus on voting for a party and its political ideas than voting for an actual person, based on their traits.

4. It is less prone to authoritarian collapse according to scholars (Juan Linz, Fred Riggs, Bruce Ackerman, and Robert Dahl). These scholars point out that since World War II, two-thirds of Third World countries establishing parliamentary governments successfully transitioned to democracy. By contrast, no Third World presidential system successfully transitioned to democracy without experiencing coups and other constitutional breakdowns.

5. In a recent World Bank study found that parliamentary systems are associated with lower corruption (Lederman, Daniel, Loayza, Norman and Soares, Rodrigo R., "Accountability and Corruption: Political Institutions Matter" (November 2001). World Bank Policy Research Working Paper No. 2708. Available at SSRN:

What are the most outstanding features of parliamentary system of government?

1. Collective ministerial responsibility;

2. Fusion of executive and legislative powers;

3. Cabinet responsibility to Parliament; and

4. Party discipline

So there you have it guys. The structure has been laid down, so it's up to you then to weigh things up.