Bad Economics for RH Dummies
Ang Kapatiran secretary-general Norman Cabrera spoke to reporters the morning of July 22, 2013, a few hours before the president was to give his yearly State of the Nation address. He called the president’s RH law as “bad legislation that leads to bad economics.” He added: “the RH law will be another source of corruption and is only a ‘masquerading’ policy to address poverty in the country by means of population control focused on the poor. They want to reduce the poverty rate by reducing the number of poor.”
That population increase directly causes poverty is a result of sloppy thinking, a result of decades of Malthusian influence from the west. Thomas Malthus incorrectly predicted that the world will soon die of starvation and lack of resources because of the growing population. Yet here we are, hundreds of years after Malthus has lived and died; the only thing that persists is the Malthusian mentality that the growing population is going to inhibit our economic growth and drive away prosperity.
What’s wrong with lowering the population?
We need to clarify one thing first: The population growth rate of the country has already gone down even without the RH law. The fact of this post-modern world is that population growth rates go down naturally without the benefit of legislation that will do this for us because of so many factors, like more women working, women delaying marriage, and new ideologies that do not foster nor encourage large families.
So what’s wrong with having less Filipinos?
First, we have to consider that our farms, our fisheries, our malls, our schools, our offices, and all the sectors that work to contribute to the country’s economic growth are run by people. Yes, in case they forgot, we still need people to drive our public utility vehicles, to make and fix our roads, to process our papers – virtually everything is run by people. In fact, the whole world will stop if our OFWs stop working. This is especially true in Saudi Arabia, for example, where the world gets most of its oil, and many of its excellent workers are Filipinos. No Filipinos, no oil. No oil, no commerce, everything stops.
If the government puts the breaks on baby making, it has also effectively reduced the number of future workers in the workforce. Countries like Singapore, Germany, France, and Russia have been asking their people to make babies and spur the population growth once again, in exchange for cash incentives. So far, their efforts have failed.
Here is an example of Singapore’s ad campaign for making babies, literally. Take note, the hip video talks about baby-making as a “duty” and calls the people “patriotic husband and wife” for doing their duty.
Japan has it worst, I heard.
Second, the more people we have, the more investors come to our country for ‘cheap’ labor. Before anyone raises a howl, ‘cheap’ labor does not automatically mean exploitation; our call center workers at the BPO industry, for example, are paid much more than the usual blue-collar worker, but are still considered cheap laborers since what they earn is still much less than what their American counterparts are paid.
Third, a large population allows the government and the private sector to expand its services. The country has seen the development of many infrastructures like bridges, rail systems, malls, and condominiums and town houses partly because of the need of the growing population.
The RH law will cause a drastic lowering of the population growth rate and the total fertility rate of the country, resulting in fewer Filipinos. This is what the RH proponents and fans want, especially for the poor, thinking that lessening the number of the poor equates to lessening poverty. In a study made by Wong Hock Tsen and Fumitaka Furuoka entitled “The Relationship between Population and Economic Growth in Asian Economies”, it was found out that while there was no “long-run relationship between population and economic growth, nonetheless, the study finds that…for China, Singapore, and the Philippines, population is found to Granger cause economic growth and not vice versa.”
Simply put it: the population growth of our country causes economic growth.
According to Dr. Bernardo Villegas, our country’s top economist, P400 billion a year are lost to tax evasion and graft and corruption. That is a huge amount that could be used in alleviating poverty. Instead, we have laws like the RH law that does not address the true roots of poverty and even blames the problem of poverty on the poor. This is a travesty of the highest order, especially in a country that takes pride on the so-called People Power.
Why spend billions on contraceptives when the government can focus on eliminating corruption altogether, and in the process retain both its material and human resource? Where is the power of the people now?
The president and his government are leading this country to a point of no return. President Aquino and the legislators who passed the RH law have much to answer to the nation for serving their foreign masters instead of working for the common good. Quo Vadis, Filipinas? One can only wonder where we will be a hundred years from now, but if the Supreme Court upholds the RH law, the answer is clear as daylight.
Pro-Life Philippines Foundation, Inc is a non-profit, nationwide organization that functions as an Educational body coordinating pro-life groups, providing information on life issues it also functions as a political and legislative lobby group that advances the principles and policies with the pro-life and pro-family cause.
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