Carlo's Think Pieces

Reflections of a Filipino in the Netherlands

Archive for March, 2011

How to Win the RH Debate

Posted by butalidnl on 26 March 2011

The Catholic Bishops Conference of the Philippines (CBCP) seems to be “winning” the RH debate. By cleverly manipulating the debate topic, by skilled political maneuvering (note: the threat to excommunicate PNoy, and the threat to support the burial of Marcos at Libingan ng mga Bayani), and by creative name calling, the CBCP is now calling the shots in the “debate”. Even though its pronouncements and moves may seem ridiculous, the net effect is that they DO steer the debate their way. And the pro-RH advocates, who are not “playing dirty”, are losing the fight for public opinion.

RH advocates are fighting from a disadvantageous position. Their opponent, the CBCP, is able to mount an organized and well-funded campaign. RH advocates, on the other hand, are an unorganized group of well-meaning citizens who have a lot less experience than the CBCP, and who seem to believe that the debate will be won by reasonable argumentation.

Unfortunately, public opinion campaigns are quite different from a formal debate. It is not the side who puts forward the best arguments who wins; but the side whose message predominates. Why is this so? Public opinion deals with the public – and most of the public does not have the time, inclination or access to information needed for making a well formed and balanced opinion. Instead, most people rely on images, impressions, the opinion of “authorities” that they trust, etc. for their opinions. This means that in the public opinion campaign, the key is to have good images and sound bites. RH advocates who are fighting with reason may win in the classroom, but lose in the fight for public opinion.

RH advocates are spending so much time engaging the anti-RH activists in debate; and too little time spreading the message to the broad public. The CBCP, on the other hand, is quite good at reaching out to the broad public, and in tying up the RH advocates in all kinds of minor battles.

I think that it is now the time for pro-RH advocates to turn the tables on the CBCP, and also reach out to the broad public. And to use images and sound bites to do this. Only by doing this, could they hope to “win” this “debate”.

Grab the Initiative on Topics
The CBCP, with all its ridiculous charges that RH bill promotes abortion, has actually succeeded in steering the debate to “abortion” and no longer the content of the RH Bill. The CBCP is winning this debate because of this.

RH bill advocates should grab the initiative in terms of the topics under debate. And there are enough of them:

Condoms Against AIDS. Point out that the most effective method of preventing the spread of AIDS is using condoms. And, since the CBCP is against the use of condoms, this means that it is indirectly responsible for the spread of AIDS. (No ifs, or buts, just push this line. After all the Pope himself has conceded on this issue.)

Abortion when Woman’s Life in Danger. While most cases of abortion are not that dramatic, this will present the case that abortion CAN be an option to consider. What will the church say to this: “Let the woman die, instead of the baby”? I think they will be in a bind on this question.

Sex Education saves Lives, Sex Ignorance Kills. This is actually quite logical, but it is also emotive if it is delivered well. Ignorance of sex leads to unwanted pregnancies, and illegal abortions, and probable death. Unguarded sex can lead to AIDS. Teenage mothers’ lives will be ruined, or worse lead to abandonment of babies.

Image Forming
It is a battle for images. The CBCP claims that their image is “pro-life”. And who could argue against that – are you “anti-life” then?  We need to develop images of the CBCP that will stick to them, and which they can’t shake away. When it comes to public opinion, the image is everything; so let’s hope our images stick (don’t worry about nuances – nuances are for people actually crafting laws, the rest of us are moved by images).

Damaso. This is the slogan popularized by Carlos Celdran, in which the CBCP is likened to the infamous Padre Damaso from Noli me Tangere. It invokes images of friars during the Spanish times, and how they abused their power. It is powerful, but doesn’t carry enough weight emotively, since most Filipinos don’t know and feel Spanish-era abuses.

Taliban. If we allow the bishops to fully get their way now, sooner or later our women will be forced to wear burqas. This is a bit dramatic, but it is actually quite truthful. The bishops are a Filipino version of the Taliban in that they claim to know the will of God, and interpret it in a socially very backward manner. And the Taliban are quite unreasonable people, just like the CBCP. And if they had their way, they will force women to cover up (there is already a dress code for churches), the more the better.

Sex-Starved Old Men. The CBCP is a group of celibates who since they can’t have any, seek to deprive the rest of us of SEX. All this pro-life talk is nonsense, the main thing is SEX. It’s a matter of the CBCP saying: “Since we can’t have it, the rest of you should get as little SEX as possible.”

SSOM evokes all kinds of images, none of which is positive. And SSOM goes well with Taliban – the Taliban imposes burqas on women, because otherwise they would be a temptation to men. SSOM also points to the fact that priests, who are not supposed to have sexual relationships, don’t have the right to impose their views of sex on others.

“Guerilla” Actions
Since pro-RH advocates have generally less financial resources than the CBCP, they have to be resourceful. Again, it is not a matter of projecting an image of moderation and reasonableness (these traits lose debates, actually). It is a matter of getting the message through.

The “Damaso” stunt by Carlos Celdran was a very good case of a guerilla action. As a result of Celdran’s stunt, the CBCP was forced to concentrate on him for a few days, and in the process merely popularized his message. The more they painted him as a bad person for what he did, the more Celdran, and the RH bill gained in popularity.  Celdran’s new stunt of taking down an anti-RH streamer could potentially do this again, although I think the CBCP will not be so stupid as to again charge him in court.

I think more people could do guerilla actions for RH.  If people hold up a small banner saying “Damaso” or “Taliban” whenever there is a homily denouncing the RH bill, and then post this in a blog or website, the effect will be quite big. And that if the one holding the banner is led away, another will unfurl her/his banner; so that during the whole anti-RH homily the attention will be on the Damaso/Taliban banners, and not on the homily.

If a certain color could be associated with these banners – I suggest to use lila (light violet) as the color, since this is the color of the women’s movement – eventually, people would no longer need to put up banners with words: a lila colored piece of cloth will do.

Or, people could simply stick the word “Taliban” “Damaso” or “SSOM”(Sex Starved Old Men) on anti-RH posters. This turns the tables on the CBCP; their financial weight lets them afford more posters, but opponents can easily (and cheaply) negate this advantage.

Pro RH people could even go on the poster offensive, with small stickers everywhere saying “Stop the Taliban” or “Stop SSOM” (reminds me of the successful “BMI Ngayon” – Batas Militar Ibagsak – stickers during Martial Law). This would get people talking; and this would end up as negative publicity for the CBCP and its anti-RH stand.

In the end, sounding unreasonable is not a problem. The idea is to force the issue (or a particular interpretation of it) on the public consciousness. And to put the CBCP on the defensive. The more they are forced to defend, the less they are able to attack the RH bill.

Call for Action
This blog post is a call for action. Let us take back the issue of the RH bill. Let us minimize the time we spend debating with anti-RH activists. Let us reach out to the people.

As few as 20 to 30 people could have a huge impact if they unfurl “Damaso” or “Taliban” banners (in Lila) in as many churches as they can reach, when the priest reads an anti-RH homily. Perhaps a team of 4 or 5 per church will do (holders of banners, and one to take photos).

Other people could maximize the use of Twitter and Facebook (and other social media) to spread the message of the RH Bill. A one or two sentence entry every day on Twitter/Facebook should do the trick – encourage your friends to do the same.

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The Real Story of Holy Week

Posted by butalidnl on 24 March 2011

Jesus was praying at the Garden of Gethsemane, which is actually an olive grove owned by his family. His disciples were also there, just lying around, waiting for things to happen. Jesus hated the position he found himself in, but he had no intention of backing out of the deal. Judas Escariot had been negotiating for the last three days with the Romans, to get the release of his son – Jesus bar Abbas – in return for his surrender to the Romans.

Jesus, as the rightful heir to the Jewish crown, had done his best to overthrow Herod and the Jewish high priests (and the Romans too). He had failed miserably in this quest, and may probably pay with his life for his failure.

Failed Uprising
It all started so well. Three years of preparatory work all over the country had finally been over. It was a hard struggle, but at last all the Jewish factions – the Pharisees, Sadducees, Essenes and Zealots – finally acknowledged him as the aspirant King of the Jews, and had agreed to participate in the uprising. Jesus had under his direct command some 2000 armed zealot troops and about 10,000 other unarmed supporters. He indirectly was also supported by a large section of Jerusalem’s population. This should be enough to overpower the 3000 Roman troops that he expected to be in Jerusalem. On the Sunday before Passover, he was ready.

He marched with his supporters to the Jewish Temple.  Once in the Temple grounds, he headed straight to the section where the money changers were (the other merchants  were mostly Jews, while the money changers were foreigners) and started a riot by overturning their stalls.  According to plan, they overpowered the Temple guards and took over the whole Temple compound; and were expecting to defeat the Romans when they came.

Unfortunately for them, the Roman garrison at that time was 6000 soldiers strong – twice their usual strength for a Passover. 3000 soldiers had just arrived to relieve the usual garrison, and the soldiers who were due to leave were asked to stay on till after Passover. So, when the riot happened, the Roman troops overwhelmed the zealots and others. A lot of people were killed in the battle, and Jesus and most of his commanders were barely able to escape. In the commotion, the Romans were able to capture one of his commanders, who happened to be his son – Jesus bar Abbas.

With his revolt quashed, and the Romans extending the stay of the “extra” legions because of the revolt, Jesus had to act fast. He sent “feelers” to see how to get the Romans to release his son. But the Romans asked a very high price – they wanted HIM in exchange.

Then, Judas Escariot (who was Jesus’ most trusted lieutenant, and also his overall treasurer) came out with a plan: Jesus will be exchanged for bar Abbas; the Romans then will crucify him (since he had revolted against the Romans), but that he would somehow not die in the process. For him not to die, Judas had to offer money to the Centurion who will do the task. This Centurion had to agree to crucify Jesus in an area near Jesus’ family “Garden”, and then allow his family to take down his body before the Sabbath starts, and deposit him in his family crypt nearby. The timing had to be perfect: Jesus had to be crucified around noon on Friday, so that he would not hang at the Cross for too long. (The Romans had to take down bodies hanging on crosses before the Sabbath, which starts on 6 pm Friday.) Judas negotiated all this with the Centurion and paid him a down payment of 30 pieces of silver. He was to receive the balance, another 30 pieces of silver, after the successful crucifixion.

Judas had made all the arrangements, which had to be kept absolutely secret. He assured Jesus that the plan would work. But as Jesus waited for Judas to come with the designated Centurion and his men, he was filled with doubt.  A lot of things could go wrong. What if the Romans decided not to trade bar Abbas for him, but just killed them both? What if another Centurion (one who had not been bribed) would be assigned to crucify him? What if the designated Centurion changed his mind? What if the Romans decided to crucify him on the Sunday? What if they were caught by other officials? So many things could go wrong. But what could he do? They have his son! if bar Abbas died, what would happen to the royal line? Who would be left to claim the Jewish throne? His attempt had failed, and he was finished anyway; so the survival of his son was of utmost importance. He had to go through with it, and just hope that Judas’ arrangements turned out well.

Postscript
Everything happened according to Judas’ plan. Jesus barely survived his crucifixion, and he was rushed to his crypt, where Essene healers were waiting to revive him. The day after the crucifixion (on the Sabbath), Jesus was transferred to an Essene house for further recuperation. The Centurion had thus delivered on the deal; but he wasn’t paid the balance of 30 pieces of silver. And this was because Judas Escariot died before he could do so. Judas had been so busy making arrangements, he was unable to notify his kinsmen in time regarding the plans. So, when his kinsmen found out that Judas had turned Jesus over to the Romans, they got mad and stabbed Judas till he died, for betraying their king.

Jesus was forced to go into hiding for the rest of his life, spending most of his time with Essene communities in the desert.  He was still alive by 66 AD, when his grandchild, Simon Bar Giora,  finally defeated the Romans, and established an independent state of Israel.  And after five years of bitter fighting, the last Jewish fighters fought their last battle at the fortress of Masada. At the end, they all (including Jesus) committed suicide, rather than surrender to the Romans.

See also:The Real Christmas Story

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Nuclear Power after Fukushima

Posted by butalidnl on 22 March 2011

The present problems with the nuclear reactors at Fukushima are sure to affect how countries look at nuclear energy. And the overall net effect is that lesser nuclear plants will be built, and those that will be built will be made to higher safety specifications.

In the Philippines, the proposal to build nuclear power plants and/or activate the Bataan Nuclear Power Plant seems to have died with Fukushima. These proposals were based on the apparent safety of Japanese nuclear plants. In Germany, the plan to extend the life of a number of nuclear plants seems also to have died. Venezuela also announced that they are freezing their plans to build a nuclear plant, in the light of the Fukushima nuclear crisis.

In the US and France, authorities insist that nuclear power plants are safe; and that they plan to continue building them – to new, stricter specifications.

Vulnerabilities
Traditional ideas about protecting nuclear plants have concentrated on protecting the reactor core. Fukushima shows that vulnerabilities outside this core could result in nuclear accidents.

Nuclear advocates say that a 9.0 magnitude quake together with a 10 meter high tsunami is a very unique event, and we shouldn’t worry too much about this happening elsewhere. True, but other kinds of “unique” events could still happen elsewhere. Humans can also produce catastrophes in the form of a terrorist attack. After Fukushima, terrorists all over the world now know that nuclear reactors are more vulnerable than they previously thought.  It is no longer a matter of disrupting the reactor core (which IS hardened), but a well-planned attack could knock out the pumping system and cause a disaster anyway. Thus, what authorities say about a reactor being able to withstand even a nuclear attack is no longer valid; a much smaller explosion would now do. We could imagine things like a 747 plane crash or a truck bomb would suffice to cause a meltdown. Or, a hacker could simply turn off the pumping systems from a distance.

Cooling Pumps. The constant supply of water needed for cooling makes it vulnerable to all kinds of disruption. In Fukushima, this was due to the tsunami that hit it. The tsunami knocked out the triple-redundant pumping systems. These pumping systems are not as hardened as the reactor core, and thus quite vulnerable.

Spent Fuel Rods. The storage area for spent fuel rods is another vulnerable point. There are not as hardened as the reactor core. Since the rods retain more than 90% of the original uranium, they could heat up if the water is taken away.

Software. The controls of nuclear plants are run by computer programs. Bugs in these programs, or more probably, their inability to cope with unusual events, may cause problems. Also, if the controlling software is connected to the outside – this would be an added vulnerability. Hackers could then disrupt the software itself, even causing a meltdown.

Safety Requirements
“Hardening”. The pump system and spent fuel rods should be protected by more layers of cement and/or steel. They should be made strong enough to withstand a major tsunami, a plane crash (ala WTC) or a truck bomb.

Isolated Back-ups. Back-up pumps should be stored at relatively distant locations (perhaps 2 km away) so that they will survive any “direct hits” on the plant itself (this is what is done for data backups).  It should also be possible to install the pumps manually, or robot systems should be available to install them.

Software for the plant should be physically separated from the outside. No part of the system should be accessible from outside sites. This way, no hackers could disrupt the plant from outside.

Protection from Outside Takeover. When controls are isolated, the only way to induce a meltdown will be for a suicide team to take over the plant to cause a meltdown. Measures should be taken to protect nuclear plants from such a takeover. The computers on site should also have programming that will disregard commands that would cause a meltdown.

Insurance
Governments should require that insurance should be taken out for possible nuclear accidents. This should cover costs for lives lost and property damage, as well as for relocating affected people and businesses from a given distance around the plant (e.g. a 20 km radius). At present, this “insurance” is covered by the national government, in the sense that if an accident occurs, the national government will shoulder all damages. This is a hidden subsidy to the nuclear industry.

This insurance should be available from private sources, and the company operating the plant should shoulder this expense. And the insurance should be regularly updated to make sure it corresponds to changes in population and economic activity in the area.

If private insurance companies charge “too high” a premium for this insurance, then it is obvious – the planned plant is unsafe.

Insurance coverage will also force companies to implement safety measures. Insurance companies would charge more if the plant lacks certain safety features. There is no such thing as “uninsurable”; it all boils down to a question of price.

The Obama administrations’ plan to “review” all US nuclear plants is, by itself, toothless. Is the government willing to subject all plants to the insurance requirement? Are plant operators willing to make the needed changes to harden plants? or is the government going to shoulder this? And what will they do if the government is not willing to shoulder the expense for extra safety?

I believe that the new requirements needed for nuclear plants will mean the early retirement of a lot of plants. This is important, because it is when we fully “internalize” the externalities of nuclear plants (including disposal of nuclear wastes) that can we see if they are indeed economically feasible.

At the same, other kinds of power plants – from LNG to coal – should also be required to take insurance against possible accidents, as this will really level the playing field when it comes to energy sources.

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Looking for a “God” Particle?

Posted by butalidnl on 18 March 2011

Many people are fascinated by the Large Hadron Collider (LHC), while others are afraid that it would form a black hole that could swallow the earth. Still others question why governments are spending huge amounts of money for the LHC (the LHC cost Euro 7.5 Billion to build, and Euro 1 Billion/year to run).

Let us take the last point first. If we consider that one of the many “byproducts” of CERN (which runs the LHC) is the WWW (right, the Worldwide Web is a CERN invention), and that CERN hasn’t asked for payment for it, I think anyone will agree that CERN has already more than earned the Billions of Euros needed for the LHC, many times over.

The possibility of the LHC forming a blackhole that could swallow the earth is another media hypes. This is simply a fantastic idea that shows how imaginative media people are.

In a sense, the LHC is “cheap”. At $10 billion, it costs as much as a single nuclear power plant, or 9 B-2 bombers, or 1 month of the Afghanistan war.

The LHC is a huge (27 kilometers circumference) circular machine that accelerates protons in opposite directions, and then smashes these together. Why do they do this? Well, simply put, they want to look at the pieces that make up the protons. It is a couple of steps beyond mere “atom smashing”. An atom has protons, neutrons and electrons. A proton (or a neutron) is composed of quarks. The LHC examines what composes quarks.

Finding the Higgs Boson
One of the aims of the LHC is to find the Higgs Boson, which is supposed to be the particle  that gives an atom its mass. Media hype calls this the “God particle”, probably because if it gives matter mass, it is an enormously important particle.  It is a lot sexier to say “God particle” than “Higgs Boson”(or is only me?). But in the end, the Higgs Boson is just another particle that scientists are trying to find.

Why is the Higgs Boson, or anything else that the LHC could discover, important? Well, the discovery of the Higgs Boson will lead to the completion of the “Standard Model” theory of subatomic particles; or if it is not found, this could cause the theory to be replaced by another. Either way, it will lead to the refinement of the theory of subatomic particles. And by doing so, could lead to a whole lot of possible discoveries.

Take for example the graviton (which is the particle/wave that transmits gravity). The anti-graviton (which is predicted by Standard Model) could very well lead to anti-gravity applications, which could be enormously useful. Or, if researchers find out more about Zero Point Energy (ZPE, where matter and anti-matter particles spontaneously come into existence out of nothing), they could discover an inexhaustible form of energy. Or they could discover the “Higgs Singlet”, a derivative of the Higgs Boson, which is predicted to travel through time (Large Hadron Collider: A Time Machine?). Or they could discover other things.

Basic science leads to technological applications, eventually. The Gene Theory made possible DNA profiling, Genetic Manipulation, even traditional breeding. The electromagnetic theory made possible electric motors, TVs and computers. And relativity theory paved the way for nuclear power plants and radiation treatments for cancer. So also with the Standard Model – it could come out with all kinds of nice applications which would be of immense importance for mankind.

Working on basic scientific discoveries does not lead immediately to technological inventions; but they do lead to that eventually. Who would have thought at the time that Newton’s experiments with a prism to create a spectrum of light would eventually lead to the radio, mobile phone or computers?

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Filipinos Prefer Lighter Skin

Posted by butalidnl on 16 March 2011

The government is trying to crack down on skin whiteners which contain mercury, since these are poisonous for people. (Ban sought on Mercury-Laden Skin Whiteners) However, I think that most skin whiteners are (almost per definition)  harmful to our bodies, and thus should be discouraged or banned.

Why people would want to whiten their skin does not seem to be logical. But many Filipinos want to do it, and are willing to spend well-earned money to buy skin whiteners. They think that having fairer skin means that they become more beautiful and also more successful.

Always a Health Risk
Skin whitening almost always comes at a risk. And as shown by the present issue of mercury in skin whitening products, there are things that could go into these products that are quite harmful. Mercury, in the form of mercury chloride  or ammoniated mercury, as the active ingredient in some products could accumulate in the human body.  Mercury is a toxic substance, which could cause a lot of nasty diseases.

Skin whitening, in its essence, means that something is done to lower the skin’s production of melanin. There are inherent dangers when you artificially inhibit melanin. Reducing the skin’s natural production of melanin may result in the thinning of the skin, distorting the production of protective oils in the skin, and may even cause skin cancer. Some products have been shown to cause leukemia in animal tests. There is also the danger that using these products would reduce melanin production in spots on the skin, and result in an uneven skin coloration.

If evolution was allowed to fully take its course, people in the Philippines “should” be darker skinned, on the average. Skin tone evolves to fit the amount of sunlight that strikes a place, and this is mainly dependent on a country’s latitude (i.e. how far north, or south, it is). It is a balance between having too dark skin (which inhibits Vitamin D production) and too light skin (which limits folic acid production). Because of this, people with either too light or too dark skin will be less healthy, making them produce less offspring. But nowadays, cultural forces are a greater influence in skin coloration: people could stay more indoors, put on more clothing,  use skin whiteners or take Vitamins.

Filipinos are not simply divided into light-skinned and dark-skinned. There is a whole range of skin tones, and there are many people of intermediate shades, and whose skin tone is variable depending on exposure to sunlight. Some people would be considered by some people to be light-skinned, but by others to be dark skinned. The border is rather arbitrary. So, in a sense, people could conceivably move from being dark skinned to light skinned by using skin whiteners, and by avoiding exposure to sunlight.

Role Models
Lighter skinned people seem to be more successful in the Philippines. Just take a look at the lighter skins of the country’s lawmakers and movie stars.  All the country’s presidents were light skinned; Jose Rizal was light skinned, as were most of the country’s heroes.

The whitening drive does not necessarily stem from a colonial mentality. People are not trying to look Caucasian. If they did, there would be a run to have blond hair, and to have Caucasian eyes, but we see little or none of this. There are enough light skinned Filipinos with Chinese blood; so the thing is to be light-skinned, and not necessarily Western looking.

The problem is the role models in the country itself. Being light skinned seems to be one of the ingredients to success; and that is why people will do their best to become lighter-skinned. This light-skin bias is bad for a number of reasons. First, it makes it more difficult for dark-skinned Filipinos to succeed. Venus Raj and Nora Aunor are the exceptions, but they are too few of them. Even for men: take the jokes aimed against VP Binay, because of his dark skin; it is as if Binay doesn’t deserve the post because of his skin.

Light-Skin Bias
Historically, richer people of Spanish or Chinese descent chose light skinned partners. Other members of the elite also did so. Thus, there are a lot of light skinned rich people. Thus, the natural bias, becomes (in a sense) “natural selection”, with lighter skin being selected.Light-skin bias happens when companies hire new people. If two candidates are equally qualified, the company will probably select the lighter skinned one, who would be said to be more “presentable”.  And this slight bias continues upwards the corporate ladder; so that only the best-qualified dark skinned employees get promoted, while a lot of less qualified lighter skinned ones go through. The light skin bias becomes a self-fulfilling prophecy.

There is a light-skin bias even as early as when students are in school. Light skinned students are expected to perform better; and since many of the richer students are light-skinned to begin with, this bias reinforces itself. Thus, even though there are probably more dark skinned Filipinos, they make up a minority when they go to college.
My nephew, who is dark-skinned, noted that 40 out of 142 students (or about 28%) in his batch of Medicine students are dark skinned.  I suspect that this pattern would be similar in other courses. And this is even before the students enter the job market.

While not everything can be attributed to the color of the skin – class pays also a big part – skin color does matter. But all this is not reflective of the talent pool of the Philippines. There are a lot of talented darker skinned people, and if the Philippines were “color blind”, it would be able to utilize more of its population optimally. As it is, a lot of people end up under-utilized.

Another bad result of the light-skin bias is that people do unhealthy things just to have lighter skin. In addition to using skin whiteners, they also exercise less outdoors, and even use umbrellas to protect themselves from the sun. Luckily, there are vitamin supplements which can compensate for any Vitamin D deficiencies. But avoiding outdoor exercise leads to other problems like obesity, high blood pressure, etc.

What to Do
Skin Whiteners. The first thing is to “crack down” on skin whiteners. There should be a strict ban of whiteners with mercury. Pharmacies or other stores selling these should be punished, up to the point of closing them.

At the same time, there should be a tax on skin whitening products. These have no real added value, and people could very well live without them. They should be subject to a “sin tax” of sorts.

Anti-bias measures. Companies and schools should be instructed to correct for the light-skin bias. When a candidate who is turned down has darker skin, the company should take a critical look to ensure that it is not due to light-skin bias.

There could be an advertising campaign to push through the idea that dark skinned people are beautiful, and “presentable”. Casting agencies for models and movies etc should be required to have a minimum percentage of dark skinned models/actors.

Outdoor Exercise. Outdoor exercise should be encouraged. Ordinary people should be encouraged to take a stroll every now and then. Cycling and jogging should be promoted. And people should learn to walk more, instead of riding a jeepney for a journey of 100-200 meters.

Posted in Philippine economics, Philippine education, Philippine politics, Philippines, solar | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment »