A POLITICAL SYSTEM DEFINES ITS BUREAUCRACY:
That the Philippine government has consistently failed in satisfying the needs and growing expectations of the Filipino people is a fact rather than a perception. What is widel y perceived however, is that such failure of government is only due to the inefficiency of its bureaucracy to produce and deliver public goods and services. To accept the perception that the inefficiency of the bureaucracy is the main culprit in the failu re of government is to grant the dichotomization of the orientation of governance and the administration of its affairs.
The form and substance of the bureaucracy as the main machinery of government is heavily defined by the latter's policies and politics. It cannot be expected to produce and deliver goods and services corresponding to the needs of the people if the policies of government are anti-people. In the same manner that the bureaucracy cannot operate differently and independently of the ills of th e Philippine political system.
A political system is based on its economic foundation thus it is beyond doubt that economic power makes political power. In a semi-colonial and semi-feudal society such as the Philippines, it is easy to conclude that the fo reign investors, their local counterparts such as the big compradors and landlords, who are the main players in the economy, control the state thru their cohorts in government. That it is their business, to effectively manage the affairs of the bureaucrac y as a means and source of graft and corruption for further self-aggrandizement and their perpetuation in power.
The basic issue of the misprioritization and misutilization of the national budget clearly represents that the business of governance depends on the interests of the power holders rather than the people they govern. The coming of the public debt aspect in the 80s worsens the misprioritization of government's annual budget in favor of foreign debt payment allocations and is usually followed by t he national defense budget, the sum of which account for about three-fourths (3/4) of its grand total.
As the foreign debt payment becomes automatic the government went into deficit spending, in order to correct this, the International Monetary Fund-World Bank (IMF-WB) prescribed the Structural Adjustment Program (SAP) which included the austerity measures in further reducing the subsidy for social services and less amount for development programs. Such limitation is aggravated by the wastage of substantia l amount, about 30% of that which goes to operations, that is pocketed by the politicians and the high bureaucrats thru wholesale graft and corruption and the pork-barrel system (fund allocations for congressmen's/senators' pet/patron ghost projects).
The acts of government to join the General Agreement on Tariff and Trades-World Trade Organization (GATT-WTO), the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC), both as instruments of imperialism, is to completely subjugate the interest of the Filipino people to the intensification of exploitation as the crisis of imperialism worsens.
The corresponding inter-related policies of liberalization, deregulation, and privatization are meant to expand and intensify the opening of the Philippine economy to the insatia ble thirst for super profits of foreign monopolies. As the same policies are cornerstones of the Medium-Term Philippine Development Plan (MTPDP) Philippines 2000 of the Ramos government, it is expected to worsen the delivery of public goods and services as such shall be left to the manipulation of the foreign investors and local capitalists.
It is not surprising therefore, that the neverending saga of measures to attain a passing mark on accountability, efficiency, effectiveness, and economy of the bur eaucracy has far been records of misaccomplishments of set objectives. Such strategies of reorganization, decentralization, integrated area development, the public estate system, and participative delivery system to reform the bureaucracy have and cannot individually and all together address the misperformance of public organizations to function as expected by the public.
Yet the government has conveniently blamed the inefficiency of its bureaucracy and reversely used efficiency as reason to design scheme s which in the end really result to the benefit of the politicians and the high bureaucrats. In reality, the bureaucracy and its efficiency is reduced to whose interests it serves. As a means to attain the end, it is trapped in a vicious cycle of being us ed to serve for the benefit of its power holders and then blamed its failure to public sector workers in serving the interest of the people.
Thus, once again, the effort of the Ramos administration to re-engineer the bureaucracy cannot escape the scrutiny that it is indeed another scheme to effectively pursue their own interests and that of their foreign masters. Their so called new orientation of governnance towards less government and more private initiatives is by the way the best design fit to impleme nt the three intertwined policies of liberalization, deregulation, and privatization or the Philippines 2000.