(We warn our dear readers that the foregoing analysis by our resident economist, e-kunomista, is not for the squeamish and fainthearted. It is rated PG35).
The depreciation of the once-mighty dollar is endangering the country’s economic growth, fueled the past few years by remittances from overseas Filipino workers, now fighting a Sisyphean and losing battle against the forces of globalization over which they have no control: the more they sweat, the less the value of their labor.
What is to be done?
The answer is right under, and slightly above our very noses, and even in our gut. We have been contemplating the story of justice secretary Raul Gonzales, who, we have been told by sources in the Makati Medical Center, had a healthy pair of kidneys until these rejected the body of their owner. Fortunately for Mr. Gonzales, one kidney of his loyal driver shared the sentiment of its master.
We do not wish the good secretary ill, for we normally do not make fun of the senile—we say this with all sincerity because we cannot be compelled to take a polygraph test— but we have been told his other internal organs might follow his discarded kidneys, politicized and now making a lot of political noise in that hospital. He has also said that he has just come back from hell, and if there really is a hell, we say, practice makes perfect. But so much for Mr. Gonzales, suffice it to say, we wish him a more speedy recovery.
Filipinos, especially the poor and unemployed, have an excess of internal organs and useless limbs, and if only these could be sold at fair market value, we can be well on our way to a more equitable and sustainable development, using a more visceral interpretation of human capital touted by the World Bank.
Equitable because there is no need for a trickle-down effect, as market development, on the supply side, should start with the third decile in the income distribution. We estimate that the kidneys of these people alone would lead to an immediate 5% reduction in poverty incidence. But, you ask, is that sustainable?
Silly question, for biochemistry teaches us that the lighter the body mass, the lower is the energy required for its sustenance—addressing as well escalating petroleum prices. Secondly, why stop at kidneys? We can proceed with slivers of liver, which have regenerative capabilities. More importantly, we can reduce the digestive tracts, the source of the nasty gastric juices responsible for those embarrassing hunger statistics. There seems to be no scarcity of serendipity here, for we can also encourage the sale of testicles to address the population problem. Read the rest of this entry »