The Death of Metro Manila

Traffic, both southbound and northbound, at 9:00 PM. CALLING MMDA.

Traffic, both southbound and northbound, at 9:00 PM. CALLING MMDA.

Is Manila poor because it is ugly? Or is it ugly because it is poor?

Is it poor? Is it ugly?

Is it dead? Is it dying? Or does its chaos suggest it is a thriving, beautiful, and living metropolis?

It is no denying that the capital city of the Philippine archipelago is dying. It is one of the best examples of urban degeneration, one that is disintegrating at record speed. Despite the so-called economic boom the government and the middle class trumpet, the sad and disturbing reality is the capital of the Philippines represents the many contradictions and sad realities this society is facing.

It is unfortunate that Metro Manila, which is the capital of the Philippines, is the PERFECT PLACE to see that which can appall any visitor or resident. A capital is meant to be the SHOWCASE of everything that is EXCELLENT and BEAUTIFUL in a country. Unfortunately, most often than not, what people see here is not the best in Filipinos but the BEAST in us.

Earlier today (this blog entry has undergone various versions, but I wish to remind everyone of 17 June 2013: http://www.abs-cbnnews.com/video/nation/metro-manila/06/17/13/heavy-rains-cause-floods-traffic-jams-anew-metro-manila), thousands (oh, but Metro Manila has MILLIONS of residents) experienced awful traffic congestion due to flooding throughout the metropolis. For hours, tired students, professionals, workers and perhaps, tourists, were left helpless as the city’s major highways were left on standstill. There was an obvious and disappointing absence in terms of the presence of Policemen, traffic enforcers and members of the usually pesky Metro Manila Development Authority (MMDA). Drivers (and their passengers) were asked to be simply “patient”.

Metro Manila is dying, and it’s dying every day.

With what happened earlier, expect NO CHANGE whatsoever to take place. Both motorists and the government will not change. And this is perhaps the perfect equation for a city to die.

The tremendous volume of vehicles in Metro Manila is appalling, and it is an alarming signal of the values of the people. Thousands of Metro Manila (or Laguna, Cavite, Bulacan, or some nearby province) residents buy cars without (YES! WITHOUT!) considering their cars’ effects on the environment, traffic congestion or even urban plan. Many (NOT ALL, OKAY?!!) Filipinos, upon reaching a particular fortune, the first thing they do is buy a car. Brand new, second-hand, duty-free – whatever. Basta magka-kotse. Some car owners have two vehicles but do not have a single plot of land named to them. Some have four cars but do not have ample parking space for these! No judgment here as people have EVERY RIGHT to spend their hard-earned money on what they own and it is not for me to dictate or even suggest how they should spend this. But I believe I can at least comment my observations and experiences.

The values or practices or even political environment of the Filipinos do not facilitate healthy urban plan.

First, there is the backward stigma on commuting. For Filipinos, a sign of wealth and prosperity is the car. Commuting is for the poor. Commuting is scary. And to some degree, these are in fact, true. I myself commute. I know perfectly how it feels to be cramped among many sweaty and tired people inside train coaches that do not have aircon. I know how it feels being herded into buses that are full. I know how it feels riding a jeepney that barkers call-out as “pang-siyaman” when it’s good for 7 persons. Government has to beef up and do something with regard to public safety in public transport. (please stop commenting that I don’t take public transport. I do.)

Secondly, Filipinos just love appearances. We are afflicted with the disease of being an impressionable lot. A nice car can impress people, and so it is a necessary asset. We are so conscious of what other people might say that’s why we always buy the latest cars. We’re like the half-brothers of people from Los Angeles. I remember my French foreign exchange friends and they were really astonished and taken aback by the cars being driven by my schoolmates in college. They asked me often too why it’s always traffic in almost every major thoroughfare in Metro Manila. Like them, I am curious “saan ba galing lahat ng coche na yan? saan sila galing at saan sila papunta?”

A classic example of our fetish for external appearances is when we have cars, we want to be fetched by our drivers right at the footstep of the mall, school, hospital or church we are visiting. Who cares about the long queue of cars? I want to ride my car from where I am standing. I won’t walk to my car. The car must make its way to me… and I will ride my car at my own glacial pace or my kids’ yayas will put on their polo uniforms only AFTER alighting from the car, putting powder on the kids’ backs.

Thirdly, there is the global disease that is materialism. The materialistic mind-set propels mall developers to continue destroying our cityscape and construct their mammoth developments. Look at a certain mall in Ortigas. Not content with the chaos it has caused for decades, it is now constructing another horrendous edifice right smack along EDSA!

This materialistic mindset has spawned so many sins in our urban lives: the further subdividing of our cities, distinguishing places for the rich (and feeling rich) and the poor, the worsening pollution, envying one’s neighbor, why our wastage! Capitalism indeed propels the world’s financial development, but let’s ask ourselves deeper questions: is that what matters most? the economy? Is buying and selling really how the world works?

This condominium trend spells the sure death of once genteel Manila. Are these high-rises all perfectly suited for our geographical needs, the Philippines being located at the Pacific Ring of Fire? And with the trauma the West continues to face due to its real estate crisis, is the Philippines fully-prepared for a possible bubble economy explosion? Are all the rooms in all the condos being built actually PAID?

And then, there is our frustrating government. Not much discussion on this.

People spit anywhere, vendors put up their stalls on sidewalks and roads are not liberated. Our airports continue to employ inefficient staff and do not have airconditioning. Our cities continue to flood and billboards, obscene and pleasing, are everywhere. What are our local officials doing? And where is the national government’s interest in the genuine development of our capital? Where?

Metro Manila is dead. Its wide open avenidas are gone. Its tree-lined streets are nothing more but memories. Its people are so infatuated with the lives of celebrities and the latest gadgets that they forget to notice that their capital is dead. And the apathy of the educated and the elite is disturbing.

Compare Bangkok with Manila and you will find many contrasts amidst the similarity of traffic. They have a river that is utilized and their street foods, at the very least, look clean. The only “street foods” that look safe here are the ones being in MRT/LRT stations or in that UP parking lot. Have you visited our wet markets? Except for Marikina’s, as far as I know, wet markets can be really dim, smelly and well, yes, wet.

I do not know how we can list all of Metro Manila’s problems right now but I am telling you, Manila is facing a horrible end if people and the government do not change. Let us not forget that history tells us that “The Big One” is about to shake Metro Manila any moment now. How prepared our government is, we do not know. How prepared the people are, we also don’t know.

Basta you experienced earlier how our city’s main highways immobilized thousands upon thousands of persons. It gives you the perfect idea how Metro Manila will be when in a crisis hits.

Our city is dying, and nothing major will change. After Ondoy and Habagat, NOTHING has changed. Universities continue to allow thousands of cars to enter their premises. Schools almost encourage their students to cause traffic by allowing them to dismount their vehicles one-by-one at the door’s footsteps. Our heritage buildings are being sold and demolished. Our bay is dirty, our rivers are dead, our cities flood and the air we breathe is poisonous and toxic. There are so many street children and condominiums and malls are being built like mushrooms. Vehicles of all types daily exhaust the cityscape while obscene and materialistic billboards flourish in our ugly city. Metro Manila is dying.

Where is culture? Where is music? Where are our open spaces? Where are the scenic riverbanks? Where are the vistas of Laguna de Bay, of Manila Bay, of Sierra Madre, why, even of the Pasig? We have so many problems in urban planning and cultural preservation that we ought to impose drastic measures to rescue our city.

About hechoayer

Things made yesterday still influence us until today. Things made today will influence us tomorrow. Things of the essence such as faith, culture, food, music and values should never disappear nor eroded by the times. Instead, these must be recorded, lived and shared. Something made yesterday - hecho ayer - can be tomorrow's saving grace. Never ignore the past.
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159 Responses to The Death of Metro Manila

  1. JJ says:

    are you referring to the entire Metro Manila (17 cities and 1 municipality) or the city of Manila – which is the capital city?

  2. Caira Tulio says:

    I totally agree with everything you said, however, what I don’t believe is that Metro Manila is COMPLETELY dead. To me, it’s more of a dying person put on life support. There’s still hope.
    I’m actually pretty much aware of the state of the city, but even if I were to act, what can I do? It’s not like I’m a government offical or someone famous. I’m just that “some kid”.

    • hechoayer says:

      It is on life-support. You are right.

    • Could be dying or to me more like a drug addict that keeps going in and out of rehab. Totally hopeless unless someone finds a way to clean him up. There are still patches of habitable areas in QC but it might end up gone as well, what with the mushrooming of condominium development all over the place. Trees are being cut, the only place we have trees are at UP Diliman and La Mesa Eco Park, and with the way land is being leased out in UP that might even be a threat. This is a great article and your comment that MM is completely dead is spot on for some places, where houses are as cramped as the passengers of LRT and MRT on any given day. The comment that it is in life support is also spot on for places where it is beginning to let go of any hope. if other provinces had any sense, i’d make sure to set up perimeter walls around their areas so that no squatters can encroach on them anymore and block off the whole of MM. Just being graphic as to how bad things are with this issue of illegal owners of land.🙂

    • Jo Ann Teh says:

      I believe that if a person will have the will to make a change by starting from themselves, then we can make a difference. You make be “some kid” but that doesn’t mean that you cannot do anything about the situation. It is a collective effort. Imagine if each person will abide the law , practice discipline, and be a responsible citizen, then that would make a great difference. The problem with us is that we follow the norm even though we know that it may be wrong because it is more comfortable. But imagine if many people who wants change will start to act. Yes it is easier to be apathetic. But if we really want change, it must start within ourselves. We need to take risks. We must act and the right time is now.

  3. Fortunato Nolasco Grandeza III says:

    good day! im a normal and average Filipino, born in Manila, lived in Tondo, in Pasay, in Makati, transferred to Las pinas, now in Dasmarinas for studies, i would weep whenever talks like this, Manila, the old times and the Philippines, pearl of the orient ,, is gone,, sometimes i ask myself why, and would blame things on others, the squatters, the police, the officials, the government, then i would ask again myself, what about me?, what do i have to do with this, what is my share of the fault.. then answers like maybe because, i got too clouded with things of the past memories that i lost grip of the future and present, where decisions are made. yes, maybe Manila is dying, but as long as it has people like you or people with sentiments like ours are living in her domain, Manila can still survive and recover… i believe its still in the policy making and the need for the right person in the cityhalls (not Malacanang right away, since its just Manila).

  4. ronjiedotcom says:

    We just need more efficient and more environment friendly (both for the earth and for humans) mass transportation — i.e. trains — and to be more train-centric. The Tokyo Metropolis is similar to Manila in terms of population density, but traffic isn’t as bad as in Manila, because as you can imagine, they probably have train lines every 2 blocks! I think trains should be the priority in Manila, much less, the whole of the Philippines, and not flyovers. Because, imho, it’s not about wealth that’s why people hate the commute, it’s about comfort, really. I know a lot of well-to-do people who prefer to take the MRT, because it just really beats the traffic down on EDSA. The other problem as I said, is that we’re not train-centric (yet) — like, there should be huge parking buildings adjacent to the train stations so that people can take their cars to the train station and then take the train. I know one guy who, fortunately for him, has a good friend who lives in a subdivision right beside a train station, and so he just drives and parks there then takes the train.

    • star cypress says:

      Yes.. Indeed! need more trains! but it takes decades to complete Yay! corrupts gov’t officials are scary.. they are almost got their interest to… ???:\

    • bystander says:

      Where the heck would you place these trains?

    • A says:

      If we had a transportation system like the ones in Tokyo all of a sudden, it wouldn’t do much of a help after 25 years. It would end up dilapidated and inefficient due to lack of maintenance and over-capacity. It wouldn’t simply work for us because we are not like the Japanese. The Japanese people are disciplined; they value punctuality, cleanliness, order, respect, and honor very much. On the other hand, we Filipinos are the negative counterpart of the Japanese. We settle for mediocrity! With that in mind, we are always late, we have no respect for our surroundings, we consider laws as optional rules, we want instant gratification… I could go on and on with our negative traits that would contribute to the demise of the said transportation system, likewise any infrastructure that we have or will have in the future. Without discipline, we cannot move forward as a nation.

      p.s. I have been to Japan. I have seen women in high heels running and men in tux coats sprinting during rush hour peaks. After rush hours, the sidewalks and the roads are deserted. These are all observed in a business district in Osaka.

    • ronjiedotcom, really admiring your train centric claims here! New York City, Chicago, and Tokyo, what do they have in common? Highly dense cities with efficient transportation system. I had lived in Chicago IL and cars are difficult to park in downtown as you would have to go to several blocks of streets to find parking structures and will have to and pay hourly rates or daily rates just to put your vehicle into safety. Ok, what does it do to the city? It makes you ride subways and buses eventually as it is rather efficient than driving to a long stroll of I-55 North and South bound Chicago much like EDSA. The only deal with this is that before you get out and go, you need to plot your destination and have it already affixed before you hop on a subway line. It concerns me that the concentration of the trains are only in Metro Manila, it has not gone to Antipolo, Cogeo, Marikina, and several suburban regions of the metro. What ERAP is doing is right, he had eliminated the bus lines from the metro and should eliminate the Jeepney’s next. Create more transit stations every Avenue, which if the city code is correct back home is three streets away is an Avenue. A hop on hop off city bus needs to be created and patronize as you would be able to use it to transfer to different destinations. A ticketing center should be created and a bus/subway card should be implemented and needed to be conjoined. Jeepney’s may be the essence of transportation system back home, but it is also the thing of the past. We should consider eliminating them in roads as it adds to the monstrous traffic jam we already have. An implemented bus route line with frequent bus stops at every avenue and transit center should be created. This transit center connects the city buses to the subways which if Manila will have will create a big help. As it looks, we have an “L System” or elevated tracks because of the traffic in the streets, this is ok but should have more of this connection trips every 15 minutes. As well wishers and travelers don’t want to be late from whatever agenda they do. Metro Manila is Ok, its not as bad as it looks. Traffic is there because it is a bustling city. Get over it!

      • figsch says:

        I guess you have a car and you’re greater than 8,000/month good for a family of three to say all of these things about the ineesentiality of jeepneys. Absurd.

      • figsch, I think you did not read well what Hector was saying. He said, that the Jeepney should be replaced by a more efficient bus / bus system.

      • Ivan says:

        I concur with Hector. I don’t think that traffic jams are a sign that a city is dying. The worst traffic jams I experienced were getting in and out of NY and Paris on a regular weekday. As a reference, I was stuck in cab from Makati to San Juan for three hours during that rainy evening last month.

  5. Manila Headbanger says:

    Kid, you are too pissed off. STAHP. STAHP NOW.

  6. Sugi says:

    I’m no expert at urban planning, I’m simply an economics student in the UK having lived in Manila for three years through high school (and visit every year). Whilst its true Manila is bad, it’s not as bad as Jakarta (where I am from). Everything is spot on on this article, perhaps too much weight on people’s actions however, I would place more weight on government. There’s a high need to lower corruption and higher investment into public services – public transport for example in order to keep manila growing – get examples from Tokyo and London. Investment into public services stimulates economies and create jobs. Imagine Manila with an underground!
    Whilst people here are excessive with their 5 cars on their driveways (extremely excessive to just loop hole around the coding system) if the government creates such a capitalist environment the people will respond in such a way. After reading this article If one guy becomes more environmentally conscious then they will lose out in utility, whilst everyone else stays the same. And things wont change over night, so why would one change if it just decreases their utility. I mean YOLO right? (you only live once. and you wouldnt wanna live less than everyone else around you).
    so more weight on government contribution I think. They need to invest more, and clamp down and make things more strict, and raise awareness for the environment. In England its ridiculously strict – taxes, insurance, vehicle emissions restrictions etc constrict you from owning 5 cars or something ridiculous, and everybody is environmentally conscious. It makes for a more level playing field, not so capitalist, and with tax on emissions, vehicles etc, as well as development of a good public transportation system (trains and buses etc) its cheaper to actually take public transport as opposed to driving everywhere. But the government doesn’t care, too much corruption and capitalism, supporting only the rich (i.e. skyway being available only to the rich, is not a solution).
    Drastic change is needed (understatement) – tbh I dont see it happening, along with a MASSIVE capital investment into public transport services (dont see this happening either). Are any of philippines’ public transport subsidized by the government? I dont know much about it but all I see are jeepneys, taxis and buses that are probably paid for by the men that drive them.
    It’s not only with transport. but that was the main focus of this article. obviously urban planning involves education, hospitals etc which also require the same focus and investments from the government. I just don’t see it happening. sad truth.

  7. Aileen says:

    Thank you for your article. I agree with the many points that you said (even with your conclusion that Manila is dying – I’m with you), but not on the part about private cars.

    If you have been commuting, you yourself would know IT IS dangerous. IT IS SCARY. Have you experienced the jeepney you’re riding stop in the middle of EDSA, no less, so that you can get off? And when you ask the driver, “Manong, pwede pong pakitabi – baka masagasaan ako,” the driver and the other passengers would quip, “Ang arte naman!” Have you experienced riding a bus so full that your face is already so close to the windshield? Have you lined up for the train and wait for 30 minutes just to get on an already full coach? Please don’t tell me those things aren’t scary. Have you experienced having a sister who was about to ride a jeepney (that is on the jeepney stop) but was suddenly hit by a swerving bus, and that almost costed her her right leg? My mother, who I could confidently bet to be the simplest person in the world, would always tell us to commute even if we have a car – “malapit lang naman ang pupuntahan, mas matipid pa”. But after my sister’s accident, she’s all for us driving. So please don’t say that wanting to own a car is just for show. Has it not occurred to you that it’s also for convenience? I think your generalization was hasty and shallow.

    Even the “less poor” way of commuting – the cab – doesn’t spare you from danger. So please don’t criticize the people if they would want to have their own car. Believe me, it’s a struggle to drive with our traffic jams – but you’d rather do that. Than to risk your wallet, cellphone, comfort, and safety. If only we have a more efficient public transportation system, walkable sidewalks, and less pollution, people would commute more.

    ” And the apathy of the educated and the elite is disturbing. They either simply rant on social media or continue to post the things they ate or bought as if nothing is happening.”

    I don’t know where you’re from, but it’s the same right here. No offered solutions, whatsoever. Just rants. And judgments. I don’t expect you to come up with solutions, of course not. But you just did the same thing you despised.

    • hechoayer says:

      Dear Aileen,

      This blog was written on a day when I experienced one of the worst traffic scenarios in the Metro. This was written in haste, for the sake of rhetoric. Please do not read too deeply into the lines regarding private car-owners as it is first, indeed, a generalization. Secondly, this was an impression made upon me by the circle I revolve in. And what is it to you if this entry is a rant entry? Were you slighted?

      And what do you know about me? I do feel sorry after reading on the accident but please do be so kind not to suggest of my lack of understanding. Again, I didn’t mean this to be a serious, academic study but a mere rant.

      • Aileen says:

        Thank you for your reply and for admitting that it is indeed a hasty generalization. Though I admit that there are Filipinos, and people in general, who just buy cars for show, I guess it just pulled a personal string when you didn’t acknowledge that there are people who NEED cars. And so I could not help but really read deeply into it. I hope you understand that, too.

        It actually didn’t matter to me if you ranted on your own blog (that is your right, as I also rant on my own blog), but it was just ironic to me that you ranted and wrote as well that you don’t like those who rant.

        Please note that on my last paragraph, I disclaimed to not know you. So I really didn’t assume anything about what you do. All I talked about was how this entry was a rant on social media (which you also admitted to). That’s it. And, it’s great that you are doing all those things. That’s really good.

        Anyway, at the end of it all, we just really want a better place. It could really get more and more frustrating each day. I hope you (and I, and everybody else) will not experience such inhumane traffic condition again.

      • psalm says:

        I think the writer did imply about the reason of convenience of owning cars than commuting. It’s like he commented on himself the possible comments that might be thrown on him. And true enough, you just expounded what he said by sighting examples.

        Just observing though

    • Jake says:

      Metro Manila, as of now, doesn’t have a great public transportation system thus making your argument, sometimes having a car is needed, acceptable or even true. But then do you have a good picture of all the private cars in Metro Manila? If we say that having a car is needed,then we should also ask:
      -“What car is needed?” Are we buying the most economic car out there? The most fuel-efficient? 2-doors? 4-doors? 16-seats? How many cars should one own? Does someone need to have 2 sedans or 1 van?
      -“When to use your car?” Do you know that there are some who use their car for a 200m round trip just to buy some snacks? Do you know that there are some who use different cars even when they are going in the same direction at the same time?
      -“How to use the car?” Speed? Maintenance? Driving? Traffic rules and regulation? These are just some factors that are neglected by some when using a car. Some doesn’t even know these.

    • Hala Ka says:

      I was once told by a friend regarding one of our friends whom I do not really know deeply. Her family is rich, and believed to be millionaires. I don’t know how my other friend knew about their ways, but this is what he said. My rich friend’s family buy cars always to add to liabilities to lower the tax they pay. Understandable if you consider the idiocy of the corrupt pigs in the government. However, think of the consequence when they start selling those useless cars. Won’t they sell them for a lower price, making those cars affordable for some wanting the flair of having beautiful cars? There is just too many people who care not about anyone else but themselves. Our people just take the YOLO slogan too much, to the point that it results to some negative consequences to other people. If people just think about every consequence their every action would produce to themselves and for the other people, maybe, just maybe we can have some progress in this country. I abhor those people who always say “you only live once, do what you want and do not regret doing it”.

    • fafatoots says:

      typical two girls’ rant hehe

  8. Keep writing. This is nice!

  9. Juan says:

    Grabe traffic lang dying city na kaagad. Why is it only all about the physical aspects of the Philippines. If it’s over populated then that’s because people love it here and who cares when it’s more fun in the Philippines. Research on the statistics of having happy citizens in your country, if I’m not mistaken we’re one of the highest. Happiness matters too

    • hechoayer says:

      Hello Juan,

      Please read and understand the context of this entry. You can also walk around Metro Manila and see that it is indeed dying. There is no integrated urban plan visible or progressing that would suggest that Metro Manila has a soul – a soul that it respects and cares for. Traffic isn’t the only point here, but it is a major factor. Traffic reduces our streets but nothing more as concrete thoroughfares. We have yet to see roads dedicated for pedestrians – or even sidewalks FOR PEDESTRIANS. Can you walk and stroll in the night and see beautiful things unless you’re in private enclaves like The Fort? If you’ve been to Bangkok – which is more ALIVE – Manila or Bangkok? They also have bad traffic there, but with all honesty, what is more vibrant?

    • A says:

      I have a theory why we, the Filipinos, are considered happy people.

      Let me tell you the story on how I came up with this theory. We had a design plate that specified the old G.S.I.S. building as our site for the project so I had to go to the city hall in order to inquire about the said building. I was with a friend when I visited the city hall of Manila for the first time. With every building that I first step into, I would observe everything- from floor to ceiling, and from finishing to furniture and fixtures. To sum up my observations, put together the jewels and filth of Manila (mostly filth) and then translate it in to a building and call it the city hall of Manila. While pondering upon my observations which are negative at most, I started to feel depressed. My friend also became depressed as I was sharing my musings with her while waiting inside the city hall.

      So here’s the theory. Thinking about all the problems of Manila, seeing them right in front of you and then realizing that you are surrounded by it and finally knowing that you cannot do anything about it will truly make you depressed. Having an open eye in Manila and constantly taking in all the negativity that you experience, especially if you are living those experiences every day, will give you thoughts about ending it the easy way. In order to fight the negativity that surrounds us, we would turn a blind eye to it. We then tend to ignore the issues and problems at hand and look for other things that would distract us from the grim and bleak reality. We escape reality through our gadgets, through noon-time variety shows, through the soap operas, and through showbiz. We rely mostly on these things for our happiness, things that are mediocre, shallow, and empty. A lot of Filipinos will tell you that they are happy because of their complacency and their acceptance of mediocrity brought about by turning a blind eye and by rejection of reality. People in other countries derive their happiness in reality, not from delusions. Even the poorest man in Moscow can taste grandeur only by waiting for his train.

    • aning says:

      actually, it is not only traffic, the pollution, population…the quality of life in Metro Manila is so bad that as a Filipina living in the states I can see it with a much better perspective. When everybody brags about the growing economy, that is all good and dandy but who is really benefiting from this economic boom? the rich, the poor will always be poor with no relief in sight. The Filipinos in general are very self destructive; case in point; most of the Filipinos here in the States will not buy anything made in the Philippines, they would rather buy substandard very low quality items made from sweatshops in Pakistan or Bangladesh rather than from the Philippines. Why? every time i go shopping I always buy made in the Philippines when available

      Now going back to Manila, look at the crowd and see how most are disrespectful, arrogant and very cocky. I can go on and on but i think you get the picture. Very destructive indeed. Plus, the morals are so out of whack, imagine, status symbol being measure by the number of mistresses???

      very depressing. So Juan, please reflect on all this and take a good look at Manila and tell me that the people are really happy. I think not…

      • You live in the states and you call people living in the philippines disrespecful, arrogant and cocky? How arrogant and cocky of you to say such thing. Maybe living there made you that way since Americans are more arrogant.

      • aning says:

        to coy villareal, well, although I am very low key, the filipinos by nature are racist and very arrogant. they like to dish it out but when it is thrown back at them they are easily offended. When I am in the philippines and speak to the people in my natural way , I am perceived as arrogant…why because I am straight forward, no beating around the bush. I guess you are a classic example of a person who has an onion skin. You can’t accept an objective / constructive criticism.

        You are from La salle so you are educated and perhaps even at the high bracket of the spectrum, I want you to reflect on how you treat the people below you, maids, drivers, subordinates, etc…yeah, I figured, you look down at them, right. We in the States may be cocky and arrogant as per your reply but at least we give each other the respect and dignity.

  10. chris dan cruz says:

    that’s because commuting has become an even bigger hassles than it was in the 90s. manlolokong drivers, holdaper na co passenger, at pagkalayu layong sakayan

    • chris dan cruz says:

      that’s why people buy cars. not out of terrible laziness or other shallow reasons. one wouldnt save and then spend hundreds of thousands out of a whim. pinagipunan yan kasi nakakainis na yung sistema ng public transport natin

  11. Depends on how you look at things. Current events will show you that there are cities around the world that are more troubled than Manila, and they haven’t been declared “dead”. In many ways, Manila is very much alive. The fact that there is congestion/traffic means that people have work and businesses are still thriving. The Manila that used to be may have already been gone, and systems here rarely work and it sucks because we are always inconvenienced. Believe me, I despise the situation and no doubt it adds to the stress in our lives. However, we all already know that Manila is very problematic, there is nothing new about it. So my question is–and this is an honest question–what has this article done to alleviate the condition you complain about? Or is it simply that: a complaint? How different are you from everyone else who simply whines about, if not directly contribute to, the ugliness of the city if the best you can do is write an article that prematurely announces Manila “dead”?

    • Jake says:

      Current evens will also show you that Manila is light-years away from the top. Manila is very much alive? YES. Vehicles honking. Street vendors on the sidewalks. So much pollution. And more to include on that list. Can’t people have work without traffic jams? Can’t businesses thrive without congestion on the road? How much time, and eventually money,are lost due to traffic jams? This article might/should be able to be a wake up call for some and it might spark a change Also what has your comment do to alleviate the situation you are defending? You read this and commented because it somehow perked your interest.

      “Prevention is better than cure.”

      • asdasmos says:

        I will give you an example of a dead city.

        Be grateful we live in a manila of opportunity unlike before. There are no simple solutions to these problems, and will take years. Sadly, the change wont come from you or anyone here. It will come when a country or corporation see that they can make money doing it and if the politicians get ‘their’ share.

        Business as usual.

        “Prevention is better than cure.” – LOL
        Who will listen to you? How many people make livings from transport? How will the mmda enforce any of this? It will go on until gas gets extremely expensive, period.

        Until then, all the dreamers can suck on an exhaust pipe and fantasize about greener pastures.

      • Did you prefer that I dwell on the misery of this city? Sorry, you must enjoy doing that, but I wouldn’t spend most of my time merely complaining about the situation. I have lived here my entire life. I’ve visited cities abroad much more developed, so yes, I know how far off Manila is from being the best. I don’t expect it to be. Yet I chose to make a living here at the moment, that includes having to deal with the problems, and trying to do as little damage as possible, and help in little ways I can. Like I said, I am aware and am affected by the situation, just like many of us, so I don’t know what your problem is with my comment or how it is offensive to you. The way I see it, if you don’t like something, change it. If you can’t change it, deal with it. If you can’t deal with it, then leave. Whining about it only clouds the situation even more, it’s only noise. You mistake a young man’s whining for a “wake-up call”. My question was a wake-up call. And yes, I felt the need to voice out my opinion just like the writer did. I am a part of this city and it disappoints me that there is so much hate, as if that will solve anything.

        Seriously? It is beyond prevention. Even I can see that.

        Moving on…

      • Jake says:

        @asdasmos I will be more grateful if I live in a manila of opportunity of before. And you will just be one of those who will just go with the flow and not the one who will try to change? You must really feel helpless with the situation you are right now. Not even thinking that you can help.
        @stellarsoul00 I don’t know what had got into your mind. I am just trying to reach to good definition of an alive Metro Manila. Can’t an alive Metro Manila a little problematic just like how most of those countries you are praising? If you look at his article on a different point of view,you may consider it a statement of the problems and not just a mere whining. Problems that need to be solved. For me,I don’t want anyone to dwell in this misery. Who would? I don’t want them to ignore this either. I want it to be solved. What will your so called “wake-up call” be? If your question is the “wake-up call” that you are waiting,then what will we should do next based on your question?

  12. I disagree with this. Metro Manila is NOT dead. It may be dying, but still there are still things that Filipinos can do to save our city. No doubt, I would still choose Metro Manila over Jakarta, Ho Chi Minh City, or Phnom Penh. I am proud to live and be a part of this beautiful city of the Philippines, I hope you guys are too!

    • Jake says:

      There are many things that Filipinos can do but are they doing it? Do they have the will to do it? Do they even care to do it? Then,why are you comparing Metro Manila to a more problematic city? Why not compare it to more magnificent city? What is your standards of beauty? What is it that you see beautiful in this area? Can you even state more pros than cons?

    • Militaires Sans Frontieres says:

      Implying that you are proud that your imperial manila is a shithole.

  13. Francis says:

    You have a point, but why dwell on those negative things. The world is always in the process of becoming. Those seemingly negative things that you pointed out are all part of our evolution. Why not just be thankful for all the blessings that you have.

    • hechoayer says:

      Can a person not complain? And who are you anyway to think I am not thankful for the blessings I receive? I mean, do you even know me?

    • Jake says:

      We might need to dwell on those negative things? How long has it been that those problems exist? Most Filipinos tend to just ignore and forget those negative things you are saying and just go on with their own lives. Those are not seemingly negative;they are really negative side of Metro Manila. It also seems that Filipinos are evolving for the worse.

    • Militaires Sans Frontieres says:

      francis stop being a positive pusher. Kita mo na ngang matindi na ang problema ng Maynila gusto mo pa rin i-sugarcoat iyan? Ang hirap kasi sa pinoy dinadaan palagi sa bahala na. Thanks to your sheer ignorance about Manila’s issues, you’re expanding the problems not solving them. At ano iyang mga blessing na pinagsasabi mo? Oh I get it. Yung patuloy na paglabag ng mga PUV sa batas trapiko for example.

    • from hero to zero says:

      dwell on negative thingS? part of our evolution? are you serious? what positive things can you see? new waiting shed? painted pedestrian lanes? yep! were evolving, evolving for worst.

  14. sirjoshuab says:

    I say this is one person’s valid opinion. Freedom of speech and all. Random potshots or instant-claim-to-fame-I-know-stuff-too remarks are just simply out of context. You want your own opinions aired out? Write your own blog, You want to attack the author? Go to the nearest Sandiganbayan or RTC. All in all. A nice, brave piece.

    • Dominic says:

      Dude, let them say whatever they want. You don’t have to defend your post. This is a blog and you have the right to complain and say whatever you want to say, but you also have an active comment box, you’ve given them a space to air out their opinions regarding the topic you posted. People will say what they want to say. I’d just take out this comment box if I’m not willing to accept negative critiques.

  15. I Have a perfect one shot conclusion for this its called building a subway system. To hell with the MRT and LRT which take up valuable roadway and are an eyesore to what were once beautiful wide avenues lined with trees . Build a good subway system (at least 6 lines that connect to the new bus depots) then demolish the LRT and MRT. Then either widen the avenues and highways or create islands of green tranquility in the middle it. Its as simple as that good public transport + wider roads = less traffic, less pollution, more trees and a more visually appealing city.

    • Mamba says:

      Metro Manila is not suited to having a subway system because there is no urban planning

      • A says:

        There was a master plan for Metro Manila which was prepared by Daniel Burnham and then someone decided to build a new capital for the nation…

      • Neither was London when the started putting in their subway. You don’t need urban planning to put in a subway simply because its not on street level. All you need is a place to put steps that lead down into the subway and I terminal building where they start digging from. Heck every LGU can have their own system with one stop that connects to each to the LGU’s around them so that the people can transfer. Lets say your in Manila you have connection station at Rizal Avenue to connect to the Subway of Caloocan, you would also have one on Quezon Avenue to connect to Quezon City’s own Subway, Then on on Aurora for San Juan and another one on Boni for Mandaluyong then one Osmenya to connect Makati. If each LGU developed their own system then the would be 17 lines all interconnected with each creating a very good network of trains transporting people.

    • figsch says:

      Manila’s soil is not suitable for building subways. We get floods because it gets saturated a bit too fast and you’ll need something more solid than that to support your stratfords and trinomas🙂

  16. Alex says:

    Totally agree with you Hechoayer, this city is a like a terminal patient dying of lungs cancer. I would like to add that traffic is also the fault of people and their wrong mentality, especially the lack of discipline in traffic is repulsive…..Again great blog….Sometimes true really hurts.

  17. Blognazi says:

    An observation unrelated to the blog content — It’s funny how the writer goes on the offense when someone posts a dissenting comment, even to the point of proclaiming his “good deeds”. If you can’t take the negative feedback, don’t blog! Otherwise, suck it and take it like a man. Commenters are entitled to their opinions too, just as you are. If you don’t want their responses to your blog, then make it private or disable comments. Just sayin’.

    • hechoayer says:

      Why couldn’t I when I am also being judged for A RANT? I didn’t start the “personal attacks”, okay? I have to, in some sort of way, “defend” myself. That’s the least I could do: list what I try to do.

  18. Merly Tamayo Dima says:

    I concur with what you wrote. Metro Manila is too crowded! There are many things I see that is an issue in Philippines specially the big city! First thing, the government with the people, must realize that there are too many tricycles, jeepneys and buses. No orderliness from the people what so ever! I was born and raised in Philippines and came back to live there after 35 years for almost a year and I could not begin to think how to help the city, the people and the government! To clean up or change the ways of the people and the government, it would take so much work. The first thing must change is the mind set. Everyone, poor or rich must work together to change. Instead of focusing on problems, everyone must focus on possibilities! So, let’s start giving ideas on how to help! There are many things to criticize but let’s stop! Work together for the good of the land and the good of those who (children) will soon lead the future!
    Thank you for your blog!

  19. Anton Anton says:

    Metro Manila a dead city? Is this a joke or a sarcasm? It seems that the writer just woke up from a bad time warp. Needless to say,the writer is simply discouraging people to live in this 21st century megacity, just like any other in the world, so everyone leaves the place and go elsewhere. The comparative nature of the column is somehow baseless,irreal and pointless. If you are so pissed with the traffic, better go out of the city and live elsewhere since you don’t even have a minute clue of what a “dead” or “dying city” means. Let me paraphrase it to you and to all other readers of this blog, what signs are there to say that a city is dying or on the brink of death…

    1. The size of the population is actually going down. “I don’t think this is the case for The Metro.”
    2. The average income of the residents is going down. “This data is quite objective due to the metro’s capitalist nature”
    3. The population is getting older. “I don’t think so.”
    4. People aren’t paying taxes or mortgages. “People are financially healthy and stable, but with disparity between the rich and the poor”
    5. A “signature” building is standing vacant for decades. “Is there any in the metro that has been left abandoned?”
    6. You can’t find any use for the land at all. “Truth is, the metro still needs more land due to the dire need of space.”

    These criteria come from a prestigious university think tank in the US and you can check out the veracity in google if you don’t believe it so😉

    If you feel dreadfully miserable living in The Metro, you have all the right in the world to think of packing up and leave the city, but don’t think you are doing the best decision depending on your lifestyle and business needs.

    • Jake says:

      If you are saying that his message is to discourage people to live in this 21st century megacity of yours,then encourage some more. Baseless? Pointless? Maybe yes,because you have some standards you set your eyes on.

      1. The population in Metro Manila is increasing. But is the quality of the population good enough? Is the increase in the population beneficial to Metro Manila?
      2. Average income of the residents is going down. No questions here.
      3. The population is not getting older. Actually it is getting younger. Young enough that there might not have been enough working population to support it.
      4. People are financially healthy and stable? In your point of view,maybe. Have you ask a pedicab driver in Taft? Have you ask a street vendor in EDSA? Have you ask a homeless family? Is loans a good indicator of being financially healthy and stable?
      5. Does it really have to be a “signatured” building to be in that standard? So if I abandon a 2-storey building in our place,it will not be counted for the qualifications of a “dead/dying city”? Is it also necessary to be abandoned? What of an ill-maintained building? Abused? Incomplete? And yet inhabited?
      6. We may say that every land in the metro is used and the metro need more space. But, does all the land used properly/wisely? Does needing more land a good thing or a bad thing?

  20. Keeping it Real says:

    There is hope. That’s what my late grandfather said 36 years ago when he was much alive. So really, who are we kidding.

  21. hechoayer says:

    Can anyone of you at least tell me how you stumbled upon this blog entry posted weeks ago? Why are people bothering to reply? Am I wrong to assume that people at least agree that METRO MANILA is a PROBLEMATIC place to live in? I don’t get it why people are suggesting for me to live elsewhere when I just ranted and complained. Apologies if you find Metro Manila free of criticism

    • Aileen says:

      A student of mine posted this link. And the reason why I clicked it was because I’m really very pissed with Manila as well (it’s just really the private cars that I found problematic- but that is clarified now🙂 ). Like what I told you, I’m with your conclusion. And yes, Manila needs some serious damage control. It’s saddening.😦

  22. Alejandro Galen says:

    Entonces con esto, ¿estas orgulloso de ser Filipino?

  23. Manila says:

    I love this article! So true.

  24. Choc says:

    What you said might be true. But “Never say Die”.

  25. happyfeetpenguin says:

    thank you for sharing your thoughts on the subject, these are very strong observations. Yes, it is indeed a rant, though there’ll always be supporters and critics on your blog, and i’m sure everyone who writes must be ready to expect feedback from such groups.

    on my end, i’d like to share that while it seems things are doing poorly, and the horrible news and media groups make it look worse, there are numerous groups out there that are working hard to revitalize metro manila. here’s a blog you can look into, written by a popular realtor who is even a person with a disability. his sentiments remain positive despite what’s happening in metro manila today.

    http://cuervopropertyadvisory.wordpress.com/2013/07/12/revitalization-of-the-city-of-manila-a-renewal-of-faith-hope-and-love/

    http://cuervopropertyadvisory.wordpress.com/2013/07/25/escolta-commercial-association-inc-ecai-pioneers-in-revitalization-of-the-city-of-manila/

    http://cuervopropertyadvisory.wordpress.com/2013/08/07/smooth-traffic-flow-commuters-happy-glow-manilas-way-to-go/

    hope we can share the same sentiment too! it’ll inspire us to work towards changes. cheers!

    • hechoayer says:

      In previous blog entries, I have written and praised people and groups who work for our urban re-generation. I am at awe with the heroism of some who are engaged in the enterprise of preserving Manila’s cultural heritage.

  26. Daniel says:

    Estoy completamente de acuerdo con tu articulo pero pienso que todo el problema radica mas en la ACTITUD de los Filipinos, no quieren su ciudad, quieren sacar siempre ventaja de los demás sin importarles nada, no respetan la ley y son consumistas en extremo.
    Si cada uno se hiciera cargo de sus propias responsabilidades y tuviera un poquito mas de sentido de pertenecía esta ciudad seria mucho mejor.
    También cabe aclarar que hay muchas cosas positivas para destacar de esta ciudad, pero este articulo solo quiere hacer un llamado y abrir los ojos a los ciudadanos de Metro Manila para que cambien su actitud y para que elijan mejores lideres y no siempre a la mismas familias y clase política que no han hecho mucho por mejorar la situación.

    • “I completely agree with this article but I think the main problem lies in the ATTITUDE of Filipinos who don’t love their city, content with doing things the easy way in spite of the social problems this may cause, Filipinos who don’t respect the law and are consumerists to the extreme.”

      Dammit I could only translate the first part (Did I do it correctly ?) !

      Anyway next time please try to write in English or Filipino so most people here can understand🙂

  27. Aries says:

    Dude I agree. I’m not gonna nitpick on some stuff in your article but I gotta say you nailed everyone in the head with this. I have been working in Ortigas from my 20’s to my 30’s and I have to withstand the awful fucking traffic EVERY SINGLE FUCKING TIME during commute. What is wrong with the system? Why is there no improvement happening ever? THE CODING THING WORKS NIL. Pinoys know how to circumvent the law and that is why the cars should be banned in Edsa. And Buses don’t have to be banned, paano yung mga taong walang kotse who can’t afford to spend on taxis and fx’s?

  28. Linda Ling says:

    I’m sorry but METRO MANILA IS A SOCIO-ECONOMICALLY BACKWARDS PLACE The poor are getting poorer and the rich are getting richer. Sick people who can’t afford medicine die. They can’t afford it because they don’t have work. They don’t have work because their qualifications don’t meet a lot of job prerequisites. They didn’t go to school or finish school because they can no longer afford it.

  29. Mizmo0O says:

    It needs to die, so that it can one day rise again… like a condo😛

  30. If only mass public transportation has been prioritized as early as perhaps Marcos Era, then it could have been different. Majority of Metro Manilenos and the residents of its suburbs still commute, and commuting in the metro has never been fun. Try asking Cavitenos, who have been suffering chronic traffic at Aguinaldo Highway and shortage of mass public transport. As early as the 1990s, there have been plans to have an LRT South Extension project. Where is it now? Still shelved after how many years.

    And as for growing cities outside of the capital, Greater Manila itself is a perfect example NOT to emulate with. My choice of living between Cebu, Iloilo, and General Santos was brought up because of these scenarios which I have experienced since childhood as once a resident of Imus. Occasionally, I still go back to Cavite, but with what happened to the Integrated Bus Terminal just recently, going home to Imus wouldn’t be that easy. Nagpapasundo na lang ako kasi maraming pwedeng lusutan na pasikot-sikot kung naka-kotse ka. That’s one reality…pero sakit naman sa bulsa dahil sa gas.

    Much of Makati’s workforce lives not in Makati, but Manila’s suburbs and cities around it. Since more people tend to live farther, the necessity of an effective mass public transport system as a priority in its urban projects, should be pushed through. If we promote too much on the roads, without prioritizing on public transport, then Greater Manila may end up dead.

    Cebu, on the other hand, hopes that the Bus Rapid Transit system would improve the perception of the general public in commuting. Officials here though are hoping that NEDA and the national government would give BRT a chance to run in Cebu’s streets, as it hopes to be “one of the solutions in a growing metropolis in terms of transport services.”

    Bottomline, Manila could have been saved–if she is ready for the “big change” in its mass public transport system. Because if we still follow status quo, people will still be encouraged to buy cars, make roads that would eventually fill up, the death of city centers, and eventually urban decay.

    It is not the question of “what happens to the displaced transport sector,” or “where do we get the funds,” but of political will.

    Just my thoughts, being a commuter myself.

  31. tessa says:

    So true. That’s why i try my best to vote wisely;)

  32. Red says:

    Thailand having more edible-looking food? Lol! Have you seen their night markets selling cockroaches and other forms of insects as food?

  33. Militaires Sans Frontieres says:

    Great article you have there. Don’t mind those asshurts who are gone hostile on you. They always do the pwede na iyan/bahala na mentality making them embrace mediocrity. One of the reasons why (and it was called) imperial Manila is congesting too much is the fact that more and more Filipinos from provincial places stays here and always think that they can have a better life than their place. But most of them always end up in slums illegally owning lands, “working” as beggars and just like in this trailer of the upcoming indie film Metro Manila (will be shown here at October): http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UjQK6rOWXTY
    This country really needs federalism very badly.

  34. Juan says:

    before President Marcos era, Manila is the best city, but when Fucking Cory Aquino and the other President sit on Malacanang, Manila untill now is devasted so much..

  35. Jetblue Fan says:

    You raised many good points, alright. But come on. Let’s not blame car owners, or aspiring car owners. I’m pretty sure you are well off to buy your own, but you sounded more insecure than ranting. Everything you mentioned that you alleged causing the slow death of our metropolis, happens to be the same that is fueling our economy, so rapidly in fact.. we’re improving.

    I am not a hater of yours, I admired the way you wrote this article with so much in-the-moment emotion.

    Ultimately, the problem of the Metro is – you guessed it, US. The FILIPINO people. Inherently unable to obey any rules, and pay no respect unless except to a Westerner. And this is no mean to hate on Western cultures either, but it is the truth. Is it not?

    If you read the news recently, you will notice that the government is working round the clock to fix the Metro’s problems. One has to wonder why now? or, why only now? Someone forgot to set the alarm clock to wake up on time, I suppose. But the government is only 1/4 of the problem. The rest is yet again, US. Awesome!

    Our backward culture, and media has transformed us into becoming the kind of people we are now. So sad. I am Filipino, by the way. I read the news, watch local TV shows, and come on.. Has anyone made a conclusion yet of our typical story lines? If you did, it’s a perfect example, of why – and why not, we became the group we are today. Pathetic. We are.

    Private cars are not the problem. Public transport system is. If you want us to commute, and take it as a primary option, the government should be working 24/7/365 to fix the issues. Our nasty public transportation system. It sounds really good to call all people to commute, yes, but in reality, NO. It stinks. Its unsafe. You can’t guarantee your life.

    In summary, Metro Manila government needs to unified government code that’ll consolidate the Metro’s power to someone. To the President, maybe. But that is technically ridiculous by definition and function. One that has a political will to implement the changes without thinking twice on the wreck that will be left behind. Get rid of the padrino fucking system. Its high time we get serious about it.

  36. Joser Manalo says:

    Even if you amass millions of paragraph trying to win an argument over the other, you cannot leave out the fact that what we need right now is revolution. No matter how you look at it, no matter what you do or what act you’re trying to “fool fill”, the government won’t listen to you, those people out there won’t listen to you. I agree with everything being said on the article. The guy Anton Anton seems to be living under a table of a classroom listening to his teacher talk all day.

  37. manonfireelagranputaescucha says:

    remove all squatters.they don’t have proper title to confirm their stay on that spot, trust me, then send them back to their provinces..sounds harsh? well, that is what the government blindly offered them in the first place. jobs in the metro, bright future, fuck.what about developing visayas and mindanao so those people won’t have to gamble their fortune here?Manila is so damn congested because everybody is here.c’mon.

  38. mvp says:

    ho hum…

  39. Gerry Santos says:

    You write a beautiful piece and other Filipinos object. Filipinos by nature just disagree. They always have something better in mind. Thats why Manila is dying.

    • unknown says:

      I totally agree with you.

    • anon says:

      people disagree because they are being defensive, ultimately things that one agrees or disagrees depend on ones conveniences and preferences rather than whats good for the general public. eh bakit mo naman ipagcocommute and seniorito’t seniorita? I do have a car but really i seldom use it going to makati, mas madali mag-van, wala pang hassle sa parking mas tipid kaysa magbayad ng gas. i guess its also human nature to be “better than the jones’s.”

  40. yinyayang says:

    Well said. Kudos to the author. And I agree with Joser Manalo. Its time for a revolution – peaceful or not, we should not care. The government would not give up its powers and the elite would not give up its money just like that. We have so many well versed thinkers/writers/bloggers. What Metro Manila needs are the thinkers with the capacity to manifest what they envision. THINKER AND DOER at the same time. And yeah, just like what mvp said, “ho hum”. Kilos naman tayo! Aside from writing articles, why not establish an organization that will not only air out grievances and solutions but actually implement the solutions? I hate to say this but this article wont bring Manila back to its former glory – our actions will.

  41. msvillan says:

    I don’t see the point of people complaining when they themselves don’t do anything about it.

  42. Philip Ino says:

    Sad but true. It’s actually nice to walk going to places but only if our city is nicer, cleaner and safer. If you’ve been to other countries (not third world) you know what I’m talking about. Govt officials should spend their budget on improving this country and spend less on their shopping spree! Konting kunsensya naman jan.. I have been exposed to both worlds ( filthy rich world and stinking poor world ) the disparity between rich and poor is appalling! Masarap buhay dito pag mayaman Ka. Sorry nalang Kung average or poor ka.

  43. Ref Ger says:

    Any specific Suggestions?
    Like: implement all Traffic Rules, no parking, no stopping, no left turn, etc…
    Remove all illegal settlers (Squaters), Remove all illegal Vendors, Implement Business permit, Proper waste disposal, Remove all Buildings that encroach on Esteros, and Jail all those found to have committed Corruption or receiving Lagay, etc
    Implementation is the key,
    Calling on Mayor Estrada and all Mayors of Greater Manila. Do your job well and you will be remembered.

  44. looneydee says:

    Well written rant.🙂 My thoughts in text.

    Hechoayer, I dont know why everyone notices this except those who need to notice it–our public officials.

    Sa dami ng problema ng Metro Manila, starting with the traffic down to the illegal settlers, hindi na gumaganda ang quality ng buhay to say the least.

    Whenever somebody from another country would ask me, “kamusta na ang Pinas?” I would simply reply, “The Philippines: A sad, six-year story”. Kasi every six years, may bagong presidente, may bagong plano, bagong pangako, bagong ipapako, etc. No continuity in its programs. Wala. Olats.

    This is sad. And you’re right, this Mega Manila is surely dying.

  45. looneydee says:

    And, the issue about traffic.

    First, an efficient mass transport system will solve all this. If we can’t afford it as a country, then here are a few things to look into:

    Discipline – its not the number of cars or the number of buses that ply EDSA that’s causing this congested state, its how we drive. OK, for the buses, there should be a strategic loading and unloading stations and buses can only stop there. Period, no ifs, no buts. Only in those places.

    Regulated Bus Scheme – Buses should be dispatched in a timely manner. Ang daming bus na nag aantay, ginagawang terminal ang loading stations kasi walang laman. If they were dispatched in a regulated manner, their number along EDSA is controlled and mas productive pa oras ng bus drivers and in turn, taxis and private vehicles get a better flow of traffic. Lahat makikinabang.

    Intersections lead to gridlock – There are unnecessary intersections that need to be closed and vehicles will have to be rerouted to the nearest U-Turn slot to eliminate the gridlock. Now, I bet may magrereklamo, “eh ang layo ng u-turn slot” or “dun naman sa u-turn magcocongest”. then, again, its about the etiquette in driving or road courtesy. Let’s deal with that next. Going back to the unnecessary intersections. Take that intersection on Andrews-to-Lawton Ave crossing West Service Road-to-Andrews and those small roads leading up to West Service road, and the other one coming up from SLEX to Andrews. Magulo ba? Same as the traffic on that intersection. That intersection is very unnecessary. More traffic-congestion inducing that helpful. I say eliminate it. Reroute to make the flow smooth.

    Road Courtesy – This is hardly a practice in the drivers here in our country. Merging traffic na nga, nag-iipitan pa. Nakita nang 2 lanes lang, ang dami pa rin mga makakapal ang mukha na mag counterflow tapos sisiksik sa unahan. Where in Earth did you guys learn how to drive? That’s another problem with us Pinoys, we always try and get away with it if we can. Grabe ang bastusan sa kalye. Private or public vehicles, walang pinag-iba. the bigger the vehicle, the more bully the drivers become. If we want our traffic situation to change, we need to be a little of courtesy. If people in Subic can do it, why can’t we do it here in Mega Manila?

    At yang mga tumatawid, please lang ha, pwede bang bilis-bilisan naman ang lakad at hindi yung parang namamasyal sa park?

    • Liz Stonehill Levy says:

      You have made some excellent comments regarding the traffic jams and these should be considered!! They have to start somewhere and schedules for the buses and the elimination of jeepneys would be a good start!!!

  46. ashfenixx says:

    All the sentiments expressed here, I rightfully agree. The fact that Filipinos deny and get offended when they are faced with such (or any) criticism doesn’t help. Accepting we’re are screwed is the first step. Honestly, Our infrastructure sucks. Our roads remain small, we don’t have efficient garbage collection, no reliable postal service and even public transportation. Unless these change, our tourism will never make it, as this is an essential component of making tourism work. (Unless of course tourists just skip Manila and fly in direct to Boracay or Palawan).

    I suppose we’ve never had a leader that is visionary, thinks of the big picture and long-term success of the country. If we do have people like this, they are probably not in power, won’t ever be elected or have moved to another country. What we have are politicians that hides on family values and charity work to justify corruption, and Filipinos support them for short terms gains. We have very social culture, and yet a very selfish one. We are proud to see another Filipino, yet can’t trust anyone.

    It’s very disheartening.

  47. kuya tim says:

    Do you know how this can be more than a mere rant? Write a letter addressed to DOTC, Malacanang, Mayor’s Office, etc. Seriously, these letters are being read.

    Do you know how this can be more than a mere rant? Go out and volunteer. Help out. Feed the hungry.

    Do you know how this can me more than a mere rant? Take the civil service exam and actually try to help from the inside.

    No sarcasm at all in this comment. Seriously. You really feel like giving Manila a CPR?

  48. kuya tim says:

    You know how this can be more than a mere rant? Write a letter addressed to DOTC, MMDA, Mayor’s Office, Malacanang, etc. Seriously, these letters are being read. You can even just paste this whole blog. Or at least include some action points.

    You know how this can be more than a mere rant? Volunteer. Help. Feed the hungry.

    You know how this can be more than a mere rant? Take the civil service exam and make a difference from the inside.

    No sarcasm at all in this post. Seriously. Do you want to give our beloved Manila a CPR?

    • I take issue on the part where you “volunteer, help, feed the hungry.” These are simply stopgap temporary solutions that do not address the more fundamental problems that can only really be addressed through collective social action, e.g. government.

      I know this because I spent half a year volunteering abroad in West Africa and let me tell you, volunteering has NOTHING to do with solving the fundamentals. Sure, I fed a kid, taught him some English phrases, but I left feeling that I didn’t do anything decisive.

      I’m sure you meant well, I agree on the part on working inside the government, but not on volunteerism and its distorted positive consequences.

    • Militaires Sans Frontieres says:

      Oh puhleaze! Your “solution” is like telling us the “ikaw na lang kaya maging presidente” excuse. Many already did that and yet our politicos done nothing but only for themselves especially enjoying their pork barrel. Ano ka, parang squatter na iaasa mo na lang palagi sa gobyerno ang problema? And speaking of squatters, what’s up with that feed the hungry you’re saying? Are you one of those squatter apologists who you always think that the squatters are victims of their poor state when in fact it’s their own fault for not moving their asses to progress?

  49. Wheeew says:

    What made the philippines like this in general ( some places might not be as bad as manila now, but going there) is the lack of discipline of people, self centered, the mentality of we need to get ahead of our neighbor or friends, and we want to look sosyal or try to climb the social ladder. We don’t even think of the other people in our surroundings. True we might need the government to create a better commuting scheme or to tame the filipinos, but the reality is, our culture has changed to what you see now. People would be so rude cause they are richer, people would cut lines, people would even look down on you even because of what you wear.

    I recently transferred in Sydney and you would certainly see the difference, from how they commute, around 2000+ people a day passes through the Sydney Bridge with their bikes some traveling as far as 30km one way, heck their bicycles are even worth more than our surplus cars. People even leave their cars in a parking lot across the train station to work in the city, people diving audi’s, Volvo’s, mercedes benz and bmw’s would leave their pricey car to commute to work in the cbd. People walk if its not that far and buses and the people riding the buses would respect what a bus stop is. When we ride the jeep, even if the place we want to go to is just a building away from where the jeepney stopped because some one went down, we could careless to go down and wait till the very instant that the jeep would be outside the building you want to go to. If we as filipinos won’t change ourselves then the whole philippines would sink through the pacific.

  50. Very nice essay. I found your observations to be very true.

  51. Stop writing. Don’t ever blog ever. Shut the eff up. You shouldn’t be shared. You should be jailed. Congratulations, you’ve just managed to piss a lot of people off and put everyone down more without offering any kind of solution. Whine, whine, whine. You, like your sad little blog, have become part of the very problem you’re complaining about.

    You know why you sound like a sad little dick? Cuz you feel so self-entitled. You wanna preserve Spanish in the Philippines? You’re centuries late. For what purpose? So we can drown in colonial mentality more? You’re so effin’ irrelevant.

    Kulang ka sa research. A lot of people are going out and ACTUALLY DOING THINGS. While you are sitting in your sad little cubicle somewhere with nothing else to do. If you don’t like Manila, then Get the eff out.

    • SELF ENTITLEMENT. There you have it.

    • Militaires Sans Frontieres says:

      Oh what’s the matter FLIPFAG? Can’t handle the harsh reality that you always sugarcoat it?

      • jeidee.pagsisihan@facebook.com says:

        I can handle it. And I remain hopeful. It’s sad little fucks like you and this twat blogger who should get the hell out of this city and go straight to hell. Go and do your ass kissing elsewhere you dumb fuck.

    • from hero to zero says:

      i think your a guy who just do clubbing, smoke ad drink and the douche who just dont care about whats happening. yep you are.

    • hechoayer says:

      Your foul language deserves to be published. Who are you? Ikaw? Behind your “commenter’s” profile, write down your sane and intellectual points which propel you to respond with so much poison and ferocity. You like Metro Manila as it is ba that you feel so insulted by this post?

      • Sola says:

        Haha. Hey, hecho, I like your article and I agree with a lot of the things you’ve written but you need to chill. I don’t think mr. jeidee actually read your article. I can see he’s just trolling you.

      • Sola says:

        @ jeidee: I can see through you, dude. Take your trolling elsewhere, man, if you don’t have anything better to do like ACTUALLY DOING THINGS.

  52. PRATN says:

    It seems that every suggestion to come onto the table is shot down because the situation in Manila has gotten so out of hand nothing seems to work.

    Does that mean, then, that Manila cannot be redeemed? Has it gone too far down a dark path to ever be brought back into the light?

    • Militaires Sans Frontieres says:

      Unless the Filipinos change their dysfunctional culture and system, not only Manila but the whole country will remain as Asia’s basketcase.

  53. mike says:

    political will….

  54. Nina says:

    i love metro manila

  55. hopelesscapital says:

    I had a promising job in the capital years back but I chose to go home to the province. Small salary but the quality of life is there. 5 minutes to work, fresh air, fresh food and plenty of time for other activities after work because there is no traffic.

  56. I find it even sadder that doom sayers rarely have any practical solutions.

  57. I don’t agree that Metro Manila is dying. Broken, maybe, but dying no.

    I fail to see where it is in fact dying or to what degree. There are no comparison made to any city that is dying (say Detroit for example) or dead cities (say Petra) can be found in this article. No definition even of dying. How do you say it is dying or dead even?

    If you research all points you have cited happened to all great cities during their growth periods. Of course, they had only coaches then and that was 1910’s, but the essence of it is the same (compare your notes to New York circa mentioned years).

    Of course, if you compare our situation now to mega cities of today we would look like trash. But think again we just happen to have had huge scab from a war and civil strife in the same cities. You can’t just pull it up as Manila was known as the Queen city of the Orient.

    We just need to fix things.

  58. Emy Marquez says:

    The phils must ask some help to some other countries like Germany,for the structures of the cities,and this is the big problem in the Phils.he never tried to ask help although the chaos is already existed,Germany is one of the best country to solve this problem.
    I believe the pinoys are not capable to solve this problem.

  59. doc pags says:

    I totalky agree with your article. I think metro manila is more of a zombie than dying. Its a living dead. I just wish we had more efficient mass tranportation just like in san francisco, kl, hk or sg. I think we have tolerated mediocre kind of service for too long that it refects in the society we are in. And of course the unfathomable greed of our public officials in not thinking for what is best. Better that they commute and have their children take the public transpo for them to wake up

  60. hechoayer says:

    And for all the strangers who don’t know me, my advocacy nor my previous works (but judge and label me), please click on the link. Some expect a “perfect” blog entry, one that is worthy of a Palanca award. People want something positive, want something that offers a solution. Please click on the link so you have an idea of what this blog has chronicled, or what this writer has been actually trying to do: http://www.philstar.com/starweek-magazine/644124/building-wisdom-past

  61. Sola says:

    To those who proposed a subway system:
    I like you’re idea and I’ve thought of something similar however I must point out that rainwater/ floodwater will most likely find their way in and make the subway unusable.

    Manila, as many of you don’t seem to be aware of it at the present time, was historically geographically akin to a Venice, or Netherlands with “islands” separated by small canals/ esteros or such stream-like running bodies of water.
    Learned it from ” MANILA, MY MANILA” written by no less than national artist Nick Joaquin.
    Cool book, btw.
    Technically, the problem with the flood will never go away because it took thousands of years for those land masses or “islands” to form.
    Unless we do something very similar to Netherlands with floating houses and such, I think.

  62. John says:

    As a citizen that lives in Las Pinas and travels to Makati and Commonwealth on a daily basis both by car and public transportation, I have observed that we Filipinos are very self centered. Take for example when I’m driving from Las Pinas to Makati I get easily pissed at buses and jeepney drivers and all these people who does not know where to cross the street, but when I’m in a bus from Makati to Commonwealth I get pissed at drivers who honk their cars as if these PUVs can fly. We lack discipline and we are only good mannered when it matters. Old folks always tell me that the Philippines or Manila was not like this during their time. People had class and they were afraid of authority plus authority figures were not messed up, they feared them, but they also respected them, nowadays its just another corrupt fat cop looking for extra money to solicit from you. This is a very messed up place. There are too much people, too much money being corrupted, minimal discipline, fucked up officials who only clamor to the poor because their votes “matter”, no separation of church from government affairs, and what do we say to all of these? Bahala na. Galing ng pinoy.

  63. Rei Mark says:

    Hear, hear! I agree with what you wrote. You have voiced out (in a very good manner mind you) what I also observe everyday in the streets of Metro Manila. It is a very depressing sight. Metro Manila wasn’t just left in the past; it has suffered and completely degraded. A large part of the problem can be attributed to the lack of values of the citizens which probably resulted from the terrible implementation of laws in this land. I can’t believe that the landmarks and establishments I know from 15 years ago are still the same ones I see but only older, duller and in disrepair. We are not even at a standstill. On the contrary, we are being sucked backwards.

    I am a lover of peace, cleanliness, and order so it hurts to live in a city where most people treat their surroundings as one big garbage can. This is probably why I instantly got enchanted by the city of Singapore when I visited it a child. It is a beautiful, vibrant city that we can aspire for.

  64. Elizabeth Stonehill Levy says:

    I was born in Manila in 1952 and my American father and Filipina mother had visions of creating a middle class in the Philippines. There was government corruption then, and it has only become worse in the last 60 years. It just makes me very sad to know that the rich and powerful do not CARE about the people, the cities, the infrastructure, city planning, and the very lives of the average Filipino. Sadly, the Philippine government at the time chose to deport my family, at the urging of the US government, because my father was seen as a danger to them, as the population would no longer have to rely on the USA for basic needs such as glass, cotton, sugar, tobacco, steel, and low cost housing. My father had created industry and thousands of Filipino jobs in his businesses. Unfortunately, his fear for his adopted country is being realized now and all I can say is that is is very sad. The leaders of today need a vision of greatness and to work diligently to ensure a beautiful future for a beautiful land. Personal greed and pay-offs cannot be included if my birthplace is to become beautiful and peaceful for all its citizens. My heart is with you.

  65. Tim says:

    Well, you have a point although I guess we should not blame ourselves for buying cars and getting jammed into traffic. My brother almost got killed from Ayala bus bombing. My sister got raped from riding a tricycle. My dad got stabbed on his way home from work when he left the car to save money. And recently, thanks to a couple of guys who helped me fend off some muggers who tried to rob me and my wife. (These are for real) Having a car is not just about status symbol. It’s definitely a must in this country. So how do we solve all these adversaries in our country? MAXIMIZE AND UTILIZE THE BUDGET FOR EDUCATION. That’s the only way. Think about it. We get less uneducated voters. We get less corrupt leaders. We learn discipline in every way of life. We get less crime. less muggers, and more hope for everyone. That way, we do not blame ourselves and or the government.

    • Molybdenum Studios says:

      I really feel for you dude. That’s why private vehicles are for emergency purposes and not only because it’s for all-show.

  66. Ken says:

    Google: “most dense city in the world..” Or something to that extent. A number of sources will indicate Manila.. Check google maps and see how packed Metro Manila is, nothing but gray. Philippines incompetent Government aside, try improving something that has no space for improvement. Somewhere up in the thread was a comment on Jakarta, been there and although visually it’s similar to M.M. It has far more space, residents are somewhat more spread out.

    My 2 cents.. With the impossibility of creating new roads to ease road congestion.. Next logical step would be luxury tax on vehicles (obviously won’t work, car manufacturers will bully the Government into submission). Toll Metro Manila roads like Singapore / Shanghai (nahh, private sector will bully Government into submission). Develop suburbs outside The Metro like most developed countries do (pffft, why would a proud pinoy want to live in “the province”, besides i’ll just double my travel time going in and out of the Metro). Fix public transpo to encourage commuting (the only way to fix this would be to to transfer public transpo control to the municipal level, uh-huh private transpo operators will bully… Yup same old).

    I love the Philippines, born and raised.. I’ve been living in Canada (Greater Toronto Area) for a year now, and itching to go back home but everytime I see pictures of congested Manila I ask myself if I really want to go back, yup that bad. Not gloating but, public transpo here is controlled by the government, you don’t see bus drivers trying to out do each other. It’s considered traffic when highway speeds drop to 60 – 80kph, 20 years from now they’re expecting worsening congestion, to prevent it they’ve started building numerous new highways. It’s easy for them to expand because there’s so much free space. Try expanding Edsa.. Not happening.. Try expanding sub roads around the Metro.. Not happening, you’d have to demolish commercial / private property to do that.

  67. Ben Co says:

    Although I agree with many of the problems you mentioned, I think there are some generalizations that are not completely accurate. In terms of city development, Rockwell and BGC are good examples of well-planned communities. The congestion problems being experienced by the city are due to a lack of finances and extreme population growth, not attitude. People/businesses that don’t pay their taxes and a population lacking access to family planning education are some possible reasons behind this. We must respect the individuality of people together with their aspirations/convictions on life. This should be treated as another variable to consider in solving the issues we face.

    In recent times, the Philippines is headed in a better direction. All the economic indicators (i.e. GDP, inflation, foreign reserves) are at ideal levels. Investments in the country are growing. Remittances from OFWs continue to be strong. While the wide gap between rich and poor is still there, we must realize that this is a hard problem to solve; one that many countries including the US has failed at.

    • hechoayer says:

      Exactly. BGC and Rockwell are private enclaves and property prices there are favorable only to some. The rest of the overwhelming majority of the city, you must admit, is a far cry from the two real estate developments you mentioned.

  68. Erika says:

    I agree with most of what you pointed out. To sum it up, I guess, is that this city (or country in general) is dying simply because most don’t have the discipline to follow the rule of law. I mean, really, do you expect more from people who blatantly do not fall in line, or those drivers who do not let pedestrians cross the street EVEN when they’re on the pedestrian lane? I do not want to lose hope that things will change but until these basic rules are not followed, then i’m also not expecting any improvement. If people can’t even fall in line then I cannot expect them to be more disciplined in things more complicated than that.

  69. erono says:

    I agree with you but I think the most basic problem is people in this country (in general), disregard the rule of law…most don’t even have the discipline to fall in line and it’s an everyday game of patintero for me against drivers who would not let me cross the street even if I’m in the middle of the pedestrian lane. If something as basic as falling in line cannot be done then I’m not expecting any kind of improvement any time soon.

  70. The introduction of TRAM LINKS is much needed in Manila to ease the problem of traffic congestion. I am sure jeepneys, tricycles, buses and even sidewalk vendors will disappear when this type of transport will take over Manila. All bus terminals must have access to TRAM LINKS so that commuters can use them to travel to their point of destination in Manila. Manila used TRANVIA before so it should be revived in Manila as soon as possible.

  71. erono says:

    I do not want to lose hope, but I really can’t expect more from people who can’t even fall in line (I mean, really?! It’s so simple!). My heart is with you as well.

  72. shiela says:

    You’re right about this! Some parts of the Metro Manila are not that awful like the others commented here, BUT mostly yung magagandang place na yan are for rich people talaga..

    Better public transportaion system – that’s a big yes for me.

    And in my opinion, malayo talaga mararating kapag may DISIPLINA lahat ng tao. Yung YOLO mentality naman kasi dapat may kaakibat ding values..hindi yung bara-bara lang.

  73. Glitch says:

    As a middle-class citizen who studied in an high-end school from prep to high school, I am also guilty of trying to always keep up with trends in order to level with my effortlessly rich friends. But slowly I have come to realize that my rich friends don’t really care if I am “below” their level. They are mostly gracious to me and no judgment (at least not that I know of) has ever been made with regards to my economic status. And now that I am already working, I am completely over that phase as I now realize how very pointless it is to spend hard-earned money on superficial things just to impress people.

  74. Riyet says:

    “Manila is dying”…Such an excruciating phrase my lips would not even dare say the words..
    But then again, aren’t we, Filipino citizens, the ones solely responsible for this?
    Ask yourself this question:
    Who, since decades ago, have you been voting for during the elections?
    Now, have you contributed to why Manila is now a dying city, or have you not?

  75. B says:

    The death of manila are the Filipinos. The problems with Filipinos is that we’re dreamers and complainers and do not act because we underestimate ourselves. I’ve read posts here “what can i do.. I’m no one.. I don’t work in the government..” so they end up doing nothing. If you want to change something, make sure you are the change you want to see. And maybe people will copy you.

    There are a lot of companies that are trying to make a change and help this country. Do you know them? Do you work for them? Do you ever want to be a part of that? Or are you just waiting for that multinational company and that big fat paycheck and just complain about the traffic and corrupt politicians and the rich getting richer when you are trying to do the same thing. You are the problem of this nation and you are the only solution to fix it. Yes, you. You’re that important.

  76. Maria Luisa Ballesty says:

    Please –let us be positive. We always like to complain…though I agree that we do not take the public transportation because there are many horror stories about icepicks, guns and hold ups on LRTS MRTS and buses. We have to rely on our cars–instead of taking the MRTS or LRTS because of the horrible stories we hear about holdups using deadly scary weapons. The best thing to do while we are in the midst of heavy traffic it is best to pray the rosary and meditate on its mysteries –instead of griping and being so restless in the car. To say that Metro Manila is dying is a bit offensive for Filipinos who are still patriotic. We must offer solutions to the problem of traffic. Most young people these days are not involved with current issues. Yup, they are so preoccupied with the internet, that they really do not read the newspapers anymore. They miss out on reading the editorial page and opinion pages. They are indifferent to even know and learn about the current issues. Do they get involved in the elections at all? Am sure many do not even vote ! . We shall be a great nation when people start having quite a strong sense of nationalism. They have to love their own country instead of insulting everyone in government and everything about this country. We should offer suggestions and think of the solutions – instead of just ranting about the seeming problem of traffic and others. ,Maybe while people are riding on the public transportation, they can read a good stimulating book – instead of plugging their ears to hear those loud noisy music -if not- texting and playing candy crush. Let us not be too hard on ourselves. There is HOPE –if we learn to improve ourselves, change our selfish ways and be more involved in nation building in whatever way you could ! LET us STOP putting ourselves down as a nation – as part of the problem in the busy traffic of Metro Manila ! By the way. do you even believe in the power of the word – to say that the Metro Manila is dying or in ICU–is not just unhealthy but terribly lethal — especially now we heard that the terrorists from Mindanao are in Metro Manila to sow TERROR in the busy city ! Let us say that Metro Manila is very much alive – but needs more improvement in solving the traffic situation ! Thanks to all those who made a commentary – instead of being plain indifferent about our Metropolis ! May GOD BLESS our COUNTRY and the people of this country !

  77. Nice article, and a tad on the radical side too. I’m not saying that this is prejudiced, but i hope you are not shoving a foreign standard onto tue philippines when you wrote this. Cultural relativity.

    Secondly, now we have described and identified the problem/s. Now what? We act. One by one. Let’s not stop here. Complaining about the traffic? Preach and ride the trains. Let’s show our immediate social circle that it is nothing shameful. Pollution? Let’s walk. One kilometer is a good distance not too far, but enough for a good exercise.

    One by one.

  78. Al says:

    A good place to start improving the traffic congestion is if we can have a public trasportation system that has definite routes, stops, and schedules. Let’s get rid of the infinite number of smoke belching jeepneys and busses that litter the roads, stop anywhere at any time, and cause traffic.

  79. Ricky M. Loquinario II says:

    Its sad. I once went through a 1971 issue of the Riders Digest my father keeps. There was so much hope and good words for our country way back then, much more than Singapore, Malaysia and Thailand. It was indeed as if we were in the right track. But somewhere down the journey we were making as a vibrant democratic country, we fell off the wagon. and we are still being dragged down the road. Yes, we are dying, time is against us, and I fera for my childrens future. Corruption, traffic, greed. God help us…sigh : (

  80. Ricky M. Loquinario II says:

    I fear for my children…

  81. EstaGranPutaNacion says:

    En qué puñetera epoca vivis? Imaginad, si este país llega a ser un país perfecto o casi perfecto, ya podemos empezar quitando “IT’S MORE FUN IN THE PHILIPPINES”. El encanto de esta nación se encuentra en las imperfecciones y malestar de la situacion politica y economica, con lo cual, debe seguir estando asi. Esta nación no tiene valores orientales ni occidentales, sino un valor propiamente de la evolución cultural y social del país a lo largo de mucho tiempo. No cabe ninguna duda que es una paradoja regional para los sudamericanos y asiáticos profundizar la existencia de la perla del oriente. Ningún país en el mundo lleva semejante variedad cuyas cultura y filosofía se entremezclan con latinos y orientales. Filipinas es un país asiático perdido en un mundo latino.

  82. EstaGranPutaNacion says:

    Imagine, a perfect and advanced Philippines. Don’t you guys get the whole essence of the existence of this country? What is the use of “IT’S MORE FUN IN THE PHILIPPINES” if this country were such an industrialised, advanced and almost perfect nation. Come on guys, it ain’t bad to live in the Philippines despite the shortcomings and complaints. In every cloud, there is always a silver lining🙂

  83. EstaGranPutaNacion says:

    Everyone is asking the wrong question in this blog, the right one would “DOES THE MAJORITY OF JUAN DELA CRUZ’S CHILDREN WANT THIS COUNTRY TO BE AN ADVANCED, INDUSTRIALISED AND PROGRESSIVE COUNTRY?” Amidst the whims and squalms found in the blog, one must perceive the extent and depth of the education system in the country firstly to be able to reach a consensual rationale on whether to carry on with this slow moving topic. It will just be a merry go round of opinions without end, and that is the future of your country. A merry go round of opinions🙂

  84. Hazel says:

    I’m a Filipina American (both parents Filipinos but I grew up in California) and I’m here living in Quezon City pursuing my Masters in Community Development here. 2 years ago I lived here for 7 months doing independent research and now I’m back here and it’s been 8 months. A big part of this program requires that we live in urban poor communities. I live in Payatas. I nearly broke down in tears reading this blog because you are so on point. I’ve seen and recognized all these thing and I wasn’t even born and raised here. It breaks my heart… I don’t know what else to say. Shoot me an email. Would like to hear more of your thoughts.

  85. Molybdenum Studios says:

    To the author:

    I really think that this blog entry of yours is really amazing–no joking right here. I have tried riding the jeepneys and the LRT (well, with a companion of course), but it was really more memorable since if I were to be asked, I’d rather use a private vehicle for LONG TRAVEL and for emergency purposes. I also believe that having a car is not necessary unless you really NEED it for safety reasons.

    Also, I really think that being a risk-taker for a day or two is really fun. Most Filipinos really, are just very finicky when it comes to these things–you need to have this and that (personal vehicle and a condominium unit) in order to impress people. But for me, having a condo and a private vehicle is for convenience and emergency purposes… and distance purposes. It is also for me to access school easier than going away from home and whatnot.

    Allow me to share you my status on FB anyways, if you don’t mind:

    Filipinos, stop being butthurt when someone criticizes the mediocrity of your country? I myself am a Filipino too, but I am VERY FRUSTRATED about how you take things personally. Some of you are butthurt know-it-alls who are more IGNORAMUS than us straightforward and opinionated people… you don’t want to change this country and your irrational hypocrisy pisses me off when you are shoving to us that we can NEVER change this country. Typical know-it-all netizens sadly lambasted the author of the “Dying Metro Manila” just because the author talked about materialism via private vehicles versus commuting. As a matter of fact, Vietnam is fat better than us when it comes to traffic–most Vietnamese people use motorbikes but YES, they follow traffic rules. Also, they do ways to preserve their culture and heritage, that’s why they are ahead of us.

    Also, when it comes to heavy traffic, olats parin tayo. We don’t utilize the transport system very much, especially trains. Don’t make the government’s inefficiency as an excuse–try to be risk-takers, but always make sure you are freaking safe and alive. I rode the LRT a number of times, and guess what? It was a VERY GREAT experience for me. Whether you have a companion or not, everyone should learn how to commute even just ONCE. Also, a car for me is only for emergency purposes or for LONG travel, that’s why I prefer utilizing public transpo than using a car (too hassle TBH esp. the fact that I don’t drive).

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