The Flourishing Culture of Fakery

The Flourishing Culture of Fakery
By Apolinario Villalobos

The unprecedented flourishing of fakery has cultivated a culture that became an integral component of life. It has made virtual luxuries affordable, such that anybody can be covered with “gold” jewelries; window shop wearing “branded” shoes, apparel, and knick knacks; sport a sweet smile to show beautifully crafted false teeth, some even tattooed or embedded with diamonds; strut along busy lanes, chest out, to vaunt proud breasts implanted with silicon; look pretty in false eyelashes and eyebrows; and assume another personality with transplanted sexual organ.

Practically, one can be transformed into a “he” or a “she” by undergoing a total physical makeover, from the face down to the rest of the body parts. Society has become lenient to those who are undergoing gender change to make their lives comfortable and fulfilled. For health’s sake, some people are walking the streets with battery-operated fake heart. And, of course, the fake appendages such as arms and legs should not be forgotten, as well as, the fake eyes, nose, ears and hair – all for comfort’s sake.

Digitization did not solve the fraudulence in the use of passport. While before, the original photo on the stolen ID can be easily peeled off, with that of the look-alike user pasted on its place, today, the user’s face is changed, instead, through plastic surgery to “fit” the photo which is permanently printed on the document.

In Manila, there is a short portion of Recto Avenue that could make a great transformation on the life of a person, where the manufacture of fake scholastic documents and post graduate achievements, as well as, status in life, are advertised intimately. “Agents” approach pedestrians to whisper the expertise of their colleagues in printing diplomas and transcripts of records – name your school or university, they will do it in less than an hour. The same can also be done for the driving license and for the practice of trade in the fields of medicine, teaching, engineering, etc. They have prototypes of practically all schools all over the Philippines. Even ID cards are not spared, as all they need is just a sample that the customer will show. Even old birth certificates, marriage certificates and land titles, complete with signatures can be faked with a flourish.

Man’s way of life presently is already overwhelmed by fakery. The food he eats are manufactured and imbued with the necessary nutrients. What is bad is the double fakery being committed by the unscrupulous, as even manufactured foods such as instant noodles are further faked using unhealthy and cheap ingredients. There are fake sugar and salt, even food flavors and colors. There is also the fake meat that the vegetarians eat. Unfortunately, natural food products such as vegetables, fruits and marine products are either soaked in or injected with formalin, so that they will maintain their fake fresh look for days.

The only way, perhaps, to tolerate these fake, manufactured, and poisoned foods is to have fake metallic or rubber guts– from the small to the large intestines which should be imbedded with “squeezers” that shall process the foods taken in for their nutrients until they come out as waste. With that, it is no longer embarrassing to slush out waste from the body even in public places, as all it needs is discreetly attach a tube to either of one’s side. That particular hole down there, the traditional exit point of the body, may already be plugged permanently. Expect something of this kind to be manufactured in China being the forerunner in this kind of trade, as they also manufacture fake rice, fake salt, fake cellphones, fake brands of apparel, fake drugs, fake beauty products, raise fake peking ducks, and the ultimate – transform coral reefs into fake islands! Who knows, the waste that shall come out of the fake guts may still be recycled by the overly resourceful Chinese into biscuits! Take note, there is now an expensive coffee manufactured out of the coffee beans that come out as waste of civets. These civets are raised on coffee beans that come out as their waste, still whole but peeled and undigested.

On the other hand, time may come when the wealthy members of society may no longer flaunt jewelries which are among the gauge of affluence. Instead, they may proudly brandish arms of pure 24k gold or fine strands of gold or silver implanted on their head to accent the shade of their hair. Their fluttering eyelids may already be made of thin softened sheet of silver or gold imbedded with diamonds. Their lips may be permanently coated with a new kind of lipstick to better enhance the smile with a certain kind of sheen. And, also the sole of their feet made of titanium may be strapped with retractable wheels for swift mobility as necessary.

The world is teeming with people clad in pretensions. Some of these are the hypocrites in the government who pretend to be diligently dedicated to their jobs. They try to support their claim with fake accomplishments. Worst, fakery in the government has also spelled disaster and anguish among the constituents, with the proliferation of fake documents being used for the release of budgets, resulting to the depletion of government funds in no time.

As prophesied, fake messiahs are now boldly evangelizing with gusto in the open, while enjoying the fruit of their fakery which suckers who want to be “saved” have bitten with all their heart. These fake messiahs live in mansions and are driven around in luxury cars. From their humble status as struggling pastors with a few followers who congregate in rented apartments and small commercial stalls, they are transformed into jetsetters who maintain vacation houses in the Mediterranean coast or high-end cities for weekend jaunts. And, their mesmerized followers now meet in palatial and air-conditioned houses of worship. Some even maintain slots on TV and radio to ensure that they can lure more suckers.

Finally, only death can free man from all the shams, as such state serves as his final solace, after enjoying all the blessings that God gave him, though, spoiled by his earthly and narcissistic greed!

May Pag-asa pa Kayang Makabawi ang Pilipinas sa West Philippine Sea?

May Pag-asa Pa Kayang Makabawi
ang Pilipinas sa West Philippine Sea?
Ni Apolinario Villalobos

Masakit sabihing parang wala nang pag-asang magkaroon pa ng katuturan ang mga paghihirap ng Pilipinas sa pagsampa ng mga kaso sa international court laban sa Tsina tungkol sa usapin sa West Philippine Sea. Hayagang sinabi ng Tsina na hindi nila rerespetuhin ano man ang kalalabasan ng imbestigasyon. Ibig sabihin, hindi nila pinaniniwalaan ang poder ng korte.

Ang ASEAN naman na inaasahang magbubuklod laban sa Tsina ay halatang wala ring magawa bilang isang organisasyon. Ang Amerika na halos panikluhuran ng administrasyon upang masandalan sa harap ng banta ng Tsina, ay pinaiigting ang joint exercises at ng sinasabing kasunduan sa pagkakaroon ng animo ay pansamantalang “kampo” at mga daungan sa Pilipinas, mga bagay na hinahadlangan naman ng iba’t ibang makabayang grupo. Sa isang banda ay tama ang mga grupong ito dahil parang ang gusto lang ng Amerika sa Pilipinas ay gamitin nila itong harang sa anumang hindi kanais-nais na kilos ng Tsina sa mga susunod na panahon. Kaya, magkabombahan man, Pilipinas ang unang tatamaan!

Subali’t habang nagpapakita ng pakikipagtulungan ang Amerika sa Pilipinas, pinapalakas naman nito ang ugnayan sa mga Tsino. Ibig sabihin, parang pinaglalaruan lang ng Amerika ang Pilipinas. Malaki daw ang utang ng Amerika sa Tsina.

Nagkaroon kamakaylan lamang ng isang exhibit ng old maps na nagpapakita na noon pa mang unang panahon, ay talagang wala namang ginawang pag-aangkin ang Tsina sa kahit na anong bahagi ng mga karagatan sa paligid ng Pilipinas. Ang mga Tsino noon ay “dumadayo” lamang sa mga isla ng Pilipinas upang makipagkalakalan, hanggang sa magkaroon sila ng sariling distrito sa Maynila na tinawag na “parian” noong panahon ng Kastila, na ngayon ay ang maunlad na Chinatown sa Manila. Sa exhibition ng mga lumang mapa, wala ni isa sa mga ito ang maski may kapirasong pagtukoy ng pag-angkin ng anumang bahura ng Pilipinas, lalo na sa pinag-aagawang West Philippine Sea.

Ang bagong henerasyon ng mga lider ng Tsina ang malinaw na may pakana sa pangangamkam ng mga bahura sa bahagi ng kanlurang karagatan ng Pilipinas, kaya pati ang mga karatig- bansa ay nadamay na rin, dahil pati ang dati na nilang kinikilalang mga bahura ay inaangkin na rin ng Tsina.

Sa mga bansa na may kinalaman sa problemang angkinan, bukod tanging Pilipinas ang mukhang kawawa. Ang nag-iisang barkong kinulapulan na ng kalawang at talaba, na ginawang headquarters ng mga bantay-dagat ay nagmumukhang yagit kung ihambing sa mga dambuhalang barko ng Tsina, at maski ng Vietnam. Maaaring kung hindi pa nabahura ay hindi pa ginawang headquarters at malamang naiwang nakatiwangwang ang bahurang inaangkin ng Pilipinas. Malamang pa rin na, natayuan na rin ng headquarter ng Tsina tulad ng ginawa nila sa ibang bahura. Ngayon, may isa pang bahura silang pinatatayuan din mga estruktura, at pasok na pasok din ito sa teritoryo ng Pilipinas. Sa kabila nito, walang magawa ang Pilipinas kundi manood!

Paano pang matatanggal ang mga estruktura ng Tsina sa mga bahurang pinag-aagawan, kung yong iba ay kung ilang dekada nang nakatayo at ang isa pa ay patapos na?

Malaki ang tiwala ng Tsina sa kakayahan nito ngayon pagdating sa mga bagay na may kinalaman sa kaunlaran – pang-ekonomiya man o pandigma. At dahil dito, hindi basta-basta yuyuko ito sa anumang ipag-uutos ng maski isang international Court. Nakikita ng Tsina na humihina ang United Nations bilang organisasyon ng mga bansa. Wala itong nagawa sa mga nangyayaring kaguluhan sa Middle East at Yuropa. Nakikita at nararamdaman ng Tsina ang kahinaan ng Amerika na dinadaan na lang sa verbal bluff ang mga babala. Napahiya si Obama nang may ilang bansa sa Middle East na hindi lubos na nagbigay sa kanya ng supurta upang “mapulbos” ang Islamic State (IS). Kaya ano pa ang magagawa nito sa Southeast Asia na ang ekonomiya nga lang ay nakagapos na sa Tsina? ….kaya kahit toothpick at cotton buds ng mga bansang miyembro ng ASEAN ay galing Tsina!

Malamang sa malamang, kompromiso ang mangyayari sa West Philippine Sea kung saan hahayaan na lang na pangasiwaan ng Tsina ang mga bahurang napatayuan na nito ng mga estruktura, dahil wala naman talagang kakayahang bumangga ang Pilipinas dito. Maaaring naghihintay lamang ang Tsina ng isang provocative na kilos ng Pilipinas upang gumawa ito ng nakakabahalang aksiyon…na sana ay hindi mangyari. Kaya, kung sa tanong na may magagawa pa ang Pilipinas, sa kabila ng mga inihain nitong reklamo sa international court…para sa akin, ang sagot ay isang malungkot na…wala.