Jurassic Pork Barrel

There are dinosaurs in our midst.

Those ugly and ferocious reptiles of politics who dip their dirty hands on the Pork Barrel funds.

We are either living in a world called Pera Nova (Terra Nova) or Jurassic Pork (Jurassic Park).

They are more popularly called “buwayas” or crocodiles. But it seems they should more likely be called dinosaurs because many of them are not living in dreaded mosquito-infested swamps. They have migrated into bigger and fancy abodes in the cities, splurging on fine dining cuisines, globe-trotting in tourists and vacation spots almost every weekend, totting expensive Barong Tagalogs or suits, and have grown huge and powerful enough to crush you under their bare feet. They have become powerful not just because of the authority, but because they have a more potent form of ravaging into supremacy, and that is with their pork barrel funds.

Pork barrel is the appropriation of government spending for localized projects secured solely or primarily to bring money to a representative’s district

Inadvertently, almost half of the appropriated funds for the projects ends up in the pocket of corrupt officials in connivance with unethical businessmen. The result is a substandard work condoned by contractors and government officials alike.

There is hardly any occasion for a soft infrastructure project like scholarships, medical assistance and such or any hard infrastructure projects like roads, bridges and buildings and others, that is not tainted with corruptions and kickbacks. It is usually a case of you scratch my back and I scratch yours.

I have yet to hear a politician promising to work towards the abolition of the American style PORK BARREL which in 1990 redesignated with innocent sounding name of Countrywide Development Fund (CDF ), and when this newly named system still reeks, it was rebaptized in 2000 with the current monicker Priority Development Assistance Fund (PDAF).

In common parlance Pork Barrel or any other name such as PDAF or CDF is almost already synonymous with corruption since it is highly susceptible to corrupt practices inspite of provisions and safeguards and accountability provided in the system. The original name of this system Pork Barrel insinuates the derisive tradition of its American origin of unbridled patronage or spoils of political wars. This system still smells even disguised as CDF or PDAF just like the opposite adage of a rose is a rose and smells as sweet in any other name.

The ordinary people not benefited by the immoral although legal largesse from the Pork Barrel are too timid to complain or file grievances against the TraPos for fear of reprisals from their private armies and henchmen or high powered lawyers in the their pay.

The Filipino Nation is waiting for a political candidate to make a promise, admittedly difficult to keep but not impossible to realize, to abrogate totally the Pork Barrel System also known as CDF and PDAF, and not replaced with any new name. The Filipino People deserves a Pork Barrel free government after so many years of wallowing in their graft and corruption infested/prone system of Pork Barrel.

Will the candidate with the real interest of the long suffering Filipino Nation in his heart please stand up and be counted. Please abolish the Pork Barrel System in any form or name. We the people salute you and we will support you in your endeavour.

I believe that when we finally abolish the distribution of the pork barrel, the unscrupulous dinosaurs of politics will slowly cease to exist, and become extinct just like the dinosaurs themselves.

*credits to Ven Del Pilar Faundo

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