Another "Central Issue".. Na Naman

What is Good Governance?

Let’s get our definitions straight. I prefer the definition provided by the World Bank. As defined by the World Bank – Good Governance is the government’s ability to:

1) Ensure political transparency and voice for all citizens,

2) Provide efficient and effective public services,

3) Promote the health and well-being of its citizens, and

4) Create a favorable climate for stable economic growth.

These four items in the list are considered key drivers or components that make up good governance.

Wikipedia further states:

Good governance is an indeterminate term used in development literature to describe how public institutions conduct public affairs and manage public resources in order to guarantee the realization of human rights.[1]  Governance describes “the process of decision-making and the process by which decisions are implemented (or not implemented)”.[1] The term governance can apply to corporate, international, national, local governance [1] or to the interactions between other sectors of society.

The concept of “good governance” often emerges as a model to compare ineffective economies or political bodies with viable economies and political bodies.[2] Because the most “successful” governments in the contemporary world are liberal democratic states concentrated in Europe and the Americas, those countries’ institutions often set the standards by which to compare other states’ institutions.[2] Because the term good governance can be focused on any one form of governance, aid organizations and the authorities of developed countries often will focus the meaning of good governance to a set of requirement that conform to the organizations agenda, making “good governance” imply many different things in many different contexts.

The United Nations emphasizes reform through human development and political institution reform.[9] According to the UN, good governance has eight characteristics. Good governance is[1]:

* Consensus Oriented
* Participatory
* Following the Rule of Law
* Effective and Efficient
* Accountable
* Transparent
* Responsive
* Equitable and Inclusive

The UNESCAP elaborates:

WHAT   IS   GOOD   GOVERNANCE?Recently the terms “governance” and “good governance” are being increasingly used in development literature. Bad governance is being increasingly regarded as one of the root causes of all evil within our societies. Major donors and international financial institutions are increasingly basing their aid and loans on the condition that reforms that ensure “good governance” are undertaken.

This article tries to explain, as simply as possible, what “governance” and “good governance” means.

GOVERNANCE

The concept of “governance” is not new. It is as old as human civilization. Simply put “governance” means: the process of decision-making and the process by which decisions are implemented (or not implemented). Governance can be used in several contexts such as corporate governance, international governance, national governance and local governance.

Since governance is the process of decision-making and the process by which decisions are implemented, an analysis of governance focuses on the formal and informal actors involved in decision-making and implementing the decisions made and the formal and informal structures that have been set in place to arrive at and implement the decision.

Government is one of the actors in governance. Other actors involved in governance vary depending on the level of government that is under discussion. In rural areas, for example, other actors may include influential land lords, associations of peasant farmers, cooperatives, NGOs, research institutes, religious leaders, finance institutions political parties, the military etc. The situation in urban areas is much more complex. Figure 1 provides the interconnections between actors involved in urban governance. At the national level, in addition to the above actors, media, lobbyists, international donors, multi-national corporations, etc. may play a role in decision-making or in influencing the decision-making process.

All actors other than government and the military are grouped together as part of the “civil society.” In some countries in addition to the civil society, organized crime syndicates also influence decision-making, particularly in urban areas and at the national level.

Similarly formal government structures are one means by which decisions are arrived at and implemented. At the national level, informal decision-making structures, such as “kitchen cabinets” or informal advisors may exist. In urban areas, organized crime syndicates such as the “land Mafia” may influence decision-making. In some rural areas locally powerful families may make or influence decision-making. Such, informal decision-making is often the result of corrupt practices or leads to corrupt practices.

GOOD GOVERNANCE

Good governance has 8 major characteristics. It is participatory, consensus oriented, accountable, transparent, responsive, effective and efficient, equitable and inclusive and follows the rule of law. It assures that corruption is minimized, the views of minorities are taken into account and that the voices of the most vulnerable in society are heard in decision-making. It is also responsive to the present and future needs of society.

Political View Does Not Translate to Good Governance

A moronic piece (and thousands more of pieces like it) through its convoluted logic, would have you believe that Aquino automatically stands for good governance just because he is against Arroyo. Believe you me, suckers fall for this line – hook, line, and sinker. Bumibenta na sa takilya at.. bumibenta ba rin. UNBELIBABOY!

The Aquino camp pulls a fast one by by mangling the definition of good governance and limiting it to being Anti-Arroyo only.  With the WB definition as reference, the Aquino camp plays up Item #1- Transparency – BUT does PLAYS DOWN ITEMS 2-Efficient and Effective Services, 3-Health Care, and 4-The Economy!

Here’s how the logic goes:

A-  The Arroyo government is synonymous with bad governance.

B – The opposite of bad governance is good governance.

C – Aquino opposes Arroyo (bad governance)

D – Since Aquino opposes Arroyo (bad governance) and B applies, Aquino therefore must stand for good governance.

E – Aquino is synonymous to good governance.

Never mind if these people (behind Noynoy and the Aquino administration) – 2) HAVE NOT PROVIDED efficient and effective public services, 3) HAVE NOT promoted the health and well-being of its citizens, and 4) HAVE NOT create a favorable climate for stable economic growth. Heck, the Aquino Administration wasn’t even transparent and the voice of its citizens wasn’t heard when the CARP was eviscerated.

By the same logic, Gordon, and Villar can stand for good governance – because they are against Arroyo.

What can I say? Just because Aquino is against Arroyo politically, does not mean that Aquino automatically stands for good governance.

There is no proof that an Aquino administration will  ensure political transparency and voice for all citizens either.

Supporting Noynoy Aquino are, the personalities behind the former Aquino administration, people who weren’t exactly paragons of good governance.  Remember Kamag-anak Inc and Council of Trent? Kamag-anak Inc. was a term concocted by the late columnist Luis Beltran pertaining to the relatives of Cory who were said to be abusing their connection in getting contracts, appropriating for themselves some of Imelda’s jewelry collections, power tripping in sports committees, etc. Beltran also popularized the terms Council of Trent (Cory’s advisers) peninsulares, insulares, etc.

These people HAVE NOT PROVIDED efficient and effective public services, HAVE NOT promoted the health and well-being of its citizens, and 4) HAVE NOT create a favorable climate for stable economic growth.

For short, if these are the people who will benefit from a Noynoy a victory, a Noynoy administration will have all the characteristics of bad governance – inefficient, ineffective, apathetic, protectionist and pro-oligarch.

Just because you are politically opposed to Arroyo, does not mean that you are efficient and effective and able to grow the economy rationally…. NO SIR.

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18 comments

  1. There is no proof that IGNOY has governed anything… so what’s the fuzz about the definitions of governance? As for transparency… the supporters are good at sugar coating… at creating myths. WHAT THEY HAVE ARE THEORIES.

    THAT IF…. YADA YADA NOYNOY would become… then we’ll have good governance

    THAT IF… YADA YADA NONOY sits… then we have a government that is transparent

    Election campaigns is not about the PYUTYUR… its about the past… SINS OF OMISSIONS AND COMMISSIONS… as well as PERFORMANCE and NON-PERFORMANCE

    … it is about character that needs to be matched with his to-do list… (platform or whatever he wants to call it)

    My opinion is that the voting decision of voters (ceteris paribus) can be classified into two types.

    The first type (the minority according to Mangahas survey) will think this way:

    CHARACTER + (POSITIVE PAST PERFORMANCE ISSUE /PLATFORM ISSUES) – SINS = VOTING PROBABILITY

    The second type will vote like this

    GUT FEEL + MEDIA BIASES + HUMAN NETWORK BIASES = VOTING PROBABILITY
    (ahhh BASTA SI IGNOY ANG IBOBOTO KO!!!!)

  2. what sta ana said: “Of all the main candidates for president, Noynoy is the only one who has identified the country’s main challenge at this juncture — repudiating the bad governance that has harmed Philippine economic and political life.”

    isnt this true? his platform identifies bad governance specifically, and arroyo is only an instance of it. in fact, when you write:

    “The Aquino camp pulls a fast one by by mangling the definition of good governance and limiting it to being Anti-Arroyo only. With the WB definition as reference, the Aquino camp plays up Item #1- Transparency – BUT does PLAYS DOWN ITEMS 2-Efficient and Effective Services, 3-Health Care, and 4-The Economy!”

    he, infact, mentions those things. i’m not saying he’s got details, but i am saying all these things are included in his platform.

    btw, happy new year!

  3. As pointed out – his platform are administrative solutions to matters that have deeper socio economic underpinnings. Therefore, his approach is a palliative which does not address the pro-oligarch protectionist charter.

    And, as you yourself point out – he does not have details, which makes his statements – motherhood statements, vaporware – long on promise, short on specifics.

  4. what sta ana said: “Of all the main candidates for president, Noynoy is the only one who has identified the country’s main challenge at this juncture — repudiating the bad governance that has harmed Philippine economic and political life.”

    isnt this true? his platform identifies bad governance specifically, and arroyo is only an instance of it. in fact, when you write:

    Come now, Mr. GabbyD. The fact is everyone knows that the Philippines suffers from bad governance. Even Noynoy knows this (despite his cluelessness about most things). That Noynoy would use “bad governance” as his other central issue and then not to provide any concrete detail about (1) any proposed solution to it and (2) a description of proposed steps to apply said solution just highlights further the insult to Pinoys’ already meager intelligence that his campaign represents.

    What he basically does is highlight the alleged “bad governance” of the incumbent (Opposition 101) to imply the goodness of his. Any moron can do that without providing any detail around how (a) he defines good governance, (b) plans to apply it, and (c) what specific changes are required to sustain it.

    Thus the triumph of moronism in a society that continues to be a chronic failure.

    As Carlo Ople mentions in his recent article The cult of Noynoy Aquino:

    Let me just set the record straight. Noynoy Aquino is riding on a campaign of integrity and character. He keeps on saying that this election is a battle between the “good” and the “evil” (therefore saying that he’s good and everyone else is bad). If that’s the case, then all the more reason for him to answer these issues. The Hacienda massacre is no joke. We’re talking about people dying and getting shot at. It’s about children losing their parents and vice-versa. If someone who claims to be a person of integrity and character defends that, then our value system must be totally screwed up. The more his campaign harps on how his campaign is a moral one, then the need for him to resolve this grows as well.

    Trouble with a campaign of zero-substance is that those who undertake it inadvertently contradict their own positions and further insult the intelligence of the Filipino.

  5. CHARACTER = is a vector of experiences, ability to implement changes (through experiences)

    As far as governance is concerned, he may have defined the problem… but he doesn’t have the CHARACTER to implement it… To types of problem definition… general and specifics… ergo, Ignoy flunked his thesis.

    … bottom-line… walk the talk…

  6. […] [On AntiPinoy.com, BongV explores in detail the flawed pitch of most Pinoy oppositions' so-called "central" issues of "integrity" and "governance"] […]

  7. Joe America · ·

    BongV,

    Yes, the article makes a good point, and your observation that Mr. Aquino’s platform contains “administrative solutions to matters that have deeper socio economic underpinnings” is right to the core of the problem.

    But so far, I have seen no call, either by candidates or blogwriters, to articulate practical ways to re-stack the socio-economic cultural deck. Oops, wrong, you have called for open foreign investment, and that is one way. But there are other ways, too.

    For example, if one recognizes that a nation of laws works right only if its courts work right, one would forget about redrafting the Constitution, as it is just so much toilet paper thrown to the wind of a broken judiciary and focus on laws and processes that mandate independent, efficient, capable, free courts. Let the people speak through the courts and the wrongs that are rampant today would get righted; the incompetent killer ferry operators would not get by with a simple slapped hand if relatives of those killed drove the retribution process. Until hard action like that is taken, the malaise that is too often the Philippines will simply exist on.

    There are solutions, if the empowered are truly interested in the well being of the Philippines.

    Joe

  8. bong, its totally OK to disagree with his solutions, calling them `administrative’, or a `paliative’. or even the lack of details. these differences are the heart of the democratic process. i also expect details to come from his within a month.

    but it CANT be OK to say to attribute to him something that he didnt do, or to not attribute to him what he did do.

    its clear that this :”The Aquino camp pulls a fast one by by mangling the definition of good governance and limiting it to being Anti-Arroyo only. ”

    is not true.

    he doesnt limit his platform to that alone.

    neither is it true that he PLAYS DOWN: “-Efficient and Effective Services, 3-Health Care, and 4-The Economy”” its in his platform.

    in fact, its little exageration to say that his ENTIRE platform is good governance. this is how he’ll position himself in this election.

    you can disagree with his emphasis, or his lack of detail, but you cant accuse him of not running on good governance.

  9. GabbyD:

    he is running on “anti-arroyo”.

    To equate being “anti-arroyo” as “good governance” is incorrect.

    “anti-arroyo” does not necessarily mean efficiency, robust economy, and healthy people.

    to be precise, being “anti-marcos” does not necessarily mean “good governance”. cory was “anti-marcos” but she was inefficient, the economy was limited to oligarchs, and healthy care was limited to the wealthy – she was against marcos/bad governance, but the Aquino government wasn’t good either.

    actually, he has positioned his campaign along the lines of governance – presenting governance as being “anything against arroyo” no matter if arroyo is correct.

    moreover, the term administrative is used in various studies conducted by official development agencies which showed that changes in administrative procedures or changes in administrative structures didn’t do much when there is not enough economic opportunities going around.

    as long as there is a dearth of economic opportunities, administrative procedures will be circumvented in order to generate revenue before someone else does.

  10. One cannot talk about governance if one does not have any EXPERIENCE about it. Ignoy governance is just a lip service. I HAVEN’T DONE IT… I WILL DO IT? ewwwwwww.

    …ergo… WALK THE TALK…

  11. Mongrels, bozos, enablers.

    Campaigning via soundbytes works, and the soundbites of “GMA talsik diyan!”, “fight corruption!!!”, “good versus evil!” still inspire many Pinoys. [I am amazed that these two soundbites are not popular in Pinas. “A chicken in every pot” — ehhh. “Jobs, jobs, jobs!” No.]

    A solution to fluffy soundbytes will be the “thinking class”, leaders of society —- Ellen Tordesillas and other media, Randy David and other teachers, the “running priest” and other religious — but these leaders of society leave the thought that they are enablers more than leaders.

  12. It’s obvious that the Noynoy camp – or anyone with their own definition of good governance – just wants everyone to follow them. They want to be the new dictators of an order… nothing much different from Hitler or the Khmer Rouge. Although these guys use violence. The self-definers of good governance don’t. But they still want to control others. Accuse the World Bank of being a dictator of an order too? Haha. As you know, they’re an international organization that helps nations. If anyone knows what good governance is, it’s them.

  13. Joe:

    The oligarchs own the courts – and have risen bolstered by winds given to it by the rent capture policies in the Constitution.

    You can only address a wrong so much before you realize that it’s not the service delivery processes that are out of whack.

    Rather, there’s not much to deliver in the first place and people are willing to dish out grease money to ensure they get a first crack at the goodies.

    Ferry operators have been at it for decades – you know the three names in this industry – Gothong, Chongbian, and Aboitiz – who are buddies with Lopez, Tan, Ayala and co.

    No one’s going to jail, Lopez and ABS-CBN will give it the usual treatment – raise condemnation, pull the plug, back to regular WOWOWEE programming; government is relieved of pressure, claims (or none even) are shoved down people’s throats.. and ABS-CBN will have the melodrama for its ratings.

    I’ve seen these rituals for too long.

  14. A solution to fluffy soundbytes will be the “thinking class”, leaders of society —- Ellen Tordesillas and other media, Randy David and other teachers, the “running priest” and other religious — but these leaders of society leave the thought that they are enablers more than leaders

    Yes, these people have created a clique i would call the Establishment of the Anti-Establishment. In short, these popular “analysts” and “experts” of Pinoy society have institutionalised anti-establishmentism so much so that some morons out there actually consider the street moronism known as “people power” as a legitimate part of democratic processes for changing government officials and this whole patalsikin-na-now-na into some kind of fashionable buzzword of the self-described “socially-aware”.

    Takes a real vacuous society to eat up all that crap.

  15. Joe America · ·

    BongV,

    Yes, but that does not mean one should retreat into silence.

    Joe

  16. “he is running on “anti-arroyo”.”

    i dont see that from his platform, his published interviews, at all.

    if you’ve got a direct quote from him/his campaign that he is mainly anti-arroyo, i’d be glad 2 see it. as it is, arroyo gets 1 line on his platform. 1 line doesnt make for “running on anti-arroyo”.

  17. GabbyD:

    Actually…. Noynoy has NOT said anything… at all… it’s all his handlers doing the talking… 😀
    which makes a Noynoy .. autistic? MORONIC? IDIOTIC? DUMB? 😀

    Can you imagine Obama NOT talking.. NOT categorically laying down his position… THEN asking you to vote for him based on his name.. and good governance.. and nothing to show for it (not even an experience as a community organizer) 🙂

  18. gabbyd… repeat after me…. IGNOY IS RUNNING on “ANTI-ARROYO” campaign

    again gabbd repeat… IGNOY IS RUNNING on “ANTI-ARROYO” campaign

    proof…

    under his so-called CREDO or SOCIAL CONTRACT WITH THE FILIPINO PEOPLE (his own definition of the “Taong Bayan) under the COMMITMENT TO TRANSFORMATIONAL LEADERSHIP the platform of the morons states that :

    “from a president who tolerates corruption”…. haleeeeeeeeeer…. if you have a flawed logic… the president that being referred to by this moronic credo is arroyo.

    gabbyd… IGNOY IS RUNNING A FUNERAL CAMPAIGN

    “the millions connected with Cory at her funeral represented something more than euphoria… ”

    gabbyd… IGNOY IS BANKING ON HIS PARENTS NAME

    “Anchored on Ninoy’s and Cory’s legacy of change…”

    CONCLUSION:

    ________________________________________

    (if you gabbyD still can’t fill in the blank… you’re a hopeless case)

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