Thursday, April 24, 2008

THE GRAIN HEADACHE: Musing on the Philippine Rice Crisis (Part II)

[I have decided to run a series of entries concerning the present Rice Crisis in the country]

[Disclaimer: Again, all seeming inaccuracies that may be found herein should be blamed only to me as it’s been days since the conversation that is described below has happened.]

“Media, media, media; yellow, yellow press”
Coffee break…so to speak. I was with two superiors and the conversation was led to the show in GMA 7 air last Sunday (April 20) which included one of those superiors of mine. I think Richard Gutierrez was the host of the show and sadly enough, there were a lot of cut times in it, as was said by my superior. (I am yet to watch it.) Well it’s quite sad to know that sometimes, media seems to choose what they really want to project to the public. And being choosy in information and facts is not really that good I think. Facts are to be bared as they are. A part of the program concerned the question of the climate change being one of the reasons for the current rice crisis.

Not yet for the Rice
Well just to make things short, it’s not yet. Although it is not undeniable that climate change is now seen all around the world, the change seems to play around 0.7 degree Celsius, a change indeed, but not enough to make a significant effect on the rice. For any change or effect to be effected, a two-degree change should do it all. But for now, it’s still not a reigning factor. (And so if it’s not, what?)

A Web of intricate factors
And it looked like more complicated that what I first thought it was. I cannot really put down the exact exchange of statements that went between us three, but upon the flow of arguments so to speak, the bottom line still is the population increase in the country. Production per se is really ample, for lack of a better term, but the ever-increasing number of Filipinos, with a rate that is really fast (I cannot put here any estimate because I really forgot it). So that’s it, even one of those superiors said that THERE ISN’T NO RICE CRISIS AT ALL. (How about that?) This population rise is the culprit!

I wonder…
I cannot exactly recall if I asked to them the question whether it is after all related to the increase of oil prices plus some of the main food products. Baka nakisasabay lang talaga?
Anyway, this is a fact: we import rice and it is this vision (can it really be called a vision?) of rice crises moved certain countries like India and Vietnam or Thailand (I am not accusing but these are the countries that I remembered mentioned) to hold their rice intended for exportation plus the hoarding of our VERY OWN traders and middlemen that consequently contributed to this SEEMING CRISIS.

Seeming Crisis
Seeming crisis indeed as far as I can understand it and as far as the conversations that we had is concerned. I would not elaborate on the seeming sensationalism of the media AS A WHOLE. Hey it must be clear right now that I am not pinpointing. I said as a whole. I seem now to recall the lectures I’ve attended during the schools press conferences in my earlier school days. Well they said that not all of that we see, that we hear from the media is 100% accurate…true. Well then, prove them wrong if it’s worth it. For now, it’s making lot of disappointment. Tsk. Why do I say so? Because until I realized it, I was not really not aware that indeed some of the things happening in country and all the information and facts associated with them are being painted in WHOLE DIFFERENT PICTURE when projected to the people. But that’s another story. =)

[More on this topic…to be continued.]
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