[last-minute insertion] TaN: The recent policy change (effective July 2015) of Security Bank and Trust Company regarding its savings accounts is unfairly discriminatory and unethically biased in favor of the bank. The policy computes interest only if and when the amount in the account is not less than 100,000, which is way beyond the reach of the ordinary depositor.
It would appear that the bank is discriminating against low-income depositors and is trying to follow in the footsteps of Wells Fargo Bank, which has recently — a couple of years ago — set itself up to serve only the wealthy or to businesses…those with millions to deposit. And what makes the policy more despicable and especially usurious is that, while the depositor’s money is below the minimum to earn interest, the bank is taking advantage of it. It will be able to lend out the money or invest it without having to pay interest.
This is against the basic tenet of banking where it is supposed to be a repository of the public’s money for safekeeping. The bank is implicitly given the permission to use and lend out the money to borrowers or to invest in money-making ventures for the purpose of maintaining its financial viability and to give interest to the depositors’ money as some sort of a commission or compensation for the privilege to use the deposited money. The money deposited, regardless of the amount, should earn interest because every bit of the money is involved in the bank’s profit-making activities so it is but right that interest should be given to the last cent.
Should the policy of restricting the interest earned by a deposited amount to a certain minimum level, in order to be just and ethical, the bank should not used any deposited amount below the minimum that it has set for the money to earn interest. This is but fair. To be or do otherwise is usurious — not in the traditional sense (i.e., unreasonably high interest rates) but in somewhat the opposite manner (i.e., it is the unreasonably low or no interest for the privilege to use of the money).
So which or what is it?
TaN: Under ideal conditions (and logical argument), products and services tend to improve which benefits consumers whenever there is competition. However, cartelization — whether it is admitted or not — defeats the purpose and is how unscrupulous businesses get around their “obligation” or need to vie for the patronage of consumers by trying to outdo their rivals.
In order to ensure that there is true competition (and not merely a semblance through cartelization), it is necessary that there be a service or product that is offered or available (to the public) for free or free of cost. Moreover, this free service or product must evolve and improve. This way, business will be forced to evolve and improve in parallel — i.e., to keep up — else they be left behind and ignored by consumers. For-profit services and products must continuously improve or become irrelevant and outdated — and lose customer base.
This is where the “exclusivity or monopolistic” period of patents and the strict and just implementation or enforcement of the expiration — as well as the spirit of the principle behind the concept of patent — must be observed. A span of 5 years is more than enough time for the patent holder to recoup (expenses and loses) and be compensated for his/her efforts and creativity. The current span of 20 years is too much. Moreover, the move to even extend the period even longer is outright and blatant selfishness and immoral. Still, the practice of “tweaking” just enough to extend or re-patent is pure greed.
It is high time that products and services be developed and put into the public domain and common good to “compete” with for-profit products and services to provide consumers with the true concept and benefit of right to chose — for the right to choose is not about or regarding choosing between competing products and services but between making a purchase and refusing one. This concept of the right to choose is frequently and commonly misunderstood by the majority as choosing between competitors or rivals where it is not the consumer but the producer/manufacturer that comes out the “winner” because in any case, the consumer makes a purchase. The true right to choose is between choosing to participate — in this case, to make a purchase — or not.
To break cartelization, it is necessary to put out a product or service that is free in order to force the cartel to improve otherwise the consumer will opt for what is free.
TaN: The Philippines is a religious country but it is not truly Christian, especially in the case of business and government — at least those that get publicized, because it would appear that the saying “There are many unsung heroes” hold true as well in the Philippines just like in other countries. However, unsung heroes are not completely off the hook just because they are being “Christians” (by actively and devoutly) practicing Christian values and teachings — i.e., those from the Holy Scriptures and not from mere dictates and say-sos of man and self-proclaimed preachers and so-called evangelists. Christians, to be truly worthy and deserving of the name (or label), should not be docile and “humble” about their Christianity but declare it to the world to make a strong and united public opinion.
Christ was not silent; He was not “ambivalent” of His beliefs and convictions; He was headstrong in ensuring thst everyone concerned or intended heard, saw, and knew His message of what is right and which is wrong and what should be done and what should not, and the proper way of dealing with the responsibilities and events that transpire in one’s life.
For the Philippines, the religiosity does not translate to Christianity and evil is prominent though not necessarily rampant and widespread.
The point of all this is the hypocrisy of claiming and proclaiming that the Philippines is the only Christian country in its region when, in fact, it is from being a Christian country. Otherwise, if it were truly a Christian country, it would not be in its sorry state today — which just keeps getting worse with each passing moment — what with all the corruption, killings, animosity, crimes and felonies and misdemeanors, violations of human rights, unnecessary misery and suffering and hunger and deprivation, and inequalities (wealth, opportunities, treatment, access…in almost anything and everything that comes to mind).
Truly, if the Philippines were a Christian country, it would be paradise on earth. It would be the envy of all nations. It would be the most advanced country in the world.
And the worst of the lot are businesses practices that not only centered but even is confined to making profits with ethics out the window, and with the connivance of government, which is in the pocket of (Big) Business.
As for the clergy and the others who are supposed to be the vanguards of Christianity? I do not want to go into this as of yet…
TaN: It is irritating enough to hear people speak improper language, but to have it in print advertisements — really, proofreading is dead — is really shuddering. I am referring to a common but unforgivable “mortal sin” of using the phrase “Top 3” when what it actually meant was the 3rd from the highest or top. And to even send chills down one’s spine is the phrase “Top 1”!
Come on English professors with your PhDs teaching in the collegiate or tertiary education. What are your doctoral degrees for? Are these not your products? What kind of quality education are you delivering when your graduates (or undergraduates) speak like that. It is not merely embarrassing but downright pitiful. And to think one is no longer accepted to teach in college without post-graduate degrees and this is what your students learn from you?
And to compound the problem, it is bad enough that the ad agency contracted to make the advertisement employs people with a bad command of the (English) language, the media outfits that publish the ads do not even make the effort to “correct” or at least inform the client-advertiser that their ad’s grammar is deplorably shameful and that it will ultimately reflect on their public image. But then again, considering the present state of the IQ (intelligence quotient) of the general population, it usually goes unnoticed. How pitiful.
In conclusion, if one does not have mastery or even just average fluency of a language, please refrain from using it, especially in public. Do not try to project an image of “sophistication and expertise” only to be revealed to be a boastful moron. Use the language which you are most familiar and competent in. Have some shame for yourself.