Pluralism in the Philippines

Powerful Essays
Topics: Philippines
PRELIMINARY EXAM
IN
POLITICAL SCIENCE

Boado, Denniele Yvet O.
PS1313
Sir Agnes
1. Discuss elitism in the Philippines in the context of Patron-Client or Bossism framework. Use concrete data from other references to support your discussion.

Elitism is the rule of the minority in whose hands power, wealth or privilege is concentrated in a society, justifiably or not, regardless of the political system (Heywood89).

Elitism in Philippine politics started during the Spanish colonial era, but wasexacerbated and cemented by the Americans during their occupation of the Philippines.They instituted their democracy in the Philippines, and distributed the lands confiscatedfrom the friars to the Filipinos who supported their regime. This started the rise of thepolitical elites in the proinces (Escobia "Discussion on Philippine Political Culture: ASummary").

Bossism is a pejorative typically applied to leaders who control the selection of their political party 's candidates for elected office and dispense patronage without regard for the public interest. The power of a boss turns on his ability to select single-handedly the candidates who will win an election. Indebted elected representatives then turn the reigns of government over to the boss, who makes policy decisions and uses government jobs and revenue to employ party loyalists and fund party functions. (http://www.encyclopedia.com/doc/1G2-3401800522.html)

According to Sidel, “Of all the countries of Southeast Asia, the Philippines offers the most obvious case of local strongmen through which to re-examine the scholarly literature sketched above. Scholars and other commentators have long emphasised both the predominance of patron-client relations and the persistence of a landowning élite in the archipelago. Elections – local, congressional, and national – in the Philippines have long been dominated by local politicians and ‘political clans’ known to enjoy not only political longevity but



References: 14. Carl Lande, Leaders, Factions, and Parties: The Structure of Philippine Politics (NewHaven: Yale University Southeast Asia Studies, 1965), p. 2. 15. John Thayer Sidel, Coercion, Capital, and The Post-Colonial State: Bossism in The Postwar Philippines, Ph. D. dissertation, Cornell University, 1995, pp.42-43.

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