Doomsday scenarios of all forms – from the prophetic to the scientifically formulated – have become a favorite topic as 2012 dawns. For most of the Filipinos though, the New Year still means hope rather than the end of the world.
Filipinos’ New Year optimism even reached a record high of 95 percent based on the latest survey by pollster Social Weather Stations (SWS). The result is two points higher than the 93 percent who welcomed 2011 with hope. It should be noted however the the survey was done before tropical storm Sendong wrought devastation in parts of Mindanao and Visayas.
The record-high optimism however does not sit well with the ailing state of the local economy and the continued global economic slump. Serious economic challenges stare us in the face even as we look somewhere else greener. For one, the country’s growth has been on a steady slowdown since the fourth quarter of 2009. Thanks to the Aquino administration’s active tit-for-tat with the judiciary and the Arroyo camp, tell-tale signs of an economy in distress were perfectly drowned in mainstream discussions.