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Perplexed's blog

For those of you who don't know Jordan Clarkson is an nba player with the la lakers. I became aware of him when my wifes uncle pointed at him on the screen and proudly proclaimed that he was a filipino, straight away i was skeptical due to his physical size so i did some research he is a 1/4 filipino and born and raised in florida (but he does for some reason have filipino citzenship in addition to being american) yet thecway filipinos carry on about him you would think hes from the slums of manila and has fought his way up to the nba !

This made me recall an event a few years ago, my wife was watching some nonsense filipino tv amd they were having some nominees for pinoy of the year or such b.s anyway of the 10 candidates only one was based in the Philippines and they were a group of attractive early twenty somethings (probably from rich families) who went around tropical locations and callèd themselves 'environmentalists' the rest were all ofws or part filipinos from the USA. 


Has anyone else noticed this, that pinoys will claim anyone abroad they can amd pump it for all its worth? I have asked some filipinos about it and even they admit that it is embarrassing.


Oh and by the way there has never been a filipino born player in the nba.

Education in tbe Philippines? Or is it more a business?


Now i think i have this right, but please correct me if I'm wrong,.

In tbe Philippines students effectively start tertiary learning at tbe age of 16 ! My wifes cousin is 17 and he tells me hes doing some marketing major and it will last five or six years (fees chaching !) So i guess this means that 16 year old kids choose their future careers at a very immature age and hey guess what they all flock to stuff like tourism and marketing (i.e the trendy subjects).


And the length of time to study for these degrees seems excessive, two of my wifes young relatives (now early twenties) studied tourism and there degrees took nearly six years ! Thats longer than an engineering degree in most places and one of them seemed to always be going on overseas field trips on his parents ofw money (without telling them) how a degree in tourism can be six years is beyond me...


And her other relative chose his new marketing major at the age of 16, now it isn't my place to interfere but i wanted to tell his parents to put a stop to it, I've known this kid for a few years and he won't hack it in marketing, which is ultra competitive, simply because he is lazy he tells me he wants to be an ofw, i personally won't be putting my reputation on the blick by recommending him, i guess he'll be at sm on a six month contract selling briefs !


One other thing I've noticed is how a degree is needed to do anything in the Philippines, no degree no job so it seems there are a lot of institutions popping up which must be a money spinner for someone !

Hello all, this is the third in a series on Filipinos and their finances, this will focus on OFWs and Loans, credit cards and tax.


Firstly I would like to thank fellow user SaraFin (hope that is spelt correctly !) for posting a picture that perfectly illustrates the stress of the succubus family on the OFW, the picture actually links to the following site


http://www.rappler.com/move-ph/ispeak/58513-ofw-life


This appears to be written by an OFW and has some pretty good advice, it is interesting to note that over 50% of it directly or indirectly is warnings about family and friends trying to rip them off.


Anyway...


1. Loans, Credit cards and Kabayhan loan sharks.


This is a story relayed to me by a friend who is a manager (effectively 3rd in charge) of a marine survey company in Abu Dhabi about one of his filipino staff.


The staff member in question earned a salary of AED 20,000 per month, tax-free , this is the eqivelant of 240,000 pesos a month (just over 2.5 million a year) which is a pretty penny in the philippines and significantly more than the majority of filipinos earn abroad.

Anyway one day my friend gets a call from this guy claiming he is being held at the police station for a bounced cheque (bouncing a cheque is a criminal offence in the U.A.E and the holder of the cheque can present it and the police are obliged to pick up the debtor) so my friend and his boss go down there to see if they can help.

They get to the station and my friend and his boss are pulled aside by one of the senior officers and he tells them "Your guy is in to a loan shark, we know who she is, she is a filipina who takes money from other filipinos as an investment and then goes to the church/filipino restaurants and offers to loan money to those who can't get it from banks, usually those who are in credit card debt, she promises the investors a 2.5% return a month and charges the borrowers 5% a month and keeps the difference for herself, but before she loans the money she gets them to hand over their passports and a cheque in the amount of the total of the loan, when they miss a payment to her, she tries to encash it knowing it will bounce and she then presents it here with the bank letter and we are obliged to pick up these guys and hold them here." The officer then says he can legally release the guy if they can pay what he owes on the monthly installments, which is AED 10,000 (P120,000) so my friends boss (who is quite wealthy) agrees to pay it from his own personal finances and the guy is released. When back at the office my friend and his boss take this guy into the boss's office and try to work out what has happened, they know that he only takes the bus (AED 5 per day so AED 30 per week max.) and he lives in a sharing situation (AED 1200/month) so he's effectively got AED 18,000 for food and all other expenses, so he should have ample money left over, his family live back in the Philippines so that is obviously cheaper than having them in Abu Dhabi. My friend and his boss (who knows he'll never get his money repaid) after half an hour get to the bottom of this, this guy had four credit cards, all maxed out and a personal loan from the bank, he was only able to make the base payments (i.e: covering the interest only) so he needed this loan shark money to close three of the cards and pay off the loan from the bank, so he now has one card and this loan shark loan, my friend did the sums and realises after this and all his rent/ transport he basically has only AED 1,000 left for food and anything, when asked why he had so much debt, he was cagey but eventually made references to building homes for family, buying plots of land, paying for relatives educations etc.. This guy will now work to only pay back debt with the threat of jail hanging over his head, he was also lucky not to have been made redundant due to falling oil prices (the firm had to lay off about a third of their staff) my friend told him to tell these family members the truth, liquidate what he could and use that to get the loan shark off his back, his reply was along the lines of but they are family and they are very poor people............... Maybe he should have read the above link !



This example is a bit shorter but a similair but less desperate story.

I'm at work one day and my wife calls me, apparently one of her friends has been stopped at the airport by the immigration officals who see that her name is flagged as she has missed some payments on her credit card, totalling AED 5,000, (in the U.A.E if a customer misses three credit card payments they can ask the police/immigration to prevent them from leaving the country until debts are paid or an alternative deal is worked out with the bank) so the police have held her passport and told her she has 24hrs to pay what she owes and the bank will drop the charges, so of course my wife and all her friends get a call, so I leave my office in the middle of the day, go to her bank and deposit it directly in to her account and she is cleared to fly, she did pay the money back a few months later. I asked my wife how she got in to debt and my wifes reply was "Its temptation, you see something for sale and you can buy it straight away" so yes she was nearly in jail (if not for me, who actually lives within his means) for fuckin jewellery.


Taxation 

This will be a quick one (I promise !) my wifes uncle was moving to Canada, I asked him what he would be making, he told me and i replied to him , "You do know that in western countries the amount quoted in your salary is always pre-tax" He gave me a confused look, so I showed him a Canadian website that was excellent at showing the amount of federal and provinvial tax he would have to pay, I also told him that living costs are high in western countries, it was unclear if he actually understood (bear in mind this is a man in his late 40s). I had my answer a few months later when back in the philippines when I asked his wife how he was doing "Oh he's good but he didn't realise he had to pay tax on his salary, so now he has to take a second  job." (cue facepalm) but don't worry his family still had the latest iphones, air jordans and other crap. Last i heard he was trying to get into Australia (which is even more expensive than Canada)





Good day all, this now the follow up to my previous post on Filipinos and their finances (something that fascinates me)


THE CURIOUS CASE OF THE OFW


One statistic that I have heard is that OFW remittances account for 10-15% of the Philippines GDP, just think about that, that means that the rest of the world is propping up this country so should immigration laws tighten, what happens then ? Crazy to think about.


Anyway, the majority of filipios seem to aspire to be OFWs, the normal reason is they need money to send their kids to college so they can get a job (as even a low-level job in the Philippines seems to require a degree) so they can support them, this leads a generation of children who are raised by apathetic relatives who see the children as a way to earn extra money and children who view their parents as an ATM who give them gifts when they return from abroad and even if the OFW makes enough cash to support his/her family living abroad they seem to want to keep them in the Philippines.


But the curious case in all this, is where does the money go ? It gets remitted but is never saved, its like saving causes cancer or something because its generally avoided like the plauge, the money comes back and is spent on rubbish like smart phones, basketball boots, label clothing and restaurant visits (all photographed and posted on facebook) then the OFW retires or loses their job and there are no savings and they are back to square one. I always thought the objective of working abroad was to make more money.


Also the behaviour of OFWs abroad is strange, they always seek out the nearest filipino restaurant and congregate around it like blow flies to shit and never even attempt to eat the local food and recoil at the though of it and don't get me started on that pungent smelling fish they cook.


But back to the OFW finances for a minute, whenever an OFW is returning for their annual holiday you can see the air of excitement, the restaurant visits, the outings and of course the pasalumbong !

A few years back, my wifes uncle (who is a decent guy) was returning to the Philippines and he is known to be a generous man who brings gifts for his family, now some of her neices and nephews immediatly started contacting him and putting their requests (i.e: demands) forward and then started talking about it through social media actually bragging to one another how they were going to get SLR cameras, Iphones etc.. Basically this poor guy would have to spend over a months salary to buy all this stuff, thankfully my wife saw all this (the uncle doesn't use social media) and contacted him an told him not to spend a penny on them and then contacted their parents to tell them what greedy little shits their kids were, apparently because they passed some bullshit exam at school they though they deserved to be showered with gifts.


Another example i witnessed was a returning OFW be continually badgered by his layabout son for a pair of $500 (USD) basketball boots.


So the cycle continues.................

First I would like to say that its good to see this site back, I always found it, for the most part, funny and  a good distraction.


I guess I am a bit different than most on this blog and in that my wife and I live abroad, she works and her parents both work and actually have their own money and she doesn't need to send any home, also none of her relatives dare ask for money as my wifes mother warned them that if they did she would cut off the tap to them (she makes the most and is easily the most financially literate) but sadly whilst her mother is quite good with money the rest of her family are to put it mildly, blithering retards, on the subject. So lets dive in then...


1. LET'S GO ON HOLIDAY !!!!


Filipinos love nothing more than a good holiday, that way they hang out at the mall, sit on their cellphones in a whole different place ! And maybe even blag a free feed.


However the problem is they never have any money to do so or they have enough to get there but nothing to spend (forgetting that not everything is as cheap as the philippines). A recent case in point, my wifes brother went back to the philippines (he lives near us abroad) and visited his family then brougt them back for a two month holiday, only they had another addition, my wifes cousin/nephew a 17 y.o who is lazy as fuck, now this kids dad hasn't worked in over a year (was working in canada) but they still, for some reason decided he could go for a 2 month holiday, now he arrives and it turns out he has NO MONEY, not a fuckin peso, his parents have not given him a dime, thinking that the relatives will pay for food for their lazy fuck son. So he bounces between our place and my brother in-laws place as neither my wife nor him want this lazy little sod. When he's with us he just sits on the couch using our wifi to post on FB or watch youtube, he is overseas for the first time in his life and he spends it sitting inside looking at his cellphone, I note that he has brand new air jordans, apparently he saved up his allowances (yes 17 and still gets an allowance) to buy them......hmmmmmmm could have used that money for your holiday, so we have to feed him and he complains to my wife that he needs rice, fuckin hell you must be joking son !!

Eventually my brother in law feels some pity for him and gives him the equivelant of 1200 pesos so he can go outside and walk around, but what does he do, spend 80% of it on a new cap, that he saw in a shop. The rest of the time he just sat inside waiting for someone to take him outside (and buy him some food).

Now he has a sister in the same country (about 3 hours drive away) now she should be the one to take him, my wife and brother agree that he has to go especially if all he is going to do is sit around and do nothing, so his sister comes down and she is as equally useless as him so she visits but announces she can't take him and she doesn't have enough room, this doesn't go down well so the following week he manages to blag a free ride on the bus to near where his sister lives and he (and her) blag the obligatory free feed and free hotel stay from my brother in-law, this time the sister is convinced to take him back. He still has 6 weeks of his holiday left and yes still no money !!!


2. SMART PHONES AND BASKETBALL SHOES


My wifes parents still live in her childhood home, it is the typical small one bedroom place all jammed in together around a basketball court, her parents can easily afford better but like the community and prefer to save their money and l've well within there means. However the rest of the area do not have this luxury and are on low incomes, a few of them have OFW relatives, but mostly in low level positions. But yet when I go there all I see are smart phones (Apples, Samsungs) and air jordan basketball boots, why you ask ? When the OFW money comes in it goes out quickly and those boxes arrive jammed with smart phones and gadgets that the OFW spends a months salary on so his family can have best, yet no money gets saved/invested anything and next year, another box appears.


These are only two topics, I could talk all day on this and I will continue. But I must say that the filipinos would have to be the biggest money morons I have ver seen, I had more financial nous when I was 10 !


What say you ?

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