BLOOD SANDS OF CALUYA big time tourism vs marginal peasants

Big Time Tourism vs Marginal Peasants
eastwind journals 102
By Bernie Lopez


This is a sequel to the previous article After Yolanda, a Bigger Storm – Ayala, which focuses on the planned takeover of Sicogon Island by a Godzilla, Ayala Land Inc., in a staggering P10 billion mega-tourism project that would dislocate about half of its marginal farmers and fishermen. Now we focus on two more Godzillas, Consunji and Filestate in Caluya Island. Whereas, the massive dislocation of Sicogon residents is potential, that of Caluya residents is actual.Read the previous article on Ayala
Sibolo and Caluya and other neighboring islands very near Boracay are the targets of big time tourism and coal mining expansion. Sibolo is a target because its sands mimic those of Boracay, snow-white and talcum-powder fine. Caluya is the target of Semirara Mining of the Consunji Group for its ‘expanion area’. Ironically, tourism and mining are oil-and-water.


Ironically, the seaweed farms are right in front of the very pristine beaches the Godzillas are drooling over. They cannot just be resettled because seaweed farms have to be near-shore and near their homes, and extremely sensitive to pollution. There are no known feasible resettlement sites. The seaweed farmers would rather die than move, but the Godzillas are intent on moving in. If you move the farms, you have to move the homes, a massive costly undertaking. Tourism and seaweeds are oil-and-water. This is the David and Godzilla story, an immovable object against an irresistible force that would end up in blood.


As in Sicogon, they promise thousands of jobs. If you place side by side the gain of temporary cash-economy-led minimum-wage non-skilled jobs for a thousand in one generation, to that of sustainable susbsistence-economy-led livelihood for tens of thousands in many generations to come, THE COMPARISON IS ABSURD. In this way, big time tourism is anti-people. It gives development to the rich and impoverishes the poor. Ironically, the government supports these anti-people initiatives for tax revenue purposes. They serve themselves rather than the people.


In Sibolo, there has been rapid land acquisition by Filestate at prices hungry marginals could not resist. But they later regretted it when the money vanished in the blink of an eye. Half have been bought, but the other half will not budge and would rather die than move. The reaction of Filestate was to fence and deny access. Lately, the buying spree has waned with Filestate rumored to be in a financial slump and looking for a Korean partner. But their security guards are in place. If Filipino Godzillas are too small, they turn to foreign Godzillas as partner, bigger and more vicious. They let Filipinos do the dirty work and simply give the funds.


In Caluya, there has been violent demolitions, bulldozing of farmlands, human barricades, arrests of protestors, harassments, and militarization. The court ordered the demolition of 84 homes based on questionable legal documents, but they demolished 104 by mistake. Orchestrating the takeover of Barangay Imba shorelands is Caluya Mayor Genevieve Lim, wife of a Consunji who is an executive at Semirara Mining. Here is a Youtube video documentary on the BLOOD SANDS OF CALUYA.


A prayer-song for seaweed farmers in distress
to turn to the Lord for help against all odds
King David’s famous thanksgiving song
for divine rescue from a vastly superior foe,
from insurmountable crisis and unbearable pain


i love you Lord my strength
my rock my fortress my deliverer my God my refuge
my shield my saving horn my stronghold
praise be to You Who has delivered me from my enemies
death was all around me, torrential floods inundating me
the noose of Sehol tightening
the snares of death awaited me in ambush
in my distress i cried out to the Lord
and from His celestial abode He heard my plea
the earth trembled, cracking the foundations of mountains
His wrath ignited, smoke billowing from His breath
kindling coals into flame
He then parted the heavens
descending with a dark cloud under His feet
flying atop cherubs, borne by the wings of the wind
the surrounding darkness veiled His majesty
a canopy of violent thunder proclaimed His coming
clouds and hail and lightning were all around Him
the Lord thundered from the heavens
His voice echoing, His arrows and lightning bolts flew
dispersing my enemy
the sea floor surfaced
the world’s foundation was laid bare
as the roar of the Lord, His breath like a storm
He reached down from the skies and cradled me
He drew me out of the deep waters
and rescued me from my mighty foes
too strong for my sword
they attacked on a day of distress
but the Lord came to my aid and set me free
He rescued me because He loves me


Psalm 18:1-20


in You o Lord i take refuge
i trust in You, You are my God
my destiny is in Your hands
rescue me from the clutches
of my enemies and persecutors
look with kindness upon me Your servant
in Your unfaltering love save me
take courage and be strong
all you who hope in the Lord
sa Iyo o Diyos ako kumukubli
lubos and tiwala ko sa Iyo
dahil Ikaw ang aking Panginoon
ang aking tadhana ay nasa Iyong mga kamay
iligtas mo ako sa kamay
ng aking mga kaaway at mang-aapi
basbasan Mo ako, ang iyong tagapaglingkod
nang Iyong kabaitan
sa Iyong walang-alinlangang pagmamahal
idulot Mo sa akin ang kaligtasan


lahat kayong umaasa sa Diyos
maging matapang at malakas 
Psalm 31:2/14-16/24


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