A leader persuades others by superiority of his reasoning, ability to express his ideas, character traits and principles, not by baiting the latter with material considerations. A leader is selfless, whereas, a politician is selfish. A leader submits to the discretion of his followers to obtain their votes. A politician uses money, undue influence, false promises and even guns and goons to obtain votes. A leader does what he says. A politician does what he wants for himself, which are not what he promised. A leader is guided by values, while a politician is guided by selfish interests. A leader works for the welfare of his followers. A politician works for his own interest first, then his party and his party followers last. For those who are critical and do not belong to his party, sorry "na lang."
A leader is democratic. He listens to his followers. A politician is sometimes undemocratic. He hears but does not listen. At times, he uses force and influence on media to silence and discredit his critics or followers.
Many politicians, particularly our own breed of politicians, can hardly be considered leaders in real sense because they do not fall squarely within the definition of a leader. In essence, the term "political leader" has become a self-contradictory term because of the way our politicians have been performing their functions.
On the other hand, I believe that the recent political activities in our nation cannot be characterized as political development. The word "development" means going forward, getting better, to metamorphose or to mature. What we are seeing are not healthy political development but a worsening political realities. The big fish are eating the small fishes. The small so-called leaders are being stripped of their dignity with mere invitations to a sumptuous free lunch and perhaps other insignificant concession in exchange for their principles.
Given the above realities obtaining under our present political atmosphere, is there really something to hope for by our less fortunate masses? According to Lucio Tan, it will take a 100 years for us to see meaningful change. Even some of us in the diaspora and those back home are being sucked into a vicious cycle where there is no positive sign for change or escape from the quagmire of cultural, behavioural and psychological meltdown.
This message was originally posted in an internet forum years ago by an OFW during the last election season. May he, and all of us Filipinos, find good substancial changes in our politicians and their politics these days that may alter our negative views of our politicians.
Many Are Called, But Few Will Be Chosen
Every one that hath forsaken houses, or brethren, or sisters, or father, or mother, or wife, or children, or lands, for my name's sake, shall receive an hundredfold, and shall inherit everlasting life. But many that are first shall be last; and the last shall be first.
For the kingdom of heaven is like unto a man that is an householder, which went out early in the morning to hire labourers into his vineyard. And when he had agreed with the labourers for a penny a day, he sent them into his vineyard. And he went out about the third hour, and saw others standing idle in the marketplace, and said unto them; "Go ye also into the vineyard, and whatsoever is right I will give you." And they went their way.
Again he went out about the sixth and ninth hour, and did likewise. And about the eleventh hour he went out, and found others standing idle, and saith unto them, Why stand ye here all the day idle? They say unto him, "Because no man hath hired us." He saith unto them, "Go ye also into the vineyard; and whatsoever is right, that shall ye receive."
So when even was come, the lord of the vineyard saith unto his steward, "Call the labourers, and give them their hire, beginning from the last unto the first."
And when they came that were hired about the eleventh hour, they received every man a penny.
But when the first came, they supposed that they should have received more; and they likewise received every man a penny. And when they had received it, they murmured against the goodman of the house, saying, "These last have wrought but one hour, and thou hast made them equal unto us, which have borne the burden and heat of the day."
But he answered one of them, and said, "Friend, I do thee no wrong: didst not thou agree with me for a penny? Take that thine is, and go thy way: I will give unto this last, even as unto thee. Is it not lawful for me to do what I will with mine own? Is thine eye evil, because I am good?"
So the last shall be first, and the first last: for many be called, but few chosen.
So let them choose whom they will serve. But as for you and your house, you must serve the Lord only, who is your God. (Joshua 24:15)
Genuine humility is a quiet witness that convicts arrogance. A true leader is humble.