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Friday, September 15, 1972

The Philippine Constitution Association (PHILCONSA), a private group monitoring the activities of the Con-Con, was meeting at the Sulo Hotel. When I arrived at about 8:25 a.m., Gary Teves was already speaking on the economic provisions in the new Constitution prepared by the different committees of which Gary is the chief technician.

A lengthy discussion was going on, generated by the critical comments of PHILCONSA official Ruben Roxas, that the provisions were quite detailed and would not be enforceable. Besides, he said, policy continuously changes and it would probably be better to leave the economic policies to Congress.

There was also a little speech by Ambassador Juan Arreglado at which he criticized my statement about the need for self-reliant development, with emphasis initially on labor-intensive small industries, utilizing indigenous materials, so as to forestall the need for capital intensity and to plug the hemorrhage of foreign exchange for production components. Small is beautiful? Arreglado did not think so. He suggested instead the promotion of big industries which are capital-intensive, such as those found in the United States. But where will we get the capital? But then why debate with Arreglado?