Another survey brings bad tidings to Marcos regime

By Beting Laygo Dolor, Editor

MANILA – The spate of bad news continues for the Marcos administration as yet another survey released last week showed that a growing number of Filipinos say their quality of life is declining.

The latest Social Weather Stations (SWS) survey conducted between Sept.28 and Oct 1, this year, showed that 30 percent of respondents said their quality of life got worse compared to a year ago, offsetting the 28 percent who said their quality of life had improved for the same period.

A plurality of 41 percent said their lives were “unchanged.”

To recall, two recent, separate surveys showed red flags for the administration which continues to grapple with high inflation, seen by many as the number one problem plaguing the nation.

Inflation for September, this year, was pegged at 6.1 percent, despite the government putting a price cap on rice prices. The Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA) said food prices for that month were at 9.7 percent compared to a year ago.

With food inflation hovering dangerously close to double digit levels, the government is seen to resort to price caps on other consumer goods besides rice to stave off a potential crisis which could spark a political crisis.

The PSA noted that inflation for the bottom 30 percent of Filipino households was at 6.9 percent in the same month, making the rise in prices having a more drastic effect on the poor.

In one of the recent surveys conducted by the OCTA Research Group, one out of five Filipinos said they believed the country was headed in the wrong direction.

The other poll taken by Meta and Gallup found that the Philippines has one of the highest levels of self-reported loneliness in the world.

The three surveys were all taken during the third quarter of 2023.

Like the previous two polls, the more recent SWS survey showed a downward trend in Filipinos’ perception of the country.

Respondents to the SWS survey who said their quality of life worsened went from 22 percent in July to 30 percent in late September. The results nearly matched the 31 percent who saw their quality of life worsen in the tailend of the Duterte administration, taken in July 2022.

Those who said their quality of life had gotten better went down from 33 percent in July to 28 percent in September, further indicating that the level of dissatisfaction with the Marcos regime is growing.

The SWS survey resulted in a net gainers score of minus 2, representing the rounded off difference of those who said their lives worsened against those who said their lives improved.

The new total sank from the plus 11 in July, and was similar to the minus 2 obtained in June 2022, or the end of the Duterte administration.

It was the first time that the net gainers score dropped to negative territory under the Marcos regime.

The survey had 1,200 respondents nationwide, with a margin of error of plus/minus 2.8 percent.