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June-March 2001


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WITHOUT REMORSE by Michael Poblete

Dingle's Lost Treasure

Solution to our ever-rising oil prices that makes our ever rising cost of living, had been taken away for 50 million-dollars?

Unknown truth to many, a national nightmare for few who knows. Those few knew how much was lost. It was just something that could replace bitter priced gasoline with something we use everyday when we take a bath.

What really was lost? It is not gold but more precious than gold. Something more powerful than gold. Man can live without gold but cannot without this. When tapped of its enormous power the future of the world starts here.

There is a saying that history repeats itself. This is true in the case of Agapito Flores, inventor of the famous fluorescent light bulb. It was during the time of late President Quezon when Agapito carried this strange seemingly magical white light emitting tube to the president. The inventor, who was a simple repairman and owns a boongalo shop, needs support for his invention. The government, which needs flagship projects for the use of the masses and for national recognition did not want to get involved. Then it turned that General Electric (GE) bought and patented the invention. The rest, was no-history. None for Agapito Flores, for he was just an anonymous inventor, Thomas Edison, having greater popularity is often accredited for the invention.

Situation of the present parallels with that of the past. The United States alone had been spending millions for developing a technology to make use of water as a fuel, for the last twenty years. Fuel, the by-product of which is simply water vapor, nothing else.

Dingle's quest for government support started more than twenty years ago, during the time of President Marcos. Since that time, the country's debt was doubling and booming. Government projects greatly depended on continuous inflow of borrowed green backs. Then came the conditions. Conditions that this indebted country should not produce anything that will threaten foreign dominion of the market. And Dingle's invention collided with this grave condition.

Dingle attempted to seek help of the Department of Science and Technology (DOST). Officials examined his device that converts water into hydrogen and oxygen. He even has a car running on water, steam coming out of the exhaust tube. Some of the witnesses to the demonstrations affirmed that even pineapple juice can be used as fuel in Dingle's car, as long as water is present. But the DOST immediately dismissed the Dingle's invention without any plausible explanations, but offered to support the other aspects of the invention, sadly, only those that will not replace gasoline.

Twenty years of waiting for government support exhausted Dingle's patience. He had been constantly turning down multimillion-dollar offers from foreign companies. He wanted to help lift the burden of overpriced goods due to overpriced oil in his country. He had had enough.

Dingle just recently, had accepted 50 million-dollar offer of a Taiwanese firm to market his revolutionary technology. Dingle pledged that the money will be used to make his dream come true, to help his countrymen, even without the help of a "pro-poor" government.

History has turned its leaf once again. Will there be another treasure facing the same fate?

Look for IMF and WB.

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