May 2013 Elections: What Went Wrong?

photo credit: 3.bp.blogspot.com

Nancy Binay and her party's campaign material.

The people have spoken and the expected winners of this so-called “democractic” process have triumphed and trampled all their detractors who didn’t want them to win either in pursuit of  some personal interests or to help the nation realize that the system needs changing. The battle on Facebook and other social media networking sites has been futile and complaints about the results of the recently held elections can be seen flooding newsfeeds.

I admit that I already concluded (in one of my previous articles) that the elections in the Philippines is a lost cause while the problem is not just about voting wisely and reminding the people to use their common sense when filling out the ballots. Majority of us think that it’s our duty to elect the right officials who will govern our nation but this is merely scratching the surface of the age old problem of politics and the dysfunctional state apparatus in the Philippines. If we are serious about change, complaining about the stupidity of the masses won’t work because the poor people are ignorant enough to be coerced by the people in power and the ones who have control over the socio-political institutions of the country. What we need is more than reform which means that we need to overhaul the whole system of governance and strive to  affect the status quo. The inclusion of the party-list representatives in the government is one way to fight the system dominated by the landed elite class but this is not enough because it doesn’t provide enough power to influence the system. What we need is a better way of empowering the marginalized and the creation of a strong middle class to affect economic policies and demand for better public goods and services from the government (including better schools for the poor). Ignorance of the masses can only be cured by making them aware of the consequences of their actions. Educating the majority of the people can be a very effective tool but this can only be done once poverty and the growing number of hungry families has been addressed by the people who have the means to help them (not the government because it’s the cause of the problem).

If we are serious about change, we have to do our share and make sure that the masses are not addicted to soap operas and reality TV which makes them only dumber. The big TV stations should be controlled and they should not be allowed to produce shows that make people lazy and delusional. The Lopezes for example are the devil’s advocates because they keep on feeding the masses with TV shows that make people think that the poor people will always end up becoming rich and powerful. This is the destiny of the underdog even if they remain naïve and subjugated because the oppressed always triumphs over the oppressors even by just sitting down and letting things happen on their own. The concerned citizens of the country should go out in public and rally against the obvious attempt of the media to manipulate the truth and subjugate the masses. Ignorance can be considered a crime in a Third-World country like the Philippines but we should try to address the real cause of this so-called epidemic. People who don’t have access to the internet or who can’t read and understand the present condition of the country rely heavily on broadcast media. Almost every home in the country has a TV and this is a good way of disseminating ideologies and propagandas. That’s why the people who have the control over this type of media have the absolute power to influence the masses and coerce their feeble minds.

People like Nancy Binay and Grace Poe will always manage to win the elections because they represent all the things that are rotten in the system. In the end what we need is real sustainable reform which goes beyond voting wisely and “change myself, to change the world” mantra. We have to weed out the bad seeds so that we can finally create a better system free of people pursuing their self-interests over that of the country.

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About InsearchofIthaca

Clouie loves travelling around the world, learning languages and cooking. After finishing his Master's Degree in International Business Economics and Management, he now aspires to follow his one ultimate dream of becoming a writer and an author.
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