Philippine Election: A Choice between the Devil
and the Deep Blue Sea
by Apolinario Villalobos
The murky Philippine politics is such that the Filipinos are always left with a choice between the proverbial devil and the deep blue sea…both bad enough, at the onset of election. The worse that can happen is inaction or abstinence on the part of the voters, which robs them, on the other hand, of their right to exercise their ultimate authority as citizens.
The eager candidates who are currently holding sensitive positions in the government who already want to earn mileage of exposure at the earliest allowable time, shamelessly use these to their advantage. The opposing parties on the other hand, move heaven and earth to demolish their reputation by bringing into light past graft cases or build new cases against them, based on allegation of cohorts. As a result, the valuable time of these officials are charged to the taxpayers while seemingly endless self-serving investigations go on, although, they reveal helpful information, at the same time. What is glaring is that both the investigated and the investigators have shares of guilt.
Part of the dirty tactic during election that has become a traditional practice is vote buying which made running for any position very expensive as those interested need to have millions to spare during the campaign period. Those lucky enough to get favorable results in this venture, try hard to recover whatever they have spent and even more. This gave rise to the popular adage that the easiest way to get rich is for one to enter politics. This could be true because those who joined the race and got blessed with overwhelming votes become rich even after just a couple of years in their position.
My statements may be general, although I know that there are still some in the political arena, very few who try hard to maintain a clean image. These are those who do not survive the rigorous occupation eventually, hence, bow out after just one term…I have talked to them.