It’s sad to say that we’re once again giving the impression that in the Philippines no one loses an election. Everyone is cheated out of winning. The news was abuzz yesterday about the surfacing of one whistle blower saying that the 2010 elections were rigged and that the he was part of the group of people that was rigging the elections.
This tall tale sounds like pure bitterness hatched by people who lost in the elections. Let me express my opinions as to why I don’t think that this particular whistle blower is telling the truth as well as my opinion that at the very least the national elections were not rigged.
The automated election is a whole different monster than the elections of past. To cheat in the automated elections you actually have to do it very high up in the structure or at the very grass roots. Let me explain this. In order to cheat the elections you need to get someone high up from Smartmatic to give you access to the source code, the mechanics of the elections, the machines, etc.. That would mean bribing somebody way up. Even then there is also a check and balance from Comelec so you’d have to bribe those people as well. Granted that Comelec doesn’t have the most sterling of reputations it doesn’t change the fact that you should be bribing the high level officers. Even after doing so it’s one thing to have access to those information and it’s another to have the capability to do something about it.
You can posses the source code but given the complexity of programming, not everyone can do it. You need highly specialized people to alter and write a new set of program to cheat for you. There are not a lot of people that can do that. After that you need to be able to place that program back to the machines in order to cheat. The notion that was said by the whistle blower that they intercepted signals and sent their own is hogwash. First, it’s not that simple. Sure you can jam a signal but intercepting it and sending your own is quite difficult. The transmission is encrypted and by my understanding it’s 128 bit key and that’s not an easy thing to crack. It’s not impossible but I don’t the likes of the whistle blower can do it.
As my friend “Carlo”:http://www.nargalzius.com pointed out, if you want to hack the automated elections you’d probably have to do it through the server level and not the PCOS machines themselves. This would be a more plausible route. Less manpower and easier to keep a secret. Again for this to be possible you’d need to buy people at the higher levels and not the level the purported whistle blower said.
The other way to cheat the elections and a more plausible way of doing so is buy actually buying the votes. There was a news report that said people would take voters aside and pay them actually not to vote. Thus allowing only the supporters of a particular candidate to vote therefore assuring that the candidate won. Now this would be more possible and doable. Unfortunately this only lends itself well to local elections and not national. The sheer amount of votes you need to buy make it impossible to do it via this method for the national elections.
But my biggest argument as to why I think that the national elections were not rigged is the plain and simple fact that the results are consistent. The tally of the votes are consistent with the surveys and exit polls conducted by SWS, Pulse Asia, ABS-CBN, GMA, PPCRV and other organizations. The only difference would be the degree of margin of victory. In all the surveys the result pretty much said that Aquino would win, Erap would be second, Villar third and so on and so forth.
Now people are saying that there was a conspiracy among all of these organizations to put Aquino as President. C’mon people. You can cheat, buy, steal some of the time but you can’t do it all of the time and with everyone. A conspiracy among all these organizations means you need to buy ABS, GMA, SWS, Pulse Asia, PPCRV, etc. That’s not an easy task nor a cheap one.
But what pisses me off the most is that by implying the above statement it means that you’re questioning the integrity of the various people behind these organizations. Especially the journalists who work their asses off to give you the news. It means that Princeton educated and CNN trained Maria Resa was part of this conspiracy as well. She being the head of the news deptartment means that she must have knowledge that they’re reporting erronoeus data. Seriosuly? It means that the reporters, researchers and other people working in the media department were also bought off? Coz I have not heard a single accusation from them. At least nothing of this magnitude.
The main reason why all of this is coming out now is the plain and simple fact that our politicians can’t stand to lose. For all of Villar’s flaws I at least admired him for admitting defeat. Until he changes his stand on that I will respect him. To a certain extend Gibo also. As for the rest stop whinning, take it like a man, so to speak and move on.
Don’t get me started on congress wanting to investigate poll fraud. A lot of them lost in the elections and now they want to investigate why? That’s not fair you can’t have a participant of the election investigate a contest he just participated in. That’s biased. Have an independent body do so.
I sincerely believe that if any cheating was done during the past election it was probably done at the local level and not at the way that is being mentioned. I believe there was still coercion, vote buying and bullying in the provinces or the remote areas of the country but at the national level I believe that the results are fair and valid. Believe me some of the results I wish were not true.
Some question why Bong Revilla and Jinggoy Estrada topped the elections. There’s a plain and simple explanation for this. People vote for who they know. Especially since most of our populations is undeducated or under educated, they don’t choose based on qualifications. They vote because they know this person and to a certain extend they feel that they can relate to them.
Let me tell you a story. I’ve been going to PGH for the past 4 years. I know this orderly who helps me whenever I’m there. I asked him who he was voting for and why. He mentioned Erap, Jinggoy and Bong. I asked how come? He said despite what people say the three of those have actually made a difference to the poor patients in PGH. During Erap’s time a CT Scan machine broke. This machine was being used by charity patients. Within a short time frame a new one was sent by Erap. Bong and Jinggoy also have letters of guarantee on standby in PGH to guarantee assistance for patients who can’t afford to pay. To those people it actually makes a difference.
Do I want the three of them in office? No. I didn’t vote for them. why? Because I believe their approach to the problems of society is wrong. However that’s my opinion and some people think otherwise. I just need to respect that.
People vote for who they know. That’s the same reason Noynoy is posied to win. It was his name, the legacy that his parents left that pushed him towards victory. It was unfortunate for other candidates that circumstances happened that propeled Aquino on his way to victory. I believe it was just really his destiny to win. That’s what the other candidates are finding hard to grasp. I understand their point of view. Some have prepared a long time for the elections and here comes a man who didn’t want it in the first place and he ends up as the possible victor. It’s hard to accept. But…. they have to.
To Aquino and his team’s credit they were able to sustain the momentum by not screwing up the campaign too much. Well except with the Mar faux paux who is all but certain to lose the VP race. I asked people about why they chose to vote for Binay and not Mar, the consensous was they didn’t want to see Korina in power. Sad but true. Mar is a good guy in my opinion. He would make a good VP. Alas it was not meant to be.
So to sum this up. Do I think that the allegations of that whistle blower is true? No! Was there cheating? Maybe but in isolated cases at the local level. For the most part was the elections clean? Yes I think so. The results are consistent with the surveys and exit polls.
To those who say that SWS, Pulse Asia, PPCRV, ABS, GMA were all conspiring to rig the elections, shame on you. You’re maligning the intergrity of people who work tirelessly to give you information that you want. You must remember after all is said and done these people go back to normal lives. SWS and Pulse Asia will do survey work for companies and other entities, if they risk their reputation they risk their livelihood and their standing not only here but internationally. What to these people have to gain by rigging the elections?