Posted by: luvin | September 25, 2009

How to Select?

This coming 2010 presidential election, two of my kids will be voting for the first time.  A first time is always a momentuous event, infact it is a life changer event. More than the celebration of manhood or ladyhood, which we normally celebrate through a western copied practice of debut, voting signals their entry into the world of adulthood. They will not just be debutante, but votante. A first civic and legal action where they have the real opportunity to take the responsibility of deciding for their own future.

Naturally, as a father, I would like to give the correct guidance on whom to vote. But in the spirit of democracy, I can only guide them. They have the freedom to choose, however, this freedom is limited and constrained by their lack of proper knowledge on how to choose properly. Freedom could not be properly exercise when the person is not freed from the chain of ignorance.

The chain of ignorance has so many rings that our collective effort must break  to set us free. One of those ring is the falsehood, the halftruths that PR and advertising practineers resort to to sell their candidates.  The complexity of the modern day campaign techniques is beyond the grasp of even the most learned individual. Many will be drowned by the spin thrown left and right.  Campaign spin doctors operate like a large organization ganging up on the hapless little folks, and the we will have little chance but to swallow what is being thrust into our throat.

I cannot imagine the fisherman who have spent most of his life in the sea, who spends most of his days trying to feed his family, sifting through  the  maze that spin doctors have created.  I will not even give a fair chance to my kid, who will be graduating with a communication degree from the University of the Philippines, of identifying the truth from the half-truths. Not even my second kid whose IQ is 133 could protect himself from being influenced by the campaign.

We have a system that is stacked against the selection of the best or the right leaders.  We adapted the popular democracy model, where filipinos irregardless of educational attainment or their lack of it, will choose who is the best candidate. If Philippines is a large corporation, the selection of the CEO will be something like this. The chairman of the board, the division manager, the corporate strategist, the brightest researcher, the janitor, the guard, the factory worker, all have thesame right to vote. One vote each. The voice below will naturally win over. But will they be able to select the best candidate? Of course not.

Another bias of ours  that does not help is our inclination towards the perceived winner. I know Estrada is a proven failure, but he is still so popular that he might still win. I know Teodoro is intellectually and educationally qualified, but he is not so popular that he may never catch up. I know Noynoy is just a shadow of his parents, but the message of him being the messiah is strongly accepted, and he may win. 

Given the many enfluencers, what is the simplier method, the applicable method of choosing the best candidate? 

My simplistic approach would be; If you have a company (a business enterprise), would you choose that person (candidate) to be the manager? Would you hire him/her?


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