La Mesa de la Libertad: Profile of a voter
THE coffee “aficionados” at La Mesa de la Libertad are considered to be ‘doctorates’ in street politics. Their political speculation can make or unmake the candidates. They always believe that in the long run, only the voters can make officials for the country or for the local government units.
Their coffee shop experience made them surgeons of voters who will vote for candidates. We have voters belonging to the “inteligencia.” They cannot be bought and cannot be dictated by appeal to reason or emotion. They are the ‘literate’ who cannot be persuaded by political promises.
There is also the “sniper group of voters.” They snipe the candidates with their snooperscope to identify the candidates’ capacity to spend. If they are certain of their profile, they will present their ghost battalion as bait for the candidates. If the candidates fall under the trap, that could simply mean series of expense until election time.
The “promise hookers” are like gay butterflies. They capitalize on their commitment and dedication to any candidate who can make the best offer. If the candidate wins this butterfly will become an adviser, a consultant, an executive assistant, or will be provided a co-terminus position.
There are voters who are not just voters. They are ‘political investors’ who are willing to spend their money as a political investment for a candidate. There is always a catch. If the candidate for mayor or governor wins, they will have a share in the “politics of economy.” They could be sending their own favored contractors or they may want to partake in the intelligence fund, or special Education Fund, or may ask a favor for the approval of an investment.
Another group belongs to the “wheel of fortune.” For them, a candidate should be a Sta. Claus. They want their vote to be exchanged with crisp cash. They don’t call it vote buying. They call it the “generosity” of the candidate. That generosity could cost a candidate more than five hundred pesos per head. Nobody wants to be serious but it could only happen.
There is this group known as “canine devotees.”
They still belong to the semi-feudal world. They don’t care for the candidates. They only care for the wish of the landowners who have their own candidates… friends or relatives. On Election Day the workers who go out and vote are provided a regular daily wage. The “hacendero” generosity still works.
The “hunter voters” are dangerous. Their names are in the list of all candidates. For them, the election is for one day only. It could be an opportunity for them to make money. Whoever wins tomorrow, they don’t care. The candidates would not remember them.
Election is fun. Voting is funny. Jokers are just around. Many of us still believe that the right of suffrage is sacred. Let us not waste our vote. There are always candidates who are committed to serve us. Let us include them in our list. We pray for them.*