A ‘None of the Above’ option should be made available to Filipino voters!

I’m not surprised that supporters of Liberal Party candidates Mar Roxas and Leni Robredo would be quick to feel “vindicated” by the position taken by my colleague Virtual Vigilante (VV) in his article The Choice is Clear: Mar and Leni for 2016. Months of desperately grasping at straws to find an absolute reason to vote for those two really would do one’s head in.

But then what is so “vindicating” about VV’s article? All he says is that Mar and Leni become appealing because they are backdropped by a bunch of morons also are competing for that lucrative seat in Malacanang…

If the alternatives were simply mediocre in comparison to Mar, then I wouldn’t lose sleep over the 2016 presidential elections. The problem is, the alternatives to Mar are downright disastrous and catastrophic (i.e., Duterte and Binay).

If you don't come to democracy, democracy will come to you.

If you don’t come to democracy, democracy will come to you.

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That just means the fantasy of Mar and Leni winning this election very much resonates with the Loser mentality Filipinos apply to any contest they find themselves in — winning because the competition sucks. Indeed, that is a space where Pinoys have become quite comfy — competing on a rigged field where victory is assured.

Now the really sad thing about Mar and Leni is that, all this sad competition notwithstanding, they still are at the bottom of the polls. That just goes to show Filipino voters would still choose vigilantes, thieves, and on-the-job-trainee presidents over “Ivy League” Mar and SOB-story Leni.

There is merit in the idea that a relatively “stellar” candidate should be voted, presumably applying the all-too-familiar “lesser” evil doctrine of choosing Philippine leaders in cases where all the rest suck. I emphasise “relatively” because this is a key word to qualify such a position. It is not an absolute choice. It is a choice by default.

I’d disagree with this approach to choosing the next president if there was an alternative — e.g., a viable “none-of-the-above” vote that, if that option attracts the majority vote, invalidates the presidential election and, as a result, forces the state to declare the election ‘failed’ and invoke some kind of succession procedure to install an interim government (perhaps to be headed by the next elected official in line — the Senate President, say). Sadly there is no such provision in the current system and, as such, we are forced to select that lesser evil.

In VV’s case, it is Mar Roxas and Leni Robredo he’d vote for. Fair enough. I respect that. If we don’t choose someone, then the other monster wins. Such an astoundingly intractable position Filipinos have created for themselves — a system that holds them hostage to the products of their own national-scale dysfunction and mediocrity. Perhaps that is justice in the sense that we sow what we reap as a people. The crop of presidential candidates for 2016 are Filipinos’ punishment for being such a clueless lot!

The only real alternative for one whose stomach turns at the thought of having to choose one amongst a sorry crop of presidentiables is to not vote at all. But is not voting the same as voting “None of the above” if, for argument’s sake, that option is available in the ballot? Not likely. A “None of the above” vote, if it was available, represents a categorical rejection of all candidates. It is an explicit choice. Not voting, however, does not express an explicit electoral choice. In effect, if everyone who does not like any candidate opts not to vote, the resulting low voter turn out only serves to degrade the election.

Providing a “None of the above” option in the presidential ballot in combination with measures put in place to provide for succession in the event this option “wins” an election is a long-overdue solution. Positions next in line to the presidency — the Senate President, and then the House Speaker — are both elected officials and, as such, are viable alternatives. It is high time Filipinos be freed from the prison of having to choose the “lesser evil” every election time.

21 Replies to “A ‘None of the Above’ option should be made available to Filipino voters!”

  1. If “none of the above” is chosen; “Porky Drillon” will become President. Another “Swine” in the Hacienda Luisita Pig Farm.

    I think the best way is to borrow, the French Guillotine used in the French Revolution; and cut all the heads of these thieves, corrupt and incompetent people.

    The “Daan Matuwid” now goes to the “bangin”…

    1. “If “none of the above” is chosen; “Porky Drillon” will become President. Another “Swine” in the Hacienda Luisita Pig Farm.”

      When I was just younger, “Porky Drilon” sounds like a capable politician. He wasn’t that porky then, I guess, or I just don’t know much about politics then. Anyway, good thing about NOTA is that it does not permit “lesser evil”. Those vying for the top position have to possess the qualities of an effective leader else they won’t get voted. It will teach the aspiring leaders to step up to the mark or just stay home and plant kamote (these “retards” should really get out of the way of those who think of this country more than their egotistic and narcissistic self).

    1. Presidents decides and executes decisions. This is a very important part of the governance. If the decision and governance are “palpak”…we have the conditions of our country, as we have now…

  2. It’s none of the above if you only consider the big names. That’s the problem: since Filipinos are focused on personalities rather than performance, they tend to choose only big names, thereby limiting their own choices. So what’s wrong with picking someone like Roy Seneres or even that Intergalactic Ambassador? Or, if it’s handwritten again, what’s stopping you from putting Dick Gordon in the president’s blank? hehe

  3. these so called attack dogs of malacanang should be convicted of treason. they’re leading for the approval of the BBL which is treason a traitors to our motherland.

  4. 6 year term as president needs to be stopped first. The USA made a law to where a president can only be president for a total of 8 years (2 4 year terms). This was done so that the country would never go into despair if the president was bad for the country. The congress is voting between the 2 year periods for a reason. This means the people have the chance to change the direction of the nation basically every 2 years either by congress or presidential elections. Let the people control the nation through voting for people who will make a difference every two years.

  5. Yes, NOTA! Now the question is – Do the Filipinos even know how to choose?

    Say, if our choices are the following

    1. Miriam Santiago
    2. Rodrigo Duterte
    3. Jejomar Binay
    4. Mar Roxas
    5. NOTA – None of the above

    the Yellowtards won’t even choose. They will simply go for Mar. Same with Dutertards and Nognog dependents. You may call me bias but when people tried to look at the past records of governance (competency and the lack of it, corruption and the lack of it) and tried to understand the gist of laid out platform of candidates (that also includes vision and strategies), then they might consider choosing 1, 2 and 5. If they see strict law enforcers, good characters and being a good example to upcoming generation as important, then its 1 and 5 (as Digong has the record of putting law into his own hands and love flaunting his womanizing and cursing habit). They say the problem with Santiago is that she’s ill? What about give an incident where she did not perform her duty because she is ill? Or where she stopped criticizing incompetent government leaders or stupid government action because she felt ill?

    We have “retards” and heavily dependent persons (who will sell even their soul to get support) kasi amongst our voters. But at least if NOTA is there as a choice Pinoys may begin to realize that we’ve been having embarrassing Presidentiables in our list.

    1. Yeah you nailed it. Filipino voters are fixated on personalities rather than ideas. So regardless of how much you debunk — or support — the ideas of the candidates, the die-hard ‘tards will continue to latch on to the bets they’re fixated on.

      It’s the lazy way of participating in a democracy. You let the brand or the personal do the thinking for you rather than formulate an independent personal position on the issues.

      1. Yes. To answer that I would quote Pres. Obama in his SOTU address:

        We have to change the system to reflect our better selves.

        because it’s always the bad side of the Filipinos that are taking the lead (like being bribed, giving favors to padrinos, being late, lying to win approval, neglecting quality to meet promises and schedule) that’s why we get the worst leaders, bad results. Democracy needs leaders and citizens who can think for themselves and be independent of other’s support or assistance, people who think of and apply their best decisions. Not like zombies. (Then the next questions are what are the Filipinos good or better side? Are they even aware that they have it? If not, what will tap the better part of themselves?)

  6. Finally! Benign0 telling it like it is! I rarely post here nowadays, but I’m really tempted to comment on GRP’s election posts 6 years ago and just write “I told you so, Pnoy supporters!” Had they only voted for Gordon at 2010, or Roco before that (1998 & 2004), or even Salonga before that (1992)…

    Who was it that said that we get the government we deserve? The Pinoy voter hasn’t matured one bit.

    1. What I mean here is if we were responsible voters, our country would’ve avoided this point in history; now in spite having many candidates this coming presidential election, probably having no candidates at all is fast becoming a better choice.

      This reminds me of the late Marcelo Fernan’s campaign jingle for vice president..

    2. True. Where we are now is an outcome of a long journey and process involving small contributions of flawed thinking from here and there.

      The colossal failure we see today in the idiotic choices that confront Filipinos in the lead up to the 2016 elections is the snowball that has grown to an immense scale as it rolled down the Philippines’ hill of dysfunctional thinking.

  7. Your Government has waaaaaaaayyyyyyyyy toooo much power over you guys but if something is not OK, its easier to blame the Government.

    – Dump your government, establish Direct Democracy. There is a reason why Switzerland is one of the most wealthiest country in this planet. We do not have any meaningful national resources, nor we have beautiful ocean to attract tons of tourist but we have something that you guys need to consider to implement. We have EDUCATED people sitting in the Parliament and WE, THE PEOPLE, have the power of our own faith and that my friends, we call DIRECT DEMOCRACY. If some of those guys in the Parliament want to change something or introduce a new Law, the people has to vote and approve it before it becomes a law.

    but then this website already has ton of ideas how you can save your country 🙂 Kudos to the bloggers! I really like the way you thinking!

  8. Virtual Vigilante (VV) in his article The Choice is Clear: Mar and Leni for 2016 – ba ika mo? ah ewan, ayoko na ng puro photo-ops, press con at gimmicks. time to get real tough on crime and grimes of the streets of the Philippines. Hindi yung puro kurakot. Yung nga lang dapat isama ni d30 mga pulitiko, mula KB hanggang kongress, senate, supreme court, etc. God Bless the Philippines

  9. Yes, Yes, Yes for None of the Above (NOTA)
    – The Best & Permanent Candidate of the People
    – No need to campaign
    – It can’t be threatened by any Politicians
    – The end of abusive Political Dynasties
    – Either current leaders perform well or suffer by running against the People’s Candidate (NOTA)
    Let us all help create a NOTA Movement.

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