Has anyone from Jejomar Binay’s Camp attuned to Facebook? Fired up by the mainstream media since Binay’s early campaign speech on September 18 at the Philippine International Convention Centre (PICC), Binay’s bashers increased every second in the internet ranting details of Binay’s corruptions triggered by the alleged overprice of the Makati Parking Building. The immense impact of these on Binay’s chances as the next President of the Philippines weakens his ambition. Yet, strangely enough, he’s not deploying his “troll” army to stem the tide of the demolition campaign. Apart from the overused response to deflect the issue, seemingly, the Binay camp ignored the social media. The social media are not the power to reckon with… Who are these people of the Social Media, anyway? They are not the D & E Class, which are Binay’s bailiwick.
As of April 2010, according to the present social status of the Philippines, the estimated percentage of the people who belong to D Class, is 49% and E is 39%. That’s a whopping 88% potential voter for Binay. During the 2010 Presidential Election, there were 73% voter turnouts out of the 52 million registered voters. P’Noy got 42% of the votes or 15 million, while Binay had 41%, or 14 million.
If the 88% of the D & E Class were presumed to be in Binay’s pocket, as successive surveys indicate, then the target range of 14 to 15 million votes to clinch the presidency would be easy for Binay. Why the noises of the internet savvy would then distract the Binay camp, when they are only 12% of the minority. They can shout all their rants for all of Binay’s care.
Meanwhile, 88% of the great majority the D & E class are occupied of their day-to-day subsistence. They have no time for political or social issues. While some of them could have access to the internet, they are more interested on celebrity gossips, and on cheap laughs. For them, the internet is a new of wave escapist entertainment. The D & E people are somewhat relieved when calamities occur. Relief goods packaged in politician’s name reached them. At least, they can scrimp one square meal. It had an impact on them. They would remember the politician’s name and their allies, as they have prospects now of where to go to during election time to bum for largesse.
This is what Binay institutionalized:the “EPAL” system. He cultivated this “EPAL” system since he was the Mayor of Makati thru cake distribution to senior citizens on their birthdays. The Binays have staff on the payroll just to do this job. That was the start, and it branched out to other services, which should have been the government jobs, anyway. By using the city’s resources, Binay designed a wise political investment, because for every cake distributed, the name Binay inscribed on the packages or on the cards. So, if any, of the Binay’s names is a candidate, it has an instant name recall impact. That was probably one of the Binay’s secrets in building his fiefdom in Makati.
Now, he replicates the same system throughout the country using the Vice President’s Office resources this time. From the bag designs of the relief goods, to the bag contents, up to the vehicle used for distribution, his name are all over the place, amplifying “Bigay Ni Binay ‘to”. Just recently, Binay re-emphasized his EPAL system by distributing T-Shirts to the victims of Typhoon Mario in Cagayan.
So Binay has the right to get smug and snub the power of the social media. They are only 12% of the vote. If that is the case, one may ask, are the Filipinos ready for a leader perpetuating the EPAL system as a rich breeding ground for unabated corruption? Not until the office of Ombudsman found a probable cause to elevate Binay’s Plunder charge to the Sandigan Bayan. Or if someone with a stroke of destiny emerge as a viable candidate on the 11th hour that would capture the dreams of the great majority of the Filipino people.