THE great Mao Tse Tung had a most uncanny, albeit funny while being ingenious and apt, description of revolution. It is more lucid and graphic when put in Tagalog: “Ang rebolusyon ay parang utot. Hindi maiiwasang sumingaw at umalingasaw. (A revolution is like foul air through the anus. It cannot be stopped and it stinks.)”
Quite in contrast to how the farting Duterte’s touted victory in the just-concluded presidential elections nauseatingly smells, yesterday’s Manila Times editorial is a welcome breather. It recognizes that there has been grave anomaly in the conduct of those elections and makes no bone about putting serious question on its results.
The editorial quotes at length a statement on the issue sent by computer expert Rene Azurin, a convenor of the election watchdog AES WATCH. The statement, according to the editorial, is “exactly about the danger that we suspected.”
A substantial portion of the statement reads:
“Everyone totally misses the point about a Smartmatic person changing a line in the canvassing program to replace a ‘?’ character into an ‘ñ’. The essential point in this matter is not that the change was ‘minor’; the crucial issue is that a Smartmatic technician had access to the server program while the canvassing was going on. This is a serious security breach and should not have been allowed. If that technician can change one character, he can change other things as well.
“Indeed, one can speculate that the so-called ‘minor change’ might have been deliberately intended to act as a trigger to launch a sleeping worm or Trojan horse already embedded in the system and programmed to make major changes, including the altering of vote counts. (Author’s note: So that’s why the sudden skyrocketing of the Duterte vote count to a very early 5-million lead!) Thus, the Smartmatic spokesman could claim with a straight face that the script change he made was ‘minor’, while neglecting to say that this trivial change was the trigger for another script that would make major outcome-altering changes.”
The editorial avers: “We are not experts. But the first thing that came to our mind was the suspicion that if Smartmatic’s men can make unauthorized alterations—while the canvassing is in progress—without anyone getting angry and calling for blood and retribution, then they can also make alterations on the results without anyone noticing and protesting!”
To this, in all due respect, I take exception. I did say in my column Saturday last week, titled “Why I am not giving up on Jojo Binay”: “One time in the past, I titled one article of mine in this paper this way: ‘Hitting Binay is a beating I can’t take without a counterpunch…” This time around I’d say, “Putting Binay down in the count is a cheat I can’t take without raising hell.”
As early as 8 p.m. Monday, just three hours past the stop of balloting, Duterte was reflected in the quick count by PPCRV covered on Channel 2 as garnering 11 million already out of 60 percent of votes cast or 32 million. I made a quick count of my own and discovered to my utter shock that 11 million is 35 percent of 32 million votes counted so far. Why shock? Because 35 percent is exactly the rating Duterte got in the surveys immediately preceding the election week. What did this depict? A perfect matching of extrapolated public preference of presidential candidates a week before the election and the vote count purported to be real on the day of the election.
35 percent survey rating, 35 percent vote-getting performance.
As though Filipino voters were no different from clones acting according to pre-programmed orders. You just don’t do that to humans, 51 percent of whom had fixed their minds in February on who to vote for: 29 percent for Jojo Binay, 24 percent for Grace Llamanzares, 24 percent for Duterte, and 19 percent for Roxas. Up for grabs only after that period were the 7 percent in March, 9 percent in April, 14 percent on May 1 to 9 and, finally, 13 percent on election day.
Against the above statistics, it is highly inconceivable that Jojo Binay would drop to fourth place, especially considering that in the last Presidential Debate at the University of Pangasinan, in Dagupan, the Vice President’s performance was above park; Duterte at par with clowns, to wit:
“I will not involve the people in a war with China. So I will go to Scarborough by myself and fight the Chinese there and let me be just the one killed.” Now that he is passing himself around as the President of the land, let’s see how his touted single-handed skirmish with the Chinese materializes. You don’t need the powers of the President to do that, do you?
For my early questioning of the improbability of the result of the PPCRV quick count, I got the flak of Duterte cultist followers, mostly vulgar and insane, with one apparently level-headed rebuttal practically lecturing me on software technology. By practice, I let go of criticisms of my work at just the way they are, believing in the dictum: “I may not agree with what you say but I will defend your right to say it.” Besides, I have no IT proficiency to put up with his too technical talk, the reason why I had my son shift from Mass Communication to Computer Science, sort of passing the buck for my learning of software knack. I entertained the idea of passing the buck as well to Kit Tatad, who on the eve of the election touched lengthily on the subject as he called for the rejection of the election for being farcical, precisely on account of the software component of the electoral process.
One reaction that got me nursing high blood was the threat: “Isang bala ka lang.” How I wish I could take that sonnamagan down memory lane, to that May Day event in 1971 when upon the arrival of Marcos at Congress, ratatat from M16 fired by hidden snipers sent the crowd of revolutionary workers scampering in all directions, mostly into the Intramuros sunken gardens, where fearless female union leader Liza Balando got blasted by an armalite bullet smack on the chest, shattering her heart; a comrade thrown to the grass with a cracked shoulder, with me diving for safety but catching a bullet just the same skimming on the skin of my shoulder at the back. And to that smart Duterteist’s challenge: “Isang bala ka lang.” I’d say, “Takot ang bala sa akin.” Put it on and prove just what kind of fiendish president you are poised to put in place. As for me, I have nothing to lose but my age. I have the future of my darling apo to gain.
To The Manila Times, many thanks for, though unwittingly perhaps, taking up my stand against the corruption of the people’s true will in the last presidential elections. You have put the issue in the correct perspective: “This now puts the entire canvassing process in serious doubt. The integrity of the automated results can now be reasonably questioned.”