Time and again, according to schedule and plan, we have local and national elections. These are envisioned to be a pillar of our democratic society. They are perceived as the precious opportunity for the citizens—rich and poor, professionals and laborers, the powerful and the hapless—to freely choose the people who will man their government and lead them to the future.
Time and again, also according to routine and expectation, we watch and listen to local and national political candidates who all solemnly make basically and substantially the same promises: to infallibly bring our country to prosperity. To selflessly serve the people with dedication. To continuously govern with unquestionable sincerity, integrity and honesty.
Time and again, likewise according to the saying that hope springs eternal, we eagerly await for good things to happen, for wonderful times to come. Optimism is in the air. Good news really abound. Happy days are proverbially seen as just around the corner.
But time and again too, sad to say repeatedly and routinely: the elections could have changed the persons in government but the plight of the people governed. The innumerable promises simply laid there and they died there. The good things did not come. The happy days did not happen.
Not that there were absolutely no changes at all, one elections after another. But the changes have been always either for a little better or for a much bigger worst. But the better was always far less than expected, much less than promised. And the worst was taken more with resignation than surprise.
This is not pessimism but fact. This is not fatalism but truth. This is not a guess but history.
There must be something wrong either in the system or in the people. And there must be something that can be done to improve the system and to renew the people.
10 March 2000