The Chairdestroyer ooops wrecker Mac Esposo asks a similar question in the Philippine Star on why the Left never seized power. He enumerates the long term effects of Spanish colonization and Christianization of the islands and the people and the American branding of our nationalists as "bandoleros" as factors why Filipinos never accepted the Left.
The Left has been in the electoral political arena for several years now. They are now moving out of the partylist sphere into the wider field by being guest candidates of the Nationalista Party. With this attempt at coalition building, it shows a bit of pragmatism. But this pragmatism was criticized Left, Center to Right. Why? The Left went to Bed with characters that to put it simply, tried to kill them.
But I dispute Esposo's "damaged culture" argument. Filipinos still go for nationalist types. But they won't go for Communist "Nationalists" for one simple reason. And this reason has been well discussed by National Artist and Ramon Magsaysay awardee,Frankie Sionil-Jose in his essays. The reason is Marxism-Leninism-Maoism is another foreign, imperialistic imposition on the Filipino masses. Also it is viewed as a Chinese imposition. Sionil-Jose argues that there is a real anti-Chinese undercurrent in Filipino rural society.
This is something the Left especially those in Utrecht have no clue about. If they have, then they deny it. And to add to this is the ideological inflexibility of the Left, it makes matter worse.
The Left's guerrillas are also seen as extortionists. This is something Esposo missed out.