November 9, 2008

“Observing the hypocrites” … in Guyana

Posted in Economics, Guyana, Politics, USA politics tagged , , , , , , , , , , , at 7:24 pm by randallbutisingh


By: Freddie Kissoon- Kaieteur News – Guyana… November 9, 2008.

“…observing the hypocrites as they would mingle with the good people we meet”…. Bob Marley

That line is taken from Bob Marley’s evergreen hit, “No woman no cry.” Its context is about the plight of poor people in despair about the dilemma of poverty, reflecting on life’s pessimism in the ghetto. They would be joined by those who come to serenade with them only to massage their own egos and pretend they are friends of the poor thus the line in the caption.

I thought of Marley instantly when I read about the outpourings for Barack Obama from those in power in Guyana. Yet these people turn their backs everyday on the lofty ideals of this great gentleman. They mistreat their citizens. Discriminate against them. Reduce them to mendicancy. And treat justice and freedom with utmost contempt.

What does Obama mean to these people in the seat of power? Does he mean anything to them? Three weeks ago, a man who spent thirty-five (yes, not thirteen but thirty-five) years cleaning and clearing out the faeces of Georgetown citizens was fired on the allegation of one accused.

I spent two weeks trying to get justice for this man. I spoke to almost all the principal actors at the place he worked but human compassion has left this land and man’s inhumanity to his/her fellow citizens has taken over. I failed to get those that fired him to see that he has given all his life in service to Guyana. These are the new owners of Guyana. Armed to the teeth with authoritarian power, they brush aside any call for sympathy.repressive governme

They are incapable of empathy. They are incapable of understanding the world the ordinary people with ordinary salaries live in. In the end, this man and his family had to face the world that Marley sang about in his extraordinary ballad.

There is a part in Marley’s song that few in the poor classes would find encouraging. Marley wrote; “In this bright future, you can forget your past, so dry your tears I say.”

I have received complaints of excruciating wrong-doings by high state actors, some of which would make fascist dictators look like gentlemen helping old ladies across a busy intersection.

If I were to investigate human rights violations by state authorities in Guyana, this column would end up being more boring than the pages of the only newspaper in Cuba, “Granma.” All I would write about is what the Government of Guyana is doing to poor people or the justice that is denied to the poor and powerless.

Last week, I invited Colin Smith (editor of the Catholic Stanard) to a secret meeting with a source that gave me confidential information on a high level deception that is going on that would make perhaps all the supporters of the ruling party march onto Freedom House. It was not that I believed my source. I did my checking and I verified what I was told.

Yet these are the people that praise the President-elect of the United States, Barack Obama. Mr. Obama made a campaign promise.

He told his supporters that he never took a dime from Washington lobbyists. He wants nothing to do with them and none of them would find a job in his administration. This is a politician that even if he fails in his endeavours, he would have sincerely tried to change the way power is used by ruling politicians that excludes a hearing for the working classes and the middle classes that work hard for their country but ended up without jobs and homes.

In Guyana, not only lobbyists (if we have such types) but scoundrels, vagabonds, exploiters, manipulators and fraudsters are feasted at the table of power. They delight in discriminating against their fellow citizens. They enjoy wielding unlimited authority. They savour their ownership of the country, they relish their untouchable status. Such people would not last a second at the control of Barack Obama.

Will we ever understand how the mind works? Here in Guyana, we have receded into valleys of hopelessness. We have returned to unmodern times. We have journeyed back to olden days when monarchial power was absolute. Here in Guyana, big stick methods rule the waves and no redemptive sign appears on the horizon. Yet the creators of this Kafkaesque nihilism could speak glowingly of the phenomenon that is Barack Obama.

How could a mind that denies its subjects a piece of the cake speak of the greatness of Barack Obama? Barack Obama stands for inclusiveness. He stood against a mighty machine and defended the classes he has embraced.

They are the classes without wealth. In Guyana, such classes are gloomy about their chances of survival. Guyana needs a Barack Obama.


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