Cacophonous election bells to choose people for governance in a democracy–of the people by the people and for the people–and so on, have begun to ring again. And it is at a time when the government is in shaky defence facing local and international flak.
People are tired of elections, and no wonder. They are clearly drowning in economic doldrums while being at the receiving end of blows that have killed and continue to kill the spirit (what little that’s left) of the freedom loving citizens in this country. Anyone with an ounce of grey matter would not dispute this predicament of the masses striving to deal with their lot– certainly not a result of their own doing. The main reason–perhaps the only reason for this scenario is the mediocre to third-rate quality of Lankan politicians and their scandalous styles in handling affairs of the country. Fortunately for this crowd of misfits, voters with no brains in their skulls but some other strange filler keep voting them in to ‘represent’ them. But, it’s indisputable that the progress of any institution beginning from people’s homes through places of work to governments leans entirely on proper leadership, further qualified as ‘optimum levels of leadership’ that brings about confidence to people.
Just a memory
Those kinds of leadership provided by old brigades, remain only as memories. The painful reality is that they have been gradually replaced by all kinds of characters even village idiots recognise as dimwitted scallywags. What has happened to the gentry who have what it takes to take the reins? While a mere handful hangs on despondently hoping for brighter skies, the rest have hung their boots, not wishing to have any truck with new breeds of politicos who have invaded their domain. Invaded? Yes, by the hundreds. While in the early days when politicos were associated only with Parliament, today there are dozens of kralls of white elephants purportedly ‘in the service of the people’. But in reality even school-going brats know they are just parasitic worms living off the people.
Who is to blame for this situation? It’s not the people but political parties that look for power through any means to achieve it. And power is secured by selecting candidates–of whatever kind–who are seen as winners in a ‘preference’ voting system that sets brother against brother in the same army.
‘I also want to be a politicca’
“I say, Ooty, it’s selection time again for our governors,” meeoowwed Tommo a pussycat employed as a vermin controller at the Wallside Restaurant and Bar. Ooty, an owl was his pal and working partner.
“Thuhoot,” responded Ooty, “I have heard governors talking about it at Wallside. But unlike those days the talk is less and subdued: no use burning petrol it seems. You know why? Elections are for treasure hunting, empire building politiccas; not for governors who end with bugger-all.”
After a tiring and sweaty day chasing vermin, the owl and the pussycat were enjoying their free beers courtesy of the Wallside management.
After a sip of beer, pussy said, “ Purshsh, what do you expect when government ranks are full of characters resembling armed pirates in galleons plundering each and everything they can lay their hands on? Our governors are most unfortunate creatures aren’t they? They have been landed with skull and cross-bone cut throats with no brains and hearts.”
“Thuhooot! Hold it. These pirates didn’t just walk into parliament and other places to manage things did they?”
“ No, but political parties gave them nominations. There’s no chance for such characters going solo. Only a party of whatever colour can give them canvassing oomph and financial support to win. And if the party is to be rewarded for the outgoings it has to field gutter snipes who have winning cards up their sleeves–any cards giving open licences to garbees to play dirty cards to win after blasting away competition in the preferential games. Nowadays political parties aim is to support winners to get power; not with plans of deliverance for the country’s good. So, political parties are responsible for the comic politics in the country today.”
Beauties among beasts
“Whooom, whoom. Is that the reason parties are fielding actresses and beauty queens to contest the up coming provincial elections?”
“Meeoowwyep (yep) Why not? When considering the hordes of kudu karayas , kasippu karayas, bar karayas, casino and race karayas , pimp and tart karayas, hira-karayas, maruwas, hora business karayas, chandiyas, commis karayas and similar types running the country, what’s wrong in adding good-looking dames to the party? Consider it as new ingredients to the common karaya factor that win votes. I bet any guy would prefer voting for Geethanjalee instead of Sarath from Panagiyawatta.”
“Who is Geethanjalie?”
“She is an actress; potential for the Unlimitedly Funded Party. There are also others like Judith a fan of Un-unitedly Notorious Party, Sonali with interest in the Bells and Ringtone Party and Kishani of the Always Red Party and other gals–all beauties–some with political experience on the side while others are as fresh as uncut roses–politically I mean.”
“Tooootooo” wailed the owl. “But, Tommo, what use are they? Beauty and brains don’t go together. Your new ingredients are showing off their feeble minds already. When asked about their views and hopes in politics, one says she is hoping to use her beauty to develop the country. She must be having something special. Another says she is as fast as Cotton Hall…”
“Who the hell is Cotton Hall?”
“Whooom. Cotton Hall was a fast mare ridden by many jockeys to thundering victories. She hopes to use her talent to speed-up the country’s progress. Another sponsored by a politicca already in action- packed drama says she is totally against drugs, porn, casinos, bribery and corruption and child slavery and would begin a world wide campaign to nail them down. Another fashion model promises to send only men to Saudi and women to Latvia for employment. Among these beauties is a madam who has seen better days romancing on screen. My, my, but hasn’t she has become a loud-mouthed fire brand who thinks she is always right. Another rosy runner is planning to eradicate rabies and encourage research into contagious influenzas. They are all in a Disneyland, Tommo.”
“Okay, so what? Parties don’t care whether their nominees are of sound mind or not. They just want them to win so that they can keep their carnivals going.”
“That maybe so, but today our governors can’t even fill their tummies thrice a day. They have had enough. Hell, things are so bad they have begun to revolt.”
“Purrshsh,” said pussy polishing off his beer. “That won’t worry the government. It is ready with more water canon trucks, tear gas, dud-rounds, live rounds and stun guns to batter down opposition hollering for a change. Don’t you know? The government has its own style of democracy that gives it the freedom to do anything wrong and call it right and survive the aftermath. Clever dicks aren’t they?”
“Tooot. But they are heading for an exam failure anytime now.”