(This column was first published in the Friday, January 27, 1995 issue of Amandala.)
A third party with Westminister…no way…
“…Let the light of Your divine wisdom direct their plans and endeavors so that with Your help, we may attain our just objectives…”
The failure of the political parties to fulfill their promises to the people, the replacement of their campaign manifesto with excesses and incompetencies, bordering on stupidities upon assumption of power, has resulted in a loss of faith and trust by the people, as can be inferred by their decreasing participation in the recent elections, both local and national. Cynical and disenchanted with the present political “leaders of all the spectrum, the silent majority believes that a third party is the solution. This is a vain hope and a futile wish with the Westminister system. Let us examine a little.
What happened in Belize happens throughout the Third World member countries of the British Commonwealth (synonym for the British Empire). Having been subjected to the methodical erasure of our mind and intellect by the Master for so long, we have accepted gratefully and docilely the Constitution he wrote for us. He knows that the cadre of elites he has programmed in his mind set cannot but continue to exhibit the same exploitation of, and contempt for, the masses as he did.
The surrogate leader is unaware that he is psychologically incapable of conceptualizing any original paradigm for governance. Not knowing the substance of the imposed model, he settles for the escape of obsolete rituals, empty honors and brassy medals.
Even as the Master in his own country constantly debates and formulates new laws to adjust to the ever changing conditions of his society; even as he follows his “principles,” he seems to have no problem in changing them when they no longer suit him. He has come to understand that his Constitution is an “organic.” On the other hand, the surrogate has accepted the “given” – thus paralyzed, all he does is to play musical chairs with the concepts therein; result: chaos and anarchy. To rectify the mess he resorts to a “reactionism.” “It is the wish of the Prime Minister”. It is sticking the tar baby.
“…With Your guidance, may all our endeavors tend to peace, social justice, liberty, national happiness, the increase of industry, sobriety and useful knowledge…”
Any system of government that allows major decisions, be they financial, political or social, without public debate, that conducts secret negotiations of far-reaching consequences affecting the well-being of its citizenry without their being able to examine the working papers, is a system moribund. Any system that does not allow dissent, threatens and intimidates, that is so insecure that it does not tolerate the idea that sometimes the options of the “outs” may be superior to those of its “ins,” is a system clapping with one hand. To gloat on the self-evident truth that “the minority has its say, but the majority has its way,” is to factor out conscience, and without conscience there can be no self-respect, and without self-respect there can be no morality, and without morality there can only be corruption. Result: a dialectic of lies and deception, a recipe for ruin. (In Belize a not so subtle wrinkle is added to stifle dissent – all elected servants in one form or another become members of the Cabinet – backbenchers in the Constitution, not in the legislative forum.) This is the reality of the Westminister system as it is practiced in the former colonies.
As for those who wish for a third party, hoping that it would do better, that its conduct (in power) would mirror its belief (campaign manifesto), you must understand that it too will become corrupt. It must become corrupt because the present Westminster system, elitist in nature, is inherently corrupt. Solution: change it to provide scales of balance. It may give us a fighting chance to survive the 21st century.
“… I think, therefore I am…Let us create our own souls, and in this creation discover ourselves in the Godhead…”