by GHK Lall
The happenings at that recent commemoration event at Babu John made me sit up and take notice. When I place those developments in Berbice next to the results from the Congress in Essequibo, it becomes clear that the opposition made a terrible miscalculation; in fact, several huge miscalculations for which there will be reckoning.
First, and taking the easy part early, it is widely known that the choice (“election”) for top dog seriously rankles many near and far, and within the party, too. That was ignored and dismissed as negligible in the grand scheme of numbers and the keys it holds for electoral success. This is especially so, when it is coupled to the proven hard charging and the associated headless recklessness. Some did say that the party went along blindly and docilely. I say that it willingly allowed itself to be browbeaten into the dust of submission. More self-inflicted harm is promised.
Second, the steel-pointed rhetoric, now increasingly characteristic and relied upon to galvanize can and will backfire. The fear sowed today will reap the yield of intensifying flight (pending Republican immigration developments notwithstanding), inclusive of both legal and back-track avenues. The opposition through the machinations of a single individual has manufactured political tumult, ethnic unbalancing, and the introduction of what might best be termed a refugee crisis, and all of which could accrue to its political disadvantage. A narrowing demographic realm has just been made narrower. In view of U.S migration statistics (alone) from the past decade, thousands of Guyanese depart annually. Most of them are of a particular political persuasion; thus single-handedly, one man has paved the way for his party to reign over a possible numerical minority in the days to come. Airlines and back-track operators salivate at the prospect of skyrocketing business from the apprehensive. Clearly, it was a treacherous tide that rolled into Essequibo last December. It was taken in a flood of manipulations, intimidations, and misplaced visions. Therein resides the wash of misfortune.
Third, potential foreign investors sift the stoked and shifting tea leaves and conclude: this is the harbinger of instability and an unfavorable climate. Some wonder if it is part of the strategic deliberations, and part of the tactical spearheads unleashed today. Deep pocket savvy outsiders consider whether they can do profitable business here. More importantly, there is the consideration as to if they desire to do any business with this group in general, and that boss man in particular.
Fourth, outsiders on the inside of Guyana (think Kingston) already have grave reservations over the history, practices, and the future of any dealings with that same rambunctious incorrigible party, who drives a runaway bus. It is a bus that ignores every sign erected, every caution posted, and every rule and standard adhered to by the civilized and the thoughtful. The Kingston Trio (two operate out of Port-of-Spain) does not want poisons transported to their locales to devastate their people; they want people from here that are not delivered. They do not look favorably upon the nationwide protection program that sheltered so many miscreants with unclean and unreported funds. The men in the gray flannel suits remember well that raucous captain of conspiracies, and how he stonewalled them at every turn. Now he is looking to make a comeback to the big time. Well, not if the fellows from the East Coast establishment have anything to say about it! How can they not?
Fifth, I believe that those foreign power-brokers might have considered giving the doctor a chance and try. I think Frankie would have been found to be a more acceptable, if not embraceable, stranger in the night. Certainly, there is little room and tolerance anymore for the “my way” man. As the latter goes about salting this already dry bitter land, like the Romans did to Carthage, his party will discover its many miscalculations and go on to regret them all.