Jamaicans, running scared and running out of time

“We have a crime problem that’s the second highest in the world and so we need a strong, decisive national security strategy,” said [Jamaica’s prime minister, Bruce] Golding. This quote from a news paper got me wondering what has the “driver” been doing all the time or has he just woken up and is ready to drive because this is what every Jamaican all the way into the Diaspora knows for a long time.

These strong and decisive speeches ending in themselves are what the population has been accustomed to for decades while the criminals in their paradise do the “gully creeper” (latest dance) going about their business as usual extending their grip as the useless middle class chatocracy deepens. Just read the columns in the Sunday and daily newspapers and now listen to Mr Golding and you will understand and may comment “heard this before, didn’t work before.”

The suggestions range from hang them: that’s great but you must catch them charge them and find them guilty. Others say lock them up indefinitely: we face the same problem – they do not know how to do the catching, and cannot tell fish from fowl, so they now want to resort to an intellectually bankrupt idea dubbed preventative detention. They may as well say indefinite detention or state of emergency the same bankrupt ideas that  help to orchestrate crime instead of solving it. Other ideas aimed at crime reduction is detaining persons driving without drivers licenses – you may not catch any criminal this way as they will as usual be well prepared with many drivers licenses one on the ready for each occasion.

My advice to the government and those in operations is, do less talking, walk the walk and get the job done. Jamaica is full of strong decisive talk which turns out to be  “empty barrels making  noise”.

I am convinced that what we have done in Jamaica for decades is to nurture and iconize a group of lazy minded political leadership that spring not from the bowels of society nor the upper classes but from the poor intellectual middle class. It is this class of political leadership that has been responsible for our national affairs for most of those years since independence that (the PNP’s) Dr Peter Phillips partially blames for much of the nations progressive degeneration. These persons include, Norman Manley, Alexander Bustamante, Michael Manley, Edward Seaga, P.J. Patterson, Portia Simpson-Miller, Bruce Golding and now based on recent activities and utterances Brother Peter wants to be among that group.

Alexander Bustamante, Edward Seaga and Portia Simpson Miller are not exactly from that middle class. If you examine the stewardship of past leadership you find that that the most highly educated tend to be among the worst performers. The mistake Portia made is that she is trying to compete as part of that middle class or was drafted, hampered and confused by them while they captured the government; now in the soon to come PNP leadership race she may well pay dearly for that mistake as the same class of intellectuals will continue to blame her solidly for the party’s demise.

Jamaica needs more than fancy and sweet sounding speeches that rarely translates into strong and decisive actions. Quoting from one of our newspaper editorials “transformational movement of big, visionary ideas for the broad development of Jamaica.” That is what this country needs, not a group of sweet talking chatocrats exclusively huddled together in a political party machine.

The big question is, can we find people to lead this transformation among the same group of failures? If not where should we look? One thing is certain; we are tired of empty barrels making noise and every Jamaican is hoping and praying that Mr Golding can make a difference, he will drive fast, carefully and change course because Jamaicans are running scared and running out of time.

Michael Spence
Liguanea P.O, Box 630
Kingston 6

About Mark Lee

Editor, author and writer with career spanning print, radio, television and new media.

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