Is Ge­orge­town worth sav­ing?

Stabroek News Sunday - - REGIONAL NEWS -

ques­tion sharply why the com­mer­cial pow­ers that clog the drains and streets and bank­ing sys­tem ex­hib­ited (through prox­ies) so many anx­i­eties over park­ing me­ters.

In short, these and the rest left un­men­tioned, boil down to this: no taxes col­lected, no park­ing fees wel­comed, no real rev­enue stream means noth­ing fixed, garbage firms owed, and on and on ad nau­seum. I see this as a con­flu­ence of crises: a cri­sis of con­fi­dence and at the core is a cri­sis of fun­da­men­tals: hon­esty and in­tegrity, char­ac­ter and cred­i­bil­ity. For­get the fancy phrases. The per­cep­tion is that there is a set of ir­re­deemable vagabonds in­fest­ing City Hall. Here is my po­si­tion: why en­gage in aid­ing and abet­ting by vot­ing?

There is a com­pany of swindlers and ex­tor­tion­ists, col­lec­tors and con­fi­dence men that has to be re­moved. Pe­riod. Top, bot­tom, and mid­dle. Start over clean and I will vote. That ven­er­a­ble in­sti­tu­tion named Alan Fenty wrote about sav­ing the city in a re­cent SN col­umn. My first re­ac­tion was: is this town worth sav­ing? I think it would be more con­struc­tive to pull the plug, pro­nounce the twitch­ing corpse dead, and put ev­ery­one out of the deep, thick swamp of mis­ery.

Yes, I know: just not done; not like that; things don’t work that way. Then sorry: I will not vote for an oc­ca­sional hand­out here and a morsel of pity there, as though I am a wel­fare case seek­ing favours. This stance is costly. Call it the Amer­i­can Way. No won­der the great mass of the great Guyanese di­as­pora looks down on this place, and will have noth­ing to do with it. Too many losers sup­port­ing more losers to per­pet­u­ate an en­trenched los­ing way of life. To an­swer Mr Fenty, I say build a new city that in­volves mov­ing minds from the me­dieval bog to the mod­ern. Let the city fend for it­self, as it has been forced to do in its ag­o­nis­ing death spi­ral.

Next, I hear the new­est lu­nacy of elec­toral change in the works for 2020 with LGE func­tion­ing as an early lead­ing in­di­ca­tor. Who gives a damn about LGE any­way? If LGE is this per­ti­nent, then op­tometrists must be do­ing mas­sive Christ­mas busi­ness: they have suc­ceeded in in­tro­duc­ing colour blind­ness across the board. That is more ma­jor than the oil finds. Any­how, I said it since around early 2016: 2020 is set­tled, sealed, and signed. The Op­po­si­tion PPP has al­ready spir­i­tu­ally con­ceded (loud noises aside); as it knows its goose is cooked. The for­eign­ers (the A peo­ple) may be sym­pa­thetic to the horse (party), but they do not like the jockey (guess who?). So, if any­one thinks that the out­siders will chance leav­ing lo­cal oil in the hands of those lo­cal

peo­ple, then I re­gret be­ing com­pelled to burst that fool­ish bub­ble and put an end to this non­sense. As said be­fore, ev­ery elec­tion in this coun­try has been de­ter­mined by for­eign­ers, and that was when oil was ab­sent. So, what about now? Or as Matt Munro pleaded down the years, “Why not now?” This is sim­ply good horse sense. Oil sense, too.

Last, I do agree that Guyanese vot­ers are an­gry, un­happy, and dis­tressed; only a few are over qual­ity of life and gov­er­nance. The ma­jor­ity are an­gry about re­stric­tions on the con­sti­tu­tional right to help them­selves at tax­payer’s ex­pense; about the shake­downs that have (some­what) dried up; and about gov­ern­ment fail­ures (pro­lif­er­at­ing). But an­gry means nei­ther stupid nor reck­less nor clue­less. Stay­ing away from LGE is not cross­ing the floor; and sit­ting on hands does not mean com­mit­ting mass eth­nic sui­cide in the big bash of 2020. While I have al­ways liked shared gov­er­nance, the gov­ern­ment is al­ready sad­dled with enough roguery of its own; it does not need the bag­gage that comes with the op­po­si­tion.

Dis­turbingly, what all of this means for this place is more of the same ru­n­away law­less­ness and brig­andage that are now vi­tal to its very sur­vival mech­a­nism.

Yours faith­fully, GHK Lall

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Guyana

© PressReader. All rights reserved.