To what end?

The dastardly news came as no big surprise to the citizens of Antigua and Barbuda at home and abroad. Seems, some political knucklehead, acting at the behest of his handlers put his life on the line to disable our broadcast equipment at Mc Nish Mountain this past Sunday. Of course, the outpouring of support as well as the outrage was palpable, and the pathetic effort clearly backfired. The dimwit is probably somewhere, even now, hiding his head under a rock, too ashamed and embarrassed at the blow that he struck against freedom of speech and freedom of expression and a free media.  His betrayal of these sacred principles will forever stain his conscience and sully his name. May our good Lord have mercy on his wretched soul.  We suggest that he return the thirty pieces of silver that he was paid to betray his fellow citizens of Antigua and Barbuda.

Which raises an important question? Why did person or persons unknown see the need to disable our Observer radio transmission? Are we asking the probing questions? Are we being true to our remit to shine the light in the dark corners? Are we being faithful to the solemn charge to keep? Are we making those in officialdom uncomfortable? Is the daily diet of bad news – the moribund economy, the lack of investments, the underperforming ministers in so many ministries (with the exception of one or two) being exposed as empty suits? We are persuaded that that is the truth. Clearly, they inspire no one, and unfortunately, we are stuck with these charlatans until (gasp!) 2023? Help us Lord! Heaven forfend!

Can anyone in his or her right mind contemplate, without a great deal of agita and discomfiture, the next two/three years with more giveaways to the Chinese, more nepotism (family members and their friends making money ‘hand over fist’), more late salaries and pensions, failure to deliver on any blessed promise (see ADOMS, Sunshine Hub), more crumbling sidewalks and roadways, and on and on and on? The litany of failure and mismanagement is quite appalling. Especially since there are so many ‘mouth men’ and ‘women’ in this administration. They can all talk a good show – merely regurgitating a speech that has been written for them for whatever occasion, but they really do not believe a single word that they utter. It is quite sad! They do not even deliver the pathetic speeches with any conviction these days. We have come to a fine pass!

So there they are – going through the motion; faking it! Pretending to care, when in truth and in fact, they are only concerned about their kith and kin, their selfish kind.  Which brings us to the haunting words of Oliver Cromwell, that great English statesman, when he unceremoniously dissolved the British Rump parliament in 1623. Cromwell’s denunciation is apropos today: “It is time for me to put an end to your sitting in this place, which you have dishonoured by your contempt of all virtue and defiled by your practice of every vice. You are a factious crew and enemies to all good government. Ye are a pack of mercenary wretches, and would, like Esau, sell your country for a mess of pottage, and like Judas, betray your God for a few pieces of money . . . You are grown intolerably odious to the whole nation. You were deputed here by the whole nation to get grievances redressed, and you yourselves have become the greatest grievance . . . I command ye therefore, upon the peril of your lives, to depart immediately from this place . . .Go! make haste! In the name of God, go!” Ouch!

Cromwell’s words of disgust were uttered nearly four hundred years ago, and they still ring today. Seems, the more things and the times change, the more they remain the unholy same.