BLP COLUMN: Stressful year looms
From all reports at the time of writing, it would appear that Barbadians at large celebrated the long Christmas weekend free of major negative incidents that would have dampened the national mood. For this we as a country should be very grateful, with the hope that the same will prevail over the New Year festivities and even be sustained throughout the coming year.
For despite all of the frenzied commercial hype, the mood of the public was characterized by a sense of strong restraint not experienced in our nation for more than 20 years as people seemingly resolved to have a good time while acknowledging the reality that the state of the nation was one of uncertainty that was not only prolonged but had no end in sight.
Nowhere has the pervasive mood of social despondency been more acute than with the public’s attitude shaped by the chronically anaemic state of the economy, thereby further exploding the Democratic Labour Party’s (DLP) misleading myth that a “society” stands in isolation from and is therefore not seriously influenced by the “economy”.
So that the nation of Barbados badly needed the extended Christmas break to decrease, if not completely eliminate, the national level of stress that had been steadily and unrelentingly rising as it became increasingly clear that the David Thompson-Freundel Stuart administrations were not only incapable of implementing meaningful relief measures, but also did not have within it at any level of leadership that could convince the public that better days were indeed coming.
For inspirational leadership certainly does not prove itself in the form of a “Duty Free Day” or any other gimmick designed to generate a limited “spurt” to be reflected in a “feel good” factor severely restricted in duration and intensity and cynically intended to mask the underlying and entrenched economic problems in the glitz of the superficial materialism that has become such a major symbol of present day Yuletide celebrations.
Barbadians have consequently come to reject the endless stream of superficial preaching that passes for enlightened and enlightening leadership from the DLP. When people elect a government they have in the past come to expect and largely get policies and programmes that advance their condition and the general interests of the nation.
But under the DLP, what we have been getting are lecturings about behaviour, a role that properly belongs to the home and other socializing institutions, and definitely not patronizing and sanctimonious politicians of limited abilities.
Disillusioned by four-years of DLP broken promises, contradictions, inconsistencies, reversals and betrayals, Barbadians have every reason not to expect sudden and dramatic performances by the Government that would cause them to not still feel gloomy about Barbados’ prospects in the New Year. On the basis of its pathetic failure on the cost of living alone, the DLP deserves little from the electorate.
They do so assured that they have turned for relief to a talented Barbados Labour Party (BLP) team led by highly trained and experienced economics practitioner Owen Arthur, with his unmatched record of nearly 14 years of unbroken economic progress and prosperity. The public can be confident about the pledge by a new BLP government to “Rescue, Rebuild and Restore” Barbados. We did it more than once before and can and will do it again.