FEW PEOPLE take to being outsmarted, outwitted and outgunned – or out-talked. So Mia Mottley’s lamentation that she was charged, convicted and sentenced, true as it might have been, was not a surprise in coming. Mia was brutally done in by her own colleagues for reasons yet unknown – outside the vague admission that the slim majority of them had lost confidence in her leadership. Intriguingly, if George Payne is taken to be one of their voices, the Group Of Five believe Miss Mottley still “has a contribution to make and we hope she continues”. Diminished there is the gravitas of leader woman. The intrepid Mr Payne could be right about one thing though; politics is no Sunday School. Expect no mercy; give none. Miss Mottley alone doesn’t have to take note of that; so does Mr Owen Arthur. Group Of Five spokesman George didn’t mince words when he declared that “this is not about Mr Arthur or Miss Mottley but about our [BLP’s] ability to be successful in the next general election”; and there is the crux of the matter. “We believe,” Mr Payne declared clinically to all and sundry, “that, as it stands at the moment, Owen Arthur is the best person to take us into the next general election whenever it is called.” Owen is instead stoical. For him it is about serving – and doing so the best he can. But serving whom or what? If he is keen to serve the country, may we then expect him to have breakfast meetings (as a former Minister of Finance) with Chris Sinckler and discuss amicably ways of moving Barbados forward and out of the world recession’s grip – an idea mooted not so long ago by Prime Minister David Thompson? Or will there be adversarial Opposition business as usual? If he is serving the party, will he kiss and make up with the elders and assure himself of their blessing and financial support at the next general election? Will he embrace Mia again, recognising that a deputy is essential? If Owen is serving the Opposition parliamentary group, may we assume he has already kissed and made up with George Payne in heady delight, and that George might expect a brand new hat? If Owen is serving himself, as some of his critics claim, is Miss Mottley, as the former Prime Minister has explained, to blame? Said a paternal-looking and straight-faced Mr Arthur to the Press on Monday: “. . . I really, really do wish that Mia Mottley would have led the party to cause the people of Barbados to forget about me.” One is not sure how Mia could have done this, except to have secured a deal with Baldwin Spencer of Antigua and Barbuda to sequester Owen there; never again to let him leave for Barbados. Ironically, Mr Spencer’s goose is cooked, and the Antiguan prime minister will no longer be able to have economic consultations at breakfast with Mr Arthur, as the new Opposition Leader will be concentrating more on matters of state in Barbados again – serving “with all my heart and with all his soul”. You can’t blame Owen for not talking a good game.