The price of liberty is eternal vigilance. Out in the remote and inaccessible corners of this country, people know this verity almost by instinct. It is in the suburbs that folk seem to be bedazzled and lost, all at the same time…
In the semi-rural, and the hinterland, the people seem to have a nose for these things. They have often favored performance over loose talk, and found it hard to support under-achievers.
But, what’s happening in this country today beggars the imagination, and the desperate anti-Mahinda lunge of the counter revolutionaries is mind bogglingly mean spirited.
Just this week the JVP went to Court and to the Human Rights Commission asking for Mahinda Rajapaksa’s security to be ‘cannibalized.’
They say that he obtains an unfair advantage over the others with his security detail, but the mean spiritedness translates into something like this:
We want him dead.
There can be no other explanation for the desire to prune down the security of a man who is an obvious target for a myriad enemies, not the least of whom are those who consider him the main cause of the debacle and the ignominious end of the LTTE, and its leader Prabhakaran at the banks of the Nandikadal.
They want Mahinda dead, but what they want more dearly is Mahinda out of the campaign. A former President who is an obvious security target, they wager, would be unable to muster the private security to weather the threat of the disaffected Tamil racists.
The equation is simple. The best way to get Mahinda out of the way is to make him a sitting duck, they figure.
At least so they would like to think, and for sheer cynical desperation this sort of loser politics is hilarious and lamentable in turns.
Today, the JVP is riding the inconsiderable coattail of the fluke UNP. What it means is that being a fringe party which sees for itself no future with a strong leader such as Mahinda Rajapaksa in power, they have no alternative but to back the UNP which is blatantly the party of the landed gentry and their spoilt progeny.
What a pathetic end to the political fortunes of those such as Champika Ranawaka, and Anura Kumara Dissanayake.
The former is something else, but to talk about the latter, it is interesting to see why some of the Colombo elite rave over the JVP launch party, or whatever tamasha they had before the election campaign began proper this week.
The JVP has set itself up as the so-called ‘conscience of the nation’ and for starters as far as campaign slogans go this is to cave into their sworn enemy Wimal Weerawansa, whose slogan has prompted their current style of labeling.
Weerawansa began his campaign during the last election season by calling himself, no doubt with a touch of hubris, ‘the talisman of the nation,’ or Jathiye Panchayudaya.
The JVP after five years has to piggy back on that take, by calling themselves the ‘nation’s conscience’ instead.
Other than appealing to a small set of hopelessly wooly-headed and gullible romantics, that slogan wouldn’t have any resonance with anyone who sees that the JVP is more than any other cynical force in the country’s spotlight today, totally bereft of a conscience.
Who with a conscience would want the security of the man with an obvious threat on his life removed?
But the move is more cynical than it may perhaps appear.
The UNP and the JVP along with the JHU, and such like rabble, theorize that Mahinda Rajapaksa should get out of the way as he has had his day, and it is rather impolite to be in power for too long.
They figure it’s as if Mahinda is the boy who ate all the cake at the birthday party, leaving nothing for his whining siblings.
Vast swathes of this country’s population have other ideas about this.
They see strong leadership in Mr. Rajapaksa, and they see also the lack of mean spiritedness that to the contrary animates the political lives of the anti-Mahinda set and their supporters.
It is getting ugly out there. These people would do anything to get MR out of the way, and this time they have pulled all the stops, and if the birthday party metaphor is to be used, they look like the kids who are throwing all the toys out of the pram.
Ditto all their supporters. Any sense of common decency has been left at the door, and you could say that the very true colors of the Colombo led UNP lumpen is being seen now in flagrant excess.
But this lumpen exists in the chic coffee shops, twittering on Twitter and facing-off on Facebook. Those pretensions do not make them any less lumpen though, as they act as if they are the dregs of society, which most of the time they are indeed.
They are the dregs because they are rootless, would follow any fad that screams they are Westernized, and are on permanent pout mode.
What is good governance or Yahapalanaya all about? It is mostly disaffection boiling over as a desire to scream and be heard, because the Yahapalana set are so alienated from society, having followed the herd instinct and all but disappeared into the crowd. (There is one better word for it — frustration.)
It was Erik Fromm if I’m not mistaken who wrote that the only way most humans seek to ameliorate their pain of belonging to an automated society, going robot like about their business, is to belong to the herd.
This is why there is not one shred of original thought among those who think they are tearing Mahinda Rajapaksa apart with their shrill invective and their revolting put-downs such as ‘baiiya.’
They seek comfort in ‘belonging’ to one resentful set, however lachrymose and ugly they look in their churlish whining against whom they see as the rural strongman that represents the polar opposite of their own slavish Western outlook.
This time, the herd has acquired a couple of bulls with long horns, and oodles of ‘I’m not ok’ attitude to lead their angry pack in Messrs. Anura Kumara Dissanayake, and Tilvin Silva.