Tue | Dec 12, 2017

JaRistotle’s Jottings | Just Think …

Published:Thursday | September 28, 2017 | 12:00 AM

I am quite sure many of us have been subjected to the lamentations of our elders, or have ourselves lamented - 'Oh but for the good old days when...' I can personally attest to the goodness of the old days growing up in the country, when the whole village was integral to the raising of us children. Truth is, nowadays business is completely different. But just think, wouldn't it be wonderful ...

If politicians had stuck to being for the people and what was best for the country instead of being so blatantly hungry for power and the trappings that come with being in power. Theirs has not been the 'what can I do for my country' attitude, but rather 'what can I get out of my country?' Just think of where we could be as a country had it not been for the corruption and the graft that have turned off so many potential investors, manufacturing start-ups, exporters, hoteliers and the likes thereof. Word is that even Walt Disney had a keen interest in Jamaica, but backed off and went to Orlando. Oh well, just think ...

If members of the business sector were prepared to not just reject but also expose corruption and offer consumers fair options rather than engaging in political cronyism and seeking to curry favours at our expense. Just think if our captains of industry steered a moral course instead of cruising with the devil. Just think ...

If politicians had not pawned off guns to criminals and created garrison communities as a means of securing votes, taking the old British colonial strategy of divide and rule to a new low. We could be living in relative peace and harmony, living wherever we wanted and raising our families without fear: love thy neighbour business. Just think ...

If politicians had not set out to frighten and marginalise the middle class, but had averted the mass exodus of brain power in the 1970s and beyond. Just think if they had not decimated the civil service to suit themselves and their lackeys and that we instead had a solid foundation of balance, able to stave off the rampage of blundering and thieving politicians. Just think of the dignity of obtaining work based on merit and worth rather than having to sell our souls. Just think ...

 

INVEST IN EDUCATION

 

Just think about where we would be today if successive governments had made the appropriate investment in education, starting with teachers. Teaching used to be an honourable profession, and teachers were admired and revered. Today, they are poorly paid and regularly abused, and we wonder where our future as a country lies? Just think ...

If we had an educated and emotionally intelligent populace, who could reason out issues and come to gainful solutions instead of jumping to ill-tempered and often ill-fated outcomes. Just think, if we were better equipped mentally and socially to reject partisan politics and antisocial behaviour of any and all forms. Just think on the amount of lives that would have been spared over the last 40-50 years - 20,000 or more perhaps? Just think ...

If we had an educated and rational populace who could think beyond party lines and vote for the best representative, as against the lumpen proletariat who are the deciding factor in our national politics and governance decisions. Just think if we had a guaranteed system where lame, lazy, useless and corrupt officials, whether elected or appointed, could be readily impeached and removed from office, and a populace who would readily support such actions. Just think, if we were able to hold public officials accountable and issue them short pants instead of them short-changing us. Just think ...

Just think if we had a police force that was devoid of licky-licky cops who sold their souls for cash or kind, where criminals knew their time was limited. Just think of a country where wannabe dons would always be just that - wannabes - and where the only gang in town was the chain gang. Just think if crime really was a dead end and did not pay. Just think ...

Just think of Jamaica, land we love, where 'Out of Many, One People' really mattered and 'One Love' prevailed. We would be unstoppable as a people and as a country.

Just think, just think.