Post-mortems can be messy affairs. They require incisions and discoveries of slimy and grimy truths that cause the stomach to churn.
But they are necessary in accurately identifying what happened in those final minutes or hours before the last breath.
It is with this in mind that we would rather the Jamaica Labour Party (JLP) be obsessed with playing its role as the Opposition and preserving its status as stakeholder in the protection of this country's democracy.
But Opposition Leader Andrew Holness and his Labourites are currently cross-eyed. On the one hand, the JLP is watching the politics surrounding Jamaica's socio-economic doldrums, including a bailout from the International Monetary Fund and austere prior actions that must be taken to rescue the economy from free fall.
And on the other hand, the party is still smarting from heavy electoral defeats that pushed it to the margins of governance.
First, some context.
The JLP's demise at the December 29, 2011 polls was due, in part, to a deficit of trust as then Prime Minister Bruce Golding impaled himself on the stake he had in defending the Government's stance of not quickly extraditing Christopher 'Dudus' Coke, who later confessed to gun and drug crimes in the United States. Mr Holness was parachuted in as captain of the ship as it foundered.
This newspaper hopes that the Standing Committee, the JLP's most powerful caucus outside of the annual conference, would insist that Mr Holness move apace with the full public disclosure of the findings and recommendations laid out in the post-election report, which was compiled by its sagacious triune council, Professor Bernard Headley, Senator Kamina Johnson-Smith and consultant Marcia Forbes.
Any attempt to sooth bruised egos and paper over cracks would be a fatal and illusionary escapade.
The party, driven by Mr Holness, must come to terms with the backsiding it received in the general election of 2011 which gave the now-governing side power to steamroll any decision requiring a simple or two-thirds majority in the House of Representatives. In the Upper House, the Government can wangle a decision if it manages to sway one improbably brave opposition senator to go with the tide.
One-sidedness not good for Ja
The electoral walloping got worse in the March 2012 local government polls, with the PNP winning 11 of the 12 parish councils and claiming the Kingston and St Andrew Corporation as well as the Portmore municipality. The Trelawny council was deadlocked.
This level of one-sidedness can be bad for national politics. A Labour Party which does not stand as a viable alternative is not good for the Labour Party. Worse, it's not good for Jamaica.
Mr Holness, who benefited from the acquiescence of rivals in a last-gasp bid to save the damaged party, must learn from the mistakes and recalibrate the party's fortunes. Full acceptance, and publication, of the post-election report will be painful but should be a big step on the long journey to restoration.
After the apportioning of blame, the youthful Mr Holness should assert his leadership; sweep out the obstructionist relics; and promote a brand of politics that is productive. A credible Opposition is imperative.
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