Eyewitness: Fulminations…of labour

The content originally appeared on: INews Guyana

As expected, your Eyewitness read with bemusement the opening salvo on blaming the abysmal state of the trade union movement on everything but themselves, the leaders. Reminds yours truly of his kid blaming the living room table for “bumping into him” and making him spill his ice cream cone!! But take, for instance, the separate marches by the two “umbrella” bodies yesterday. Do they connect the sparsely attended events to their own refusal to be constructive in their duties to get better salaries and working conditions for them??

One particular trade union leader (TUL) keeps harping ad nauseum (till you feel like throwing up!! Hence “nausea”!!) about the government ignoring Article 13 of the constitution which says “The principal objective of the political system of the State is to establish an inclusionary democracy by providing increasing opportunities for the participation of citizens, and their organisations in the management and decision-making processes of the State, with particular emphasis on those areas of decision-making that directly affect their well-being.”

While this is all well and good, the fella refuses to say that this article’s in Chap 2 of the constitution and all of them (from 9 to 39) are merely aspirational and not enforceable in any court of law!! In fact Art 39 explicitly declares in its heading: “This Chapter (2) is not enforceable unless legislation enacted for that purpose”!!

The point of the matter is the Constitution has all sorts of Articles that demand all sorts of things – but it’s a political matter as to whether they can be enforced. Take the very FIRST Article in the constitution – it states that the “state is in transition from capitalism to socialism”. Did the TUL ever wonder why those die-hard socialist politicians who’re still there in the PPP and PNC didn’t take their governments to court for not operating according to socialist principles?? Even though both the PPP and PNC pursuing a flagrant capitalist course??

Anyhow, what these whiners are doing is demanding THEY call the shots on the government’s development program. Your Eyewitness wonders whether they’ve forgotten (or they’re “playing stupid”) on the distinction between “government” and “civil society”. Civil Society gets the opportunity to go to the polls every five years to elect the government – which has to declare what they’ll be doing if they get into office. It’s found in their “Manifesto”!! Sure, between elections they can make their views known – its a free country, ain’t it?? But the way this fella is jumping up and down and calling his “troops” out, its clear that he can’t wait till the next elections.
Hope his membership remembers what happened to those who followed the Pied Piper!!

…for anarchy

But really folks…Running a country can’t work with what the TUL demands, can it?? Soon we’d have every Tom, Dick or Harriett demanding THEIR priorities get implemented – or else!! But HOLD IT!! Isn’t this what’s going on right now?? Like the demand that we leave our eleven BILLION barrels of oil (and counting!!) under the Ocean for the “good of the planet”!! Meanwhile our poor have been left right where they are at the bottom of the ladder since the beginning of time (well, since the beginning of our history!) and this never bothered the rest of the planet – nor the Luddites in our midst!!

In case you forgot, dear readers, the Luddites were that bunch of fanatics in England who went berserk and started destroying machines in cotton and wool manufacturing because they didn’t like “progress”. They preferred the way things “always were” – to remain in grinding rural poverty!! But most Guyanese (not only those who voted PPP) are happy at the pace of development.
Down with anarchy!!

…in Europe

Imagine the consternation of those who believed sanctions against Russia would rein in Putin. Facing their economy grinding to a halt if Russian energy’s cut off, even Germany has buckled!!
Ho hum…another billion barrels
Europe divides on gas