Home Letters It is time Guyanese reject snake oil peddled by David Hinds
At the risk of being characterised as “absurd”, “nonsensical”, and “foolish”, I would like to address the deficiencies in Dr David Hinds’ article captioned, “It is the role of Government in Guyana to directly and indirectly create employment for its citizens”.
Hinds anchors his arguments in the “thinking of Jagan’s PPP, Burnham’s PNC and Rodney’s WPA”. Guyanese must be thankful to the CIA and British for their machinations in removing Jagan because Guyana would have been reduced to a Cuban style dictatorship. While Burnham wreaked havoc on the Guyanese economy experimenting with nationalisation, price controls, etc, Jagan deemed it “old wine in new bottle” and offered “critical support”. Rodney was the ideological twin of Robert Mugabe. His death [whether by his mishandling of explosive or treachery] saved Guyana from the faith of becoming another Zimbabwe-style disaster.
Hinds seeks to liberate Guyanese from “four centuries of economic and political bondage” and advocates Government determining “who gets what, when and how”. Replacing massa with Government does not liberate Guyanese from “economic and political bondage.” Not massa but Government will take care of everything. Instead of liberation, Hinds institutionalises the dependency mindset of the plantation slave.
Hinds fails to grasp the complexities of the Guyanese economy. Accordingly, he believes that Guyana is a “mini-private sector that is mostly engaged in “buying and selling” and does not have a “thriving and diverse private sector”.
On his way to Buxton, Hinds should take a detour to Ogle. He will see the nascent Guyanese aviation sector. Furthermore, Hinds is clearly oblivious to all the construction that has taken place around the country, totally disregards the mining, timber, hotel, rice, sugar, bauxite, etc. Instead, he wants Government to determine “who gets what, when and how”. Guyanese will do well to remember the privation that they experienced with socialism. The ETB, co-op stores, KSI did not deliver for the Guyanese populace.
Hinds, at his most dangerous, advocates the economic equivalent of “crack cocaine” – that is cash transfer to the poor. While this proposal sounds appealing, it reinforces the very dependency that he so desperately wants to overcome. Hinds should take a refresher in primary school proverbs – Give a man a fish and you feed him for a day; teach a man to fish and you feed him for a lifetime. The Government of Guyana should focus on education – build schools, award scholarships to study abroad; invest in hospitals; build roads, sewer systems, electricity grids, water, etc. Doling out cash is not the role of Government.
It is time Guyanese reject the snake oil peddled by Hinds and his ilk.