Well…if this is October, it gotta be “Agriculture Month”. Back in the day – of Cheddi and Burnham – October evoked the “great” 1917 October Russian Revolution that was supposed to usher in the “new Communist World Order”. But not even Lenin’s successor, Putin, has mentioned that titbit as he desperately tries to fend off a Western-backed push to oust him from power!!
The Russian Revolutionaries also had agriculture high on their agenda. In accordance with their communist dogma, they pushed collectivisation of farms which were owned by farmers, called “kulaks”. The kulaks rebelled, and in the process of collectivisation, thousands were killed directly – mostly shot on the spot – during the 1930s. About 2 million were forcibly deported to the Far North and Siberia. They were called “enemies of the people,” as well as swine, dogs, cockroaches, scum, vermin, filth, garbage, half-animals, apes!!
Collectivised agriculture was also tried in the 1950s in Communist China, but it failed there also. So, it’s reassuring to your Eyewitness – who’s of strong peasant stock – that the Government hasn’t mentioned “collectivisation” in its announced stress on agriculture!! All the “old dogs” are gone, so no new tricks had to be taught!!
As usual, we have a theme for the month: “Championing food security: through innovation, investment and resilience”. Yup…hunger’s now a “security” issue!! So, now the farmer can see himself on par with those brave soldiers defending us from those nasty Venezuelans and Surinamese who’re lurking to seize chunks of our motherland!! But seriously folks, the war in Ukraine plus the dramatic changes in weather patterns – brought on by climate change – should’ve driven home the fact that food shortages are as much a threat to our lives as bullets. Of course, when you simultaneously face both threats, like in Tigray, you’re up the creek without a paddle.
Anyhow, you’d think that with “agri-business” invented here and the West Indies – what do you think “plantations” were?? – with sugar, we’d be ahead of the game. But funding was always the constraint after independence; we couldn’t very well go back to slavery and indentureship, could we?? So, now that we’ve thrown off that albatross, better late than never!!
Your Eyewitness believes we have a good game plan for our Intermediate Savannahs with new crops like soya, corn and wheat. But he believes it would be better to lease out abandoned sugar lands to workers.
More efficient use for these lands!!
This story on the Kwasi Kwarteng, the first Black Chancellor of Britain, is copied without comment from the BBC:
Kwarteng called out the Mirror on Twitter with a screenshot of the story about him which erroneously used a picture of another man outside a Treasury building.
“That isn’t me,” tweeted the Chancellor.
The story, headlined “Kwasi Kwarteng says he had to do ‘something different’ after causing budget chaos”, instead pictured Bernard Mensah, the President of International for Bank of America.
Mr Mensah had been among representatives of US banks meeting the Chancellor at the Treasury on Wednesday.
The Mirror said in a statement: “This morning, a picture in a story about Kwasi Kwarteng was wrongly captioned on the Mirror website. This was a terrible error, and we apologise to Mr Kwarteng and all our readers. The Mirror has a long history of working against racism, and we will redouble our efforts on this.”
The wrong image appeared underneath a link promoting Black History Month stories on the Mirror website.
Hornsey and Wood Green Conservative Chairman Ben Obese-Jecty said: “Good to see the Daily Mirror kicking off its coverage of Black History Month with this “they-all-look-the-same-don’t-they?” clanger.
“You’d think, given the coverage he’s received this week, that most people in the press would know what Kwasi Kwarteng looked like…”