After its birth was heralded (“make ye ready…the coming of the deliverance party!”) by a columnist over at the Muckraker, (who’d been identified by Adam the prophet) there are great expectations after RISE was birthed at Moray House. No manger this, though!! This was as elegantly retro, as you could get within the carefully preserved colonial ambiance starting with naming the building down to the bric-a-bracs of the aspiring, earnest, middle class.
But unlike what the herald had heralded, however, RISE was quite coy about its political ambitions. But then that’s the tradition in Guyana, no? Politics and competing for political office? Naah! Not us…that’s too infra dig! But one candid soul from the group did rise and concede if “the people” do demand they become a political party, what could they do? Another member announced he was “privileged”, but sadly did not expand on that interesting titbit, even as he accepted he just had to do something for those less privileged. Aaaah…the burdens of noblesse oblige, not the crass opportunism of the nouveau riche!!
Your Eyewitness does concede, dear reader, he’s being quite snarky; but then, he’s been through this so many times, you’ll excuse his jaded reaction, won’t you? Remember those two altruistic young men — Trotman and Ramjattan — who’d essayed forth from the two major parties with an altruistic consumer advocate lady from WPA — Sheila Holder — a decade ago? They, too, didn’t want a new political party, even as they squatted on the parliamentary seats they’d been allocated by their parties. They, too, talked about “constitutional change” to free us from the bondage of that nasty “race voting”.
But maybe there’s some reason to fan the hope in your Eyewitness’s heart. Unlike what the three Musketeers — who quickly morphed into the AFC party, and addressed the “race question” by embracing it with their “rotating” leadership, did – the people of RISE have announced they are “post-racial”!! Imagine that!! We’ve arrived at the dawning of the Age of Aquarius, dear sisters and brothers!! Hallelujah!!! So while Ramjattan, for instance, represented Indians by the facticity of his “race” – as did Trotman – the leaders of RISE have evolved beyond that!
Like Athena issuing full-blown from the brow of Zeus, they haven’t been tainted by any of the fabled six (contaminated?) collectivities of Guyana. They’re beyond concrete manifestations of mankind’s cultures, and rather represent the Platonic categories of “man”. Yes, they’re probably also “post gender”. But they ARE willing to tell us benighted souls, who insist on voting PPP and PNC because of our “ethnic bent”, what constitutional changes are necessary so that we can also break our terrible habits.
And perchance also lead the US, EU and Britain, which seem determined to “go ethnic”, to the Promised Land?!
…of the middle class
RISE is just another expression of the development of Guyana from its abysmal “Highly Indebted Poor Country” pariah status, brought on by the PNC to, “Upper Middle Income” status, achieved by the PPP. With “middle income” status, you’ll have folks like the ones in RISE — from the upper end of the bracket — feeling their oats. “Boom Out” babes parading in Parliament imitating ghetto trash is just too cringey to be representing them!! Puleeeze!!
The rise of the “educated” criminal in another symptom. Your Eyewitness is surprised folks are surprised that some fellas with degrees and jobs are into armed robbery. They’ve obviously forgotten that part and parcel of middle-classdom is the “fetishization” of commodities. To be middle class now means the big (0,000/monthly rental), big SUV and big bling (for those at the bottom end) etc…etc.
Sure, the middle class aspirants will try to finesse it; but, like a druggie needing a fix, some will go for brute force and ignorance.
Even those in RISE!
…of self interest
On that “administrative” decision to bump the Junior Minister of Natural Resource’s Clerk housing allowance by 5,000.
Doesn’t the Parliamentary Clerk have a conflict of interest, since he has extensive mining interests”?