2010 Sri Lankan presidential election will be won by a man with a moustache. Beyond that the election and its consequences will be in the timeless grammar of human politics illustrated in the allegorical video in a previous post.
After this election, the winner will claim ownership of victory in a war rapidly fading into the fog of memory. Regional political players who won him key areas will be paid off. Typically with a picking of juicy, kickback earning ministries as our feudal system demands.
Those backing the loosing side will hounded for their sins, stripped of their trappings and flung without security details into the jaws of their enemies. In keeping with tradition there will be a few killings but lets not have morbid thoughts about post elections death tolls. Part of the deal making will involve a few crossing sides. No doubt whispered details of these deals will make for many kilometres of clever post election newspaper columns and blog posts.
The winner would be elected by people far removed from the eloquent analysis of bloggers and newspaper pundits. The winning votes will be cast by people who have paid for 30 years of history with suffering. Many would have seen families, neighbours, friends pay with lives and limbs. The critical votes will be cast in places reached by bumpy rides off from the main roads – amidst lush green or war scared landscapes. Their choice will be made on a gut feeling after being pummelled by the cheap slogans of retail politics. No doubt a local politico’s promise of a job in far away Colombo or the middle east will be in the back of the mind.
Afterwards they can expect the usual crumbs from the victor’s table. Perhaps a peon-ship at the ministry of up-country mango cultivation. There will still be the local political aristocrat to go through to get anything done. Tough luck if you pasted election posters for the loser.
At least there isn’t a war on. No more young people going off to die or get maimed. No need to build another martyrs graveyard or a concrete bus shelter with a fading picture. No more grand excuses for politicos about why nothing can be done on until the war is over. The victor and his courtiers will have nothing better to do than to fuck with the economy. All in the name of prosperity of course. A frightening prospect if you got anything to loose.
Despite the cynical sneering tone of this post I am not a cynic. I am quite sceptical about cynicism in general and do not have any faith in it.
I certainly do not blame the politicians for the fundamental basis of Sri Lankan politics. They are merely traders in the commodity of political power. We are the livestock that makes the market place called politics possible. It is the primordially feudal nature of political power in any hierarchal social structure. Whether it is a tribe or an empire the fundamentals are the same. The details of its manifestation is like the weather. Repeating general themes with variations in the details.
These fundamentals were ingrained in us long before our ancestors crawled out of caves to do things like write the Ramayana and Gilgamesh. If you find this disagreeable too bad. Naturally there are no easy answers unless we evolve empathy at a biological level. But that is such a tedious rant.
I could of course be wrong (I am a blogger after all).