Edwinologys Lab: The carpet bombing of the Ghanaian conscience


Edwinologys Lab: The carpet bombing of the Ghanaian conscience

Despite a great left foot in younger years, E-Lab stopped playing football in the neighbourhood because it had no rules. You got hurt for nothing. Despite a healthy interest in politics, E-Lab has lost joy in writing on politics because it now has no rules.

It has no rules because it has no shame the 'feeling you feel' when the immune system of your personal dignity breaks down due to a wrong done but exposed. It is a powerful anti-virus against repeating wrong. That is why despite our chaotic transport network, history will show kindness to former Transport Minister Ms. Dzifa Attivor for resigning when her honour was at stake. Shame is a rule that makes politics worth credible attention.

For the conscious Ghanaian, the goal in 2016 ought to be this: maintain your sanity. A simple goal. But simple instructions tend to have difficult details. God says husbands love your wives and wives submit to your husbands, yet this four-worded instruction to men and women has caused great grief. A wife can be a cross that comes as a crown and a husband can be doom coming as a groom.

So simple things can be difficult. It is complex things that are often easy to ignore because they are often useless. Your mind shuts down when you hear the word antidisestablishmentarianism. But it works fine when you say rebellion. The two words mean the same thing.

Maintaining your sanity means being a watchman over your brains, making sure that national scandals dont blow your brains out. And oh the scandals have been trying.

Edwinologys Lab series has led me to a conclusion that if you are serious with this government, you will become just like any of them: angry and sharp-tongued. But if you ignore this government too, you become an innocent accomplice in prolonging its life unwittingly. So how do you show interest in governance yet maintain a conscious disinterest to stay healthy and sane? That is the challenge for this New Year.

When King Solomon called it an evil under the sun to see rich men walking while poor men rode on horseback, E-Lab ignorantly described the famed Kings observation a controversial endorsement of snobbish aristocracy. How could it be an evil for the poor to have a horse?

But under the NDC government, Solomons wisdom humbles me. When Ignorance has a horse it will ask the horse which way goes to Jerusalem but Knowledge walks alone to the Holy City, a very long walk indeed. In the end, Knowledge arrives late but the Ignorance on a horse never gets there despite the great advantage of having a faster travelling beast.

Imagine if the poor man on the horse had the key to open the gates of Jerusalem? It will never be opened. In that metaphoric sense, qualitative progress in thought and actions are being postponed in Ghana just because the Ignorance has a horse.

What is happening here is a carpet bombing of the moral fiber of our society so traumatic you can go mad. What is under attack in Ghana is the quality of virtue, the colour of truth, the temper of right. The real loss is not money but morals, the foundations of every society if it is not to perish.

If a repetition of colonialism is an undesirablenausea, how can we be asked to call a 1983 repeat of an IMF bailout progress? Take this bus spraying scandal for example. The bright-coloured picture of the president paints a dull future for many but the dull pictures of former leaders throw bright light back into a nostalgic past. It is only President John Mahama who can make dull colours attractive and bright colours look dull.

Look at all this criticism of parliament. Parliament has gone bad not because it cannot scrutinize documents. It has gone bad because it is too good. The MPs assume that at best, government is bad only to get caught in discovering, government is wicked.

Parliament underestimates the governments potential for vices and overestimates its potential for virtue and so they often get surprised by terrible laws and terrible taxes. That is why E-Lab is convinced that the real problem in Ghana is that it is an underestimated tragedy many want to cure with a vote.

Any faith in the ballot box is not thinking outside the box. Comforting ourselves with a voters ID underestimates one great reality in Ghana today. All cards in Ghana are useless. NHIS cards dont bring health. Drivers Licenses cant be printed. National ID cards do not identify us as a nation. If an NHIS card cant give you health why should a voters ID give you power?

So what is our way out? Those who say they will match the government boot for boot in 2016 are right if they mean vigilance. But if it is anything more, then it may be empty bravado. Soldiers wear boots for a living, we wear it only for a season. In a metaphorical sense, what if you woke up and found government has bought all the boots in town?

In our collective frustration, some people say democracy is unsuited for the continent because it simply does not really work for the people. But how can this be true?

E-Lab has no doubt that democracy has vastly improved. We are closer to its main goal because it has brought us to a point of despair and we are asking ourselves what else can we do apart from colouring our thumbs with ink?

Ask marriage counselors. If any marriage will improve it must get to a certain point of despair. When a man gets tired of his wifes beauty and his wife gets tired of the husbands money and they both start asking themselves what else can I enjoy in this near eternal arrangement? They then may discover that they both enjoyed gardening or watching TV together a new pulse of pleasure has saved the marriage

After about 23 years of democracy, we are anxious to explore avenues of change, dissent and accountability not only through the polls or the streets but in recent years through the court. Ghana became better through a landmark ruling on organizing demonstrations secured by LMVCA. And Occupy Ghana is doing a great job.

The fees for justice have been increased recently, and the faith in judges have decreased significantly so apart from demonstrating, voting and advocating in court, the Ghanaian must find a more effective way to tackle government without hating it and resist it without destroying it.

E-Lab has been gradually led to a new solution only to discover its really an old one. We must not just vote with our thumbs, we must also vote on our knees too. We wanted democracy to give us a voice but we already had a voice. We just didnt like the sound of it it is the sound of old persistent prayer.

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