21 June, 2024

Blog

Still, The Mirage

By Tisaranee Gunasekara

“It is apparent that the continued inaction to reintroduce and/or to raise taxes, and regain the government revenue that was lost, brought about an adverse impact on the economy which had a domino effect on the entire social fabric.” ~ Supreme Court of Sri Lanka

The Supreme Court judgement about the Rajapaksa culpability for Sri Lanka’s economic ruin couldn’t have come at a better time. The sense of hope generated by the ending of chronic shortages and the partial restoration of normalcy has waned. The forward movement of the economy has grinded to a halt, impeded by multiple malaises solidified through inaction and indifference into components of the governance landscape. The president is no longer walking the talk and the parliament is a demented kindergarten where most debates degenerate into a violent slanging matches. 

Economic pain is no more a shared problem as it was during the months of crippling shortages. Now the affliction belongs to those occupying the bottom half of the income totem pole. In 2022, the shared hardships of fuel queues and power cuts brought about a rare sense of solidarity. At Galle Face, and across the country, the rich, the middle classes, and the poor stood shoulder to shoulder united in their common deprivation. Now that sense of being in it together is gone. There’s no solidarity any more. Only anger. Nearly a half of Lankans are hurting without hope, a condition that bodes ill for all.

The findings of a recent UNDP survey demonstrate the extent to which the public has lost confidence in the political class, in national institutions, in governance itself. The judiciary is one of two exceptions to this general disenchantment. 40% of respondents trust the judiciary. This week’s landmark supreme court judgement proves that that trust is not misplaced. The judiciary is not immune to the general attrition, but it is not broken. It remains a part of a solution rather than a part of the problem.

That the Rajapaksas have learnt nothing from the disaster is obvious from their reaction to the judgement. They don’t believe they did anything wrong. Therefore, they don’t believe they need to change. Maybe some superficial alterations to regain the lost sheen, a bit of a propaganda hype, but nothing substantial, nothing real. They – and their supporters – remain confident of their own inerrancy, and their infallibility. In their worldview, the only problem with Gotabaya Rajapaksa is that he ran away.

According to some legal experts, the judgement enables victims of the economic crisis to sue its perpetrators, for compensation. Those hardest hit by the crisis are too immersed in the daily struggle to survive to file lawsuits. The political opposition and civil society organisations can intervene to help victims (especially those who lost loved ones or livelihoods) to take the Rajapaksas to courts, but would they? The Supreme Court points out that “prolonged inaction due to arbitrary, irrational and/or manifestly unreasonable decisions and inadequate measures…heavily contributed to disastrous consequences.” A swathe of lawsuits against the authors of those arbitrary, irrational, and unreasonable decisions would send a much needed message to all current and future policymakers that playing fast and loose with society does carry some personal-financial risks. 

The chronic innocence of the people

According to the Bible, Adam and Eve existed in a state of innocence until they imbibed the fruit from the Tree of knowledge. In Sri Lanka, voters exist in a never ending state of innocence, a forever unknowing. Every election is preceded by hyperbolic hope; in the immediate aftermath comes euphoria, followed by disenchantment, despair, and anger.  Then begins the search for the next saviour. There’s no analysis of what went wrong and why. There’s no sense that no party or leader, however perfect, can get everything right and satisfy everyone. Or the acceptance that no leader or party can deliver everyone their particular utopia. Reeling from the last disappointment, we, the voters, clutch at the next infatuation, ad nauseam. In this never ending game, salvation and damnation are two sides of the same idiotic coin. 

In the accompanying popular discourse, ironies jostle unseen. Take the oft-repeated assertion that post-Independence history has been a litany of crimes and errors, with nary a redeeming feature. The obvious conclusion is that colonial times were good times and we were better off as British subjects. Be that as it may, since all leaders since Independence were elected by us, what do those serial bad choices reveal about us as thinking beings? How come we are always wrong, always duped, never capable of learning anything from these mistakes, and always so confident we’ll get it just right the next time?  

This chronic innocence of the voters is similar not to the ephemeral non-knowing of childhood but to the more permanent condition of not being of sound mind. For we, as voters, consciously turn out back on the tree of knowledge. Our voting is sola fide – by faith alone. Evidence plays no role in it, certainly not fact. Propaganda suffices, slicker the better. Some leaders can wash whiter than white; and make every dream come true. In 2019, Gotabaya Rajapaksa was that man, Our Hero who Works. He and his brothers are culpable for the economic crisis. But they did not grab power. They were elected freely by 6.9million Lankans, almost all of them Sinhalese and most of them Sinhala-Buddhists. Even in January 2022, even after Gotabaya Rajapaksa decreed his abracadabra transition from chemical to organic fertiliser, he remained more popular than Ranil Wickremesinghe, Sajith Premadasa or Anura Kumara Dissanayake. Had an election been held in January 2022, he would have won with a comfortable majority.

Why did nearly 7million Lankans vote for Gotabaya Rajapaksa despite the littleness of his mind, the paucity of his understanding? Why did nearly 7million Lankans expend less critical thinking in voting than they do in their quotidian activities, like purchasing vegetables? The eternal cry of being befooled does not suffice. Why were we fooled by such an obvious fraud? Unless and until that question is faced and grappled with, how can we be certain that the same mistake will not be repeated in 2024 and beyond? If we refuse to know about mirages, how can we stop chasing them?

This week, the Supreme Court made another crucial ruling – that the 2020 arrest and detention of Ramzy Razeek had been unconstitutional. In early April 2020, Mr. Razeek, a retired government official and social media commentator, made a facebook post about the Rajapaksa-sanctioned campaign to blame the pandemic on Muslims. Muslims, for the sake of all Lankans, should counter these malicious lies, Mr. Razeek wrote, via an ideological jihad (struggle) for justice and democracy, waged with pen and keyboard.

The closely argued and superbly penned judgement also contains a copy of the original Sinhala post. It’s hard to understand how anyone could have been regarded this post as terroristic. But the details revealed in the various respondent statements indicate that Mr. Razeek’s demonization and arrest were a continuation of the broader anti-Muslim campaign which brought the Rajapaksas such rich politico-electoral dividends. As the Supreme Court judgement points out, the information about Mr. Razeek’s supposed criminality “was first received by the CID from the Ministry of Defence.” The informant was the Military Services Assistant to Defence Secretary Kamal Gunaratne (fourth respondent). “In fact, according to this B report, MGLS Hemachandra (third respondent) was the ‘complainant’ whose complaint to the CID dated 6th April 2020 had given rise to the investigation…”

The CID of Ravi Seneviratne, Shani Abeysekara, and Nishantha Silva would have taken one look at the supposedly offensive post and realised its innocuous nature. They wouldn’t have arrested an innocent man and kept him in remand custody for months. No wonder the Rajapaksas, soon after they returned to power, liberated the CID from the professionals and put it under the sway of yes men. What they did to the tax base, foreign reserves, rupee, and agriculture, they did to the CID first. Among the charges levelled at the CID’s most brilliant sleuths was that of being pro-Muslim, pro-Tamil, and in the case of one, a secret Tamil. Racism is a broad blanket under which much was – and will be – hidden. 

Democratic discontents

According to the UNDP survey, the most trusted institution in the country is not the judiciary but the military. 60% of respondents trust the military (13% have no such trust while 22% are neutral, and 5% did not respond). It is not hard to surmise that the trust-in-military cohort would consist primarily of Sinhala-Buddhists while minorities would make up most of the have-no-trust and neutral categories. After all, Lankan military is Lankan in name only. In reality, it is a Sinhala-Buddhist military wedded to Sinhala-Buddhist interests. An anomaly in a demographically pluralist land, and a dangerous one.

Combine this (military being the most trusted institution) finding with others – 69% do not trust the parliament and a whopping 78% do not trust political parties – and the picture turns grimmer. Never mind that the despised legislature is composed of members the voters themselves elected freely and fairly. We vote for them while despising them. And in the military we trust. How that translates into democratic health is not hard to surmise.

Our continued love affair with the military contributed to the ongoing financial malaise in two ways. It helped prevent any reduction in defence expenditure, post-war (Against all reason, defence expenditure has moved upwards, post-war. We spend more on the military now than during the war.) It also helped Gotabaya Rajapaksa’s spectacular victory in 2019, a former soldier who would restore to War Heroes the honour and glory owed to them in perpetuity. 

The military, other than the Sangha, is the only near-exclusively Sinhala-Buddhist institution in the land. The high-level of trust reposed in it arguably stems from this primordial identification rather than from proven facts of good management or financial probity (the military remains the opaquest institution in Sri Lanka). The military is seen as inerrant and uncorrupt the same way every current political saviour is idealised – based on belief.    

Writing forty Years after Israel’s spectacular victory in the Six-Day War, author and columnist Meir Shalev described the deadly dead-end Israel finds herself in, thanks to the non-resolution of the Palestinian issue: “Forty years have passed, and Israel has indeed choked. The country is busy dealing with one matter: the occupation… Forty years have passed, and Israel has neglected everything that the Israel of 1948 wished to occupy itself with: education, research, welfare, health” (Los Angelis Times – 5.6.2007). 

We too are in a similar bind. Not only did the war guzzle the largest component of national wealth. Post-war, right up to today, we spend more on defence than on any other subject, from education and health to agriculture, industry, and science and technology. Though we lament about the burden of the state sector, we say nothing about the fact that nearly half of the public wage bill is spent on the military. If state owned enterprises are overstaffed so is the military, and with even less justice. 

No serious effort has been made and will be made to reduce this unproductive burden because doing so is not electorally safe in a land where the military remains popular. And no leader aspiring to the presidency would want to risk being tarred with the traitor’s brush by angry monks, war-heroes, and other patriotic actors. While Ranil Wickremesinghe’s pledge to reduce military expenditure needs to be considered with a pinch of salt, neither Anura Kumara Dissanayake nor Sajith Premadasa is likely to act any better. Military is the real sacred cow, to which even the Sangha defers.  

When a key logical solution to financial crisis is ruled out a priori, what remains is the unreasonable choices – like as hiking taxes or reducing welfare expenditure. Such measures would leave the economic crisis unalleviated while exacerbating public distress, and therefore popular discontent. As voters blame civilian politicians, military’s popularity will increase. For any democracy, that is not an enviable place to be in.

When the Lankan economy collapsed like a pack of cards in slow motion under Rajapaksa rule, there was a possibility that past voting errors would be critically examined, resulting in more sensible voting practices in the future. But that possibility never materialised. Voting is still approached like an emotional deed, a love-hate relationship rather than a fact-based transaction. We cannot emerge from this rut unless we adopt a policy of voter beware (similar to buyer beware) in deciding how we cast our ballot. When we vote, we purchase a fallible leader/government for the next five years. All the rest is a mirage.

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Latest comments

  • 24
    0

    Rajapaksa’s politics was different from other politicians and in retrospect, crime increased.
    Law and order was fully neglected in terms of justice for common man. Judges and all other law abound authorities have not done their job properly either..

    Even teenagers would raise, if controversal property of a palace in Gampaha is not of Kaputa aka Basil Rajapakshe, whose property is that ? who is the owner, none of the judges had balls to raise that question, … why ?
    is that not because they are in favour of injustice or RAJAPAKSHEs ?
    There are a large number of examples of varied kind of Rajaakshes openly acting against law and order. I have read many such articles based on the impunity, “Any criminal can steal as much as he can, but leave me alone” is what MaRa has asked his supporters to do.
    .
    They used subtle tricks to abuse the gullible and vulnerable. The world is proving with revolutionary information technology, awareness of people should be improved. However, the Rajapaksa era led to an increase in astrology and witchcraft in the country. Myths cannot be sown in a progressive society, however, Sri Lankan society has gone backward.
    :
    Artists, media houses, slanderous Sinhala monks, all were hired for their own selfish interests. Songs and chants are aimed at gaining more traction among the vulnerable.

    • 14
      5

      Judiciary is not independent. It is dependent on who is the powerful man in the Chair.
      The recent decision against Rajapaksas by Supreme Court is made by Ranil, not Judiciary. Rajapaksas should have been in jail long time back. Ranil should have been in jail after Central Bank robbery. This is just a threat warning to stop Rajapaksas election threat.

      • 9
        12

        “The recent decision against Rajapaksas by Supreme Court is made by Ranil, not Judiciary.”
        Fantasy knows no limits.

        • 13
          0

          “Be that as it may, since all leaders since Independence were elected by us, what do those serial bad choices reveal about us as thinking beings? How come we are always wrong, always duped, never capable of learning anything from these mistakes, and always so confident we’ll get it just right the next time? ” writes TG.
          Good question. Being heretical, I think the Supreme Court decision was wrong, inasmuch as it left out the biggest culprits, the voters themselves.
          As to the competence of lawyers in economics, I have my doubts. If this trend continues, will we have the SC making judgements about the competence of, say, heart surgeons or appliance repairmen? Agreed, Rajapaksa economics was stupid to say the least, but those who voted for them were just as stupid. If stupidity is a crime, the voters should pay (actually they are paying right now).

          • 13
            0

            OC, I agree. People who should be found guilty are 1) 6.9 million retards who knowingly voted and elected criminal / murderer / corrupt. 2) So called Viyathgama / intellectuals who actually not just propped up but financed for instant self gains as in way of tax relief. 3) SB / Monks/ racists for their behind the scene campaigning, fake news ( creators of Dr . Shaffi . . . . .), anti Muslim sentiments, racial / religious politics ( as they always do ) 4) Easter masterminds, intelligence who worked with attackers, low and odor, 5) PISSU SIRISENA who actually provided the opportunity in the first place 6) EC, Pseudo judiciary and that spineless Mahinda Deshapriya (I will not be surprised to see him doing real politics soon ) who kept flip flopping on Gotha’s citizenship 7) the rogue SLPP politicians like Mahindananda, Prasanna and many others who are now trying hard to look innocent . They all made millions through Scams. 8) RW , Wijedasa, GLP and the rest who shielded Rajapaksas then and now ( though not may be true , there is a video doing rounds where RW is singing happy birthday to Appachi , in that video , looks like Appachi may outlive Parkinsonian RW) 9) All those corrupt, crooked parliamentarians who switched party affiliations, voted for money, received bribes , voted to make money out of scams, voted against their own party stand 10) rest of those forty thieves of Ali Baba family , the list is endless.

            • 13
              0

              TG, tries hard to be diplomatic and polite. Hence she writes ” take the oft-repeated assertion that post independence history has been litany of crimes and errors , with nary a redeeming feature. How come we are ALWAYS wrong, ALWAYS duped, never capable of learning anything from these mistakes ( if at all making more ) and always so confident we’ll get it right the next time ??? This chronic innocence of the voters is similar, not to the ephemeral non-knowing of childhood ( it’s not AUTISM) but to the more permanent condition of NOT BEING OF SOUND MIND” . which I have been calling as RETARDATION. Yes Lankan voters are retards not just Autistic. Thank you TG.

          • 6
            8

            oc
            A case of unauthorized people saying the right thing.
            We are blinded by joy when we hear words that fit into our faiths.
            As you say, the verdict is flawed although factually based.
            *
            I am surprised by the absence of dumb thumbs.

            • 4
              1

              SJ,
              The Rajapaksas are responsible for most of our predicament, but if we are going to apportion legal liability, wasn’t it the Supreme Court itself that unleashed MR on the country by releasing him from Helping Hambantota ?

              • 5
                0

                OC
                .
                The biggest lie is drilaken judiciary is independent to sinhala chaunists.
                .
                And media whores 🙄 are made number slaves of Rajapakse bps.
                .
                Even today the vulnerable is kept away from the realities. YOUTUBE channel holders are the others.
                .
                Most of all subjugated JVP rs have not yet balls to call Mahendra as “Mahendra” but as ” Mahinda Mahaththaya” .
                I wonder 🤔 this people as a whole would ever realize the depth fallen in.?????.
                .
                God bless this nation!!!

                • 4
                  0

                  Typo
                  Srilanken judiciary.
                  .

          • 7
            0

            old codger
            “If stupidity is a crime, the voters should pay (actually, they are paying right now).”

            I agree, but only the voters who voted for the Rajapaksas should pay. How are they going to find this?

        • 3
          0

          I get a glimpse of it when I see some Badiyudeen PhDs out on the road, like soap girls, and selling Maoism, Stalin-ism as the ideal solution for the Kingdom built on Mahavamsa revelation. Kazhuthai Punnuku Puluthi Marunthu. (“Donkey cures its wound by rolling the dirt”)

      • 11
        0

        nimal fernando

        When are you going stop Namal Baby from making stupid statements?

    • 14
      0

      Dear LM: Totally agree with all the accusations leveled against Rajapakse & Co. Inc.

      You and I got the news those accusations were not unfounded with that SC Judgement.

      Now, I have a big problem. Why this “Rajapakses & Co.” is allowed to be in “PUBLIC LIFE” as witnessed by the type of “Birthday Bashes” (reliably learn the expenses were from taxpayers’ money) he held in attendance with VVIPs, including “Maha Sangha”. Why can’t the “Authorities” who Govern this country understand that this “Conglomerate” is a “PUBLIC CRIMINAL GANG” who “RUINED” this country? Shouldn’t they be made to “PAY” for that “CRIME”?

      Our Constitution provides REMEDIES for this. That has to be the PRIME DUTY of the “President” Ranil W. He is the ONLY authority, to appoint a Presidential Commission and assign the task of INAURING into all matters related to this CRIME and make recommendations through the President to Parliament to award PUNISHMENTS.

      Why don’t you campaign for it and DEMAND that from the President, Ranil W?

      • 5
        4

        Quite right, dear Douglas.
        .
        I’m happy to see
        LM now desisting from making his most outrageous statements about the JVP.
        .
        LM and I interacted so much for almost two years – two thousand emails, many WhatsApp chats, etc. He should surely heed what I repeatedly told him. Write less, and write with a greater sense of responsibility.
        .
        Doesn’t this man know how relatively well-placed he is? Yet he continues to churn out more comments than any other. Those of us trapped in this land suffer unimaginable hardships. Yet, he thinks he must indulge himself.
        .
        I grant that his wildest statements have now been toned down. Fewer comments in Sinhala, but there are some:
        .
        https://www.colombotelegraph.com/index.php/lionel-bopage-12-november-2023/
        .
        I haven’t read that; I have honestly stated, always, that my Sinhala reading is so slow (I can read!) that I don’t usually pay that penance. His Swabasha writing would be admirable if he did so in a place where he would be read, but he runs no risk of identification by the country at large.
        .
        Panini Edirisinhe in Bandarawela (NIC 483111444V)

        • 4
          0

          “LM and I interacted so much for almost two years – two thousand emails, many WhatsApp chats, etc.” .
          .
          Facts about SM s emails to me and MF@
          .
          Most of those emails were as bcc for his HATE EMAILS ON RAMPANT CORRUTION ACTIVITIES AGAINT CHRITIAN CHURCH.
          .
          My million dollar question is why SM or the like self proclaimed educated individuals repeat this on and on????????.
          .
          May the kind of seniors be blessed 🙌 😇 🙏 ☺️ with brains in oder to improve the awareness of criminals dominated island.
          .
          LM
          .

          • 2
            4

            LM,
            “My million-dollar question is why SM, or the like self-proclaimed educated individuals repeat this on and on????????.”
            Find nothing wrong in Repetition – Re-iteration, Replication and Emphasis!!!??
            Perhaps reflects the strength of conviction of one’s mind!!!
            The Intelligent person who almost brought the world under his thumb, 1935 to 1942, ADOLF HITLER, wouldn’t have allowed JOSEPH GOEBBELS to continue with what he did best, to convince the world that PANCEA for “all ills of the world” was within sight repeatedly!!? He had an objective, which was never achieved, even posthumously!!!???
            May the lord in all his Grace, permit JG’s soul rest in eternal Peace!!??
            QED!

      • 4
        3

        Regular readers now know him, but none who would place him in any danger. He upbraids me for playing dirty by him. Yes. I had no choice.
        .
        And I’m happy to see him displaying common sense to tone down his comments. But is it real change? So long as he continues to venerate Ranil, whom he doesn’t know personally, he continues to play dice with “innocent” Lankan citizens. He won’t try doing it with the Europeans whom he venerates. Have I any basis for making that last statement? No, but anybody possessed of common sense would know that to be the case.
        .
        He could still do some good by being more honest with himself, and desisting from making use of us. old codger keeps reminding me of the chocolates that I received from LM. They were not requested by me. I had to accept the couriered parcel. I had firmly refused laptops and the like, knowing that I would be used. At that time we had focussed on evil in the Rajapaksas. He spoke of suffering in University rags, but surely sensed that the political identity of the raggers was unproven.
        .
        May he become a better man!

        • 6
          0

          This is absolutely BS.
          ..
          “May he become a better man!”
          .
          What is the the greater difference between a good guy [e.g Sinhala Man] and according to 🤔 him bad guys [ LM and Oldcoder]? .
          .
          1. Heroworshiping JVPrs ?.
          2. Being busy with gossips /boasts about own family not respecting CT guidelines?.
          .
          Beloved reasonable CT readers over to u :
          to decide who is who .
          Some innocent CT commenters left away from CT, just not bei ng able to digest the ludicrous comments 😢 of Bandarawela man
          [ e.g Jit, Hancho pancha etc.]. Unfortunaately.This was not even noticed by SM yet.
          .
          When would the kind of mental patients ever be able to filter the truth/ facts from the untruths ?
          .
          Pigs might fly. !

  • 18
    25

    Is Ranil the alternative ?

    The biggest political burden in the last 30 years has been that who ever you oppose the alternative was ranil who had a stranglehold on the UNP. So this led to a great disillusionment in the country of the system and eventually the death of the UNP itself.

    What is the answer ? If Ranil had gracefully left when he was first defeated in the 1990s ( as would happen in any true democratic system) by now a new leadership would have emerged.

    Sadly this did not happen. The culture of the so called elite UNP itself proved to be deeply flawed.

    Now we can see the truth.

    • 11
      16

      WOW, a lot of thumbs down !

      Either this ranil is very very popular in the country or the tiny group using the thumb signs in this forum are seriously mental !

    • 12
      4

      deepthi desperate silva

      “The culture of the so called elite UNP itself proved to be deeply flawed.”

      Namala Baby for president.

      • 3
        1

        FRYING PAN INTO THE BLAZING FIRE!!??

      • 3
        5

        Ah low life vedda, let who ever the people want be president.

        not someone the people do not want.

        • 4
          0

          Sad enough to see Deepthi Silva would never see anything near to the truths.

  • 18
    2

    Lets face it. The larger vote base, Sinhala Buddhists, are hypocrites, pretending to be devout Buddhist but knowingly flout all Buddhist doctrine. Buddhism has been rewritten & illiterate monks who know little about Buddhism are kingmakers. Non Buddhist politicians from JR to the Bandaranayakas, even hopefuls like catholic Vijaya Kumarathunga, appeared to embrace Buddhism in order to win the hearts of the Buddhist ‘supremacists’. Back in the mid 80s, I remember a giant pandol outside Vijaya’s home on vesak day, with Vijaya & family dressed in white with trays of flowers as offerings for the Buddha. The Rajapakses went further, as saviors of the nation & Buddhism, so, we turned a blind eye to mega corruption, incompetence & abuse of power. If it’s stupidity, its in the DNA of the average SL voter.
    Cont.

    • 15
      1

      Cont.
      I would vote for the NPP just on the pledge of recovering stolen public funds & throwing the Rajapakses in jail for crimes against the nation but that is not enough when the country is in dire straits. We should not be experimenting with political parties like changing the pillow to cure the head ache. Now that we are up shit creek, whatever the party, I hope the voters are wiser & will demand to know the strategy & action plan for economic recovery, public expenditure, sources of funding etc., as well as, the key members responsible for important portfolios, such as, finance, foreign policy, health & education, science & technology, public services, etc. so they can be held accountable in the event of failure to perform. We need to make informed decisions, not be sentimental over charismatic speakers.

      • 9
        1

        At least someone calling a spade a spade! :))

        Native had a great time attacking women viciously/freely as he wished …….. finally Native has met his match! ……… 2:05 ……. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kxAm-PZAq_8

        With less bad words than Native, she is bravely telling what Native should be telling about Ranil! …….. Bad words do not kill citizens ……. Ranil’s selfish self-serving actions do.

        • 4
          3

          nimal fernando

          “With less bad words than Native, she is bravely telling what Native should be telling about Ranil!”

          I know why you want us to watch this clip.
          1. She must be your age, therefore there is age affinity.
          2. She blames Ranil.
          3. She praises Prabaharan (from minute 7.00)
          4. She regularly attends protests, is she a professional protester?
          5. She appears not to blame Gotass.

          • 4
            1

            1. None of the above.

            2. She is telling the truth. In plain and simple colloquial-terms.

            3. That’s rare for a Lankan.

            4.When it comes to Ranil, truth and you are miles apart.

            5. That’s why you have no “affinity” for the truth!

            6. You go around creating a “truth” you are “comfortable/happy” with. :))))

            • 2
              0

              nimal fernando

              “6. You go around creating a “truth” you are “comfortable/happy” with. :))))”

              By the way, are (your Leader) Prabaharan and Duvaraka ( his daughter) going to come in from the cold on 27 November 2023, the day after his 69th birthday? As his family spin doctor you would have access to his future plans.

        • 2
          0

          nimal fernando

          Sri Lankan 7 Star Democracy is in action:

          https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FI4REyNbGtM

          • 6
            0

            NV,
            There are lot of lanken lads working in Doha Airport. Most of themvare unhappy with working conditions 😑.
            Most of our lads are lazy unlike South East Asian guest workers. My transit in Doha revealed me a lot this time..
            .
            My question would be how NPP rehabilitate these youth turning them the productive Labour source 🤔

            • 5
              0

              LM,
              “Most of them are unhappy with working conditions “
              I have met these people too. The truth is that life is difficult anywhere these days. No employer will pay you to sit around (except the SL government).But some people think that anywhere outside Sri Lanka is a Paradise.
              If you want to suffer, it is best to do it at home.

              • 4
                0

                OC,
                .
                “But some people think that anywhere outside Sri Lanka is a Paradise.
                If you want to suffer, it is best to do it at home.”.
                .
                It s just they feel cleaning a toilett is bad thing. This mentality will have to change drastically if srilanka has to turn a Singapore. These guys if they did nt leave the island, their only choice would be become a Tuk tuk driver, however they might have thoght once they leave the country they would be blessed with aladin s wonder lamp. SADUVSADU effect has put this stupid people in eternal blindness.
                .
                Alas our sinhalaya s and kewum kanna weerayas😢😢😢😢

        • 6
          2

          Dear nimal fernando,
          .
          Thanks for this:

          .
          https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kxAm-PZAq_8
          .
          I listened to the entire hour, and even replayed bits. The participants were wonderfully eloquent, spoke with confidence, and – this mattered more than all else – were authentic. The participants described themselves as “middle-class”. In the Lankan context, many would regard them as higher than that. Depends on perspective. These were Colombo residents; the Church referred to is the Roman Catholic one on Thimbirigasyaya Road: St Theresa’s, with entrance from Sunethra Lane.
          .
          At 23 minutes there is a reference to the Dinesh Schaffter “suicide”. On 6/12/2023, I had a 17 minute WhatsApp chat with his father, Chandra, starting 9:27 am. I had met the already old man only once, on 5th April, 2014. How can I be so precise? I shall tell you tomorrow. It involves the “notorious” S. Thomas’ Colleges, the three I studied in, Bandarawela, Gurutalawa and Mt Lavinia. I haven’t troubled him since then, but may now email him.
          .
          Panini Edirisinhe of Bandarawela (NIC 483111444V)

      • 3
        1

        Raj-UK, The second raja of navy went to jail once and Shiranthi went in there to feed him. Never held accountable as you request.

      • 9
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        Raj-UK: Didn’t you see the “GIANT PANDAL” put up in front of the Temple Trees – the Official Residence of Late R Premadasa?

        What is compared to Vijaya’s and his family picture to that of “LIVE” – BHAKTI GEETHA sang by no lesser person than the “First Lady” – Hema Premadasa?

        Remember these and many more of the “8os” you speak of.

        • 4
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          Douglas

          It was just an example of the hypocrisy of politicians. I don’t go ‘walkabouts’ on wesak day like in Desmond de Silva;s famous bail, so not aware of vesak pandols outside Temple Trees.but I have seen the pandol outside Vijaya’s house in Narahenpita on my way to work. Till then, I thought vesak pandols depicted the life of Buddha, not that of political hopefuls. Anyway, Premadasa was a staunch Buddhist but whether he was conversant & actually practiced Buddhism is another matter.

      • 4
        1

        Dear Raj-UK,
        .
        It is a truism
        that we cannot run any social unit the size of Lanka without politicians. About fifteen million voters is a huge number; we tend to think back to Athens – in which Century BC? Only free men made choices then, and frequently bungled. Poor Socrates and his hemlock!
        .
        Is your adopted country all that much better?
        .
        https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KWbIQVeSvuA
        .
        That is about bringing Cameron into the Lords. I find those snippets by the sensitive and gay Professor Wilson very useful. He’s fair by Sunak, but we see all those players as humans.
        .
        Being half-hearted about the NPP isn’t going to help anybody. I’m not asking you to go overboard the way I do, but being over-fastidious the way you are won’t help, either. AKD has got his analysis mostly right, and he has to exude more hope than is realistic.
        .
        It’s a long hard road ahead; let’s not be faint-hearted!
        .
        Panini Edirisinhe of Bandarawela
        .

        • 3
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          Sinhala_Man

          I am not a Tory supporter per se but I weigh my options when it comes to election time. Unlike in SL, I can expect answers to my queries from any mainstream party & make my own decision. The ‘shadow cabinet’ of the opposition parties are able to state whether they support govt. policies, if not, how they differ. All sources of funding & expenditure are costed, which may change due to prevailing conditions, but the basic concept stands. If unable to deliver, continuation is impossible, as happened to Liz Truss, Boris J & many other ministers.

          Cameron, as PM, had good relations internationally & at the end of the day, what matters is competence & ability. Whether it is Cameron or Sunak who calls the shots is immaterial, its the end result that matters. In this context, my adopted country is certainly better, there are checks & balances, as well as, an independent media to hold politicians accountable. I would be in a dilemma if I am to vote in SL.

          • 1
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            “Whether it is Cameron or Sunak who calls the shots is immaterial, its the end result that matters.”
            The end does not promise to be a happy one for a party that has screwed it all up in the past two decades.

    • 5
      7

      “The larger vote base, Sinhala Buddhists, are hypocrites, pretending to be devout Buddhist but knowingly flout all Buddhist doctrine. “
      When do people make such pretenses?
      How many followers of any faith are abiding by their alleged belief?
      Will you call Biden or Blair true Christians?

      • 6
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        SJ

        It is my understanding that the 6.9m who voted for the Rajapakses were largely Sinhala Buddhists but having said that, I am aware of an old school buddy, a devout Christian, was also a great fan of the Rajapakses. I was just generalising the voters but I am sure SL voters of any ethnicity or religion would be happy to vote for anyone for personal gain. Another old friend voted for GR because GR promised abolition of income tax. He is not an illiterate simpleton but a retired senior executive but didn’t think of the repercussions of ‘voter friendly’ promises which have not been thought through.
        Biden, Blair, including the Royal Family attend church as it is expected of them by the public, at least, when they are in ‘public service’ but whether they are deeply religious is a matter of opinion. Relatively ‘rural’,white Christian middle class, is the Trump vote base but whether Trump is a true Christian is anybody’s guess. Its the perception that matters

        • 4
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          Raj,
          “I am aware of an old school buddy, a devout Christian,….”
          I am willing to bet that the Cardinal voted for MR too, though I wouldn’t take any bets on whether he is a real Christian….

          • 2
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            old codger

            “I am willing to bet that the Cardinal voted for MR too, though I wouldn’t take any bets on whether he is a real Christian….”

            You mean the cross dresser.

          • 3
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            OC,
            This is the reason why I always repeated that two different kind of MaRa should be accountable for the deliberate disaster/social and economic mess created in the island..
            .
            Mahendra Rajapakse aka Mahinda Rajapakse [MaRa] even his name was twisted to take advantage of sinhala Buddhists [not real Buddhists].
            .
            Rev Malcom Ranjith aka cardinal [MaRa]

        • 2
          2

          r-uk
          ““The larger vote base, Sinhala Buddhists, are hypocrites, pretending to be devout Buddhist but knowingly flout all Buddhist doctrine. “” What has this to do with ” the 6.9m who voted for the Rajapakses were largely Sinhala Buddhists etc.”?
          The former is a very harsh verdict on a people as a group who are as good or as bad as any other.

          • 4
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            SJ

            As mentioned previously, I am generalising those who voted for the Rajapakses as average Sinhala Buddhists. For them, the only reason was the perception of having ‘saved’ the Sinhala race & Buddhism. I doubt very much if any from the ethnic or religious minority would have voted for the Rajapakse but then again, there are always those who vote for personal gain. Whoever the voter, its obvious that all those who voted for the Rajapakses were happy to excuse their looting & incompetence.

            As for good & bad Buddhists, how would you define them? Would a person who lives by the Buddhist precepts accept the atrocities committed by the Rajapakse as acceptable? In my opinion, the average Buddhist has been brain washed, maybe, from school days, & probably believes being a good Buddhist is about visiting the temple regularly & chanting the verses, the actual deeds being secondary. In this context, any ‘good’ Buddhist who voted for the Rajapakses must be real dumb, unable to think rationally.

            • 0
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              Regardless of the circumstances, certain kind of generalizations are unhealthy.

  • 14
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    Ajith,
    .
    “Rajapaksas should have been in jail long time back. Ranil should have been in jail after Central Bank robbery. This is just a threat warning to stop Rajapaksas election threat.”.
    .
    What if people are made to believe 🤔 that Rajapakses are the saviours of this nation 🤔?..
    .
    Truths have replaced with myths today as no times before, because hoodwinking politics can last so long people stay stupidier.
    .
    Sadu sadu effect is fundamental nature of sinhala buddhism ☸️. Not many would think twice but stark licking b-tree just because it was just mentioned in Mahawansa by Mahanama Thero, but nobody question it today. , that says all about our sinhala psyche levels. .
    .

    • 4
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      Start licking bo-tree from dawn to dusk, paradoxically they can’t even respect ” 5 precepts “.
      .
      Pattapal horu [ high criminals], however being held above due to the stupidity 🙄 of the majority

      • 8
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        Dear LM: ” Pattapal horu (high criminals), however being held above due to the stupidity of the majority”

        Well said. Bravo!.

        That is how Ranil W who could not even win a seat in Parliament became the President. Remember that “Majority” of “134 Votes” by MPs. Doesn’t that come within that definition of “Stupidity of the Majority” than that of the people?

        • 3
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          My dear Douglas mahathmaya, I am heading to an EU airport today but I can’t help hang on thinking about the general psyche of our people at large. It was clear that Medamulana bputhas were record breaking high criminals, nevertheless incl Z genzers, novice voters led 6.9 millions of of 15 mios of voter eligible, reelected the buggers. Remember those wall paintings circuses? Are those millenials and z- genzers different from their stupid parents amd relatives?Today the very same Pingonas like average struggle not being able 😕 to survive the day todsy life. Don’t u think that people are to blame for self- created 🤔 disaster…….?. Ivdont think the future of the nation will be positive. Besides our people in general are lazy by birth. I got to watch a yt video of some labourers that work under Chinese entrepreneurs in Slanka cry for not getting their offs. We too work round the clock in Europe. I WONDER HOW NPP WILL CHANGE PEOPLE ATTITUDES SO THATCWE COULD EXPECT HIGH PRODUCTIVITY?????Akd and Harini sound to be somewhat naive in many of their public speeches all these weeks, even if they held better speeches in the past. However people have no other better alternative than join the crowds. Do u think that crowdscwere not in the past? I only know prior to late 80ties my sources prove nothing is much change in thinking patterns of very people. U ll hurt me but I ll bet u it lies on the people s thinking and laziness and varied other factors. 🤔🤔🤔

  • 18
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    Hot on the heels of this landmark judgement of the Supreme Court, legal experts must bell the cat with the help of the Stolen Assets Recovery Assistance [ StAR ] METHODOLOGY [ UN initiative ] to return to the country the funds looted by the Rajapakse clan and parked overseas .Ranil Rajapakse as Head of State would not take the initiative. He has a different agenda………….

  • 17
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    Why didn’t the IMF as part of its loan conditions tell the government to cut down on the country’s prodigal expenditure on the military by pruning the disproportionately large size of the armed forces? There are far too many freeloaders who don’t do any real work for a bankrupt country to support.

    • 6
      4

      Like God the IMF works in mysterious ways

    • 1
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      Why didn’t the IMF as part of its loan conditions tell the government to cut down on the country’s prodigal expenditure on the military by pruning the disproportionately large size of the armed forces?
      They said that. They have said it unequivocally. Don’t you remember what side the Evil Emperor implemented the ICCPR? ICCPR is intended to hedge the majority decisions not to hurt minority religions. Evil Implemented ICCPR in a way Majority religion can go on rampage without minorities impeding the path of it. What happened to EPF? The IMF told Langkang to make Foreign & Local debtors take haircuts. EPF cannot be interpreted as a debtor, but banks are. Evil made the EPF take haircuts but saved the banks. Watch the Tax. He did not make the income tax more progressive or make the collection procedure stronger. But he easily increased the VAT. where the Rs 50 earner pays Rs 50 Tax while Rs 50,000 income earner too pays only Rs 50 tax. Where is financial justice for the weaker community? What happened was the IMF was told to increase government income by increasing the tax. So Evil purposely interpreted that request this way so never ever IMF will dictate Langkang because Biriyani-Arrack administration is going to teach a lesson to whoever works with IMF.

  • 13
    1

    Even Ranil and Bandula should be added to this list as they were also very close to Rajapaksas and were involved in their decision-making process. Ranil in addition to his involvement in the Central Bank robbery (he still keeps Ravi by his side), has not taken any action to bring the stolen money parked by the “Maha Raja Family” overseas.

    What has Ranil delivered to date other than working with IMF to pave the way to borrow more? This is clearly evident in the Budget he proposed recently.

    Ranil above all has also avoided holding elections and has violated the constitution and the laws of the land.

    • 9
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      Buddhist 1: “Ranil above all has also avoided holding elections and has violated the Constitution and the laws of the land”. Recently he violated the Constitution by giving an “Illegal” extension of service to the retired IGP against the rejection of his recommendation by the Constitutional Council, as a result, we have an “Illegally” appointed IGP, whom I know would also be made “Accountable” for accepting that appointment. I learned that the Bar Council is preparing to go to court on this matter.

      Don’t worry. Be patient. Ranil W will be made to “Account” and “Answerable” for many such activities in the future. That is for certain. He is another who must be made to ROT in a JAIL. Please read the “Batalanda Commission Report”.

  • 12
    0

    MAHINDA RAJAPAKSE RECENTLY CELEBRATED HIS BIRTHDAY.WHAT HE SHOULD HAVE DONE IS TO HAVE SENT A PIECE OF CAKE TO CHIEF JUSTICE JAYANTHA JAYASOORIYA AND OTHER THREE JUDGES WHO DELIVERED A GOOD AND DETAILED JUDGEMENT AGAINST HIS(RAJAPAKASE)BROTHERS AND THEIR CRONIES WHO HELPED THEM TO LOOT THE COUNTRIES WEALTH.

    • 12
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      Paragon, reportedly Mahinda celebrated his b’ day with hundreds of pregnant mothers ??? Is he trying to bribe ( influence ) the unborn children ??? Must be a new strategy in Appachi’s play book. ” CATCH THEM YOUNG “.

  • 14
    0

    It is futile to think of actions by citizens affected by the economic crisis attributed to the Rajapakses. Causation would be difficult to trace. The sensible suggestions are (i) to recover the wealth that was accumulated through improper means, particularly money in foreign banks with the help of free programmes run by the World bank (ii) reduce the extent of the armed forces to a level necessary for the country (iii) tax the politicians and the rich clowns of Sri Lanka (iv) ask the Buddhist Sangha politely to do what the Buddha asked them to do and not interfere in the politics of the country (v) withdraw privileges and perks of past presidents and present politicians (vi) cut down on foreign missions in states with which we have hardly any contact etc.

  • 4
    1

    “The president is no longer walking the talk and the parliament is a demented kindergarten where most debates degenerate into a violent slanging matches.”
    .
    Firstly Ranil is a hypocrite with no backbone. He would do anything to gain and stay in power like all the other Sri Lankan politicians. It would be foolish to expect him to walk the talk. Infact to walk at all, even in the literal sense of actually walking. It seems he’s rather old and infact like Mahinda walk and even talk with a little difficulty. May be his time should have been best spent in retirement at Cambridge Place instead of Diyawanna Oya.
    .
    Secondly kindergartens have no demented. When did a kindergarten activity degenerate into violent slanging matches. It is an insult to children everywhere to suggest so. Kids a mostly cooperate with each other in their fun and games. Violence starts show when they grow up, when the world starts getting in their way.
    .
    Thirdly while the Supreme Court decision is commendable and welcomed, it makes one wonder, like several others have pointed above, if it’s not just another ploy by Ranil to contain Rajapaksa’s, given the elections coming around in the next year, without actually taking any serious punitive measures against them and taking steps to recover the money that is alleged to have looted by them.

  • 6
    0

    What is the benefit of this judgment by superior courts are they behind bars nor how to recover the loot not at all .

    Don’t know if am right in Malaysia they find corruption by PM and in jail term..
    Even the sports is corrupt what a shame could say hidden hands and come back to power

  • 2
    1

    “This chronic innocence of the voters is similar not to the ephemeral non-knowing of childhood but to the more permanent condition of not being of sound mind.”

    Come on guys, this is your Tisaranee Gunasekara; Isn’t it?

    Sinhala Buddhist Modayas elected the Malamalama Rowdies. Tisaranee Gunasekara saves Sinhala Buddhist Modayas as innocent babies but accuses LTTE Leader Pirapaharan of it. Then Malamalama Rowdies destroy Tamils and the Langkang economy with two different bullets. Then Protesters lock Malamalama Rowdies in their view finder. The Medamulana Rowdies appoint the Evil Emperor, who was fired by LTTE Leader. Madamulana Rowdies hide in Evil Emperor’s underwear. When Evil appears in the Low-Class population, Tisaranee Gunasekara lifts her cannon and fires all over everywhere, loosely. Ha, What a paradoxical nightmare is her explanation. The simple thing is during Legislative Council time The Sinhala Buddhists and Jihadi Muslims were fighting. Sir Pon Ramanathan used his muscle to bring them to the same table. The unified warring parties now turned their duns on Tamils, unitedly during State Council time. After 1948, on the very first occasion, the UNP’s even below dog birth Don Stephen destroyed Tamils by separating them through Indian Pakistani Citizenship act and drew Muslim leadership close to him with MMDA. That is how that donkey, not LTTE Leader, threw the country to dogs, which are a life form more faithful than him.

  • 1
    0

    We cannot emerge from this rut unless we adopt a policy of voter beware in deciding how we cast our ballot.
    The problem is the doctors are suffering from the infection worse than patients. Anybody who goes to these doctors, even if they were healthy, comes out infected. Sinhala Intellectuals can only corrupt, but have no ways to correct the Sinhala Buddhists. Tisaranee Gunasekara had genuine defect to accept the rotten Langkang’s Judicial Services, as it is. The Langkang Justice System saved the Cricket’s local chapter, who even wrote ICC to ban their team. On that alone those rogues in the responsible position of justice should not walk on a road that passes in front of a court. Who is the Justice Minister? Isn’t it Deal Dasa? How many times has he attempted to corrupt the Laws with his PTA- CTA- ATA? What kind of Law he wants to pass to control local social media? Who is this man, Sanjay Rajaratnam? Isn’t he the one who told Mullaitivu judge to run away and launch the Rapist CID to keep checking on him? Please somebody write here the name of a Justice of SC you believe that he/she is no acolytes of the UNP-SLFP gang? Why was Ranjan put in Prison? Why are there 850,000 cases pending? Last week, police tortured to death a Chitanggerni youth! Where is the Justice?

  • 1
    1

    The need for Tisaranee to white wash the world’s worst corrupt judicial system is her need to save the Medamulana Rowdies and thus Evil Emperor from their War Crime/Genocides. Otherwise explain me please: “UNHRC resolution says Langkang’s Appe Aanduwa is guilty of Human rights violation on War Crime/ Genocide and Economic destruction. These guys, out of nowhere, convicted a few of them on Economic Crime. But for such an International Level Crime, there is no punishment. “
    As long as Tisaranee write essays accusing while Old Rowdy was innocently sleeping in the Medamulana house’s crib exactly wherever his mommy had put, LTTE’s Leader Prabhakaran who, dragging him out of it, bringing to Colombo & appointing him as the president of Langkang, & you readers Applaud her and lavishly throw 100s of green_thumbs_up, then how Sinhala Buddhists whose innocence is controlled by the mantra called “Biriyani-Arracks”, would vote for the betterment of the country? Neither Royal Rowdies nor the Evil Emperor can corrupt the bastardy innocent Biryani-Arrack slaves, as much as Tisaranee Gunasekara can sway the CT readers in all direction she wants. Don’t look too far; on the other page, the master craftsman Jehan PhD has done the same, i.e., white washing the Langkang’s Justice stem. Aren’t these the Ladies and gentlemen who cried “Anarchy, Anarchy, Anarchy” during the Protest, to seat Evil on the Thorne? Fraudulent Brats!

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