27 April, 2018

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Sustainable Development In The Absence Of Sustainable Communities

By Mass L. Usuf

Mass Usuf

The foundational pillars of sustainable development are considered to be the Economy, Environment and the Social community. It is relevant to note here that a community is defined as a social structure that shares personal values, cultural values, business goals, attitudes or a world view.

The stability and continuity of this tripodal structure of sustainable development is dependent upon the strength and support of each other.  In the Sri Lankan context, one of the legs of this tripod viz. the Social Community is being attacked

by termites, figuratively. Thus, weakening and destabilising the tripod itself. Ecologically, termites are an important contributor to the eco system of the earth. They are soil engineers influencing the physical, chemical and biological properties of soils.  Sadly, in contrast to these tiny hard working and community conscious insects, the figurative ‘termites’ are condescending. They must at least learn about unity from these insects.

Racism and Inclusive Economics

Economic development in a country is propelled by a chain of events. All the dynamics one can think of as vital for a country’s progress and for the qualitative appreciation of the living standards of its people are linked to this chain. A concept called ‘inclusive economics’ is considered an important modern day economic proposition.  This idea acknowledges the multidimensional forms of links between the macro and micro economic determinants of a nation. In simple terms recognising, appreciating and co-existing with the economic variants.  For any country, sustainable economic growth at a broader level requires inclusive growth. “Inclusive growth is a concept that advances equitable opportunities for economic participants during economic growth with benefits incurred by every section of society”.  (Brazil: International Policy Centre for Inclusive Growth. ISSN 1812-108X).

Researchers opine, “Maintaining this is sometimes difficult because economic growth may give rise to negative externalities, such as a rise in corruption, which is a major problem in developing countries” (infra).  In Sri Lanka the economy is not only burdened with corruption.  It is also negatived by myopic, selfish and opportunistic ‘economic exclusivity’ churned by racists and allegedly supported by corporates.  Unfortunately, the government, academics and intellectuals have ignored this aspect of the danger of the growth of racism parallelly retrogressing economic growth.

“Nonetheless, an emphasis on inclusiveness—especially on equality of opportunity in terms of access to markets, resources, and an unbiased regulatory environment—is an essential ingredient of successful growth. The inclusive growth approach takes a longer-term perspective, as the focus is on productive employment as a means of increasing the incomes of poor and excluded groups and raising their standards of living”. (Policy Research Working Paper Series 4851, The World Bank).  From this perspective the active participation of all communities without discrimination is needed for growth.

Nationalism

Among the many challenges that this country faces the dark force of ethno-nationalism pose a formidable threat. The beliefs and convictions of these fringe groups are expressed in the form of religious violence, racist and ethnic unrest.  The volatile situation created by such violent acts has a direct impact on the security and stability of the country.  These in turn causes the equivalent negative ramifications on the economy.  

There is an interesting difference between being a patriot and a nationalist.  A patriot is said to be proud of his country for what it does.  While a nationalist is proud of his country no matter what it does.  It is said that the first attitude creates a feeling of responsibility while the second a feeling of blind arrogance that leads to a war.  Imagine the addition to this blind arrogance of nationalism the ‘cocktail’ of ethnicity.  The resulting blend is an inflammatory ‘ethno-nationalism’.  This is what the country is experiencing.

‘Moda’ Xenophobia

Nationalism is fine.  It is inclusive and, in fact, all of us must be civic nationalists.  This is non-xenophobic form of nationalism and values freedom, tolerance, equality, and individual rights.  Reference to the non-xenophobic form of nationalism needs further mention. Xenophobia is a trend in the European countries on the face of mass migration from all parts of the troubled world.  Ignorantly, our (modayas) fools aping the xenophobic patterns of the West, are demanding that the Muslims of this country go to Pakistan or the Middle East and, the Tamils go to India.  Thus, revealing the danger of empty-headed ethno-nationalism combined with ultra-nationalism.

While hailing the fervour of civic nationalism, it is incumbent upon us for the sake of our country to marginalise the protagonists of ethno-nationalism.  The existence of this dark force will inevitably cause conflict, contradiction and disintegration of the unity of this country.  The patriots of this country cannot rest with indifference while this cancer is metastasising within the country.  It behoves each and every one of us irrespective of caste, creed, race or religion to stand tall above this threat and save this country.

Ban Ki-moon former United Nations Secretary-General in relation to development of the Sustainable Development Goals once said:

 “We don’t have plan B because there is no planet B”.

Liberally, interpreting this quote, “We don’t have plan ‘B’ because there is no Sri Lanka ‘B’.

What the President said

In the Speech made by the President Sirisena in 2015 addressing the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals Conference, he said: 

“The Government of Sri Lanka fully supports the Post-2015 Sustainable Development Agenda and the Sustainable Development Goals and targets that have been adopted by this Assembly.  In that respect, we will work towards the provision of basic needs of the people, progressive alleviation of poverty, elimination of all forms of discrimination and inequalities, and establish a society based on social justice and human security.”

In conjunction with the statement of the President, the following excerpt is relevant, “Sustainable development must be the organising principle of all democratic societies, underpinning all other goals, policies and processes”. (Sustainable development Commission, CASE report 23).

Boycotting ‘Thambi Kade’

Flowing from the above, is it reasonable to argue how can there be sustainable development in the absence of sustainable communities?  Social community as explained earlier comprise one of the legs of the tripod of sustainable development. This is being constantly weakened and destabilised.  For a sustainable community, contextually, the words of the President become relevant, viz. elimination of all forms of discrimination and inequalities, and establish a society based on social justice and human security”.

Given certain ground equations, it is incomprehensible how sustainable communities could function smoothly or continue to exist as a cog in the economic wheel.  The extremist dark forces are out on an island wide campaign admonishing the Sinhalese people not to buy things from Muslim shops, groceries, pharmacies and any Muslim owned retail outlet. Not to eat in Muslim hotels.  Not to patronise garment outlets owned by Muslims.  There is a concerted effort to target Muslim businesses, enterprises, industries, manufacturers and so on.

Sinhalese Will Suffer

Do not these nincompoops understand that each of these things are part of a link in the demand and supply chain.  Somewhere down the line it is a Sinhalese supplier who will be affected.  A Sinhala manufacturer who will feel the fall in demand of one thing or the other.  A Sinhalese vegetable seller who will have an excess stock unsold. We are living in a world of inclusivity and dependency. No one can survive alone. The Sinhalese entrepreneurs will be deprived of a two million people market in all forms and varieties.

According to the New World Bank-UN Sourcebook, “Without basic security, even those not directly affected by violence suffer, and economic development lags. In 2015, violence is estimated to have cost the global economy 13 percent of global GDP, or $14.3 trillion”.

To strangle the life line of economic growth viz. economic diversification and competition will not be helpful. In the long run who will suffer the most?  It is the Sinhalese citizenry and Sinhala businesses.  In addition, all of us will have to face the wrath of regressive sustainable development in the absence of a sustainable social community.  The Sinhalese patriots have a major role to play in marginalising and rehabilitating these misguided people.  Certainly, the Muslims cannot undertake this task because the onslaught is on the Muslims. The pundits of the Sinhalese corporate world have to rethink their myopic strategy.  They have to realise the impact on the country’s small economy.  The government needs to turn its search lights on this issue and ensure that these ultra-ethno-nationalists are taken out of the grid. 

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Latest comments

  • 5
    4

    Mr. Yusuf
    As part of any sustainable development initiative, the GOSL should ensure that the menace of the illegal narcotics trade – of which members of your community are at the forefront, is totally eradicated for the sake of all Sri Lankan youth .

    • 1
      1

      Just don’t be so naive. Earning money through illegal means through trade in harmful and addictive substances (drugs, alcohol and tobacco) is not restrictive to any religious sect or community, but rather to individuals who dare to run the gauntlet by taking calculate risks. No one can deal in drugs and escape the long arm of the law, without political support and backing. Stop being racist and be a realistic. .

      • 1
        1

        MARWAN: Human. IT is well known that muslims are notd ruggies because their religion is so harsh on them. Besides, It is Muslims in Afhganisthan owns the World’s Heroin Trade. IT comes through Megowuwa, which is Catholic/christian. It is well know CIA controls the world’s drug transport and Weapon trade. Drugs are also being sued to destroy different societies I suppose.that is being doen, I read, among the blacks in in the USA. Anyway, it is you muslims (Afghan) who prucdes heroin for the world. Baharain is a world cetner (hub) those money and drugs.

        • 0
          0

          Jim softy, 90% of drugs for world market is produce by South American countries by powerful drug cartel . When Taliban was in power in Afghanistan they completely destroyed poppy cultivation that is used to make hashish and opium. After US bastard invasion it started again in a big way because CIA and other US big shots encouraged that.

  • 4
    5

    Although the Muslims comprise 10% of the population, their spending power is three times as much, because unlike the Sinhalese Buddhists who keeps all their money in the bank and live out of interest, the Muslims and Christians spend their money and keep the economy running, so if all the Muslims buy only from Muslims establishments still they will pull through, and the biggest loser will be the Sinhalese Buddhists, only the gullible Sinhalese doesn’t realize this. This country has been going backwards for the last 70 years, doesn’t it prove the stupidity.

    • 2
      1

      If only Lanka was full of Muslims like Iraq, Libya, Syria how efficient and happy we would be.

      • 3
        0

        If Sri Lanka was full of Muslims, all the ancient Buddha statues would have been beheaded like in Bhamiyan in Afghanistan and all learned Buddhist monks would have been burnt alive like in Taxilla in Pakistan.

    • 3
      1

      Muslims spend their money because you cannot bank money earned illegitimately or by tax dodging. The best way to control Muslim establishments is not by boycotting them but to apply Bhumiputra policy as in Malaysia and ethnic ratio policy as what was done for education and employment. Total number of Muslim retail shops should not exceed 8% and no Muslim can start a business without a Sinhala partner and be monitored by a board appointed by government. Muslims cannot oppose these.

      • 0
        0

        Isn’t it the jealousy that speaks here?

  • 4
    1

    Ban Ki-moon former United Nations Secretary-General in relation to development of the Sustainable Development Goals once said: “We don’t have plan B because there is no planet B”.
    Liberally, interpreting this quote, “We don’t have plan ‘B’ because there is no Sri Lanka B”.
    There was plan C from day one of independence – this was to obliterate a minority (Sri Lanka C) of their economic, educational and business base. It took seventy years. The achievement cost every one dearly except a few who ended up filthy rich.
    Plan B is being implemented. This is to grab the businesses owned by Lanka B. Big businesses are behind this ‘Boycotting Thambi Kade’ thingy.
    The silver lining is people realising that whatever they have is slowly eroding into the hand of a few.

  • 5
    1

    Forget about sustainability goals until UN adopts one child a family policy. When the world population comes down to half the present level UN can go one notch higher to two children per family.
    Soma

    • 1
      2

      somass

      “Forget about sustainability goals until UN adopts one child a family policy. “

      Had your policy been implemented just after independence I would have been free from responding to fascists like you.

      • 2
        3

        You are a Tamil. Independence doesn’t mean anything to you. You will always be under OUR control, washing our toilets.

      • 1
        0

        And the country would have been free from terrorists and their supporters.
        Soma

        • 1
          2

          somass

          And we wouldn’t have to put up with fascist Sinhala/Buddhism and Sinhala/Buddhists and would have avoided terrorism of the state, Sinhala JVP and Tamil LTTE which could have saved the island from total destruction.

    • 0
      0

      SOMA: which ever way you go you can not reach the top point. so many civilizations tried it. they also had religions what ever those were. Some one wrote that Mahindajaro, Mezapothemia were when Kasyapa buddha’s time. Once the USSR – US cold war was over, it iwas Islam.muslims not everybody though. Muslims are dumb too.So, they get caught too. Itis PIVOT tO ASIA. so, Asian theravda buddhists are n the middle. All the Mahayana buddhists surrendered.

      • 0
        0

        Jim softy the nut, where do you get Mezapothemia and Mahindajaro? Is it Mahinda jara and Meza polla civilization? You are mistaken, not in Buddha’s time. These civilization rose to the peak and fell down to the bottom during last 20 years.

  • 0
    0

    I agree with the writer that boycotting Muslime business won’t help. It’s a childish maneuver.

    Only arming the Sinhalese will help to shoot at sight. Remember always, if the Jews were armed in the 1940s the Holocaust would have never happened.

    • 1
      2

      R S Perera

      You must be out of your mind arming people to shoot. Your mind has definitely got Retarded after Retirement. Have a good rest at a Retirement home for all the services you have rendered to the country.

    • 1
      0

      I agree with Shamal, who is blunt, forthright and what he thinks he writes unlike the Muslims who can never be trusted to let out what is in their minds even with fellow Muslims. Shamal is that way because he like the Sinhalese, has Ravana blood gushing in his veins. (Nahara pojje mangachchanne Ravana le pojja. Ekai e vidihata manda karannne).

      You know the slogan:

      1) Me and my brothers against my father.
      2) Our family against the rest of the village.
      3) Our village against other neighboring villages.
      4) All our villages against the infidels.

      That defines the Muslim thinking.

  • 3
    0

    MARWAN: Human. IT is well known that muslims are notd ruggies because their religion is so harsh on them. Besides, It is Muslims in Afhganisthan owns the World’s Heroin Trade. IT comes through Megowuwa, which is Catholic/christian. It is well know CIA controls the world’s drug transport and Weapon trade. Drugs are also being sued to destroy different societies I suppose.that is being doen, I read, among the blacks in in the USA. Anyway, it is you muslims (Afghan) who prucdes heroin for the world. Baharain is a world cetner (hub) those money and drugs.

    • 0
      0

      Jim Fooly, again you are writing Afghanistan owns the world heroine trade. 90% of drugs for world market is produce by South American countries by powerful drug cartel . When Taliban was in power in Afghanistan they completely destroyed poppy cultivation that is used to make hashish and opium. After US bastard invasion it started again in a big way because CIA and other US big shots encouraged that.

  • 1
    0

    Mr. USUF: It looks every one understood whaat you said on the face value. what you have exaplined is your Muddle easternreligious philosophy whether it is Islamic or christian. what you say is against the Quran which says convert the whole Earth to Islam. If so, when we will reach the sustainable situation in a chainging world. I cannot understand what you write. when Allah created everything as we see, how can we change it. It looks agaisnt the what Almighty Allah said.

  • 1
    0

    You say economic Varients. If a Minoreties is superior or equal to the Majority of the Majority like govt comes, Evangelists will head it. Eventhen, instead of Hala, Kosher will be the prominent, Instead of Sharia some thing else will be the prominent. I heard you want sharia even in M<atara electorate. My point is your sustainability will not survive. Besides, The western capitalist system will not survive when sharia bite into everything. what will happen to the Majorty of the Majority. Just watch how they will fight it out ? You talk about corruption. Is JHakkem Nont corrupt. Isrishad Bathiuddin not corupt. One SLFP politician ( he is livin bullers road in a house not bought by himself, I suppose) was saved by Maithripala sirisena for not letting him to be arresrtd by FCID. How big corruptios you are talking here. Even Saudi Arabia had to jail it's Wahabi LEaders inside a Seven Star hotel and billions were paid back. They fund Rohingya fight agaisnt Myanmar buddhists. sustainability at best.

  • 1
    0

    You say Sinhala buddhist nationalism is xenophobia. How about Religuous Fanaticism. why DAESH, ISIS, ISLAMIC STATE, are in Sri lanka. What Xenophobia is that. why JIHAd is erfing the almighty. Sri lankan Wahbis are trained in Saudi Arabia because the govt sent them there. Wahabi Saudi Arabia destroyed Shia tempels and evenMohamad’s birth house. What SUPER INTELLIGENT WAHABIS they are. Saudis destroyed their ancient buddhist past. Now their own past because the book say so. and you coem to teach us what Intelligent is. We were 99% at ontime except some Tamil Hindus. Now, christians and, here you muslims come to teach us. At least if you had a Past like that such as you conquered different countries and did not kill those who did not get converted to your religion, then we know what sustainability you are talking about. I suspect strongly, Rishad Bathiuddin sold PResident to QATAR. So, his mouth is full now and cannot talk. You know the rest. Now you want sustainabiliity from the President. You still do not trust the Minorty Leader representing the 31% of superior People in Sri lanka. You are talking to the 69% of Majority of the Majority.

    • 0
      0

      Jim fooly I think you must from a superior race as taught in mahawamsa but how come you write in English and type on a computer key board if nobody can each you?

  • 2
    0

    wow, Muslims know Patriots versus nationalists, How about Conquerers for conquests, Jihadis and Religious Fanatics. Who are People in little saudi Arabia. WHo are those so-called muslims who cheer for Pakisthani Cricketers against Sri lankan Cricketers. Well you should talk about Mano Ganeshan who talk about Tamils of all kinds and p[reach reconciliation and Tamil and Sinhala LAnguage should have the equal status in Sri lanka. the asnwer is Sinhala people learn Tamil, go and work there. but, we do not need Arabic. Because it is not a alnguage for intellectuals and it is only for parying five times a day and bug people through the speakers.

    • 1
      2

      Jim Softy, you have become unhinged and float all over the place with your unfounded fantasies. May peace and blessings wash over you and your panic stricken tribe. Don’t play with fire if you cannot control it. Using minority communities as scapegoats for all your petty minded woes, will not solve any of your own shortcomings. No one is to blame but yourselves for your own economic and country situation. There is no one alone who can can fix or solve the problems of the world, but in time it will ultimately get resolved by itself. There is nothing wrong or bad in any of the religious teachings. It is the people, individuals who do bad things against their religion, or falsely claim to do it in the name of of their religion. So don’t blame it on the Muslims or Christians for all the crazy things that happen in the world today. No one is supreme or above another. We are all alike as human beings. In our thoughts, mistakes, perceptions, actions, reactions, feelings (goodwill, jealousy, hatred), etc., All we need to do is control and channel those thought processes to come out with something special, beneficial to all of humanity. Not to be destructive. and violent, but live and let live. If you can amplify that aspect into your writing, then there is a place to start a dialogue. Throwing wild accusations and half truths will not blemish the teachings of other faiths which may be alien to you, but which has a combined following of nearly two thirds of the entire world’s population.

      • 0
        0

        Moron
        ‘which has a combined following of nearly two thirds of the entire world’s population’

        Look at the state of the World. Are you claiming that two thirds of this mess is due to Islam? .

  • 2
    1

    Mass,

    Muslims are the biggest tax dodgers in Sri Lanka. A Muslim is holding the record for ‘the biggest tax dodger ever in Sri Lanka’.

    99% Muslims businesses are extremely corrupt, cheat naive Sinhalese out and in to all sort of illegal activities; e.g; Cunning Muslim buys a piece of garment for 300 Rupees from a Sinhalese but sell it in their shop for 3000 Rupees, Muslim buys the harvest from a Sinhala farmer so cheaply and sell it to Sinhala customer so expensively. Remember, Sinhala uprisings (Ampara, Kandy, Aluthgama) haven’t happened out of the blue, they vented frustration out (not elegantly).

  • 2
    0

    Reading articles written by Muslims make me believe what hypocrties amuslims are. Muslims are supposed only to promote their religions and spread their religion. these people come and write things offensive or opposed to Islam. where do you muslims follow “Economic inclusivity”. when do you kill run Cattle Slaughter houses, Humongous chicken coups with animals which can not move, when do you had Beef stalseven in the Somawathi grounds, when you run beef stalls just next to buddhist viharas how can you talk about economic inclusivity. did you consider about buddhist vzalue system. How do you include foreigners or non-believers in your businesses. How do you treat non-believer women in your businesses or even in house hold, just like servants, sexual objects that you can rape any time you want. At least how do you include your own owmen in your life. MMDA tells everything. Your sustainability goals. women are sexual objects. so, the way your father treated your mother, you treat your wife. so, will another man treat your ddaughter. You come and teach us values. You say Sinhala people suffer. that is you muslims suffer. Not we buddhists. When you peole were running for life because of Portugeuse, we gave you security and a plce to hide and live. Show what you are telling is the truth taking examples from 52 of majoroty muslims countries. We all know how you muslims and christians kill each other particularly how you mulims are killing and haressing catholic and christians. You know how you were barred from the Evangelist country and how you guys are obedient even in the Europe. Do not talk about sustainability that Saudi arabians who are Wahabis cannot give to their own Shiites. They kill Shiites. YOu ask us sustainability from non-believers.

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