By Thimibirivela Ranarala –
The article “Enter Gota” by the ‘Political Editor’ of the Sunday Observer (hereafter PESO), whoever he/she may be, cruises the Roman circus, and finds Caligula a fitting forebear to the Rajapaksas who, it is concluded, endanger “the liberal project” of the ruling delusionaries.
A lover of empires, PESO insists, Caligula looted Rome’s treasury, expropriated the poor, and liquidated opposition, 2,000 long years ago. PESO finds him resonating strongly with the Rajapaksa term of office of 4 years past.
Does this esteemed editor even know that the myths about Caligula’s cruelty were meant to divert from the same Emperor who killed Jesus Christ, the one who also killed Caligula’s parents? Or that the ‘liberal’ project has its roots in English slavery and a master race?
Now English exorcists have long demanded demons to justify interference. And this Political Editor of the Sunday Observer, a paper still shaking off its colonial shackles, clearly feels it must supply the English their pound of demon.
In 1814, London’s parliament recorded “Our government of Ceylon has made a Proclamation detailing several murders done by people we say are subjects of the King of Kandy. This sort of Proclamation usually precedes a military strike.”
PESO obviously hasn’t read Professor Gananath Obeyesekere’s The Doomed King, which shows how faux such English details were.
Meanwhile Gotabaya Rajapaksa is not even crowned yet, and with the Hitler hit having hurtled long past its hoopla, PESO now peers up the toga of the Roman calendar.
One wonders if Colombo’s anglomaniacs will soon exhaust all ink in exorcising their rising pandemonia – all their devils.
PESO’s brutology of course does not recall the white men who almost emptied entire continents of original people. No Columbuses, John Smiths or Washingtons or Jacksons, Cartiers or MacDonalds, Tasmans or Cooks. No Brownriggs and Torringtons of England’s own torrid past in Lanka. And certainly taboo for PESOs are the Bushes, Blairs, Obamas and Clintons of present day megalomania.
Not knowing our own Yaka past, a deficiency that malignantly degenerates brain cells, such intellectuals feel that citing Greek and Roman history gives them intellectual bulk. They know more about Rome than Ruhuna. More about Caligula than Kegalla. So which Roman kleptocrat would PESO compare with another liberal appointee, Singaporu Arjuna?
PESO’s cankerous scriptures lack the needed perspective and history, and proportionality. The English-backed mass murderer of the 1980s in Lanka is happily elided over with much-adverted accusations of sporadic assassinations. Just like Lake House’s new found journo pals in New York who justify US imperialism, which kills millions and then lament one or two, just to wield their power to brainwash the great unwashed of this world.
But do they even really know Rome’s Caligula?
Apparently Caligula’s greatest crime was that he wished to move the capital of empire from Rome to Alexandria in Egypt. This eerily echoes the oft-repeated obsession that the bumpkins of Hambantota may one day dare take over from merchant-infested Colombo.
So why does Caligula still get bad press? Why has his pastel poison coursed red through the veins of this PESO to drip onto our precious white English pulp?
Deliriously loved by ordinary Romans, was Caligula the worst Emperor ever, as Emperors go? The demonization of Caligula took the heat off the murderers of Jesus Christ and Caligula’s parents, yes, the Emperor Tiberius! A whitewash that even ignores Caligula’s nephew, Nero, who played first fiddle while Rome burned, even as our present misleaders also pull and play strings while we all burn.
Pajeros & White Vans
So, why does PESO feel Caligula is worse then these fiddlers, worse than Christ’s killer Tiberius, to be thus invoked to apparently demonize Colombo’s current nightmare with no dawn in sight, Gotabaya Rajapaksa?
And what overweening guilt does merchant Colombo wish to whitewash, to have Roman numerology or mathematics make 5 or even 10 white vans erase the 100s of Pajeros, and all that hacking and strangulating and beheading and stripping and burning alive of uncommemorated tens of thousands on imported rubber tires? Is it so effortlessly forgot! Is mass murder all our leaders can offer?
Perhaps PESO is as confused (or pernicious) as the main biographers of Caligula who wrote almost centuries after he actually ruled.
Gaius Suetonius Tranquillus, patrician-panderer and unofficial biographer of all the official Ceasars, wrote 80 years after Caligula’s death. Cassius Dio, 180 years after. As for the Philosopher Philo, it is said that he, being Jewish, hated Caligula for setting up Jupiter over Jehovah in Jerusalem. And like those bought-out Jews who cried out against Jesus (or so the English Bible says), “Crucify him! Crucify him!”, Philo wanted Caligula so impaled, if not by nails by such myth-making as are the selective slingshots of this PESO.
Now much Roman and Greek civilization talk is pure English fabrication – much of the records doctored – pure simulacra. So is PESO’s boorish banter. One can bet PESO hasn’t even heard of Black Athena – about the African and Asian Roots of Classical Civilization.
Liberals and Slavery
Why does Rome and Greece feature so clearly in the recall of Colombo’s so-called intellectuals?
What indoctrinations have their limited international schoolings afforded that they take refuge in 19thC English penchants to find glory not just gore in Greek and Rome? A penchant sought as the English destroyed civilizations and starved them in Asia, Africa and the Americas in Victoria’s Holocausts – the real Victoria’s Secrets!
Liberalism has as its origins the protection of private property, which includes ownership of human flesh, yes, slavery. It is no accident that its hallowed philosopher John Locke justified the trade in slaves, and other ‘liberal’ luminaries like John Stuart Mill opposed democracy in the colonies.
What invigorates our colonized scribes to skip hopscotch over oceans and centuries to find antecedents for whatever villainy or chivalry they seek, when they could just as easily find them in the digital decimals of recent decades past, lending their ears to the flushings of the Kelaniya, or more precisely, to the batterings of Batalanda?
Why Uncle Caligula and nephew Nero, when we have the sexagesimal malevolence of tens of thousands dismembered by uncles and nephews and their parties right here that measure far beyond the singular bruisings of the Caligulate brothers?
The English puppeteers, acquired imperial antecedence by discovering Rome and Greece in the 1800s only, and then only to take Levantine business away from the Ottomans.
This typical Colombo penchant for “Roman and Greek” mimics their English mentor’s miseducation who when invading our part of the world in the 19th C, sought to claim some civilizational antecedents that justified and elided over their rapaciousness, claiming for themselves a more haute dispensation (which exists only in the heads).
As for Caligula, it’s another misfire. PESO says: Caligula made his horse an envoy (perhaps it’s a hit at Doctor Dayan who scampers here and there!), when actually Caligula made his nag a consul and a priest. It was high satire on Caligula’s part that PESO’s bullish pens fail to perceive. Pah!
The only link to Caligula is this: he was a logical manifestation of a rot that had set in long before. The problem was a rapacious empire then in decline, not whether one or two emperors were benevolent or evil.
PESO as tattling satrap, as ink-hole of North Atlantic empire, is being taken for a ride like Caligula’s packhorse.
Let us end with a lesson in economics and economizing. In an age of heightening (and collapsing) capitalist fervor, let us recall capital’s penchant to forever acquire and merge, to play monopoly.
It is thus not just scripture that each successive regime within our mercantilist rentier mess will concentrate into fewer hands to further their grandiose gatherings, as the levers for such pilferage become more geared at the top. So can a central bank’s bondage in billions compare with the flim-flam afore of yester rule?
Again, a little proportionality and perspective, please! Assassinating the messenger will not thwart the message. Just as they attempted to ‘disappear’ communism in the 20th century, ideas cannot be assaulted and kidnapped by white vans or by pajeros or by mislaid Lake House scriveners.
Ah Caligula! Thy name is indeed taken in vain to waste more imported paper. And if it is to Rome we must go, then let us examine the Hydra, with its many heads, which when one is cut off, another pops up.
For we need no emperors benevolent or cruel. Saddam and Ghaddafi, who provided excellent social programs to their people, were vilified and assassinated by this ‘liberal’ Empire, and their countries thrown into chaos. We do need a strong state and executive president, but what we more urgently require is broad-based strong leadership at every level, of movements of trained cadres.
Astute South African commentator Maisela Kekana, not a fan of South Africa’s reconciliations that enable 90% of land to be still owned by whites, states this clearly, “What we need is immortal human leadership. We should be able to build and create institutions that outlive us mortals, like the Chinese model. It’s not perfect, but it’s the only one that seems to get the job done, and at the same time it’s giving the US monster sleepless nights. Gone are the days of one man shows. The Hydra is the way to go. Multiple leadership structures at many different levels. Ten to fifteen years max in one position. Constant and continued dynamic training and change in leadership. Public acknowledgement and gratitude for good leadership. Naming and shaming for bad leadership stock. Permanent reevaluation of institutions and their performance.
Struggle is for life. A Luta Continua. Be strong and stay focussed.