24 October, 2020

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Time To Say Enough Is Enough

By TU Senan

TU Senan

TU Senan

‘Reform’ could be the world’s most abused word. Its meaning was defined as “make changes in order to improve”. Now it has come to mean “to rip off, normally by stealth and sleight of hand”. The Greeks are forced to pay with their quality of life and even their lives for the so-called reform pushed by the Troikans. The right-wing Tory government in Britain hopes its reforms will undo generations of workers’ rights and improvements.

These processes reveal what Marxist political economists have long argued. That the state is an instrument of the class which has hegemony in a society – today that means it is the tool of capitalist class. In the name of ‘reforms’ the capitalist class pushes the state to punish the workers in order to save their bacon in this period of severe global economic crisis.

In the face of such a savage offensive the lack of opposition is staggering. The vast majority of the ruling parties – the so-called winnable parties – are capitalist parties who accept more or less all such ‘reforms’. They may differ slightly from this or that policy. Some once described themselves as social-democrats. But almost all of them share the same capitalist logic with no fundamental differences.

Maithri-Ranil-ChandrikaModern democracy, we are told, provides a limited choice so we oscillate between supporting these parties. We are forced to choose between the Devil and Beelzebub, one promising to chop off one hand, the other promising to cut off ‘just’ one leg. It can be further “complicated” as they may also give us the choice of weapon – we can choose a knife or machete for the job, for example. What we are not allowed to debate, or discuss, let alone allowed to choose, is the alternative of rejecting and escaping this vicious cycle, limbs intact.

Rejecting all the capitalist parties with the aim of building a new democratic mass party is the only way out. But the majority of the ‘mass media’ will dismiss such an approach as ‘utopian’. It is always the case that the right-wing journalists, the capitalist politicians want us to be deaf to these ideas. Those on the left should take a determined step towards exposing this hypocrisy and stand firm together to build such mass force.

Sri Lanka is not immune to these processes, far from it. In the last presidential election, when the UNP-Maithri was posed as the anti-corruption, good governance wing of the capitalist class, it was only the left such as the United Socialist Party that pointed out the lies. There was a unanimous agreement among all progressive forces on the need to oppose war criminal Mahinda Rajapaksa and to stop the moves towards dictatorship. However to translate that need into supporting ‘any devil to do the job’ was mistaken. This is a fundamental flaw in some of the arguments that developed at that time which have led to enormous disappointment.

To pretend that there was a hope that the UNP would be corruption-free was always preposterous. The scandal of the newly appointed Central Bank governor proves this. To expect that members of the old regime, who were part and parcel of all the corruption and atrocities, could be transformed in a day into the ‘pure saviours’ of the masses requires a brave imagination. Nothing was new in the so-called ‘new government’. Everything was mere manoeuvring. This has now opened the way for MR to come back.

No doors were ever closed to Mahinda gangs. For ten years the old regime penetrated the state apparatus with their cronies. Self-censorship of the media is evident. It’s a great insult to any intelligent people when government stooges argue that there is not enough evidence to persecute the Mahinda family. From a massive swimming pool where a huge shark swims, to various houses built in others’ names, there is plenty that stands as visible evidence of a corrupted elite who believed they could rule forever. Basil didn’t run away through the dark for no reason.

But then again it’s a country where a ‘serial raping judge’ can escape with no major punishment and the judge who defended that rapist is promoted as chief justice. It was under Chandrika’s rule then the Ravaya printed its front page in black (watch Prasanna Vithanage’s excellent latest documentary for more details). Now the very same

Chandrika is presented to us as an angel of democracy and human rights.

We must reject this logic.

It may be the case that it’s only a small minority of people who see the limitation of all the parties. …Still

We must reject this logic.

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Latest comments

  • 1
    9

    Enough is enough, Ranil Maithree and UNP gon parts!

    • 2
      0

      The problem Senan is that the leftist and communism has proved even more disastrous than the capitalists.. so as you say its a choice between Devil and Deep blue sea twice over!

      There is a solution to the problem of the POLITICIZATION and Corruption in the Central Bank of Sri Lanka – appoint either Dr. Dushni Weerakoon who is a very good, apolitical economist or Dr. Saman kelegama. Both are honest and qualified for the job, unlike the current corrupt clown Arjuna Mahendran.

      Corruption and politicization of the CB has been entrenched by both Mahinda Jarapassa in the form of the corrupt clown Nivard Cabraal that was further entrenched and expanded by Mahendran. Both these individuals need to be investigated with help from US investigators who did the Raj Rajaratnam case. Soo too must Mahendran’s son in Law, Aloysius and the firm Perpetual Treasuries be investigate and their assets ceased and returned to the EPF and ETF funds of hard working Sri Lankans.

      • 2
        0

        Dodo, on the contrary, capitalism has proven more disastrous than socialism. If you look around, there are over 80 ongoing wars throughout the world. Millions suffer from malnutrition, poverty, and tens of millions are subjected to severe exploitation. Capitalism has proved it cannot give the answers to these problems. In fact if you look more closely, you will find that Capitalism rather than being able to find the solutions, is actually the cause.

        You must also understand that capitalism is an ideology. When you say Socialism is more disastrous, or even impractical, you are merely stating the opinion of the present dominant ideology. Our education, lifestyle, and our opinions, have all been formed to carter for the smooth functioning of this system.

        True, Socialism States have had their faults, But to merely say they are disastrous is far from true. For an example, tens of millions of people in the Soviet Union who were subjected to extreme poverty by the Tsar rule, were able to achieve the utmost values. Not only material values, but also values such as collectivism, humane existence, love and respect. But due to opportunism and other such weaknesses within the socialist regimes, and also due to threats from imperialists, these socialist States collapsed. Therefore you should investigate why they failed, or made to fail.

        All in all, when you say we have to select between the devil and the deep blue sea, you have already accepted the logical conclusion that capitalist society is heading for disaster. So the question is, are ready to live under the present condition that is the root cause for every social, economic issues you experience, which compels you to find individual solutions to social issue, and while searching for those solutions forces you to dive into narrow individualism? If not, then we are forced to find an alternative. That path to the alternative has not been smooth. But what the society should do is learn from those experience, rather than rejecting the entire idea of socialism.

  • 2
    5

    GOOD ARTICLE BY SENAN AND THE LOGIC THAT FIT IS TAMILS INVESTED THE TRUST ON UN KNOWN ANGEL WITH OUT CONSIDERING THE PROVERB

    KNOWN DEVIL IS BETTER THAN UNKNOWN ANGEL
    NOW THE UNKNOWN ANGEL IS THE BEST BUDDY OF MR AND ALLOWED HIM TO RUN HIS PARTY CAMPAIGN! AND AS A BBC REPORT SAYS THAT MR IS CONTESTING IN A DISTRICT WITH 1.3M VOTERS WITH LARGE NUMBER ARMY FAMILIES IF HE WINS HE WILL HAVE LARGE NUMBER OF VOTE TO LEGITIMISE HIM TO BECOME PRIME MINISTER LIKE PUTIN OF RUSSIA. NOW HE CAN STAY IN POWER UNTIL HE DROP DEAD ! AS PRESIDENT HAVE ONLY TERMS PRIME MINISTERS ARE NOT!

    THIS DRAMA IS DONE WONDERFULLY BY MITHIRI AND MAHINDA TO SAVE MR FROM INTERNATIONAL INVESTIGATION AND TO RETURN BACK TO POWER AS PRIME MINISTER AND AS PROMISED MITRI WILL RELINQUISH HIS POWER AS PRESIDENT AND GIVE TO PRIME MINISTER AND PRESIDENT WILL END.

    WE TAMILS SUCKED INTO THIS AND VOTED FOR MITRI TO BRING MR BACK AS PRIME MINISTER WITH ABSOLUTE MAJORITY! ALL OF US INCLUDING INTERNATIONAL COMMUNITY IS WELL CHEATED AS THE MR KNOW THAT SINGALEASE MASSES WILL VOTE TO SAVE HIM FROM ANY UN ENQUARY

  • 8
    1

    Superb analysis! The most balanced article I have read so far. This is what journalism should be. Well done, Mr. Senan.

  • 3
    0

    The politicians have proved beyond doubt that they are immoral corrupt liars and changes of government is only changing the rogues. The party continues but the people suffer. Unless the politicians are charged in courts and incarcerated in jail this mayhem will continue. Iceland did the right thing incarcerated the corrupt politicians and bankers and the country is recovering from the economic mess. Sri Lanka should follow.

  • 1
    0

    “Rejecting all the capitalist parties with the aim of building a new democratic mass party is the only way out.”

    What does it mean to the normal public? How long the so called “left movement” have been telling this and why they couldn’t they step forward even an inch in gathering public support. If they reject capitalist parties, who is there to trust to lead them? Is there any left parties remain in Srilanka to lead them. People look at the past to judge for future. Look at the left parties. They were in a coalition with the BBS. They were part of the massacre of thousands of civilians. Can you put trust on them? People have no options other than selecting between bad and worse. Yes People voted for Maithiri because Mahinda was worse.

  • 4
    0

    Excellent analysis of current situation and need of the hour without being ethnic bias. Sri Lanka need true and balanced journalistic nerve and the intellect like yours to mobilise masses to rally around a new political leadership as you suggested in your write up. Please initiate it we are ready to join.

    • 3
      1

      All good except calling a Mahinda war criminal.

      Saving the country and all it’s people from fascists/terrorists is the duty of any leader. Poor on law and order, good governance and anti-corruption.

      Even if Mahinda looses which I doubt, the majority of people even those who hate him will not allow this label to stick when terrorists masterminds (responsible for deaths in all communities in SL)are living in comfort in the western world are still churning out propaganda with revenge and separatist aims. There are no good terrorists just to suit geo-political agendas.

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