Lament for a falling leader

By Raffique Shah
August 30, 2015

Raffique ShahTomorrow being Independence Day, falling exactly one week before the general election, offers Prime Minister Kamla Persad-Bissessar an opportunity to play one final campaign hand-bestowing national awards on persons she believes can help sway votes in her direction.

Of course, with serious uncertainties over her re-election and a second term as PM, she would also want to give thanks to individuals and organisations that stood faithfully with her through a rough five years during which mistakes, missteps and blunders were as routine as, say, the rising sun.

We can be sure she won’t make the near-fatal error she did last year when she went public with plans to give the highest awards to two of her nemeses, Patrick Manning and Basdeo Panday. The fearsome twosome seized the opportunity to embarrass her by publicly rejecting the offer, so the PM will steer clear of such high-profiled foes.

She might, however, be tempted to create some “kuchoor” in the PNM ranks by targeting some balisier stalwarts who seem to have been dumped by the party’s new dispensation-Penny Beckles and Errol Mahabir come to mind. If she has, it would by now be a done deal, meaning offer and acceptance, since the names of the awardees will be made public tonight.

Other than the awards ceremony tomorrow night, only the parade adds pomp, and that has remained so routine it has become boring: I shan’t be surprised to learn that some uniformed personnel actually doze off during the hours-long proceedings.

What will remain uppermost in the PM’s mind as she attends the various functions that her office demands is a haunting question: is this my swan song of pomp and ceremony, my last hurrah as the focus of attention in celebratory affairs of state?

That is a kind of quiet trauma that those of us who have never held high office, who cannot comprehend what it means to wield power, to be at the centre of adulation the way Kamla was five, four years ago, can even imagine.

Great statesmen have often said that life at the top can be very lonely. People look at you as Prime Minister or executive President, especially when you enjoy peak popularity, and think that you are on a permanent high, that you cannot be lonesome or frightened or gripped by anxiety.

How wrong they are.

Of course, people will say, with justification, that you choose to be in politics, to offer yourself as leader of your party, and once you consent to that, being Prime Minister is an almost logical consequence-if your party wins an election.

Sometimes that’s the easiest hurdle to leap over, as happened with Kamla in 2010 when Manning all but paved her path to power, possessed as he was by excessive hubris and an oversized ego.

The coming together of disparate forces to form a partnership that offered the battered populace refuge from Manning took her way over the top.

Those were the heady days, the days of wine and roses.

Soon, the days of wrath would dawn, with dark clouds hovering over her every action, some of which were downright foolish.

The decline was rapid. The fall is yet to come.

As she faces uncertain times, I, as one of her critics (as I have been of other prime ministers, from Dr Eric Williams through Panday, Ray Robinson and Manning), feel sorry for her.

It could be that my patriotic genes, hormones, whatever, act up on the anniversary of the nation’s independence, I being a genuine product of our independence, a sixteen year-old uniformed cadet on that historic day in 1962, standing in formation outside the Red House, watching larger than life personalities enter Parliament, feeling a surge of pride for the bit part I played at the birth of our nation.

I learned then to respect my leaders. But as I matured, I also learned that our leaders must respect the citizens, whatever their stations in life, and I, for one, demanded that respect from every one of them, from Dr Williams (who made peace with me shortly before he died) to my contemporary, Patrick (born the same year, sharing some similarities), and everyone in between.

It’s against that rich nationalist background, and with patriotism oozing through my every pore, that I lament the decline of a younger (than me) Kamla, who never really possessed the leadership qualities that inspired the broad citizenry, but who might have acquired them had she not rendered herself hostage to a gang of plebeian male parasites whose only pursuit in power was self-aggrandisement, pillage of the national purse.

They never did let her rise. And they will savage her if she falls.

21 thoughts on “Lament for a falling leader”

  1. I guess you miss the great PNM days of cost overrun, reckless spending, high murder, secret scholarship programs and wanton racism.

    Let me assure you that Kamla put a lickin on Panday, Manning and today she is goin to put a lickin on Rowley. Mark that in your calendar.

  2. We need leaders in Trinidad and Tobago who ill engage in the national interest of the country instead of their personal interest and egos. I think Dr. Rowley given a chance will embody this characteristic – and please, do not judge him by the color of his skin but judge him by the content of his character.

  3. I congratulate the people of Trinidad and Tobago in conducting a free and fair election. Let us now engage in the process of nation building where “EVERY CREED AND RACE WILL FIND AND EQUAL PLACE” in my beloved country.

  4. Hi Mamoo, the results of the election shows that you were wrong in predicting the outcome. The people have spoken. Let us move forward with our lives and corporate with the new PM and his government for a better T&T.

  5. It’s against that rich nationalist background, and with patriotism oozing through my every pore, that I lament the decline of a younger (than me) Kamla, who never really possessed the leadership qualities that inspired the broad citizenry, but who might have acquired them had she not rendered herself hostage to a gang of plebeian male parasites whose only pursuit in power was self-aggrandisement, pillage of the national purse.

    Yeah me too. But I tell ya, fate really must watch over these boards in order to let us know whether our perspectives on the attitudes and motives of each other are accurate. And no where is there a greater example of fate spitting in the face of charlatan, than when it produces an election result in response that contradicts a position that, Let me assure you that Kamla put a lickin on Panday, Manning and today she is goin to put a lickin on Rowley. Mark that in your calendar.

    It is not often that we get the opportunity to see things these. To see people being exposed in this fashion. To see fate responding to their crass and neanderthal like temperament with an in your face “take that you turd”.

    Well, take that you turd. Rowley and em PNM woman put a licking on Kamla. They came out Red and Ready to fight. For five years she bruk up de place, allowed her plebeian male parasites to loot and sack the resources and assets of the country. She brought a tribal bsckwardness to Governance in T&T and the Caribbean, reducing it unto an image of drunks arguing in a rum shop. But the people fought back, and put whipping on her backside that must have left it sore and Mamoo speechless. That is how we fight back.

    1. Your posts and attitude are just as offensive. You are guilty of everything you accuse others of doing and thinking. Your disrespect and hatred of Indians are evident and exposed in a very crude manner.It is unfortunate that some others support you.
      While most people on this blog appear to be conciliatory and rational, your gloating amuses and tickles.
      Do you really believe that anything will change the economic, professional, social and educational power of Indo-Trinis?

      1. That’s how human beings behave when we are enslaved and pushed back against a wall for no other reason than pure greed and selfishishness. GOD WORKS 24/7. NO MAN IS AN ISLAND my friend – Kmla thought she was.

  6. We understand the tribal sentiments, expressed in anger over the people’s dismissal of Kamla. What I don’t understand is how come they are so blinded that they can only see what is wrong with Rowley but CANNOT see the amateurish campaign she ran to thwart the advances of Dr. Rowley.

    1. Kian,

      I think the answer to your question is that they were self-deceived in their arrogance and hubris and foolishly underestimated the versatility and adaptability of the People’s National Movement in the aftermath of the PP’s resounding victory in the 2010 General Elections.

      The People’s Partnership foolishly declared that the PNM had been consigned to the dustbin of political history and that it would no longer be a force to be reckoned with in the political landscape.

      So inept and amateurish was the PP’s campaign in the recently concluded General Elections that I could not help but wonder if one Rodney Charles(now MP for Naparima) was acting as an undercover agent for the PNM. Perhaps he may write a memoir revealing his true loyalties one day.

      But I digress.

      Like Mrs. Persad-Bissessar in 2010, Dr. Rowley has a chance to lift our country out of the political, economic and social quagmire it is currently in and put it on the road to sustainable development and progress. In my mind, the first focus has to be the grassroots where people are empowered to improve themselves. Commitment has to be made to education, vocational training and opportunities for entrepreneurship. For too long, I have observed that a certain segments of our population encounter difficulty obtaining business loans.

      On the broader regional level, I think renewed efforts must be made with unity with our Caricom neighbours. I know many learned minds are cynical about this prospect, but I have not given up on this prospect.

      In terms of closer relations with our Latin American neighbours, it is really critical that more individuals in Trinidad and Tobago become fluent in the Spanish language. This alone can open up many opportunities for us.

      These are just some of the ideas I have. I am currently working on more.

      1. Dear Trinamerican, thank you for your response. There is no doubt that people of African ancestry have been absent from the economic mainstream of our national affairs. To some extent, I think that Dr. Rowley has answered that concern in a very broad sort of way. He has made local history an important part of our educational concerns and rightly so. Our young people need to know their history and what those before them have done for the country. That is a pivotal and psychological advantage in terms of gauging the advancement of young minds. The young people of today have to be able to trace how the lives of Tubal Uriah Buzz Butler, Cola Rienzi, Adrian Cipriani, Leari Constantine, C.L.R James, Dr. Eric Williams, Dr. Rudranath Capildeo, Lionel Seukaran, Dr. Wilfred D. Best, Stockley Carmichael, Mr. Cyril Duprey and others affect how they are living now. Without that connection they must get the feeling that they are like lost martians on planet earth. They must know that before them there were others who tried to make the quality of life better for us all.
        Currently, there are elders like Freddie Ferreira and other senior members of the PNM advisory class.

        1. Kian:

          This is a useful conversation you and trinamerican are having. But it does not go to the heart of the matter.

          Like a good engineer, or a good doctor, a good historian must seek to go to the root of the matter. Otherwise, prescriptions are apt to be only partially, or temporarily successful.

          Certainly we must know our near history. But as a [cC]hristian (take whichever applies, small-c or capital-c), you ought to know that our relevant history as God’s children goes much further back than Butler and Cipriani. Indeed it goes much further back than our being kidnapped starting ca. 17th century in Africa.

          The root of the matter lies in our being sons of Jacob, under the curses of the Covenant. We the “Negro” here in the former British colonies of the West Indies, are of the southern Israelite tribe of Benjamin. We were kicked out of the Holy Land ca. 70 CE, and scattered south into Africa, then west and south into what has been called the “Bantu expansion”.

          The word, Bantu, is what we were called by the local Hamitic African host. Broken down, the word Bantu means “children of God”, as mentioned in a previous post. It is not what we called ourselves. Our tribal designation was “Yahoodee”, another way of rendering “Yahudim”, the children of the kingdom of Judah. In our being designated as “Bantu”, the African host recognized us for who we were, namely the “children of the Book”. In Ethiopia, the Bantu there were called “Falasha”, which in the local Kushitic language means “stranger”. Still today, 2,000 years later, they are called “stranger”. We were late-comers to Africa. We were more, or less, welcome to pass through to the unpopulated areas, which is why we ended up in far west Africa, and to the far south.

          I am saying all of that to give the deep story that explains our condition as a people. God is holding us to account under the conditions of the Covenant. When the time came, God gave us up, as we had been given up to Pharaoh, to those that hated us, and our near-kin enemies, the Hebrew Edomites, Hebrew Ishmaelites, and various of the Hamitic tribes. They became our enslavers.

          While I give all respect and praise due to Williams, Capildeo, Seukeran, Butler, Cipriani, Rienzi, and all the other notables who people our recent history, in this land of Trinidad and Tobago where we the “Negro” have been captives in the biblical sense, our deliverance as a people will not be accomplished by becoming more patriotic Trinbagonians. That is a good thing which I do not disparage. But it will not be sufficient.

          If one reads Holy Scripture with understanding, it will be apparent that the Most High promised that deliverance to be at His hand:

          “And it shall come to pass, when all these things are come upon thee, the blessing and the curse, which I have set before thee, and thou shalt call them to mind among all the nations, whither Yahweh thy God hath driven thee, And shalt return unto Yahweh thy God, and shalt obey his voice according to all that I command thee this day, thou and thy children, with all thine heart, and with all thy soul;That then Yahweh thy God will turn thy captivity, and have compassion upon thee, and will return and gather thee from all the nations, whither Yahweh thy God hath scattered thee.” (Deuteronomy 30:1-3)

          God Himself will turn our captivity. And the condition is that we return unto Him and obey His voice.

          In the meantime, whenever we His people cry out to Him in sufficient numbers, and with all our heart and soul, He never fails to deliver us, as He did our forefathers held in captivity in Egypt; 2 Chronicles 7:14. That is what just happened here in T&T with the eviction of Queen Bandit and the gang. God also answered our prayer to expose the wicked and protect the innocent.

          “I removed his shoulder from the burden: his hands were delivered from the pots. Thou calledst in trouble, and I delivered thee…Hear, O my people, and I will testify unto thee: O Israel, if thou wilt hearken unto me; There shall no strange god be in thee; neither shalt thou worship any strange god. I am Yahweh thy God, which brought thee out of the land of Egypt: open thy mouth wide, and I will fill it. But my people would not hearken to my voice; and Israel would none of me. So I gave them up unto their own hearts’ lust: and they walked in their own counsels.” (Psalm 81:6-12)

          So, my christian brother, learning our near-history is good, cultivating a greater patriotism to this land to which we have been scattered is good also, but our first duty is to God and His Covenant with us. Let us not walk in our own counsel, lest the Most High give us up to our own lusts…

          May our brother, king Dav…, er Dr. the Honourable, Keith Christopher Rowley, take good note. It ultimately is to God that he owes the victory.
          If he does well by God, then inevitably, he will have done well by the “Negro” in this land, and all the “strangers” that sojourn with us.

          “Wherefore, O king, let my counsel be acceptable unto thee, and break off thy sins by righteousness, and thine iniquities by shewing mercy to the poor…” (Daniel 4:27)


          1. My friend Yoruba, thanks for joining the conversation and many thanks for your input. As you noted, our history is NOT short. It goes much further than those whose efforts to describe us in negative terms exist. We are a proud and a strong people. Out of us many many other peoples have emerged. But in Trinidad and Tobago our youths are not as sophisticated to understand the richness of their heritage. It is our duty to expand their knowledge beyond the discourtesies of Sat Maharaj and Kamla and the European account of our existence.
            As we speak, off the southern coast of India, there are islands known as the Andaman Islands where African existence has been since time immemorial. The Indian government in their quest for more land and expansionism are capturing and killing them to make room for the occupation of Indian inhabitants.
            Needless to say that the Indians have no interest in
            investigating how these unsophisticated people survived all these thousands of years by primitive means but their thirst for expansion will eradicate any knowledge that might be forthcoming from these humble people. Part of our problem as black people, has always been that we accept others, and expect them to be kind to us, they way we are to them, only to be betrayed by such kindness. We must know how our neighbors think and act. We must know what they are thinking about us and what they say about us before accepting them. This political season has brought a lot to the fore and we must know them, before we believe them, accept them as they are presented to us and finally learn from that experience. Let us listen to what they say, look at how they act and appraise them based on whatever knowledge we gather about them. We must never be too quick to surrender our kindness. Those we call friends must earn it and those we view as enemies we must watch them close. I feel fortunate to be able to share communications with people like you, Neal, Sally Marshall, Rodwell, Trinamerican and others. I also welcome the views expressed by the likes of TMan, Mamoo, Intricate, Al and others. Their views drive me to further my knowledge into various cultures and other forms of expressions.

  7. Now the PP, like its Cohort in Guyana, is challenging the results of the elections on the basis that the EBC extended voting hours across the country for an our. The claim is that the PPP was on its way to winning the election but the extension hampered them from doing that. They say that they were not informed, so the other side of that becomes, was the PNM informed. Because if the PNM was not informed, then where was the disadvantage.

    Now let us break that down. The PP would have won as long as more people eligible to vote were not allowed to do so. The PP was on its way to winning, but the extension allowed more citizens the opportunity to vote, so that adversely affected the PP’s chance for victory.

    This is the same kind of argument that emerged from the PPP in Guyana after they lost. So no one should argue that certain behavioral traits when it comes coveting power is not shared. Both the PP in T&T and the PPP in Guyana have this messianic sense that they must always govern others

    1. In my quest I have found some rudimentary explanations of commonality by which we can begin to learn:


      I watched DR.VELU ANNAMALAI’s presentation on the Dalits in India. Thanks for sharing the link.

      The truth he propounds is only partial. And there are some key untruths. As always, we should swallow what’s good, and spit out the rest.

      I speak as one who has been there and done that. During my fairly long sojourn in Washington DC, I attended the lectures of people like Runoko Rashidi — to whom Dr. Annamalai referred, and in one or more of Rashidi’s “Afrikan Presence…” books, Dr. Annamalai has contributed chapters — also Dr. ben-Jochanan, Dr. van Sertima, and various other luminaries of the Afro-centrist canon.

      I give them all praise and credit. But having gone around the block with them, and then having had my spiritual awakening at the hand of the Most High, and having taken the vow of a Nazarite, I now see clearly the major errors of Afro-centrism. The Afro-centrist canon rests on an ill-considered rejection of Holy Scripure.

      It rests also too greedily on acceptance of the “out of Africa” doctrine. The idea of an African “origin” of mankind is quite simply wrong. Evolution theory is a snare and delusion.

      “The fool hath said in his heart, There is no God. They are corrupt, they have done abominable works, there is none that doeth good.” (Psalm 14:1)

      The biblical account squares better with known facts about geo-morphology, human population growth, Y-DNA population genetics, among othes.

      For example, the biblical account of the Flood explains how fossilized sea-shells may be found at the top of Mt. Everest. See for a coherent account refuting (macro-)evolution and explaining how the biblication creation account explains known facts, e.g. sea-shell fossils at the top of Mt. Everest among many other geo-scientific facts, and without any –even only apparently– confounding facts that we know of.

      The facts as to human population growth are consistent with the current world population having grown from the eight people that came off Noah’s ark about 4,000 years ago; evolution theory cannot equally explain existing global human population without likewise having to posit some global catastrophe about 4,000 years ago. Evolution theory cannot explain the existence of complementary sex organs in man and woman, nor indeed which came first, the chicken or egg. The truth of evolution (micro) of population changes in some features of species at the margins, due to natural or other selection, cannot justify macro-evolution, i.e. the origin of man per se, with functional sex organs allowing procreation.

      The spread of Y-DNA haplogroups around the planet can at least as well be explained by the biblical account that lets us know that everyone on the planet today is a descendant of one man, Noah, through exactly one of three sons, Ham, Shem and Japheth, who all walked off the ark together somewhere around Mt. Ararat. Not far from there, from the plains of Mesopotamia where Nimrod attempted to build Babel, man spread across the globe.

      The idea that anyone with black skin is perforce “African”, also is wrong. More precisely, it is useless as semantic category. For if mankind “originated” in Africa, then everyone is “African” as a matter of category. This renders the term “African” useless as a descriptor of identity. And if skin colour is advanced as the marker of identity sought, then one must explain how skin colour variation occurred in the descendants of the “original” man out of Africa, and how and when such descendants ceased to be “African”.

      If neither land-mass origin, nor skin colour are markers of identity, then the assumption made by Annamalai, Runoko Rashidi, and those of the Afro-centrist persuasion, that the Hindu untouchables, are kin to the “Negro”, is just that, an assumption.

      When we examine the assumption, in the light of the biblical account, we find it to be wrong.

      For the “Negro”, though black of skin, is not of Ham, rather of Shem. This is implied in the Zondervan Bible dictionary, which defines Ham thus: “Ham – The youngest son of Noah, born probably about 96 years before the Flood; and one of eight persons to live through the Flood. He became the progenitor of the dark races; not the Negroes, but the Egyptians (Mizraim), Ethiopians (Kush), Libyans (Phut), and Canaanites.”

      In light of that, Rashidi’s (and Annamalai’s) assumption that dark skin defines an Afrikan cannot be sustained as mere assumption. Some further proffer is required. I do not hold my breath waiting.

      In any case, we know from Scripture that the “Negro” is Israelite. And the historical record (Herodotus) does indeed speak to an identification of the land now known as India with a people called Indus-Kush, or Eastern Ethiopia. Annamalai is right about that. So the first Indian civilization may indeed be owed to Kush, the first son of Ham. The first global “civilization” is recorded in the Bible as due to Nimrod, a mighty hunter, son of Kush. He would have been the first world dictator, at a time when the earth had not yet been divided up, and all the sons of Noah and their children still lived together in the valley bounded by the Tigris and Euphrates rivers; Genesis 10-11. Babel became the first “civilization” under Nimrod, until God confounded their speech and the land was divided up amongst the sons of Noah. Japheth went north, Ham went south, and Shem stayed in between. From there, human population grew and spread outwards. The epicentre of human growth and migration on the planet was Babel, not “Africa”.

      And as to Noah and his sons, we know from the Book of Enoch (ch. 106) that Noah was an albino. At least two of his sons, Ham and Shem were black. And by the time the children of Israel were sojourning in Egypt, we know that the Israelites were almost indistinguishable phenotypically from the Mizraimite (Egyptian) sons of Ham. Moses was mistaken for an Egyptian in Pharaoh’s own household; Joseph’s Israelite brethren mistook him for an Egyptian; see Exodus. The Bible is silent as to the skin colour of the sons of Japheth. But in references to the “plague” of leprosy, the Bible gives us a mechanism by which one may become white of skin, moreover as a heritable condition; 2 Kings 5:27, the story of Gehazi. The development of skin colour variation is therefore explained in the biblical account, and the potential for the emergence of such variation was present from the beginning, given Noah’s albinism.

      As the Bible makes clear, it is a matter of seedline. That is today corroborated by DNA analysis. The Y-DNA chromosome passes from father to son. And mt-DNA passes from mother to daughter. It is in that way that identity is passed on in a way that is unarguable, and that is quite independent of land-mass. Skin colour, likewise, is not determinative of identity in that sense, since seedline identity is not vitiated by skin-colour difference between parent and child. Miriam (Numbers 12) was turned white; Gehazi (2 Kings 5) was turned white; in neither case was their seedline identity vitiated. We as a people were scattered out of Jerusalem, into Africa, and across the sea to where we are now; we were and remain, sons of Jacob. That is our identity.

      This implies a scientific prediction that may be tested. It is that any Y-DNA haplotype will embrace a variety of skin colours. This in fact we see with the “white” Thomas Jefferson having the Y-DNA haplotype of a Hamitic people, the Phoenicians. I also read somewhere that some ethnic (and phenotypic) Chinese show Hamitic Y-DNA.

      Therefore, in the light of the biblical account, it will not suffice to cite the common feature of black skin to determine who is or is not “Afrikan”. In any case, Afrika connotes a land-mass, which cannot sire children. A more acute analysis is required.

      From a biblical perspective, it must also be explained why the original inhabitants of India were reduced to the status of Dalits (meaning: the broken, the crushed, as Annamalai explains).

      “It shall be the basest of the kingdoms; neither shall it exalt itself any more above the nations: for I will diminish them, that they shall no more rule over the nations.” (Ezekiel 29:15) This prophecy, regarding Mizraim, a brother of Kush, shows that Scripture lets us know that God raises up, and God brings down, nations as well as people. The sons of Ham were the first bearers of “high civilization”, undoubtedly. But they, like Jacob, were accursed. As various of the sons of Ham were reduced to a base condition, it became possible for a confusion of identity to take hold, whereby the “Negro” became confounded with certain sons of Ham, due to commonality of skin colour, and commonality of having been reduced to a base condition.

      In the case of India, the “Negro” is more closely related to the Brahmin, than to the Dalit. For the Brahmin Aryans, as I explained briefly in an earlier blog, are a mixed breed of Edomites (fathers) and Israelites (mothers). They may well have been principally “white” at the beginning, but “white” does not define a seedline; recall the story of Gehazi turning white. The Brahmins are the ones identified in Scripture as being sons of Abraham (Brahman), who were never enslaved, and who claimed not to be the seed of fornication, unlike Judah; John 8:32-44.

      It is interesting — for God gives us signs — that there are a people designated as “Boston Brahmins”, the WASP Establishment elite of the United States. They too are Edomites. And European royalty are principally Edomite of seed. The Book has been fulfilled so far as the promise made to Esau that he would have the dominion — Genesis 27:40 — albeit only for a time. The greater dominion — for ever — will ultimately be enjoyed by Israel. For it was Israel that received Isaac’s blessing and birthright both; Genesis 27:30, Daniel 7:18, elsewhere.

      I am not disassociating the “Negro” from the Dalit for any emotional reasons. I long ago learnt to deal in truth, and then let the chips fall where they may. The “Negro” and the Dalit are related through the common seed of Noah. The “Negro” and the Brahmin Aryan are related through the common father, Isaac. I certainly do not make common cause with the Edomite, nor do I hate or envy them. They have earned for themselves a world of hurt. I wouldn’t want to be one of them when that judgment comes down, as it will. Their non-repentance is all but guaranteed; Revelation 9:20. Likewise, I would not want to be a Dalit like Annamalai, who rejects God, because of the admitted false gods and false doctrines passed off by the Braahmins as a scheme to enslave the Shudras and Dalits in the name of the false doctrines of Karma and Dharma.

      The cleverness in their false doctrines is that there is indeed some truth to Karma and Dharma both. But surgically removing the untruths of those doctrines is a task for another time. In the meantime, the story of Job will suffice to explain why karma is not quite so mechanical as the Brahmins might like it to be.

      This is longer than I intended, but then Annamalai spoke for over two hours.

      May the Most High bring His light and Truth to all that search in humility.


      1. The purpose of introducing Dr. Velu Annamalai into our conversation is very clear. In Every conversation of politics, social or historical interactions, there are those on this blog who make it a point to interject the contributions of Indians in our society. If nothing else is clear, the African knowledge of the Indian is minimal compared to the Indian knowledge of the African. The African history as written by the European colonials, is filled with assumptions of physical, psychological, social and religious deficiencies. The Africans have meritoriously dispelled those myths and have risen to develop the social fabric of our modern society in Trinidad and tobago through our educational, social and cultural habits, using practices that were mostly learned locally. The Indians on the other hand were late comers , who came with their culture, religion, social and economic know-how intact. They interacted with the Africans through the educational process but quickly reverted back to their ancestral practices once they return to home base. The question then becomes, who are the Indians? This is where Dr. Velu Annamalai’s perspective becomes important to us. I am not too interested his religiosity because leaRNING IS PROCESS THAT TAKES US THROUGH DIFFERENT PATHS THAT WE HAVE TO TRAVEL, so it is possible that he may return to God. But his history is real and we should not discount it because there are many (hundreds of millions) who are suffering because of religious rules set by man in order to control man. This is what we have to be concerned about. In this election we have seen the dirtiest campaign EVER ran along racial lines. We have got to dig deep, very deep to recover to earlier times of cordiality and respect, in order to to return to some semblance of natural living. Dr. Rowley, in his wisdom, has asked us to return to benevolence and reject the gimme gimme syndrome that have become so prevalent in our society. We must reject the notion that we have to pay for everything. He is correct in asking us to return to VOLUNTEERISM. We must heed his call to civility and not be attracted to the notion, that one MUST advance beyond the other to gain material superiority.

        1. Well said, and I agree.

          I am glad that you have now articulated the reason for bringing Annamalai’s discourse on the Dalits into the discussion.

          As I said at the beginning of my contribution, “swallow what’s good, and spit out the rest”.

          As I said that, I was mindful in particular of the Afro-centrist discourse, which perhaps I had to go through to get to where I am now. So I give all the Afro-centrist luminaries praise and thanks and respect for their useful contributions.

          But the “out of Africa” meme is a snare and delusion. And so is the idea that skin colour defines identity.

          Yes, there is correlation. But what is dispositive is seedline. DNA analysis comes close to establishing such seedline identity, though even that can be mis-applied.

          May the Most High continue to bless you in your ministry. I sense that the Holy Spirit is very much guiding you in your efforts.


  8. I do agree that the challenge of the results is in poor taste. Chances are that it will play itself out in the courts for an extended period. Extending the closing of polls is practiced all over the world and should not be used as an excuse for a legitimate defeat. I am surprised that Kamla would want to destabilize the country after a well fought election. The PNM has won. Allow them to govern.

  9. I am thankful for the video Kian. As usual you are using this medium in a positive way to inform readers. I have learned a lot from your contributions. Keep up the good work.
    I commend you Tman for your sane comments today. You are magnanimous.

    1. Thanks chong sing, I do appreciate the commendation because my motive is to do exactly that – motivate where I can and share knowledge with those who have such interests. It is also fun for me when your thoughts are expressed in such a positive way.

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