Time to Vote Third Parties NOT BLP and DLP
Submitted by William Skinner
As we prepare for another General Election, it is imperative that we call a spade a spade. Unless there is some unknown, mysterious progressive visionary leader hiding deep in the bowels of the Barbados Labour Party or the Democratic Labour Party, the election would follow the pattern of carnival like exercises of recent election cycles, with mega entertainment and alcohol being distributed to all and sundry including minors.
The major challenge of the fledgling third parties will be to avoid such frolic and deal with the myriad problems facing the country. They should treat the public with the seriousness it deserves and avoid making empty promises like their opponents. Contrary to popular opinion, the so-called political scientists and radio talk show gurus, the people are more prepared to listen to alternatives than at any other time since independence.
Objective observers have already concluded that if the BLP wins, it would more be a vote against the intransigence of Prime Minister Freundel Stuart, than any profound belief that Opposition Leader Mia Mottley, has any new and vibrant programs to carry the country forward. On the other hand, should the DLP pull off an unexpected victory, the country could look forward to much of the same. We have now reached the sorry state of measuring levels of mediocrity in both the BLP and DLP; many citizens are going into the voting booth with the feeling that they are simply voting for a change but with no real hope of any improvement in the management of the country.
Both parties have been given adequate time to solve problems in: housing, health services; public transportation; education, public service and judiciary reform, land reform, rural development, agriculture and all other areas of economic activity. It is now clear that outside of very successful party propaganda and window dressing, they have been failing and are now clearly out of ideas. Their daily criticisms of each other are classical examples of the pot calling the kettle black!
Our musical chairs democracy can no longer escape the reality of a new world economic order and the need to quickly adjust to the challenges it presents. The days of serving warmed over cold soup cannot continue. The only group of citizens oblivious to this reality, is the now totally blind die-hard supporters of the entrenched parties.
If current trends continue, and the scenario mentioned above proves true, Barbados would lose this election. It would be a misfortune of considerable proportions and the result would be more socio-economic diarrhoea.