The Spectre of Mottley
It is mid term and the political temperature just went up after Prime Minister Mia Mottley executed a shake up to her management team – see Prime Minister Mia Mottley Changes Cabinet.
Unlike her predecessor Freundel Stuart who preferred to hideaway on the hilltop of Mount Olympus and descend to talk to the people only if poked and cajoled- Mottley in stark contrast has commanded regional and international attention in her short tenure as prime minister – see Barbadians Take Pause to Watch Prime Minister Mia Mottley’s CNN Interview.
On Wednesday of this week (22/07/2020) the blogmaster listened to an interesting discussion on VOB’s Down to Brasstacks between David Ellis and Dr. Ronnie Yearwood. Both gentlemen agreed that Mottley has been successful in resurrecting the international profile of Barbados BUT the job of monetizing (Yearwood’s word) this intangible will be the challenge.
Relevant Link: Brasstacks Podcast (click 22 July 2020)
The blogmaster has broached this subject many times, the importance of a leader effectively communicating, even if it means OVER communicating. The effect it has on the psyche and confidence level of the people being led is one benefit. Especially during crisis situations that have led to economic and social fatigue of a people. There is a reason political communication is studied in political science.
…in Political Communication in America characterize it as the ways and intentions of message senders to influence the political environment. This includes public discussion (e.g. political speeches, news media coverage, and ordinary citizens’ talk) that considers who has authority to sanction, the allocation of public resources, who has authority to make decision…
The blogmaster concedes there is a dark side to the discipline of political communication. The responsibility rests with civil society to apply its collective intelligence to filter the noise and propaganda from the grist of the points at issue.
This preamble serves notice to readers that Barbados joins small open economies at an unprecedented time in the history of the world. Bold decisions will have to be made to sustain an acceptable standard of living. Old ways of doing business will have to be replaced. Different approaches to educating our people, constructing buildings and homes. The use of technology; digitization. Enhance governance in every sphere of endeavour must spike.
The masses however are reminded the political class in Barbados is a secondary class, there are a few who operate in the economic class; the primary class sitting as gatekeepers and ultimately the greatest influence on decision making and execution of policy in Barbados. While this scenario is no different to what obtains in other countries, some argue the degree of influence exerted by the primary class in Barbados is above the global median.
It is unfortunate the influence of Mia Mottley on the Barbados space looms large and has had the effect of sucking the opposition- political and others – from our space.
This is not Mottley’s fault.
The fault is ours.
How will we respond?
Are we able to strip away the political ragga ragga and use God’s gift to citizens – social media – to intelligently respond?