No ‘RSVPs’ by special request

Friday, 4 September 2020 00:30 -     - {{hitsCtrl.values.hits}}

 


Humankind cannot bear too much reality. Rest and relax far from the madding crowd is a mantra that has a special appeal to many if not most members of the human race. Maybe much of humanity is

SORRY – work-to-do!

introverted at heart and we all need our moments of respite from the rat race at work or often mindless social rounds after it. 

However much we may desire this much-needed ‘me time’ though, there is no entry into the upper echelons of society, closed circles of influence or corridors of power without the ‘admit-one’ ticket of the RSVP. Respect then for a savvy leader who eschews this etiquette. Men may come and men may go, but I go on – alone, apart, aloof – forever.  

No exit

So we doff our dunce caps to the President of our Democratic Socialist Republic. Time was when our elected representatives seemed to have nothing better to do than go to and be seen doing the grand at an evidently endless round of tamashas. Far be it from us to patronise the president with not so faint praise – but truly “hell is other people”!

In the past, politicos of all types of character and power brokers with none at all – character, that is, not power – have hobnobbed far too often and much too closely for it to bode any good for the larger national interest. It has led to frustration among republicans seeking the development of the country with probity. Scandal aplenty for scurrilous press barons to sink their rabid teeth into... And the entrenchment of a particularly rotten culture redolent with the stench of corruption, collusion and complicity. Is it now goodbye to all that? If so all’s well and good.

No entry

The full import of our Chief Executive’s fervent wish to be spared ‘the trivial round, the common task’ would no doubt have caused the hearts of those who have wished for such a consummation of duty, due diligence etc to leap on high. It will ‘furnish all we ought to ask’. That Caesar not only be above suspicion but be seen to be above suspicion. It will do nicely that no longer will an endless array of suspicious lionisers be deprived of any opportunity to coax, cajole, inveigle the First Citizen into a waste of time at best or what’s best left underlined or undermined at worst.

Let this be the last word on the subject: As one irreverent wit on social media quipped, “No more queuing up to kowtow by the kommiss kaakkaas.” ’Nuff said.

No excuses 

It will, if the president means what his media unit’s press communiqué says, that there will now – like never before – be a leader at the helm of our ship of state who has far more on his event horizon than frequenting hotels and feasting on selective hospitality. This fast on the part of our nation’s number one figurehead in the good cause of progress with despatch and discipline means that the government can pursue in private and in earnest what’s in the public’s best interest. But for all that, a few questions remain – if we may make so bold as to ask them in the forum at hand…

Who will take the prez’s place at the plethora of private functions put on by hoi polloi and high-and-mighty alike? What price the old political culture where politicos are lionised before and after elections? Because hosting the powerful politician is still a time-honoured tradition that militates against transparency and accountability. Where does the buck – as well as the give-and-take modus operandi between state and society – start and end? Whence cometh our help? Whereby a clean sheet as far as bureaucracy goes is inserted into government ledgers? Whither discipline in a lawful and virtuous milieu as envisaged by the leader who’s now voluntarily intentionally pointedly absenting himself from the chase?

In lighter vein, a young formerly journalistic friend of mine turned entrepreneur tweeted at a youthful politico from a powerful family background: “If this [tweet] gets 1,000 likes, will you sign at my wedding as a witness?” To which the gallant lad responded with a charm and chivalry uncharacteristic of the old political culture: “If time permits and I’m invited, I would love to be present, irrespective of whether you get even a 100 likes!”

Such elan. Such éclat. Such esprit de corps. Vive le republic! – if such bonhomie and camaraderie will come to characterise the avant-garde while the old guard is left in peace to work tirelessly for the common good.

(Journalist | Editor-at-Large of LMD | Writer contra lionising servants of the state | Student of disciplined democracy)

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