“Choose faith over fear and be courageous. When I think of someone who is tough, I also think of someone who has courage. People who persist have courage, because often it’s a lot easier to give up.”
Donald Trump – “HOW TO GET RICH”.
“This guy must be going through the loneliest moments of his life. My heart goes out to him. His campaign to go to Parliament for the second time is truly cut out for him. I wish him all the best”. These were my silent ruminations to myself when I read a particular story on a news portal in the course of doing my short fifteen-minute scan through the few stories of potential interest to me. Yes, fifteen minutes, maximum two or three times a day to read news feeds… no kidding.
It is a fact that the internet, television, telephone and other technological advancements have the capacity to engage one’s attention with no opportunity of escape for the full God-given 24 hours in each day, every day of the 365 days in the year. Therefore, we need to be intentional about how much time we allocate to these useful but potentially destructive and distractive devices of advance technology. Now, this may sound very ‘old school’ but I will wager it is better to come across as a relic from an ancient age than to be a slave or an addict to modern technology. One of my favourite autobiographies is Carl Jung’s “MEMORIES, DREAMS, REFLECTIONS” (1962) which he co-authored with Aniela Jaffé. In that book, Jung, a Swiss psychologist, talks about what he refers to as ‘reforms by advances’ and ‘reforms to by retrogression’. He states that “Reforms by advances, that is, by new methods or gadgets, are of course impressive at first, but in the long run they are dubious and in any case dearly paid for. They by no means increase the contentment or happiness of people on the whole. Mostly, they are deceptive sweetenings of existence, like speedier communications which unpleasantly accelerate the tempo of life and leave us with less time than ever before. “Omnis festinatio ex parte diaboli est” ‘all haste is of the devil’, as the old masters used to say. Reforms by retrogressions, on the other hand, are as a rule, less expensive and in addition more lasting, for they return to the simpler, tried and tested ways of the past and make the sparsest use of newspapers, radio, television, and all supposedly timesaving innovations.”
But to return. My silent ruminations earlier referred to were in relation to a Member of Parliament (MP) who had lost his bid at his party’s constituency primaries to represent his constituents in the 8th Parliament of the Fourth Republic. He had, therefore, decided to contest for the parliamentary seat as an independent candidate instead of going on the ticket of his political party. Ordinarily, one does not lose sleep over an MP’s failure to re-book a seat in Parliament. There are always others waiting in the wings to un-seat sitting MPs so they can have their share of ‘honourable treatment’, including, but not limited to, flouting road traffic rules with impunity and receiving hefty “ex-gratia award” every four years in perpetuity so long as they are retained as MP.
Now, this particular MP’s case was unusual and it appeared to be a tall order for him for the following reasons. First of all, his seat was in the stronghold of the ruling political party.