Monday, December 16, 2019

Clive Bibby: The small guys fight back - they have nothing to lose!

The remarkable political successes of Boris Johnson and Donald Trump against what most "experts" described as insurmountable odds has to be the story of the year - at least that is the way l see it.

I hope you will have the patience to bear with me as l give my reasons for making that claim and also volunteering why it is important that this region, way down here at the opposite end of the planet, needs to take heed of any lessons we can learn from this northern hemisphere phenomenon.

The main reason these two leaders of the free world have survived political onslaughts (from both the main media outlets working in conjunction with their political opponents) of a magnitude rarely mounted against legitimately elected politicians, is because they have simply honoured their promises made to voters on the hustings.

I find it ironic that this process had proved so difficult for so many of their predecessors yet it is an inescapable fact that both men have succeeded by mining a treasure trove of votes from large dissatisfied sections of communities with no other affiliations than they felt betrayed by those in whom they had previously put their trust.

In Trump's case, he appealed to African American communities and other low income workers across America who were not only taken for granted by the "super smooth" Obama but also treated with contempt by him in ignoring their pleas for help while making grand gestures at their expense on the world stage - a betrayal of the highest order.

Trump only had to offer to listen to these forgotten people and then make a genuine attempt at doing something about their plight in order to get large slices of these communities to change their political allegiance - a step that, going on current numbers, seems unlikely to be reversed in a hurry. Recent polling amongst these groups of voters in what used to be blue ribbon "firewall" Democrat districts of abandoned cities like Chicago are recording a jump in the Republican vote from a traditional maximum of 8% to as much as 34%. As the President said in 2016, " they had nothing to lose!"

And the really important aspect of this dramatic change in voting persuasion is that, unlike his predecessors , this President has honoured his promises as best he can.

We must ask - why has this supposedly simple task proved so hard for virtually every politician during the last century to complete - with their failures in this capacity ultimately leading to their downfall? In a word - arrogance!

Nowhere was that more evident than the contempt shown both Boris Johnson and Teresa May during the earlier failed negotiations with the unelected EU officials who nakedly showed their opposition to anything that might threaten their privileged positions.

Actually, l don't think we have to look much further than our own back yard to find the answer to this question. The similarities with our local congregation of voters and those from other communities of "battlers" from around the world are plain to see- particularly in their responses to arrogance and selfishness in the form of our political masters.

There is only so much the "average joe blo" will tolerate before he or she decides to back another horse in the race.

I believe we are at that point in Tairawhiti at this moment.

Sooner or later, the local populace is going to demand that our leaders pull their heads out of the sand and move towards delivering on projects that will keep us safe.

It might not happen in the next 6 months but it will happen!

Happy Christmas!

Clive Bibby is a commentator, consultant, farmer and community leader, who lives in Tolaga Bay.

1 comment:

Rob McMillan said...

Here, hear, Clive!
Nothing could be more arrogant, or uncaring about the citizens of this country than the UN doctrinaire moves of our prime minister and her cohort of Greens and NZ First yes men. These people are leading the country into financial ruin and poverty. You knock down oil and gas exploration, the use of coal, and severely damage farming: more fiercely than any other country in the world … and just wait for the pain to bite.