Friday, May 24, 2013

Commentary: WHO SHOT KR?

Forgive me for borrowing from the 80s TV soap, Dallas, that ended a season with the shooting of its hero-villain J.R.Ewing, leaving everyone to ask WHO SHOT JR? It turned out that the rich and famous oilman lived to scheme another day.

But what about Keith Rowley? Who shot KR? 
It's obvious that someone whom the opposition leader trusted misled him into believing that he had the evidence to topple the government, using the PNM tactic of bringing down the leader so all would fall down. 

Remember Patrick Manning boasted about that style and he used it effectively to bring down the two governments that got in the way of the PNM's 'divine right' to rule Trinidad and Tobago.

If they could get Kamla and Anand in one shot then it would be game over. But whoever handed Rowley the "evidence" was either stupid or deliberately setting up Rowley. The latter seems to be the case and it might have worked.

Rowley ended up with political egg all over his face. What was even worse than the roasting he got from the powerful People's Partnership team is his admission that that he had kept his big email expose a secret, not even telling his caucus. So PNM members were unprepared and unable to present any meaningful argument to support the opposition motion of no confidence.

A symbolic political slap in the face came from two of his own. Colm Imbert conveniently arranged leave to go to London from where he said he didn't know about the emails. And Amery Browne openly defied his leader by wearing his trademark PNM tie, which Rowley had fought so hard to banish. 

What was Browne's message? Remember these two had crossed political swords with Rowley before. Is one of them looking to take Rowley's job? (Not Imbert. He had said he was too white and too educated to be accepted)

No opposition goes into such a debate expecting to win. The purpose is to inflict serious injury to the government. In this case Rowley shot himself and made it worse by the walkout when Kamla rose to speak. The result was that no opposition member was in the House to vote or to hear that their leader will be hauled before the Privileges Committee for contempt.

So instead of hurting the government, the record will show a unanimous rejection of the opposition motion and no incriminating evidence of any wrongdoing since Rowley and his team were unable to present a strong defence of what Rowley himself admitted might have been bogus emails. (The privilege matter is academic because Parliament would be prorogued in three weeks).

Rowley's comeback position was this: "Suppose the contents of one or two is true? Suppose one of them is right?" he asked, trying to keep up a defence in the face of defeat.

How can a responsible opposition leader, a prime minister in waiting, be so politically naive to take such weak material to Parliament without even making an attempt to authenticate it and then admit that perhaps it was all a fake? And even worse, he admitted that he kept it for six months, refused to take it to the police and handed it instead to the president. His stupidity implicated the head of state in his scheme.

All this is possible only because he trusted his "whistleblower" so much that he convinced himself that all he had to do was go to Parliament with his "evidence" and like Humpty Dumpty, Kamla would fall. 

Instead it seems like he is the one now perched on the wall and it is he who might have a great fall. And could it be that this was the intention of the whistleblower all along?

I wonder what the movers and shakers inside the PNM are doing right now. They cannot be amused with such a poor showing from their leader. Or are they having the last laugh? Could it be that they fed Rowley's "deep throat" the material for a set up? Is there a leader in waiting? Can Patrick Manning finally get his revenge? 

Could all this drama have really been about how to shoot KR? And now we are left to ask WHO SHOT KR? And whether he would live to fight another day. 

This drama is just starting.

Amery Browne sees himself as a potential leader. Penny Beckles is talking about the need for leadership and Manning is watching and waiting for 2014 when PNM members would choose their leader in a one-member, one-vote election. 

For some PNMites the party is still great and they are expecting to prevail. They have failed so see that Trinidad and Tobago has grown up and moved into the 21st century and unless they catch up to reality they would have to remain in the wilderness for generations until those who have sinned are no more.

By then I won't be here to write about it!

Jai Parasram

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Jai & Sero

Jai & Sero

Our family at home in Toronto 2008

Our family at home in Toronto 2008
Amit, Heather, Fuzz, Aj, Jiv, Shiva, Rampa, Sero, Jai