by Keith Williams
When you read and digest the revolutionary narrative that emerge from George Orwell’s porcine animal farm characters, and juxtapose that with what comes out of the PPPC today and over the past two decades, the hairs on your skin tend to stand up because of the symmetry, almost word for word, context by context, that exist between the two. I am presenting selective passages in the form of a literary montage, with the character and other references adapted to reflect the current source of these narratives, and the era in which they take place, for your entertainment, and maybe some serious contemplation
A pre-1992 PPPC Narrative
“…remember, comrades, your resolution must never falter. No argument must lead you astray. Never listen when they tell you that the opposition Constituents and PPPC constituents have a common interest, that the prosperity of the one is the prosperity of the other. It is all lies. They serve the interests of no creature except themselves. And among us in and of the PPPC let there be perfect unity, perfect comradeship in the struggle. All members and supporters of opposition are enemies. All members and supporters of the PPPC are comrades.”
After 1992 PPPC Narrative:
“….Comrades!” You do not imagine, I hope, that we in the PPPC leadership are doing this in a spirit of selfishness and privilege? Many of us actually dislike wealth and all of its trappings. Our sole object in taking these things is to preserve our standing and status as your leaders. Money and Property (this has been proved by Science, comrades) are absolutely necessary to the well-being of PPPC Leaders. We are brainworkers. The whole management and organisation of this Country depend on us. Day and night we are watching over your welfare. It is for YOUR sake that we acquire money and property. Do you know what would happen if we leaders failed in our duty? Burnham would come back! …Surely, comrades,” cried the PPPCspeaker from the podium almost pleadingly, skipping from side to side and wagging his fingers at the crowd, “surely there is no one among you who wants to see Burnham come back?……”
Reality Reveals Damning Evidence
YEARS passed. The election cycles came and went, the lives of the people of Guyana fled by. A time came when there was no one who seem to remember the old days before the Rebellion, except for a few courageous critics, a Lincoln Lewis, a David Hinds, a Freddie Kissoon, a Brathwaite, and a number of people who might share ethnicity with the PPPC leaders but did not agree with them.
…the luxuries of which the PPPC leaders had once taught the people to dream, the homes with electric light and flowing water, and the freedom of the press, speech and assembly were no longer talked about. The PPP in their actions now denounced such ideas as contrary to the spirit of Communism. The truest happiness, they implied, resided in working hard by the masses and living frugally.
Somehow it seemed as though the Country had grown richer without making the people themselves any richer-except, of course, for the PPPC leaders and its sycophants and acolytes. Perhaps this was partly because there were not so many of them. It was not that these creatures did not work, after their fashion of course. They were never tired of explaining that they were engaged in endless work, in the supervision and organization of the economy, of education…. For example, political opinion leaders and shapers explained to the people that the PPPC leaders had to expend enormous energy every day upon mysterious things called “files,” “reports,” “minutes,” and “memoranda.”…
As for the rest of the Country, their life, so far as they knew, was as it had always been. They were generally hungry, they lived like crap, they drank from polluted water from the taps, they labored in the fields; in offices, in factories, in the bush, the overwhelming majority barely able to eke out an existence on a daily basis. During rainy season they they were troubled by floods and attendant stinking mud and refuse and diseases, and during the dry season stifling heat, and flies, and rats, and roaches. Sometimes the older ones among them racked their dim memories and tried to determine whether before and in the early days of the Rebellion, if things had been better or worse than now….
Two decades and several election cycles after… the terrifying vision of what the nation had devolved into began seeping into the consciousness of the population….the people began looking at and examining things in the Country. Then they saw what Kissoon, Lincoln Lewis, Barrington Brathwaite, et al, had been seeing and denouncing all along.
It was the PPPC leaders and their sycophants involved in all of the things they had condemned as occurring under the PNC and Forbes Burnham, their constructed replica of George Orwell’s farmer. The PPPC monopolizing and using the national media for its exclusive propaganda purposes. The PPPC leadership using Law Enforcement and the Army to go after, and abuse and persecute their political opponents. The PPPC nefarious association with criminal vigilante gangs under the generalship of two politically affiliated leaders that sought out, kidnapped, and permanently deprived hundreds of men they proclaimed to be criminal suspects of their citizenship entitlement to due process and the presumption of innocence. The PPPC controlling the Judiciary, practicing nepotism, marginalizing and discriminating against population segments, the PPPC being silent and recalcitrant on Law Enforcement and Army torture of so called suspects, taking no action against exposed larceny, embezzlement and other fraudulent practices at state institutions, laissez faire attitudes to concerns about narcotic trafficking and trafficking in persons and a host of other management perversions.
A terrifying sense of hopelessness began to inundate the Population. They huddled together exchanging glances at the eruption of every new and recurring venality, afraid to give voice to that of which they had become gradually aware and frighteningly conscious. The people watched as long lines of PPPC leaders and sycophants gathered in clubs, and bars, in places of entertainment. It was as though their world had been turned upside-down. … And throughout all of this, there was this tremendous display of triumphalism, and the bellowing in unison of a narrative that animatedly proclaimed….”opposition bad, PPPC good, opposition bad, PPPC good”
The message was unequivocally transparent in its delivery. All Guyanese Are Equal but some Guyanese are more equal than others!!! The people then thankfully stood together and demanded change. The people will continue to work together to achieve that change. The people will not allow the PPPC to take them back to corruption, killings, racism and under-development.