Tuesday 31 May 2005

In office but not in power

In Office and losing credibility
One would not cast oneself as a political observer of any note but at times things do become too obvious to be ignored after a while.
It is generally thought that politicians in a final term are lame-duck politicians in that there is nothing to fight for but the confirming of ones legacy for the sake of posterity.
That is the view that prevailed at the re-election of George W. Bush, however the radical ideas and appointments that have ensued show that there is going to be a bit of moving and shaking before he calls off.
The same has already been said of Tony Blair of the United Kingdom who was re-elected last month for a third term albeit with a reduced majority, the parliamentary plan does look radical and full, but having said he would not serve the full term, we should expect he would be off in a few years.
Another European leader also appears to fit into the second term lame-duck scenario having had a squabbling first term that lasted just 9 months. Well, some people view that 9-month period as the gestation that has given birth to the least imaginative and innovative government in recent history.
That said, most of the radical activity that proceeds out this office has centred around burnishing his image for every criticism or parody made of him in the courts. For a politician, this is the thinnest-skinned ever encountered.
Today, offers the opportunity to pass severe judgement on the ideas, policies, demeanour and vision of this cabinet. The European Constitution referendum debate been hijacked by both the extreme and the indifference who have excited the concerned has left the government of the day cack-handed and stuttering about the real benefits of being in Europe.
Only arrogance and indifference can explain why the coalition that makes up the government has failed to look available and present in the campaign for the advancement of Europe.
In more common parlance, they are just completely clueless; in the world we live in, being clueless could as well be a complement.
Even now, the citizenry might just be secretly hoping that Harry Potter who bears a striking resemblance to our protagonist was the Prime Minister for the fact that he is smart, agile, bold and resourceful. The real alter ego just seems to have his wand pointed the other way and his broom flying backwards.
Two exchanges in the British Parliament to the Prime Minister of that time in the early 1990s typify the circumstances in which we find ourselves in the Netherlands.
The non-Midas touch of the Prime Minister here leaves us in dire need of a new and representative government and even though they are in office, they are definitely not in power. Alas!