IN THE LAST 24 hours, Prime Minister Tillman Thomas sought to give his political stupidity some cloak of honor by framing the train wreck that is now the National Democratic Congress into some virtuous ideological battle.
“I fight them (leftist) already and I will fight time again,” he told a party meeting on Sunday.
Many took it to mean that he was suggesting that his party was split among ideological lines.
But he sought to “clarify” to reporters, before Glen Noel awkwardly hauled him away with his own stern declaration – you ain’t answering more questions – while he was speaking about the leftist in society.
(I’ll give Glen his props; other than doing it too inelegantly, he had a right to break up that embarrassment and send his boss on the way as some errant school boy who did not learn his lines right).
Other than the fact that in the PM’s utterances, the phrase sounded so seventyish, the thinking almost feels much further back. 1838 any one?
But who are those leftists in society that are somehow a threat to, well – his power?
What absolute none-sense when all his action is leading to the surrender of power to Keith Mitchell, the man who his one-time “leftist” party members once called a CIA agent?
So Doc you are left of Tillo now?
Now can it get more confusing than this?
The last time I spoke to Glen Noel one-on-one, he assured me he is a progressive. So too has Vincent Roberts.
Let me call out a few of my real ‘brethrens’ whose “progressive politics and ideas” I have always respected.
Other than Glen and Vince, Lingham Samuel are you part of this brigade that “fighting the leftists too?
Et tu Faye Thompson?
Comrade Naz. What say you? Don’t let them give you this record without a fight– the only man in Grenada to be a member of the most ultra-leftist junta in Caribbean history – and now – well let me use another very 70-s phrase – after Tillman’s own admission – the most reactionary government since independence.
Sister Ann, what are they doing to that legacy of advocacy and struggle you created that came straight from the progressive play book that I will personally be eternally grateful for?
Chris DeRiggs? Well they say you were a leftish. But, since the days of the NYO, I was never convinced. But I took them at their word.
Stephen Fletcher, my old IFE partner. So, all these political debates under that big tree, while drinking juice from Homemade Bakery have come to nothing? (Boy maybe you lime with Willie for too long).
Captain Belfon – my old TFG boss that insisted I attend political education class when I declared it a waste of time?
You part of the gang that fighting them leftish too?
They say this is a new world order – but it is a new world of confused men.
I mean George Worme and Ray Roberts will be happy as the only two Gairyites left in Grenada. (I am just being facetious here).
But tell me something. Seriously!
So Alleyne Walker is a leftist now? Alleyne Walker?
Glynis Roberts is a leftist too?
And mean, I guess we can say that about the old captain, with some fairness. Give Pedro the mantle if we want to stick with that old 70s label. He ain’t bright enough like “all you” to run from it.
I guess you can loosely pull in Quarless in that too. He was an old militia.
You know I am writing this and I am laughing. The joke is on all of us. All of us Grenada!
But give it to Tillo. He smart!
Pedro, Naz, Lingham, Vincent, Glen, Ann, Faye, Stephen, Chris, Turkey – all the self-declared proponents of progressive politics – he catch all of all you.
So you all were convinced that the man had reconciled – and he had forgiven eh?
He never forget all you!
Now, he is trying to catch Grenada with some divide-and-rule ideological blather.
I guess if you can’t sell them hope, try to sell them fear.
But is anybody buying?
The problem is that a whole generation has blossomed since – and while the old leftists previously mentioned can be denigrated to the ranks of graying old men, their children’s friends don’t have our scars – and don’t fear the future.
In the Prime Minister’s quest for political relevancy, he sadly can’t articulate a bold idea about the future, so he falls back to an old playbook that is proverbially stored in a library somewhere.
The thing Tillo, with the internet at their fingertips – the typical Grenadian voter doesn’t go to the library from where you took that playbook anymore.
It’s like trying to sell me a typewriter in this iPad era. (I must confess that’s a loaded line for these who have heard the joke).
You talk about out of touch?
Even all Tillo’s old jailhouse partners aren’t buying his resurrected absolutism. Ask Lloyd Noel. Ask KB. Ask Leslie Pierre.
So you mean I live to see the day when Leslie Pierre supports more progressive ideas than you all?
Francis Alexis, his old GDM (Grenada Democratic Movement) partner has moved on and can now even count Ralph Gonsalves among his closest friends.
I guess, with mortgage to pay – some with even two – you all have no choice but to go along, with this new declaration.
Or maybe – genuinely – you have been struck on the road to Damascus – and you are a convert to heartless, ungrateful politics that only speaks to selfishness that leaves all your foot soldiers behind.
I understand modern day economic realities. Doh feel no way.
But you all can’t call me opportunists any more with a straight face.
Look how it turned out nah? I am the only leftist standing, (well unless Chess decides to join me.)
SO wait nah? Tillo, so it’s me you fighting?
(PS: Thanks to my father, who for a standard four graduate had a progressive outlook without even being well read; Leslie Pierre another standard four giant who tested my ideas against his ideas every week at the Grenadian Voice; George Brizan, who as a boy told me always question the system and never be afraid to be bold; to Fr Martin, for all the great years in Munich and introducing me to the ideals of Michael Manley; to Loftus McMillan for making me understand commitment to the community; and my big brother Fred Mark for bringing back all those books from Canada, so as a seven year old I was reading Walter Rodney, Eric Williams and Fidel Castro instead of the Hardy Boys and Perry Mason. You see what you all caused?).