Is 'the plan' working?

Friday, June 08, 2018

Print this page Email A Friend!


Dear Editor,

Against my counsel, last week Police Commissioner Antony Anderson may have taken comfort from the just-recorded dip in murders and the decline overall in major crimes. And, of course, it's right for him to do so. The dip could be an early sign, however modest, of a positive trend that would also commend his Administration.

What is interesting, however, about this 'comfort-taking' is what it reveals about Government's thinking — the central plank of its plan. Yes, the plan that Prime Minister Andrew Holness has over and over said they have. It's simple, my dear Watson, a famous fictitious detective would to say, as he pointed out an obvious fact staring his assistant in the face — and ours.

As a colleague described it to me recently, it's a “numbers game”. The plan is community by community, one police division at a time, parish by parish. That's what Holness identified as the plan. That's how the murder numbers will come down from four a day to three to two, to even one a day, from 60 per 100,000 of population to 50 or even 20. That it will take 10 years or more is inconsequential.

From the Government's viewpoint the important thing is that Jamaican people will accept it. And, indeed, they will, as long as other good things keep happening — road repair and building, new markets, more tourists, big festivals, and conventions. Acceptance more crucially rests on the psychological impact of rolling out zones of special operations and states of emergency, one at a time.

This answers popular demand for tough action, even military coup, because our two political parties have themselves created this situation by their unconscionable, decades-long not caring enough to decisively tackle the terrible killing of so many, especially of the young.

No matter, then, people's suffering — no matter major loss to the economy, less to spend on the poor, and bad national reputation. What really matters is the next election. As the politically nurtured cycle of hurt, festering from delayed remedy and feeding desire for harsh action wheels around again to more hurt, delayed medicine, and dismay with democracy, this Government will ride a sullen wave of support for the gradualist approach. Sullen because people just see no alternative.

So forget the talk about 'national priority'; societal consensus; mobilisation of State, private sector and civil society resources; and an assault on community deprivation. Too risky, quite unnecessary, compared with the plan playing out now. A continued and forever renewed hold on political power is always what really matters. That's the indisputable pathetic history of our two political parties.

Horace Levy

halpeace.levy78@gmail.com

ADVERTISEMENT




POST A COMMENT

HOUSE RULES

1. We welcome reader comments on the top stories of the day. Some comments may be republished on the website or in the newspaper � email addresses will not be published.

2. Please understand that comments are moderated and it is not always possible to publish all that have been submitted. We will, however, try to publish comments that are representative of all received.

3. We ask that comments are civil and free of libellous or hateful material. Also please stick to the topic under discussion.

4. Please do not write in block capitals since this makes your comment hard to read.

5. Please don't use the comments to advertise. However, our advertising department can be more than accommodating if emailed: advertising@jamaicaobserver.com.

6. If readers wish to report offensive comments, suggest a correction or share a story then please email: community@jamaicaobserver.com.

7. Lastly, read our Terms and Conditions and Privacy Policy



comments powered by Disqus
ADVERTISEMENT

Poll

ADVERTISEMENT
ADVERTISEMENT

Today's Cartoon

Click image to view full size editorial cartoon
ADVERTISEMENT