Friday, November 18, 2022

Chaos as a governing principle

We have so many things that can kill us in this country. Being in this country you are a candidate for death. [Audience laughs] And because they're so many things competing for death, there's nothing wrong in adding GMO to that list. That is why we have deliberately decided to allow GMOs into this country. - Moses Kuria

The long tail of the Moism that was nurtured over twenty-four years continues to affect us in deeply unsettling and inhumane ways. Many praise the ten years of Kibakinomics and completely ignore the fact that despite performance contracting, in reality, Mr Kibaki did little to reverse the ill effects of a hollowed-out public service. Mr Kibaki's successor simply chose to throw good money after bad and when that didn't work, hand over the whole kit and caboodle to the army to sort out. It didn't work either. Mr Kuria is the personification of thirty-four years of civil service sabotage by presidents, parliamentarians, ministers of government and sundry ne'er-do-wells with such deeply embedded conflicts of interest it is a wonder they were able to achieve anything at all.

There is nothing humorous about admitting that the government you serve, and have served for a decade, has failed in its mandate to protect its peoples. There is no humour in admitting that regardless of the scientific question marks, the government you now serve intends to move forward with the introduction of genetic technologies whose benefits remain wholly unexplored, and the research into its negative effects are buried in layers of global money interests. But that is where we are today.

Governing is not easy. You must make life-or-death decisions on dozens of sensitive matters with little current information or resources, and in the face of external risks that you can neither see nor predict, all the while ensuring that the lights stay on and the masses don't set your house on fire. In order to make the best decisions possible in the circumstances, you need a plan. Such a plan must be based on a policy that analyses the issues, identifies the people capable of implementing the policy, mobilising the money needed for it, and your own skills in persuading your rivals and enemies to go along with the plan. You cannot make good decisions if all you're doing is flying by the seat of your pants, making reckless statements on the fly, and inviting ridicule and contempt while at it. You may posses the intellectual heft of an Einstein, but it is meaningless if that intellect is tethered to an overweening narcissistic desire to PWN your rivals.

President Moi predicted that Kanu would reign for a hundred years. He couldn't have known that Kanu, the political party, would exist only as a caricature or that Kanuism and Maoism would replace it. The core elements of Moist and Kanuism included cults of personality, self-interest over public interest, incompetence camouflaged by cruelty and sarcasm, wastage of public resources in pursuit of white elephants, and an inability to accept that one may not know enough about any subject matter. It is still early days with the new regime, but the signs don't point in an encouraging direction. Right from the moment a declaration on the shamba system was made, it has been one flip-flopping policy announcement after another.

Is chaos their intended objective?

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