The Malta Independent
As a nation we specialise in the tendency to indulge in pleasant fantasies in order to escape unpleasant realities.
We pride ourselves in having a fully functional democracy and pretend not to notice that the glaring democratic deficiencies which rule our everyday life.
Without any legislation controlling political party funding and political donations I cannot as a citizen accept that many of the government decision are uninfluenced by the genorisity shown by the business sector to add oil to the machinery of the party in government. So while at Super One we hardly afford an occassional press advert Net TV with much lower audiences and ratings afford regular advertising and billboard exposure.` While the government goes through the motions of public tenders, these tenders are cancelled and re-issued quite liberally when results are not quite in line with designed plans.
While conservatives in government find unreserved support from influential media and from business constituted bodies these same opinion shapers used to fault a Labour government endlessly even for insignificant or imaginary slips.
We pretend that it is quite normal for ministers to earn from their political post a fraction of what some of them used to earn in private practice.
Even strange court or justice decisions remain unchallenged by public opinion. Clear cases of politically motivated presidential pardons which endows` the executive the unearned right to delineate politically who could walk away free from punishment for admitted serious criminal offences from those who have to waste their youth waiting for delayed justice in a lonely prison cell,` remain unchallenged. Even the court`s reluctance to give protection to` defenseless citizens no longer pricks the national conscience. Whilst` the beneficiary of the presidential pardon continues to collect serious criminal offences with monotonous regularity` not one thought is spared for two young persons wasting their life in prison facing charges whose only corroboration is that of the said beneficiary.
Whilst in other countries the student corps` acts as a stimulant to the national conscience protesting against legal and social injustices, in Malta our students would only complain if their material interest through their stipend is in any way questioned. The same national political divisions are practiced to perfection at our Junior College and University through pseudo non-political student organisations. We have` corrupted with money on the streets of Paceville and Bugibba the tender conscience of our youth.
What sort of quality of life have we given to our family units who have to spend edgy sleepless weekend nights waiting for their youths to arrive home without material damage`
Are the generous Xmas charitable collections a feeble attempt to wash our conscience from` the lethargy which make us accept these injustices without guilt throughout the year. What social earthquake can induce us to shake off this deep-rooted escapism`
Friday, 12 January 2001
The Malta Independent