Murdering one’s neighbours after elections; additional observations

Posted in Africa, arms, Corruption, democracy, hillary clinton, Kenya, Mali, murder, Obama by Deputy city editor on January 8, 2008

In Britain, elections are rigged, votes are meaningless, there is corruption (often involving arms deals) at the very top, yet the popular consensus is do not grumble, and get on with the business of making money.  Voting be stuffed!

When the outcome of the fraudulent election is announced and is as predicted distasteful, or ridiculous, we certainly do not murder our neighbours, or at least not in any number, as has recently been the case in Africa. Why not?

I am not sure the inhibition of kinetic street outcomes is that durable, in a society (our own) where the streets have become meaner and the population of disenfranchised grows larger and angrier.

So it is easy to see civil society spinning out of control. It would start with the immediate neighbors. One has nothing especially against them. They are a decent couple, but they are in the way. They ruin the view.

So why not hack them to death and reduce their bungalow to the ground? I merely ask the question.

Obviously this is the basest and most offensive fantasy but how improbable?

I am not sure that we in the so-called civilised countries are so incapable of violence as our African cousins, even if we have recently been out of the habit. Nor that we are innocent in the African slaughters. Many of the Kenya’s troubles can be laid at Britain’s dorstep, including the corruption of the political class not to forget a sordid colonial history.

Perhaps as the opportunity to prosper becomes reduced, as skills are proletarianised or exported, the defects in our own so-called democracy will provoke murderous expressions by the disenfranchised.


Updated: I thought Obama would probably sweep all before him even if I reserved the right not to hope for too much. Maybe he might, still – but it was not to be in New Hapshire. His proposition is more positive and attractive than the others. It also seems authentic. Perhaps American democracy is still about to redeem itself. Perhaps that is too much to hope for. For the moment, Obama offers a choice of hope and change versus fear and hate.


My hairdresser points out that Obama would not be America’s first black president which has already had two with the post currently occupied by Wayne Palmer, played by the actor DB Woodside, above, on the Fox drama 24. I do not watch this but I am told it is very popular hence Americans are not just ready for a black president they are used to the idea.


Fox News has been told to lay off Obama. This instruction can only have come from the wily old fox himself. This means that KRM and his friends realise that Obama might well be the next president. It will be essential for Rupert that he be on the side of the winner. Fox is still its wretched self on everything else. Coverage of the Hormuz straight was directly from the Gulk of Tonkin tradition of craven, loyalist journalism. Fox has however decided (at this stage at least) not to get on the wrong side of the Obama phenomenon.


Recommended ++ : the movie Bamako now available on DVD. Incredible portrait of a courtyard in Mali’s capital where Africa itself is on trial. In French with optional English subtitles.


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