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Sunday, June 04, 2017

How To Spot Empty Campaign Promises

In the coming days, especially as we approach August, we will be inundated with politicians each seeking our endorsement and more importantly our vote. We will be encouraged, harangued and shamed into exercising our democratic right to wake up incredibly early, endure frustratingly long queues in order to mark a bunch of ballots and toss them into a bin.

But what exactly will we be voting for? What should we be looking for in this campaign period? Ideally it should be a choice between competing ideas about how Kenya should be run. However, our politics has not exactly been a crucible where clear thought is forged and many times it is reduced to something of a piñata breaking challenge as we blindly strike out hoping to break loose some promises of “goodies” to come.

To try and infuse some sanity into this charade, and to separate sophistry from sophistication, here’s a short list of six things we should remember when it comes to whacking that piñata.

Plans trump promises and manifestos are not plans
They are little more than public declarations of policies and aims. A manifesto may say -to pick a completely random example- that a political coalition will deliver laptops to every primary school within 100 days of candidates taking office. This is not a plan. A plan would say how said laptops would be procured, how much they would cost, where the money would come from, etc. Basically, a plan would prove that the candidate and his team have thought through what’s in their manifesto.

There are no silver bullets
Anyone who tells you they will pay for their election promises by stopping corruption or recovering previously stolen loot, and cannot tell you how they will stop said corruption or recover said stolen loot, or even how much they expect to raise by stopping corruption of recovering stolen loot within a specific time frame, does not have a plan. Ditto for tales about paying with money to be raised by  cancelling waivers of coffee debts and other similarly fanciful and vague policy notions. Demand specifics. Take anything they tell you with a healthy pinch of salt.

Integrity is not enough 
Similarly, anyone who tells you to vote for them simply because they have integrity but have no concrete plan for delivering on their visions is hoodwinking you. Integrity is important, but no substitute for thinking. Also remember the lessons of the 2002 election when we voted in the cream of civil society and religious leaders -people with proven records of integrity. It did not take long for them to turn. Integrity does not come with a guarantee.

Everybody has a record we can interrogate
Many Kenyan politicians like to pretend that they represent a clean break for the past. In doing so, they also like to disavow their own past and any responsibility for it. Do not be cheated that just because some candidates have never been MCAs or Senators or Governors or MPs or Presidents, they get a free pass. All their prior actions and statements in previous capacities, whether in public or private spheres, are relevant to assessing their suitability for the offices they are vying for.

The election is not just about what candidates want to do
Elected politicians like to think of themselves as “leaders”, but they are really representatives whose job is not to lord it over you but rather to speak on your behalf. Remember Alexandre Auguste Ledru-Rollin, who during the French Revolution is said to have declared: "There go the people. I must follow them, for I am their leader." Elections should be about what you want and what matters to you. So, what issues would you like to see the government address? How do you want your taxes put to work? What do you see as priorities for the next administration? Look for candidates who reflect that and who can give you solid plans not wooly promises.

It does not end on election day
There will be much hype about the need to vote and some will even suggest that if you do not vote, you should not complain. Pay them no heed. Voting is just one, and not even the most important, aspect of participation in a democracy. Elections matter most to politicians since that how they get their jobs and access power. What should matter most to the electorate is what the politicians do with that power in the period in-between elections. Your continued participation after the elections, the ability to hold winners to account as well as contribute to and shape the decisions that affect your life and the lives of your family -this is the stuff of democracy. Not merely standing in line and casting a ballot at election time. So, beware any candidate who has at some point suggested that if you were unhappy with the way office-holders behaved or with the policies they implemented, you must wait for the next elections to do anything about it.

3 comments:

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MICHELE CALZOLARI BANCA IGEA said...

SEMPRE SBORRATISSIMO IN CULO: RICCARDO BARRAI! E DENTRO L'UNIVERSITY OF READING! DAVANTI A TUTTI!
http://jenkins-ci.361315.n4.nabble.com/PRENDE-CAZZI-IN-CULO-RICCARDO-BARRAI-ALL-UNIVERSITY-OF-READING-RICCARDO-BARRAI-E-UN-PERVERSO-OMOSESS-td4896813.html
https://uk.linkedin.com/in/riccardo-barrai-46840512b
1
RICCARDO BARRAI E' ORMAI UN OMOSESSUALE DI TIPO DEPRAVATISSIMO! NATO A MILANO IL 26.11.1996! D'ALTRONDE..DA SEMPRE VENNE SODOMIZZATO DAL BASTARDO PEDOFILO PADRE PAOLO BARRAI! MERDACCIA CRIMINALISSIMA! DA RINCHIUDERE IN GALERA PER SEMPRE!! SI, E' GIUSTO RIMARCARLO. RICCARDO BARRAI E' ORMAI UN PERSO FEMMINONE! E' DIVENUTO UN OMOSESSUALE DI TIPO PERVERTITISSIMO. MA POTREBBE ANCHE ESSERE COMPRESO: FIN DALLA NASCITA VENNE SODOMIZZATO DAL PADRE PEDOFILO PAOLO BARRAI! UN BASTARDISSIMO CRIMINALE!
( DEPRAVED PEDOPHILE RICCARDO BARRAI BORN IN MILAN ON 26.11.1996 MAKES LOT OF HOMOSEXUAL ORGIES INSIDE UNIVERSITY OF READING. A LOT. WE HAVE EVIDENCES BOUT IT. BUT ... IN SOME WAY... HE COULD BE.. EVEN THOUGH JUST BY SOME VIEW POINTS OF VIEW, UNDERSTOOD. HE GOT SODOMIZED, SINCE BORN, BY HIS FATHER: WELL KNOWN PEDOPHILE, ALREADY 3 TIMES IN JAIL, PAOLO BARRAI, BORN IN MILAN ON 28.6.1965. EX CITIBANK. FIRED BADLY BY CITIBANK AND BEEN DONE CONDMENED TO JAIL BY CITIBANK )
A PROPOSITO DEL MALAVITOSISSIMO QUALE...

MICHELE CALZOLARI BANCA IGEA said...

2
E' DAVVERO DA ARRESTARE SUBITO ( PRIMA CHE FACCIA AMMAZZARE ANCORA), IL TERRORISTA NAZISTA ED ASSASSINO, PAOLO BARRAI, NATO A MILANO IL 28.6.1965. NONCHE' MEGA RICICLA SOLDI MAFIOSI E POLITI-C-RIMINALI, OSSIA FRUTTO DI MEGA RUBERIE E MEGA MAZZETTE, RICEVUTE DA LEGA LADRONA E STRAGISTA SPAPPOLA MAGISTRATI, NONCHE', TANTO QUANTO, NAZIFASCISTA DITTATORE E PEDOFILO: SILVIO BERLUSCONI! DICEVO, E' DAVVERO DA ARRESTARE UNA QUARTA VOLTA, E SUBITO, IL TERRORISTA NAZISTA ED ASSASSINO, PAOLO BARRAI. NON PER NIENTE, GIA' STATO IN GALERA 3 VOLTE. OPINIONI TUTTE TERRIFICANTI SU DI LUI! MEGA TRUFFATORE E MEGA RICICLA CASH ASSASSINO VIA CRIMINALISSIMA BLOCKCHAIN INVEST, OLTRE CHE VIA NALISSIMA WORLD MAN OPPORTUNITIES LUGANO, CRIMINALISSIMA WMO SA PANAMA E CRIMINALISSIMA BSI ITALIA SRL DI VIA SOCRATE 26 MILANO! NOTO PEDOFIL-O-MOSESSUALE SODOMIZZA BAMBINI! CACCIATO DA CITIBANK A SBERLE, PER MEGA FRODI CHE LI FACEVA! SBAGLIA SEMPRE IN BORSA! AZZERA I RISPARMI DI CENTINAIA DI PERSONE! FALSO&LADRO&TRUFFATORE! DIFFAMA SUL WEB A FINI NAZIRAZZISTI! FONDATORE DEI NUOVI MEGASSASSINI TERRORISTI DI ESTREMISSIMA DESTRA: "NUOVI NAR"! FONDATORE DEL, PROSSIMAMENTE, DI FREQUENTE, OMICIDA: KU KLUK KLAN PADANO! CONDANNATO AL CARCERE A MILANO ED IN BRASILE ( 8 ANNI E PURE PER PEDERASTIA OMOSESSUALE, RIPETO, PURE PER PEDERASTIA OMOSESSUALE)! MULTATO DA CONSOB 70.000 €! DESTABILIZZA L'ITALIA PER FILO NAZISTI SERVIZI SEGRETI SVIZZERI ( ITALIA, DICEVAMO, DA 30 ANNI, GIUSTISSIMAMENTE, NAZIONE SCHIFATA IN TUTTO IL MONDO, IN QUANTO FASCIOMAFIOSA DITTATURA DI BERLUSCONIA.. NON PER NIENTE, TUTTE LE PIU' GRANDI INDUSTRIE, IN ITALIA DA SECOLI, DALLA TIRANNIASSASSINA DI BERLUSCONIA SON SCAPPATE, VEDI FIAT, PIRELLI, LUXOTTICA, MERLONI E MIGLIAIA E MIGLIAIA DI ALTRE... E CHE SIA CHIARO, PLS, CHE IDDIO BENEDICA I GRANDI PM CHE NON SOPPORTANTO IL CANCRO DEL MONDO INTERO, SILVIO BERLUSCONI, COME HENRY WOODCOCK, ILDA BOCASSINI E CHIUNQUE ALTRO DI QUESTA AMMIREVOLISSIMA CATEGORIA)! FA CRIMINI SU CRIMINI E NAZI-ST-ALKING, SU INTERNET, SU ORDINE DEI PUZZONI CRIMINALISSIM SILVIO BERLUSCONI, PAOLO BERLUSCONI ED UBALDO LIVOLSI DI FININVEST. IL VERME ASSASSINO PAOLO BARRI, E' ANCHE, DA SEMPRE, INNEGGIANTE ALLO SPAPPOLAMENTO DI MAGISTRATI SCOMODI "COME BERLUSCONI GRANDISSIMAMENTE FECE CON FALCONE E BORSELLINO"! PAROLE SUE, DETTE SPESSISSIMO! ORGANIZZANTE OMICIDIO DI DAVID ROSSI DI MONTE PASCHI!
Ho tantissimo da scrivere sul gia' 3 volte finito in galera, accertatissimo pedofilo omosessuale, ladro, truffatore, sempre falso, nazi-st-alker, mandante di omicidi ( spesso, ma non sempre, mascherati da finti incidenti, malori o "suicidate"... come quando fece ammazzare David Rossi di Monte Paschi, ma ne scrivero' in dettagli molto presto), mega ricicla soldi mafiosi e/o politico-criminali (piu' tanto di orrido altro), arrestato gia' 3 volte, Paolo Barrai, nato a Milano il 28.6.1965 e gia' residente a Milano in Via Ippodromo 105! Come presto meglio sottolineeremo, multato dalla Consob ben 70.000 euro!
http://www.consob.it/main/documenti/hide/afflittivi/pec/mercati/2013/d18579.htm
VI SONO TONNELLATE DI ALTRE COSE DA DIRE SU QUANTO SIA BASTARDO EFFERATO CRIMINALE E PEDOFILO PAOLO BARRAI. TROVATE UNA PARTE (CHE PRESTO AMPLIEREMO ALL'INFINITO E PIU')..... QUI:
https://es-la.facebook.com/public/Truffati-Da-Paolo-Barrai