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Let's Get Some Yankee Style

By Daily Graphic

A bloke goes and buys himself a pair of jeans and when he wears them he looks incredibly flamboyant. Another fellow seeing this goes off quickly and buys himself the very same type of jeans, see? He disappears into a dressing room and re-emerges in the jeans, looking like an ageing circus baboon in sack cloth.##m:[Read more]##

Wondering what might be the matter with him, the fellow goes to the first bloke to seek an explanation. The bloke offers him free counsel in a few words: Go get some style!

 

Get some style? What does that mean? Where can a bloke get some style, Jomo? Ask the Americans.

In my capacity as a child of God with a right to try and influence by power of my mind and spirit, how this planet keeps spinning around and hurtling through space, I offered up a passionate prayer to God on Tuesday morning:

Please Lord, our continent wants a man of African decent in the White House for a change, so Lord, do not let Yankee TV mess up the results of the US election and cause total confusion this time round.

Surely you recall what happened in US elections in 2000: First Television networks, basing their calculation on the almighty Florida vote, announce to the world that Al Gore has won the election.

 

Next they retract their announcement and inform the world that it is Bush who has won.

Gore calls Bush on the phone, concedes defeat and congratulates George.

 

Then Holy Moses, the TV networks retract the Bush victory too! Gore on learning of this, promptly retracts his acceptance of defeat.

 

Please do not cause any trouble for me by repeating this anywhere, but some Ghanaians asked at the time whether the Yankees were of Fanti ancestry or something.

This country would probably have gone up in huge tongues of flame and consumed herself, if the comic but also potentially dangerous scenarios which played out in the US elections in 2000 had occurred here.

Hours before last Tuesday's  election, journalist Janet Daley wrote in the Telegraph that “In one of those bizarre jokes that history sometimes plays, the United States is apparently about to choose as president the most inexperienced, untried and virtually unknowable (because there is so little to know) candidate who has ever run for that office.”

She added that the Americans were about to choose such a man “at a time of unquantifiable international risk and unprecedented economic instability— a candidate who responded to the recent banking collapse by calling every expert he could find on the phone to ask them what he should say.”

Poor Janet. Obama is in the White House and we Africans are extremely delighted that with time and patience, the forces that drive the pace and path of destinies, have finally re-arranged the representative colours of the races for harmony in the multi-racial diversity of America.

A Blackman in the White House! Fantastic, Jomo. Absolutely fantastic. One fellow told me on Wednesday morning that he wished the man were as coal- black as Dompreh, the charcoal seller, or Ayamga, the fitter.

 

I advised him to be happy, because the man is the closest Africans in America come these days.

Once the results were declared the America rallied as one behind the victor. True unity and nationalism were so much in evidence. Oh, Boy!

I wonder how we could ever manage that here when people and political groups have built such tall steel walls of exclusion between them and the “them' and 'us” mentality appears so irreversibly entrenched, with menacing claws and tentacles reaching into public services, industry, businesses and the professions!

I have never liked some aspects of US foreign policy. Not with all the heavy boot-stomping, gung-ho meddling of the US in the affairs of other nations, but the Yankees remain several streets up ahead when it comes to political organisation and the conduct of elections.

They too encounter problems in the conduct of elections alright, but they always manage to pull off the delicate process without cracked skulls, broken bones and spilled blood.

A total of 169 million registered voters and a near-100 per cent voter turnout and these guys still manage to pull it off without a hitch and declare the results within 24 hours. So what is up with us, buddy?

I blundered into a small election campaign rally the other day. On the edge of the crowd at the rally two fellows were arguing about nothing if you see what I mean.

 

 One bloke with apparently itchy fists screams into the face of the other:    “What?” The other bloke too says: “What?”

“What?”

“What?”

“What?!”

“What?!!”

“I said what?!”

“And so did I!!”

“I say piss off!”

“You too f…k off!”

Some times, the agents of chaos are not these so-called foot soldiers who may be pardoned on grounds of mis-education about politics and elections, the over exuberance of youth and their manipulation by powerful forces.

Some adults who want political authority  seem neither capable of respect for authority and discipline nor able to teach young followers respect for authority.

Heavy fists flew millimetres away from the face of the Vice-President of the republic at a campaign rally the other day, right on a VIP dais! A former minister of state and serving legislator who wants to contest his constituency's parliamentary elections again had a beef:

Some people hated his guts like hell and were trying to put obstacles in the way of his campaign and they included the Vice –President.

 

He on his part, contrived to hate them back in good or greater measure. He addresses the rally and resumes his seat without so much as acknowledging the presence of the Vice-President.

The veep and some party men rebuke him and he gets into fisticuffs with an aide of the vice-president on the VIP dais.

 

Is that the style of the Yankees we are quick to applaud and claim to copy?

It is only such totally unexpected incidents which sometimes throw up the ugly and volatile elements of human pride, selfish personal ambition and other nasty temperamental odds and ends hiding deep in the recesses of the hearts of many people seeking power.

Thus their motives for the pursuit of power are exposed and we can discern the reasons for the ever present threat of electoral violence!

 

Yes sir, we do need to get a brand new political style.

With George Sydney Abugri