It could have been a reading for a part in King Lear. Charles Ramson Jr. was on it. He had the right lilt, the impressive cadence, the stylish swag and the requisite bluster.
And, he had props too.
He had a podium, a microphone and the stage for the people’s discourse, the floor of Parliament. And he bellowed and banged and even resorted to delivering some of his lyrics in that musical style that appeals mostly to youth of a specific ethnicity.
He literally acted the part he was sent to parliament to play.
But after his lines were read and Charles retreated behind the curtain, all we were left with was hollow echo of an actor who was better at delivering his lines than he was at facts.
What Charles has not dissected is the empirical evidence. What he has confirmed is that the there is a fallacy of function that exists amongst those who allege governance.
For, what does budgeting of GYD 535 Million and 961 Million mean if it is never assigned to provide the services the amounts were budgeted for?
I’m not sure that rambunctious Charles is aware that there is an effect side to the equation; so that if the cause is to improve the lot of the youth by assigning millions to programs for them, then the effect must be the improved lot of the youth.
According to a Caribbean Development bank study, Stabroek News May 22nd 2015, unemployment amongst youth in Guyana – the age group of 15 -24 – hovers around 40%, and has been there for the tenure of Ramson’s party, in spite of the millions that were, supposedly, working to reduce unemployment, to provide job skills.
Charles may want to argue that the funds were spent to improve work force innovation; that youth unemployment is part of the broader picture of a global economic crisis and that, in as much as his party has created programs to help the youth, jobs are just not there.
But that’s cogent and coherent and would infer that Charles was actually thinking about his maiden speech to Parliament, not just reciting the rabid rhetoric synonymous with his ideology with the requisite theatrics.
For if he were thinking, he would know that assigning millions to a program that failed repeatedly, consecutively and consistently to yield fruit was poor governance; but that takes us to the other ‘what if’; whether there were really programs at all, where are the alumni from these programs to verify curricula; was there some sort of oversight to determine the viability of assigning funds to repeat failure instead of redirecting them where they would have been better used…clear, logical, plausible.
And, if he were still thinking, he would have refrained from touting his youth as enough portfolio to be a youth Minister. For, a Youth Minister is one who is duly qualified to head a department that serves youth, comes with the knowledge and experience to analyze the needs of the Ministry and to lead it successfully towards its goals.
Charles, on the other hand, is a Youthful Minister, which he and his party are interchanging with the designation, Youth Minister; but that’s a whole other matter and not for this discussion.
In the end, though, Charles went to Parliament. He got the opportunity to stand on the people’s platform and sell his bill goods.
What Charles and his party are still reconciling with is that this is a buyer’s market.