Sep 27, 2019 Editorial
There they are: Boris (that is English isn’t it?) over there at Number 10; next the man, who thinks he trumps all like the ace of diamonds (more like a jack of clubs); then the fellow next door, who introduces thoughts of Christmas (nothing jolly about him for Guyana); and last David Arthur (two kings blending into one).
It is revealing how each one has responded to severe and unrelenting challenges from adversaries, environment, and others offering counsel or bringing still more troubles.
From one place after another in the instances of this selected four, it is a study in contrasting styles, and underlying indications of hidden strengths or unknown weaknesses; a time of continuing leadership crisis in their respective environments. Except for the newly arrived Englishman, the other three have been in the middle of long, brutal contests, with matters lurching from clamour to confrontation. The times have been rough, with some of them getting rougher.
Take the American. He is from the Samurai school of engagement and diplomacy: all sword, spear, and shield; there is neither interest in nor patience for sitting down and working out solutions. He is at home fighting fire with fire. Though an uphill fight, his opponents have now let loose their own bushfire. In a word – threatened impeachment. People are going to get scarred and hurt in this. It looks like a losing battle on all fronts by all parties. Little is going to get done; and with 2020 now just over a year away, the storms of greater turmoil loom ominously on horizons that draw closer. The lesson: know when to say when, as in no more, with the objective of moving things along. Immovable objects and cascading forces have a long, bad history.
In Guyana, that long-awaited date is imminent, and it shapes up to be early next year. The 2020 Leap Year that is assuming troubling proportions from this early hour. In contrast to the man in the White House, the local leader is a battler of a different strain. He continues to react to rages and resentments from a distance. Others spend themselves in sound and fury; their power and strength are gathered and used against them with frustrating subtlety. There is a fraying of nerves. Displeasure is being expressed in the streets. Despite all the tumult, there has been no give.
The third man is the one who has retreated, to some sensible extent, from the public pressures brought about by domestic and international heat. Those could not be overcome in a pure head to head rumble. The leaders who are wise know when to authorise tactical withdrawal, to afford rebuilding for strategic advancing. It is called learning on the run and under fire. He is wearing down the will of his opponents to remain on the ground, while he focuses on the long game. That includes the oil and land over here.
The ICJ is not a factor: unless favourable, simply unacceptable and unimaginable. That is a winning political position among his own people. The jefe is proving to be wiser than those who stand against him; and they include the man in Washington, who is sure to be distracted by his own Constitutional troubles. Fortune favours the patient and placid.
On the other hand, the British Prime Minister was convinced that he is King John and could act with the same sweeping disdain. For his arrogance and efforts, he ended up reaping rebellious knights and barons, both within and from the robed outside. Now the calls are rising for his head at the Tower. In the so-called civilised societies, there are still those restraints named courts. They are supreme at times like these.
Whether from Great Britain, America, Venezuela, or Guyana, the leadership lessons are simple: do not overreact; do not overreach; do not strive to overpower. Better to study, adapt and position self to overcome.
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