Just over two years into the current administration and the government formed by the Andrew Holness and his JLP colleagues has had more than enough time to stamp its image clearly in the minds of Jamaicans and on the shape of the island. But, also they’ve affected how life has been led and seen, especially in the political sphere. I think that they’ve had a hand in changing our language and expressions and experience in that area. So, here’s a JLP-inspired dictionary of modern Jamaica.

A is for Andrew, standing atop his team, and none is his peer, thanks to a tight grip on his super ministry of economic growth etc. Like the Pope, he should be called His Holiness.

B is for BS, that stock-in-trade of politicians, but now masked by a well-oiled PR machine at the top of the administration, though it cannot control the arrant babbling lower down tree. If you find ‘arrant babbling’ harsh, I suggest you trawl through some of the postings made by Cabinet ministers on Twitter. Well, that’s #MyPersonalView 😉

C is for CHEC, a better mark of policy continuity than most things in Jamaican life. They may not be ‘our’ Chinese, but as visitors noted last week the ‘Chinese road’ has marked our land and our movement…Crime, too, facilitated some say by these same new roads.

D is for dialogue, often mentioned but rarely undertaken.

E is for Electoral Commission of Jamaica, who’ve been so busy organizing by-elections. Though, the resignation in March of Director of Elections Orette Fisher is murky and now mired in sub justice… But, with all he talk of by-elections, all that targeted spending makes one think of buy elections.

F is for foreign influence, whichI think is as strong now as in the previous administration, though shared differently. I really can’t say if it’s on balance good or bad, whether CHEC matters more than RUBIS matters more than IMF or World Bank or EU or IDB or CDB or International Maritime Organization or WTO or IOC, etc.

G is for guns…illegal, many found but little or no impact on killings. Of course, green, too.

H is health and hospital crises, as in obesity and wellness and Cornwall Regional…

I is for identity, as in National Identity Scheme, the curer of all ills, if you believe the propaganda. But, it’s still something Jamaicans don’t really have as a shared set of values.

J is for justice, still too often delayed, even in the matter of appointing a new Chief. For goodness, Sykes! 🙂 Similarly, delayed are those job descriptions.

K is for Kingston, getting back some lost lustre. 145 years strong and on the verge of something new?

L is for Labour and Labourites, as terms of endearment and for some ‘our’ time. How wonderful it must be to have your party colour as part of the national flag. It’s not easy being green? 🙂

M is still ‘Man a yaad’…Macaroni…Move it! But, it began with Nesbeth and ‘My dream’.

N is for Nigel…#BlackEnglishman…Clarke: finance portfolio in the hands of a PhD mathematician? What could go wrong? 🤔

O is Office of the Prime Minister, or OPM, or ‘old people’s mausoleum’; a mega ministry now filled with dinosaurs and moving like them? #JustAsking.

P is well, you know it will have to be “P for Prosperity”!

Q is for questions–and there are many–that are important but don’t get answered…unless people go through ATI.

R must be for Ruddy Spencer, whose crude truth about partisan policies and political tribalism went unpunished and who can feel strengthened by his leader’s confidence in naming him 2nd in charge of no less a ministry than national security. It’s ‘ruddy’ right that ‘our’ people get their due when ‘we’ are in power. Tell those other Jamaicans to go find their own seeds. I see he eventually apologized in a more fulsome way, according to a letter to the Political Ombudsman, after some public criticism of his earlier limited apology. Lessons learned?

S for Shane…I’m no Jamaican. State of Emergency, even if you call it enhanced safety measures, it is what it is. Security, as in when can we sleep with our doors open, again?

T is for tribalism, still strong, still wrong.

U is for underrepresented, as in the basis of government is clearly not of the people: 48 percent voter turnout in the February 2016 general election is shocking, but the downward trend since the mid-1970s is clear.

V is for voters, too tired to care?

W is for Warmington, Everald. Is this boy attending class? Because, he’s been notable for his relative absence from the fray. Anyone knowing his whereabouts, please put your hand up…though, where I’ll leave to you 🙂

X is the spot less often marked in elections as voter participation rates plummet.

Y is for ‘Yes men and women’. No one can deny the wave of psychophantic behaviour often exhibited by those who surround the PM. If there are critics in that group, they’re sounding like 🦗 crickets 🦗.

Z is for ZOSO

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