#COVID19Chronicles-118: August 10, 2020-Who’s got your goat?

One obvious problem of playing tag is that you are there to be tagged, too, if you don’t catch people.

Jamaican politicians love to play ‘gotcha’, which is like political tag: rather than focus on matters of substance and policies, they like to get in little niggly jabs. Death by a thousand strokes, in a way.

When I wrote yesterday, little did I know how all-seeing I was. My blog post included:

I like Damion Crawford as a political showman, who is one of the most entertaining of all the current politicians…My biggest problem with Mr. Crawford, is that, as a mathematician, he’s often guilty of not following his arguments to their logical conclusion, and gets wrapped up in his own entertainment.’

Not long into the morning, I then saw a tweet from said Senator, querying some COVID19 data, and unable to square the circle. I tried to help:

The real problem for the Senator was simple; he had chosen to use data summarized by the Gleaner newspaper rather than the data supplied daily by the Minister/Ministry of Health and Wellness, which had all the figures to solve the non-puzzle.

Twitter is a herd and when it smells blood it tends to head straight for the kill, so there was a veritable ‘feeding frenzy’ over the mathematician struggling with some simple maths. Gotcha! Gotcha back!

Things reached a political head when the Minister decided to pile on:

The double entendre ‘Check yourself, bro’ was a master stroke.

As often happens, people double down rather than back down or admit they may a (silly) mistakes and politicians never make mistakes, right.

The Minister didn’t need to make the obvious point that he and his ministry had ‘said it a little louder’, but obviously some couldn’t hear…and now must feel…ridicule.

As the adage goes, when stuck in a hole, just stop digging.

For me, it was telling in several ways. I don’t know if many people really saw the solution themselves, or just saw it solved and then used that knowledge. But, what better than to beat someone with their own stick and Senator Crawford’s stick was the fact that he’s a mathematician.

But, give a dog a bone and somehow it won’t let go, even when it’s dry and starting to look like a fossil.

But, it was telling in terms of what passes for motivation and real points of importance. So driven was the senator to prove he was right when most saw he was wrong was the simple point that his problem with the numbers wasn’t due to those whom he wanted to target. The Gleaner editor was locked in a bathroom only findable by the hysterical giggle that could be heard from behind a cubicle door. If he’d written ‘The Gleaner needs to give us the full details’, he could have gotten away almost scot-free including with a jab at a common enemy, the ‘fake news’ media. But, no. Wag bone, wag.

The Senator has a soft spot for goats, but he ought have learned the lessons of his defeat in East Portland—the goats that people may want is curried in a pot:

But someone really got his goat, yesterday.


Author: Dennis G Jones (aka 'The Grasshopper')

Retired International Monetary Fund economist. My blog is for organizing my ideas and thoughts about a range of topics. I was born in Jamaica, but spent 30 years being educated, living, and working in the UK. I lived in the USA for two decades, and worked and travelled abroad, extensively, throughout my careers and for pleasure. My views have a wide international perspective. Father of 3 girls. Also, married to an economist. :)