Outside Politics

3rd September 2000

Indians take on Lincoln's democracy

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Apolitician in India has re-defined Abraham Lincoln's definition of Government and democracy made universally known after his Gettysburg address. It is no longer a Government of the people, by the people and for the people. 

The newest version is contained in the latest news- letter of the Retired Senior Police Officers Association. 

This is what it says: " An Indian Leader was asked on his visit to the US to explain the meaning of present day Democracy. "He replied Government of the people, Government far from the people, and Government to buy the people is called Democracy.

The leader across the Palk Straits may not have had Sri Lanka in mind when he said those words of modern day wisdom. The paradigm certainly fits, more appropriately with the parliamentary elections round the corner. 

Political scribes

A journalist cum crusading trade unionist who ended up in a top notch media slot may soon rise to a higher position.

Insiders say he may end up as an MP on the People's Alliance National List. 

They also say that two journalists may come on the UNP's National List. 

The circus begins

The hectic tussle by aspirants to seek party candidature for tomorrow's nominations for parliamentary general elections have had their humourous moments too. Queues of cars and even three wheelers remain parked outside the residence of a party leader. His own party men are aghast with laughter about the goings on. 

As a wag among them explained, "when one goes out after receiving the blessing, another walks in. 

He cuts the first and ensures he is on the list. The circus has gone on in the past few days." At least one party is a sure winner. That is the mobile phone operators. Those waiting outside cars and three wheelers were calling their own favourites to say a visitor was just leaving and it was time for their man to walk in. 

Weta Uda types left in the cold 

Tomorrow's nominations will reveal the exclusion of a new breed from the UNP ranks. They have been given a dubious title Weta Uda Kattiya or those who had remained on the fence. To keep them away from PA's tempting offers in exchange for a vote for Constitutional reforms, a group of UNP MPs were flown abroad, to Singapore, Male, Dubai and London. 

Now, some of them who are the so called Weta Uda Kattiya are being denied nominations. At least one, who played the role of a double agent to become instant millionaire, is not contesting. At least to one senior politico, the Weta Uda Types became dissidents though he used another word to identify them. Not well versed in the intricacies of English or phonetics, he declared "these pg pellows, the descendants should all be sacked." 

Item Five

The healthy nightingale was at a chat show on the "golden" idiot box caused more than a few gaffes.

Her statistics on health indicators, particularly malnutrition levels, contradicted the UNDP accounts. As for the draft constitution, which did not seek passage in Parliament, she seemed unaware of a provision for an north east interim council for ten years. 

Following father's footsteps

The two daughters followed their father's footsteps into politics. The father, a former Cabinet type and later an ailing deputy, taught them the fundamentals. 

Now the two daughters have decided on proportional representation of sorts, at least where the family is concerned. 

One is to emerge as a PA candidate and the other as the UNP candidate, both for the Kegalle district. 

Who's not under Ashraff? 

The National Unity Alliance (NUA) which SLMC leader M.H.M. Ashraff, has formed has been given another name by a quick witted rival Not Under Ashraff.

And one new entrant to the alliance, a man who is a key player in a body that regulates willow weilding, has embarked on a head hunt. 

He wants non SLMC types to join the NUA and become candidates. If they fail to win, rewards include postings as Chairman of State Corporations or jobs in diplomatic missions. 

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