Fit-twemmin u l-valuri tagħna – aħna l-popli li ngħixu mal-Mediterran u fir-reġjuni ta’ madwaru – żviluppajna matul is-sekli u l-millennji stejjer sbieħ jew talanqas affaxxinanti, dwar il-mewt u l-ħajja … kif it-twelid iwassal għal tiġdid u wara għal sagrifiċċji ġodda. Minn Gilgamex għal Osiris sa Kristu, b’oħrajn li jissenslu bejniethom…

Il-Milied hu parti minn dan il-kurrent. Uħud jgħidu li mhu xejn aktar minn hekk. Oħrajn iħabirku biex jerfgħuh ’il fuq lejn tifsira li minnha joħorġu tagħlimiet sopranaturali dwar l-eżistenza tal-bniedem u l-miri tal-eżistenza. Fiż-żewġ każi, ir-rankatura ta’ festa fil-Milied tferraħ. Anki jekk għal dan biss, fiha valur. Bħala festa rridu nibqgħu ngħożżuha.

Ma ninsewx kif il-miti li jgħaqqduna minn żmien il-qedem bħala popli tal-Mediterran, jibqgħu fi ħsibijietna u fi qlubna. Huma għodod simboliċi tal-akbar qawwa.

MINN VENEZIA

Ir-rapport tal-Kummissjoni ta Venezija (Kunsill tal-Ewropa) dwar is-sistema Maltija tal-ġudikatura u tal-istat tad-dritt kien wieħed mill-aħjar li nkitbu dwar Malta fl-aħħar snin. Iżomm ċerta prudenza – kif għandu jkun – dwar kull ma ġie rapportat dwar l-iżviluppi tal-aħħar snin. Xorta waħda, ir-rapport irid jinqara u jiġi mifhum b’kawtela.

Ikun żball jekk kif diġà beda jiġri, ir-rapport jinqara u jiġi proġettat skont miri partiġġjani.

Pereżempju, problema bil-metodoloġija tar-rapport hu kif qiegħed jissettja in-normi li skonthom għandhom jitwettqu l-affarijiet. Fuq l-esperjenza ta’ liema pajjiżi qed iserraħhom? Il-kbar jew iż-żgħar? X’inhuma l-kriterji bażiċi li minnhom qed jitlaq biex jasal għar-rakkomandazzjonijiet?

It-tentazzjoni għal xi wħud hi li jitilqu biex b’ħanġra daqsiex, jirrepetu pwerilitajiet simili għal dawk li xxandar id-deputata Ewropea Anna Gomez. Xi stupidaġni!

BONZO

“Bedtime for Bonzo” hu film tas-sena 1951 dwar professur tal-psikoloġija li jipprova jrabbi ċimpanżi ċkejken qisu kien bniedem biex jara jilħaqx għan-normi ta’ solidarjetà li l-bnedmin “jipprattikaw”. Ma fih xejn tal-għaġeb ħlief li ma jdejqekx, anki jekk seta’ jkun ftit aktar fuq ruħu – ħaġa li laqtet lill-kritiċi meta ħareġ.

L-akbar interess li baqa’ fih hu minħabba Ronald Reagan, il-president futur tal-Istati Uniti tal-Amerika: jieħu l-parti tal-protagonist. Miegħu jaħdmu Diana Lynn u Walter Slezak, fost oħrajn. Imma hi Peggy, fir-rwol ta’ Bonzo, li tisraq kull xena.

Reagan jippreżenta r-rwol tiegħu b’kompetenza. Biss, ma jistax jonqos li jidher kemxejn ċass imqabbel ir-reċtar ta’ Bonzo. Mhux ta’ b’xejn li fis-snin ta’ wara, Reagan ftit wera interess fil-film. Sadattant, ġimagħtejn wara li l-film tlesta, Peggy (Bonzo) mietet f’nar li qam fiz-zoo fejn ħaduha tgħix.

B’xewqat sbieħ għal Milied ħieni lill-personnel u l-qarrejja kollha tal-inews u l-familji tagħhom.

English Version – Myths

In our beliefs and values – we the peoples who live around the Mediterranean and its contiguous regions – have developed over centuries and millenia beautiful or at least fascinating accounts about death and life… how birth triggers renewal and leads at a later stage to new sacrifices: from Gilgamesh to Osiris to Christ, with other figures in between…

Christmas forms part of this pattern. Some claim it is nothing more than that. Others strive to upgrade it towards a belief system from which they can derive supernatural teachings about the existence of man and the ultimate aims of that existence. In both cases, the festive momentum generates joy. Even if only for this, as a holy day it is valuable and we need to give it importance.

We should not forget that the myths which from the depths of antiquity, have identified us as peoples of the Mediterranean remain ingrained in our thoughts and emotions. They serve as extremely powerful symbolic tools.

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From Venice

The report of the Venice Commission (Council of Europe) about the Maltese judicial system and the rule of law was among the best that were written regarding Malta in recent years. As it should be, in covering the developments of recent years, the report maintains a certain prudence. Even so, it should be analysed and interpreted with due caution.

It would be a mistake if – as has already been happening – the report is understood and portrayed according to partisan objectives.

For instance, a problem with the report’s methodology is in the way by which norms are invoked to regulate governance issues. On the experience of which countries has these been aligned? Bigger or smaller states? And what are the basic criteria that serve as launch pad for the final recommendations?

The temptations for some is to cry out loud and taking the report as anexcuse, repeat puerile statements similar to those which MEP Anna Gomez delights in. How stupid!

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Bonzo

“Bedtime for Bonzo” is a 1951 film about a psychology professor who attempts to bring up a chimpanzee baby as if it were a man child, and thus determine whether he can follow the norms of solidarity that humans “practise”. It contains nothing so wonderful except that it does not bore you, even if the action could have been more sparkling, as some critics remarked at the time.

The film’s greatest reason to still attract attention is Ronald Reagan, the future President of the USA. He plays the protagonist alongside among others, Diana Lynn and Walter Slezak. But it is Peggy, playing Bonzo, which takes over every scene.

Reagan’s acting is competent. However, he could not but fail to appear as less alive than Bonzo, given the chimp’s performance. It’s understandable that in later years, Reagan showed minimal interest in the film. Anyway some two weeks after the film was shot, Peggy (Bonzo) died in a fire that broke out in the zoo to which she was taken.

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All best wishes for a Happy Xmas to the staff and readers of The Malta Independent, as well as their families.