Kelli diskussjoni interessanti ma’ ħabib li għalkemm iżgħar sew minni, lanqas tista’ tgħidlu żagħżugħ. Skont hu, it-twemmin ideoloġiku m’għadux importanti fil-politika.
Dawk li jimmilitaw fiha mil-lemin-ċentru u dawk mix-xellug-ċentru jagħtu importanza u prijorità lill-istess affarijiet. Jimmiraw l-aktar biex ikunu huma li jsibu l-ewwel is-soluzzjonijiet tekniċi li jgħoddu għaċ-ċirkostanzi li jkunu qamu. Biex jilħqu din il-mira, issibhom kollha lesti li jaċċettaw l-ispalla ta’ kull min jista’ jgħinhom jaslu, ġeneralment minn fost il-forzi soċjali l-aktar qawwija tal-pajjiż.
“Allura għalhekk li daqstant nies qed jivvotaw populist?”
Ridt nipprovokah bil-mistoqsija. Xejn ma tqanqal. Għalih il-populisti jaqaw fl-istess fasla. Waslu għall-konklużjoni “teknika” li biex jiksbu l-poter iridu jirbħu l-appoġġ ta’ min inqaras b’li jinsab għaddej. Fir-realtà għad insibu, dejjem skont hu, li meta l-populisti jirbħu l-poter, għal ftit se tinbidel il-qoxra ta’ barra, imbagħad kollox imur lura lejn kif kien qabel. Mela nsejtu lil Tsipras fil-Ġreċja? spiċċa qal.
Li l-Belt Valletta nbidlet u qed tinbidel għall-aħjar hi ħaġa evidenti. Xorta meta jsaqsuni dwarha, tiġini nostalġija għal żminijiet oħra – l-aktar dwar il-ħamba popolari li kull belt trabbi fit-toroq tagħha.
Illum dil-ħamba hi pjuttost sinjorili, kwieta u bieżla, imrikkba fuq il-kurrenti turistiċi għaddejja.
Mentri l-ħamba li niftakar jien kienet differenti, aktar storbjuża, anqas rikka. Biex tistrieħ ftit minnha, kont issib ħwienet ċkejkna, li m’għadhomx jeżistu, bħal ta’ Dimitri fi Triq ir-Repubblika, fejn kont tista’ tieħu kafe karg bil-ħalib u pastizzi jisomtu, huma wkoll ċkejkna u friski, kif m’għadekx issib aktar fil-ħwienet.
Il-ħanut kien qisu kuritur dejjaq, issikkat b’nies, zgħazagħ u xjuh, mal-imwejjed tiegħu li jitrejqu imgħaġġla u lura ġol-folla ssikkata ta’ Triq Irjali.
Ittra lil Trump
Kemm ilu li Donald Trump rebaħ l-elezzjoni Amerikana, laqatni l-aktar artiklu fil-“Los Angeles Times”. Ikkonsista f’ittra miftuħa li żagħżugħa ta’ oriġini Messikana, bint immigranti rregolari, bagħtet lill-President-elett.
Fissritlu kif iggradwat fl-istess zmien mill-istess skola sekondarja bħal bintu, fuq “scholarship” li kienet rebħet. Wara, kompliet l-Università, dejjem b’borża ta’ studju, għax għalkemm il-ġenituri tagħha baqgħu jistinkaw biex jagħtuha l-aħjar ħajja u opportunitajiet, kienu ta’ baxxa fortuna. Biss, dejjem għamlu minn kollox biex jgħinuha fl-istudji tagħha.
Issa li waslet qrib fejn il-ġenituri tagħha u hi xtaqu li tasal, qed issib lil Trump li bħala President se jimxi skont programm li jizvaluta kull ħaġa li stinkaw għaliha. U allura b’wiċċha minn quddiem, wegħditu li se tkun qed tuza l-edukazzjoni li trawmet fiha biex tikkombatti l-miri tiegħu.
English Version – Belief
I had an interesting discussion with a friend who’s much younger than I am, though you can hardly call him a young man. He claims ideological belief is no longer important in politics.
Activists from the centre-right and from the centre-left give importance and priorities to the same issues. Mostly, their aim is to be the first to discover the technical solutions relevant to contemporary circumstances. To attain such an aim, they are quite prepared to accept the support of whoever can be of support, generally from among the most power social forces in the country.
“So is that why so manypeople are ending up voting populist?”
My intention was to rattle him with the question. He was unruffled. In his view, populists form part of the same pattern. They have concluded that in “technical” terms, to achieve power, they need to tap the support of those who have become the underdogs in today’s situation. In reality, we shall find – so he says – that when populists gain power, for a while on the surface, there’ll be some changes, but then everything will revert to the former status quo.
Have you forgotten Tsipras in Greece? That’s how my friend signed off.
That Valletta is changing and for the better cannot be doubted. Still when I get to discuss this change, I feel a nostalgia for the past – especially regarding the popular hubbub that all cities develop in their main streets.
Valletta’s crowds as of now have become quite prosperous, well settled and busy, floating on the currents of visiting tourists.
The hubbub that I remember from days gone by was different, more noisy, less well fed. To shelter from it for a while, you would seek small coffee shops, like Dimitri’s in today’s Republic Street: they no longer exist. There, you could sip a thick coffee laced with milk, while sampling hot pastizzi, very small in size and fresh, like you do not find any more in today’s coffee shops.
Dimitri’s – resembling a narrow corridor — would have crammed around its tables people young and old, as they snacked hurriedly before going back to join the crowds that packed yesterday’s Kingsway.
Letter to Trump
Since Donald Trump won the American presidential election, I have been most impressed by an article in the Los Angeles Times. It featured an open letter to the President-elect written by a young woman of Mexican origin whose parents were irregular migrants to the US.
In it, she explains how she graduated at the same time as Trump’s daughter and from the same exclusive secondary school, on the basis of a scholarship she had been awarded. Thereafter, she completed her University studies, always on the back of scholarship awards.Although her parents did their best to provide her with the best opportunities in life, they were of modest means. However, they did all they could to back her educational prospects.
Now that she was close to the outcome that she and her parents had aimed for, here is Trump as President determined to follow a programme that would devalue all they had striven for. So, with no apologies to offer, she was promising him that she would use the skills and proficiencies that her education had provided her with, to combat the aim that he had set.