The Sunday Leader

Harm That The Dictatorship Of 2/3 Majority Can Do

While we write these comments the constitutional crisis is by no means over. We will not dwell on legal compulsions following the ‘due processes of the law’ or the great political visions of our time. The Law has been there for donkeys’ years and that is why, at times, we say the Law is an Ass. There are the various ‘Chinthanas’ of political visionaries of mind-boggling proportions from the time of Attila the Hun to contemporary times. We will refer only to the ‘Chinthanas’ of contemporary leaders such as Lenin, Stalin, Mao Zedong, Gaddafi, Castro and Ayatollah Khomeini.
Lenin and Mao still have tomes of their volumes on their thoughts stacked up in libraries but unread for years. The Little Red, Green and books of various colours by Gaddafi and the like have been thrown into waste paper baskets many years ago and serve the useful purpose of the pulp being converted into substances of organic use.
We labour this point because most of present day leaders are under the delusion that the words that fall out of their mouths are profound pearls of wisdom which will be preserved for a lifetime but inevitably end up as refuse.
The art of democratic governance grows beyond constitutional laws and political visions. It is the art of compromise and taking consensus decisions at times sacrificing one’s own cherished beliefs in the greater interests of the country.
Today, Sri Lanka’s tragedy is that legal eagles, political pundits and their cohorts who attempt to rule this country do not realise that the essential element of good governance, from the days of wise and stupid monarchs to present day upstarts and sagacious leaders, is compromise and understanding of each others’ points of view for the good of the country.
It does appear that Lanka is heading for a constitutional impasse if this intransigent attitude of steam rolling anything and anyone in front is continued.
The current constitutional crisis takes us right down to the fundamentals of democracy.
Democracy is the government of the people and therefore the people are the most supreme of all – the Executive, Legislature and the Judiciary.
The people undoubtedly are the most supreme in a democracy but does that make the representatives of the people supreme as well?
The concept of the supremacy of Parliament has come to be accepted in most modern democracies. But can a Legislature – anywhere in the world – with outstanding raucous individuals, criminals and plain thugs be considered collectively as being the most supreme organ of the people?  Parliament has come to be – in most democracies – where criminals come to roost. It is a sad fact that distinguished Indian commentators such as Kuldip Nayar have noted the entry of criminals into the legislature of the World’s biggest democracy.
The implications are evident in many other democracies as mature as the Indian Parliament. Can a Parliament, which tolerates blatant criminals and thugs who are brazen enough to declare their derring-do exploits, be declared the supreme organ of governance?
There are even greater implications. Those gurus of constitutional law in order to ensure the supremacy of the people through their elected representatives have suggested giving them absolute power over everything if they have a two-third majority in parliament -except changing a man into a women and vice versa. That is the power, which is destroying many developing democracies. Sri Lanka first experienced it in under the 1972 Constitution of Sirima Bandaranaike where the ruling coalition had a two third majority. Under this dispensation most successful institutions were practically levelled to the ground under the slogan ‘power to the people’ and socialism. Private property was taken over with scant compensation, wonderful plantations that ‘Laid the Golden Eggs’ for the country were ruined resulting in experts both local and foreign fleeing the country.
J. R. Jayewardene rode to power on the chariots of misfortune created by Sirima Bandaranaike and got a bigger majority and he undid what Bandaranaike did and made it worse.
The dictatorship of the two-third majority had brought ruin to the country and is continuing!
Freedoms are being stifled, people and journalists have disappeared and unless this dictatorship of the two-third majority is brought to its knees the future seems bleak, to say the least.
True, it is all in the name of democracy – the supremacy of the people. The people may be considered supreme but in most instances they are supreme idiots. Winston Churchill the greatest democrat of the 20th Century noted: ‘The best argument against democracy is a five minute conversation with the man on the street’. So are we to give up democracy and take up to another form of sycophancy?
Churchill himself gave the answer later on: ‘Democracy is the worst form of government except all those other forms that have been tried from time to time’.
The people are undoubtedly supreme in a democracy. But they could be mistaken and misguided. It is the task of political leaders to direct and guide them and not reward them for acts of thuggery committed on opponents. The future of Sri Lankan democracy and of Sri Lanka itself, sad to say, is in the hands of so-called leaders pretending to promote democracy and thuggery.

3 Comments for “Harm That The Dictatorship Of 2/3 Majority Can Do”

  1. P.L.J.B.Palipana


  2. Antany Peter

    The people need be educated, knowledge is power. We need to know the real politics at home and abroad. If we only educate ourselves about the local crooks, we may fooled by the foreigners.

    The Western Countries are committing crimes against the developing countries, but the developing countries’ leaders are committing crimes against their own people. The crimes committed by the Westerners are huge, but it seems lesser crimes, because when we commit crimes against our own people it will look more uglier and evil than Westerners’ crimes. The Westerners are well aware of this fact, and playing their cards accordingly. We can’t compare the Westerners’ crimes in Iraq and Afghanistan with the Sri Lankans’ crimes. Sri lankans have been committing crimes against their own people since 1948. We must steer the country into the right path, educate the Sri lankans to respect and value their own people, this is the only way to counterattack the Westerners’ smart game.

    Sri Lankans have been suffering since 1948. Now is the time to get the country from the corrupt and foolish politicians. Sri Lankan’s deserve better, the Sri Lankans have removed the unelected terrorists, now is the time to remove the elected (or self elected) terrorists. The country is halfway through to its freedom. I believe the Sri Lankans intellectuals have the ability to remove the Rajapaksa regime. Now is the time to remove the leaders who rip off their motherland, enough is enough. The corrupted, self-centered, and ignored politicians had the country since 1948. Now is the time to get it back. The Sinhalese people are starting to wake-up. I really do not believe the Rajapaksa regime can fool the Sinhalese for decades as the LTTE fooled the Tamils. The Rajapaksa regime is fooling the Sinhalese that Sri Lanks is going to be the wonder of Asia and knowledge hub, as the LTTE fooled the Tamils that they will get Eelam. We all know that Sri Lanka has the highest percentage of brain drain in Asia, currently the education and justice system are going down. This proves Sri Lanka will never become the wonder of Asia or knowledge hub of Asia. The Rajapaksa regime is demonising the Westerners and Sri lankan diaspora to cover-up its failures. The Westerners are only 8% of the world population, therefore the Westerners will do their best to divide others to rule the world. Having said that, the West has improved a lot in civilisation (at least the westerners have evolved enough to respect and value their own people). There are many things we can learn from the Westerners. We need leaders who can think and act perspectivally, not like robots with inability to think.

    The UNP member said to the Sunday Observer that “the United National Party had governed Sri Lanka for over 30 years since Independence in different terms and led by a number of leaders. It was a formidable political force founded by D.S. Senanayake in 1946 with the support of all community leaders of yesteryear.”
    I disagree with the UNP. The UNP has ruled Sri Lanka for more than 30 years, but did not govern. If it has govern the country the Tamils would not had fallen into India’s trick and took up arms against the government. I really believe that now is the time to create a new political party and remove the old mindset and ideology. The SLFP and UNP have proved for decades that they do not have the ability to govern. If the UNP got elected again, they will bring the old mindset and ideology, which has been unproductive and useless for decades. Time for the Sri Lankan intellectuals to start a new political party and remove the foolish, useless and unproductive leaders from the power.

    Conclusion: If you are well ahead in civilisation means that you commit crimes against other races, especially against the developing countries to have your way, in order to rule others. If you are behind in civilisation means that you commit crimes against your own people to have your way, in order to rip off your motherland to accumulate wealth for your future generations. When you commit crimes against your own people your crimes looks more evil than Westerners’ crimes. Therefore, if you want to be perceived committing lesser crimes follow the Westerners.

  3. Adrian Perera

    Good article, and this should be spread amongst the villages whom are been fooled by corrupted evil politicos in Mother Lanka.

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