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Tuesday, 18 December 2012






Marriage Proposals
Government Gazette


Welcome to the land of the inane, repetitious criticism. Says a statement issued by the Opposition that Sri Lankan newspaper editors should have walked out of the breakfast meeting with the President last week, no sooner had the Parliamentary Select Committee (PSC) members walked in, and taken their seats.

This is the same Opposition which did NOT say that reporters should have walked out when the Chief Justice’s backers -- a motley team of lawyers – met the press and purported to state what transpired at the Parliamentary Select Committee sessions investigating the Chief Justice.

How many times do we have to say this -- unfortunately to the point where it sounds so much threadbare and cliche like --- but what is sauce for the goose, certainly isn’t sauce for the gander these days, is it …?

The media, as per the sage wisdom of the Sri Lankan Opposition, is to fold their laptops, cap their pens and show their backs to the President and his Ministers when they are talking about the PSC sessions and what allegedly transpired when these sessions were ongoing, but they are supposed to be at the edges of their seats, crane their necks, put their tongues out and be all ears when the other side speaks about what happened at these same proceedings?

The only thing being left unsaid here in the Opposition statement, being that the media persons and editors should have leant over, and licked the members of the Opposition --- let us say for the sake of making this printable -- on their shins …?

There was the other recent criticism that the Colombo night races disrupt community life, and should not be held because, as for cricket, little children could play with bat and rubber ball, but they just cannot play with toy racing cars!

If there is going to be a case made against the tourist friendly policies of these times with such incisive and intellectually stimulating criticism such as the one made above, perhaps its time the Ministry of Power and Energy recognized a new energy source. Hot air would probably beat thermal energy anytime, particularly, these days, in terms of supply.

The criticism being about community life being disrupted with roads being closed, perhaps the community life being spoken of here must be the bar-hopping peripatetic night lives of the Colombo NGO jet set. Apart from these people in the main, it is a good question which community is being inconvenienced by the closure of say Galle Face Centre Road, and perhaps one access road, adjacent?

Certainly it’s not the vast majority of the suburban or rural working classes that are inconvenienced by the closure of one or two thoroughfares in the glamorous five star hotel sector of Colombo. By the time the roads are closed for the races, the Colombo working classes, the few there are actually working in these chic districts, have boarded their buses and gone home too.

So it’s obvious which community’s inconvenience the critics are so excruciatingly worried about. It’s the glitter set’s little cosy coffee table chats that are being disrupted. That certainly must be a profound calamity if you are earning top-dollar in the NGO circuit and are losing the opportunity of losing those dollars at the most glamorous five star addresses in town …

Also forgotten is the fact that in the remembered past (remembered by us) some of these roads were closed, particularly during the administration of Chandrika Bandaranaike Kumaratunga -- that most learned and fashion conscious denizen of the Colombo NGO critic set. The wag’s favorite description of Kumaratunga’s time in office used to be ‘Colombo is closed,’ something of a tourist slogan those days.

In perpetuity, that is. From this, the current administration turned Colombo into a bustling, 24/7, 365 day peaceful Mecca for tourism, night life and cultural pursuits.

But then, two of Colombo’s chic district streets are closed off for a night or two for races that are tourist magnets that also put the city on the thrill-seekers map, therefore bringing in bucks from high-spenders, and Colombo’s rigid intelligentsia goes from mental rigour mortis to absolute rictus.

Their world ends, because while the event passes under the radar of the larger Sri Lankan populous in their rural or suburban dwellings far from Colombo’s chic district that go about their daily and nightly lives regardless, these poor NGO liberals have missed their nightly tipple. Ah, the pity of it.

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