Present-day politics in Kenya, Africa and across the world has really transformed over the past decade. Gone are the yesteryear’s of repression where politics was a pre-madonna competition pitting a lead political protagonist who would conjure a signature song for others to follow at will, or by compulsion.
Politics at current, is a showdown of political plutocrats(in majority)working in tandem to create a false reality of division where each politician seeks to be perceived to protect the rights of citizens, and to stand against each others insidious agendas; though the contrary seems truthful.
A Complex game it may be to fathom, but what is most important for you to know is what rules our political leaders use to gain and maintain the power to looting public coffers.
Two books, Niccolo Machiavelli “the Prince” and 1971 Saul Alinsky’s“Rules of Radicals “outline these rules and their significance in successful politics. Here are some of the rules they follow:
Ascension to Power Is either Through Nobility or Favor of the People
At the fore, Nobles represent a group of people who are of a high social class and position, thus well networked and influential. Power via Nobility is therefore gained when a group of nobles based on merits and demerits, settle on a certain noble leader to lead the citizens. In most cases, this kind of leadership is difficult to maintain as the noble leader is seen more of an equal among his fellow nobles than his real authority exudes.
Now, if resistance from the populace ensues due to the noble’s choice of a leader, the elite usually opt for the candidate that is most popular among the populace. The chosen candidate will thus be suctioned into the class of nobles and offered unlimited protection, as long as he satisfies the appetite of the nobles. This is actually one of the main reasons why we elect good leaders into power and once they get there, they shrink into repulsive tyrant leaders; and the cycle of goes on and on.
In contrast, one who attains leadership through favor (popular vote) has more people under his obedience than against him. The only challenge here is that the chosen leader must juggle between satisfying the desires of the nobles and his electives. Harming common people at times in the pursuit of satisfying the nobles, and vice versa is therefore a necessity to survival.
Don’t Deal With Corruption, Its Expensive, Deal With Perceptions
An economic juggernaut it may be in world governments, but corruption unfortunately is rarely dealt with by our political leaders and judiciary. This is not because of inability, but because of its expensive nature as shared by Niccolo Machiavelli “The Prince” and Stephen Levite and Stephen Dubner “Think like a Freak” book premise.
Levite and Dubner say that the main reason many countries still solicit for food aid is not because of food scarcity, but because corruption has stifled resources meant to bolster food security and development in the under-resourced areas.Resources have therefore been concentrated on certain parts of a country based on political merit, rather than determined on the bona fide needs of the populace.
Corruption is secondly colossal in expense,as going for its culprits translates to going up against powerful political moguls than self, who are not handful to say the least. The result of facing up to these political tycoons is a reduced chance of maintaining position power in greener pastures, as you will ultimately gain more noble enemies who therefore see you as an impediment to the profit making business of corruption.
Niccolo Machiavelli secondly details in“The Prince”, that most of our leaders unconcern with corruption and conspiracies mushrooms from the knowledge that their electives will root for them as long as they can successfully brand themselves as unblemished, and having no utter control over corruption racks, which actually sums to resolve nothing.
Don’t be Generous, Being a Miser is Better
Firstly, a miser is a person who loves money,but rarely like spending it. That said, it is common knowledge worldwide to find most political leaders and plutocrats to be misers. Being a miser is a choice made by politicians, not because they don’t care about you as a citizen, but it is a precept to survive in politics; there are no two ways about it. This is how it works.
When you are a miser leader, you resultant spend less, if any, of your own money helping your electives. This places you in a position of power to cushion self and accumulate wealth and money over a definite period of time. Through these, you can latter on afford to be generous at least once in a while, thereby maintaining you power and significantly, the goodwill of your electives. You monetary capacity and thus political machinery to run for re-election.
Inversely, if you decide to be a generous leader as most people would opt for, you will end up spending all your money helping your citizens and in the process, become poor. And as you know poor people are despised, even by their friends and relatives. At this state, you will neither have capacity, nor machinery to gain or retain power of your elective post.
Ethics Is Ambiguous and Must Be Used As Such
In the book Rules of Radicals” by Saul Alinsky,About politicians determine what is ethical not on predominant rules and regulations governing a country, but by:
1. His or her interest in the issue at hand
2. Distance from the issue/conflict or scene
3. Political position at the moment
4. Nature of Conflict.For instance, In times of total war or severe conflict, ethics has no determinant as the end justifies the means.
All said and done, there are numerous rules used to gain and maintain political power irrespective of the country you are in. But one thing continually stands out; that we have to change our political mindset not according to what we see or are told by the media, but by distinguishing fact from fiction. One way to do this is to search for political knowledge rather than speak out of hearsay or sheer obliviousness.