Marianas Variety

Last updateTue, 27 Aug 2019 12am







    Monday, August 26, 2019-8:46:10P.M.






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OPINION | Interest of citizens vs interest of party

“IT is the economy, stupid,” is a slight variation of the phrase “The economy, stupid,” which James Carville  coined as a campaign strategist of Bill Clinton’s successful 1992 presidential campaign against sitting President George H.W. Bush.

The phrase became a slogan that was plastered on billboard signs in his home state of Arkansas which eventually was considered iconic. There is appropriateness to this phrase over what is currently happening to and with our citizens daily struggles, not to mention the deceitful claimed of the super economy.

So, looking at our current financial situation and how Ralph Torres, the governor, weaponized the economy as his campaign mantra to get himself elected last November, and how the same super economy mantra is now dragging him down and suffocating him, is ironically unbelievable.

Acknowledging the fact that Typhoon Yutu did have an impact on the residual activities of our government financial operations, an unfortunate event that the governor has no control over. However, what Governor Torres has absolute control over is leadership. Since his time as the leader of the Senate and eventually head of the executive branch, economic leadership was totally non exitance, a quality inherent in all chief executive officers of any enterprises, including in government.

When the proliferation of casino cash on Saipan was spilling all over certain business and government elites, not a single recipient of this largess has taken a moment to seriously considered how the CNMI economic future will be built upon that would provide for a sustainable outcome. Sadly though, in the thrill of victory celebration, self-enrichment was a powerful temptation that over-ruled prudence and statesmanship, but in the agony of defeat moment, regrets and circumspection was the only thing left to debate.

Admittedly, I was consumed with trying to convince our citizens to take notice of all the contemptible decisions and actions taken by this administration, that either directly or indirectly contributed to the demise of our fragile economy, not realizing the severity of our situation is much worse than I originally thought it was. I now found myself face with the inescapable choice to choose between loyalty to party vs loyalty to citizens general wellbeing. This is not a difficult and hard decision for me to make because our leaders are now, and finally, admitting the undeniable truth that our economic condition is bad.

I probably would have taken still a hard line of political indifference toward this administration if the economic situation of the Commonwealth is still being treated as a game of chance, and our school children education is not at risk and our senior’s health security is not threaten. These and more daily revelations of a bleak economy has changed my immediate priority.

We are now at that moment, a very critical moment and no matter how disappointed and indignant we all are at our leaders, the CNMI dire economic situation demands us all to come to her rescue and contribute ideas and ways that would help our citizens live through the hard days ahead. Because it is the ECONOMY that drives everything else that we do, of which our leaders have unprecedentedly and miserably failed us all, condemning them till the kingdom come wouldn’t ease our pain and suffering.

This reminds me of President John F. Kennedy’s inaugural address in January 20, 1961 when he challenged all Americans in his famously quoted plea when he said, “Ask not what your country can do for you...ask what you can do for your country.” He also summoned all citizens to give testimony to its national duty and loyalty to the country. Similarly, we as citizens of this Commonwealth cannot turn our back away from the challenge, especially when the life of our citizens is desperately calling us to act. This is not a “got you moment” but moment of despair and resurrection.

So, if anyone has an idea that can lead to helping our Commonwealth and our people survive this economic malaise and prevent further miseries and economic anxieties. We cannot not lend a helping hand because the life of our citizens is now at stake. More seriously, the financial conditions of our government is at a state of insolvency.

So, please call your precinct representative and volunteer your ingenious contribution. After all, is the “Economy Stupid” that matters most. In submitting your idea(s), let it be based upon the promise of corruption destruction and self-serving interests’ repudiation.

The writer is a resident of Kanat Tabla, Saipan.