Wayne Furbert sure didn’t hold back much in today’s interview on how the UBP should be reforming itself. This writer can’t say he disagree’s with Mr. Furbert, at least not entirely, as certainly one could expect much more than term limits, at least from the UBP. Those who believe the UBP doesn’t need change should likely wake up and smell the proverbial coffee. Indeed, despite claims that half the electorate supported them in the last election, one could wonder where all those people went in recent polls. Could it be that only 30 percent actually supported them with the rest simply having voted against the incumbent?
In the eyes of this writer the best thing the UBP could do for the betterment of our island would be to disband completely. That means it won’t become the party formerly known as the UBP. Nor would it play musical constituencies. Further it wouldn’t attempt to bring in the token black politicians. No, disbanding isn’t a modern day remake of the Emperor’s new clothes, it would mean the end of the UBP, full stop. No party line. No caucus. No hierarchy. No UBP. Surely you may be thinking: he’s gone mad. Perhaps, but first allow this lowly writer to plead his case as to why the UBP should disband, and into what form.
If the UBP are to really change, it is the belief of this writer that it should be to disband into independent candidates. Why not a new party? Surely it has been said that there is strength in unity, so why independents? Ah, for the cognizant observer would note that strength in unity in the case of the UBP really means strength of unity for the PLP. Unity for the PLP? How could that be? Simply put it is the belief of more than just this writer that the only reason the left and right factions of the PLP remain united is the existence of the UBP. Put differently, the UBP is the glue that holds the PLP together.
So why independents? Simply put, independents offer the strongest foot forwards.
- First off, independents relinquish the title of being puppeted by the old white guard for they shall toe no party line, vote and stand for themselves and hold allegiance only to their represented constituents. They are freed of the chains of the party and as such, are their own voice, a voice which can gain more respect from the middle block of voters than one that stands with either side.
- Second, independents open the door for newcomers, those individuals out in the community who are highly capable of contributing to the betterment of our island but refuse to associate themselves with either the UBP or the PLP. Such individuals would be free to stand on their own two feet without having to worry about succumbing to arguments that supporting them would split the vote and guarantee a win for the other side.
- Third, independents, as well as a disbanded UBP, will empower frustrated PLP politicians. Not having a party to battle against, frustrated PLPers will be free to stand as independents knowing that they won’t be easily challenged by the UBP and made as redundant and present day independents. Such a move would open to door to individuals or even a group stepping out of the PLP to challenge the status quo. The glue that binds the PLP would stick no more.
So, now that this writer has pleaded his case, let us recap. A name change will not work. Why? Well if you think calling broccoli a cookie will get a kid to eat it than certainly you know something the rest of us don’t. Filling the ranks with token black politicians will also not work. Why? Well with the UBP’s demographical support base it would make about as much sense as the chewbacca defense. So, unless you think a wolf in sheep’s clothing looks that much different from a wolf, that doesn’t have much hope either.
As suggested, in the eyes of this writer the best course of action the UBP could take would be to disband into independents. It would relinquish the claims of puppetry, open the doors to newcomers and empower the disillusioned members of the PLP who only hang on in spite of the UBP. Disbanding the UBP could quite possibly put an end to both parties and give rise to a new political structure that is far more capable of moving beyond the petty bickering, childlike tantrums and ridiculous squabbles that plague our present system. It may well serve as a move that could build a government fitting of Bermuda that is truly dedicated to the betterment of our future.