Political actors are complex identities. They act with specific intents and purposes, which are difficult to identify unless a thorough and in-depth conceptual analysis is undertaken with absolute precision and skilful application of behavioural psychology. Such an analysis entails understanding a political actor’s mindset, life experiences, cognitive development, educational and family background, faith and ethical development, and above all, political values and personal orientation towards politics as a “process” to a specifically defined purpose. In this context, it is important to note, political actors all over the world, most specifically in Pakistan, are temperamentally prone to use symbolic slogans, sentimental rhetoric and media manipulations to further their political goals.
Let me illustrate my point with a simple example. At the start of each academic year at the university, I ask students to describe the classroom. Predictably, nine out of ten students give a visual description of the room: it has four walls, windows, a door, blackboard, chairs, etc. Now that is a descriptive analysis. But think for a moment: a classroom is a place of learning. It offers enlightenment, knowledge, information, behaviour modification, a sense of community, unit of purpose and so on, and so forth. That is how we conceptualise the idea of a classroom - the emphasis is on understanding the purpose, the essence, the mindset that is at the core of the educational process. Now that is a conceptual analysis.
i Zardari’s India visit was meant for political observers; in fact, it was a discreet public statement by the President that he was paving way for dynastic rule in Pakistan’s politics - and that he is fully intent on manipulating the incumbent political process in the country to safeguard his personal political role for at least the next five years - come what may.
But, not a chance, Mr President. You are mistaken. You don’t understanding the nation over which you happen to accidentally preside. Your fingers are not on the pulse of the nation. Tavleen Singh, in the article, Time for dynastic democracy to die, wrote: “When a parliamentary constituency becomes an inheritance, it becomes a private estate whose purpose is to benefit the family who owns it. And, the reason why most of our political parties have been turned into private property is because politics is the easiest way to make money in India [and of course, Pakistan].”
Politics and money are in a convenient marriage in Zardari-Gilani’s Pakistan!
Sad and undemocratic, isn’t it?
Good Bless You