I accept that the twenty-first century is a century of revolution. That our print-based, elites-centred models of representative democracy have run their historical course. That the model of society which gives a small group the exclusive right to rule over a large one, with minimal checks and balances which can be activated by the large group, needs to be re-examined and remodelled. That the tools we now have at our disposal—tools for public education and public participation—have opened the door for more participatory forms of governance, and that we must move with the world in that direction.And so this election, I do not consent to participate in this old, flawed model. I know it's a crazy idea. I know it's illogical. But I don't believe it's wrong.Read More
People ask me the same questions again and again.
- Why go out of your way to spoil the ballot—why not stay home/go to the beach?
- What is spoiling the ballot going to achieve?
- Why aren't you looking at the candidates on offer and considering voting for a person rather than a party?
- If you're so dissatisfied, why don't you run/find an independent to run in your constituency?
These are not questions that are easy to answer. I've been thinking about this election for a loooonnnng time and have a whole lot to say.Several times I've started to explain them on camera. Here's one, recorded back in November 2016, right after President Trump's election. Perhaps it'll begin to give an answer.[wpvideo MQ11ozrc]
It's been a long time since I was one for debating politics. I'm not saying it never happened. I am a Bahamian after all. But I've since recovered from that particular illness. There is little to debate. There is little that is happening worth debating.OK, so I know that the pundits and the newspapers might disagree with me here. After all, you have only to open a computer or a newspaper and you will see drama splashed across the page or screen. Hit men. Foreign investors. Referenda. Rogue politicians insulting people. The wry satire of political one-liners. The rabid hate of, well, haters. And crime, crime, crime.But there is nothing to debate about these things. There are simply facts. They are sobering facts. They tell us very serious things about who and where we are as a people and a nation. And yet we do nothing about the facts. Rather, we use them for entertainment. We use them to point fingers at public figures, to rack up Likes on Facebook, to provide "commentary" on what we generously call "politics", to delude ourselves that engaging in that kind of conversation is making any kind of difference.We are in decline, because we spend too much time talking about people and situations, and too little time doing anything to bring about change. We continue to assume that those people who present themselves for election to public office can make any kind of dent in this decline, and waste hours and breath bigging up or tearing down this or the other of those people.We willfully ignore another fact: that far too many of today's public political actors are either devoid of any shred of integrity or compassion or intelligence, or else have compromised so much of themselves that integrity, compassion and intelligence have been bartered away for nominations, political ascendency, power. We disregard the very clear truth that virtually all the people we're currently faced with electing have had to choose between their personal convictions, their values, their goals for their nation (assuming they began with these), and their place in their particular political party—and that virtually all of them have made the wrong choice. What we see in the political sphere are greed, truthlessness, cowardice, megalomania, and lunacy. When last did we see our politicians display qualities like honesty, humility, or common sense? These days, party politics are a corrosion which destroys everything it touches.And so I have absolutely nothing to say about political parties. Do not ask me to say anything; do not ask me to comment on any one of them; they are all compromised, all tarnished, all corrupt in many ways, big and small. One or two individuals stand up head and shoulders above the crowd; but even these have sacrificed their ability to bring about real change for the perceived security of remaining tethered to their parties.But I do have something to say about this:
We need a movement.I am the first Volunteer.I am not going to create a new initiative. I am going out from the studio everyday, and I am going to help those who are already helping others; I am going to serve our people and I am going to ask you to send them what you can to help, but more than that, I am going to ask you to join me.Simply put, My Fellow Bahamians, we are in the midst of an unprecedented national emergency. A crisis of faith, a crisis of conscience, and ultimately, a crisis, not just of leadership but of servant leadership.Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. once said: "Anyone can become great, because anyone can serve. In service is our greatness". Therefore, my friends, I will do everything in my power everyday from here forward not to permit any Bahamian child to go to bed hungry, homeless or in fear.I am going to live Dr. Kings message.And, I am asking you to join me.--Jeff Lloyd
Amen. I am on board. It's a new day. Talking about a revolution sounds like a whisper, and I'm whispering.