In my letter of 14 April 2021 published some three years ago in the KN I had suggested that Africans need to embrace capitalism in Guyana. Now three years later the Opposition Leader Mr Aubrey Norton (Demerara Waves) is commendably exhorting Africans to get into business! During emancipation celebrations at Dartmouth the PNC leader said “The African Guyanese needs to focus on business. We need to make all our villages sustainable where people in the village should be able to find everything they want or most things they want in the village,”
At the 2023 emancipation concert Mr. Norton said “We are operating at a time when there is the tendency for people to give handouts. Now, handouts cannot solve our problems”.
But Mr Norton is nevertheless on record as encouraging Guyanese to accept handouts as it is their finances from the national treasury.
Continuing, Mr Norton, “said a special system was needed to establish businesses and counter the big problem of poverty. ‘What will solve our problems are structured programmes to put our people into business. It is proper levels of employment so people can earn and mind their families,’” he emphasized.
Lo and behold in the Village Voice of 25 th April 2021 titled ” “Vassan Ramracha’s intellectual presumptuousness of the African reality”Mr Lincoln Lewis of the TUC … he owes money to the Village Voice as per a court judgment… had condemned my letter with venom:” Now he perches from his arrogant position, not having to do the initial heavy lifting, to now decry a people. …. His letter was an attempt to insult and denigrate the African community; ( Ramracha ) is not white but East Indian. But his thinking is no different than the arrogant whites with their misplaced sense of superiority, and false notion that they can define for Africans what their problems are and tell them what to do to correct them.—“This is what you call intellectual presumptuousness.” Mr Lewis goes on to say “Ramracha is being contemptuous and disrespectful to Africans.”
Mr Lewis is certainly one angry African and in all his fulminations absolutely fails to suggest any solution how Blacks can economically empower themselves !
Indeed Dr. Walter Rodney would have been certainly amazed how Black Leaders and many Blacks intellects in Africa and the Diaspora are the ones who are keeping Black people underdeveloped and intellectually ignorant to suit their political agendas of victimhood to influence and control the Black masses. IPADA -G is a prime example of claiming victimhood as it incessantly seeks government handouts.
Too often Blacks in the Diaspora are exposed and influenced mostly to politicians and intellectuals on the Left and not on the Right. The Leftists Black Socialists mostly emphasize ‘victimhood’, the reparations ideology and a dependency on Government handouts.
The Blacks on the Right on the other hand emphasize a more capitalist republican approach to empower Blacks through strong family culture, education and self-economic development.
On the Right – prominent activists like Bill Cosby said ‘Poor Black people suffered from not having strong leaders and Blacks should spend their money on education and NOT on disposable goods. Juan Williams – said ‘Many African leaders have lost touch with the Civil Rights movement of Self-Empowerment – they embrace the notions of “Victimhood”.
Dr Thomas Sowell, Larry Elder, Shelby Williams and Candice Owens debunk systemic racism in the USA – today and they blame the economic downfall of Blacks on the Welfare System.
Now there is a new historic awakening. Opposition leader Mr. Norton is calling on Blacks to use their skills to own businesses; using trade skills that Afro Guyanese had, and which was destroyed by the PNC government is to their advantage when resuscitated. The PNC ruled by emphasizing cooperative Socialism to guarantee safe salary handouts that contributed to the demise of Black Entrepreneurship.
To own business one not ONLY has to work hard but one has to to be innovative, thrifty, and to be able to take risks. Business entrepreneurship is not a 9 to 5 occupation.
I want to illustrate my personal account by piggybacking on
the ideas of Dr. Thomas Sowell who is one of African America’s top think tank capitalists’ economist whose research applies globally, to Trinidad and Guyana as to why Black business failed.
In Trinidad I recall my grandmother [Nanee] built 15 houses and my parents built five.
The building of these houses were done by 80% African workers.
These African workers, as In Guyana, were very skilled in many different trades, in building houses -carpenters,masons,cabinet and furniture makers [ joiners] blacksmiths,metal workers,cooks, bakers,tailors,shoemakers, druggists [ pharmacists] and were more skilled than the Indians because Indians at this time were still field
workers. Even most bakeries were Black owned and now are mostly owned by Chinese people. But something in the 1960s/1970s caused Blacks to start losing their skills and entrepreneurship. According to Dr. Sowell, the government interceded in African lives with welfare and corporate welfare [ Government Enterprises] commonly known as handouts.
Regardless of the hurdles and pains of indenture ships and PNC Black rule for 28 years the Indians unlike Africans did not use these drawbacks in their lives as an excuse to be failures in Guyana, Surinam and Trinidad. With the PNC stacking the public services with Africans, Indians had no choice but to go into business. In conclusion, the journey of some Guyana’s Black leaders’ behavior to
adopt a capitalist’s mindset to lead their people to the capitalist promised land has now begun by Mr Norton. Now they must teach their race business skills and refrain from who is to blame for Black downfall. It will eventually cause Africans to resurrect as entrepreneurs again. Know the pass, but do not stay in the pass.