Liberal Democracy: A belief or a fashion?

May 3, 2010

What is Liberal Democracy then? Nowadays, is it a fashion or a belief?

I know, EDP, as a party of the post-revolutionary generation, had been advocating liberal democracy since its inception. In a way, it is fortunate to start from clean sheet.

During the 2005 election, the term Liberal democracy wasn’t even in the vocabulary of most campaigners.

Even within Kinijit with exception of EDP, no body was keen about it. In fact, Kestedamena was clear on its stand to say that they are social democrats. As to AEUP, well; I didn’t know what it stands for.

So what is happening since the last few weeks is “doing my head in”.

Every battle hardened communist, from Ato Ayelew Chamiso to Ato Gebru Asrat, are claiming to be born again liberal democrats. What is going on? Am I the only one getting confused?

Current politicians approach to politics appears like choosing a starter, a main course and dessert from a menu.

It is just like pointing your finger on the menu and say, I like Liberal democracy, with no private land ownership, with group rights toping and self-determination well-done.  By the way, make it quick and no FDI.

Particularly, Medrek’s approach to the selection from the menu is very entertaining. What happened to the old good days of proud and puffed-up revolutionary vanguards?  Is it a mid-life crisis, or a road to Damascus experience?

What made me pull my remaining hair is when some of the politicians’ stare straight into the camera, with no blink, to tell us that they are liberal democrats.

I grew up during the revolution and I know how the cadres of the Communist ideology used to behave. We were subjected to slogan and indoctrination that the world set on one way street heading towards communism. You know what, we almost believed it.

Some of them used to throw their arms until it came off its socket ball during the down with Imperialism ritual! Now all of a sudden, hallelujah, we all are liberal-democrats.

On a serious note, I am fine with Ato Tamrat Layne’s the road to Damascus experience. However what I find it hard to fathom is how one can switch from a hard-line communist into evangelist of the liberal democracy over night?

Mr. Liberal democrats Gebru Asrat, Merrara Gudena, Ayalew Chamiso etc sound too mouthful. Let’s think it is only meant to be for the election consumption and no further.

It seems to me that, at least,  the ruling party can boast of having some pride left in its soul to invent a transition arrangement called revolutionary-democracy.

Don’t get me wrong. I am not in any way opposing conversion but I expect some modesty to say the least.  At least, we expect from the die-hard communists turned into born again liberal democracy evengalists, a story like the day I met Liberal Democracy, like Ato Tamerat Layne! If not, what about setting up a revolutionary-liberals camp first, as a sort of transitional arrangement!

Don’t be mad at me. I know politics has been a favourable habitat for Deme -Merrare (bitter) politicians. But Liberal democracy allows a bit of satire and laughing at even big ideas. I am just testing.


14 comments on “Liberal Democracy: A belief or a fashion?

  1. EDP should be proud to guide the Ethiopian oppositions including EPRDF. We are not going to penalize them for plagiarism lool. EDP starts from the clean page where as those groups are trying to erase what was written and rewrite new idea, if they can do it we are happy but I do not think so. The question is how they are going to implement it? I do not think it is going to be compatible with them.

  2. I follow the British election over the BBC and it is full of satire and fun. Why should politics in Ethiopia has to be full of bitter people!! Could you smile please:-)

  3. I think Dr Merara is very good when it comes to smiling while speaking. Probabaly the only person who entertains me.

  4. Deaar Yared!
    Here is what a matuered politian means.
    It is very good observation and comment.
    It is known many of them have copied everything from EDPs alternative program, manifesto and now from Lidetus book. They never had written alternative policy or strategy defore. Some of them didn’t know what ideology means throughout their party life. Now they are copying every thing from EDP with out saying thank you. It was started during the establishment of Kinijit when they rename EDPs manifesto’ ‘Kinijit manifesto’ ‘with out quoting who contributed the whole manifesto.
    To tell the truth some of the individuals didn’t know how their policy contradicts with liberal democracy.
    Dear Yared ! The problem is not from the party leaders to me it is from the so called politically active people and educated people who just listened and accept them when they run here and there and contradict themselves now and then.
    It is good that they learn from EDP but attacking EDP is being merciless and inhuman.
    These people remind me a story about the selfish farmer who killed his hen which gives him golden egg every day assuming that he will get so many golden eggs at once.
    EDP shall win!

  5. Dear Yared !
    Grat analyses!!!
    Please teach those especially the vocal diaspora who consider themselves politicians and write nonsense about nonsenses.
    Let blind supporters learn some thing if they can learn.
    Thank you

  6. What is wrong changing positions, party affiliations. Dont forget that these are politiicians. Look at Mccain : now he is not maverick, now he is against immigration reform. They just mould themselves to the circumstances . This is inherited nature of politicians you have have to deal with.
    That is why you give a second chance for SEYE , Gebru and Negasso.

  7. Well do not forget Lidetu also travelled a long walk as most politicians you know mock in his long journey from AAPO to Altrnative Forces Council to EDP to EDP-Medhin to finally EDP.

    Let us hope that Lidetu’s journey is complete at least for now.

  8. Well it is my first time to read Ethiopian political satire in my life. We take politics to seriously too often. It is good for a change.

  9. Hallo, Ato Yared Haile-Meskel,Take first my warm greetings.I respect ur comments,you wrote in ur beloved web-site.You may get hand few readers,99% of TPLF cadres like you.I am not undermining all the TPLF cadres,I think there might be some who are good intellect persons,how-ever they are under the TPLF umbrella because of their Ethnic or other advantages(Economically)because the Ethiopian Economy is controlled and under a systematic looting by your mafia TPLF party.But such persons even don’t accept & agree with such a brutal dogmatic comment you wrote here.Look most of the Woyane high rank thief officials their childrens are living in the Western countries who are Liberal either social democratic countries,where the Human being is having full human rights are respected,and a real democracy,but not a revolutionary democracy as your doom mind thinks.Don’t you heard in the political debates the highly profile and educated ,smarts opposition how they briefed the audience on their political Ideas,special what does mean Liberal democracy.Such name for you,and your brutal party TPLF /EPRDF cadres it is allergic,b/s you have a fascistic & Leninism’s Ideology,which is tested the last 6(7)decades and did nothing.Such your Ideology is a master dictators Ideology which serve them to stay in power,by terrorizing their own peoples,using such arrogant and educationally poor doom cadres those who participated in the debate(Like Kuma Demeksa-his real name Taye Teklemariam),and like others shameful (hodam denkoro)I didn’t even want to mention their name who are not fit even to lie and to echo correctly what their Boss meles Zenawi inculcated them ..and all Ethiopian peoples from the child to elders know that you,your cadres,members who are gathered at and around the TPLF are anti-human,anti-democracy.fascists,dead communists,racists,killers,thieves..and even trying to stay in power using false propaganda and lie as an instrument.Now what are doing using such Woyane’s media to write such …a shameful comment..opposing a Liberal Democracy and admiring ur non-sense a revolutionary democracy.Shame for you,shame for your Party,shame for those illiterate cadres and followers.Believe or not time is approaching in which you and your types would get great lesson.
    The whole world know who you are ,and what your regime is doing in Ethiopia,how a repressive and human right enemies are ,…finally I advice you and other TPLF cadres to start reading at least ..History and politics of our wonderful world.

  10. ayewa Yared,
    Really, Social democrats are not talking about liberal democracy?
    You are too educated to be a blind tifozo of Lidetu etal. and walk over facts. Since you live in UK look in continental Europe how the social democrats are actually part of the Liberal Democracy system.

    One thing I hate about EDP and its supporters is you tend to insult our intelligence by continually claiming how your party is the only oracle of truth, your leaders are infalliable prophets, and political wizs etc.

    akbari wendmh

  11. hello “Habtegebriel”
    I admire your way of writting and also I could able to understand Ur personality, ur poletical Idiology , Identity as well as your level of thinking.
    to start with ur personality u seems very extrimist(chifen)
    Ur poletical Idiology Liberal Democrat or Social Democrat or communist etc like Medrek & Issayas Afowerki of Erettria
    Ur Identity Eretrian (Shabiya)
    Ur level of thinking I think lower than the leatly litrated weyane cadre
    any it is good to freely post ur nessence and rabish idias/ insults so that u may got such constructive suggestions as well us advices
    keep on expressing ur open personnality

  12. Hi Yared, first of all greetings from a fellow ethiopian living in london. I respect and celebrate the diverisity of views. However your view ( implied at least) that Lidetu is the only true liberal democrat betrays a very limited knowledge of the central ingredients of liberal democracy. Lidetu’s view that liberty exist in ethiopia would cause John Stuart Mills to turn in his grave. How can Lidetu be oblivious of what happens on a daily basis to our fellow citizens. I followed the debates very carefully and his musings make me puke because we know that everthing he does is calculated to endorse EPRDF as a true democati party. His third way bullshit is just poppycock ( esxcuse my frenh). You are a learned gentleman surely you must wrestle with your conscious when in face of oppression, your leader try to congratulate EPRDF for their development startegy and channel his energy and his skills to demonise Medrek et al.I am struck by how the Apartheid regime and the Musolini govt had a god record when it came to infrastructure building, i don’t remember many people congratulating them I agree with you, they are not the most enlightened politicians but for your leader to unleash his venom on them when they have not killed or oppressed anyone seems to be a rather curious state of affairs. i ask you to spare a thought for our fellow citizens while all of us living in a liberal demccracy enjoy the freedom from oppression. The fight in ethiopia is more basic than providing an intelectual examination of the merits of libeal democracy. I am sure you are as outraged as I am by the lack of the rule of law, appalling human rights record which exist in ethiopia. Let me propose something which i expect would offend many. Let’s try something along the lines of what took place in South Africa. Tell all the woyane and their cronies they can keep their ill gotten gains, we will forgive their crimes ( misdeeds) and they in turn agree to subject themselves to the will of the people ( free election). For the sake of the next generation we must stop the cycle of violence.
    respectfully yours.

  13. ያጥወለውለኛል ላሉት ምናልባት እየቀላቀሉ እየጠጡ ይሆናል እንጂ ክርክሩ በህዘቡ ዘንድ ከፍተኛ ተወዳጅነት አግኝቷል፡፡ ግን ምናልባት እውነታውን ሲጋቱት ሰውነቶት አልቀበል ብሎት እየተጣላዎት ሊሆንም ይችላል፡፡

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