Blog: Changing Faces
The two world wars ended and brought in their wake a trail of social transformations in the rest of the world. The era of colonizers and their imperialistic and arrogant reign over countries which they deemed as uncivilized were floundered, not without deep social dislocations. The partition in India, the decolonization of Africa, the emergence and the fall of communism were products of the severe impact of certain forceful, momentous historical events. Politically the post-war world has never been the same as it was earlier.
We have travelled long psychological distances. Since the killing of six million Jews, the boost given to experimental science during the war period has led to new avenues of awareness.
New technology, a result of the spirit of military innovativeness, has added its dose of novelty by changing the parameters of consciousness itself. Time and space have changed their configuration. For instance, the cell phone has made man placeless. You do not need to know the name of a person. Figures will do in a world which is digitally aware.
The impact of poor war economies on the world is another interesting area of study. We have moved from socially regulated economies to a liberalisation that has made bankers become ‘banksters’ and take advantage of their fiscal intelligence to dupe a credulous world that has faith in financial wizards. These confidence tricksters have converted daily robbery into policy and have made gullible clients sign contracts of their pauperization with sheepish innocence and starry eyed idealism.
At a moment when governments have bailed out sinking companies whether in America or in Mauritius, the imperialistic crooks of insurance companies have served themselves heavy bonuses with poor man’s money. We are today going through the dark eclipse of the golden era of capitalism that has spawned individualists’ conceit.
The corruption in Mauritius or in China is not the subterfuge used by the poor to obtain a few favours. It is the ploy of the rich to become richer at the expense of a world that has been hoodwinked by speculations, hedging masters, risk taking specialists and a hundred richer cheerleaders of financial services.
Success has changed the fond ways leading to their destination. The values of yore are today the substance of mockery. What was viewed with sinister suspicion yesterday has now become holy. Machiavellism has been the means of perverting the nobility of human action by sinister intentions of waiving moral agenda for profit’s sake. Today it has been converted into a principle of behaviour, a code of conduct. Otherwise one can be beaten by the rival. We are hesitant to define the values that should guide our action for fear of being known as retrograde and retrogressive.
Honesty is naiveté, kindness is stupidity, and empathy is sentimental idealism. Today, they tell you to lie if a lie can produce a positive result, never to make a promise because you are bound to break them. We have lost the anchor that moved our bark near the bank of the river.
The bark is drifting and there is an ambivalence that makes many exploit the other sharp side of the knife which now has two sharp sides. Being corrupt and winning the palm of victory does not accompany shame and guilt. No. The victor who has won the fruits of sin is an exhilarant as ever.
Mauritius is not spared of the metamorphosis taking place in the world. At the time when we give an ipad to a child, we have connected him to the world. He is at the mercy of the forms that manufacture new values, new codes of conduct, Hip-Hop was not known to the Western World. When Asia introduced it, it was appropriated by the world and it became policy. It is incumbent upon us to brace ourselves for change.