Monday, July 4, 2011

Are we there yet?

The past few days have been full of seemingly disjointed events, but - in my opinion- they simply confirm my earlier suspicions that our current state is not a revolution, but merely the stage of strong protests. What has not been done far outweighs what was achieved.

Of course most will say that it is normal to be frustrated at this stage and all that other pep-talk, I understand pep-talk and support it wholeheartedly. I give it all the time when talking to frustrated people in Tahrir, the office and the street. But personally I strongly oppose the opinion that it takes 50 years for a revolution to be finished, this was good in the 19th. century and don't bring up Eastern Europe or Latin America examples also, that was last century over and above the fact that these countries needed to change everything political and economic. We do not need to do all that, we need to make Deep and Drastic reforms to an existing system.

The core of the current non-achievement is our chronic disastrous mismanagement of  revolutionary resources as well as other affairs. I'm biased towards management since I have been doing it for half my life, and this is how I analyse any situation. There is an inherent resistance to change in all establishments, bring a new manager in and see what happens. Everybody will do their utmost to make the new manager perform like the old -even hated- one. Change has to be swift, well conducted and consistent. Otherwise; you end up with a mediocre solution to any major problem. and this is exactly where we are at; "Mediocre". We did not even change the management! Our Cabinet is 90%  "Establishment"!  Jul8 8th. is trying to patch up the leaking pipe of public support with the duct tape of demands of minimum wage, swift fair trials of the murderers and some corrupted members of the "Current" regime, which has not been changed

Let's look at July 8th. planned sit-in demands, they are the same demands of Feb. 12th. (If not fewer) My expectation is that it's going to be a strong message, but certainly not as strong as it should, Why? simply because we have lost the most important asset -The Media- which is the strongest and most counter revolutionary weapon. All the support of the masses has been left to the same old propaganda machine to manipulate and distort public opinion. While now the major focus is on the Interior Ministry, a futile and effort consuming battle with little results. Apply the media pressure on any "Establishment" and see what happens. It's not enough to have a few hawling reporters in very few semi-independent newspapers and TV channels, while there are over 30 TV channels and 50 newspapers and magazines bombarding people with pure propaganda.

We have also lost the momentum needed to overhaul the media machine, we do not have a strong cause now to demand that needed overhaul and we will not get it. If we write a small piece of parallel history, and the media was truly purged and controlled by the people instead of the "Establishment"  in 6 months we would have had -at least- a half reformed police force and judiciary system, not to mention avoided other extremely harmful things like leaving Zakaria Azmy to freely "do his thing" in the presidential palace for a whole month!  . Political whores like the "MBs", Salafis and other "Parties" would have been very careful who to align their selves with and the SCAF would also not dare to be performing against people's wishes, instead; now they are the masters and manipulators. We certainly would not have this farcical argument about Constitution or elections come first and our economy would be in a much better shape.

There is a lot of talk about the appearance of the Tahrir people now and how the "Quality" of people has changed! This observation is correct. The people who have started on January 25th. have mostly withdrawn, feeling that they have performed their role and others simply gotten bored or frustrated while the activists have gotten fragmented into opposing coalitions and parties. Only the "Simple" sincere people remained hardcore and dedicated to the cause. Without getting accused of  being "Bourgeois" or other fancy terms, these "Simple" people come from environments that hold physical prowess in high esteem and macho is manifested in a generally violent attitude and loud voice, (as a matter of fact it's a part of our culture and has nothing to do with your financial abilities or class, observe how so called "Classy" people behave in any traffic accident). These "Simple" people were the foot soldiers of the revolution and they still are. It's the "Generals" who have failed.

I See July 8th. as an attempt to salvage the situation, Of course we will go on getting some things done in our own meandering way, but it will take much more sacrifices and longer than it should have had.

I once argued -and still believe- that Tahrir should have formed committees for each demand instead of these useless coalitions, each committee should be commissioned with only one job. One for Media, another for MOI, a third for Judiciary, Education, Martyrs Rights, Injured Rights and so on and so forth. I'm going to try and push this idea the coming few days and hope to get some people convinced.

See you all in Tahrir July 08.