Monday, July 26, 2010

Wyclef For President? I'd rather not.

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What does it take to run a country? A Grammy? A mobile-phone commercial? The ability to create incredible guitar riffs? If so then all these rumors about Wyclef Jean running for President of Haïti may not be that crazy.

Already fuelling debates online, on talk radio & at social gatherings, the news of Wyclef’s impending announcement to run for President raises an important question: what does Haïti really need? I, of course, don’t have the complex answer.

The charismatic singer has launched remarkable initiatives in Haïti and his impassionate pleas over the years have helped put a much needed spotlight on the Island. With all the influence he already has and the mobilization he can create, one wonders why Wyclef would feel the need to run for office. Politics is the Art of Compromise, and even Wyclef wouldn’t be able to escape that.

Early supporters of the maybe-candidate will tell you he’ll bring change. Sure, but what will he be able to do in office that he can’t accomplish now? A country’s power lays in its citizens, especially when they are rich & powerful.

Oprah was once asked if she ever thought of running for President of the United States. Someone sitting next to her quickly replied: “Why would she? It would be a step down.”  Same goes for you Wyclef: keep on doing what you’re doing & leave the rat race to others who get high on protocol & titles.

I adressed the matter this morning on CBC's Daybreak. Listen here (at 13:55) :


Martine | Le Groupe Milagro said...

My older & wiser brother just commented, upon reading this post, that "Wyclef can learn the language, Martine". And he's right. So that part of my comment was foul. I however, stand by everything else.

Anonymous said...

we want Haiti to move Foward. With all the bright haitian minds, can't we do better?amongst the doubts about his charity,can we trust him to lead a country? will he learn to speak french? too many of us need actual reasons to support this idea..not just run on our emotions .... he has to represent the future of Haiti, speak to the world on Haiti's behalf ..does he?how is he different?

Peter B said...

In my opinion, there is no way Haiti is going forward with the actual government.

The country is still in the same stage of devastation (and getting worse) 6 months after the earthquake. Barely nothing has changed since then, the people are still living under inhuman conditions, nothing is actually done by the actual government for its own people, International NGO are the ones keeping the country from slipping into total chaos by providing water and food to the most needy.

But the "government" in place is pleading "national sovereignty" as an excuse for refusing a TRANSIENT international government (including a large portion of competent Haitians) that would provide structure, advice, law, order, etc...and billions of dollars for the reconstruction and decentralisation of the country.
...we all know that "national sovereignty" has nothing to do with their refusal...

Is the government in place suggesting it can organize a democratic, credible and safe presidential election?…how could anyone believe such crap? How can any credible presidential candidate believe the (putative?) november election with be anything but a sad joke?

In the setting of chaos, incompetence, and inadequacy that prevails, how can Haiti ever prepare for an election? how can anyone believe in its respect of democracy? in its impartiality? where will the people vote? how will they control ballots? who will ensure security? who will REALLY be in charge? who will observe and ensure voting will actually be democratic? these are only a few basic questions that cannot be answered with certainty...4 months before the actual election!!!!

In my opinion, unless an international government (including a important number of competent Haitians from Canada-USA-Haiti and other European countries) is in charge for a few years, taking responsibility for rebuilding all national institutions , providing basic necessities for the people and reconstructing this society with a new philosophy, AND at the same time recruiting COMPETENT Haitian residents to govern the country after this initial and basic reconstruction stage, nothing will ever change...

Wyclef Jean could certainly be a great ambassador for Haiti, a talented artist who loves and helps his country without a doubt...but why in hell could he be president? has he ever shown any credentials or competency for governing a country? besides his patriotism and the fact that he is already rich and therefore would probably not steal the country’s money, why do people think he could be a politician?....if Wyclef was to be president, he could be elected on Friday, shot on a Saturday and buried on Sunday...but in real life, he

Peter B said...

....wont be back to work on Monday!