My dear Kacvey,
Lately in the market place of the City of Tonlé Buon Mouk, there have been a lot of merchants who, through their microphones and loudspeakers, sell promises for victories like “les marchands qui vendent des poissons en mer.” They have their kiosks and booths managed by salesmen with only words displayed and broadcast in air as their wares.
The ruling merchants are selling their hollow promises of winning the majority of voices at the next legislative elections with more than 60 seats; they even boast that should the elections be held nowadays, they would score better than in July 2013; they sell their imaginary victory to the consumers who have no convictions and confidence to buy it; they sell their continued ambition to remain in power albeit after more than 30 years in government; they even fan the flame “après moi, le déluge” to scare the people as if they use alchemy to fight off the ghost; they instill the specter of war between Khmer or their neighbors if they are voted out – hadn’t Khmer have enough war between 1970 and 1993?
The opposing merchants, having nothing else to do in their non-working place, are also selling empty promises of victory with majority and bigger margin than in July 2013; they sell their claim for unknown victory to people to whom they never contribute anything tangible to their life and welfare; they boost their pitch of “free and fair elections” as if “free and fair elections” is god’s command; against their own inner heart, they even challenge themselves that they would quit politics if they did not win (BTW, who drafted them to be the leaders of their party or in other words didn’t they themselves self-draft and self-elect to that position?) they boast that they will reorganize or revamp the justice system, the education system, the lands reform etc … but without presenting a sketch on how to proceed and do it; they even promote an unfair competition by belittling the newly established political formations/parties; the one commodity they haven’t displayed for sale yet is a trip to Freedom Park, should 2018 dress them in 2013’s clothes.
So, Kacvey, since a coin has only 2 sides, let see one side at a time:
Head – It is a long, long time from now till 2018, with 3 Chaul Chnams, 3 Christmas, 3 springs etc … Would you or any sane mind tell your neighbor that in 2018 you will win a lottery jackpot when you haven’t even bought a single ticket yet, and you have already spent the money? Well, to put it simply, you would not, because you would not count on something before it happens, the same way as any farmer would not tell you that his 2018 harvest would be such and such tonnage! Any politician who counts the chickens before they are hatched is a false prophet; he must be living in a world of fallacy.
Tail – Why do they sell Cambodia’s future to Cambodians now for their own future? “Fear” is the word and the factor. They fear the future which will not be clement to them; the fear of losing dictates them to hide the fear behind the curtain of promises of unknown and uncertain victory; they fear the numbers that will, one day, come out of a serious and scientific polls and ghastly surprise and shock them; they fear their own actions and non-actions that betray the trust of the people; last but not least, they fear of and for themselves as they are so scared to see their natural grey and ageing hair in the mirror that they have to falsify the course of nature with application of black dye! … they can dye the hair shaft as much as they like but the shaft never betrays the root!
Kacvey, as many Cambodians and you know in advance, there can’t and won’t ever be 2 winners in 2018, therefore right after the poll closes its doors, sabers rattling – as some people already preface as war – cannot be excluded from the arena and political hurricane created by them will no doubt affect the entire Cambodian population. And please remember, as soon as your ballot is cast, you do not exist anymore in their eyes, heart and mind. Everything they will be talking about and concerning in will all be about themselves and the power they will want to grab. You grow the rice by yourself, you cook the rice for them, and you serve it on their table for them to enjoy themselves selfishly. Whatever you’ll do after that, it is your business and not theirs, even if you go to jail for having supported them.
Millions of voters will be solicited with kind words and promises of sand castles in Spain from now on towards the elections. However, the day following the elections only the 123 will be the subject of glory, success, fame and future fortune. Do the math, dear friend!
Anyhow if it pleases them to put their cart before their horses, so be it … for them!
Until then, you may wonder whether these politicians have heard about the famous Khmer tale of “A chéy chack smock.” If they haven’t, this would then be a good idea for a present for their next birthday!
As for us, let have our feet on the ground and remind ourselves with these words by Miguel de Cervantes: “freír de los huevos lo verá!“