Kalaki’s Korner: Political Cockroaches

‘Your trouble is,’ said Kupela, ‘you live in an idealized world. You’re always judging government performance against how you think it ought to be. Then you get in a rage because everything is being done wrong.’
          ‘Huh!’ I snorted. ‘What a foolish thing to say. How else can things be judged, except in terms of what they ought to be?’
          ‘You should first try to understand what’s going on. All you can talk about is invisible human rights, rule of law gone missing, blah blah. You put on a wrong pair of spectacles, causing you see the things which nobody else can see, but failing to see what everybody else can see. Then you get in a rage because people can’t understand what you’re talking about, and you can’t understand what they’re talking about.’
          ‘What a way to talk to your father!’ I said sternly. ‘Me, the one that brought you up, and showed you how to understand the world! Now you claim I can’t see anything! Look around you! Do you not see what I see? Is this not the house in which you were brought up?’
          ‘Yes it is,’ said Kupela. ‘So let’s take this house as an example! Who lives here, in this house?’
          ‘You know the answer very well,’ I scoffed. ‘Since you left, there’s only me and your mother.’
          ‘A very limited point of view,’ she laughed. ‘This house is full of flies, mosquitoes, spiders, geckoes, carpet mites and thousands of cockroaches. But you, with your limited humanitarian gaze, can see only yourself and mummy.’
          ‘So is the world more understandable from the perspective of a cockroach? Can I understand the behaviour of the government by observing cockroaches?’
          ‘Well,’ said Koops, ‘since you’ve made the suggestion, let’s give it a try. After all, you are always trying to understand people in terms of rational behaviour, but the behaviour of politicians is instinctive rather than rational. More like a cockroach.
          ‘So go ahead!’ I chuckled. ‘Suppose that politicians are really huge cockroaches! What does that explain?’
          ‘It explains a new minister landing in parliament, elected by nobody but appointed by somebody, crawling in through the back door, and declaring he’s come to eat.’
          ‘I did criticize him,’ I said, ‘for saying that!’
          ‘You criticized him because you can’t understand him. You thought he’d come to render service for the benefit of the people. So you couldn’t understand what he was saying and you got yourself into a rage. If you had worn a better pair of spectacles you would have realized that he was really a huge brainless cockroach, and you would have understood his behaviour as entirely normal.’
          ‘Huh,’ I said. ‘Can your cockroach theory explain anything else?’
          ‘Ever stepped into the kitchen at night, turned on the light, and seen cockroaches crossing the floor? Parliament is just the same. Political cockroaches will always cross the floor if there’s more food on the other side.’
          ‘But they are also there to serve the people,’ I said. ‘That’s why we put them there.’
          ‘You’re wearing completely wrong spectacles,’ laughed Kupela. ‘Cockroaches want to get into government to capture the treasury, so they can sit and chew, and become monster political cockroaches, not like the half-starved little relatives who live in our houses.’
          ‘But at elections they promise us development, food, and an end to poverty.’
          ‘People think the big fat political cockroaches are talking to them, but actually they’re talking to the little domestic cockroaches who are everywhere, and listening very carefully.’
          ‘So they don’t have our interests at heart?’
          ‘We are just the useful idiots that keep the whole system working. The political economy of cockroachism works by each fat political cockroach using us to produce food and bring it into our houses, where most of it is stolen by his little relatives at the domestic level. Every fat parasitic cockroach has a billion little parasitic cockroaches feeding off him. But none of them do any work. We humans produce the food but the cockroaches eat most of it. We humans are allowed just enough food to keep us working so that we can feed the parasites.’
          ‘This theory can’t explain everything. I mean, why do we have schools and hospitals? These are provided for us humans by us humans, not for the cockroaches.’
          ‘Ha ha,’ laughed Kupela, ‘You’re really so innocent. Schools are there to brainwash us to believe that we humans are really in charge, that we live in a human-centred world, and to see these ghastly monster political cockroaches as fellow humans beings. And you, My poor Daddy, you really sucked it all in!’
          ‘Hmm, seems I was given the wrong spectacles. But what about hospitals?’
          ‘Hospitals are the main feeding centres for orphaned cockroaches. Have you never noticed that there a thousand times more cockroaches than patients in our hospitals? The walls are kept filthy to make them feel at home. But hospitals are also there to kill off the old and sick humans who are no longer fit to produce food for the cockroaches.’
          ‘So where do human rights come into this?’
          ‘Nowhere!’ she laughed. ‘This is a biological model of the political economy, and it works as a self-perpetuating and well-balanced symbiotic ecosystem. Any talk of human rights would upset the whole system, and reveal that humans are being used as slaves by parasitic cockroaches.’
          ‘Good gracious,’ I said. ‘So you really believe that this is the truth?’
          ‘Truth?’ she laughed. ‘Truth?’ she laughed again. ‘Poor old Daddy! You’ve just put on a worse pair of spectacles!’
Kalaki’s blog is found here

Share this post