Barbados version of Benedict Arnold, Multi-Party MP Hammie Lashley does not like Opposition Politics.

Speaking in jest on his triple defections, first from the Conservative Party to the Liberal Party and then back to the Conservative Party, the late British Prime Minister, Sir Winston Churchill, warned other political figures contemplating such action: “Anyone can rat, but it takes some ingenuity to re-rat.”

However, in describing Churchill’s party-hopping, the imperialist writer, Rudyard Kipling, was reported to have used some very unflattering language that bordered on the unprintable in polite society.

Questioning the quality of personalities attracted to elective politics worldwide, the French novelist, playwright and essayist, Albert Camus, was moved to say: “Politics and the fate of mankind are formed by men without greatness. Those who have greatness within them do not go in for politics.”

This writer recalled these two observations after reading comments attributed to Democratic Labour Party parliamentarian, Hamilton Lashley, which were carried in another section of the Press on January 15 under the caption: “Bees not for the poor.”

{FILE IMAGE} Barbadians may recall that following his defection to the Barbados Labour Party after the 1998 general election, Lashley showered praise on the then Prime Minister Owen Arthur and charged that the then Opposition Leader, David Thompson, would have never invited him to join his Cabinet.

However, thirteen years later, Lashley is now accusing the BLP of not caring for the poor after that party had introduced several programmes under his watch as Minister of Social Transformation which lifted several poor households out of poverty.

Now Lashley , obviously experiencing some stirrings of his conscience following Thompson’s death in October last year, and conscious of the fact that he was a beneficiary of Thompson’s generosity during his earlier sojourn in the DLP said: “If there is one person that should carry a hatred and grudge in his heart about me, it is David Thompson, but he never did.”

Based on Lashley’s latest mouthings, Barbadians should take note of the writings of the British philosopher, John Locke, who having recognised the innate selfishness of man said: “No part of man is naturally directed to the common good.”

Only the dim-witted among us would not see that Lashley does not enjoy opposition politics. Opposition politics for the non-professional class can be a time of harsh economic deprivation.

Neville Clarke

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