On our own again

Published On: March 20, 2020 09:45 AM NPT By: Guffadi

We had an earthquake and our government was nowhere to be found for a few days while we, the people, were helping each other out. We had a blockade and we were left to go searching for cooking gas and fuel in the black market while the government was, as usual, busy doing nothing. And now, with the coronavirus pandemic, our government is once again ill-prepared to tackle the spread of the virus and it seems like, as always, it does not have any plans to help us if we face the same crisis that other countries around the world have been fighting for a while now. 

It seems that our government’s job is to only collect taxes and then use it to pay our slimy contractors, lazy civil servants, and crazy politicians. We are never short of cash when it comes to handing out free checks to cadres and cousins but we beg the bideshis for everything from ambulances to school buses and even tents.

Why can’t our government ask for help from the Amrikis to set up an emergency command center to deal with natural disasters and diseases? We can ask the Chinese and the Indians to help us as well. But no, our government is short-sighted and asks for small things while it forgets to look at the bigger picture.

We, the people, have been left to fend for ourselves time and again. We saw it happen during the earthquake, the blockade and now with the coronavirus pandemic. Yes, our healthcare system is not equipped to handle any crisis that affects millions of us. And so, we have to take care of ourselves—our government will be unable to come to our aid if we face a similar situation like in China or Italy. 

So, let us not expect our government to handle this crisis well by managing its resources because the government uses its resources only for the thulo mancheys and not for the common folks. We are already facing shortages of cooking gas and fuel even though the government has not stopped the supply. Where did all the fuel and cooking gas go? Why isn’t our government after our gas dealers and petrol pump wallahs and only after a few folks who are hoarding thousands of masks?

Talking about masks, do we really think a mask is going to prevent the spread of the coronavirus? What about awareness? Yes, those infected are better off wearing masks and keeping a safe distance from others. But, of course, we see our prime minister going back to Baluwatar where he doesn’t wear a mask but everyone around him does. The vulnerable ones should wear the masks, not the other way around. But who is going to tell that to him? And will he even listen? 

Some of our municipalities are producing hand sanitizers and masks for the public. Kudos to them but look at our federal government and how it seems to be out of touch with reality! The coronavirus will continue to affect global economy for a year. We will not have tourists in our land till next year. Our migrant workers will not be able to go overseas to make some extra dinars and ringgits to take care of their families.

2020 is going to be tough for all of us. It’s time to go into the ‘earthquake mode’ and take care of one another. We really don’t need much. A simple dal bhat will be enough. It’s time for our wards to stock up on rice and lentils and probably have a public kitchen ready. We can volunteer to deliver dal, bhat and tarkari to our fellow ward members.

Yes, it’s time to save some money because we don’t know how long this will last but we hope that it will come under control before the end of this year but till then we must remain strong, united and look out for one another while the government just begs for extra dough to set up a command center, or for health kits and other things which will never be used and will probably be sold or gifted to near and dear ones just like the tents provided by the bideshis during the earthquake.

So, when will our government learn? Well, most probably never because we do not hold our buffoons accountable for anything. We vote, we pay taxes while they use our taxes for their own personal benefits and our votes to gain power and rule over us like the feudal lords of the Middle Ages. So, let us just leave our government alone and not have any expectations from it whatsoever.

Let us just learn to protect ourselves, make our own sanitizers, take preventive measures and expect the virus to eventually be under control all over the world.  And until then, let’s eat our plain old basic soul food, our dal bhat and spend quality time with our families. Yes, we may earn less this year but as long as we have our families, we will have the strength to get over this as well. This perhaps might be the one area where we might not need our government at all. On second thoughts, have we ever? 

Guffadi is a grumpy old man who blogs at guffadi.blogspot.com. You can contact him at maguffadi@gmail.com.

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