State-funded dinosaur Mario Azzopardi is calling for street protests to reverse Justyne Caruana’s resignation. He’s angry because his idols fell like flies. He remembers a time when he could call protesters bitches and whores. He remembers a time when the heroes of the mythology in his head were immortal and unbeatable. He remembers a time when Joseph Muscat, Keith Schembri, Konrad Mizzi, Chris Cardona, Neville Gafà, Lawrence Cutajar, Justyne Caruana were people of influence and power and he could hide behind them.
Now he’s feeling a bit more exposed. If the new rules of conduct for public affairs approach levels of expected decency for a liberal democracy he’ll soon run out of patrons. He’s frantic that at this rate Edward Scicluna, Owen Bonnici, Peter Grech, Jason Micallef, Robert Musumeci, Tony Zarb, Josef Caruana and others might end up powerless as well. And then who’s going to enable Mario Azzopardi to cash his iced buns for the old service he is still capable of providing at his dotard’s state: harassing and intimidating protesters?
He has to blame someone. He can’t blame those who resigned. If for him Joseph Muscat could never do wrong, he’s not going to change that view just because Joseph Muscat resigned.
So, he blames protesters. You give us too much credit.
We protested for more than 2 years and perhaps now Mario Azzopardi finds we weren’t quite as crazy as he had said and thought we were. But Joseph Muscat’s regime collapsed because truth prevailed and reached the ears of people less obtuse than Mario Azzopardi.
Joseph Muscat did not resign when protesters asked him to. He’d have gone sometime in October 2017 if we could really have our way. He resigned when his deeds, his omissions and the evil that gripped his office and possessed his political power reached the ears of the world. It started with journalists of the world. Then NGOs who campaign worldwide for press freedom and democracy. Then international organisations. Every time Joseph Muscat hoped it would stop there and every time it went one step up until it reached the ears of Joseph Muscat’s colleagues around the table of European heads of government.
Joseph Muscat did not resign when protesters asked him to. He resigned after Yorgen Fenech was arrested when the truth of what Daphne Caruana Galizia reported all those months and years ago finally reached the ears of people who voted for the Labour Party in 2017. The crystal hegemony shattered.
Joseph Muscat did not resign when protesters asked him to. He resigned when he could no longer command authority in his own cabinet and when staying on became more dangerous for his chances of dodging the law than if he left and negotiated his exit against preserving Labour Party power with his compliance and for himself impunity and immunity.
Joseph Muscat did not resign because we called for people to march in the street. And people did not march in the street because we called them to. People would have marched in their tens of thousands whether we called them or not. We provided a stage, flags, some posters and whistles. But people brought their own anger, indignation, frustration and desire to secure change.
We have no illusions that we have ‘followers.’ We’re not shepherds and those people protesting in November and December are anything but sheep. Many of them openly expressed antipathy with some of the organisers of the protest. Many of them openly declared they could not imagine themselves agreeing about anything else with people they rubbed shoulders with during the protests.
That too is why Joseph Muscat resigned: because he saw that his declared political ambition of bringing about unity in the country had succeeded in the last way he hoped it would, in unity against him.
Mario Azzopardi thinks he can put up a post on Facebook, use upper case for effect, and thousands would march in the street to dictate terms to the government. That’s because he thinks that’s what we can do. He gives us too much credit.
Truth does prevail and protest does help carry the voice of truth when nothing else works because the government seeks to suppress it including by car bomb. But what is essential is not the protest or the voice. What matter is being truthful. What matters is being right.
Those requirements are not on Mario Azzopardi’s side. So, all he’s left with is his rants on Facebook.
In the meantime, he should be pleased to know that we’ll be sticking around to encourage the government in any which way we can to guarantee good conduct in public life, free speech, a guarantee of individual and community rights and basic decency in the way this community behaves with itself and the rest of the world. Mario Azzopardi, sadly, has nothing to contribute to that.