(printed in the Samoa Observer 17 November 2010)
The PM’s rambling and outbursts are indicative of an old man with a confused and flustered mind resulting from obvious discombobulation. I think TV3 is quietly having a blast and a feeding frenzy - which only get better and more ambrosial - with our PM. The outside media can actually have him pilloried if they want. In the US - the media kingdom of the world - this type of “polimediarama” is a media’s bacon; it’s a carcass to the media vultures.
What’s pathetic is that with his vainglorious and lordly attitude especially of calling all other people stupid and idiotic, the PM has now become intransigent and has perhaps severed any lifeline of advice and counsel from an advisory body (if there’s one) and from those ( if there are) who may be responsible for damage control in the PM’s Office. (Then again this is a divinely appointed government which is infallible and therefore does not need to be corrected.)
The PM needs to at least be aware that in today’s media-saturated world, there’s an expression that says: “He who controls the media controls the world.”
Now that can be interpreted in the PM’s favor being the one who controls the media - and everything else - in Samoa, therefore he can still weather this drama and crisis domestically at least. However, he should not underestimate the power and influence of the outside media in casting him as being audacious, arrogant and bullheaded. In other words, domestically, he may come out unscathed and still, amazingly, win elections.
Conversely, at the same time, he can be viewed as a stinker by the outside world, let alone by Samoa’s closest friends of NZ and Australia. Such effects can hurt his political career but more adversely his reputation as an individual.
Think local and think global. Punimatatogo plus Puniloa represent a balanced, wise and discerning “core”. Samoa is not independent in the strictest and more inclusive sense of the word.
Lastly, a simple word of wisdom: “It’s nice to be important, but it’s more important to be nice.” (“E lelei ona avea ma se tagata taua, ae sili atu ona taua le avea ma se tagata lelei.”)
This should be an effective antidote for the petulant, belligerent and unbridled PM.