Some footnotes about the pre-election circus

Some of our best loved island musicians climbed on the band wagon of the green party. Both Johnathan Thiel and Michael Lampe, two titan musicians, song writers, poets and bottomless sources of inspiration, support and work for the MinPres.

I find it cynical.

Jonathan Thiel, also known as Jeon and Biggie, was exploited first. Mind you he has 42,297 FB followers, this is a major local influencer! Early in the election season he was hired by the green party to perform at their public rallies, in various neighborhoods, warming audiences up with his Dushi Bida song, before the MinPres emerged, so that he could bombard the already feel-good audience with his accomplishments.

I did not mind that much, because Jeon is after all an artist, and can be hired to perform by just about anyone, anywhere, endorsing any product including Bright Bakery, Burger King, Palmera Rum and connectivity by Setar.

But then I was surprised to find out last weekend that my idol, musical genius Michael Lampe actually joined the green list as a candidate, which took the shenanigans to a different level.

I called to ask.

“I felt,” he said,”that at this time of my life, this is a good move for me; take my music to a bigger platform, create opportunities for other Arubans, inspire and be inspired, give back to the community, serve my country in a broader sense.”

His heart is obviously in the right place. He is interested in music, and heritage, and would make am effective Minister of Culture in a fictional world.

But the vehicle he picked to promote his personal evolution is a political party that mortgaged this island’s future by creating a humongous public debt, currently at about 85 percent of GDP.

I also bet he has zero ambition to actually sit in parliament and manage this country’s daily affairs. He probably has no intention to serve on the legislative branch, making good laws to safeguard our well-being.

And it pisses me off that I love everything he does. He repurposed an old bus, the so-called nostalgic school bus that picked him up for the ride to school as a young boy, in Savaneta. The old bus was outfitted with glossy green stickers and transformed into a travelling boutique, a green market, where green tees and caps can be bought by his fans, converted into voters, just living to escort their political candidate all decked out in green to the registration point, where all parties, at a designated hour, must show up and declare their readiness to run for office.

Where is my vomiting bowl? I need it.

The clever hashtags; the shameless use of the beloved music, both don’t sit well with me. Just saying.

Not to be left behind, an MMA fighter, the Aruban Assassin, Gregory Milliard just joined the ranks of POR as a candidate. Are you kiddin’ me?

And talking about those tees and caps, for sale to voters: We understand some were ordered by the MinInfra, and smuggled in from Venezuela where printing is cheaper, transported to Aruba on a banana boat in an effort to avoid paying import duty. Nice, really nice.

Without being cynical, the MinPres family members have a tee shirt printing plant, why don’t you assign the job to EMCO? They would have done a good job, why go to Venezuela?

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July 29, 2017
Rona Coster