What Went Wrong? ‘We’ never had our war!

Go Lean Commentary

War … what is it good for?
Absolutely nothing! – Song: Edwin Starr – Motown 1969; see Appendix below.

Well, not so fast.

This started just as a “catch phrase”, but now it has emerged as a fact in Economic History:

A crisis is a terrible thing to waste.

So what is war good for? Providing a crisis that can be exploited to reform and transform society.

That’s it; wrap it up; we can now summarize so many changes in world history as they manifested as a result of war. Consider these examples:

War Conflict Take-a-way
Napoleonic Wars | 1803 – 1815
Spanish New World assumed independence from Spain. This was true in North America (Mexico), Central America and South America. But the Caribbean territories did not abdicate from “Mama Espana” at that time.
Latin America Independence
American Civil War | 1860 – 1865
The New World was premised on Slavery, exploiting the African race as a free labor source in all the Americas. This abhorrent institution would have definitely ended, one way or another. “The arc of history leans towards justice”. After the US Civil War – 625,000 dead White Men – no other wars were necessary in the New World; all Euro-influenced governments whittled slavery into extinction, one way or another.
Abolition & Emancipation
Great War / World War I 1914 – 1919
This war addressed the boiling point of class-ism in Europe – the Haves versus the Have-Nots – the Nobility System (Dukes, Counts, Bourgeoisie, etc.) did not survive the reconciliation that led to the cessation of conflicts. Communism emerged as a manifestation of the demand for equality.
Gender Equality; Worker Rights; Egalitarianism
World War II / Cold War | 1939 – 1955
This war was a sequel to WW I; whatever remaining issues that were deferred in the WW I reconciliations were pushed forward for reckoning; think: Colonialism (in Africa, Asia and the Americas), Racial Supremacy, Human Rights assurances.
Human Rights; Decolonization; Majority Rule / Universal Suffrage
End of Cold War | 1991 – 2016
The return to Nationalism in Europe did not provide governing solutions or the needed multi-racial reconciliations. That bill came due, as demonstrated with the Balkans Conflict (Bosnia, Serbia, etc.). A Migrant Crisis emerged for all States that refused to transform: think Middle East Islamic Fundamentalism, Sovereign Debt Crisis (Greece, etc.), and Brexit.
Economic Liberalization; Free Trade; Free Movement

In no shape or form are we rationalizing, justifying or excusing war. But, it is what it is!

Where there is conflict – blood on the streets – people tend to finally be motivated to remediate and mitigate the risks and threats for the conflict to ever rekindle. So this premise is true:

It is only at the precipice that people change.

This is why we can declare with such confidence that one of the things that went wrong in the Caribbean, is “we never had our war“. From the foregoing examples, all the reform and transformation that took place from these crises, did NOT benefit the Caribbean as we had “No War” here. (The Cuban Revolution ushered in Communism, but all the stewards of the Cuban people – culture, politics and commerce – simply fled; they left the island to the rebels, so the needed reform on societal values never took place – Cuba is still in “Freeze-Frame” from 1959).

This commentary continues the July series from the movement behind the book Go Lean…Caribbean. This submission, 2-of-6 on the theme “What Went Wrong?” focuses on Caribbean history and why we still have many of the same defects that other societies – think North America and Europe yes, but even India and China – have already remediated. The full catalog:

  1. What Went Wrong? Asking ‘Why’ is Important
  2. What Went Wrong? ‘We’ never had our war!
  3. What Went Wrong? ‘7 to 1’ – Caribbean ‘Less Than’
  4. What Went Wrong? ‘Be our Guest’ – The Rules of Hospitality
  5. What Went Wrong? Failing the Lessons from Infrastructure 101
  6. What Went Wrong? Losing the Best; Nation-building with the Rest

In this series, reference is made to the need for a comprehensive roadmap for elevating the societal engines of the Caribbean member-states. We do not want war! But we want to make the progress that is possible when society reforms and transforms. And we want to do this without a war. The movement behind the Go Lean book asserts that this progress is possible. See how this theme was developed in many previous Go Lean commentaries; see a sample list here:

http://www.goleancaribbean.com/blog/?p=16477 Transforming Hindus versus Women – What it means for us?
http://www.goleancaribbean.com/blog/?p=15580 The Cause of Caribbean Disunity: Religion’s Role – False Friend
http://www.goleancaribbean.com/blog/?p=14633 Despite Embedded ‘Bad Nature’, Women Have Nurtured Change
http://www.goleancaribbean.com/blog/?p=14378 Legislating Morality – Yes, We Can
http://www.goleancaribbean.com/blog/?p=13063 Gender Equity without a ‘Battle of the Sexes’
http://www.goleancaribbean.com/blog/?p=13882 Managing ‘Change’ in California – Calm and Smooth Evolutions
http://www.goleancaribbean.com/blog/?p=5695 Repenting, Forgiving and Reconciling the Past
http://www.goleancaribbean.com/blog/?p=3090 Learning from Modern Europe – Evolution without Revolution

Most of the Caribbean profess the religious affiliation with Christianity. The Founder of the Church, Jesus Christ, taught his followers an important lesson about manifestation versus faith. See here relating the story of Doubting Thomas:

doubting Thomas is a skeptic who refuses to believe without direct personal experience—a reference to the Apostle Thomas, who refused to believe that the resurrected Jesus had appeared to the ten other apostles, until he could see and feel the wounds received by Jesus on the torture stake.

The Holy Scriptures relates, from the Gospel account of John 20: 24 – 29 NWT:

24  But Thomas,+ one of the Twelve, who was called the Twin, was not with them when Jesus came. 25  So the other disciples were telling him: “We have seen the Lord!” But he said to them: “Unless I see in his hands the print* of the nails and stick my finger into the print of the nails and stick my hand into his side,+ I will never believe it.”
26  Well, eight days later his disciples were again indoors, and [this time] Thomas was with them. Jesus came, although the doors were locked, and he stood in their midst and said: “May you have peace.”+ 27  Next he said to Thomas: “Put your finger here, and see my hands, and take your hand and stick it into my side, and stop doubting* but believe.” 28  In answer Thomas said to him: “My Lord and my God!” 29  Jesus said to him: “Because you have seen me, have you believed? Happy are those who have not seen and yet believe.”

Happy are those who have not seen and yet believe. While it is only at the precipice that people change, how much better it would be for Caribbean society to change (reform and transform) without being at the precipice, without enduring the pangs of war. It is the assertion here that despite the heavy-lifting, “we” can succeed in optimizing Caribbean society … without war.

Is this possible? Can we reboot our society? Can we ‘weed out’ the bad ethos – i.e. rent-seeking and domestic violence – in our communities and adopt new more positive ethos? Can we implement the strategies and tactics we need to optimize our society, without first going to the brink of self-destruction?

Yes, we can!

This is the urging of the book Go Lean…Caribbean and the resultant roadmap. We hereby urge all Caribbean stakeholders to lean-in to this roadmap. Let’s get busy and go to work. This roadmap is conceivable, believe and achievable. We can make our homeland a better place to live, work and play. 🙂

About the Book
The book Go Lean…Caribbean serves as a roadmap for the introduction and implementation of the technocratic Caribbean Union Trade Federation (CU), for the elevation of Caribbean society – for all member-states. This CU/Go Lean roadmap has these 3 prime directives:

  • Optimization of the economic engines in order to grow the regional economy to $800 Billion and create 2.2 million new jobs.
  • Establishment of a security apparatus to ensure public safety and protect the resultant economic engines.
  • Improve Caribbean governance to support these engines, including a separation-of-powers between the member-states and CU federal agencies.

The Go Lean book provides 370-pages of turn-by-turn instructions on “how” to adopt new community ethos, plus the strategies, tactics, implementations and advocacies to execute so as to reboot, reform and transform the societal engines of Caribbean society.

Download the free e-Book of Go Lean … Caribbean – now!

Who We Are
The movement behind the Go Lean book – a non-partisan, apolitical, religiously-neutral Community Development Foundation chartered for the purpose of empowering and re-booting economic engines – stresses that reforming and transforming the Caribbean societal engines must be a regional pursuit. This was an early motivation for the roadmap, as pronounced in the opening Declaration of Interdependence (Pages 12 – 13):

xi. Whereas all men are entitled to the benefits of good governance in a free society, “new guards” must be enacted to dissuade the emergence of incompetence, corruption, nepotism and cronyism at the peril of the people’s best interest. The Federation must guarantee the executions of a social contract between government and the governed.

xvi. Whereas security of our homeland is inextricably linked to prosperity of the homeland, the economic and security interest of the region needs to be aligned under the same governance. Since economic crimes … can imperil the functioning of the wheels of commerce for all the citizenry, the accedence of this Federation must equip the security apparatus with the tools and techniques for predictive and proactive interdictions.

xxiv. Whereas a free market economy can be induced and spurred for continuous progress, the Federation must install the controls to better manage aspects of the economy: jobs, inflation, savings rate, investments and other economic principles. Thereby attracting direct foreign investment because of the stability and vibrancy of our economy.

Sign the petition to lean-in for this roadmap for the Caribbean Union Trade Federation.


Appendix VIDEO – Edwin Starr – War (What is it good for) – https://youtu.be/ztZI2aLQ9Sw

Matze 1987
Published on Aug 4, 2011 – Edwin Star – War

What is it good for?
Absolutely nothing
Uh ha haa ha
What is it good for?
Absolutley nothing…say it again y’all
War..huh…look out…
What is it good for?
Absolutely nothing…listen to me ohhhhh

WAR! I despise, ‘cos it means destruction of innocent lives,
War means tears to thousands of mother’s eyes,
When their sons gone to fight and lose their lives.

I said WAR!…huh…good God y’all,
What is it good for?
Absolutely nothing…say it again
War! Huh…What is it good for
Absolutely nothing…listen to me

WAR! It ain’t nothing but a heartbreaker,
War. Friend only to the undertaker. Ohhh!
War is an enemy to all mankind,
The thought of war blows my mind.
War has caused unrest within the younger generation
Induction then destruction…who wants to die? Ohhh

WAR! good God y’all huh
What is it good for?
Absolutely nothing…say it say it SAY IT!
WAR!…uh huh yeah huh
What is it good for?
Absolutely nothing…listen to me

WAR! It ain’t nothing but a heartbreaker,
War! It’s got one friend that’s the undertaker.
Ohhhh! War has shattered many a young man’s dream,
Made him disabled, bitter and mean,
Life is much too short and precious to spend fighting wars these days.
War can’t give life, it can only take it away!

Ohhh WAR! huh…good God y’all What is it good for?
Absolutely nothing…say it again War!…huh…woh oh oh Lord
What is it good for? Absolutely nothing…listen to me

War! It ain’t nothing but a heartbreaker,
War. Friend only to the undertaker…woo
Peace lovin’ understand then tell me,
Is there no place for them today?
They say we must fight to keep our freedom,
But Lord knows there’s got to be a better way.

Ohhhhhhh WAR! huh…good God y’all…
What is it good for?…you tell me!
Say it say it say it saaaay it!
War! good God now…huh
What is it good for?
Stand up and shout it…NOTHING

Music in this video – Listen ad-free with YouTube Premium

  • Song: War
  • Artist: Edwin Starr
  • Album: Can You Dig It? The 70’s Soul Experience
  • Licensed to YouTube by: UMG (on behalf of Rhino); UMPI, AMRA, CMRRA, Sony ATV Publishing, UNIAO BRASILEIRA DE EDITORAS DE MUSICA – UBEM, SOLAR Music Rights Management, LatinAutor – SonyATV, LatinAutor, EMI Music Publishing, UMPG Publishing, Kobalt Music Publishing, and 13 Music Rights Societies
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