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Pakistan’s Politics: A fight to the finish

You cannot run away from your weaknesses, you must sometimes fight it out or perish; and if that be so, why not now?- H.G. Wells

You cannot run away from your weaknesses, you must sometimes fight it out or perish; and if that be so, why not now?- H.G. Wells

After you have ruled the roost and have been at the helm multiple times, the hardest thing to swallow is your failure and the fact that your popularity is diminishing. It is always difficult to let go off something you have held onto for so long. Celebrities have been seen committing suicides or going into deep depression once they are past their heydays and when the limelight seems to evade them. This happens because people grow accustomed to their success. They take their star value for granted and thus become enslaved to their own fame. Elliot Smith, Robin Williams to name a few. The case of PMLN and PPP is no different. They have been massively successful, although the means could be questioned. They have been able to attract huge crowds. People have blindly followed them. In short, they have been pretty much like a pop singer at the apex of their career. Thus the tendency to take success for granted would have come naturally to both these parties. Just like a successful movie star or a singing prodigy their past success has blindfolded them. They are unable to detect that their fame and authority has nosedived. They are no more the darlings  of the populace. Their star value has dwindled at an incredible rate.

When a super star smells failure following their immense success the first phase is that of denial. People tend to reject the notion that they are falling out of favor of the same people who at one time could die to catch a single glimpse of their heroes. The denial phase has another ramification and that is to view every subsequent failure as an act of conspiracy by their adversaries. The predilection to consider every failure as a conspiracy and not their own incompetence turns out to be the biggest hurdle for them to have any chance of making a comeback. As they say, know your limitations and defy them. Our biggest political parties, both of them, have taken the same path as that of a famous movie star. They have enjoyed success, they started taking things for granted and did  not care for the people who had made them successful, and thus face a downward spiral now. As the famous quote goes, you can fool some of the people all the time, all of the people some of the time, but you cannot fool all the people all of the time.

Like we have seen in the case of a failing pop singer, we expect PMLN and PPP to make a lot of noise. Blame PTI for anything that goes wrong around them. Put absurd and frivolous allegations on PTI and try to demean them. These are all positive symptoms. In case of a movie star these indicate that the person realizes the fact that their fame is on the wane and thus they are coming out of the denial phase. The same stands true if there is a political party going through the same phase. The phase that ensues denial is violent and self-destructive. The person would grow aloof, they will be disheartened, they will become extremely violent, and their suicidal tendencies will  begin to manifest themselves. This is a kin to a movie star who, towards the end, locks himself inside a small room,refuses to eat,disconnects from the outer world, looks disheveled and becomes a hermit. Nothing can assuage the wounds if they are self-inflicted.

The only way to survive is to accept the reality, mend your ways, and start building your reputation from scratch. Nothing in this world is permanent except change and people or entities must accommodate and adapt. However, the road to remedy isn’t that easy for PPP and PMLN. The biggest challenge is to shun the deep-rooted notion of dynastic politics, abolish the incompetent team and eradicate corruption. For both the parties, under the current circumstances, and if the current state of affair prevails their political death is impending, the vultures are circling. Rebuilding is a strenuous task made more challenging by PTI’smeteoric rise and the sudden awakening of the people of Pakistan. Adapt or perish, now as ever, is nature’s inexorable imperative.

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