There is something about Christmas that that lifts even some of the most fractured of spirits. The sheer anticipation, the viral sentimentality, the joy of giving all seem to completely shadow and render irrelevant, our complaints, our pain our stark reality, as we ditch our bah-humbugging for just a little while.
But for as much as we give, deep down we expect to receive, from family, from friends and, as children, a big benefactor who delivers just what they wish for.
However, our country’s benefactor-in-chief has not been in a giving mood this year, and has been rather niggardly and parsimonious instead.
Therefore, there will be no presents under the Christmas tree, and no ease from the National Social Responsibility Levy. For many, it seems that the Grinch has struck again.
Still, we anticipate Prime Minister Freundel Stuart’s Christmas message. We might even fantasize about what he might tell us.
We imagine Mr Stuart delivering his message somewhat differently this year. Instead of sending a printed script to the media, he summons the Democratic Labour Party (DLP) faithful before whom he is most comfortable, and delivers a flowing series of monologues loaded with words that run into entire paragraphs, seeking to invoke the spirit of patriotism.
There is some vituperative language about the Opposition, the trade unions, David Comissiong, and anyone he deems to be challenging his authority and competence. But for the most part, it is Mr Stuart at his brilliant best as he addresses die-hard supporters.
“Thank you for that most magical welcome. There is nothing like the spirit of love that Christmas brings. Thank you for giving me so much. Christmas is about giving and this year I have given you much. I have given you the National Social Responsibility Levy, which I assure you is not as painful as everyone is trying to make it appear.
“And if you believe it hurts, don’t blame it. It is your fault for buying from abroad all of those expensive things that you do not really need.
“True, I have presided over many a downgrade, but not of Barbados, for no one can downgrade us. Then again, it is not my fault that the economy is moribund.
“Frankly, I do not understand why so many people dislike me and the DLP for all we have achieved. Maybe they don’t understand.
“My wish this Christmas is that you stop complaining and you don’t blame me for anything that goes wrong. No income tax returns? Don’t blame me. Potholes? Not my fault. Rising prices? I am not to blame. Sewage problems? Not I.
“I also wish you would appreciate the construction ambiguity of my position on a pay rise for public servants, a new sewage plant and the new hospital that you were promised.
“My dear supporters, let’s make no mistake. There are cats and mice enjoying fellowship, and lions and lambs lying together, all in the pursuit of their perverse objectives of getting rid of this Government.
“We must not allow that to happen. We must not have the lions and the lambs, or the cats and the mice running and ruining our beautiful Barbados. We will allow no weapons of mass distraction by the Opposition.
“So there will be no snap election. I will then hang on for as long as the Constitution allows.
“So let me shepherd you through a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year.”