Busuttil ends speculation about whether he will stay on

Published: June 13, 2017 at 9:41pm

Speaking in Gozo this evening, Nationalist Party leader Simon Busuttil said clearly that he will not stay on, despite protests to the contrary.

He said that he will assume responsibility for the electoral defeat, and that means he has got to step down. It is clear that he means it, and that all those who are agitating for him to retain the party leadership are doing so to no purpose.

The real problem I see there is that there appears to be nobody fit to replace him – nobody who has been a paid-up party member for a minimum of two years, anyway.

The names I have seen bandied about so far leave me cold – too much baggage and no personality. It seems clear to me that the most pressing requirement, apart from the obvious clean cupboard with no skeletons in it, is an extremely strong, steely and dominant personality with a touch of menace.

The thing about Muscat is that he sniffs fear and uncertainty like an animal, and is thrown off course only by individuals he suspects are even more ruthless than he is.

The only kind of person who is going to prove to be psychologically problematic for him is somebody physically much bigger (not difficult, but difficult in Malta), better-looking (ditto), sharper-tongued, steelier and meaner than he is – but with a smile on his face that conceals the dagger from the public, so that everyone can say how positive he is as he crushes that bunch of looters. I don’t see any of this happening and it bothers me no end.

You can’t beat corrupt politicians and other forms of criminals with peace and love. Even Mahatma Gandhi achieved his ends through carefully planned methods and cold determination. I’ve never been one who believes that “is-sewwa jirbaħ żgur”, because general observation and facts have taught me the contrary.

In any battle between good people and bad who are of equal intelligence, the bad are invariably more likely to win because they have no moral brakes and boundaries and will use methods and measures at which the good baulk.

Good people can only win against bad people if they are smarter and tougher. If the bad people, besides being bad, are also smarter and tougher than the good, then the good stand no chance.

Quite frankly, what the Nationalist Party needs as it finds itself up against what is quite clearly a criminal outfit masquerading as a political party is a good shark. Think of the high-profile individuals who waged war on the Mafia in Italy in the 1980s and early 1990s and you get the picture. At least nobody’s going to get blown up here in Malta unless they’re criminals themselves.