The three quotes chosen by Ian Strachan to preempt his play “Honorable Member” makes it undeniably clear that the play is a very critical and brutally honest address of what has become known in the Bahamas as “Politricks”. “Politricks’ is a spin off from the word politics, and was coined by Bahamian Playwright Michael Pintard featured in his play of the same name, lauding the corruption of politics and the magnitude of extortive power it affords. Though critical and honest, Strachan’s play is delightfully wrapped in allusions, metaphors and scores of literary elements that addresses the deceptive and exploitative nature of politics; it clearly demonstrates his use of David Brin’s quote that “power attracts the corruptible” through just the use of character Fergie rules of politics.
Politics which should be the art of governance for the good of all involved is depicted by Strachan as the art of governance for the good of a few. Fergie embodies this through his use of political rules which clearly show that politics is all about the tricks, the smoke, and mirrors.
Rule one states:
“The first rule of politics: look your best. People don’t want a leader who look beat up and run down. I 70 but who could tell? A little Just for Men magic and I forever 55. You have to seem youthful, fit, confident at all times. Especially when the chips are down. Face them with a smile and wear your best suit. Don’t sweat. Sweat shows weakness. You have to look like you’re living a better life than the average man. Otherwise, why should the average man waste his time votin for you? How can you help him if you look more hopeless than him?
The second rule of politics. Keep your circle small. I talkin bout da people who know the real you; who know what you really think. If you have any sense that’s a tight-tight circle. One like me, I have a second circle inside the first circle. The first circle for fellas I trust–mostly–and ma wife. The second circle: only one nigger in dere and das da only man alive who know what it is to walk in my shoes. Everybody else probably gat a knife behind deir back ready to jick me. But dat nigger is my best friend. My only friend. So happens he’s also my biggest rival. So we had our ups and downs. But a rival ain’t a enemy. There’s a difference. Dem set in my cabinet, now dey is my enemies.
Just by visiting two of Fergie’s rules, it becomes obvious that Strachan is exposing a system of corruption that hides behind governance and the power it affords. The welfare of the people and the country is of no concern if it does not serve the personal agenda of those in power.