Stabroek News columnways of looking and feelingshaun michael samarooSeptember 24, 2012
Mapping the future
designing the Guyana Dream
We face two possible kinds of future. We could either stumble along into the default future, or design andcreate the future we want.In our default future, tomorrow just happens. It happens as we stumble along into tomorrow, not planningand charting a deliberate path forward.The designed future that's possible, however, sees us map, chart and carve tomorrow out of the veil of time. We envision tomorrow, and know what it looks like. We see it ahead. We embrace a clear vision of what the future looks like. We then create it with a plan of action, and working that plan.We may stumble into our default future with no real idea of what tomorrow holds. Or, we could createand design our desired future.So it is possible to design the future, to create our tomorrow. First, we must believe that we posses thiskind of power. It is possible to plan and mould the future into what we want it to be.Once we wake up every day with that firm belief, that idea and sense of responsibility, knowing that I amresponsible to design and create what my tomorrow is going to be, then I am inspired, motivated andenergized to live today with zeal and passion.This nation lives today stumbling into a default future, with no Guyana 21
century vision for our people.We do not design a way to achieve a Guyana Dream. Maybe we do not even believe anymore that weharbour a Guyana Dream.The American Dream, made famous and tangible in F. Scott Fitzgerald's golden novel, The Great Gatsby,drives the United States in its global ambition. Many of our own people migrate to North America because they believe in the ideal of the American Dream.And America, from its founding days till now, charts its way forward with a clear vision, a firm idea, of what it wants its future to look like. America builds the kind of society it wants.Most developed societies first design a model of what they want their communities to look like, and thenempower the nation to work towards that visionary model.Our nation once harboured a great dream. We once believed that we serve the world as the breadbasket of the Caribbean. We once supplied the world with top grade bauxite, as a leading global bauxite producer.The world once knew us as the friendliest folks in the British Commonwealth, with a garden city. Weonce ranked among the highest in our literacy rate, at 98 percent.The Guyana Dream once lived, the flag flying high and promising.After political independence, this nation planned, designed and mapped a future that we envisioned.We built roadways spanning the length and breadth of the coastland; we spanned raging rivers with bridges; we built a university for our sons and daughters; we empowered villages across the land withelectricity and schools and a public education, and health, system; we graduated from colonial worker habitation to planned communities and fertile farms and buzzing villages, alive with hope and hard work.In village after village, farmers paddled boats loaded to the brim with cassava and plantain and fruits andvegetables, along clear canals, bringing fresh food from farms to our market centres.