Q: If you look five years down the line, do you see yourself relinquishing some power to the parliament?
“Probably sooner. We havenâ€™t shut any doors on relinquishing power. My mission is as quickly as possible to get Jordan to have a prime minister elected from a political party…We need to create new political parties based on programs…The Arab Spring didnâ€™t start because of politics; it started because of economics â€” poverty and unemployment…What keeps me up at night is not political reform because I am clear on where we are going. What keeps me up at night is the economic situation because if people are going to get back on the streets, it is because of economic challenges, not political.” – HM King Abdullah [Washington Post]
It constantly feels that the conversation regarding the relationship between good governance and good economics is still largely missing in our national political discourse. They are deemed to be two separate things, when in reality, they are intertwined. After a decade’s worth of rapid economic shifts that have played to the benefit of the few and a burden to the majority, people have made the connection between the role politics plays in engineering a sustainable economy. King Abdullah may be right about the economic challenges being pertinent, but if one looks closely at the demands, politics is at the bleeding center of the wound. Unemployment is tied to job creation policy, is tied to investments, is tied to corruption. Low wages are tied to social inequity, the rise of elitism, the disappearance of the middle class and the public policy that made all of this possible, specifically in the past few years.
When people ask for an elected government, the primary driver is a request for a governing entity that not only offers alternative economic solutions, but allows those people to hold them accountable should they fail to deliver.