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Sunday, November 11, 2007

Kenyans Are Too British And Conservative And It is Dangerous



I will tell a very personal story to get an important point across.

I believe that I was born to write and publish and not too long ago I was extremely frustrated and at the end of myself because my prosperous publishing business collapsed and nothing that I tried worked. This was mainly due to the damaging blow against the gutter press in Kenya (which the Nairobi Star is still struggling with today) that the mainstream press had successfully engineered. Every publication I tried to come up with (no matter how ingenious the concept was) completely failed to take off. There was of course also the hard economic times Kenyans were facing, but that was a secondary reason for my persistent failure. You will not believe how many times I tried. Finally in deep frustration I left Kenya for a foreign land and in my mind promised myself that I would never again go into publishing, at least not for the Kenyan market.

Employed full time working for somebody else, the opportunity to publish on the World Wide Web suddenly presented itself. But everybody I talked to told me I was dreaming. Not enough people had access to the Internet (that was early 2005). And how did I hope to make money from the exercise? I did not know enough about the web to succeed, I was bluntly told repeatedly. Actually I soon had a million and one reasons why it would never work.

At about the same time an interesting new conventional publishing opportunity in East Africa quite suddenly presented itself...

Read more

The 5 most popular articles on Kumekucha today 11th Nov

6 comments:

luke said...

Thank you Chris for bravely acknowledging with your mouth (read hand) in public a serious point which up until now only the blogger formerly known as Derek (now Deroo) was brave enough to openly mention here in this forum, and that is that as a people Kenyans are very conservative-or as Bwana Derek put it at that time-timid. They don’t rock the boat-they don’t even get into the boat-in fact, what boat are you talking about?
As a nation our malfunctioning way of life badly needs a breath of fresh air and a new lease of life (not money), we have spent 43+ years preserving the dead corpses of the past and attempting to perform mighty miracles on the same scale as Archbishop Deya (see Taabu’s article on False prophets and fake miracles) in hope of reliving the good old glory days of Nyayo Pioneer One and 1988 All African Games
I can hear someone arguing and saying if something’s not broken why fix it-excuse me please, can’t you see how broken tribalism and corruption (and I’ve only named 2 iron-like grip vices) have made us?
In a desperate situation like ours, change is inevitable, but even in a “good” situation change would be required also-it’s the type of change that counts and that is the type of outcome that we as a nation seek to determine-for example I don’t care how much they deny it, tribalists will remain tribalists, whether in power or the opposition unless a fresh start is made
Someone once said “we must run to stand still”-yes that is true but movement must not be in circles but forward in motion, and this is what Kenyans must not fear

Proud Kikuyu Woman said...

'Chris', what is your point here and to whom is it directed? Is it: Take Risks and Do the Unconventional (would appeal to the general reader, especially anyone keen on making some money)?
Accept Majimboism (to the voters, to reject the current centralized government and vote ODM)? Or
Accept Devolution of the presidential Powers-aka ugatuzi wa mamlaka-(PNU, and alas, the party of many parties already purportedly supports that)? Up till now, is it still unclear that devolution of powere and majimboism are two seperate enities, and can indeed exist separately. I wonder what it will take to get this across to you if Philemon Othieno Wesonga/Phillip Doila, or Phil could not do it.

Secondly, when you go on and on how neutral and unbiased you are when everyone who can read can tell otherwise, have you realized that with the same fingers you type that this is a money-making blog. Money making blogs are not cut out to be non-partisan. Don't know since when there was something for nothing in Kenya. As you and your team mates have said time and again, Kenyans are not fools. I think you are the coward biggest coward on your turf, big guy.

Taabu said...

That the only constant in our lives is change can only be deceptively denied. Even the American only cling to 'if its working don't fix it' with a qualification: keep trying.

Fear of the unknown is the firm foundation of being stuck in a time warp. Our dinosaurs are risk a verse and they have ropped us in as foot soldiers. Measured optimism is key to sucess. The light bulb was discovered on the 100th trial. And you know what? The inventor looked at the previous failures as less useful successes.

Thank God bloggers here just like our scoundrels for politicians can afford the luxury of engaging in a game of semantics. Call it devolution, Ugatuzi (ama MATUZI?) or PNU's derivatives, but concentrating power in dinosaurs' hands is akin to getting chained to our past.

Nostalgia has no room in innovation and prosperity. Even the British pride and conservativeness is on the whole very progressive (no love lost in their hype).

David Cameron can be the charming tory leader but better the glum GB with Labour (read democrats). At least they have proved and working institutions working independent of the political mandarins.

Kenyans cannot afford to hide under British's sense of conservativeness of the 1950s/60s. Ours is Makerere of yore when others were (truly) fools. Not anymore. Change is a must and you only fail to change to have yourself swept by the same.

Taabu said...

PS: My dear sister WITH DUE RESPECT please turn to something else instead of the stuck record: Philemon Othieno Wesonga/Phillip Doila/Phil. I implore you not to read malice in this but if it was a point you aimed to make then it must have been made, move on.

I fear your monotonous reference above smacks of sneering and almost neighbouring going personal. Phil has his horse as you have yours but he has feelings and belive you me you hurt them. Stop please, please. In the spirit of e-cop. No offense intended overtly or covertly. Over to you.

Anonymous said...

The comments herein shows how divers Kenya has become. I pray forthe day PKW would embrace Chris and say CONGRATULATION and vice versa. i believe Kenya is in a trying moment where all of us need to be patient about one another. Your Comments leave alot to be desired. You are greate geniuses and many more are out there. This potential need to be tapped and Kenay move to be a First Class Society. Love you all n LONG LIVE KENYA.

Anonymous said...

Chris, let me remind you the great words of one man you know very well. He said this several times (On parade)"For every great objective, there must be a great sacrifice". The man was none other than Checkman! (Mr. Maneno). Weren't you in "Changez!"?. Am glad things worked out for you and good luck in your endeavours.

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