by James “JB” Bryson
OK, by now anyone can see that I have a strong distaste for politics in general. I would be a hypocrite if I, as an American Ex-Pat, only pointed my daggers towards the current Panamanian administration. My country of birth is RIFE with hypocrisy, and as it pertains to religion entering the world of politics, the US leads the planet in “do as I say, not as I do”.
That being said, I do currently call Panama my home and I find certain conflicting ideologies to be very annoying.
President Varela has claimed to follow the tenants and teachings of “Opus Dei”. Like many versions and interpretations of religion between Christianity and the Catholic faith, this secular division calls to a very distinct principle. “Opus Dei” which is a literal Latin translation of “Work of God”, calls its flock to be holy by living an “ordinary life” and literally assure that all of your actions are those that benefit the whole. It is actually referred to as “the Work”. Very similar to an Amish version of religion, where eccentricities are passed up in favor of what is best for others performing “the Work”.
Which is why I find Varela so polarizing. He was VP to a man that he consistently uses as an example of all the bad that occurs within politics, yet ask the people of Panama. Those that he should be doing “the Work” for and on behalf of, he falters to the former in great numbers.
Varela spends his time doing “Work” with Russia, China, and Cuba. Countries with some of the absolute worst documented human rights violations of record. Always smiling, always looking dapper. NEVER looking like he is living an “ordinary life”. I would go as far to say that nobody seems to be enjoying be “EXTRAordinary” that Varela himself. Where does the hammer meet the nail when it comes to his convictions as opposed to his actions? His convictions are openly stated. His actions are one of a unapologetic capitalist that will do business with literally ANYONE.
So here’s to keeping up all the good “Work”.