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A modernised Malta

The false notion that, as a nation, we fall under some sort of a level of lesser ability than that of foreign neighbours is an absurdity which is only keeping us away from achieving our desired goals. We Maltese have the same exact capabilities as our European neighbours. Moreover, when it boils down to language skill, I believe that we do have an edge over them. Sometimes we just need to be prudent with our inflated self-importance and definitely erase our "size issues" from our heads.

On the same note, like our cousins on the European continent, we deserve to have the same standard of living they enjoy in their respective country. Joining the European Union was not supposed to be just a political exercise for the party in power but a reality that was expected to reap benefits for each and every citizen on this island. Regrettably, today's reality fails to give that much anticipated result.

For the time being, it seems as if the EU is an institution which favours the haves and not the have-nots. Why am I saying such a thing? The reason for my statement is that most of those benefitting directly from it, especially in Malta, are the ones in power, those very close to them or the grand corporations with some connections.

How is the average person in the street exactly benefitting? They tell us that everyone is reaping dividends from the millions of euros we are receiving as funds from the EU, or are we? How come then that so many people are so discontent about the way the EU funds are being run? Why is it then that so many of us are struggling to make ends meet while a few others are living like royalties? Was this the true meaning behind the famous slogan Together Everything Is Possible?

It also appears that Malta's role in the EU is the same as of that football (soccer) player who actually forms part of his team but is always watching the game from the substitute bench. Unless that same player tries to show his abilities and works hard to improve his position in the team he will sit on that substitute bench for a long time.

Malta is in desperate need of fresh ideas and a modern way of doing politics. The latter simply confirms why a party cannot proclaim to be new and have fresh ideas when it has dominated the political scene for the last quarter of a century. That party can be given any other term but certainly not "fresh" and most certainly not "new". Can an old man ever possess the same freshness and modern ideas of that of a young man? No, he can't. That simply goes against the laws of nature.

The majority of Maltese citizens deserve a much better life than the present one. And this can only be achieved if in government there is a party that truly understands and feels the needs and wants of its citizens. History shows us that the Maltese have always fought their way out of any intricate situation even though they lost a lot in the process. However, those fights were meant to pave the way out of political misery and an independence from desire. Many families are today re-experiencing that needy feeling, which most of our families experienced in the past. This is leaving them to struggle inside a labyrinth of a sore reality. In life you are truly free when you feel you are able to live without being dependant on others. And today that is truly not our case.

I will not go into the merits of what was achieved throughout the years because that is enshrined in the volumes of Maltese political history but I will say it the way I see it: Our past achievements are rapidly disintegrating and are being replaced by a fake ideology, which is speeding fiercely on a road to nowhere.

I do believe that our islands can play a much bigger role in world politics. Our drawbacks are well known. Most of us look at our size more as a disability than as an advantage. In my humble opinion, Malta, represented by the government of the day, is not pressing enough ahead to take the place where it deserves to be. It is not using its resources well and, perhaps, it is making the fatal mistake thinking these are not enough to succeed. I say, yes, we can be among the prime movers on the European continent but before achieving that we need to have a government that justly believes in the country and the abilities of its citizens.

Talk is cheap and rhetoric is one of our island's few remaining practices which are still not taxed. So it is very easy for politicians to prose their way to success. But every successful politician must remember who got him up there in the first place, and apart from having the obligation and the moral responsibility to deliver his promises, he must believe in his sustainers in the same way he did before they voted for him.

We must be proud of our past achievements and our traditions but we cannot let them shackle our way forward. One has to live and think in terms of the reality of the present with the knowledge and experience gained from the past in order to overcome the challenges of the future.

The past, like the present, has its dark and nice chapters and Malta can truly change and move forward when the people can accept the changes occurring in the reality of the present. Pontificating over and over again that we are a modern European state is one thing but living and thinking as a modern European state is a whole different ball game. Let us be true Europeans.

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