Borrow Millions Again For What Dr. Gomez?

OURMONEYWhy is Minister of Health Dr. Perry Gomez claiming the government plans to seek approval for us to borrow $35 million from CIBC to complete the critical care block of the Princess Margaret Hospital in Nassau, when according to multiple published media reports, approximately $50 million in bond-issue funds raised by the Public Hospitals Authority for that very purpose, was up to the start of this year, reportedly still sitting untouched in an account at one of our local banks? Continue reading

One Example Of How The Gov’t Believes You Are Dumb As Dirt

numbersThe numbers racket in this country is based on the outcomes of state lotteries in the United States. This means that for all practical purposes, the lottery is already being played throughout The Bahamas every day, it’s just not a national lottery but is instead a lottery-based operation controlled by a few men. Yet the Tourism Minister claims a consultant said a national lottery would not work in The Bahamas. A nation of Bahamians is already putting millions on lottery numbers every single day of the week in this country making a few men rich, but a national lottery in The Bahamas can’t happen? This is an example of what a government tells you when they genuinely and truly believe you are dumb as dirt. Continue reading

Our Reverence Of All Things Foreign On VAT

VATINFOMy people never cease to amaze me. There is not one single salient thing said on VAT by the two visiting consultants from New Zealand that has not firstly already been said to our government by the IMF, or that has not already repeatedly been said to the government by Bahamians, yet the government and the Bahamian media are behaving as though salient points stated by these gentlemen, with all due respect to them, are brand new or independently consequential. As just one example: there is no VAT Bill and no VAT infrastructure in place. Did Bahamians really need their tax dollars to be used to pay foreign consultants to tell us what we already know and have said, which is that trying to implement this radically new tax in weeks with nothing in place would be “challenging”? And the off-beat goes on. Continue reading

Why Many Bahamians Don’t “Pledge To Excel”

realtalkTHE REASON many Bahamians don’t strive to excel is that our culture systemically praises and rewards mediocrity and ignorance. Excellence, enlightenment, ingenuity and intellectualism are not esteemed in our culture, mostly because our self-image is so warped that we see those things as too lofty for us to aspire to and possess. As such, we crush our brightest hopes while celebrating the mindsets and practices that keep us stuck – and we wonder why things aren’t getting any better. Continue reading

Simple Questions About Our Culture: Junkanoo & Carnival

questionWhy has the level of planning and multiplied millions in tax payer dollars the government wants to spend on a Bahamian knock-off version of Carnival, never been done for our crown jewel of culture, Junkanoo? Why is the promotion and sale of Carnival costumes suddenly such a sought-after idea, when our brilliant Junkanoo costumes have had to find their final resting places on scrap heaps, with no means of our hardworking artisans ever receiving financial benefits and lasting acclaim for their breathtaking and unmatched works of art produced every year? Why do Junkanoo groups have to struggle every year to acquire much-needed sponsorship to keep the culture alive, but a knock-off version of Carnival would happily get at least $9 million in tax payer dollars up-front invested into it? And why are we so content with the level of self-hate we as Bahamians have, that continuously manifests itself in how quick and excited we are to place a premium on what comes from outside The Bahamas over what comes from the work of our own hands, hearts and minds? Continue reading

Gov’t Tax Hikes Have Put Bahamians Into Unemployment, Raised The Cost Of Living & Done Nothing To Improve Our Debt Situation

tax_burdenWhen is the last time in this country’s history you’ve seen so many commercial and offshore banks downsize all within a single fiscal year? The higher operational costs banks have cited as one of their key reasons for downsizing came about because of the surprise business tax increases the government threw onto the country in July of last year. Businesses had no prior warning for the fiscal year and hence, were forced to make the fully anticipated decision of cutting costs – those costs ultimately being manpower. Major companies including banks saw their operational costs jump by multiplied millions literally overnight last year. Businesses are not going to swallow such a significant and surprise increase in operational costs – they are going to mitigate that increase by raising prices and/or cutting back on their other major operational cost – employees. Continue reading

The Referendum That Won’t – Again

ballotboxAs I stated at the start of the new year, a referendum on gender equality as it pertains to citizenship was not going to be held when the Prime Minister said it would primarily because this government is not truly governing the country, therefore nothing is running the way it ought to. Different groups are expressing their disappointment in yet another delay. For my part I am okay with the delay, and here’s why: no work by way of national dialog has been done thus far to push against a plausible repeat of the decision against gender equality made by referendum voters back in 2002. The government has done nothing to concretely demonstrate that gender equality in this respect is a true goal of theirs that they truly want to have the country vote yes to. Unlike the national campaign for the numbers houses, this issue doesn’t appear to be their horse in the race, nor do they appear interested in having the race at all. Continue reading

Public Servants, Salary & The Government

OURMONEYIsn’t it outrageous that when public officers protest labour-related issues for several hours, the government immediately flies up and threatens to cut their pay for several hours of demonstrations off the job – yet hundreds of public officers and those contracted by the government are faithfully reporting to work every day for weeks and months at a time with no pay at all, and the government won’t say a word about that though it has been happening now for almost two years straight. Continue reading

What Is Going On With These Issues?

INVESTIGATE1 – Visa Scandal

A visa scandal happened once again under the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. Police were investigating the sale of Bahamian visas to foreign nationals in Haiti, as well as the granting of thousands of our visas to persons in Haiti over a several month period – an amount that greatly exceeds the norm. So far, the Minister responsible has been allowed to get away with refusing to tell the media and Bahamian people what happened and what has been done about this breach of national security, even though he has the all details via a forensic audit done by his Ministry. What is the status of this matter? Continue reading

A Shallow Way To View Our Deep National Challenges – Battle Of The Age Groups

sundialBeing older doesn’t automatically make a person obsolete and a hindrance, just as being younger doesn’t automatically make a person innovative and up for the task at hand. In order for us to advance we need the wisdom and experience-minted skill of older Bahamians of integrity, as well as the fresh eyes and initiative of committed, hardworking younger Bahamians. Bahamians who say all the older people need to step aside are being short-sighted and arrogant, just as are those Bahamians who block younger people from the opportunity to demonstrate their capabilities. Continue reading