Submitted by Yardbroom
With the requisite hesitation I have headed this submission with a question mark; as it supposes there is merit in a positive or negative response. . . and so it should be. In addressing a perceived problem – supposed dissatisfaction with the DLP Government – we must look at how we got here, here, being this administration.
The BLP was in government for about 14 years, a very long time in terms of governance for a political party in Barbados. What caused the electorate’s rejection of them, what made a supposed disgruntled electorate and they must have been, for they overturned a BLP Government and replaced it with a DLP majority. Were there any “major” initiatives during those 14 years like strategic thinking to re-position the Barbados economy?
I can already feel the toxicity in the air as tempers, taught, tangled and even some taciturn become fully loaded to trade blows; tarry awhile my earnest friends. I have only asked a question, no doubt answers which are welcome, will be forthcoming.
Is the BLP offering the same as they did in the 2008 election? Unless we re-examine what we – the electorate – did wrong and the logic would be that we did, “if” the DLP is a disappointment. We must understand the same action under the same circumstances always gives the same result and the cycle which we abhor will lead to continued dissatisfaction. If you throw an egg in the air it will fall to the ground, the law of gravity dictates that, but it does not dictate we should “not” catch it before it smashes into the rocks below.
You can also punish the opposition so they will not take you for granted. They must not believe no change is required just wait 5 years. That political continuum does not lead to a fundamental change in behaviours, because there is no incentive to change. The operatives know they can wait, criticize the previous administration for its omissions and presto, they are in government, as sure as night follows day.
So let us drill down in determined detail to a few of the “major” issues. CLICO, Integrity Legislation, the Economy, and Unemployment. I will deal with Clico last. To date they have failed to implement Integrity Legislation that is an undeniable truth. The BLP as far as I am aware has as yet made no such promise, if they have it might only be a “whisper”. If the DLP is removed from government, you would have done so because of what they the – DLP – have not done and the BLP will not do, up to now. In essence the punishment you inflict will still leave us without Integrity Legislation.
Economies world wide are in difficulty , “hard times” have impacted on Governments with the malevolence of a Dickensian character. Our major tourist market the UK is having difficulties and unless we can diversify we will have hardships until the UK’s economy improves. We are in for a lean time it matters not BLP or DLP. A foretaste of possible things to come were pictures of young men lazing under the trees in Brittons Hill, idyllic, but the trust of the article was crime in the area in recent years.
Unemployment has been a problem for successive Governments in Barbados and it is difficult to crack. Years ago there were avenues to the UK, Canada and the USA, times have changed and these are choked off. I recall prior to the last general election rumour was that “BUSH WACKERS” were being given to boys on the block; after 14 years in Government, was that the solution to a major problem?
Successive governments have concentrated on the big idea with mega dollars, but no effort is concentrated on a variety of sustainable small ideas that would bring work to the young unemployed in Barbados…a serious failing. We can see the future through what has happened to St Lawrence Gap, if those in the know are to be believed it has become a tired place, populated in the darkness hours by some who think tourists have travelled thousands of miles to smoke a joint in Barbados, which they are willing to provide. There is a connection to Brittons Hill. Young people need to be employed it gives them hope for the future.
CLICO, before the last general election there was talk of Hardwood, The New Prison, Bridge Construction, Bolt, a cheque and numerous other rumoured truths and half truths such as Dollars Barbadian or American. CLICO it is true is more “concrete” and many have lost money, often those in their evening years, when they can least able to do so. I cannot with any credibility duck it and I do not intend to do so. It is a problem that has to and must be solved. It matters not where it started, the DLP Government must get to grips with it.
When you nail down the issues to some sort of analysis, without using buzz words for effect or to get a reaction the problems become more digestible and easier to understand.
Ultimately some will say they would rather the BLP than the DLP, that is what democracy is about, the freedom to choose as you wish. However, a valid question is what are you going to change and what do you “expect” this change to bring about in Government behaviours, that would make Barbados a better place for us today. Perhaps more importantly how will this change impact on the youth of Barbados, in say the next twenty five years and beyond. It is the youth under the trees in Brittons Hill and other such environs which will decide the type of society we have in Barbados in the future. The party that has the foresight to tackle that problem head-on will leave a legacy to be cherished by all Barbadians, because failure is not a tenable alternative. . . .please don’t tell me BUSH WACKERS will do it, they will not.