Arthur Returns to the Big Stage

Submitted by William Skinner
Former Prime Minister Owen Arthur

Former Prime Minister Owen Arthur

Those who would seek to write off former Prime Minister Owen Arthur are making a potentially grievous political mistake. Apparently, it is now customary in our society, to declare anyone above the age of 60 as a has been. This means that all those teachers, police, nurses and others including those in the private sector, are supposed to go home at 55 or 60 and grow lettuce or roses. I respectfully beg to differ. The truth is that, as far as I know, Arthur has no impediment that will affect his ability to be a very productive citizen for many years to come.

This author, 9/1/14

I do not sing in the choir of former Prime Minister, Owen Arthur and I remain convinced that the current Minister of Finance Chris Sinckler, is in the middle of the ocean, in a moses with a hole. However, I support Arthur, who is displaying an act of statesmanship, by accepting the chairmanship of the Economic Advisory Council. This is a genuine example of the politics of inclusion because Arthur has not been asked to surrender his independent status and he has not joined the ruling Democratic Labour Party.

Arthur is as guilty for the current adversarial component of our politics as any other politician because in his prime as Prime Minister with a popularity that was about to surpass Errol Barrow’s, he squandered the opportunity by becoming very abrasive toward journalists and other citizens, and eventually suffered two successive electoral defeats thereby guaranteeing a plunge in his popularity. However, he remains popular especially among those who believe that he was a good manager of the economy. In my opinion, he should have done more with the expenditure he had at his disposal but others maintain that his management of the economy was stellar. Apart from his contribution as chair of the Advisory Council, if he could at the very least keep both BLP and DLP diehards a bit quiet, he would have contributed to a decrease in the polarization that now blunts every effort of progressive and enlightened public discourse about the state of our country.

He reminds me of a batsman, who “gives away his hand” and then sits in the pavilion and tells all the other batsmen how they should bat. I believe that that for a considerable period, of his time in office, he was afflicted by managerial cataracts but since leaving Llaro Court, his vision seems to have improved. We now expect this improved or corrected vision to benefit the administration and hopefully redound to a clearer vision for Sinckler and the country. Therefore no nationalistic citizen should oppose what is essentially a meeting of minds. We can only hope that Sinckler is not so blind that nobody can make him see. The last man who attempted to correct Sinckler’s vision, the previous Governor of The Central Bank, Dr. Delisle Worrell , got fired !

There are many astute political commentators, who are seeing Arthur’s acceptance of the offer as a blow to the current leader of the Opposition, Mia Motley. It is Mottley’s fault that Arthur’s shadow still hangs over her political ambition to be Prime Minister. She allowed Arthur to undermine her on two occasions and took a considerable amount of political body blows. Quite frankly, I am very impressed that she did not leave her party as Dr. Clyde Mascoll did when he believed that some powers had conspired to remove him from leadership of the DLP and return it to the late David Thompson. I believe that Mottley has gone through the hottest fire and is now of the finest political steel. If Arthur is still a thorn in her political side, I would have to conclude that my belief that she is the finest steel would have been wrong or premature.

In terms of the DLP , it is at best a psychological victory but I don’t think that this development will automatically rescue it from what many believe is certain defeat at the polls, at the next general election. The obvious winner here is Owen Arthur, because even as his parliamentary career comes to an end and having lost his last two elections, his relevance to our country remains intact. It proves that if he had been more aware of the pinnacle on which he once stood and had not allowed the trappings of power to blind him to what he could have achieved, the Democratic Labour Party would have still been in Opposition.


  • @Gabriel

    With the caveat -until the forex runs out.


  • David

    Why should MAM open her mouth on OSA,we are in perilous times at the moment and her focus must be on trying to save the country from the destruction that OSA has predicted.

    I agree with Peters comment on no need to to say anything as OSA entry or not is a political distraction to the bigger picture.


  • @ Gabriel
    Vincent,you do not know anything about Arthur…
    Not surprising…. given that Vincent don’t know anything period…!!
    ….constantly repeating gossip …and then reversing hard when exposed…. 🙂

    @ Hal
    Who did you hear intelligently refer to Owen as a ‘brilliant economist’?
    All ‘Economists’ are farcical jokers flouting a mock discipline….

    Owen is a fellow who is endowed with COMMON Sense …and intestinal fortitude above the national norm.
    He has a good grasp of reality, and he has made contributions to national life …. unlike most others on here.

    NOBODY, anywhere …has cussed Owen over the years more than has Bushie – but it was NEVER because he was a jackass like Froon, Stinkliar or 99% of other Bajans – It was PURELY and TRULY because he actually had the POTENTIAL to be really great for Barbados… and slipped.
    Even now, his words and prognoses are much more lucid, pointed and rational than any other ‘expert’ bout the damn place.

    Arthur stood up impromptu at LES Conference centre sometime around 2004, and in a masterly speech, outlined exactly what was needed to put Barbados on a path to sustainability….. Then got distracted with CSME and a lotta other shiite instead….

    Bushie is NOT saying that he was great, a genius, brilliant ….or any such shiite. BIUT he was heads and shoulders above 99% of other Bajan brass bowls, and he certainly contributed infinitely more than Hal or Vincent.. and practically everyone else here…


  • In the prevailing environment Arthur will command a greater audience because of his trackrecord as a former prime minister and economist who managed the country at a time of ‘prosperity ‘.

    Mia does not have the political capital to absorb body blows from OSA for an indefinite period.


  • David

    You are wrong on that one as the punches are powder puff ones.


  • Bushie

    Chuckle……BT yuh BB son of a BBE

    All I seek is info,unfortunately Gabriel had to snatch the sprat I left for you and enuff presented some though he has balked at dividing it up in OSAs respective terms.

    From my review of the 3 terms of OSA the first one was his stellar moment all went down hill afterwards and I would like to know why and how can one expect anything different if he was ever to lead again.


  • After listening to OSA this morning, a man whom I followed and admired, I am convinced that his agenda is more than being a stool pigeon for the Stinkliar.

    He sees that the fall of the DLP is inevitable and his hatred of Mia is so great that he has to find a way to re-ignite the feud he has with her.

    I hope to God that Mia keeps ignoring him…………I think this is what is eating him out…………the day she opens her mouth, he will go in for the kill. Cynthia put him on notice today….he alone does not have ammunition.


  • Premier Kathleen Wynne to cut hydro rates by 25 per cent.


  • @Vincent


    The Cave Hill press conference given by Arthur still haunts MAM.



  • David

    Yes and that was meant as the knock out punch……she is still standing…..all the the present ones are powder puff material…..Prodigals point of Cynthia serving notice should be noted as she was around when Tom brought him in.


  • @ The Honourable Blogmaster

    All I want is NINE instances, ONE FOR EACH YEAR, where Mia Mugabe Mottley INITIATED, CAMPAIGNED & SUCCESSFULLY OVERCAME any public incident or infelicity against the people of Barbados.

    Anyone here, name nine, go to the various list of any campaigner here on this Blog, anyone and lift one of their topics and then cross-reference that with what Mia has done for the people of Barbados lately.

    “peradventure, there are not 9, then provide the ole man with 5, using an average of 1 issue championed for every two years…peradventure there be not 5 then 3…

    Note that the ole man has not gone to the 14 previous years but will accord such years of service “STASIS YEARS STATUS” read years when Mugabe did not do squat.

    My point is quite simple really.

    One is not interested in the many “bandwagons” that Mottley jumped on as she sought to leverage her position in the eyes of the public.

    Mine is the simple unassailable submission that with regard to here “leading” any cause for such rights, SHE & THE EXISTING CADRE of Mugabe-ites are ALL MISSING IN ACTION…

    And not one fellow can say me nay pun dat…

    Liked by 1 person

  • Did it occur to any of you that Owen Arthur may be intelligent enough to know the value of

    the contribution he is making to save Barbados from instability and a devalued dollar ?

    I personally do not give a puck what he did or didn’t do in the past.

    All I care about right now is that he has stepped up when asked and I hope he succeeds.


  • Piece Uh De Rock Yeah RIght – INRI March 2, 2017 at 4:35 PM #

    Chuckle……not willing to accept the blogmasters facts,you have now decided to erect a strawman for you to knock down.

    I am still waiting for your figure in order to base mine on…..afterall we all have to live ….right.


  • Hants,
    So you are now a mind reader? On a serious note, I have said in the past that Jeff Cumberbatch does an enormous public service by contributing to debate in this forum.
    At a time when academic so-called political scientists and economists should be leading public discussions they remain as silent as a mouse.
    Here we have a former prime minister becoming the chief economic adviser to a opposition party saying that the sacked governor of the central bank should have resigned rather than print money to pay public servants.
    Yet, the very minister who sacked the governor for insubordination is his boss; here we have a former prime minister that is on record as saying that the governor should have resigned rather than print money to pay publlc servants.
    Yet, here he is now as chief economic adviser to the same rogue minister. So, is the minister going to change his tune, or will Arthur defer to the minister, or will he resign before he has properly started?
    Where are out academics to guide the publlc conversation? The truth is that they lack intellectual confidence. They believe if they put their heads above the parapet they will have them snapped off.
    They are a bunch of intellectual frauds.


  • @ Hants

    Yes it is time for medication again and of a type that we seem to need and have needed for the last 50 years.

    Bajans have been imbibing large doses of NyQuil every five years around election time

    And where we are today is as a result of that intake.

    I’d like you to take a look at this political campaign ad for Kennedy back in time

    Imagine that this was what is attributed to making him win, imagine that!

    Lawson wants Mugabe to Win.

    So Does Vincent

    and so do many of you here


    And that is absolutely different to why i am providing this very rough medication for you and for me and for all of us.

    Because I do not want Barbados to Loose then it follows that I DO NOT WANT FUMBLES & HIS INCOMPETENTS TO WIN nor do I want MUGABE and her PARASITES TO WIN!!!

    So which part of that you think I need “medication” for??? heheheheheheheh

    If the IMF prescribes us medication my man, if Lagarde gets a chance to administer the medicine that our ailment requires you tink it going matter whu we heah doing pun Barbados Underground??

    You tink we going have the leisure time to come here and spend the whole day writing this ingrunce?

    We want men with integrity.

    We want competent leaders who can run the country

    We want men who will implement Integrity Legislation that will allow us to pock up people who try to subvert School Meals Syrup COntracts

    We want Freedom of Information s that a group of teives cand sith down with Sir Kidding and carve up $80 million a year of profits for 15 effing years and one Sandra Layne, a Jamaican at the Fear Trading Commission can say “ef you” to all uh we Bajans, you are not entitled to see the will of wunna forefathers.

    We want men who will immediately enact the power of recall for the benefit of all Bajans who have a representative dat dem does only see dress up in red wid Tem Shyt* pun dem shirt in 4 X shirts once a freaking year.

    Yes you right I do need medication for dat dont i? cuase as long as a fellow express dat he feel dat a piece uh de rock is his, he need medication in trufe.


  • @ Pieceuhderock,

    So I waste my time putting medicine in the Diaspora corner ?

    Well I gine tek it muh self and hope de heart don’t get palpitations. lol

    Liked by 1 person

  • Hants
    You have made a very valid point.Arthur instills confidence among businessmen and among investors both local and foreign.They all know that they are dealing with a shrewd tactician whose knowledge of Public Finance and Monetary and Fiscal Policies are right up their street.I was there when he lectured in Caribbean Tourism on the Hill and many might be surprised at his depth of knowledge and expertise in that area.Further he is in touch and in tune with the man in the street like Barrow and Tom were.MNy think the 300 million that was taken back out in 2013 was all to do with the lack of confidence in the result

    Liked by 1 person

  • Hal
    You are out of control.Compare apples with apples for god’s sake.You are fit to be tied.


  • How does one measure good tactician? Where did Arthur get his expertise in public finance? Has he got a CIPFA qualification or the necessary experience?
    Bring evidence of his expertise in economics and public finance, not waffle.


  • Gabriel

    Could you shed some light on the disconnect with the brilliance seen in OSA first term his lacklustre performance on the 2nd and 3rd terms.


  • Hal I am with you…..our standards are so low and globally out of touch that we call anyone that can use 3 syllable words an expert. Too funny. How can one be a “shrewd tactician” when they have not been tested to any global benchmark or standard? Only in Barbados. Usain Bolt is an expert…globally tested. Sir Garry is an expert…globally tested. Rihanna is an expert…globally tested.

    What the hell has Owen done to any global standard that he is a “shrewd tactician”? Look we bajans have to stop putting average joes and janes on this pedestal that has no global standing. That is why Barbados is not going anywhere. We cannot compete nor do we have the leaders who are internationally competitive in their areas.


    Mek me laught


  • @ Hants

    Tanks for the “medicine”, you notice that she has acquired “presence”

    Like Bruce and Michael J and a few others of the greats her chi is exuded through the screen

    @ Vincent

    I was looking for the question that you posed earlier but i cant find it yet, hen i do i will respond but in the meantime do enjoy…

    A well placed source in the Barbados Labour Party corridors has shared this information

    “The proposed appointment of former Prime Minister Owen Arthur as Economic Advisor euphemism for replacement Minister of Finance, has made Mugabe Mottley Leader of the Opposition (a position Mr Arthur once held) & the current Minister of Finance Decimals Bond Stinkliar very very vex


    As further reports come in the public will be updated


  • Piece

    Looking like you getting dotage or bi-polar….you wanted to know how much I was being payed, I told you zilch and asked you how much you were getting paid from OSA so I could ask for more as I am supporting the future PM… could also tell me about the other perks like state of the art computer,willing frauleins,travel,etc,etc…..we have to help each other out you know as we are in the same business…..right Bro..


  • Well Well & Consequences Observing Blogger
  • OSA’s appointment was REJECTED with only Chris Sinckler and Steve Blackett supporting it. Estwick, Inniss, Sealy, Lashley(s) and Stuart being the most vocal opponents. Even JepternInce is alleged to have gotten is a score few shots against OSA.


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