Smoke and Mirrors
Submitted by Observing
Every once in a while we are treated to a masterful display of “watch muh while I pull a rabbit out of my hat.” Our political culture and climate is no different. A peep at the mistress payslip after her much heralded 5% increase with only 5 months back pay that she hasn’t gotten yet reminded me of that phrase “the Lord giveth and the Lord taketh away”. Let’s examine it for a second.
Public workers got 5% or an average of $140 – $400. BUT account for $45 increase in water, $56 average increase for a health levy and an average increase of $60-$70 in gas and one can see how that 5% disappears. Oh, and God help those with assessable income over 75,000. Apparently they are now taking home on average $90-$300 LESS this month AFTER the increase due to the increase in income tax. Someone said belly full but hungry? Watch muh.
Road Tax removal
Sweet we said. No more $450 or $900 road tax. BUT, 40c on every litre has revealed itself as an average monthly increase of $76 for a basic commuter. Think about the taxi operators, PSV operators, freighters, truckers, dumpers, transporters, retailers, bread and food vendors etc. etc and you can see that much more is being paid. Sure $450 at one time is alot, but I guess we can afford $800-$900 or more spread out over 12 months. Can’t we? Watch muh.
SSA off books
So, expenses for the SSA are no longer under transfers in the annual budget. Poof! Disappearing expenditure. BUT, they now collect from every household ($45) regardless of water usage (or not usage). Presto, every householder now pays for their own garbage collection regardless of frequency. $45 for 7 collections a week or $45 for 1 collection a week or $45 for non collections a week. Watch muh.
Foreign exchange stabilisation
The quarterly report was great. Foreign exchange stabilised. But hold a minute. We stopped repaying debts didn’t we? Well there ya go. To every householder that owes FastCash, Axcel, the Credit Union, Courts, Standards, Massy or God forbid the Government of Barbados, just follow the leader. Stop paying and renegotiate! Watch muh.
South Coast Sewage Fix
Priceless. Move the sewage from the road….pump it in the swamp….release it in the sea….close the beach……then blame the wells for not working. Watch muh
Of course the removal of NSRL resulted in reduced prices, didn’t it? BUT, any good business man MUST pass on his increased transportation cost (fuel levy), increased water costs (50% of standard bill), increase in corporation tax (up to 30%), the employer contribution to the health levy (1.5% of each employee’s salary) and the compensation for profit margins (i.e. keep muh profits the same or higher no matter what). Of course we all know who these corporate level increases are passed on to! yes! We!!! Watch muh.
Increased tourism income
Without detail Barbados is perhaps the 2nd most expensive destination in the Caribbean. But, we have increased costs on virtually every aspect of tourism endeavour. I guess if 5% fewer visitors come but pay 10% more to get and stay here we can claim tourism is doing better. I guess. Watch muh.
Public input for privatisation and divestment
It’s always good to ask what people think and then do what you planned to any how. It’s even better when you have a survey monkey and a few New Unified Puppets Working with ya. Watch muh.
Less than 4000
Words, semantics, numbers, statistics. Po-ta-to, pota-to, To-ma-to, Toma-to. No more than 4000 workers will go home. Too bad for the 3,999 that are shaking in their boots. I could be wrong but this sounds like deja-vu
Anyhow, I was told to watch muh, so I will keep watching….and genuinely hoping it all works out. After all, um is all uh we!