Outlook is Gloomy

Dr. Kim Quimby, a Lecturer in Immunology at UWI, Cave Hill appointed to the committee to advise the government of Barbados on the selection of vaccines issued the following chilling pronouncement recorded elsewhere in the press.

I don’t think anyone can say at this time when we will get back to normal. There are just a lot of variables going on.

There is also the mutation that you have to worry about and the decrease efficacy in the viral mutation. You don’t know how long it is going to continue.

If we don’t get everyone vaccinated quickly there is an increased risk of more mutation. So there are just too many unknowns to say when we can get back to normal. We just got to do what we can do at this point…

Dr. Kim Quimby

The statement is chilling because the government of Barbados and other countries with an overdependence on tourism and services have been adopting a wait and see strategy of borrowing to protect the way of life we have become accustomed. Some will define that way of life as living way above our ability to earn (afford).

We hope Dr. Quimby’s dispassionate warning based on training is factored in government policy and promoted in a national conversation. Setting expectations is important because if we observe the behaviour of Barbadians one senses there is an unforgivable ignorance about the dire economic predicament Barbados is currently mired. We should not have to be reminded that before COVID 19 reared its head just over a year ago Barbados’ economic state was fragile.

In a recent blog F for V I S I O N the blogmaster expressed concern at the lack of cohesion between ministries revealed in the recent 2021/2022 Estimates Debate. We have posted questions how does government plan to manage the 700 million budget deficit. What is the plan to sensitize the population of the real situation. The blogmaster understands the objective of government messaging to inflate the confidence of average Barbadians at a difficult time. However, the message must be tempered with reality.

If Dr. Quimby’s warning comes true, is the current plan to protect and give hope to Barbadians a realistic one?

Some will say send home government workers. If we do, how will it impact government revenues. The economists will generously use the Multiplier Effect argument. What about the social dislocation and disruption? There will be the knock on effect to the private sector given the design of the local economy which is public sector led.

Without getting technical and using a low dose of commonsense there are inherent risks and others we have to carefully manage in the unravelling COVID 19 public health crisis which has exposed economic and social vulnerabilities in Barbados and other countries. In the same way the virus is described as novel, responses by Small Island Developing States (SIDs) will have to vary from traditional tactics and approaches to problem solving.

The biggest two problems Barbados have to stare down are managing an unforgivable debt accumulated over decades to support a popular lifestyle AND the ability to materially move the GDP needle which is challenged by the fact our main money earner is a non starter for some time to come.

The reality is that the novel problem being faced by Barbados has stumped our best and brightest. If there is a path to finding our way out of the COVID 19 induced economic maze the blogmaster remains ignorant. Uneasy lies the head that wears the crown they say. Is is easy for some to continue to harp about the missteps that created a one-legged economy. It is more difficult to offer ideas that will move the GDP needle in a significant way.

The BU space over the years has captured hundreds of ideas posted by the dull and intelligent. The blogmaster senses the political directorate and shadows in the private sector have been contented to milk unfit for purpose economic and governance models.

Ladies and gentlemen, we are now reaping the whirlwind from those stasis positions taken.

The outlook remains gloomy.

110 comments

  • N0
    U can go back to any thing ac said 5 years ago
    Couldn’t care less factors today dictates differently
    There are people who are now hurting
    Govt steps up to the plate and throw them a dry bone
    People of your ilk expects them to be happy
    A suggestion of a stimulus pkg got wanna fly off the fence
    I guess wanna belly full but low end wagers must eat the crumbs falling off the table
    The govt is not shy on paying top dollar to consultants so why can’t govt put some money in the people hand which can bring positive immediate affect to the people and the economy
    People are hurting

    Like

  • @ angela cox,
    Wherever you find a black government you will always witness a total disrespect towards their own black people.

    Namibia is the latest country to come under the spotlight of Aljazeera’s investigation unit. It makes for tragic viewing..

    https://www.aljazeera.com/news/2021/4/2/namibian-president-caught-in-new-fishing-corruption-allegations

    Like

  • TLSN
    In some instances yuh can blame the people
    Just look at how the people in small islands vote the same Govt for many years
    Which all but give these govts absolute power
    Even here in Barbados the rumblings have started pointing fingers at Mia for her running over the constitutions
    Yuh think such would give much importance but he’ll No
    Many here on BU are interested in the USA while there rights being are taken away right under there nose
    Go figure

    Like

  • @ Angela Cox,
    It has always been easier for the folks on BU to focus on events from the USA. Donald Trump entertained them for five years. Plus we have had an endless diet of blacks been slaughtered. Who needs to go to cinema?

    This is why so many of them appear to be indifferent towards the plight of their own country men and women.

    A constructive criticism of the country is viewed by some as blasphemy. Meanwhile our politicians, lawyers and business communities continue to cash in; knowing full well that the fools on the rock are fully tuned in to events from the USA.

    Like

  • Nonsense.

    The BU community is made up of Bajans living outside of Barbados like you and the parties criticizing.

    Like

  • Indeed, the overseas crew are never silent and refuse to be silenced.
    It would have been difficult to ignore events in the US during the past four years, but some here have kept Barbados under their microscope throughout this period.

    In this diverse group, each does his/her own thing. Using myself as an example, I am all over the place, even on serious issues but that should not be considered as indifference.

    Like

  • @ David BU

    Let’s be honest. There are certain ‘BU regulars’ who seem to believe they should control the forum’s narrative…….. ‘dictate the pace’………….. so that all BU topics for ‘discussion,’ should focus solely on WHAT they want to discuss or criticizing Mia Mottley and the BLP.

    A ‘BU regular,’ for example, accuses you of ‘distracting,’ each time non-political articles are posted.’ They seems to be of the misguided belief we should be ‘fed a diet’ of anti Mottley rhetoric on a daily basis for the forum to be considered neutral.
    If persons exercise a bit of objectivity and rationality of thought, that individual refers to them as “BLP yard-fowls” and accuses them of “flying off the fence.”
    Because, to disagree with their ‘narrow minded, political perspectives’ or support a ‘government’ policy, means you’re a supporter or member of the BLP.

    Then, there are those ‘regulars’ who demand we should ‘discuss’ X, Y or Z. But, they’re never prepared to ‘start the ball rolling,’ preferring instead to wait until someone presents their opinions, to ‘throw stones from the sidelines, while bitterly insulting and criticizing them in the process.
    Their opinions are always correct and the only ones that matters. They’re quick to highlight questionable, misleading or untruthful information “in the interest of preserving historical accuracy.” Ironically, when others engage similarly, they’re accused of “playing the gotcha game,” and always focusing on “proving people wrong.”

    What I’m also seeing that’s slowly creeping in, is a distracting away from every topic, with ‘one perspective’ information about Africa. I’m NOT against anything African, but I believe everything has its time and place.

    Why not extend that person a similar courtesy you extended to GP and his ‘Sweet Sunday Sermon,’ and encourage him/her to write a blog, where they could post all their information and concentrate the ‘discussions’ there?

    Like

  • @Artax

    Yes, best advice, scroll pass. It is a discussion forum and some believe if they post the most comments it is the way to go. It is is not. It is a turn off.

    Like

  • @TheOGazerts, the overseas crew sent back over $ 376 MILLION dollars in 10 months in 2020.

    I was not one of them. I does just write shiite on BU and scroll past 90% of the comments.

    Most Bajans I know in Canada love Barbados and stay connected and supportive.

    Like

  • @Hants
    I am working on a petition for the Diaspora. Corner to be renamed as Hants Corner.

    My action are similar to yours….

    Like

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