A report in the local press yesterday piqued the curiosity. It detailed former Minister of Finance Chris Sinckler will be working with the region, including Barbados “with the reform of the international debt architecture and issues surrounding vulnerability of small states”. His involvement is as a result of an engagement with former employer Caribbean Policy Development Centre, where he was Executive Coordinator before serving in the Thompson and Stuart administrations.
A quote attributed to Sinckler – “It is critical to see how Barbados and the Caribbean can access money and develop finance on a concessional basis”.
The news item does not interest the blogmaster because Sinckler presided over a very challenging economic period as Minister of Finance and was the face of economic policy in the former administration. His appointment reminded the blogmaster how we have become slaves to debt at the level of the individual and government, technically one and the same.
There is the text book definition what is good and bad debt, we get it. Committing to a debt which helps to develop the individual to be marketable, grow and protect earning capacity, we get it. At the government level, to borrow within serviceable limits to create opportunities for citizens to enjoy quality living, we get it. Notwithstanding the foregoing it has become obvious accumulating debt is the preferred option above revenue generation in the prevailing culture of managing our affairs. According to the 2019 Financial Stability Report household debt increased by over 200% between 1999 to 2019. In the same period government’s struggled to manage the debt to GDP increased from 60% to close to 160% has been copiously documented.
It is fair to draw a conclusion the majority of households are carrying significant debt- acerbated by a deep haircut by the government in 2018 on some domestic debt compounded by the 18 month pandemic. It is also fair to describe Barbados’ economy as trapped in a vicious debt cycle given its highly leveraged state. The correlation between rising household and government debt must not be ignored. Accumulating debt has become a ‘fashionable’ first option by individuals and government alike.
In a world where debt financing is the preferred option, financial institutions as the owners of burgeoning individual and government debt have grown in importance. Something has got to give. The conspicuous consumption model to which Americans and others in the West have become addicted will not work for Barbados. We simply have no sustainable export earning options available in the short to medium term. Our problem is the exponential debt accumulated in the last 20 years has broken the back of the camel. We have sown the wind and it is time to reap the whirlwind.
As a people we have to demand better from our policymakers. Tired narratives and warm over policies must be unequivocally rejected. As individuals the time has come and gone to take ownership of home affairs by making smart decisions. Getting fat from debt financing is not the recommended way. Unfortunately if we are unable to correct, it will be done for us. In fact it has already started.
The government is you, you are the government.
Countries with the lowest national debt
Have a great day.
Does CONFESSIONAL mean they will have to confess why we need to borrow???😂😂😂😂😂😂
Dang it! I guess it is supposed to be CONCESSIONAL.
I was hoping for a confession.
It was a typo.
Vacationing in St Martin.
That little typo sent me off the track
She gave her concessions
Then went to confession
Alas, there was no redemption
For falling to temptation
Of course my favorite
There oc was a girl named Virginia. They called her Virgin for short but not for long..
— Have a great day. Hopefully, I can get back to reality —-
DavidAugust 23, 2021 4:41 AM
Countries with the lowest national debt
I see you’ve learnt one of my techniques.
The next step after identifying those countries with the lowest debt is to try to explain why.
It helps if you have some sort of personal knowledge of the country.
If there are any countries that exhibit the desirable characteristic in which you have lived or visited, start with those ones when trying to understand why.
Then read about the others and look for what is similar … the old Sesame Street method!!
However, I doubt you will find it is in the water as I have with COVID,
Debt is a bit more complicated than COVID.
Sometimes it is good to incur debt if it is directed towards building a productive capacity.
All of our old time Quaker ancestors operated that way … but they usually repaid their Friends either by making all of their businesses profitable so others in the Society could grow as well.
Else they converted their holdings to cash through the Court of Chancery and repaid their loans.
Entrusting Sinckler with this task is the same as giving a deaf-mute blind man the keys to nuclear missiles.
Let’s hope he doesn’t confuse the decimals of millions and billions. Our Supreme Leader must be vigilant and have the horsewhip ready for Sinckler before he signs any treaty.
Let’s start with oversized cabinets and largesse consultants fees
Starting at that point would help reduce debt
Then let’s people input on helping to develop an economy out of their educational knowledge and skills is taken with all serious
Presently our economy is dependent on the business proposal most foreigners whose only interest is to take out as much from this economy and direct to outside banking sources for their future security
Knowledge is power and Barbados govt has yet to resources some of the knowledge which barbadians walk around with inside their heads
Harriet Green found some surprises when she traced her family’s history in the Caribbean.
November 6, 2017
Harriet Green with daughter Nancy and mother Suzette in the Bridgetown Synagogue.
Bridgetown, Barbados. I’m sitting in a cafe in the old town overlooking the historic Garrison and the sweeping Savannah race course, waiting for historian and retired diplomat, Dr Karl Watson. He’s running late, but I’m desperate to meet him, so I’ll wait as long as it takes.
We’ve emailed, before I came to the island, and I believe he can shed important light on the Jewish contribution to West Indies history — and, more importantly to me, the history of my own family on Barbados.
Nearly three decades ago, when I last visited, I was crazy for the beaches, and rum punch at sundown. I didn’t give a hoot about why my ancestors came to the island. That’s changed. This time, I’m determined to uncover a mystery.
You see, most of my family is Jewish. But my maternal grandmother was not. At least, that’s what I thought… Born Nancy Bowring, she grew up in a family of great privilege, at the centre of Barbados white society. As a child in London, I listened rapt to tales of their grand colonial life on the island. A world that has disappeared — of tennis parties, servants and enormous houses.
They played polo and raced horses on the Savannah. My great-grandfather was the first commodore of the Yacht Club and briefly captain of the West Indies Cricket Team. In 1920 they entertained the Prince of Wales during his diplomatic tour of the Caribbean. I never thought they had Jewish roots.
Over the past few years, my mother has become increasingly curious about Nancy’s mother, my great-grandmother, Violet DaCosta. A few years ago, she found graves bearing the name DaCosta in the Barbados synagogue. We’ve done lots of research since then — spent many hours in the British Library — but stalled at the end of the 18th century. Then an email from Dr Karl Watson arrived in my inbox in early July, and the pieces started to fall into place. I knew I had to meet him face-to-face.
Waiting to meet him with me is Miguel Pena, head of the National Trust of Barbados. Miguel has been showing me round the island all morning, on a bespoke heritage tour, learning about how this island, 100 miles east of the other West Indian islands, came to be so important to the British Empire, and to the sugar trade.
In the centre of old Bridgetown, we stopped to look at a very old department store, DaCosta & Co. I’d heard about it many times before, but posing for a photo with my teenage daughter felt very special. The store was founded by my great-great-great-grandfather, David DaCosta, a hugely successful businessman known as the “Napoleon of Commerce”. Records show that he was christened aged five, in 1824, but came from a Sephardic Jewish family.
His own father, Isaac Hisquia DaCosta (1790-1852) was brought up Jewish but left the synagogue after marrying on the neighbouring island of St Vincent.
Why? Well it turns out that Isaac’s wife was a “free coloured woman”, Rebecca — most likely my great-great-great-great grandmother.
I’d discovered this on a genealogical website just before my visit, and wondered how common it was for a Jewish man to marry a black woman in the early 1800s. Was this why Isaac left the synagogue, and had his son christened?
The synagogue is the oldest in the so-called New World, but fell into disuse and had to be saved from demolition by Sir Paul Altman, whose family came to Barbados in 1931. Now painstakingly restored, the synagogue site (including a cemetery and mikvah) is a prized Barbados National Trust property protected by Unesco within the World Heritage Site of Historic Bridgetown.
Beside it, there’s a wonderful museum of Jewish history. Here, guided by the architect Geoff Ramsey, I find DaCosta among other Sephardic names listed abundantly on the restored gravestones. Then I sit and watch a film about how the Jews came to Barbados.
You probably know some of the story already. It starts in Spain, where Jews flourished during the Golden Age of the late middle ages but were forcibly converted after the Moorish rulers were expelled. Many Jews fled to nearby Portugal, only to be followed there by the Inquisition — so they fled again to Amsterdam. And from Amsterdam, many travelled to Recife in Brazil (then owned by the Dutch), looking for new opportunities. When the Inquisition arrived there, the Jews fled again, some finding their way to Barbados.
At my hotel, while others were swimming, I retreated to my room to study my notes. I’d found out a lot in the British Library, in Arnold Wizinitzer’s seminal book Jews in Colonial Brazil. There were references to DaCostas in Recife. Staring over the veranda at the silhouetted heads bobbing in the still waters of the Caribbean, I wondered if those Recife DaCostas might have been my direct ancestors.
According to Wizinitzer, around 150 Jewish families left Brazil in 1654, when the Inquisition arrived there. But some stayed in the New World — founding new Jewish communities in the Caribbean — including Barbados, a British haven recently opened to them by Oliver Cromwell.
It’s intriguing to think I might be descended from these founding refugees, because, despite their small numbers, Jews played a huge role in the island’s early development.
It may not seem so very clever now, but what those Brazilian Jews knew about windmills and how best to extract sugar from cane, revolutionised the sugar trade and significantly boosted production.
There’s a dark side to this. The sugar trade flourished exactly in proportion to the African slave trade, which boomed in the mid-to-late 1600s. From 1627 to 1807, it is estimated 387,000 Africans were shipped to the island against their will. To be perfectly clear: the wealth of the island (and perhaps my forebears) was a direct result of appalling suffering.
By the 19th century, the Jewish community had dramatically declined as the sugar industry faltered, alongside natural disasters and assimilation.
A note in the Jewish museum suggested that many Jewish men married black women, and popular surnames on the island today testify to a Sephardi heritage: Massiah, Aboab, Carvalho, Abrahams, DaCosta, DePeiza, Daneils, Shannon, Pinto and Lindo.
Many (like my ancestor David DaCosta) were assimilated into the white Christian community. It’s hard to establish why, in any particular case, because the records don’t explain. It could have been in preparation for marriage, Miguel suggests, to facilitate overseas travel, or just for social mobility.
Whatever the reason, the once thriving Jewish community on Barbados dwindled to just one observant Jew, who negotiated the deconsecration and sale of the building in 1929. Bevis Marks Synagogue in London acted as trustee taking custody of the Torah, silver breastplate, pointer, cup and candlesticks.
Briefly, the building became headquarters of the Turf Club. My great-grandfather, William — Nancy’s father — was its first treasurer. I doubt he had any idea that his wife Violet’s ancestors had once worshipped there, or that decades later his family would visit its restoration.
Outside the gleaming synagogue there’s a mikvah, excavated in 2008. I’d never been inside a mikvah before, and as I walked down the steps with my mother and daughter something clicked — there are ghosts everywhere. Three generations of DaCosta descendants have returned to a place where our ancestors once bathed more than two centuries before. It’s incredibly moving.
Back at the Garrison, Dr Watson finally arrives, looking dapper in panama hat, white shirt and jeans.
I’ve been hoping for the impossible: that he will tell me everything. Plainly, he can’t. Nobody can. But he sets a large notebook on the table before him and flicks through pages of handwritten pencil notes.
Here, he finds evidence that takes me back one generation before Isaac DaCosta. Isaac’s birth is noted in the synagogue records as 5539 Nisan (25 July 1779), along with his father’s name, Benjamin Henriques DaCosta. Karl also holds copies of various DaCosta wills, the oldest dated 1740.
Wow. I’m so pleased. But there’s still much to do if I’m to trace my family back to Recife. From our email exchanges, I’ve learned that Karl knew my family and my great-grandmother Violet.
His own family have been on the island since the 17th century, brought over as indentured servants. Like others in the poor white community, he grew up in a modest wooden chattel house. His was close to my family’s much grander residences. I ask what he remembers. What was my great-grandmother like?
He looks a little awkward. The former diplomat in him struggles to find something positive.
When he was a boy, he says, eventually, he sold Remembrance Day poppies. At my family’s house, Karl was taken to the servant’s entrance, to be given a coin on a silver plate and a pat on the head from Violet.
He says that visiting their house was like visiting Buckingham Palace — and not, one senses, in a good way.
Well, I never met Violet. But I did know her children, including my wonderful grandmother Nancy, after whom my own daughter is named.
Nancy left Barbados as a young woman and came to London. She met my grandfather, a Jewish doctor, and converted to Judaism at West London Synagogue in 1935.
Did she think of this as some kind of return, to the Jewish faith of her DaCosta forebears? Or was it just chance? Like so much else, I will never know.
Cobbler’s Cove, where Harriet stayed, offers bespoke heritage tours for guests led by Miguel Pena, head of the National Trust of Barbados, and can include the synagogue and excavated mikvah.
Concessionary/Concessional financing, is a misnomer. The concession is in terms of interest rate and the repayment period. Not the loan itself.
Most loans from the bi-lateral bodies already carry interest rates which do not reflect the real risk. The other half is called kicking the can down the road, extended repayment time.
The bi-lateral loans from entities funded by the G7 and G20 countries are ALREADY monies those countries are borrowing. Only a minute percentage can balance their budgets. The USA hasn’t had a balanced budget since the early 70s.
So the question is who owns these debts?
Fire at mall
@ NorthernObserver August 23, 2021 9:44 AM
The world belongs to the capitalists. This is true globally, in the USA, the EU and China.
In terms of Barbados, this means that the island does not belong to the naive masses and their so-called political representatives like our GG in her so-called costumes, but to Baron Kyffin of Simpson, Saint Charles, Dr. h.c. Bizzy, Mr Jerkham, the Concrete Man and some other gentlemen.
So, to document the true balance of power, we should adjust the list of national heroes and erect a monument to the richest businessman on the sacked Nelson’s pedestal. We should ask ourselves openly and honestly why we have only socialists, social workers and other unproductive rabble as national heroes.
Shouldn’t we honour and admire those who are successful in their professions instead of looting taxpayers’ money?
@ NorthernObserver at 9:44AM
The debts are fiat debts,in the same manner as the dollar in you pocket is fiat money. Somebody somewhere decided let there be debt and there was.
The question – is it sustainable?
You will find the Quakers and the Jews were close.
The Quakers, like the Puritans were thrown up during the Reformation period which was driven by the availability of the Translation of Bible.
It was no longer only available in Latin.
Key to its Old Testament translation would have been the Hebrew Scholars displaced from Spain and Portugal who wound up in Amsterdam.
Holland was religiously tolerant.
The Jews had been banned from England since 1290 and England was just across the channel.
The challenge for both the Puritans and the Quakers was that the Book of Revelation (New Testament) deals with the Jews and the Second Coming of Christ.
Once the Puritans won the English Civil War, they set about moving to allow the Jews back into England.
Cromwell, in 1655, formalized it.
The Quakers arrived on the scene during the Civil War.
Many were originally Puritans and pursued the spreading of the Gospel earnestly.
Many Jews became Christians in Barbados.
@ David Bu
It will be as long as it is serving a utilitarian purpose. Man is very creative. The important objectives are to create the goods and services required by man and to distribute them as efficiently as possible. As NO averred,it appears like kicking the can further down the street. That buys time to contrive something new and more acceptable.
Bear in mind the thesis of this item is about the debt load being carried based on a consumption behaviour that is unsustainable.
@ David Bu
At what point is a debt load unsustainable? Who determines that? Is it based on an objective criterion? I am sure there are countries,using this metric ,that has a debt /GDP ratio almost double that of Barbados. What is the objective measure of unsustainable consumption? And who is doing the consuming? Not the man in the street.
Thought we had accepted acid tests/ratios that determine measures.
The picture at the top is misleading as the People of Barbados are not modern slaves and are bog standard old time slaves from the good old days of slavery when sub human people knew their place or were whipped with a good old bible reading to teach them real good how to be good or suffer as beasts of burden like tortured animals.
Bonds may be one the the safest forms of investments as Big Banks specialising in Bonds bought ownership of the world’s largest Global Investment Banks who went long on bundled up mortgage and debt instruments of MBS and ABS US debt as they were categorised as fixed income and safe as houses during the mergers and acquisitions takeovers in the aftermath of global financial crises and insolvent bankrupted banks. However some bonds fail and are known as junk bonds and not worth the paper they are written on.
Investments can go down as well as up an Investors in Government Bonds of Barbados should just eat up the shit and write off losses on their books. They must have been stupid deluded mugs and suckers to buy that Bajan sovereign debt shit which was obviously bad shit.
Karma is a bitch. Blacks from Africa who were members of the human race were robbed kidnapped labelled and branded slaves and the property of the Royal Family slave trade businesses, where old pirates claimed they proved legal ownership of stolen people with paperwork of mickey mouse trades of pure junk like cowrie shells glass beads and manilla or goods and products with so called added value like alcohol tobacco and guns.
what do slaves know about the banking
Barbados should dick their debtors which is the means of freeing yourself up from debt slavery
A ghetto man does not need to brag or boast
but walk the most talk the most love the most
and travel from coast to coast
I am Gifted Unlimited Rhyme Universal
aka Guru: Everything you need to know
Perhaps Barbados should pass on it’s sovereign debt to Queen Elizabeth II when they became independent like Liberace
Full name :
Elizabeth Alexandra Mary Windsor
London SW1A 1AA
Windsor SL4 1NJ
Ballater AB35 5TB
Correct. And that is reason my brainiac nephew on Wall St, is so big on crypto. Likely why @Pacha is so confident in the demise of $US.
If today I had to extend my thesis of 40 years ago, Debt: Incarceration without Walls, it would likely see the FANGs of the globe issuing their own currency. Maybe even buying/assuming lands for their base.
The perspective that Sovereign Debt is backed by that Sovereign’s ability to tax grows weaker with each passing year. And one the Chinese do not share, as they want collateral for their money.
The issue for us guys is after a default and debt restructuring coupled to a major drop in our one legged economy tourism, how will we be viewed as a Sovereign Guarantor now? What is our true debt service ability factor today based on current income and expenditure? Are we as a country now seen as insolvent in terms of debt service ?
These are the topics the politicians don’t want to face so the red herrings get thrown at us instead. Republic, same sex marriage and anything else in the desk draw. Unfortunately even the opposition fly on the bait and refuse to demand a discussion on our economic reality. So who de ass will bother to pay a shopkeeper in de bush any mind!
“His appointment reminded the blogmaster how we have become slaves to debt at the level of the individual and government, technically one and the same.”
that’s all the islands will ALWAYS BE….politicians with slick tongues…begging for votes only to become ministers/misleaders outfitted with BEGGING BOWLS….since they won’t stop tiefing…and make it even worse with the corruption……
stuck in the matrix..few will want to detach themselves…that’s on them, the system needs Slaves anyway…for those who got the syndrome..
N d Bush!!
“ Unfortunately even the opposition fly on the bait and refuse to demand a discussion on our economic reality. So who de ass will bother to pay a shopkeeper in de bush any mind!”
1 + 1 = 2 in de bush.
Today’s mathematical delinquents.
@ David Bu at 11:28 AM
Acid tests have shelf lives as well. The reality is that those who designed them were the first to break” the rules of thumb” when the going got tough. The ratios were just that rules of thumb. At the individual level there was a rule of thumb that house mortgages should be some multiple of one’s annual salary. Subsequent events also caused that to change. So we are in an era of rapid change as circumstances change.
@ NO at 12: 43 PM
I love that insightful remark re the Chinese acquiring/requiring collateral for their loans.
After three and half years of this govt
Debt levels continue to climb
When will this govt implement policies that are long term sustainable in helping to pay debt
When in opposition this govt told all and sundry that taxing the people was not a sustainable way of paying debt
However this govt has not hide away from burdening the people with more taxation
With a new election months away
Will this govt tell the people of new policies they have in lowering of debt
I doubt not as govt hides under the COvid umbrella finding all kind of excuses as to why Barbados debt levels continue to climb
So far all I have heard and seen and done from govt are buildings blown up
Buses and garbage trucks delivered
Talk of having more parks and legacy
But not one word on govt policies for lowering of debt
It most likely would be the same ole IMF path of borrowing and placing the debt on the shoulders of the people
One day coming soon the people voices would say enough is enough
BLP will be odds on favourites to win a second term. Sometimes it is better to have grace to live an easier and happier life. Politics is not as much fun as partying as any youth and young minded oldie can tell you as you only have one life to live and you have to live it.
Government Debt is not the same as Personal Debt which is a burden on people that causes stress and anxiety.
Seems like Bajans talk about politics more than politicians do, maybe they should go into career politics.
Today’s Nation editorial.
angela cox August 24, 2021 4:52 AM #: “When will this govt implement policies that are long term sustainable in helping to pay debt?”
Could you please list and explain at least THREE (3) long term, sustainable policies ‘government’ has not introduced so far, you believe it should implement in helping to reduce debt?
Our situation. Is really very simple and does not require all this long talk. It’s like this as anyone with a basic knowledge of figures will tell you.
If you spend more than you earn you will have a debt. If you continue to do it the debt gets bigger and bigger. Eventually the debt will get to a point where your salary can not service it and Courts will come for the Tv and Courtesy for the car. You have only 2 ways out your hole. Cut your expenses to suit your reduced income or increase your income to service your higher expenses.
Dem is no 3rd option sorry!
What about the addiction to debt (consumption) at the household level? Is it time to take individual responsibility or should the government impose measures to force that change.
ArtaxAugust 24, 2021 8:06 AM
angela cox August 24, 2021 4:52 AM #: “When will this govt implement policies that are long term sustainable in helping to pay debt?”
Could you please list and explain at least THREE (3) long term, sustainable policies ‘government’ has not introduced so far, you believe it should implement in helping to reduce debt
That is not my job to list any thing
Govt has said many hands make light work when quizzed by the numerous consultants and over size cabinet
Hence hands of the many hired for govt purpose are those whose should have economic decisions to stave off the climbing debt
Govt said that the default had opened an economic way for saving
Since those words were uttered govt transfered some of those savings to businesses by tax waivers and lowering of taxes and debt write off for business
However the debt continues to climb
All I am asking going forward with no sustainable economic policies
How much borrowing does govt expect to do
Yes you are correct and every Barbadian has to also do the same thing in their personal finances too. We all collectively can’t go on like it’s business as usual. If you went to Chefette every weekend then go every other now. Make some basic changes that will bring expenses in line with reduced income. Also everyone must remember too that prices of items are going to increase because of massive increases in freight. We all may need to “brand down” and look at cheaper options there too. The freight out of China is now practically 3 times higher than it was last year. There is a shortage of containers and some ports are talking about not accepting new loads until the containers in the shipping yards are reduced. There is a whole global storm brewing with supply and demand and we will not escape it. We just need to spend wisely and weather it.
This is the point that translates the last line in the blog. It starts and ends with the man and woman in the mirror. The fear is that financial stress COVID 19 is exerting in households compounded by expected increases in many commodities- as you know we are price takers – we will continue to see a decimation of the quality of life in many households. Contrary to popular opinion it will straddle so-called low to high income households.
Truth is no one will escape the price increases. As usual the poor and middle class will feel it worst but even the rich will not escape it.
It is these types of conversations that our leaders need to have with the public. Our people need to understand what is coming and prepare for it. They need to all like now, start rethinking purchases and not wait till the reality is at our doorsteps. Having said that if you need to change a fridge this may well be the time to do it as freight prices are increasing. As usual our leaders choose to focus on other things though and will simply blame the merchants when the price increases come.
With a general election less than 2 years away and a gullible public consumed with other matters, do not hold your breath. This talk about government creating a buffer to buffer spikes in prices, how realistic is that given the way the economy is structured read education, healthcare, maintaining infrastructure and other services citizens look to government to support.
The majority of Barbadians have no idea the tenuous state of play.
You have the addiction in your opposition to personal consumption? Whether the payment is by some form of debt, or savings, people will consume. Debt no longer scares, nor is unavailable, to the current 30-55 generation.
Without the tourist consumption, all is dependant on local. The GoB isn’t going to discourage this. Given the VAT and duties, excise etc, the GoB benefits too.
No issue with debt as declared in the blog, it is the underlying behaviour shaping the decision to take on debt at individual and government level that we must unfreeze based on what is unfolding around us.
John A August 24, 2021 8:14 AM #: “Dem is no 3rd option sorry!”
Sorry, I disagree. There are at least five (5) more options.
And, YES, some sort of “long talk is required,” especially as it relates to reducing government expenditure.
angela cox August 24, 2021 8:59 AM
Your response was predictable.
You continually give BU the impression ONLY businesses BENEFITED from the ‘tax write offs,’ when you know it was also EXTENDED to INDIVIDUALS who owed taxes for the ‘write off period’ as well.
What “debt write off for business” are you referring to?
What is clear is that we will never get anywhere economically with this cursed Barbados dollar. We are the most expensive black country on the globe. Those are the facts. Why is that? Because the BBD is grossly overvalued after the financial illiterate Barrow, a so-called national hero (for what???) confused the digit “2” with the digit “5” after a night of heavy drinking with his socialist ministers. We need a 1:5 currency adjustment and in return the abolition of all import tariffs.
I think the transition to a republic on 1 October 2021 on the occasion of our Supreme Leader’s birthday would be the right moment to exchange the dollar notes and dollar coins for republican coins and then devalue them in fine print. The naive masses, whipped up by blind nationalism, will probably only notice before Christmas when they buy glass marbles for their loved ones.
With the exception of the two Williams brothers, our locals are far too fat anyway. So if after a devaluation they can only buy half the sugar food, they will finally become slim and healthy again.
“I think the transition to a republic on 1 October 2021 on the occasion of our Supreme Leader’s birthday would be the right moment to exchange the dollar notes and dollar coins for republican coins and then devalue them in fine print. The naive masses, whipped up by blind nationalism, will probably only notice before Christmas when they buy glass marbles for their loved ones.”
stands to reason that if we are to remove what we have, we must replace it with a better system which is more effective in keeping politicians from abusing their position. No proposal which betters what we have has been put forward.
What other options are brought will only be hybrid options of the ones I mentioned, as they are only 2 ways to adjust any form of deficit. One is to reduce spending and the other to increase revenue. Whether you decide to do it with borrowed money or you own, when ever dun you have the same 2 options.
My point is that government needs to start discussing our reality with the people as opposed to focusing on distractions. How long you think we can go on with current expenditure where our income levels are ? Another 6 months or a year if you push it? Eventually we will reach a level of unservicable debt and we both know that.
Start the conversation don’t go the Sinkyuh route and pretend all is rosey so as to get to elections. You will be respected more for having the open conversation I can assure you.
John A August 24, 2021 3:02 PM
Your original argument at John A August 24, 2021 8:14 AM was, “If you spend more than you earn you will have a DEBT.”
And, now you’re ‘talking’ about a ‘DEFICIT.’
Although ‘deficit and debt’ are related, we often conflate or tend to use the terms interchangeably.
Politicians deal in votes around election time. It is far easier to discuss distractions, for most voters can understand them. Financial matters of depth only confuse and open the door to discussions they wish to avoid. And we know the mismanagement includes “both ah dem”. They deal in financial generalities not specifics. Which usually amounts to past incidents.
Recall even an economics lecturer, and former B candidate, admitted to not understanding the scope of what became a partial default.
As the racing pundit used to say…best left alone.
@ John A August 24, 2021 3:02 PM
My point is that government needs to start discussing our reality with the people as opposed to focusing on distractions. How long you think we can go on with current expenditure where our income levels are ? Another 6 months or a year if you push it? Eventually we will reach a level of unservicable debt and we both know that. (Unquote).
It’s the hallmark of a ‘true’ citizen when he or she refuses to fall for and ingest the regular load of political bullshit and bluster emanating from the empty heads of Bajan politicians and their ‘vassal’ of cronies branded with both political stripes.
And you my friend “John A”, the King of Commonsense, represents the highest carat of that hallmark.
The Bajan Treasury will be soon confronted with a serious fiscal deficit never seen before since Independence.
If the current public sector payroll is to be maintained for partisan political purposes where, then, would the money come if not from additional burdens on the taxpaying camel’s back?
The question is whether these harsh additional impositions would come before or after early elections in 2022?
What else is there to tax besides fast foods, VAT on water, and religion?
If Bajans think that their current sugar daddy IMF is going to be their saviour of a pied piper without demanding its pound of serious sacrificial flesh in the form a currency adjustment to their Mickey mouse currency then, according to our BU court jester Tron, they having to be living in some la la land dotted with the mirage of an economic apple pie made from Swiss cheese.
How in the financial world of economic tarnation could a Bajan Mickey mouse buck be worth more than its shareholder Master the TT$ vis-à-vis the modern US $ Greenback?
When all is said and done Sinckler would be used as the economic gopher to access loans while Mia hides in the background avoiding licks and names attached to her namely
Champion of Borrowers
Deficit is no more than an accumulation of debt over a specified period. Let us focus on the reality that months of revenue shortfall will end in accumulated debt and 12 months of a calender year of this will lead to a large annual deficit. In the end in simple terms ” we going owe way nuff and we cheque book light.”
What is the status of the BOSS program?
I agree with all you have said but whenever the tap dancing and shape shifting done, the numbers will be there staring us in the face. We are going to be in a serious situation in 12 months time unless tourism receipts grow by large amounts. It’s either that or we restructure our expenses aggressively.
Now having said that I heard our tourism people bragging that we had over 10,000 arrivals in July, which was the best month for the year so far. Still down on 2019 of course.
But then low and behold an Antiguan business friend of mine call me laughing at we and say in July them had 24,000 arrivals which was even up on their 2019, which was their bumper year! So I got to ask what Antigua doing that we ain’t? You feel it is Nelson Dock Yard? Then I hear Grenada doing the dog too. Anyhow when we turn republic all will be milk and honey again. That is why I say when all the noise and fluff done we still will have major issues that lack discussion.
Thanks for your kind words, but you know if you critical of the divine rulers you is a dem. Well I really don’t give a rats derriere about politics, but I do care about where we are heading and await the plan for getting out of there.
What is undisputable is that every month we run a deficit will mean that the chance of a quick recovery becomes further from our grasp. I also am very disappointed in the opposition and the Cave Hill economist for not entering into open discussions on the economy. But then again should I expect different ?
DavidAugust 24, 2021 7:42 PM
What is the status of the BOSS program?
The same as always rob the poor to.pay the rich
@ John A August 24, 2021 7:36 PM
Everyone knows ‘government’ spending more than it earns results in a ‘budget deficit,’ an accumulation of which creates debt.
But, you’re missing the point. Anyhow, let’s not take the ‘discussion’ any further and ‘agree to disagree’ in the process.
@ John A August 24, 2021 7:49 PM
Our tourist numbers are disastrously low because we brutally discourage tourists. Our politicians are infected by some kind of Corona hysteria. The fact is that the official Taliban PC test on entry currently takes 2-3 days and many emails to clear. It is harder to get into Barbados than it is to get into Kabul Airport from Kabul City, thanks to quarantine mania.
The fact is that our population is to blame if it falls seriously ill with Corona. The majority of our population has the weight of a fattened ox because they drink to much Coca-Cola and eat too many burgers. We don’t have a Corona problem, we have a very massive obesity problem in our indigenous population. Our population should take the example of the two slim Williams brothers. They are very smart.
If we still have these Taliban rules against international tourism in the winter season 21/22, we will go down. Since we have about 50 per cent too many civil servants and workers in the SOEs and no serious reform is in sight, we are likely to move to devaluation soon. We will soon need new banknotes anyway because of the transformation into a republic, so it won’t be an issue if our central bank adjusts the exchange rate a little. This will be very beneficial for our population, since they will have less money to kill themselves with fast food.
Many other pepper islands in our neighbourhood are much less xenophobic. I increasingly have the impression that foreigners are no longer welcome here, even though they bring billions to us every year. The horrific attacks on minorities and business people during the Nelson riots last year raised alarm bells among many.
I don’t have the answers but I can tell you anytime in a given month Antigua can attract 2.4 times the amount of tourist as us something wrong!
Now let me give you some numbers from one of the largest data sites on tourism that nobody likes to talk about. It is a site called tourismanalytics.com. Now her are the Jan- june numbers for the major 23 destinations in the region combined.
Now we tourism gurus here telling people that we going be up this year arrival wise by 20% but so far Barbados running down January to June 2021 on 2020, so how we going be up 20% by December? Now Aruba and a few other places are doing good and are up over 30% on 2020, but most of the Caribbean down. So if we down roughly on 23 markets by 10% on average over 2020 and 2020 was roughly only 40% of 2019 figures, how the hell tourism could lead any recovery for we in 2021- 2022?
Wunna don’t take my word go to tourismanalytics.com and read the data for wunna self. Them got a wash pan of data on tourism with more graphs and comparison reports than cattlewash Beach got moss! So when wunna done read some of it, ask the CTO based on all that independent data where the hell a 20% increase in tourism arrivals coming from in 2021 over 2020, which remember was only 40% of 2019 to begin wid!
Wunna beginning to understand yet the dire state our economy is in now with us depending on tourism as we salvation ?
For clarity the years for the above figures shown in ascending order so this is what it is for those that don’t want to work it out for the Jan-June periods.
The M is for millions.
Inserted the link to the primary info here:
David how come when I type in years in front amounts dem don’t show?
then you know why A & B is sooooo much better off.
Here in Barbados, people who invest many millions are harassed on entry. They have to stay in a shabby hotel like Sandy Lane for 2-4 days after entry and cannot enjoy the pleasant amenities of their villa. For me, this is clearly a violation of the UN Charter on Human Rights if you have no access to a private swimming-pool.
I predict that we will be totally left behind by the other pepper islands in the winter season. We are at the bottom of the league in tourism regionally and have a reputation for being xenophobic.
p.s. I am not writing this as a criticism of our honourable government. But our government obviously has the wrong medical and economic advisers.
and keep the wicked, THIEVING hands of the williams and other MINORITY CRIMINALS out of the Black population’s pension fund…time to lock up the thieving hoteliers for robbing the workers their salaries, severance and benefits..or find yaselves EXPOSED EVERYWHERE…
yardfowls/-Slaves too love to glorify debt Slavery…hear them ” oh we are so fortunate to be in debt..be thankful we got more loans.. for another 4-5 generations, couldn’t do it without DBLP..we gotta keep voting for them”….
useless clowns will never know the difference between slavery and freedom..
Thanks that site is a wealth of data
Have we identified the reason Barbados is lagging the others destinations?
Those questions remain unanswered. We have no time for such trivial matters as we have a republic to introduce in a few weeks.
What is clear is that our neighbours are running circles around us in terms of tourism recovery, especially Antigua, St Lucia and Grenada. When Antigua in July can beat the arrival figures for 2019 which was their bumper year what does that tell you?
Read the above article posted this morning, and tell me if the money received from the IMF is REPAYABLE.
It is NOT a loan. And the LoO cannot accuse Bdos of going further into debt?
An SDR is a unit used by the IMF.
@ John A August 25, 2021 7:48 AM
We see a clear redistribution in the regional tourism market, away from Barbados to the other pepper islands. Our government must be hell-bent on not making this development permanent, because after the racist Nelson riots, many foreigners got the impression that they are no longer welcome on our island. However, I can well imagine that we will be permanently left behind in the tourism market because we are not cosmopolitan enough and too expensive.
One more remark: Currently, almost no “normal” tourists come to us. Our visitors are mostly impoverished Windrushers from the US and UK who are visiting their relatives here after the pandemic has cleared. This group unfortunately leaves very little money with us, e.g. when they stay overnight with their local relatives.
These days all we get are pitiful crocodile tears. We all know that our tourism product has been declining for at least 35/40 years.
Racism, stifling of tourism business opportunities for small black operations, blaming beach vendors , treating black American tourists very poorly, allowing the once beautiful infrastructure to become run down.
And in more recent times allowing two top , visionary tourism executives with proven track records to end up elsewhere simply for political reasons.
A lot of square pegs in round holes ………
We have always believed that sea and sun were exclusively divined gifts that nobody else had.
Drowning in crocodile tears…………
More to come.
To be honest I blow past that article and smile. If you in a hole and I give you some money and you eat through that and tell me it ain’t no loan so it don’t matter well power to you my friend.
William there is not doubt that Petra has made a positive impact on Grenada’s tourism.
Check your email
@ David August 25, 2021 7:38 AM
The main reason is obvious. We have one of the strictest Corona protocols in the region. I refer you to my link to A & B, which consists of a simple Corona test before entry. Our protocol was designed with the intention of deterring entry and isolating our island. Almost like Australia New Zealand. Our protocol costs tourists at least 500 USD per person when I add testing costs and hotel costs.
@ William Skinner August 25, 2021 8:05 AM
Thank you for your comment. By the word xenophobic, I mean primarily other nationalities. If visitors no longer feel welcome, they will be welcomed with open arms in A & B or Grenada.
Received from John A.
Thanks wunna find it strange that of the 23 countries reviewed the only one that did not submit data was Bim? LOL
We had to take a PCR test 48/72 hours before departing for the island. The results had to be negative.
Purchase health insurance for US $15.00/person.
A temperature check when we landed.
Daily temperature check for 5 days.
Wearing masks whilst on the hotel premises.
We must take a PCR test prior to departure (within 72 hours)
When reading the requirements over the internet they seem very restrictive, but I have found that they do not impact on our movement/comfort.
Thanks for posting the graphs. What they clearly show contrary to what our government is saying, is that the data does not support any claim that we can expect a 20% growth in tourism during 2021. Further from a growth the region is actually down on 2020 mostly. Yes Antigua and a few others are doing well in terms of recovery on 2020, but the half year figures show a 20% growth as our minister is claiming will happen is not a reality.
So my question which I have been asking for the last year is ” what is de plan?”
The narrative from the general population is also disappointing.
Our government has not implemented the far too strict Corona Protocol out of its own conviction. The fault lies with the opposition, especially Senator Caswell, who incite the population with xenophobic and homophobic slogans. Also partly responsible are our Taliban doctors who would prefer to bar all foreigners or impose a quarantine of several months.
There are two things we need to admit here:
1. The government must be complimented for its handling of the COVID crisis;
2. In recent weeks the message/ information has been somewhat muddled.
Finally, we can talk all we like but we cannot afford any major break out of any virus. Anytime we experience 500 + deaths we are into the dark ages socially and economically.
It is absolutely amazing that we have failed to change our thinking and economic planning although the es noire globe is moving in different directions.
We are still trying to squeeze the little that is left out of outdated economic thinking that in reality has never been seriously beneficial to us.
There is a lot of intellectual dishonesty because those “ learned” ones who cannot be ignorant of present realities, are still feeding the government a lot of outdated crap.
We need to l bel with the people and set new realistic , attainable and sustainable goals. The first major occupation should be to create new jobs in emerging new enterprises. Silenced the voices of the traditional corporate/ business sector who are stuck in the retail thinking of the slave days.
More crocodile tears to come……
Barbados has always been proud of their reputation as a racist destination….that ignorance will now bring them to their knees, no one wants to be around black on black racists pimping for white tourists….nor wicked racist hoteliers, it will now all come FULL CIRCLE…..goddamn beggars, not doers nor creatives..
the article clearly said it was not a loan, Barbados gets grants…ALL THE TIME from EU and other countries… especially for EDUCATION and never deem it necessary to tell the people, playing their yardfowl/Slave games…
Wuhloss…still confirming but is this a relative of Sir Cocaine Trafficker threatening and calling shots…it’s been decades the sensible members of the population have been hoping to see the backs of these criminals…one less cartel/ syndicate to rid out of Black lives.
“Heard she had a meeting with the private sector an ryan haloute get on bad saying if she ever lock down again he sending home all 800 workers .”….
@ William Skinner August 25, 2021 9:52 AM
Our population is only susceptible to severe courses of the Corona virus because they have evolved from the lean African type to the fat white US type.
Please tell me why our businessmen and their unemployed employees are responsible for the population becoming as fat as hippos?
More food price increase for the Barbadian household and not a,word from govt asking the private business to yield on the side of commonsense under harsh economic circumstances many households have to undergo
Where is the promise of Hope
Asking for a friend
If we don’t want to end up as concentration camps under tropical skies like Australia and New Zealand, we need enough vaccine by autumn.
Vaccination is the final solution, not what the BAMP Taliban tell us about masks and Corona camps.
The people hungry can’t find RH job
Govt collecting money from the IMF and boasting about the 2.5billion in reserves
None of which is alloted to help the suffering bajan
Matter of fact that 2.5billion would be loaded of the people back
And all day long the long winded talk about CoVID and Republic
First of all govt have no cure for CoviD which means that after two years of nuff talk on BU there is an ongoing attempt to use COVID as a distraction away from the economic malaise which this country is heading
Now comes along COVID the ultimate distraction which also does not lend itself to BARBADOS having a better economy
Guh long keep fooling wunna self while the last economic wheel call tourism falls off the wagon and govt have nothing not even a screw driver hammer or nut to replace it
withh…What abunch of bumbleheads
To be fair we can’t blame government or the retailers for these increases. The dam commodity prices are up and to make it worst the freight rates are at the highest levels in 20 years. What we need to do is start plowing up some grown and planting corn as that is a major input for animal feed. Let we stop moaning and start acting.
Who should be blamed for moving the economy to one that is significantly dependent on imports?
@ John A
For the last several years , many entrepreneurs tried to get into live stock feed production.
. Several of the products were used but they all floundered. Once more we failed to invest in our people. Note Roberts is an excellent and exciting story of local manufacturing but competing with other locally produced products could have helped to keep prices competitive and create employment.
The same can be said of efforts in the fishing industry and some agro based industries as well.
Once more we shed crocodile tears……..
William Skinner August 25, 2021 2:13 PM #: “Roberts is an excellent and exciting story of local manufacturing but competing with other locally produced products could have helped to keep prices competitive and create employment.”
@ Mr. Skinner
What other local manufacturers produce lard, margarine, shortening, cooking oils, poultry and live stock feeds that competes with Roberts Manufacturing?
In June 2021, a Jamaican investment company called PROVEN Investments Limited (PROVEN), acquired 50.5% interest in Roberts from Massy.
And, you have a situation where Massy owns both wholesale and retail outlets. Also, bear in mind, the company has been systematically closing subsidiary companies.
What is there to prevent the owners from moving operations to Trinidad or Jamaica, where production costs are probably lower, and then importing products through Massy’s distribution outlets to be sold at cheaper prices in its retail outlets?
They don’t have to be cheaper, the owners merely have to make more 💰?
I don’t understand your comment.
” @ Mr. Skinner
What other local manufacturers produce lard, margarine, shortening, cooking oils, poultry and live stock feeds that competes with Roberts Manufacturing? ”
Note I was speaking of livestock feed products. I specifically said:
“For the last several years , many entrepreneurs tried to get into live stock feed production.
. Several of the products were used but they all floundered.”
I never said that other local manufacturers were producing : lard, shortening, cooking oils and that they were competing with Roberts.
I specifically said that those who tried to produce livestock feeds had floundered. I merely stated that with more investment in that area and others fishing and agro based industries might have resulted more competition resulting in better prices for the consumer.
I hope this clarifies my line of thought.
Nothing drives dynamic pricing like competition. We have not invested wisely in developing new industries to give consumers a broader choice of products.,Massey’s presence has not stopped Popular or other retail outlets from attracting consumers. Harrison’s, Cave Shepherd , and Fogartys never stopped the 5 and Ten or NE Wilson.
Where are our food scientists ?
We have an archaic form of doing and developing businesses that has us stuck in a mentality that’s self defeating.
We have this bogey man condemnation of Massey while forgetting that BS and T opened the door for Massey. Long before that JulieN had exposed the backward thinking of the white traditional business sector.
It’s the same damn thing with Sandals we cuss them left and right but what did we produce that could have stopped Sandals from being here ? Where was the competition ? How many five star hotels do we have after sixty years of tourism? What are we manufacturing these days ?
Nothing but crocodile tears…………
You too love a little racial commentary?
What all Barbadian businesses have been challenged with is export, whether it is a business model or a product or service.
If you seek competition, look at the bakery sector. How many do we have? How many operate beyond the island?
The rum sector, excluding Foursquare fell into foreign hands. That is because they had trouble exporting, and hence the entity was ‘more valuable’ to those who could export.
How many of the indigenous ‘offshore finance’ operations exist elsewhere? Meanwhile several of those operating here are subsidiaries of foreign entities.
Simpson was good at it, the replication of a model elsewhere, and did very well. And despite “advisors” he was a one man show.
So not sure who the “we” you speak of is, seems to me it is “all ah we”. The Gov job is framework, it is “we” who do the work.
@ Mr. Skinner
Honestly, I completely missed your initial comment about “many entrepreneurs tried to get into live stock feed production,”………….. because “Roberts is an excellent and exciting story of local manufacturing but competing with other LOCALLY PRODUCED PRODUCTS,” immediately caught my attention. And, I responded accordingly.
Additionally, I NEVER mentioned anything to SUGGEST you “said that other local manufacturers were producing : lard, shortening, cooking oils and that they were competing with Roberts,” either.
Those items were mentioned in reference to “LOCALLY PRODUCED PRODUCTS.”
However, I re-read the contribution. My apologies…….. it was just a simple misunderstanding.
RE: “We have this bogey man condemnation of Massey while forgetting that BS and T opened the door for Massey.”
Since I was the only person, so far, to any reference to Massy, would you please explain what is meant by, “We have this bogey man condemnation of Massey?”
Sometimes it seems as though one has to ‘walk on eggshells’ when engaging you in discussion.
I did not mean you in relation to the bogey man comment about Massey and Sandals. I meant “ we” . I was trying to connect the broader point relating to how we have refused to be more proactive and innovative but when others come in we seem to have problems. Perhaps I should have been clearer.
@ Northern Observer
A careful reading of what you stated shows that we are actually saying the same thing.
I’ll give you an example to illustrate Mr. Skinner’s point about pricing and competition.
A Guyanese rum named ‘Diamond’ was imported and sold cheaper, giving Foursquare’s ESAF and Old Brigand ‘stiff competition.’
As you’re aware, some consumers are loyal to a product, while others are more price conscious.
David Seale responded by ‘resurrecting’ ‘Alleyne Arthur’ and selling it much cheaper than ‘Diamond.’
“ As you’re aware, some consumers are loyal to a product, while others are more price conscious.“
This is the point that we keep missing. You will recall that even the vendors outside primary schools engaged in competition and as you correctly stated children determined where they put their loyalty as consumers.
We have a fear of competition because the economy was built on a colonial retail foundation where the unfair distribution of wealth guaranteed multiple monopolies or monopolistic operations.
Every Saturday hundreds of puddin’ and souse vendors engage in competition but many have loyal customers. Competition protects the customer, service becomes the watchword and wealth is more equitably distributed. Employment tends to increase in such a dynamic environment. And business models must adopt or die.
Your point about the rum is excellent in this regard.
“It may make more sense to catch it if you live in a community with doctors who know how to treat if early. That way you get the real antibodies.”
1) See Donna’s comment
2) See Sargeant’s post
TIEF NOT, WANT NOT..
If nothing else, Covid has exposed these political FRAUDS across the region for who and what they are, no cushion for the Black populations they beg for votes…no preparations for calamities, NOTHING….
John A is a threat to our Supreme Leader. He is interfering with her artfully orchestrated plan to distract the native masses through the Republic Wizardry.
Therefore, as Supreme Court Jester, I recommend that John A be promoted to Ambassador to New York, Beijing, Brussels or Geneva. So that in future he will have to keep his mouth shut like Mr Cumberbatch. Mr Cumberbatch also used to disturb public order by intelligent contributions on BU and therefore had to be silenced.
Since I have something to do in Bridgetown, tomorrow anyway, I will immediately present this to the HQ of our Supreme Leader´s movement.