Archive for the ‘Potlicks’ Category

Answer the Damn Question Already

Posted: December 15, 2010 in Potlicks

Drew is looking for Answers!

If you’re a Facebook junkie, and who isn’t, you probably would have noticed in certain threads, the appearance of Ministers of the government from time to time waxing poetic about everything from sunset strolls on the beach to the musings of their well fed, well secured children. Nice. But you have to wonder when you see these quotes showing up on a daily basis, half of which are about being hated, if the author is prepping us for the inevitable.

Zhivargo Laing has recently been testing out his philosophical, biographical nuggets on Facebook lately. So much so that I actually joked with him that he seems to be readying himself for life after politics given the immense public distrust and distaste for his party. Mr. Laing is the chairman of the privatization committee for BTC that has just given the crown jewel of government corporations over to Cable & Wireless, a company that Ingraham said years ago was not even worthy of being at the table when privatization began. My good friend and a writer on this blog, Mario Bannister, posted a comment on an email thread on Facebook that included a lot of people, including Mr. Laing. Mr. Laing got into it over being called a Jackass by Patrick Fritz which was seconded by George Knowles, another Tamrinswitch blogger. However, to be fair to George, he was referencing the name and not necessarily calling Laing a Jackass. Well at least not then. He may be now.

I won’t bother trying to do the blow by blow of it all. Thats what screen shots are for. Please read them all and see clearly just what we’re dealing with in the FNM and its future leaders. Mr. Laing refused to answer questions and was instead, stuck on being called a Jackass. He went off on tangents that were really unbecoming, sometimes confusing and totally irrelevant to the conversation. He wrote me an aside, which, after the FNM’s cowardly refusal to table the BTC Memo and shut down the House of Assembly for the rest of the year, forced me to share it here.

What you do in the dark will always make it into the light. Don’t say you didn’t have ample opportunity to answer Mr. Laing. I apologize at the outset for the length of this blog but please read it all and enjoy the back and forth between ordinary citizens and the Minister of State for Finance and MP for Marco City.

In my post, I asked him the question everybody wants answered.

Clearly, Mr. Laing has little intention of answering. Being called a Jackass was more important to him.

Laing went for the low blow by alluding to the rape allegations made against PLP Chairman Bradley Roberts that were subsequently recanted in full by the lady. No charges were filed because the complaint was withdrawn in full yet, the FNM persists. Elcott Coleby countered with a reference to a well documented situation involving a senior FNM official who allegedly impregnated an underaged girl (statutory rape) and arranged for her to be spirited out of the country to avoid prosecution. Coleby went further by suggesting the police may  have been aware but because of the political firestorm that the story created, delayed investigating the matter, thus giving the senior FNM politician time to hide his dirty secret.

Laing avoided the questions again and instead, focused on a petty row with Forrester Carroll, who wasn't even speaking to him.

 

Finally, Laing addresses the question but he tried to do so with a flimsy explanation that said nothing much. Nobody bought his whistle blower promise either. In fact, most people believe that not only is he and his colleagues aware of the million dollar finders fee but perhaps even facilitated it but thats for another time.

I had been expecting a better more detailed answer but just like Papa, Laing assumed one sentence was enough. It wasn't because he didn't really answer the questions

Being called a Jackass to start the thread was the perfect escape for Laing, who used it to end his participation in the thread without giving a reasonable answer.

Then something strange happened. Laing wrote me a direct note from the thread. Usually when I see these from FNMs, it means they are going to admit privately what they refuse to acknowledge publicly or beg off of the hot seat. In Laing’s case, he may have intended to do both. You be the judge.

Sorry Laing but I had to share these conversations because what you guys have done and are doing is shameful. Cheers.

 

The combined workers unions, led by the National Congress of Trade Unions shut down Bay Street today with a massive protest that included almost 400 workers from mainly BTC and a few other areas. The unrest over the FNM’s decision to give away BTC to Cable & Wireless has all but guaranteed the FNM that their time in power is drawing to a swift close. Their refusal to debate the matter in the House of Assembly and the swift shutting down of Parliament for the year all but sealed the deal.

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Tommy! Will you Ever Learn?

Posted: July 23, 2010 in Potlicks

By Dawn Demeritte

I do think it’s about that time to break my silence about Minister Tommy Turnquest.  I’ve been biting my tongue for sometime as I didn’t want to continuously beat him down. But my hands are tied; I can’t be quiet anymore as he continues to live in his dream world of marshmallows and rainbows.

Take a break from the dream world...visit us in the real world

Minister Turnquest you are simply clueless; if it isn’t issuing foolish statements to the press, it’s being extremely quiet during a rapid increase in crime. Don’t get me wrong, crime is not the only thing that you’re clueless about. You’re also clueless about keeping up with your critics and realizing that every time you open your mouth, you become worse than Charles Maynard’s weekly rants in the House of Assembly.

By now Minister Turnquest, you should have an advisor-one that correctly advises you on what to say and when to say it. Simply because your track record in public statements is awful to say the least. So awful that you’ve been particularly silent all year, even though you and your ministry are the biggest downfall of this Free National Movement government.

I don’t know what’s worse, the fact that sometime ago you claimed that you knew where all the criminals were or the fact that now you’re blaming the crime on the drug trade. If our situation wasn’t as deplorable as it is, I would have a hearty laugh Min. Turnquest. However, that is not the case because you are attempting to take the light off your government by giving the public lousy excuses. Drugs have always been in our society and there has always been crime because of drugs but the number one cause of crime currently is the horrible governance of your government.

Give in to the pressure & resign..you'll feel more than 50 pounds lighter

Allow me to explain, if better decisions had been made fewer people would be on the streets looking for a quick buck. Fewer people would be attempting to take the easy way out; if everything hadn’t been raised at the same time to save your “asses” more people would know where their next meal is coming from. Because of the conditions that you forced upon people and the state we’re currently in, people have to survive; even if it means crime. More people are robbing one another for money or ways to survive then they’re fighting over turf.

Outside of stealing to survive, murders are occurring because people don’t know how to resolve their issues without weapons. Everyone is angry for whatever reason and your unintelligent comments about our crime problems do not help the situation at all, in fact it makes people angrier!

Instead of giving us phony ideas about the source of our problems, why don’t you and your failing police force solve it? To make matters worse, after the most far-fetched thought you’ve had all year, you then have no statistics or facts to prove it. That’s not how it works; if you draw a conclusion you should have facts to back it up. Are you still a Minister? Or are you just passing time until the next General Elections?

If you are still the Minister in charge of National Security, because your comments clearly show that you’re still vacationing in South Africa, please explain to us, where did you draw this conclusion from? Did Lucky the Leprechaun come and tell you this in a dream? I wish he would visit you and demand you resign because you’ve become an “Epic Fail” and you should be ashamed of yourself.

I’m going to draw a little conclusion of my own. Min Turnquest, I believe you are out of your league. I think its time for you to resign, as you don’t have any new ideas and you’re running out of silliness to feed us.  If you take a look at your political history particularly since 2007, you will see you’ve been laughed at and ridiculed for your ridiculous statements about crime. They always prove that either you live in a separate Bahamas from all of us or that politics is not the field for you. The good thing about both thoughts is they both provide you an avenue out. So please, I’m begging you save the FNM any further embarrassment and resign; it’s not hard at all- ask Sidney Collie. Do it for your country-it’s the least you can do.

On Friday January 29th, the candidates for the Elizabeth Bye Election made it official. The showdown was on. While papers were being filed inside for the big fight on February 16th, it appears another fight was going on outside.

No, not between PLPs and FNMs with the BDM and NDP too small or insignificant to matter, but instead between the current FNM Chairman, Carl Bethel and his predecessor, Rev. Dr. Senator Johnlee Ferguson. Now I will say that I caught a bit of the discussion of the fight amongst some FNMs from a distance with my camera’s boom mic (no, I didn’t record it) so there may be some missing context to the exchange but clearly, the gist of the tiff came from the fact that the FNM were once again outnumbered and out performed by the PLP. It was almost like Junkanoo. Here is a paraphrased play by play as told to me by someone who was in a better position to hear:

Four cars and a boom box truck. That was the FNM's "motorcade" No wonder Johnlee was pissed.

Carl (on seeing the PLP crowd off in the distance): “Wow”

Johnlee: My God Carl, look at them! As if last night wasn’t bad enough (their rally that didn’t pack the usual crowds) but now you couldn’t even get a decent crowd out here man. What the hell you doing?

Carl (Turning RED): Excuse me? You can’t be talking to me. Are you talking to me about being ineffective?

Johnlee (Voice raised and now two inches from Carl’s face): I’m talking to the FNM Chairman who couldn’t outnumber the PLP. Look at that man. Look at that. What a disgrace.

Seeing the potential for a bigger scene, Zhivargo Laing stepped in between Carl and Johnlee and separated them, saying:

Laing: Come on gentlemen, you both know this is not the time and place for this. This is not the time nor place.

Dr. Death: "Oh crap, what did I get myself into now?"

Now for me, the priceless shot of the day was the look of abject terror and fear on the face of Dr. Death when he saw the PLP crowd streaming through the gates. Ryan Pinder walked over to shake his hand. I was half hoping that Ryan may have whispered in the good Dr.’s ear “thank you” but I know Ryan is too classy to go there.

Now we can pontificate from the exchange between Carl and Johnlee, which may not be a 100% accurate depiction of what happened, that all is not well with the FNM’s chairmen, past and present. I understand that the much hyped FNM rally on Prince Charles was a shadow of the PLP rally held the night before and that despite flying in a pile of FNMs from Grand Bahama and Andros and giving them all $150  for their troubles, that the crowd was still not what the party had expected. I doubt seriously that none of this would have mattered had the PLP not had the showing it had on Wednesday night and then again on Friday morning. What this says is that the PLP is building momentum in a sustained way and that the message of the PLP is starting to resonate in a big way.

Ah Lord, poor thing. Theo Farquharson flew all the way to Nassau to witness this

Now I’ve been made to understand from someone on that side that the motivation for Mr. Ferguson’s outburst is that in the likely event that Dr. Sands loses, the FNM will still find a way to get him into Cabinet as the new Minister of Health. Dr. Minnis is likely to go to Works as the word is Neko Grant or Ken Russell will step down as Minister as a prelude to retirement from politics, or that Dion Foulkes may be fired over a brewing controversy in his backyard. If that is the case, and there are limits to how many Senators can sit in Cabinet, Mr. Ingraham as leader of the FNM will put vaseline on the broom handle one more time for Johnlee Ferguson and remove him from the Senate to make way for Sands.

What a defeated looking bunch. I don't blame them though, the PLP had a massive crowd and they had...nada

Talk about self preservation. I’ve heard this story from friends on the scene in both the PLP and FNM and its very plausible. Of course, none of the parties involved will ever admit to it, just as the took the medicine at the FNM convention. And did I say the PLP crowds were massive?

Now I wouldn’t sit here and say that the entire crowd on Wednesday or Friday were made up entirely of residents of Elizabeth but a fair share of those people were in fact voters in the area. This is causing an even bigger alarm for the FNM as it is now an undeniable fact that the country is buying into what the PLP is saying and may be inclined to vote that way. Only time will tell.

Drew Says "Free Speech" ain't Free No More

Hubert Alexander Ingraham is scared. He is scared and losing his grip on power in such a definitive way that he has morphed into a full blown El Capitan style dictator right before our eyes. The admonishment “I am Hubert Alexander Ingraham. I am Prime Minister of The Bahamas” seems to have been a wider warning for all of us that if we had any pretense of free will or free speech in this land, you better forget it.

The little dictator showed his hand once again with the orchestrated “retirement” of Freeport News Editor Oswald Brown. Brown wrote an article last week that was highly critical of the government and in particular, Mr. Ingraham’s ill conceived decisions and ideas, particularly his blind coziness with the Chinese to the detriment of our relations with the Americans. When Perry Christie announced it at Ryan Pinder’s command centre opening, it was clear that Ozzie’s musing had upset “Caesar” Ingraham so much that he had the bosses at the Guardian hand Brown his “retirement” package early.

Oswald Brown, the door is open for you at TS. No pay, but you can exact all the payback you want

Oswald Brown had no intentions of leaving the Guardian’s Freeport News operation any time soon. From all reports and what we know of the man, he loved it there, despite the slights that seemed to mount following his split with other senior FNMs. But most people will note that Brown was a big critic of the PLP, in particular Perry Christie and then, all was good as far as Caesar was concerned. But when the bumbling, hard hearted and outright stupidity of the FNM government became too obvious to ignore, Brown’s focus went squarely to it and suddenly, he became Ingraham enemy number 1.

If you think this is the first time Ingraham has called Tony Ferguson asking for someone’s head, think again. In November, Hubert did it to Erin “3-piece” Ferguson, the prodigal PLP baby pundit who often guest hosted the “Jeffry” show on Star 106.5 FM.

Now you know I’m no fan of 3-Piece but what they did to him was wrong wrong wrong. Ferguson made the mistake of assuming that the talk of the FNM “freeing the airwaves” was true and dared to point out the fakery and fraud that was the FNM Convention and was immediately ran from the Convention. I don’t know if there was ever a time when a pundit from a private radio station was ever chased out of a national party convention for expressing his views on how the convention was being presented to the public but thats Caesar for you.

Ferguson then went on the show a week later as he and Juan McCartney were recapping the conventions and dared to speak openly about his treatment and what the Bahamian people should take from that experience. The words were still in the air when Tony Ferguson’s phone started ringing and Erin’s head was handed to him as he was booted out the door. Caesar strikes again.

Kendeno is ready for his close up

These are just the few episodes we know of, but be assured, the affect of these kinds of emasculations are far reaching. You already have a press that is reticent to do its damn job and then you take out Ozzie for writing one critical editorial! What does that say for the Paige Fergusons, Brent Deans, Kendeno Knowles and others out there who are already perceived as partisan in their observations?

It says “cross that line and your ass is next.” At some point, our young journalists will have to learn to not be so in love with seeing their faces on TV or hearing their names on the radio or in newsprint and just focus on the job they were supposedly trained to do. My journalism mentor, Dr. Don Ericcson, a man who worked at CBS with Walter freaking Kronkite, on Sixty Minutes in the late 60s and 70s and for kicks, joined ABC’s Wild World of Sports just so he could have sports journalist on is resume always said this to me: “the minute you start noticing yourself while presenting the news, you’ve moved from reporter to actor and an actor is just a notch above a child molester in my eyes.” A bit extreme but Dr. Ericcson’s point was that a journalist’s first and only obligation is to getting the story and getting it right. Everything else is a perversion.

Caesar knows this and uses this to his advantage because I’m willing to bet that there is not one young person in the media today who will write anything remotely critical while this man is in charge. So I ask you to consider the question: Are you living in a democracy or a dictatorship?

Here Comes the Judge

Posted: January 6, 2010 in General Delivery, Potlicks

By Mario Bannister

For Malcolm Adderley this is an historic day.  For the constituents of Elizabeth this is a disappointing day.  For the PLP this is a relieved day.  For the FNM this is a scary day.  Malcolm is in the middle of it all.

Malcolm Adderley was first elected to Parliament on May 2, 2002.  Malcolm won by a majority of 1135 votes.  Upon election, rumour has it that Malcolm was offered Speaker of the House of Assembly which he turned down.  Rumour has it that he wanted to be Attorney General. This was not to be.

The leader of the political party that wins the general elections has to make some very difficult choices.  He has to form a government from among those new Members of Parliament. It means then, that he has to use his best judgement and he usually takes advice from his closest advisors.  They must evaluate the candidate’s strengths and weakness and determine where best that person is suited to serve on the team and in which capacity.

There should only be so many persons serving in a Cabinet. It is not that case that each elected Member of

Malcolm Adderley

Parliament becomes a Cabinet Minister. Members of Parliament usually have to wait until “their time”. Grown men are not supposed to cry and so, there should be no sour grapes on the line.  This was not the case for Malcolm Adderley.

The sour grapes of Malcolm Adderley are evident not only in his first term but also for the second term up to this point.  Certainly, the constituents of Elizabeth do not deserve the poor representation that they received just because Malcolm Adderley did not get to be the Attorney General.

No cabinet post, just like no Parliamentary seat comes with any name on it.  Little Malcolm just would not grow up and mature into the world of politics.  Malcolm Adderley remains a misfit who was given a second chance to get it right. The constituents of Elizabeth are disappointed and rightfully, for Mr Adderley to have provided such poor representation.

The PLP is relieved.  And the commitment is that there will be a credible candidate with roots in the PLP to now have the opportunity to represent Elizabeth.

Today is a scary day for the FNM.  They know they have the funds to contest the election. But they are also aware that the early word on the street is “take the money and vote PLP!”  That being the case, they have convinced Dr. Duane Sands, one of the most prominent cardiologists in the Bahamas to make a run for it.

It is indeed sad that Dr. Sands is leaving his medical practice, which has benefited so many Bahamians, to sit in Parliament with a leader like Hubert Ingraham, who will not take any advice from him. The point is, not only is Mr Ingraham prostituting the judiciary, he is at the same time denying the Bahamian public the services of one of the best in the medical field when we need  the service and experience of ably qualified specialized medical practitioners in the Bahamas. This is sad.  It is scary and more will be said about this later.

Malcolm Adderley is in the middle of all of this. It is somewhat clear that his selfish wish is to now become a Judge on the Supreme Court of the Bahamas.  Since he aspires to hold that high office, he should caution himself to be mindful and very careful of what he says today, because, he would not want to bring additional questions and suspicion surrounding his motives on wanting to be Attorney General and now a Judge.  Hmmmm.  Malcolm, we’re watching you and listening closely to your comments today.  Any false move will taint your service stint, credibility and effectiveness as a Judge.

By Joette Penn

For a while now the PLP Member of Parliament of Elizabeth Malcolm Adderley has been somewhat of a conundrum.  Well now rumor has it that Mr. Adderley may be accepting an appointment to the bench from Rt. Hon Hubert Ingraham and vacating his seat.  This move would create the need for a bye election.  As we would all recall Mr. Adderley accepted the invitation of Mr. Ingraham to become the Chairman of the Gaming Board a couple of years ago.  He was one of the few, if not the only PLP to keep or obtain a position under the Ingraham administration.  Well you may count Kenyatta Gibson but he changed sides before he got his position.  So this all makes me wonder what makes Malcolm Adderley so special to the Prime Minister that he thought to keep him around. HMMM…. Interesting.

PLP Member of Parliament for Elizabeth Malcolm Adderley

Now while Mr. Adderley did win his seat in Parliament as a member of the Progressive Liberal Party it would seem that he has been only half way loyal to that party for ages now.  Although I am not one to blindly follow party lines myself but Mr. Adderley’s behavior has been a bit much.  Well it seems that it is decision time for Mr. Adderley.  We will all know soon enough if the rumors are true or not.

Now here is my humble, uninformed guess.  Keep in mind I am no politician.  If Mr. Ingraham gives Mr. Adderley a seat on the bench and a bye election is called.  That could be Mr. Ingraham’s way of testing the political waters.  As we all know things are not going very well for this particular Ingraham administration and this time they cannot hide their inadequacies.  In previous administrations Mr. Ingraham was able to use his forcefulness, ruthlessness and his excellent ability to relate to the majority of the Bahamian people to hide his shortfalls as a leader.  Let’s not forget the clever sound bites that he comes up with. But as we all may have learned a recession and out of control crime is a great skirt raiser.  It will separate the capable from the clueless in a New York minute.

Now if the FNM were to win a bye election Mr. Ingraham could use that momentum to call a snap election.  If the PLP wins a bye election (fingers crossed) then Mr. Ingraham will have to go back to the drawing board and pull a rabbit out of his hat in time for 2012.  It would become incumbent on the PLP to keep the momentum of any win they may get going.  If the PLP wins the count in the house of assembly would remain as is.  If the FNM wins they would expand their majority by one.  Keep in mind though that we are talking about Hubert Ingraham here and only he knows when the next general elections will be called.

However the cookie crumbles. Get your pompoms and your paraphernalia ready.  Go down by Errol dem on Farrington Road and get yourself registered.  Just make sure you don’t run into Keith or Tricks. It looks like it may be GO  TIME.

They sending who? The man don't have one decent photo on the net and this who they sending? Oh yeah, forgot the money truck bringing him.

The PLP has to make sure that the errors, personalities and failed strategies of the last elections are not pulled out the bag again and I’m kind of feeling like they have learnt that lesson. Let’s hope so. Of course, having Ryan Pinder as a potential candidate with the political pedigree that Ryan has doesn’t hurt, especially when you see who the FNM is sending. Our guess is they will be sending the money truck right behind their candidate to pull this one out.

That is if the rumors are true, of course.

By Dawn Demeritte

Many of you may think by now I have a bit of an obsession with Minister Tommy Turnquest; however this is not the case.  I am always astonished by everything that comes out of his mouth. I know you’re trying your best Min.Turnquest and it seems that we the Bahamian people always want more but National Security is a very important ministry and it always seems as if you’re making a joke out of it or taking matters too lightly.

Yesterday in an exclusive report published by the Tribune, Mr. Turnquest states that we might believe that there is a rampage of innocent people losing their lives but this is not the case. He further states that although the murder rate is 78 that “28 have been as the result of arguments, conflicts or retaliation, 9 have been as the result of domestic violence and 14 of the total have been drug related.” I think you’re missing a category or maybe your memory doesn’t stretch that far back, but what about the murders that are robbery related do they not deserve to be counted for?

Turnquest said they don't withhold crime statistics. He should tell that to the outgoing COP.

Not to be the bearer of bad news but unless the press left out some figures, you’re a bit short because I got 51, so Min. Turnquest if you may-please explain to me what was the cause of the other 27 murders? Also, I’m a bit confused because I thought as long as you lost your life regardless to how you lost your life it is regarded as an innocent person who lost their life? Are you saying that people involved in domestic violence or drug related murders deserve to lose their lives? Oh No Min. Turnquest that’s not how it works.

It's a good thing you're not the Minister of Education!

It was a good interview however; I applaud you for going over your notes before the interview, but what about justice? The police aren’t in person’s bedrooms but are they not a part of the justice system as well? Do you arrest people for show just so family members can stop harassing you- only to let them out on bail again? I know you must think that your exclusive interview will silence people for the time being but this makes me question your competence and the justice system once again. But I forgot the justice system is politicized so of course nothing gets done there.

I must also say my heart skipped a beat when I read that “the key to making an impact on this plague is to have reasonable policies and programmes in place to deal with it.” Wow, you’re finally catching up with the rest of the Bahamas. But the question now is- do you have the ideas to ensure this happens? Do you have the creativity or the concern to ensure that these policies and programmes are functional? All the policies and programmes that your government can think of will not solve this problem for this year. Hopefully you get a head start for next year, because it now seems as if your solution for crime is finally coming to light. When you create policies and programmes, every step must be planned and this includes justice, jail time or community service. Something that assures us as the public that justice is being served. Just a bit of advice to get you started because you my dear minister cannot take a break, your every move is being monitored; now what will you do?

Other than that, I can say thanks for attempting to make me feel safe as I lock everything that has a lock around me. When I’m going out next time and I’m looking over my shoulder to make sure no one is following me I’ll remember that it’s Christmas and there will be an increased police presence “in hot spots or downtown areas.” Not to mention, “zero tolerance” is still in place.

I guess Tommy finally found the FNM promises on Crime. Should be implemented by 2011, if we're lucky!