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May 07, 2014

Comments

Ramone Forbes

I don't boast any major understanding of politics or business, but I can tell that we are doing things wrong. And it's not that we have just started doing things wrong, but that we have finally run out of slack rope to mask it.

My mind goes on the double dipping of BEC. A well known infraction that was allowed to go on for many years and which is only being recognized and stopped now after we are at a crisis level in this country.

I also think about the way politics is shown in the public eye. In my honest opinion we haven't seen a fully competent governing body for a very long time. Our politicians spend more time arguing over who is doing better than the next and pointing out each other's faults than they do trying to address the needs of our country. Many times I just shake my head at the ludicrous name calling and badgering that goes on in the various media forms. And it has become such a norm that even our reporters and journalists don't point out the level of ridiculousness our politicians sink to.

Another point of concern is the legalization of web shops. On one hand it sends a message that if do you something illegal long enough you will be rewarded. And on the other hand we know it's not going anywhere so it should have been taxed a long time ago. And in light of the need of revenue a referendum should have never been drawn out that wasted the people's money and still was made to no effect. It was simply an expensive opinion poll.

You article opined out many other great points which I simply can not dive into at this moment. But if we are going to experience change we need to demand it. We have so long settled for the level of inefficiency and lack of transparency for too long. We have remained loyal to government parties out of blind emotive and family ties too long as well. In order for is to become a nation that can take on the changing economic climate and diverse needs we need to step out of comfort zone and push our leaders to be more or at least give another party a chance. Why must we continuously limp back and forth between two parties who are almost the same anyway?

Sherrill Callender

Right on R. Forbes. Well said! If I may add to your "legalization of web shops" comment: In my view, once again, special interests carried the day. To me, a Bahamian lottery, if there were proper oversight, would be one of the most immediate and ongoing solutions for revenue.

The money that presently leaves the Bahamas to overseas lotteries is massive. In Florida alone, billions of dollars are collected by its lottery and funneled mainly into education. But no, here, special interests had to be protected! How much of these profits will actually benefit the general public/economy is anyone's guess...I suspect; more like the rich will get richer and the poor, poorer.

The big carrot being dangled now is O-I-L. This is one slippery slope and it appears that this government is prepared to go there without due EIA studies etc. Already devastating to whales, porpoises and other marine mammals, sonar exploration took place...where were the town hall meetings and notices that this was happening? Do we think there will be serious public debate about actual drilling and the negative consequences to our delicate eco systems? I won't hold my breath.

As the earth warms and the seas rise from the burning of fossil fuels, and with the Bahamas being at particular risk, our politicians are willing to contribute to global warming by allowing the very thing that causes it; to come from our shallow seas. One spill and POOF, there goes our number one industry...tourism.

Yes, I know we are desperate for revenues but to naively grasp at enticing straws without understand fully the consequences and ignore obvious solutions because they may cost votes, is political idiocy at its worst.

Ramone Forbes

Very true, S. Callender. I think the at the heart of the matter we as Bahamians need to demand more from our leaders. Too easily we shrug off things that other countries wouldn't so quickly forget.

We allowed our government to waste money on a opinion poll that resulted in absolutely nothing. A outright waste of money that set a precedent that the government can at any time override the voice of the people if its in their best interests.

Then we allow them to brainwash our youth into accepting foolish political norms with rallies. These events, which should be forum for open dialogue about the needs of the country, are nothing more than alcohol infused, loud music parties. I look at the debates that are carried out in the USA and compare them to ours. Comparatively, we are in the stone age. But we have bought into this silly notion that these events are what the country needs and it is only another money wasting event.

And oil should never even be a option for us since we are so heavily reliant on our marine life and tourism. It is not a question of if there will be a spill, but when there will be one. It will only be a matter of time.

And lastly, the government always wants to talk about how to increase revenue, but fails to realize that we also need to decrease spending. Very little talk is done in regards to identifying ways to cut back on budgets.

If we don't wake up one day this country will flip completely upside down.

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