Monthly Archive for February, 2007

New politics needed in TnT

By Dr. Kwame Nantambu
February 28, 2007

Red HouseNow that election air politics is ubiquitous’ it seems apropos to postulate that there is need for a new genre of politics in TnT. The fact of the matter is that the time has come for the emergence of maturity in the country’s political ethos.

This writer is suggesting that the time has come for the inauguration of Public Policy Performance Politics (PPPP) in TnT. In other words, the time is now to move completely away from ethnicity to productivity in the political/electoral arena. The time has come for We, the People, to ask the following question: Are we better off as a result of our constituency’s representation over the past five years?
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At Brazil Carnival, Racial Unity a Mask

At Brazil Carnival, Racial Unity a Mask
“Nowhere is the vision of Brazil as a racial democracy more apparent than during carnival, when millions of people black and white, rich and poor, press up against one another in an annual party that began Friday in most of the country.

But the celebrations mask tensions that simmer beneath the surface in a nation where most of the poor are descended from Africans and most of the rich mostly from Europeans.”
Full Article : phillyburbs.com

Brazil’s False Image of Racial Harmony Has Accomplice: the Black Population
“For instance, in a study by Camino, da Silva, Machado and Pereira (1), Brazilians were asked their own opinions and what they thought the opinion of other Brazilians would be regarding “natural” attributes correlating to whites and blacks. In a classic example of recognizing prejudice but not seeing prejudice in themselves, Brazilians believed that Brazilian society itself associated negative attributes to blacks and positive attributes to whites.
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A Carnival we can be proud of

By Raffique Shah
February 25, 2007

Carnival at TriniSoca.comIt was not the “best Carnival ever”, as some Government ministers and security officials boasted last week. If they meant that it was the best in recent years, with that I agree. There were more than a handful of good calypsoes. There were a few mas bands that were colourful, that blended the skills of “wirebenders” and creativity of costume designers, bringing back some of the splendour of yesteryear. There was pan music supreme, so much so that I felt sorry for the many good bands that were not showcased at the finals. And for once I agree with Police Commissioner Trevor Paul, it was relatively crime-free.
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Shame and Scandal in CEPEP

By Stephen Kangal
February 24, 2007

TT MoneyAfter disbursing a feeding frenzy/political patronage to the tune of $1.6 billion in CEPEP, the PNM Administration has nothing to show except some painted stones from which even the cheap paint has been washed away. The UNC Administration after spending an identical $1.6 billion has an airport to show, large deposits secretly stashed away in foreign bank accounts and supporters facing the courts for alleged theft.
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Crime will not stop the Carnival

By Raffique Shah
February 18, 2007

CarnivalIt’s the columnist’s perennial dilemma: what topic to address on a Carnival Sunday? Who reads newspapers around this time anyway? Pan “peongs” in their thousands will be bleary-eyed and either celebrating the sound of steel or fuming over the judges’ decisions from last night’s Panorama finals. Many more who will have attended Friday night’s cacophony, “Soca Monarch”, rendered tone-deaf by noise boxes supreme, are too dazed to do anything but seek out more noise. And the few who have remained sober until now will be psychologically adjusting their systems for the stupor that will start by nightfall.
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The Valley of Hopelessness

By Stephen Kangal
February 19, 2007

Red HouseThe national community must show its outrage on the post -Cabinet uttering made by Minister Valley on the crime situation and widely reported in the media on Thursday 24 January. After the Manning Administration has led many citizens without any protection into the valley of the shadow of untimely and premature death and rampant crime that also potentially threatens each one of us, Minister Valley repeats the insensitivity of his Prime Minister and proceeds to justify our spiraling crime pandemic as being part of a “global event”. It has nothing to do, according to him, with the total failure of his Government to guarantee our life, liberty, the security of the person and our hard-earned property. For him crime, like inflation, is a feature of the global village of which T&T is a part. It is externally determined.
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Correcting ‘racial tension’ in TnT

By Dr. Kwame Nantambu
February 14, 2007

AfricansWithin recent times Chairman of the United National Congress, Basdeo Panday, has not only blamed Prime Minister Patrick Manning for “racial tension entrenching itself in T&T” but Congress of the People Leader, Winston Dookeran, has also accused Manning of “provoking racial tensions” and erecting electoral “vote banks”.
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Already under a state of siege

By Raffique Shah
February 11, 2007

Patrick ManningPrime Minister Patrick Manning must learn to choose his words carefully. He is, after all, the CEO of Trinidad and Tobago, which signals that every word he utters is closely monitored by my colleagues in the media and by the public. He must recall how private statements by US President George Bush resulted in public guffaws when it turned out that mikes close to the “Chief” were switched on, and his ill-informed quips proved to be material-made-for-comics. But one does not expect better from Dubaya who comes across as imbecilic as a failed Junior Secondary school non-graduate: the man expressed shock at the size of Russia! What if he had traversed the expanse of the fallen Soviet Union?
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Wanted: Plurality in the Police Service

By Stephen Kangal
February 11, 2007

IndiansThe arbitrary and selective conduct of the police in responding to recent popular protest movements raises fundamental questions on this response and its linkage with the composition of the protective services in plural Trinidad and Tobago. In cosmopolitan societies but more so in a multicultural but in an ethnically polarised T&T our cosmopolitan people must be provided with every basis to identify with the police. The police must never be perceived or be used as a mechanism for political repression or constitute a potential threat to any democratically elected government or act as an arm of the Executive as it is being perceived today in T&T.
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How European Writers Created the Racist image of Africa

by Milton Allimadi

American and British media and literature contributed mightily to the defamation of Africans – an historical crime that has conditioned Western audiences to the deaths of millions. Beginning with the Greek, Herodotus, and continuing in the pages of The New York Times, racist propaganda depicted the continent as home to misshapen monsters, savage cannibals, soul-less brutes, and sub-humans in need of white discipline.
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