Truth and Consequences

By Dr. Selwyn R. Cudjoe
June 07, 2011

Dr. Selwyn R. CudjoeWhen I asked whether our honorable Prime Minister has a drinking problem I did not mean to be uncharitable or to be “sexist.” Given Dominique Strauss-Kahn’s difficulties I thought it responsible to raise an issue that has gained a life of its own. I still contend that the enabling role Strauss-Kahn’s friends played in supporting his illness may be analogous to the deafening public silence that surrounds the PM’s purported drinking problem. Many of Strauss-Khan’s close friends knew he had a problem. None was bold enough to speak about it publicly.

My mother used to say no one ever goes to a parlor to buy a pound of cancer or a half-pound of diabetes. People get sick for many reasons. For some, it has to do with inherited genetic traits. This is true for leaders of government as well as the ordinary person. However, it is important to find out the cause of one’s illness and treat it in an expeditious manner. Openness and honesty are always the best policies in these matters. Given the truth, the public will understand.

But it takes courage to do this. I speak from example.

Three years ago I was diagnosed with having prostate cancer. I wrote openly about it in the newspapers because I wanted others, particularly other black men, to be on guard about this killer disease. I even spoke about its side effects so that black men could be aware of the dangers that awaited them if they neglected to treat this condition.

I opted to take a prostatectomy (the removal of one’s prostate gland), to treat my disease. To bring this disease out of the darker places (no pun intended), I wrote a funny article called “The Thing” in which I explored two consequences of prostatectomy: the possibility of becoming impotent (the inability to have an erection) and/or incontinence (unable to hold one’s urine.) While I do not have a problem controlling my urine, I still have a problem with potency. It is difficult to get “the thing” up.

For black men who take pride in their potency and the efficiency of their laudatory male instrument (some men see their penises as weapons), the inability to get an erection can be a devastating blow to their manhood. Without their potency some men feel they should not even be alive. Admitting the truth helps one to come to grips with one’s condition and to seek treatment for one’s disease. It is not the end of one’s life.

In a way alcoholism is to East Indians what prostate cancer is to the African. East Indians are susceptible to alcoholism for several reasons. Although some East Indian women become victims of alcoholism it is mostly the men who are susceptive to this disease. This has a lot to do with their diets which, in many cases, lead to the prevalence of diabetes which, in the men, lead to impotence. Many East Indian men turn to the bottle because they are unable to face this condition.

Therefore it is not coincident that many of the contemporary Indian songs glorify rum. In response to a quarry from his prospective father-in-law Rikki Jai, this year’s Chutney Monarch, declared: “White Oak and Water/ Is all I have to offer.” In 2010 ” Ravi-B’s “Ah Drinka” won the Chutney Soca Monarch with a song that warned his girlfriend, “You can’t change me, no way./ Girl, you know I was a drinker.”

In an insightful article in the Trinidad Guardian, Lisa Allen-Agostini quotes Zaheer “Big Rich” Khan, a composer of several 2010 Chutney “rum” songs as saying “People pretending they don’t do these things. All the songs is about everyday life things. Let’s say I don’t do any rum songs. That is not going to decrease drinking and driving. It’s not going to save no lives.”

In their study “Variations in Alcohol-Metabolizing Enzymes in People of East Indian and African Descent from Trinidad and Tobago” Shelley Moore and her fellow researchers acknowledge that there is a difference in alcoholism rates between Africans and East Indians. They also discovered that “a variant in the gene encoding cytosolic ALDH1A was found to be associated with an increase in alcoholic dependence in Indo-Trinidadians.” In other words, there is a biological basis for the high level of alcoholism among East Indians.

The authors of the study concluded: “Ethnic studies investigating the prevalence of alcoholism in Trinidad and Tobago found that alcoholism prevalence is substantially higher among Indo-Trinidadians than among Afro-Trinidadians. For example, a recent assessment survey reported an alcohol problem rate of 47 percent among Indo-Trinidadians, compared with 33 percent among Afro-Trinidadians.”

There can be no shame on our Prime Minister if it turns out that she has a problem with alcohol. Neither should it prevent her from continuing to serve in her present office. However, if she has a drinking problem, it would be salutary to hers and the nation’s health if she said publicly, “I have a medical problem, it is one to which many of us are susceptible. I am attending to my problem. It would be nice if all of us can confront our fears and deal with any diseases which none of us purchased in a shop or in a parlor.”

In 2006, in a book In Sickness and in Power, David Owen, a former British Foreign Minister and physician, chronicled how sickness impacted upon the judgment of political leaders during the twentieth century. In an article, “Fit For Purpose?” (2009) he noted that “illnesses in heads of government is an important one…Indecision or wrong decisions, as a result of illness amongst heads of government over the last 100 years have been among the factors producing poor government. Yet there has been little research on the relationship between a leader’s ill health and poor decision making.”

Isn’t this something that we ought to take a look at?

26 thoughts on “Truth and Consequences”

  1. Dr. Cudjoe, your clever invitation to the Prime Minister to admit that she has a drinking problem, is fraught with danger for the nation, and for herself.
    Unlike Mr. Manning’s heart condition and other parts that deteriorate with time, addictions are seen as “the vice in your own head”. Its sort of like emotionally unstable behaviour.
    The late Franklin Delano Rooseveldt, US president, was wheelchair bound, but that never got out while he was campaigning, nor did JFK’s back problem. The US at the time was not ready to deal with a president who was less than physically whole, able to run for a touchdown, kick butt and lead the country into war.
    I am sure that TnT would feel the same. We never knew, publicly, that Dr. Eric Williams, father of our nation, was severely diabetic until he slipped into a coma over grief, they say, at his people turning against him in 1970. We were intolerant of Panday’s drinking(problem) and I myself had asked more than once if all of his brain cells were functioning. That was based on my being witness to his irrational behaviour more than once. Ms. Bissessar is the first female Prime Minister, and if she has such a problem, admitting to it would allow those within her party/coalition to begin sharpening ther knives to take her out. For many of them, I assume,it is irksome living under the leadership, even titular leadership, of a woman, a Hindu woman, one of their own. Although Indira Ghandi was a fine example of a Hindu waman leader, there were apparently those in her homeland who were determined to do her in. She and Benazir Bhutto met the same fate.
    When I am at home I hear stories of throwing up in the official car, as well as the infamous ones of falling down in New York drunk.

    Alcoholism is a disease of dependency and craving. You have a bad reaction because you should not be drinking in the first case.Your liver cannot tolerate it. Thousands of years of the vegan tradition does not create a belly for tolerating rum; and so, the drinker who is of that tradition may get intoxicated from one drink, while craving another and another.
    It is up to her staff, those two or three trusted aides who have her back, to see to it that all alcohol is kept out of her reach, if she has a problem, that is. At social functions, to appear to be “Drinking with they boys” she can bring her own bottle. Pour out the rum, rinse the bottle thoroughly and fill it with medium dark tea. Two teabags to a bottle of water. Then she can have her glass refilled from this special bottle, without passing out drunk, or being “pissing drunk”. She has publicly said “so ah does drink ah rum, so what” She has to stop this, if she is to have a clear head for the crisis at midnight or ‘fo’eday mornin’.
    To an alcoholic, a drink is poison.
    Now, while your lifestyle may have contributed to prostate cancer; there are those who believe that if you don’t use it, you lose it. There are others who blame a high cheese diet in our “Mac and cheese ” society; such a disease has achieved almost honorable status. Desmond Tutu was successfully treated for it, as well as a number of other notables.
    Once, castration was believed to help, but no man wanted that drastic treatment. Times have changed for most diseases and the way we percieve them. The remaining pariah diseases are alcohol and other drug additions, mental disease (insanity) and AIDS. These are pariahs, and to ask that MS. Bissessar admit to any of them, is to ask her to commit political suicide.
    Now, I did not vote for her, but I promised myself that I would pray for her, and for my country every day. I promised that I would wish her well, while criticizing her for the things where she needs to be pulled up short.
    I do not think she should admit to having a drinking problem. That would plunge the country into chaos. What I would suggest is that she review a decision made the previous day, before issuing it; and for her staff since she does not shop for herself anymore, put locks on the liquor cabinets and charge the head of her houshold with safeguarding the key, that is, IF she has a drinking problem.
    One can take no joy in such a sorry situation.

    1. A very sober, productive and useful analysis by Linda Edwards.Her motive for this response to Cudjoe’s article seems to be concern for the Nation and the PM, if in fact the PM has a drinking problem.
      On the other hand Cudjoe’s articles on this subject can be interpreted as politically mischievous, and insincere.
      The studies on alcoholism in T&T which he cites can be read on the internet and are not as conclusive as he pretends.However, any layman, using the powers of keen observation would come to the conclusion that Indians in T&T and elsewhere cannot “hold” their liquor. There is also a follow up study done by the same American organization which shows that certain Native tribes possess similar anti alcoholism genetic coding as Africans, but suffer from high percentages of alcoholism, due to environmental and economic factors. Most of these studies are inconclusive, as the research continues.
      If Cudjoe is truly concerned about the welfare of the PM, he should use his powerful influence to effect change privately, rather than create mischief by writing public articles characterised by generalizations based on inconclusive research. His attempt to highlight his own impotency is merely a mask to create political mischief and once again stimulate a debate on race.

  2. TMan hypocrisy continue to be the salient feature of your contributions on this board. You happily and voraciously grab on to and run with any rupor or allegation against Manning or any member of the PNM, including when they were Government. But like Dr Jour personality, you wax idiotically about Cudjoe privately effecting change vis a vis the alleged inbibing of the PM. Boy, you either have to be belabored with the attention span of a gold fish to disremember the positions you take, or the deceit that characterises your personality have become so damn acute that every iota of reason and commonsense has been removed from your ken.

    Your sense is of balance is so damn fractured, your brain need to be put in plaster of paris to ensure some sort of putting together. Cudjoes article is in standard with the majority of political pundits the world over. Why the hell should he be responsible for counselling the PM if indeed she is predisposed to inbibing. You freaking racist always feel that your excesses has to be handled differently to that of others. You exhibit a generational enculturation of supremacist prejudices and beliefs, but expect that people should ignore this and allow you to keep this sacred cow of ego enhancement.

    You are in no position to charge Cudjoe with being racist. There is an unbroken connection between you and that heritage that goes back for centuries. There is nothing of that nature connected to Cudjoe’s history, culture, or religious belief system.

    It is akin to David Duke pointing to an African American black activists and accusing him of racism. Ludicrous, laughable, but indicative of the absolutism with which generational learned and assimilated prejudice warps the thinking of people like you and Duke.

    Like I told you before, the days of you being able to indulge in these kinds of Freudian displacement strategies is over. The days of political correctness that allowed people like you pawn your heritage off on black people is over. Racism is a product of cultural and religious belief systems based on the fiction that people are born into inferior and superior racial and ethnic castes. Therefore those who are descended from these cultural and religious belief systems have a longer and more durable association with this ailment than those who have not. Physician, heal that blasted self before looking for the symptoms of your ailment in others.

    1. Unlike you Mr. Williams, I am a progressive, liberal, modernistic thinker who is not stuck on a single, obsessive theme.Your singular purpose in life is to echo the same antagonistic and seemingly irrational tirade against East Indians, repeating the same tired theories. Your hatred is littered all over this website. You seem to find a way, no matter what the topic, to pollute the discussions with racist venom. Your name-calling,generalizations and unsupported biased opinions are direct reflections on your stunted Intelligence Quotient.

    2. “An individual has not started living until he can rise above the narrow confines of his individualistic concerns to the broader concerns of all humanity”.
      Martin Luther King, Jr

      Mr. Williams
      You seem to be stuck on a single theme in all of your angry contributions.

  3. All of this speculation is sheer maliciousness on the part of those who cannot accept that we now have a Prime Minister who is not of their choosing.

    All this perceived “drunkeness” on the part of the P.M. is ill conceived and being given prominence in an attempt to “bring her down”, well, fellas I have news for you, I have been observing Mrs. Kamla Persad-Bissessar, and she is not one of your ordinary local females, in addition to being a strong-willed Trini, she has had the Jamaican and Barbadian conditioning which will serve her well when it comes to “stamina”.

    Of course, she is not infallible, but she is determined and gives the impression that she is respectful of the “spiritual persuasions” of all people in this Nation and so I say, if that is one of your ploys to do her in, then watch out, it might very well ricochet.


  4. What is a drinking problem?? One source states as follows, “Having a drinking problem is not defined by the type of alcohol you drink when you choose to drink, or even how much you drink. It’s the effects of your alcohol consumption that define a problem.”. Are you saying that the decisions made by the PM is affected by alcohol consumption?? Then we can challenge everyone’s decisions and blame it on one thing or the other including alcohol. i.e.drunk on . . . . .
    This seems to be a low blow by the author who has found one reason or other to castigate this PM for making every decision she has made. After your record on this PM who really would believe you.

  5. “deafening public silence that surrounds the PM’s purported drinking problem.”

    The history of Trinidad politics does not allow for inquiry into the personal lives of politicians. It stems from our British system of governance that values the work of an individual rather that the lifestyle of that individual. If the person is able to do the job effectively, then there is no need to try and dehumanize them by pointing out up until now is merely accusations. The devil accuses God all the time but do you see God being greatly bothered by his accusations?

    And so the accusations of an alcoholic Prime Minister must not be entertained in any forum because there are many who have skeletons in the closet. I am sure there are people who are connected to the former Prime Minister would want to know why he was taking so many female Minister on the jet to various destinations. Some even rejected his request choosing family over work. But this is were these type of inquiry leads to unnecessary examination of people lives.

    The PM is allowed to have a few drinks and maybe in the past it went an little far, but as far as anyone knows since assuming office as Prime Minister there has been no public display of drunkeness. The person who first identified the Prime Minister’s “weakeness” was indeed a man who have quite a few skeletons in his closet. A few that I know of and it would remain unsaid. Which is the right thing to do.

    As for the writer of this article he is a divorcee and so he might have some pent up hatred towards women in authority. I think the psychosis of inquiry is leading him down a pathway perhaps to examine his own relationship with women or lack thereof. Could it have been a “performance” problem that led to his former wife ending the pain? We will never know but he is entitle to as privacy as much as the Prime Minister is entitled to hers.

    By the way I think the writer would do a better job of asking why crime has gone down so much under the PP. After all crime is what got Patrick out, perhaps such inquiry will be instructive. Could be that the PM understands some things about criminality???

  6. “{Therefore it is not coincident that many of the contemporary Indian songs glorify rum. In response to a quarry from his prospective father-in-law Rikki Jai, this year’s Chutney Monarch, declared: “White Oak and Water/ Is all I have to offer.” In 2010 ” Ravi-B’s “Ah Drinka” won the Chutney Soca Monarch with a song that warned his girlfriend, “You can’t change me, no way./ Girl, you know I was a drinker.”

    I think the writer would have done a better job not alluding to the PM percieved problem and instead writing about alcoholism in general. Alcoholism is the “elephant” in the room. Drinking for instead is a common practice across the nations of the world. It is not exlcusive to Trinidad, across the world there are nations that found “joy” in alcohol. In Russia it was the tonic of the masses.

    The problem of alcoholism was common in North America. Alcohol was produce as “moonshine” and consumed illegally. Alcohol consumption increased to the point where men were drinking away the family income. Lonely women faced with the indiscipline male alcoholic through the church formed the “temperance movement”. Through the temperance movement alcohol for instance in Canada can only be sold in LCBO locations. It cannot be sold (except for wine around Christmas time) in groceries or department stores or corner stores (shop). This discourages easy access to the item. The sale of alcohol however, continues to increase every year. A few years ago I went to Mexico our guide was drunk from the get-go. My wife and I visited the Wal-Mart in Mexico and I was shock to see shelves upon shelves of alcohol upon entering the store. I could not believe my eyes. Almost every brand of the stuff from all over the world. The temptation to consume the stuff must be overpowering to the poor Mexicans.

    And so I would end by saying that alcohol has virtually destroyed so many lives. Myself I do not drink socially or otherwise for the past 30 years plus of my life on this planet. “Wine is a mocker, strong drink is raging and whosoever is decieved by it is a fool”. And I aint no fool…

    1. I agree with most of your comments. However, prohibition should not rear its ugly head again.
      Abuse of anything is bad and the world should be educating the peoples against abuse.

      1. If you look at alcohol as a substance and treat it as a substance that can be be abused, then you have to put in place measures to limit access. When you have open access then there is the temptation to abuse this substance.

  7. Now, we want to tell Dr. Cudjoe what he should write about? Where do we get the authority? This sort of “open secret” rumour about the topic has been going on since the campaign. He deals with it from the way any professional writer would deal with it.No one can dictate the choice of someone else’s topic.
    Truly guys, stop and think for a minute, who in TnT wants to read a general piece about allcohol excess in TnT? Aking this hit home. got people’s attention.

    1. Well, let the truth be told – he should have a preamble to his pieces attacking other people and the governments they lead.
      I hope his next piece would be about the opposition leader’s comment about women that goes something like this, if your wife say she love you she horning you. Write about the lack of respect for women in general of the opposition part or is it that he is talking about the PM this way because the PM is a woman.

  8. Unlike you Mr. Williams, I am a progressive, liberal, modernistic thinker who is not stuck on a single, obsessive theme.Your singular purpose in life is to echo the same antagonistic and seemingly irrational tirade against East Indians, repeating the same tired theories. Your hatred is littered all over this website. You seem to find a way, no matter what the topic, to pollute the discussions with racist venom. Your name-calling,generalizations and unsupported biased opinions are direct reflections on your stunted Intelligence Quotient.

    If self praise was acceptable recommendations to define people Hitler would be a saint. I called you devious and deceitful, and presented evidence for my conclusions. Anyone who has an iota of attention span can recall you calling Manning and many other PNM members racist. Somehow or the the other that cultural supremacist strain that inherently infect your thinking convinces you that you have rights that are denied to others.

    I believe in calling a Heyena a Heyena, and I have no threshold in terms of numbers. The determining factor is what I read from two two faced people like you.

    The idea that Cidjoe should pronounce on an issue involving the PM, but should keep his peace and counsel her is so damn ludicrous I can’t believe you have the unmitigated gall to put forth such nonsense. But what it shows is how fractured and biased your damn mind operates. When allegations surfaces against the PNM members you do not advise counselling, you grab on to a metaphorical rope while salivating over the opportunity to join the lynching party. So spare us the Jekyl and Hyde transformations, most people can see behind the mask now.

    1. Maybe you missed it the first time.

      “An individual has not started living until he can rise above the narrow confines of his individualistic concerns to the broader concerns of all humanity”.

      Martin Luther King, Jr

    2. The suggestion of counseling came from Cudjoe himself who suggested that if the PM has a problem with alcohol, she should retain her job and be counseled. I am assuming that Cudjoe understands that alcoholism is a medical problem, which evokes sympathy rather than condemnation. I guess you may not comprehend this concept considering your previous odious ramblings against the mentally and physically challenged. At this stage, this accusation against the PM is simply an allegation which she has already refuted during the campaign. No one expected any other response.

      The other matters against Manning, Hart etc. involve legally actionable, corrupt acts which violate the laws of T&T and raid the national patrimony.
      If charges are ever brought, I will be delighted. Yes.

  9. I sit back in amusement and watch these childish adults cuss out each other on a public forum that ought to be dedicated to talking ideas of making the country better. While I disagree with Dr. Cudjoe’s saying that Ms. Bissessar should admit to a “drinking problem” because it will fracture a fragile coalition, and that cannot be good for the country to have to call another election in this ungovernable place,so soon; TMan and Mr.Williams are waging a pissing contest, and challenging in one case the “manhood ” of Dr, Cudjoe That is as low a blow as one can hit, and presages what would happen to Ms. Bissessar if she admits to more that “liking mi rum, so what”. For example, Tobagonians, incensed at her insensitive remarks about who vex, may be justified in asking publicly how many of the rums she likes did she have before making those remarks, and wehether a sobriety test should be administered before she makes her daily decisions about governing this contentious country. She seeemed in Ramlogan mode, that is, determined to offend as many people as possible, forgetting meanwhile, or perhaps trying to distract from, the Sword of Damocles hanging over her head in the case of the disappeared(?)Jack Warner. Or, maybe, she thinks Tobago is easy to “beat up”. Boy, she’d find out!
    Now, a comment like the one I just made, will probably move Tman from applauding my previous comment, to calling me a racist-the favorite designation of all those who cannot get me to stop writing, and who cannot refute what I say with logic. There is a thinking mind back of this “pretty” face. It does not function like men’s minds, most men that is, which seems to be located in their gonads rather than behind their eyes.(U.S. Rep Weiner is a case in point, sending ridiculous pictures of himself to scholgirls, and not wanting to resign when he is caught. ) No middle aged woman in high position would do such a stupid thing, although the President of Ireland’s parliament came close. But, back to the drinking and Ms. Kamla and you guys. I feel disappointed when you refuse to engage in serious talk about an issue, and expose your narrow minds, some narrow and limited too, to public scrutiny. You do our founding father a dis-service. He made education free for everyone, although its obvious some peole only went to school. They did not benefit from it one whit.Let us try, if we could not to attack a man’s “manhood” being built like a donkey, often causes one to act like an ass.
    A number of Vietnam Veterans, victims of “Bouncing Bettys” small bombds hidden in cowpats and designed to castrate,came home to the US without their genitalia. They continued to be very productive citizens, while leavng the production of children to others.
    Guys, do try to keep the discussion on an elevated level, above the gonads, that is.And I go on record as saying the Dr. Cudjoe was very brave in this macho man society, to talk of his medical issues. There are thousands like him without the guts to talk of it. I salute you for that, Selwyn.There are thousands more who are non-performers as men, because of thier drinking problems.

    1. Linda wrote “She seeemed in Ramlogan mode, that is, determined to offend as many people as possible, forgetting meanwhile, or perhaps trying to distract from, the Sword of Damocles hanging over her head in the case of the disappeared(?)Jack Warner. Or, maybe, she thinks Tobago is easy to “beat up”.

      Linda it appears as though you were high on burbon and coke when you wrote this.(lol). If you carefully follow the movement of the PM in Tobago you will realise that Tobagonians abosultely adore the PM. The same can’t be said for you Linda. Trying going to Tobago and getting 10 people to meet you. I can bet that you cant even muster up 2.

      When the PM campaigned in Tobago thousands upon thousands showed up at the rallies. She is doing what any good Prime Minister would do and that is to by-pass the corrupt THA and work directly with the people. Now how would that translate into your “burbon” related tirade of saying the PM wants to “beat-up” Tobagonians? I fail again to see the co-relation. Rather I think the Leader of the PNM lead THA is seeing his last days and it is going to blows for so for him and his lackies. Tobagonians are going to send this corrupt man packing. And the Queen will reign over the sister isles in regal splendor. In the mean time Linda stay off the burbon and coke… Mamoo out.

  10. She continues this morning making other intemperate headlines. I am high on prayer for my ocuntry. The sentence structures I create,Mamoo, could not be done by a drunk. Whether I am preparing script for an oil executive coming to work in TnT, talking to a kindergarten class, or addressing a multicultural group of educated travels, I prepare my own material. Could she say the same?Could you, of yourself?

    1. Nobody prepares their own materials. Ideas comes from others, it is just the world we live in. The doc got his idea of a drunk PM from Panday a known alcoholic. Then he extrapolated on that idea and imputed his own bias. Was it his idea Linda? Obviously not!!

      I am sure you prepare your own material but it takes the research and papers written by others to point you in a particular direction. You “gleen” thoughts that are akin to your world view and then in your plageristic manner present these thoughts as your own. Bravo.

      It is now your ideas, your thoughts and your cacundrum. But seriously Linda can your really defend anything without holding on to someone else’s idea. As you said “She continues this morning making other intemperate headlines”. REALLY, sounds like a burbon and coke statement here… And you can’t convince me otherwise.

  11. TMan Wrote: If Cudjoe is truly concerned about the welfare of the PM, he should use his powerful influence to effect change privately, rather than create mischief by writing public articles characterised by generalizations based on inconclusive research. His attempt to highlight his own impotency is merely a mask to create political mischief and once again stimulate a debate on race.

    Like I said, Your deceit is monumental. Defining Doctor Cudjoe’s exercise of his freedom of speech, his right as a commentator on political issues in T&T to voice his opinion on an Indian PM as an attempt to create public mischief poignantly illuminates how you wiggle and waggle in your racist postulations.

    People like you are so damn concretized in prejudice and double standards that it has become the norm, rather than the exception in your commentary. Me, I am here to expose it. To deny you the platform to deceive people in this forum.

    You have historically in this forum jumped on every bandwagon of criticism against Manning et al when allegations of human failings get public attention. I tell you, George Orwell must have peeped into the future and espied the present T&T and its hypocritical pundits like you Tman, before sitting down and configuring the personality of his revolutionary pigs. hypocrisy and like George Orwells revolutionary

  12. Again, Mamoo, you do not appear to know what you are talking about. I design questioniares to ascertain what the needs are and create original material to address those needs, but this is apparently above the heads of crammers and foggers (forgers) . When I was at the teachers’ college many many years ago, a few seniors stole my first year notes to cram for their exams. They had spent a lot of time skylarking, while I was so good at notetaking, that I wrote down every word the instructor said, then later tried to make sense of it, in my own way. If everyone copies from eeryone, why do I have copywright certificates for my ceated works? Why does each publiation have its own ISBN number? Why is industrial espionage such big busines and major crime? Why do you not have as much wealth or created things as Bill Gates does? Your non-sense astounds me.
    There are only 26 letters in the English alphabet, but people create and recreate new things words, ideas, from them every day. Look, I think I have done all I could to educate you. All right?

    1. All I am saying Linda is your ideas are not your own, it is gleen from others and transpose into your world view. If it does not fit your world view then you will not hold on to it. Do you think the American space program was their idea? Ask the German Nazis who worked on it. Do you think our system of governance was our idea? Ask the Brits. Do you think slave trade was the British idea? Ask the Romans who amassed thousand upon thousands of slaves.

      I could go on Linda, but all I am saying is we don’t live independent of each other’s world view. Please try and understand instead of making all of us feel on this board that you are the only intellectual…

  13. At lunch today, I watched US Congresman Antony weiner resign from his positio n of public trust. His eyes were full of tears.I had been calling for him to step down since the admission that he sent the pictures, and as it got worse, andthe pictures of him in a bath-towel in the Congressional gym made headlines, he asked for a “leave of abence” sudenly, he could not face his colleagues, or foes. At lunch, I was briefing my friend who was travelling upcountry acros sthe atlantic.
    now, to gove Mr. Weiner credit, he ceased to say people were blaming him for things he did not do. He is Jewish, but he did not see cries for his resignation as an anti-Semitic plot to get the “Lone Jew in Congress”. He is not the only one anyway.
    Finally he manned up.Sending pictures to teenage girls, as a big man, is totally unacceptable.
    The point about this is a big man’s fall from grace. He manned up to wrongdoing,was pushed towards the door by his friends, and is gone. That is the American way. Mr. Warner is afraid of going to America to a meeting or of even going to the Bahamas. He is afreid that the truths they know will have some bad consequences for him. Again, Kamla needs to put her foot down on this issue. She should not allow herself to continue to be silently blackmailed. If this goes on, she would really hit the bottle hard, and we will all suffer for it.

  14. MAdam KAmla,I know you are a bit distracted at the moment with an unwell spouse, but as soon as you get to your office on Monday, fire Sasha Mohammed’s butt. OK?
    If a subordinate in your office, threatens a public person(In this case reporters at the Express,) with harm, based on their exposure of a governmment blunder and various shady dealings,which is their very public job, that employee has taken upon herself the job of talking for you.
    You can either repudiate her position by booting her out, or acquiesce in her threats by keeping her on. Never mind that she used her home computer. She was at the time, your employee.
    Now are you going to silently support Ms. Shasha Mohammed, or will she be let go. She is a criminal. Terroristic threatening is a crime worldwide. Are we going to wait until she crries out her threat? If she thnks a PM is above criticism, she should not be working for you. I might even be in danger for writing this!
    I think she should publicly apologise to all the Janice Thomas’ in the phone book and elsewhere.Unless of course, she could produce a Janice Thomas who would admit to doing this. Thomas is a venerable old name in Trinidad. My mother’s cousin Arthur Thomas was, more than sixty-eight years ago the first non-white principal of a government school. He was on par with that Arima great Eugene Laurent Sr.To abuse a name like that, when she could have chosen an identifiably Indian name, reminds me of a group of Indian bandits in Arima around 1984 who robbed a bank wearing rasta wigs. Their car crashed on Cocorite road, but it took a while for the police to connect the dots because they were looking for four RAstafarians. I used a similar scene in my novel Coin of Gold. It is based on facts.
    Do not allow people close to you to malign those who helped put you there.You need to soberly consider the only position you can take. Sasha Must Go. Such a person might well be keeping secret files on you, for some nefarious purpose.

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