Addressing income inequality

By Raffique Shah
August 14, 2018

Raffique ShahLast week, when I wrote about the plight of the “working poor” in this country and the need for all interest-groups to address what is clearly a huge socio-economic problem, I was unaware that the issue had attracted international attention and there is actually an organisation based in Paris, France, that, since 2011, has focussed on what they have designated “income inequality”.
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“Don’t Talk About It; Be About It!”

By Dr Selwyn R. Cudjoe
August 12, 2018

Dr. Selwyn R. CudjoeMy first impulse was to congratulate the government for voting to appoint Gary Griffith Commissioner of Police (CoP). Whatever Griffith’s weaknesses, his appointment promised to give the police force the stability it deserves and the country the space it needs to breathe easier; that is, until Stuart Young, “Ad-minister of everything but master of nothing,” was recycled into the Ministry of National Security.

Without even being confirmed, Griffith hit the airways telling the population what he would and would not do although prudence dictated that he meet with the leadership of the police force, learn from their experiences, and tell them of his plans to make the force a more efficient unit. After such discussions, he could have determined how best to attack the monster called crime.
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Compiling the Costs of a No-Deal Brexit Armageddon

By Stephen Kangal
August 09, 2018

Stephen KangalThe image of traffic jams approaching the port of Dover conjures up chilling and growing fears for the unquantifiable consequences of a no-deal Brexit cliff-edge, doomsday scenario from the UK’s withdrawal from the single market, European Court, functional co-operation and the customs union of the EU. The panic button (clock is ticking) is being increasingly pressed on both sides with eight months left to reach agreement on the crucial Withdrawal Bill by 30 March 2019.
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Plight of the working poor

By Raffique Shah
August 08, 2018

Raffique ShahWhereas the poor in the society are very visible, tens of thousands of adults who can best be described as the “working poor” remain largely invisible, barely surviving the purgatory-like existence the majority of them are condemned to live in for their life spans.

While there are entire ministries and government agencies established to address poverty through multi-pronged programmes, hardly anyone spares a thought for the plight of the working poor, who would probably be best categorised as the wretched of the earth, to borrow a term coined by Martinique-born intellectual Frantz Fanon.
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Strengthening PNM

By Dr Selwyn R. Cudjoe
August 06, 2018

Dr. Selwyn R. CudjoeFrancis Bertrand has been a PNM member for 49 years. He joined the party in 1969 and became a member of its Youth League. His academic and sporting brilliance at Presentation College led to a scholarship to Long Island University in New York. After he returned home, he became the mayor of Point Fortin and served for two terms as president of the World Conference of Mayors.
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Crying over Caroni’s evaporated aged rums

By Raffique Shah
August 02, 2018

Raffique ShahSometimes when you live long enough, you get around to enjoying the proverbial “last laugh”, or, in this case, the “last cry”, depending on your perspective.

On Republic Day 2000, I wrote a story in the now-defunct Independent newspaper telling of a report compiled by a professional “alcohol valuator”, American Robert Fuchs, that assessed the value of the aged rum stocks that Caroni Ltd held at its bonds on the compound of the distillery at Caroni Village.

Fuchs told Caroni that its 18,000-plus casks of rum of varying vintages, if converted into premium aged rums on a phased basis, could gross between TT $1 billion and $6 billion, depending on “intent of product”.
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US Political Ecology Militates Against Putin’s Visit

By Stephen Kangal
August 01, 2018

Stephen KangalWith the shock- waves of the post-Helsinki outrage still manifesting itself both in Capitol Hill and the US media, President Trump’s invitation to Russian President Vladimir Putin to The White House this autumn without the input/ knowledge of national intelligence head Dan Coats is an overt diversionary tactic designed to pour oil on troubled waters.
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Open Yo’ Eyes & Ears, PNM…

By Dr Selwyn R. Cudjoe
July 30, 2018

“Hear now this, O foolish people, and without understanding; which have eyes, and see not; which have ears, and hear not.” — Jeremiah 5:21

Dr. Selwyn R. CudjoeAny party that has any pretensions to be relevant to its people needs to take time out to listen to what they are saying. The recent by-election came and went. The United National Congress won a seat—it increased its margin of victory-and the People’s National Movement (PNM) lost a seat—its margin of victory decreased. One would think the ruling party would examine why it didn’t do as well as it wanted to.
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Looking for a commissioner or a “Bobolee”?

By Raffique Shah
July 25, 2018

Raffique ShahI pity the poor bugger who finds favour with both government and opposition parties to be appointed the new Commissioner of Police. If that wretched soul happens to be Captain Gary Grffith as reported in the Sunday Express, then I’ll do something I’ve not done in 50-odd years: I’ll fall on my knees and pray that Jah makes the purgatory of that post easy for him for the few months that he would become the “Chief Bobolee” to blame for the crime epidemic that no mortal can mitigate, far less eradicate.
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Britain Bracing for A Catastrophic Brexit Ides of March 2019

By Stephen Kangal
July 24, 2018
Croydon England

Stephen KangalRed flags and red lines in anticipation of a no deal Brexit with the UK crashing out of the EU come 30 March next year are causing dark clouds of a doomsday scenario to gather over the skies of Britain and the 27 remaining EU countries in what could produce a most disruptive and an unprecedented chaos on both banks of the Channel. A mood of pessimism, political disenchantment in discredited Westminster politics and declining business confidence are increasingly generating traction about a no-deal given the EU’s negative reaction to the Chequers Plan that has been described as unworkable by EU chief negotiator, Francophonie Michel Barnier.
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