Tag Archive for 'T&T Govt'

Turmoil in the global village

By Raffique Shah
August 14, 2019

Raffique ShahIt’s so easy for us to be so overwhelmed by our own mess—and there’s more than enough sewage there to drown us all—that we are unmindful of what’s happening in the wider world, developments that could impact our small island state negatively.

When the fallout from certain actions by powerful leaders hit us in the face with a bang, we will come awake startled, crying out: Oh Jeezanages! I was watching Marlene McDonald and her gang…ah didn’t see that bolt from Donald Trump (or Xi Jinping or Boris Johnson or Vladimir Putin) coming this way!
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Staying Woke!

By Dr Selwyn R. Cudjoe
August 14, 2019

Dr. Selwyn R. CudjoeLast week I urged the government to suspend or postpone the construction of the Toco-Manzanilla Highway. I drew on Lord Maynard Keynes to emphasize that an economist must possess several gifts (mathematics, history, philosophy) and “must study the present in light of the past for the purposes of the future.” This implies that development consists of more than building roads, particularly if citizens are unable to walk or ride on them in relative safety.
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One step away from Hell

By Raffique Shah
August 09, 2019

Raffique ShahStirring racial tensions during the run-up to major elections in Trinidad and Tobago is an appeal to primal ethnic instincts as old as when adult franchise was first granted to what was then a British crown colony back in 1946 when I was born. And I dare say it’s as ancient and decrepit as I am today, so much so that it should have long been buried or consigned to the dustbin of history.
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The Road Make to Walk…

By Dr Selwyn R. Cudjoe
August 06, 2019

Dr. Selwyn R. CudjoeLast Sunday, four of the five Sunday columnists of this newspaper wrote about the crime problem that confronts the nation. The Sunday Guardian also published a long investigative piece on the subject. On Monday, Archbishop Charles Jason Gordon talked about the pervasiveness of crime and concluded that ours is “a culture of disrespect.” At a fundamental level, it is more an economic-philosophical than a moral question. Left unattended and incorrectly analyzed, it will lead to greater degeneracy.
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We are all in this Together

By Dr Selwyn R. Cudjoe
July 30, 2019

Dr. Selwyn R. CudjoeWith things getting hotter and deadlier, one recognizes how far our society has gone out of joint. With criminals finding more ingenious ways to avenge their grievances—like taking a boat from Sea Lots to catch their targets unaware in Las Cuevas—one wonders if the government and/or civic organizations are as ingenious as the criminals in getting the society back on an even keel.
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Crime and punishment T&T style

By Raffique Shah
July 25, 2019

Raffique ShahOozing from the barrels of blood that flowed from the bullet-ridden corpses of last week’s 24 murder victims and almost as many who suffered serious to critical gunshot wounds were several important lessons that we may choose to ignore, to our peril. Violent crimes have spiralled out of control, and most people are inured to the blood and gore that once shocked us. Now, spectators calmly record the macabre murders on their smart-phone cameras, video-clips to be uploaded on the Intrernet. Some achieve viral videos ratings, providing entertainment for huge audiences on social media.
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US demonising China

By Raffique Shah
July 12, 2019

Raffique ShahLast May, Minister of Finance Colm Imbert announced at a post-Cabinet media briefing that Shanghai Construction had been awarded a billion-dollar contract to build the Port-of-Spain General Hospital’s new central block. Minister Imbert said that the Chinese construction giant, which is no stranger to undertaking big projects in Trinidad and Tobago, had bid TT $1 billion, which was $600 million less than Bouygues Batiment, a French company.
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While Rome Burned…

By Dr Selwyn R. Cudjoe
July 09, 2019

Dr. Selwyn R. CudjoeLast Sunday I wrote that in spite of our material prosperity, our spiritual being is diminished in the process. I noted: “We cannot walk the streets as freely as we want, we are overwhelmed by corruption and crime, and our interaction as social beings has been tragically reduced.”

That evening Mount Lambert residents witnessed bullets flying all over the place as two gangs took on each other. One resident said: “‘[It was] like a scene out of a movie in which warring factions traded bullets with each other…. It showed that criminals were becoming more and more brazen since they no longer had any fear of committing crimes in broad daylight and for any and every one to see” (Express, July 1).
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The Search for Truth

By Dr Selwyn R. Cudjoe
July 04, 2019

Dr. Selwyn R. CudjoeMy article last week, “The Labyrinthine World of Doublethink,” must have touched a nerve. I received comments, some good, and some bad, from a wide array of people. This suggests that I was not understood entirely or that many interpretations could be taken from my article.

Any time a writer has to explain his work it means that he has not been as clear as he should have been. It’s a difficult task to convey what he believes to be true when his medium requires the use of language whose nature can be elusive. It’s always a struggle to get it right.
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Fools rush in

By Raffique Shah
July 01, 2019

Raffique ShahI feel a sense of déjà vu, of having been there, seen that, whenever some self-proclaimed leader or obscure group announces the formation of a new political party—which seems to be a frequent occurrence, with three major elections looming large on the horizon. While this is merely democracy at work, citizens exercising their right to run for political office, too many fools are rushing into a maelstrom that wise men avoid like the proverbial plague.
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