Law & Politics
by Lloyd Noel
We have now gone past the first nine months of our clean-sweep Government, in total control of the nation’s affairs — with no one in any position of authority to question the actions and omissions of the political rulers on matters of State.
And to think that this was the second time, that the same leader and his NNP candidates, had successfully persuaded the majority of voters in the state to choose them and them alone.
Many would argue, that as a direct result the party and leader should have been amply qualified, to make the most of such a vote of total confidence, and not to repeat any of the mistakes made before.
Others would no doubt take the view, that because there is no one to even question their actions and omissions — then they can do as they please and do not give a damn to whoever thinks or feels otherwise.
Whichever side is right or wrong about the rulers’ attitude and or their mode of behaviour — it really does not matter at this point in time, because time is on the controllers’ side at this stage; but as the months change into years, and the years draw closer to the end of their term, it will become a horse of a very different colour.
On the other hand, in my view, the current controllers who have achieved this unique position for a second time — they have a duty and should display a far more caring and concerned attitude for the people who place them in that special position for the second time in four elections.
Instead, based on what is soon to be taking place all over the islands, the very people are having a hard time trying to make ends meet on a daily basis.
And as a couple pointed out to me one day last week — at this time of the year, the many trucks used to be seen going up the western side loaded with those Christmas barrels from the USA and UK, so far they saw one or two trucks with four barrels.
That seems to be the pattern on all sides as far as those barrels are expected, and those who are being denied the free gifts from overseas, are the very ones who are now sitting at home with no jobs in sight thus far.
So that as we go into the last month of this year — regardless of what the up coming Budget may disclose for the next year — the economic picture looks very bleak indeed, and the many homes Island-wide that would have received an Xmas cheer from those free barrels, they are now in double despair with no jobs and no free barrels from relatives overseas.
And while this situation is already so very desperate — all the talk from those in control seems to be about more taxes come next year to meet government expenses.
It is difficult to see where the taxes would be coming from — unless the economy picks up from where it has been in limbo for too many years now — and all the available signs tend to be showing that any upward movement will be a long time in coming.
The few persons who will have to pay more income tax, from the drop in the earnings level to three thousand per month — these will make no big difference to tax collection.
As for the increase in property tax and any other taxes, these will only reduce the spending power of a whole lot of taxpayers, so that the business level and shops sales in general will decline, to the detriment of the treasury.
The campaign bait that was thrown out to the voters before February this year — was that the foreign investors were lining up to come ashore, and invest their millions to provide jobs for the many thousands of un-employed, hopefully waiting to start working within the first ninety days.
Quite naturally the voters fell for the nice-sounding promises, and the election results were history repeating itself for the same leader and his party.
Not only have no jobs been provided — except for the few gangs of roads maintenance workers who get a fortnight every two or three months — but many more persons found themselves on the un-employment bandwagon that is just standing still.
And now to add insult to injury, the up-coming budget is widely rumoured to be adding additional expenses to homeowners and those lucky enough to be employed.
If that state of affairs is progress and nation-building, then something must be very wrong with the language on the one hand, but more importantly with the plans and economic vision of those in control of the nation’s affairs.
We are hearing no more about those foreign investors coming to provide jobs, although the law was changed some months ago, and even after the PM’s overseas tour when he was expected to meet with some of them to finalise plans.
The current Investment ole talk nowadays, is about people leasing the four government estates in the two islands, to bring them back into operation and provide agricultural jobs.
Where such persons would be coming from to embark on that kind of investment — only those in control would know about that, but so far no further information forthcoming.
So we can only wait for that special Budget [on Tuesday, 10 December], to see what it will provide and where it will take us as a people in dire need in the coming year.