IT IS, paradoxically, so easy to overlook and diminish Donald Trump, despite his ubiquitous presence in the news media worldwide. It seems natural to underestimate and dismiss as a temporary phenomenon this fatuous blowhard who seems so sensationally self-absorbed and disloyal that it is a wonder he has any political allies or even business associates. Trump has proven to be a headline hog who has so debased the office of president of the United States that pundits and casual observers alike still bet privately and occasionally publicly that he will not complete his first term in office.
Brilliant. That single word describes the plan outlined by Prime Minister Dr Hubert Minnis to turn Ragged Island in the southern Bahamas into a regional model, sustainable island capable of withstanding threats from increasingly powerful storms and providing for its own power and clean water through renewable sources.
AS IF to make amends for an embarrassing blunder, the much troubled Baha Mar resort prepared dinner Thursday evening for Family Islanders who had been flown to Nassau and housed at the New Providence Community Centre to escape the wrath of Hurricane Irma.
A WEEK ago as massive Hurricane Irma was barreling toward The Bahamas threatening life and limb, this newspaper, other media houses and the general public tore into Bahamas Power and Light for its lack of preparation. Where were the trucks that were supposed to be trimming trees ahead of the storm? Where had they been since the start of the hurricane season? With winds predicted at more than 150mph, fear of a strong storm surge and trees overhanging power lines from one end of the island to the next, we could be facing days, weeks, even months without power if heavy branches snapped and crushed supply lines.
DURING the FNM’s first Budget debate shortly after being elected this year, Cat island MP Philip “Brave” Davis was on his feet in the House of Assembly to defend his defeated government’s decision to award $11m in contracts to build three clinics in his Cat Island constituency. In fact it was significant that the contracts were awarded just before the May 10 election. In addition to clinics for Cat Island, contracts were also awarded for a clinic in Rum Cay and one for San Salvador, bringing the total cost to just under $14m for Mr Davis’ entire constituency.
WITH ALL the mind-boggling technical equipment created by man to track storms there is nothing that can outstrip nature’s early warning signals.
ON MONDAY, as Hurricane Irma swirled in the Atlantic gathering strength on what appears to be a direct path for the southeastern Bahamas, Prime Minister Dr Hubert Minnis and officials from various ministries and departments held a press conference at Police Headquarters.
LAST WEEK, Foreign Affairs Minister Darren Henfield announced China’s new restrictions on overseas investments. In so doing, he said that these restrictions could possibly affect “new investments” in The Bahamas, but not those already approved. Yet this is contrary to the very pronouncements of the President of China and many of China’s largest companies have started selling their controversial real estate holdings. In fact, last week in London, a Chinese “powerhouse” pulled out of a deal that, like the sale of Baha Mar to CTF, had not closed.
“WE RISE”, a new group claiming that it wants “something done” about “injustice, wrongful terminations and violent crime”, has announced that it will call a protest march for the Southern Recreation grounds on Saturday. As far as they are concerned the new government is moving in the wrong direction.
IN many significant ways, the new administration is off to a good start. Its anti-corruption stance, strong warning to those who would commit violent crimes, making good on long-sought after promises for Crown Land, decision not to fund Carnival all verbalize a side of governance that the public is eager to hear. It has been a message of ‘We will get the bad guys, deter future bad guys before they act and reward the good guys.’
PLP CHAIRMAN Bradley Roberts and his sidekick, PLP Senator Fred Mitchell, have gone out of their way to criticise the FNM government for at last telling the unvarnished truth —at least as far as the FNM knew it at the time – about the critical state of the economy. They laid it out in their first budget debate in parliament in June giving notice that the new government would have to borrow $323m to cover the deficit for the 2017-2018 fiscal year and an additional $400m to cover the fiscal overhang for 2016-2017.
WITH the US presidency stumbling from one crisis to another during the last few months, those who want it to fail are now scenting blood in the aftermath of the furore over the drama at Charlottesville and the latest in a string of high profile departures from the White House. But what does this mean for America’s position in the world?
ON Monday, August 21, shaken by the third murder in two days, Minister of National Security Marvin Dames convened a meeting of senior police officers, including the current but reportedly soon to be erstwhile Commissioner of Police Ellison Greenslade. He asked them to reveal their strategy for fighting violent crime and the criminal activity that ends in murder or attempted murder. We have no doubt that the senior police officers in that room gave the National Security Minister the best briefing they had to offer.
FIFTY years ago, the US was torn apart by racial unrest, rioting and social upheaval. Race relations, political assassinations and an unpopular Vietnam War fuelled the tumult.
IN JUNE, we called in these columns for a major reassessment of the government’s tourism policy and promotion in the face of growing competition from our Caribbean rivals, including Cuba.