Barbados Government Acts Quickly To Stem Rampant Television Piracy – But Forget About Medical Care, Environmental Legislation etc etc etc

The Government of Barbados moved quickly to make television piracy illegal. According to The Nation News, one in seven households on the island has a device to receive cable TV without paying for the service.

The point of the editorial though, is how quickly the government can move to produce legislation when it’s own revenue streams are attacked – but when it comes to health care and other concerns, hey – that’s something else…

Some excerpts from The Nation News

GOVERNMENT HAS the crucial responsibility to secure the well-being of its people in, among other things, important crises, the reinforcement of existing legislation as well as through creation of new laws or amendments. Special circumstances, unusual or unforeseen trends, occurrences, or, as in the case of Cricket World Cup, current events that concern the people, all indicate an overdue review of laws.

Case in point: the recent introduction of an amendment to the Telecommunications Act which stands as an example of the Barbados Government’s chosen reaction to special circumstances and/or unusual trends.

The amendment, titled the Telecommunications (Amendment) Bill 2006, comes as a direct result of fraudulent use by unscrupulous people of a device that gives non-subscribers the same access privileges as subscribers have, to the state-owned Caribbean Broadcasting Corporation (CBC) cable television service.

The relative haste with which this amendment has been produced speaks to its urgency and vaunted legislative priority in the eyes of a Government which seems over zealous about imposing penalties…

It was sheer irony that on the same page on which news of the amendment to the telecommunications law was published, on August 1, the other published item informed: “Five hours and 55 minutes was how long it took some patients to get their prescriptions filled at the Queen Elizabeth Hospital (QEH) yesterday.”

The two developments were obviously exclusive; nevertheless the contrast was too conflicting for keen readers not to observe….

Read the entire article at The Nation News (link here)


Filed under Barbados, Crime & Law, Island Life, Politics & Corruption

2 responses to “Barbados Government Acts Quickly To Stem Rampant Television Piracy – But Forget About Medical Care, Environmental Legislation etc etc etc

  1. Enquiring Minds..

    “Nuff respeck” to CBC-TV Chairman Allan Fields
    for taking a tough stance with pirates receiving Television signal
    via illegal or illicit receiver boxes!

    Maybe the technology exists to detect the bad boys,
    but can CBC afford that technology?
    Are the bad boys ‘safe’? – or does CBC really ‘have teeth’?
    Only time will tell!

    I have a question for Sir Allan.
    I am a legitimate paying customer of CBC’s MultiChoice TV service,
    and have been supplied, like everyone else, with a shoddy decoder box,
    cheaply made in Tawian,by an unknown electronics firm specialising in making boxes as cheaply as the customer wants them to be:
    – I invite you to check it out on the internet, like I did!
    Further, that Taiwanese box is armed with inadequate software
    that either crashes entirely, freezes, or otherwise malfunctions twice daily,
    to my great frustration and many more grey hairs!

    Despite having been informed of the lousy quality of these “new” boxes,
    – the whole island knows just how lousy they are-
    CBC seems unable to offer any service better than they do!

    So just who is ripping off Just Who?

    Is CBC ripping off the paying public
    by charging us Grade A prices
    for a Grade C televison product??

    Is it any surprise at all that there are people out there
    determined to outfox CBC’s $20 a month value?
    This is the same $20 a month real-value
    that I am presently paying nearly $100 a month for.

    See what I mean about paying Grade A prices,
    for a Grade C product ?
    (in other words, the usual 100% Bajan scenario!)

    Just wondering out loud!

  2. I am nine months pregnant, and due to personal circumstances at about eight months I could no longer afford private medical care for my pregnancy. So at this point in my pregnancy, I have to go to the hospital once a week for a check up. Now while the doctors themselves are great, and I have no complaint about the actual medical care, the processes by which things are done in the hospital is nothing short of awe-inspiring six years into the 21st century.

    Just to get an out-patient card, it took two visits where all the requirements were not explained to me… three hours sitting down outside the Medical Records department patiently waiting to be seen for a process that actually took less than five minutes to complete.

    The ante-natal clinic is horrendous. My first time I was given an appointment for 8am, and I showed up at 7.45am thinking I was early, only to discover that I was number 41 to be seen. It took from 7.45am to 1.15am to be seen by a doctor.

    Plus there is this enormous amount of PAPER… and nowhere did I see a computer except in the accounts department. Just reams and reams of paper. Number are handed out on bits of cardboard.

    In the ante-natal clinic, there is no air-conditioning, there are not enough seats for the women that come there, so often if you are late you are doomed to stand up in a room that is not ventilated properly. Can you imagine what this is like when you’re seven, eight, nine months pregnant. Sitting is not easier. The chairs are all hard and uncomfortable, and there is no water fountain much less a water dispenser. A bottle of water and four or five glasses is provided for sometimes as many as sixty women.

    After the first time, I got a clue and now wake up at 5.30am to get to the hospital early enough to get a high number so I can leave there at a reasonable hour… let’s say around 10.30am.

    I cannot complain about the actual medical care… that is good. However the quality of the facilities is abysmal, and the methodology for doing everything extraordinarily backward for a hospital in 2006.

    Socialised health care is all fine and good, but last week after being admitted to hospital for observation after the discovery of a heart murmur, I can tell you being comfortable in the hospital is completely in the patients hands. The beds are uncomfortable, the food awful, there is no privacy, no toilet paper in the bathrooms, no sense of dignity… and there is a tendency among the nurses to treat you either like a half-idiot or a child. There is NO DIGNITY to being a patient at the Queen Elizabeth Hospital.

    But if you cannot afford private care, it is better than nothing.

    I was wondering though, what will happen next year during The World Cup? I cannot imagine QEH dealing with an influx of a disaster… it would be bedlam, and I can see how the bureaucracy of the internal systems could lead to some stupid stuff happening.

    When I tell my friends in the US that I cannot even draw the curtain around my bed for some privacy, they cannot believe me. They say in the US the patient’s right to privacy is paramount… in QEH, only doctors draw the curtains… patients cannot do so.

    :sigh: Ok… flame off.