What Went Wrong With The BLP Government – And How The DLP Is Heading The Same Way

“There are a thousand hacking at the branches of evil to one who is striking at the root…” Henry David Thoreau.

I remember the heady days when the BLP under Owen Arthur first took power. After the pillaging of the treasury and unfair nepotism that went on under the DLP government we thought that the fresh BLP faces would right the wrongs and be truly concerned about the ordinary Bajans – rather than lining their own pockets. The BLP were “good, basically honest people”, we said.

But we had it wrong, because the BLP members were not “good, basically honest people.” They were just like us and folks everywhere. They were only people.

For a time, it seemed that our hopes had been answered. And, if we looked a little too closely and saw some new nepotism or a little bit of skimming going on we rationalized it, saying that a little of that behaviour was to be expected. The public attitude was “What can you do? They are basically good people. As long as they don’t go over the top.”

But as we soon realised, when there are no effective rules against profiting from public office, when there is no freedom of information act to allow the public and the opposition to hold the government accountable – the rot of corruption spreads like lice at a kindergarten. One head and soon it is everywhere.

Without Rules & Standards, Could You Withstand Such Temptation?

Without defined standards of conduct, oversight and potential punishment for corruption, no person is honest enough to hold the keys to the public treasury. With no effective rules, who among us would not be tempted sooner or later? You? Me? David Thompson?

The public disgust with the wholesale theft and corruption that happened under the BLP government is why David Thompson and the DLP promised to implement effective anti-corruption measures and why voters gave them a big majority.

The first promised anti-corruption measure was to be a Ministerial Code that was to be adopted immediately – as opposed to a 100 day time frame for some other integrity initiatives.

But the new David Thompson government reneged on that promise. And now, DLP supporters are saying “Prime Minister Thompson and his government are good, basically honest people. Give them more time. Don’t be too hard on them.”

See how easily Prime Minister Thompson puts aside his promise to adopt a Ministerial Code from the first day in office!

How quickly many of the DLP supporters are forgetting why the BLP became corrupt piggies.

Further Reading

I saw this in The Village Voice this morning (It appears that you can take the man out of New York City, but you can’t etc… )

Anyway, the article is right on point about the debate between those DLP fools on this island who say that rules are not that important and those of us who have a bad bad feeling about David Thompson’s decision to break that first all-important promise of immediately establishing a Ministerial Code.

From The Village Voice…

For the Constitution, rather than suggesting that all behave in a godlike manner, recognizes that, to the contrary, people are swine and will take any opportunity to subvert any agreement in order to pursue what they consider to be their proper interests.

To that end, the Constitution separates the power of the state into those three branches which are for most of us (I include myself) the only thing we remember from 12 years of schooling.

The Constitution, written by men with some experience of actual government, assumes that the chief executive will work to be king, the Parliament will scheme to sell off the silverware, and the judiciary will consider itself Olympian and do everything it can to much improve (destroy) the work of the other two branches. So the Constitution pits them against each other, in the attempt not to achieve stasis, but rather to allow for the constant corrections necessary to prevent one branch from getting too much power for too long.

… from The Village Voice David Mamet: Why I Am No Longer A Brain-Dead Liberal

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69 Comments

Filed under Barbados, Corruption, Crime & Law, Political Corruption, Politics, Politics & Corruption

69 responses to “What Went Wrong With The BLP Government – And How The DLP Is Heading The Same Way

  1. Hants

    BFP…Interesting change to some European standards of Law.

    Guilty until proven Innocent.

    I still believe in Innocent until proven Guilty.

    David Thompson and the DLP are GUILTY of not immediately enacting the Ministerial Code of Conduct.

    They are NOT GUILTY of “the wholesale theft and corruption that happened under the BLP government.

    They are GUILTY of firing 11 members of the Owing Arthur dining club and saving 1/2 million dollars a year in “feed”.

    They are GUILTY of agressively attacking the immediate problems facing Barbados and doing a good job so far.

    And you BFP continue to do a great job “Keeping them Honest”.

    I will continue to be a loyal supporter of BFP and the DLP no matter what Cliverton say.

    **********

    BFP says

    Hi Hants,

    I do hear what you are saying, but our point remains… without laws and standards, the Cabinet cannot be guilty or innocent of anything – because anything goes. That of course is the whole problem, the very root of the problem with the corruption of past governments.

    But Thompson and his DLP are guilty as charged of promising to adopt the Ministerial Code of Conduct immediately upon forming a government – and not doing so.

    Citizens are free to make their own assumptions as to the DLP’s motivation for either lying to us or failing to keep their promise.

  2. Hants

    By the way the Phrase “Keeping them honest” is from a CNN program calling out politicians when they “bend the truth”.

  3. Tell me Why

    Hants, do you have any word on the near $600,000.00 in buffer payment to ADM Barbados Ltd to maintain a price cap on flour?

    Do you know the value of flour per month to consumers?

    How many more buffers in the pipeline to ease our cost of living?

    Are these buffers and CET removals entwined within the projected 4.6 per cent increase in the total projected expenditure of 3.4 billion?

    Based on my stupid advice by my St. Giles’ teachers regarding when you borrow you have to pay back. My knuckles will never forget, how about yours. (chuckle)

  4. young one

    Hants
    March 12, 2008 at 4:04 pm
    BFP…Interesting change to some European standards of Law.

    Guilty until proven Innocent.

    I still believe in Innocent until proven Guilty.
    xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx

    how dear you talk about Guilty until proven Innocent. Owen and his people may or not have taken tax payers money but when were they found Guilty? and also if the PM so in arms about the consultants and what they were paid and what they did to get paid, which by all rights bajans should be upset about the wrong doing there, if any, why can’t he say how much Hartly Henry is getting?

    grand standing at it’s best.

  5. Tell me Why

    Hants, Jerome or WIV. Where are your voices. Prior to January 15, 2008, these blogs were processing your comments at high speed. Come on fellas, don’t let your country down.

  6. Hants

    In answer to Tell me why

    My voice is still heard on this blog but I am a DLP supporter and my self imposed job was to help them get elected in my miniscule way.

    I have to work for a living and there is a recession in the USA. I therefore have to spend my time focusing on my Business.

    Besides, the DLP organisation has to decide whether to take this blog seriously and come here and defend themselves.

    I am a supporter not a member.

    I am also not an ego maniac like OSA so I am not letting my country down. There are 100000 other Bajans who can “fill my space.”

    Unlike the “political elite”, I believe there are thousands of Barbadians who are capable of running the Government.

    Nuff said.

  7. reality check

    Unfortuneately, the blogs have become the de facto opposition and conscience for the country.

    Those left in the BLP in Parliament have proved they are not accountable and worse.

    The Judiciary has proved it is in the pockets of those with vested interests and not the little guy.

    The local rags have proved that they are for sale to the highest bidder and government in power.

    BFP keep looking over their shoulders and letting us know when they re failing the citizens in their commitments and duties.

  8. Hantsy Pantsy

    Hants,

    Amazing!

    You have deserted them faster than a bolt of lightning!

    !

  9. Citizen First

    Some questions ..
    1. Is my memory correct that someone said that by the end of February the “true” cost of the highway expansion would be known and a contract determined? Wasn’t a committee consisting of the Minister of Works and the Attorney General given a task and a deadline to investigate this matter?

    2. What does a “political advisor” do? What is such a person paid? Shouldn’t the taxpayers of the country know these things?

    3. Why are public funds and materials being spent on a private residence in St. Elizabeth village? Who is the owner of this house?

  10. Tell me Why

    I have to work for a living and there is a recession in the USA. I therefore have to spend my time focusing on my Business.
    ………………………………………………………………………………….
    I presume you took vacation to represent your party. What a noble gesture. One more for an award Mr. Prime Minister.

  11. Hants

    Hantsy Pantsy says…

    “You have deserted them faster than a bolt of lightning.”

    wrong…I have not deserted anybody.

    I will just reduce the time I spend on this blog and will continue to comment as I see fit.

    Prehaps people like you should contribute in a positive way to “Keep em honest”.

  12. Hants

    Tell me Why…..you really should not waste your comments on me.

    Stay focused and help BFP keep the Dems honest.

  13. Donald Duck, Esq

    Remember the promises. Highlights from the 2008 DLP manifesto with relevant page references

    IMMEDIATE ACTION

    Labour rights legislation ( page 36)

    A new DLP government will move to immediately enact a comprehensive national Labour Rights legislative compendium which will include the following:

     A Full Employment Rights Act
     An Alternative Disputes Settlement and Arbitration Committee
     A Sexual Harassment in the Workplace Act
     National minimum wages legislation
     Legislation fully recognizing Trade Unions.

    Approval of capital account transactions (page 25)

    Immediately review the current Central Bank procedures for approving capital account transactions with a view to simplifying and speeding up the approval (or denial) process for restricted transactions.

    Port charges (page 33)

    The DLP pledges to immediately re-examine the Port charges with a view to significantly reducing these to manufacturers as they consider them to be a burdensome cost. They say that tonnage dues are charged twice; – on raw materials when imported and again on finished products when being exported.

    Integrity legislation (page 48)

    Immediately introduce integrity legislation requiring

     a declaration of assets by public officials,
     a Code of Conduct for Ministers,
     a new Freedom of Information law,
     amendments to the Defamation laws and
     new constitutional provisions to rationalize the powers of the Prime Minister.

    Health issues (page 11)

    A new DLP Government will immediately embark on a health promotion campaign to sensitize the public to the dangers of unhealthy lifestyles

    ISSUES TO BE DEALT WITH IN FIRST 100 DAYS

    Don’t forget the DLP promises to do the following in the first 100 days

     Introduce the Agriculture Protection Act that will require a 2/3 majority of both houses of parliament for a change of use of land from agriculture.

     Remove VAT from building materials on houses valued up to $400,000.
     convene a National Consultation on Education

  14. Waiting To Exhale

    Citizen First
    Like you I real puzzled though… who de house really belong to? And to think that de problem was due to the owners refusal to tek de engineer’s advice and now de bajan public got to pay. I wonda how much money duh spending caus’ I got some work I want do pun my house. You know who I got to talk tuh? I want somebody in guvment to ‘help me out’.

  15. Citizen First

    Waiting To Exhale

    if you find out before I do, please drop me a line! I have a ‘paling’ that is in need of a lot of work. I too ” want somebody in guvment to ‘help me out’!

  16. Fair Play

    BFP
    I have been a regular visitor to your site long before the elections therefore I could have recognized most of your contributor’s political leanings. Since the elections there are new contributors. Your blog will continue to be like a cycle with this two party system. When the BLP was in office DLP supporters attacked the government. Now that the DLP is holding the reins of power the BLP supporters are on the attack. You will have to get off the fence and start an independent movement leading to a new political party for 2012

  17. John

    Here is what happened at St. Elisabeth, then known as Crabhole, back in 1785.

    Anybody building in the Scotland District should by now know that sacrificial structures are better than ones intended to be “permanent”.

    The views are spectacular but the land is unstable. A Government that has figured out Greenland could not fall into the same trap at St. Elisabeth.

    An Account of the Crab-hole land slide, 11th. October, 1785

    From: The History of Barbados by John Poyer, first published in 1808, pp. 569-571.

    “Among the various operations of nature, which excite our admiration, alarm our fears, or amuse our imagination, the following singular and extraordinary phenomenon will not probably be deemed the least curious and interesting. On the eleventh day of October, the inhabitants of a part of St. Joseph’s parish called Crab-Hole, were alarmed at the appearance of several deep fissures in the earth, and their apprehensions were soon augmented, at finding that some small tenements had sunk to a considerable depth. These alarming appearances continuing to increase, many persons were induced to remove their effects to places of greater safety. The plantation known by the name of Walcott’s, was destined to be the melancholy scene of this extraordinary occurrence. Here, the manager, perceiving that the mansion house was in danger of being buried under the soil, which was descending in large, connected masses, from a neighbouring hill, fled with his family to one of the negro huts for shelter. In the course of that distressful night, most of the buildings of the plantation fell, or sunk into a deep chasm, which was presently filled up with the mold from the adjacent heights. The alarm now became general, and the people assembling near the spot were witnesses of a scene of truly awful and affecting. The aspect of the whole region from Walcott’s to Crab-hole, extending upwards of a mile in length, and in breadth about three hundred yards, exhibited a lamentable prospect. The earth, violently torn asunder, was intersected with numerous chasms, whose widely extended jaws seemed ready to ingulph whatever might be precipitated into them; while, in other places, it was swelled and inflated with enormous tumours, whose convulsive motions menaced the few remaining buildings with destruction. Nor was it long before they were involved in the general wreck, and, sinking into the yawning gulf, left no traces of their former existence behind them. The face of nature was so completely changed in that district, that few of the inhabitants could ascertain the spot on which many objects, familiar to their remembrance, had been recently placed. A field, planted in Eddoes, occupied the site on which the mansion house stood, and brought with it a long slip of the broad road, as perfect and entire as if it had not been removed*. The cocoa-nut trees, which grew about the house, and even the windmill, were gradually carried some hundred yards from their original position, where the latter was completely swallowed up, no part of it remaining visible but the extremity of the upper arm.

    It is not easy, perhaps, to explain satisfactorily the cause of this phenomenon. Probable conjecture ascribed it to the action of a number of subterraneous springs, in a loamy sandy soil, surrounded with recent excessive falls of rain: these springs, struggling for vent, might probably have excavated the encumbent earth wherever they endeavoured to force a passage. As these invisible waters glided onwards, the surface behind seems to have fallen in, or, meeting with a substratum of a soapy nature, continued sliding down the adjacent declivities as long as it retained, or acquired, sufficient moisture to facilitate its motion”.

    ——————————————————————————–

    * This is an occurrence that happens, not infrequently, in the parishes of Saint Andrew and Saint Joseph, during the rainy season. In that part of the country, which, from its resemblance to the highlands of North Britain, is Scotland, the earth is composed of various strata obliquely disposed. The super-stratum is generally a rich loamy soil of saponaceous nature, which, being of no considerable depth, easily separates, when saturated with rain, from the substratum, which is commonly of a slippery chalk, flat stones, or loose, red gravel, and slides in large masses, with its growing produce, into the vallies below. Thus whole fields of sugar canes, corn, and potatoes have sometimes changed masters, and even lofty trees have been removed to a considerable distance without injury. Of this the curious reader may find instances related in Hughes ‘s Nat. Hist. Barb. p. 21.

  18. Pat

    John:

    Nice history lesson. I knew the village was formerly called Crab hole, but never heard about the greatland slide. Now, it explains many things about the topography. The story about the springs is correct. There are several in the village. One was behind the old girls school.

    I would like to know who owns that house. When I was home last year it was under construction and almost complete. It seems to have 3 levels/flats. If that is the one I am thinking about, it is on a corner on land previously occupied by the Headleys, or it could be another house in another area, even the New Road.

  19. Tell me Why

    Tell me Why…..you really should not waste your comments on me.

    Stay focused and help BFP keep the Dems honest.
    …………………………………………………………………………………
    I’ll take your advice pal. WIV, Jerome, here I come.

  20. Jerome Hinds

    Tell me Why
    March 13, 2008 at 2:47 am
    Tell me Why…..you really should not waste your comments on me.

    Stay focused and help BFP keep the Dems honest.
    …………………………………………………………………………………
    I’ll take your advice pal. WIV, Jerome, here I come.
    ^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^

    You had me there for a moment………I thought you were coming with the contracts & what work those consultants were SCAMMING from the public purse assisted by you & Owen Arthur !

  21. Linchh

    Tell me why said:

    “Based on my stupid advice by my St. Giles’ teachers regarding when you borrow you have to pay back. My knuckles will never forget, how about yours. (chuckle)”.

    I have heard of the excellent primary school teaching that was provided by St. Giles Boys’ School, but I did that know that the curriculum included lessons in Economics.

    Why didn’t other schools do so. We could have saved ourselves a lot of trouble.

  22. John

    The boulders all the way down to the sea and then on the beach are the giveaways and speak to the landslips that have occurred over time.

    The big slips I think are related to extremes in weather. Not much to do if you live down there except get out quick if the rain seems to be falling more than usual.

    Wise also to keep an eye on rainfall close to the edge of the cliff.

    The Bajans who come from below the cliff are tough people. Their ancestors faced hardships unknown to people who lived in the flatter coral covered areas. Years of effort could be expunged in a few hours.

    … but then, they also had the most beautiful place in Barbados to live.

    The landslip at Boscobelle at the other end of the Scotland District in 1901 was magnitudes bigger.

  23. Tell me Why

    You had me there for a moment………I thought you were coming with the contracts & what work those consultants were SCAMMING from the public purse assisted by you & Owen Arthur !
    …………………………………………………………………………………
    How on earth will on know who had a contract and how long the contracts were for and how much money these people received. By the way, should you not be in possession of those contracts,…and while you are at it, let the public know how much Mr. Henry will be getting and the ‘pig pen fame’ contributor from Brass Tacks who is special advisor for Mr. Lowe. Do let the public know.

    Also, let the public know why $600,000.00 will be given per month to ADM Barbados Ltd to subsidise flour when we get flour cheaper out of Trinidad.
    Let the public know how much money this company will benefit from we the taxpayers.

  24. BFP-
    I cannot believe you are serious in saying:
    “But Thompson and his DLP are guilty as charged of promising to adopt the Ministerial Code of Conduct IMMEDIATLY upon forming a government – and not doing so.”

    Nobody above the age of four could take such words LITERALLY.

    You know perfectly well they did not have legislation ready for enactment the day they took office. So why be absurd?

    You undermine the validity of your perfectly good argument that the Code should be adopted, when you are unreasonable and childish in claiming Thompson LIED because it was not done on the first day.

    Come on, fellers, be rational.

    ************

    BFP says,

    Hi Pandora,

    Respectfully, we have to point out that you have confused Integrity Legislation with the Ministerial Code.

    The Ministerial Code is not legislation. It is a written policy which is simply adopted by the Cabinet at a meeting. All Cabinet Ministers would receive a copy and sign to acknowledge, thus binding themselves to the agreed upon standards of behaviour. It would take about ten minutes. The wording was already published by the DLP during the campaign and they promised – in writing – to adopt it immediately upon forming the government.

    The formal integrity legislation and freedom of information laws are legislation and were promised in 100 days.

    So, David Thompson and the DLP promised to adopt Ministerial Standards immediately upon forming a government. They did not.

    And… because there are no Ministerial Standards in place at this time, there is no rule in place to prohibit Government Ministers from receiving gifts from persons or companies who do business with the government – or otherwise benefit from decisions made by the Minister who received the “gift.”

    As to why Prime Minister Thompson and his DLP government have reneged upon this promise – you’ll have to ask them.

  25. BFP

    BFP says,

    Hi Pandora,

    Respectfully, we have to point out that you have confused Integrity Legislation with the Ministerial Code.

    The Ministerial Code is not legislation. It is a written policy which is simply adopted by the Cabinet at a meeting. All Cabinet Ministers would receive a copy and sign to acknowledge, thus binding themselves to the agreed upon standards of behaviour. It would take about ten minutes. The wording was already published by the DLP during the campaign and they promised – in writing – to adopt it immediately upon forming the government.

    The formal integrity legislation and freedom of information laws are legislation and were promised in 100 days.

    So, David Thompson and the DLP promised to adopt Ministerial Standards immediately upon forming a government. They did not.

    And… because there are no Ministerial Standards in place at this time, there is no rule in place to prohibit Government Ministers from receiving gifts from persons or companies who do business with the government – or otherwise benefit from decisions made by the Minister who received the “gift.”

    As to why Prime Minister Thompson and his DLP government have reneged upon this promise – you’ll have to ask them.

  26. Anon

    Re. House at St. Elizabeth

    My interpretation of the article was that the homeowner was proving the equipment but was paying government and others to correct the problems with the structure. Ithought that the byline was misleading. maybe someone can clarify.

  27. Jerome Hinds

    The Ministerial Code is not legislation. It is a written policy which is simply adopted by the Cabinet at a meeting. All Cabinet Ministers would receive a copy and sign to acknowledge, thus binding themselves to the agreed upon standards of behaviour. It would take about ten minutes. The wording was already published by the DLP during the campaign and they promised – in writing – to adopt it immediately upon forming the government.

    ***********************************

    BFP,

    I told you already that there is Code of Ethics for Cabinet Members already in place .

    All you need to do is to contact the Cabinet office and get it.

    The Ministerial Code will mainly be a broadening of a number of those rules.

    But as it stands no Government Minister can accept or receive gifts or favours without serious sanctions from the Cabinet rules.

    ************

    BFP Says,

    And we already told you that the current Cabinet has not accepted, acknowledged or signed any Ministerial Code of Conduct. You saying that the current Cabinet has secretly adopted whatever the BLP left lying around is a joke. Perhaps you should read the Ministerial Code that you DLP promised to implement immediately upon forming the government and then ask David Thompson why he presented the Ministerial Code and promised to adopt it if it is, as you say, unnecessary!

  28. Donald Duck, Esq

    BFP

    You stated above that:

    “The formal integrity legislation and freedom of information laws are legislation and were promised in 100 days.”

    If you refer to my ealrier note you will see that is not correct since the legislation you speak of was promised immediately. I have noted below the relevant extract from the DLP manifesto.

    Integrity legislation (page 48)

    Immediately introduce integrity legislation requiring

     a declaration of assets by public officials,
     a Code of Conduct for Ministers,
     a new Freedom of Information law,
     amendments to the Defamation laws and
     new constitutional provisions to rationalize the powers of the Prime Minister.

  29. 2 Cents

    I know that in MOST CASES, the honeymoon is going to come to an end. The good intentions and the honest zeal will fade. Temptation will prevail over good judgement and sound character. Honesty will be overcome by greed, compassion will be eclipsed by apathy, comradeship by vindictiveness, industry by complacency. It is human nature and it will happen.

    *********

    BFP says,

    Oh… but Owen Arthur said that Bajan politicians were so honest that they don’t need any integrity legislation…

    And, we’re getting the message that the new Prime Minister and his DLP government are now of the same opinion!

  30. Tony Hall

    I am amazed. I understand that the Gov’t must be kept on its toes to force it from becoming complacent, but having been in power for less than 60 days you guys seem to be expecting miracles. Don’t oppose just because you can. Beauracracy plays a vital role in how legislation goes through. The technocrats play a massive role in drafting legislation. Research has to be done over and over before the final product is delivered. You just cannot avoid it. Six months would be a reasonable time to see real change.

    ************

    BFP says,

    The Ministerial Code is NOT legislation. It exists as it presented to the voters by the DLP – who said IN WRITING that the Cabinet would adopt the Ministerial Code immediately upon forming the government.

    We’re talking 10 minutes for the Cabinet to jointly accept the Ministerial Code, be given individual copies and to sign in acknowledgment of receipt and agreement.

    Ten minutes this very afternoon is all it would take.

    If you have a problem with the citizens demanding that the David Thompson government keep such a simple and easily-fulfilled promise, perhaps you should ask the Prime Minister 1/ Why the promise was made in writing, and 2/ Why he bothered to make the promise at all.

  31. Jerome Hinds

    BFP,

    You are tying up yourself !

    Even some of your ardent supporters are exposing chasms in your argument !

    Time to lay off the DEMS and watch how they demonstrate……TRANSPARENCY..in thought , word & deeds !

    We the DEMS are simply the BEST !

    Thousands of educated Bajans got rid of the WORST BLP gov’t on Jan 15 2008 !

    *************

    BFP Says,

    Why did the DLP say they would immediately adopt the Ministerial Code they presented – and then not do so, Jerome?

    Were they lying? Is there a problem that certain Ministers won’t sign it now that they have been elected?

    Is Thompson unable to make his Cabinet agree to the Ministerial Code the party promised and presented?

    The problem is not with BFP, Jerome.

    And if you think that BFP will “lay off” this issue, you don’t really know us. I guess you thought we were part of the DLP team, when we are in fact part of the Bajan Citizens For Integrity In Public Service team!

  32. Warrior

    BFP,

    Your headline is accurate, when I read the article about Mr. Hartley Henry yesterday I felt deflated.

    Lets be real, I know that the DLP will now have to pay the piper for any favours and assistance it got during and leading up to the last general elections, I know that they are those who lurk in the shadows and will demand much more than we can pay. It happened with the BLP.

    When I read the statement of the PM in his description and defense of Mr. Henry’s position, it was instant replay of Clyde Mascolls defense of Mr. Murrell of Hardwood fame – just a poor black boy – stupseeee.

    Honestly, the DLP are in power because we could do no better, as for me I am bracing myself for the lashes that coming…because they will come whether we want to believe it or not.

    Sad really, because the DLP really has a very extraordinary opportunity to really bring politics to a respectable level.

  33. Jerome Hinds

    And if you think that BFP will “lay off” this issue, you don’t really know us. I guess you thought we were part of the DLP team, when we are in fact part of the Bajan Citizens For Integrity In Public Service team!
    ********************************
    BFP,

    I am a team player….so which ever team you guys playing WID…..I playing WID my team !

    I ” wid David & DEM ” !

    Simply the BEST….team !

  34. Red Lake Lassie

    BFP, leave Jerome Hinds alone. He is not worth your energy. Jerome think that constantly saying “everyting is fine” make it so. He pretends to be a spokeperson for the DLP Cabinet but don’t say why they lied about the Cabinet Code. He Twist and turn as good as any BLP in the last govmnt!

  35. Jerome Hinds

    BFP,

    His Most Excellent PM , David Thompson, is so highly regarded in the International Community of Nations that he is off to the White House for a meeting with the U.S President on 20th March , 2008 .

    This comes less than 3 months in office !

    A PM of immmense Global Stature !

  36. akabozik

    Too bad that Jerome Hinds has degenerated into one of the mindless party cheerleaders that characterized the last BLP government. He used to play a part in discussions and analysis when attacking the BLP, but that’s all gone.

    As BFP points out not much changed when the DLP won the election. Same same only with the party roles reversed. Like BFP I too had hoped for better.

    Time for a new party, BFP?

  37. Yardfowl Hunter

    Jerome Hinds,

    You will always be an idiot.

    Do you have any sense at all?

    Yardfowl Hunter.

  38. Donald Duck, Esq

    Jerome

    Tell the readers the whole story about the PM’s visit to the White House. He is going with the new Prime Ministers of the Bahamas and Belize. You need to ask the question as to if he will be flying on a private jet again!!

  39. Yardfowl Hunter

    What is Hartley Henry’s $$$$$$$$SALARY$$$$$$$$?

    David Thompson needs to stop the lottalongtalk and tell us how much he is paying Hartley Henry.

    Yardfowl Hunter.

    http://www.nationnews.com/story/304721319797125.php

    Thompson defends Henry as his new political advisor

    Published on: 3/12/08.

    HARTLEY HENRY, a top campaign strategist of the Democratic Labour Party (DLP), has been hired as a political advisor to Prime Minister David Thompson.

    Thompson announced this in the House of Assembly yesterday when Opposition Leader Mia Mottley questioned whether constituency councils members would be appointed, hand-picked or elected.

    It was during a supplementary for more than $700 000, part of which will be used to initiate the administration’s constituency councils programme.

    Thompson did not state Henry’s salary. He said he was “handed a contract” on Monday showing the Christ Church East Central candidate for the Barbados Labour Party (Dalton Tyrone Lovell) was paid “$360 a day under a consultancy” by the BLP Goverment.”

    “[He] ain’t write a report yet, hasn’t submitted anything of worth to the ministry, but he was paid to run against the member for Christ Church East Central, and you ask about accountability?

    “The honourable member [for St Michael North-East] wants to talk about the size of the Cabinet. Everybody that is receiving a ministerial salary in Barbados is in the Cabinet, but that BLP Government had 18 plus one,” charged the St John MP.

    “The honourable member for St Michael North-East would have difficulty with me paying Henry, an ordinary young black Barbadian from Ellerton, St George, who went to St George Secondary, for political skills that he brings to bear on advancing the interest of a Government the people elected, but there was a man appointed special envoy for technology and . . . drawing exactly the same salary as a minister, same allowances and emoluments, but he wasn’t in the Cabinet.

    “There were people who feel he deserves it because he was their boss; so he was entitled to draw a ministerial salary as a consultant and special envoy. But the little fella from Ellerton, who started out as a journalist, built up political skills such that he advises six political prime ministers in the Caribbean.” (DS)

  40. 2 Cents

    BFP,

    My mouth dropped open when I read that Hartley Henry story at about 10:30pm last night. I could not believe my eyes. I immediately tossed the paper aside. I saw the references during the day on this blog, but I had no idea.

    I have no objection to Hartley Henry being given a job by the government, but give him a real job and one that is open to public scrutiny in all material respects.

    Anyone could write a report. So the true test of the worth of a consultant on in this case an adviser is not his/her ability to submit a report.

  41. no name

    BFP said
    “And if you think that BFP will “lay off” this issue, you don’t really know us. I guess you thought we were part of the DLP team, when we are in fact part of the Bajan Citizens For Integrity In Public Service team!”

    “Bajan Citizens For Integrity In Public Service team”

    Excellent!

    The “Team” is making Barbados a better place.

    This is one of the things I love most about you all at BFP. You never seem to get frustrated to the point of giving up. This encourages and gives many of us renewed energy.
    Thank you.
    Keep going, we are behind you.

  42. BFP-
    Thank you for clarifying my confusion between the Ministerial Code and Integrity Legislation.

    I really did think they were trunk and tail of the same elephant.

    I was not aware that the adoption of the Ministerial Code only applied to members of Cabinet, rather than to all ministers. If it did apply to ALL MINISTERS, as we would expect, then a motion of Cabinet would not be enough, as members of Cabinet cannot speak for the other ministers in signing a copy of the resolution.

    Perhaps there could be a convocation of all ministers (parliamentary representatives, senators and permanent secretaries serving as ministers) along the same lines, with signed letters of agreement, but it would be unusual, I think.

    A Ministerial Code which applied to ALL ministers would, accordingly, appear to need to go to the whole parliament in the form of legislation to be binding on them. It would not the ten-minute affair you suggest.

    Moreover we are concerned with more than just the ministers. The same terms of integrity of the Ministerial Code should apply to EVERY CIVIL SERVANT or employee of Government, there are so many subsidiary government bodies these days.

    So if I am right that the Ministerial Code is not the 10-minute affair you would have us believe, then I revert to my stand that you are being unwarrantedly precipitate and unfair in calling them LIARS for not having accomplished it yet.

    Am I still confused?

    *******************

    BFP says,

    Hi Pandora,

    The DLP promised all sorts of integrity initiatives during the campaign. Some require legislation, some don’t. Some, like Freedom of Information, will require not only legislation, but an entire structure of regulations, rules and administration put in place to make the legislation and its intent translate into something that works in the real world. Then we will have court challenges etc. from both sides – public and government.

    All of this will work its way out, and fortunately there is much jurisprudence and real world experience and working examples out there because we are about 25 years behind the times. Therefore we don’t have to re-invent the wheel to implement any of these integrity initiatives.

    As to the Ministerial Code being law or requiring assent of Parliament etc., no that is not true. There are many references about this online… ie:

    Ministerial code

    At present the Commonwealth has a ministerial guide to conduct titled A Guide on Key Elements of Ministerial Responsibility but no code of conduct for parliamentarians. While the Hon. John Howard is the first Australian Prime Minister to establish a public ministerial code, academic John Uhr has noted that:

    … given that the document is not a law or regulation and that it does not even have any formal parliamentary authorisation, there is nothing to stop the Prime Minister as author of the document from using his authority to alter or amend it or to interpret it as he sees fit. (John Uhr, ‘Howard’s ministerial code’, Res Publica, Vol. 7, No. 1, 1998.)
    This highlights how ministerial codes in Westminster-type systems are generally controlled by the executive itself rather than the parliament.

    I found that bit on the Australian Ministerial Code here

    You are correct that the Ministerial Code would not just apply to Cabinet, but to all Ministers… presumably as a condition of being a Minister HAD THE GOVERNMENT KEPT ITS PROMISE.

    The DLP published a Ministerial Code on January 4, 2008, saying that if elected, their published code would be effective immediately – as opposed to the other integrity initiatives that were promised within a 100 day time frame.

    The DLP Government was elected 11 days later on January 15th, and to date has not adopted their published Ministerial Code as they said they would.

    Once again… ask Prime Minister Thompson why he didn’t do as he promised.

    Perhaps Martians visited him and told him not to keep his promise. Perhaps he lost the paper that the Ministerial Code was written upon. Perhaps his dog ate it.

    There could be so many reasonable explanations for his lie, ah sorry, failure to keep his promise.

  43. 2 Cents

    Jerome Hinds,

    I say again

    You need to compose yourself in order to maintain any credibility.

  44. John

    Pandora

    All are members of parliament, MP’s, only some of the MP’s are ministers ….. it is a case of many are called but few are chosen.

    Not all Ministers however are MP’s!!

    The ministerial code would thus apply to both MP’s and non MP’s, ie only the chosen.

    It took me a while to get that one too!!

  45. John

    … maybe its the non MP ministers who are causing the trouble over the ministerial code.

  46. BFP-
    I am grateful for your research into Ministerial Codes which are more complex than I had thought.
    (Let’s not get into Freedom of Information and muddy this issue).

    If DLP is on record as having said that “if elected, their Published Code would be effective immediately” perhaps they are ALREADY committed to it, but have just not done the follow-up paperwork which you are seeking?

    Probably naive on my part, but I would rather give a person (even a politician) the benefit of any doubt rather than call him a liar to his face.

    Or more correctly “call him a liar to his BACK” as it is done anonymously.
    +++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

    John –
    Many thanks for advising me about the varied status of ministers. My fourth para must not have been as clear as intended.

    ************

    BFP Says,

    Hi Pandora,

    Successive Barbados governments have found that having real paperwork, passing real laws and declaring standards just makes life in the pig trough soooooo difficult. Much better to let the people assume that the government is “already committed” (as you say) when all reason and convention says that it is the PUBLIC adoption and commitment that is necessary.

    Of course, the Prime Minister once said that his candidates would declare their assets prior to the election but that disappeared with the wind too.

    As did his subsequent promise that he would declare his assets upon election. Perhaps he declared his assets to his mother, who made the list and hid it under her pillow?

  47. no name

    When we talk about implementing guidelines we talk like we are the first country in the world to do this and that we need to start from scratch. It is so difficult and takes such a long time.

    In effect this is far from how things really are. The tried and tested regulations are in place in other countries and have been for ages.

    When successive governments can talk about integrity rules for 35 years with nothing happening up to now, we know what the problem is. Bajans are not stupid.

  48. Tell me Why

    His Most Excellent PM , David Thompson, is so highly regarded in the International Community of Nations that he is off to the White House for a meeting with the U.S President on 20th March , 2008 .
    ………………………………………………………………………………….
    Don’t be caught-up with President Bush inviting the three B’s to Washington, namely, Barbados, Belize and the Bahamas. This is no ordinary, come and socialize with me. This is pure marketing on behalf of the US economy which is showing weakness against the Euro, against the Canadian dollar etc.

    The real truth is America is now scrambling to get these countries to ignore the Economic Partnership Agreement with Europe (EPA) and remain trading with the US dollar. So please, don’t let the Bush Administration blind you that this invitation is based on ‘we being family oriented” language. That is pure ‘White House’ rhetoric.

    By the way, President Bush is in the departure hall of US politics. Next time we will be speaking to President Obama.

  49. Tell me Why

    Help BFP, release my article from the spams

    *********

    BFP says

    Patience, puppy. Soon I will go to pickup the boys and you may have to wait several hours. I hope your nerves can take the wait!

  50. cherry2enpowered

    Am I to understand that no Prime Minister in the history of Barbados have never had a political advisor?.
    Let’s be frank. At least this one was mentioned in the public arena.

  51. BFP

    BFP Says,

    Hi Pandora,

    Successive Barbados governments have found that having real paperwork, passing real laws and declaring standards just makes life in the pig trough soooooo difficult. Much better to let the people assume that the government is “already committed” (as you say) when all reason and convention says that it is the PUBLIC adoption and commitment that is necessary.

    Of course, the Prime Minister once said that his candidates would declare their assets prior to the election but that disappeared with the wind too.

    As did his subsequent promise that he would declare his assets upon election. Perhaps he declared his assets to his mother, who made the list and hid it under her pillow?

  52. Tell me Why

    BFP says

    Patience, puppy.
    ………………………………………………………………………………….
    Nah, I am a old dog wid grey hair and now entering the departure lounge to be wid my maker. (laugh)

  53. Donald Duck, Esq

    We need to focus more on such things as what are the implications for Barbados for oil being at US$111 a barrel today. Questions arise

    1.What affect will this have on inflation?
    2.What will our petrol price increase to? our current petrol price was set when oil was at US$65 a barrel
    3.What impact will it have on visitors coming to barbados. the price will result in air fares going up and also less income in the pockets of many of our visitors
    4.When is our new pm going to deliver his first budget of this term

  54. born and bred

    Please allow me to give my two cents regarding “Hartley Henry”.

    About a year ago when I still believed that the two parties were different, I sent him an e-mail regarding the dilemma that my business was facing.

    BTW My business provides an essential service to certain Barbadians. I can’t go any further without divulging my identity.

    I am yet to receive a response to my impassioned cry for help from the party that was then in opposition.

    Needless to say those formerly in power gave me absolutely no help either.

    To date……… I have received no response or help from any of them. The help I require is not monetary.

    Let me share a secret with all of you.

    Both parties are the same.

  55. Jerome Hinds

    Let me share a secret with all of you.

    Both parties are the same.
    *****************************

    But the DEMS are better…..when it comes to Integrity & Transparency !

    That is the Born & Bred….TRUTH !

  56. BFP-
    Not to labour the point, but the way you are breathing down our PM’s collar on the essential matter of Integrity is going to make him ultra careful- which is great.

    With you (and us, your loyal blog-subjects) as watchdogs he will be scared to go out and buy a new pair of pyjamas.

    He may well find it less hassle to have his team declare assets, and sign the Code, just to stop you nagging like an estranged mother-in-law.

  57. John

    Donald Duck, Esq
    March 13, 2008 at 3:29 pm
    Jerome

    Tell the readers the whole story about the PM’s visit to the White House. He is going with the new Prime Ministers of the Bahamas and Belize. You need to ask the question as to if he will be flying on a private jet again!!
    +++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

    Ok, …. it looks like two jets going soon need to be chartered, one to fly to Washington, the other to Ghana.

    Why not just charter one in keeping with the stated objectives of optimising the utilisation of the country’s scarce resources, ie being thrifty.

    Pass through Ghana and drop of the people who are stuck here, drop off Ras Ikael to straighten out matters, then stop off in Washington, take breakfast with Mr. Bush, and return to Barbados.

    One Jet plane.

    Ras Ikael can then come down with the next set of of Ghanains and Nigerians when the problems get sorted out.

  58. Donald Duck, Esq

    I hear the dlp got nuf fights going on now in the party. There is already 2 factions. I wonder who will win. Any comment Jerome!!!

    **********

    BFP Says

    Interesting comment, DDE.

    We hear the same thing. Some of the troops are rebelling against this integrity legislation talk – saying it is the DLP turn now to feed at the trough. They don’t put it that way, but thats what they mean. We predicted this way back in October of last year.

    Is Thompson leader enough to pull it off and keep the party promises?

    Or will he surrender to the dark side?

  59. The more things change, the more they seem to stay the same…

  60. justice

    This is the difference between a blog and a newspaper. The blog can publish or invent hearsay, the responsible newspaper can’t. I bet that by this afternoon we will have it as a fact on this blog that there is now infighting within the DLP and that if Thompson can’t control the Cabinet, how can he control the country. Incidentally, if there is opposition to his introduction of the Ministerial Code, does that mean that Thompson has lived up to his promise or not? He certainly can’t do it alone.

    ********

    BFP says,

    The Prime Minister AND the DLP as a party promised the Ministerial Code as part of their campaign.

    In Writing.

    If Thompson let that happen and cannot now fulfill the promise it says everything about the party AND the leader.

    If Thompson and the DLP play any games with their integrity promises it will see the birth of a new political party on this island. Some of us are great students of 3rd party politics and before the BLP and DLP brush that off, they should take a look at what really cost Al Gore the presidential election and the last decade of Dutch and Canadian politics as well.

  61. Thistle

    Well said, Justice. What little common sense I have would tell me that the DLP Cabinet members – who are presumably intelligent grown-ups and not little children pitching marbles and fighting for the Big Taw (do children pitch marbles these days?) – would know better than to suffer from the piggies-at-the trough syndrome, knowing full well that that was the main reason why the BLP went through the eddoes. Would they be that stupid as to commit political suicide? Would they wish to be thrown unceremoniously out after only five years? I think not. My “inside” information is that the Integrity Legislation will definitely be passed.

  62. 2 Cents

    Thistle,

    Today in Bridgetown you will be reported by a traffic warden for parking in the same no parking spot that you saw another driver being reported for last week.

    You will light up another one, despite being bombarded with warnings that you will die of cancer.

    You will shout at your son/daughter despite some evidence that this could retard his/her normal development.

    You will call the wife/husband names when you have been told in the past this demoralises her/him

    You will fail another day to get much needed exercise, despite knowing that your brother died of heart disease caused by poor diet and a failure to exercise.

    etc. etc. etc. etc. etc. etc. etc. etc. etc.

    What amazing breed of politician have you incarnated in the Democratic Labour Party of Barbados that they would defy the characteristics of human behaviour starting with Adam and Eve!

  63. Thistle

    I have not “incarnated” anyone, 2 cents – I am not God. If members of the DLP Cabinet revolt against the Integrity Legislation, then they are FOOLS, and they will only have themselves to blame for the outcome. Simple as that. It is just my humble opinion that they are not such fools. Hope I am right.

  64. 2 Cents

    Fair enought Thistle,

    In the fullness of time!

  65. justice

    I agree with you BFP that if the DLP does not “enact” the code, then they would have disappointed us all. But I can’t agree that a third party is the answer. For us to be fooled again? Fool me once…And you claim to have studied the fortunes of third parties in the Caribbean , all of whom promised a brave new world?

  66. Thewhiterabbit

    Well, you all missed the point of the Village Voice article. No amount of ITAL will work when the basic system is flawed. The framers of the US constitution were familiar with the Westminster system, and saw its flaws. That system elects a dictatorship, so whatever they do is law. In the US system the three branches of government are pitted against each other so that no one can ever steamroll the other two. In other words, don’t trust anybody! Barbados, having not yet outgrown its colonial mindset, has maintained the British Westminster system of electing dictatorships, and suffers the inevitable consequence of seeing good men (and women, of course) soon corrupted by power and arrogance.

    Pass ITAL, it is absolutely essential, but then get on with correcting the flaws inherent in the Westminster system that are the real causes of the problem. Stop hacking at the branches of evil and get to chopping at the roots! Good words from another American!

    ***********

    BFP say

    Hi TWR,

    You make some good points, but we believe that the Westminster system need not be so flawed – would not be so flawed – if the intents were respected by Government and the people. For instance, appointing a former Chief Justice and Cabinet Minister as our Chief Justice totally undermined the independence of the office.

  67. Warrior

    BFP Says
    Some of the troops are rebelling against this integrity legislation talk – saying it is the DLP turn now to feed at the trough.
    Is Thompson leader enough to pull it off and keep the party promises? Or will he surrender to the dark side?
    +++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++
    Of course he will not surrender to the dark side, we is more than dem, we put them deh and we can tek them out agen.

    That is why we as citizens of this country must remain vigilant, any thing they do that is not right expose them right away, don’t wait until ten and fifteen years when we down to ground zero. We have a role to play too. I am not in love with no political party or leader, in the end its what is good for country and citizen, if they can’t do it then show them the whipping post that the BLP saw.

    We can no longer be comfortable being passive, I would hope we learnt a good lesson from the previous thieves.

  68. Jerome Hinds

    BFP say

    Hi TWR,

    You make some good points, but we believe that the Westminster system need not be so flawed – would not be so flawed – if the intents were respected by Government and the people. For instance, appointing a former Chief Justice and Cabinet Minister as our Chief Justice totally undermined the independence of the office.
    ***************************************

    BFP,

    A clear indication that you are beginning to take the MOTE out of your eyes……and recognise that the Owen Arthur BLP was a very REPUGNANT administration !

    It would take David Thompson’s ADMINISTRATION 50 YEARS to clean up the MESS !

    **************

    BFP says,

    Jerome old friend, what shall we do with you? Now you are falsely implying that we at BFP somehow never recognised that Owen $ ARthur and the BLP ran a “repugnant administration”. Such nonsense you have been spouting since your party achieved victory – in good measure through its promises of integrity made during the campaign and because BFP and other Bajan blogs exposed the BLP rot.

    And now you have the idiocy to say that BFP are finally waking up.

    You ungrateful, truth-twisting DLP idiot. You have become brain-dead since your DLP tasted the trough.

    Yes, it will take time for the DLP to clean up the mess, but that in no way excuses YOUR DLP Prime Minister from 1/ Reneging on his promise to adopt his Ministerial Code upon being elected, AND 2/ YOUR DLP Prime Minister’s disgusting lack of transparency surrounding his use of corporate jets and the potential conflicts of interest.

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