Which Barbados Journalists Have Received Gifts and Trips From Communist China?

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Barbadian Journalists Should Declare Their Junkets And Gifts Whenever They Write An Article About China Or Taiwan

There was a scandal in automotive journalism a few years back when it was discovered that supposedly independent reviewers of automobiles had long been receiving gifts and benefits from automotive manufacturers. While there were at the time no hard rules about where the lines should be drawn, it was a certainty that when an automotive reviewer was found to be “test driving” a new Ford for two years straight that he had stepped over the line. As I recall, his wife was permanently “test driving” a new Mustang too!

Similarly, when Chevrolet flew New York City journalists and their wives and children to Hawaii for a two week “test drive” of a new model in the middle of a brutal NYC winter, one could naturally assume that it would be difficult for the journalists to pan the product. Years later, journalistic integrity by auto reviewers is still a hot topic. (one story here)

Similarly, legitimate travel journalists are not allowed to accept free junkets and any editor who wants to retain their job in the industry had better be asking for the receipts that should accompany a travel review. Any exceptions are declared.

As the end-users of the news media become more savvy, the oldstream Barbados media will be called upon to pay more attention to issues of journalistic transparency, accountability and ethical reporting…

… and the oldstream media had better respond or they will make a mockery of themselves.

Barbadian Journalists On A Free Junket To China

According to the Barbados Advocate, “a delegation of Barbadian journalists who are on a familiarisation tour in China ahead of an official visit of the Prime Minister, David Thompson next month…”

Leading the delegation of journalists, again according to the Barbados Advocate, is “Principal Political Advisor to the Prime Minister, Hartley Henry…” (Barbados Advocate story here)

I am not foolish enough to believe that Barbadian journalists or their organisations are paying for this trip to China. Nor do I believe that the government of Barbados paid for our journalists to go to China – although even if they did it should be declared to readers.

Nope, I believe that the government of Communist China paid for the trip and that it is all part of their massive effort to purchase the loyalty of smaller governments and media organisations. To buy silence and blindness about China’s human rights violations.

It was no coincidence that each year on the June 4th anniversary of the Tiananmen Square Massacre the Barbados newspapers are always full of positive stories about China. As we said in our article Barbados Media Forgets Anniversary – China’s Tiananmen Square Massacre

“The (June 4th) Barbados Advocate article fairly gushes with celebration over the ongoing Communist Chinese “grants”, construction funds, scholarships and training programmes that Barbados has received over the years. This time, the Communists are giving us another 2 million dollars for some unspecified purpose…. all for purely altruistic, unselfish reasons, of course.

So we find it convenient to not mention the anniversary of the Chinese Communist massacre of teenagers on the same weekend as we grovel for another big cheque and some other handouts.

Probably just a coincidence that the Chinese arrived with a cheque on the anniversary.”

Barbados Citizens Deserve To Know Which Journalists Received Chinese Gifts & Travel

It is all about transparency. When a financial journalist reports on a company in which he owns stock, he declares his holdings so the public can judge for themselves.

When a Barbados journalist writes about China or Taiwan, the readers should be made aware of any potential conflicts of interest by the journalist and that includes free travel and gifts from the People’s Republic of China. Travel and gifts should be declared up front and printed with the journalist’s article in the news media.

Let us hear what journalists Carl Moore, David Ellis, Ricky Singh, CBC’s Head of News Richard Cox, Nation News associate editor Eric Smith and Barbados Advocate journalist Nicholas Cox have to say about free junkets to China and whether the oldstream media should be making their readers and viewers aware of the gifts and benefits that they and their comrades receive from the Communist Chinese.


Filed under Barbados, China, Corruption, Ethics, Freedom Of The Press, Human Rights, News Media

20 responses to “Which Barbados Journalists Have Received Gifts and Trips From Communist China?

  1. Nevermind pretzels

    Good points BFP. Good article.

  2. reality check

    You can safely assume that these journalists will be squired around to all the places the government of China chooses to show them.

    Their objectivity will be zero.

    You can’t really describe them as journalists but rather tourism and chinese government advocates, bought and paid for.

    This is the nature of the relationship and yes these “journalists”? will feel obligated to inform the local rags of their wonderful trip.

  3. So Long

    Man you could combine the two articles and have one set of comments you know..

  4. Sean Farrell is CBC’s rep, just verified today

  5. Michael

    Isn’t Peter Wickham there as well???

    Since WHEN was he a “journalist”???

  6. Checkin-out

    I hold no brief for China as I consider that its human rights record leaves a lot to be desired. However, there are several other countries that, when you strip away the veneer of democracy and upholding human rights which their Journalists make certain we are told about, have human rights lapses that approach and even surpass those of China.

    While it is true that China is probably trying to buy favourable comments from these Journalists you do not seem to offer the requisite balance in your reporting, Such visits by Journalists to exotic places at the invitation of their Governments is not new and I would be surprised if the Journalists you mentioned, with perhaps one or two exceptions, could be bought by a mere trip to China, however expensive it is.

    Has’nt US Government agencies in the past sponsored visits to Washington and other parts of the US by Barbadian Journalists? Is’nt it an ongoing scandal that the Bush administration has been secretly paying out Journalists to report positively on their wars. Have’nt most of the retired Generals who were seen as objective, expert FOX and CNN commentators on the Iraq and other Wars, torture etc., now been exposed as profiting from goodies provided by the US Military Industrial Complex?

    Re. this visit, BFP appears to be regurgitating the talking points of the American hegemon as usual, which leaves one to wonder about the real objectives of this blog and who is supporting it financially.

    I seem to recall that the Barbados Government was out of favour with the American administration re. comments and principled actions related to “Ship Rider”, giving American torturers a free pass at the International Court of Justice, etc. What are BFP’s views on this? What are BFP’s views on the human rights of the over 1 million civilians killed in Iraq as a result of the US invasion? What are BFP’s views on the Palestine situation or the Lebanon situation where Israel appears to be poised for another war and where the human rights of those oppressed peoples have been trampled exponentially more as compared to the victims of Tianamen Square?

    I have yet to see BFP’s take on matters such as these where the face of the Ugly American can clearly be seen.


    BFP says

    Hello Checkin-out,

    First, you have to remember that BFP is not one monolithic entity… we’re six people – four guys, two women – and have an age differential of 49 years between our youngest and oldest staff members. (whew!) Our skin colours range from very dark to almost pink.There is a common love for Barbados and a common cause for ITAL that brings us together, but in many other areas we don’t see eye to eye.

    If you find our concern for human rights in China to be American Hegimony, well then thank god for the Americans. If you search our blog you will also find articles on modern slavery in Africa, the middle east and asia.

    Like everyone we have our own interests and we can’t possibly cover everyone’s desires.

    If you feel like writing, send us in an article at barbadosfreepress@yahoo.com and if it suits our blog we’ll publish it. We’ve published many articles from readers and some we don’t agree with but there you go.

    That’s the best we can offer.


  7. So Long

    Seems like Dasvid Ellis is the PM’s boy for the time being and of course Richard Cox (Lord come fa ya world)

  8. So Long

    China’s Tiananmen Square … the way how that tank commander turned and avoided the brazen probably drunk student. In any other part of the world he would have been dead… squashed.

    I appreciate that word press is out of California USA dude, and it would be inappropriate (I am sure you suffer) for you to use their facilities in a campaign to criticise/expose the US Government, its people and its geopolitical allies. So no anti-American articles… you should be officially welcomed to the real world of selective journalism.

    Thanks tho for allowing comments like Checkin-out’s and of course yours truly. Sad tho


    BFP says

    Hi So Long,

    As we said, write us up an article with your view and we’ll run it. Seeing as we are approaching two million visitors a year, somebody might see it.

    As for the “drunk student”… he was neither drunk nor a student.

    Some say his name is Wang Weilin and is alive but hiding either on the mainland or in Taiwan. Numerous rumours have sprung up as to the man’s identity and current whereabouts, but none are backed by hard evidence. An eyewitness account by the photog who took the photo says he was arrested on the spot.

    From wiki…

    There are several conflicting stories about what happened to him after the demonstration. In a speech to the President’s Club in 1999, Bruce Herschensohn — former deputy special assistant to President of the United States Richard Nixon — reported that he was executed 14 days later; other sources say he was killed by firing squad a few months after the Tiananmen Square protests. In Red China Blues: My Long March from Mao to Now, Jan Wong writes that the man is still alive and is hiding in mainland China.

    An eyewitness account of the event published in October 2005 by Charlie Cole, a contract photographer for Newsweek magazine at the time, states that the man was arrested on the spot by the Public Security Bureau.

    The People’s Republic of China government made few statements about the incident or the people involved. In a 1990 interview with Barbara Walters, then-CCP General Secretary Jiang Zemin was asked what became of the man. Jiang replied “I think never killed”

    …. Whatever story about his fate, he was a very brave man.

    Now… as to your statement “In any other part of the world he would have been dead… squashed.”

    That is nonsense in the context of the photos of the students who were squashed by tanks in he square on the night of the massacre. When local troops refused to do it, they brought in a squad from outside of Bejing. You should take the time to examine the many photos that are on the net before you make such a blanket defense of a ruthless and bloody dictatorship.

  9. So Long

    Osama Bin L died of a chronic illness a couple years after the US invaded Afghanistan. He was about 44 at the time. Yet in the Western media he is alive and well and still very much in control… hmmm!

    I am sure that with a little digging I will find some images on this student massacre but I do remember in my time at Cave Hill there was a cross campus demonstration amounts the students and there was a crack down in both Barbados and Trinidad that so harsh that it resulted in the death of the Student body head in Trinidad. Recently, about seven years ago the students at Cave Hill demonstrated again and the show of force was so extreme that one would think that we were about to be invaded by a international subversive elements (I hate the ‘T’ word). It seems to me that even in little old Bim, Government does not tolerate mass descent from its tertiary population.
    By the way I was a lot more comfortable interfacing with the Chinese military than the NYPD.

  10. nonsense

    I’m with you on China but just to turn the issue around, do you honestly believe that any foreign journalists come to Barbados and pay their own way ? Or buy their own rum to take home ? They are all brought over here by the BTA/ BHTA/ Hotels/ Rum brands etc. and pay not a cent towards it. They don’t guarantee positive (or indeed any) coverage but mostly write good articles and I know at least 10 major, and some very serious, publications which never list sponsors. It’s the way these things work. The BBC recently went to China on a state sponsored trip and slated it so it’s not just about who brings you over – nobody’s forcing anyone to write anything when they get home, you just won’t be asked back. For me, I don’t mind paid junkets for journalists to anywhere (and most of the publicity Barbados gets in the UK is done this way so be careful what you criticise or we economy gone) and I don’t mind not knowing who paid for what as long as those journalists develop some sort backbone when they come home and write.

  11. Dr. Blogg

    Stupid clueless BFP, like a shrieking woman in permanent menopause.

    What a load of rubbish. You are NOT six people. You are one person of a white-ish colour.

    I am going to prescribe PROZAC for you.


    BFP says,

    Oh! Please Sir…

    Please think of your family before you get into the ESAF rum and write this foul piece against women and people of other races.

    Perhaps it is the rum that causes this racial prejudice against folks with lighter skin? Remember “Negrocrat” and “Oreo” and “Caucasian” used as racial slurs members of the last BLP government?

    Just be careful of the ESAF rum, Sir… or you could end up looking like this.

  12. no name

    nonsense said “I don’t mind not knowing who paid for what as long as those journalists develop some sort backbone when they come home and write.”,


    we know the journalists had no backbone when they left here, you think they will find it over and away to bring back with them? I doubt.

  13. nonsense

    Fair point no name – it’s less to do with giving people free trips or even declaring them and more to do with personal professionalism and ethics. Seriously lacking round bout ‘hey.

  14. no name

    Dr. Blogg must be new to around here. Perhaps he better prescribe something for schizophrenia.

    Good laugh though!


    BFP says

    “Dr. Blogg” is the same BFPE and BLP crew who threatened Adrian Loveridge and Ian Bourne with death etc etc,. They leave many comments per day and try to get their foulness posted here, but we thought that one was worthy of publication. We let the odd one through to remind everyone about what these people are like and that they are still around. They want their power back and the danger for the DLP is that if the DLP doesn’t keep its promises – those foul folks will be back in power.

    … Unless, of course, the Barbados Integrity Party gets off the ground.

  15. So Long

    I like Peoples Integrity Government better. PIG lol

  16. I just wanna say that BFP is not spouting Hot Air, re: suspected Business Authority/IT author & spammer. I still get nonsense which I refuse to let vent as it would lend credence to evil.

  17. the mole

    I have done my digging and here are the names
    sean farrell, ryan gilkes, janelle riley, kaymar jordan, chris gollop, peter wickham and hartley henry and angela henry
    they went flying all over the place in the chinese government cars treated like diplomats with escort and all.
    but my question is why did only five of them come back this weekend?
    where were wickham and the henries?
    makes you say hmmmmmm……
    more to come as information comes to hand.
    oh did they declare thier gifts to customs
    heard they get alot…

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