Monthly Archives: August 2008

Irony Defined: Barbados Prime Minister Thompson In Cuba For Caribbean Broadcasting Union Meeting – Keeping His Mouth Shut About Jailed Cuban Journalists

Prime Minister David Thompson

Prime Minister David Thompson

Barbados Government Confers Legitimacy Upon The Cuban Government & News Media While Ignoring Freedom Of The Press & Abused Journalists

The Cuban News Agency released a story that Barbados Prime Minister David Thompson is in Cuba for a meeting of the Caribbean Broadcasting Union. CBU is apparently a non-governmental organisation based in Barbados and does not have an operating website that we could find. A Cuban-sourced story in Caribbean News Net says this about the CBU meeting…

HAVANA, Cuba (ACN): Havana is hosting the 39th General Assembly of the Caribbean Broadcasting Union (CBU) beginning Tuesday.

The organization, of which Cuba is a member country, groups radio and TV entities in the Caribbean region. The CBU is a non-governmental organization based in Barbados which supports and promotes high quality work of radio and TV private or public entities.

The Havana meeting will focus on common interests of all 23 CBU member countries, including the need for personnel training and entity performance.

Participants will also assess the treatment given by TV and radio stations to subjects such as HIV AIDS and the ongoing campaign against the disease.

The Cuban Radio and Television Institute (ICRT), as the host to the event, has organized a program, which includes a visit by participants to the Cuban HIV-AIDS National Prevention Center, a Havana neighborhood where they will exchange with community members, and a gala in the recently refurbished Bertolt Brecht Theater.

The CBU General Assembly will hold working sessions until next Saturday at the Havana-based Melia Cohiba Hotel. Many countries with the CBU are also members of the Association of Caribbean States (ACS), while 18 of them are part of the Caribbean Community (CARICOM).

Another Place To Spend Your Tax Dollars – But Is It Worth It?

We found some entries in Wikipedia that indicate the production work of the CBU was taken over by the Caribbean Media Corporation, and that the Government of Barbados is or was supporting the Caribbean Media Corporation with your tax dollars and resources.

Interesting – I did not know that.

Closer examination shows that both the CBU and the Caribbean Media Corporation appear to be tools in the attempt to advance CARICOM unity.

Yup… interesting what a few quick online searches will reveal.

Cuba Jails Arrests, Beats, Jails AIDS Activist

Yup… check out the story of Yuri Martinez Sanchez at The Real Cuba. I bet his name won’t be mentioned at the CBU Havana conference by anyone: including our Prime Minister.

Remembering Abused Cuban Journalists

We are disappointed that Prime Minister Thompson will be providing legitimacy to the Cuban news media and the despotic Cuban government without publicly mentioning the plight of jailed reporters, librarians and others who dare to believe in Freedom of the Press in that police state.

After former Prime Minister Owen Arthur was photographed with his arm around Fidel Castro and actually holding hands like lovers with the bearded despot, we had hoped for better from our new Prime Minister, David Thompson.

Oh well… we’re getting used to things being the same old, same old ’bout hey.

Further Reading

ACN – Cuban News Agency: Barbados Prime Minister in Cuba For CBU Meeting

Caribbean Net News: Caribbean Broadcasting Union Meets In Havana

Wikipedia: Caribbean Broadcasting Union

Wikipedia: Caribbean Media Corporation

The Real Cuba: Beaten Cuban Journalists & Librarians

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9 Comments

Filed under Barbados, Cuba, Freedom Of The Press, Human Rights

Obama Assassination Plot In Denver – White Supremacist Link

“They’re Just Good ‘Ol Boys – Never Meanin No Harm”

Any candidate for the Presidency of the the United States of America faces threats that range from wackos without the means to serious people who have the resources and don’t care if they get caught or die as long as their mission is completed.

Where do the plotters in Denver come in? The story is still developing.

Maybe the world will eventually know the truth about suspects Tharim Robert Gartrell, Nathan Johnson and Shawn Robert Adolf, or maybe it won’t… but in my opinion Barack Obama is likely to face more credible threats than any other Presidential candidate in the last century.

Here are a few links, but the story is developing rapidly so you should check with other sources to see what is happening…

Rocky Mountain News: US Attorney Downplays Possible Plot To Kill Obama

CBS4 – Plot to Kill Obama: Shoot From High Vantage Point

53 Comments

Filed under Barack Obama, Barbados, Crime & Law, Culture & Race Issues, FBI, Police, Race

Barbados Queen Elizabeth Hospital – Refurbish or Tear It Down?

Barbados Queen Elizabeth Hospital Washroom

Barbados Queen Elizabeth Hospital Washroom

The government appears to be in two minds about the Hospital.

Should we refurbish or should we build new?

Refurbishment sounds cheaper and quicker and Barbadians have grown weary of big expensive projects, with escalating costs, strong whiffs of corruption and long delays.

But the problem with refurbishing an old hospital, making it compliant with modern safety standards and ready for new equipment is that it can be very expensive. I understand that the basement would require substantial work to allow the installation of new heavy medical equipment. I understand that in the face of a hurricane the existing hospital is poorly located, but I am no expert. Refurbishing can be so expensive that it may make economic sense to build a new one. Refurbishing costs of $400-500m have been bandied around while a new hospital would probably cost $600-700m.

It is also hard to refurbish a hospital with patients in it. I have asthma like many Barbadians. Imagine being in a hospital which is a construction site with an asthmatic attack? We would have to have a transition plan that may add further to the costs.

All this sounds like an argument for new but I recognize that the budgetary seduction of a new hospital financed by the private sector using a commitment from the government’s annual budget (Public Finance Iniatives like BOLT) may be clouding good judgement of the hospital “consultants”. That said, this government is so keen to undo everything the last government did (for good or ill) that as the last government favoured a new hospital, they are probably inclined to prefer refurbishment at whatever cost. Most countries have gone the route of new versus refurbishment. I recall a figure of 40 new hospitals in the UK over the past 20 years using BOLT.

I also think – an excellent point first raised on these pages by Georgie Porgie, who I do not normally agree with – that the issue is not just about the physical infrastructure but also the organization of treatment in Barbados and management of the clinics and hospitals. The sad case of Leslie Barrow who could not get to the hospital in time because there were no ambulances is one aspect of this. Should we upgrade our clinics first, allow them to take some strain off the hospital, and then refurbish? This is partly about education as Bajans think of the hospital as the place to go.

Moreover, many of the expensive spaces in the hospital are taken up by people who are not ill (anymore), but have no where else to go. Do we need to start with a less expensive “ly-ing in” place or consider alternative “treatment” for such people. It would be far cheaper to pay rent and for a part-time nurse than to keep a well person in a hospital bed needed for emergencies.

What do Barbadians think? New, old or re-organisation?

The above article was submitted by a BFP reader… who didn’t say whether or not to publish their name in credit. Let us know at barbadosfreepress@yahoo.com

Further Reading

BFP: Your Child Is Sick: Welcome To Barbados Queen Elizabeth Hospital

90 Comments

Filed under Barbados, Health

Nation News “Breaks” Blackwater Barbados Story A Year After Barbados Underground Blog

Eleven months ago, our friend David at Barbados Underground blog wrote about the infamous US Mercenary Company Blackwater having a Barbados connection.

The reporters at the Nation News must have seen that BU story and the Guardian UK story that it referenced. They simply must have. Why didn’t they write about it? Perhaps the last BLP government wouldn’t permit it.

Now, the Nation News is “breaking” a story that is almost a year old, and that, frankly, was better covered by Barbados Underground.

Just another day of “professional” journalism at the Nation News!

Further Reading

Barbados Underground: Nation Newspaper Breaks Blackwater Story Almost Eleven Months After Original Story

16 Comments

Filed under Barbados, Freedom Of The Press, Military

Whaloss! Barbados Land At BDS$543 Per Square Foot!

At first I thought it must be a misprint!

‘Caribbee Beach Hotel and land, Hastings, Christ Church’.

‘Offering you the chance to own a piece of prime South Coast beachfront property in Barbados’
‘Caribbee Hotel and adjoining land are being sold as commercial property’.
‘Approximately 46,000 sq. ft.
$25,000,000

Barbados Advocate Saturday 23rd August 2008, page 25.

So I then went to the website of the real estate agent mentioned.

Sure enough, the same description – Sale Price $12,500,000 with underneath ‘rates are quoted in U.S. dollars’

BDS$543 per square foot.

This is perhaps a classic example of why we have lost 29 hotels over the past fifteen years.

Of course, I could not blame the owners. They see the opportunity of realising a massive profit where some buyers appear to be willing (and able) to pay almost any price.

But where is our long term tourism future heading?

Adrian Loveridge

BFP Comments…

BDS$543 per square foot sure puts a new perspective on the lands sold by the Board of Directors of the Kingsland Corporation for 16 cents a square foot!

See: Barbados Land Sold At 16 Cents Per Square Foot! Keltruth Blog Exposes Land Fraud In Barbados

16 Comments

Filed under Barbados, Barbados Tourism, Offshore Investments, Real Estate

Sunday Morning and The Power And Emotion Of Bajan Photography

Sunday morning. The boys are playing and the air smells fresh as I sip the last of my Jamaican Blue Mountain coffee and watch the rain move across the island. The best wife in the world has just asked what I want for breakfast and given me a little wink and a smile.

Yes, it always is a good idea to come home early on a Saturday night. No gallivanting after work, just straight home to my woman and the little ones is the best policy. Works every time! 😉

Sunday morning, cruising the web and I came across Ian Bourne’s blog where I found a marvelous article on a Barbados photography show that moved my soul.

Thank you Ian, for covering some of the important things in life that the regular news media and the rest of us miss.

Now… how to squeeze Robert to bring me more of this coffee?

Marcus on a Sunday morn…

Bajan Reporter: Barbadians exposed to Photography matching Old Masters’ paintings at Lancaster Gallery

Comments Off on Sunday Morning and The Power And Emotion Of Bajan Photography

Filed under Art, Barbados

Olympics President Jacques Rogge Rips Usain Bolt For His Victory Celebration – Ignores China’s Human Rights Violations, Lies, Murders and Forced Abortions

IOC President Ignores True Symbolism Of China Olympics

IOC President Ignores True Symbolism Of China Olympics

“Jacques Rogge is so bought, so compromised, the president of the IOC doesn’t have the courage to criticize China for telling a decade of lies to land itself these Olympic Games.

All the promises made to get these Games — on Tibet, Darfur, pollution, worker safety, freedom of expression, dissident rights — turned out to be phony, perhaps as phony as the Chinese gymnasts’ birthdates Rogge was way too slow to investigate.

One of the most powerful men in sports turned the world away from his complicity. Instead, he has flexed his muscles by unloading on a powerless sprinter from a small island nation.

Rogge’s ripping of Usain Bolt’s supposed showboating in two of the most electrifying gold-medal performances of these Games has to be one of the most ill-timed and gutless acts in the modern history of the Olympics…”

… continue reading Dan Wetzel of Yahoo! Sports shredding and dicing IOC bully Jacques Rogge link here.

A Pity That IOC’s Jacques Rogge Is Blind To The Communist Despots Of China

When the fastest human in the world gave a little “take that!” to the also-rans so far behind him, that was as fine a demonstration of the competitive spirit of the Olympics as I’ve seen in a long time.

In these days where western schools are doing everything to make sure that no child’s “feelings” are hurt by losing a competition or failing an exam, where children are taught that being number one is something to be hidden, it is good to see the raw human spirit of competition and victory rise as it did in Usain Bolt.

God made Usain Bolt fast – but it took years of hard work and the desire to WIN for the man to be what he is… the fastest runner the world has ever seen.

Jacques Rogge lives a life that is far removed from reality. His remarks against one of the most outstanding athletes in the world illustrate all that is wrong with the Olympics.

In the coming years, the China Olympics will be remembered for two things: the super-human performances of Usain Bolt and a handful of other athletes… and how the Olympic organisation ignored Communist China’s human rights violations, lies, murders and forced abortions.

Because for the IOC, it is all about control of the show and money. If this Olympics has taught us anything, it is that the IOC and China’s despots have much in common. They have to keep the athletes in check because both China’s and the IOC’s corrupted vision of what the Olympics should be falls apart the moment that the athletes open their mouths or in the case of Usain Bolt, show what one individual can accomplish.

Usain Bolt can do ONE THING To Slap Jacques Rogge, the IOC and Communist China’s despots right in the face…

… Come home and under controlled conditions, smash his own Olympic record!

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Filed under Barbados, Jamaica, Olympics, Sports