Professor Henry Fraser targets conspirators in government and business
“Places like Cove Bay must be protected from concrete, cranes and capitalist conspirators, even if we have to lie in front of the bulldozers”.
Sam Lord’s Castle “betrayed… plundered and pillaged… destroyed by a series of acts of piracy on land”.
Professor Henry Fraser talks with Barbados Today Fight Back!
Strong words indeed from one of the academic establishment types, but will Professor Fraser really do it?
Even if he does sit down in front of the construction machines, will he have any company? How old will his friends be? Will his students join him?
The kind of social activism that Henry Fraser is talking about – peaceful but physical acts of defiance against traitorous political and business elites – hasn’t been seen in Barbados for a long, long time. The garbage on the roadside and couldn’t-care-less about over-development attitudes of the under 40 crowd don’t provide much hope for this island’s future.
Look at what the West Coast became as we all watched it happen and that includes yours truly. It didn’t matter whether the DLP or BLP was in government: there was no planning for green space or public access to the beaches. Our greedy politicians and business people like Owen Arthur, the Williams brothers and (insert dozens more names here) conspired to sell off our natural heritage, block off our beaches and spoil our most beautiful views – and we let them do it.
“Why do we continue to allow the elites to pave over our little piece of paradise? I think that’s simple…
No rules or disclosure about election financing means that developers pay big money to the political class. Owen Arthur, David Thompson and Freundel Stuart made decisions against our national interests because they were paid to.”
The politicians we elected for saying fine things about preserving our natural heritage betrayed us for money at every opportunity.
In the May 2003 election Owen Arthur’s cry was “Keep the best of Barbados for Bajans”. Shortly thereafter the government came out in favour of
developing destroying Cove Bay. Barbados Tourism Investment said this on their website:
“Cove Bay is a delightful address overlooking the Atlantic ocean to the north of the island. It will provide the investor with one of few remaining opportunities for ocean front residential development, which in itself creates a unique selling point for the project. The site offers several options for other well chosen complementary uses which will enhance the residences by providing services and amenities and possible income opportunities for purchasers.”
The DLP are no better. With all their 2007 campaign talk about stopping the concreting of Barbados and preserving the environment, the first thing they did after gaining power was to remove the protection from the Graeme Hall wetlands so Thompson’s developer friends like Leroy Parris could build on the watershed.
As BFP’s Cliverton once said:
“The DLP promised in writing in their “Pathways to Progress” policy booklet that they would require a 2/3 free vote in Parliament to change agricultural land to allow development.
That’s the promise that Thompson and the DLP put in writing and it’s a promise that they broke with their first piece of legislation that killed the Graeme Hall National Park, and since then in many other cases.
What makes these betrayals possible?
Why do we continue to allow the elites to pave over our little piece of paradise? I think that’s simple…
No rules or disclosure about election financing means that developers pay big money to the political class. Owen Arthur, David Thompson and Freundel Stuart made decisions against our national interests because they were paid to.
It’s all secret and it’s all legal because that’s the way the business and political elites like it. That’s why the DLP lied about Integrity Legislation and Freedom of Information.
The DLP and BLP keep the voters quiet by passing out trinkets, biscuits and corned beef and staging some of the best free music festivals anywhere.
I don’t think that Henry Fraser will sit down in front of any bulldozer – and if by chance he does, I don’t think he’ll have many folks beside him. Nobody wants to lose that tinned beef, crackers and concerts.
When the economy improves enough, the developers will throw some money at whatever party is in power – and those bulldozers will roll in unopposed.
That is the sad truth. I know BFP has been optimistic about citizen awakening before (See Barbados Citizens taking action against development-at-any-cost business and political elites) but I don’t see it.
When those bulldozers roll at Cove Bay, the politicians will have been paid off and so will the voters. I hope Henry Fraser will be there with 500 fellow citizens and the international news media in attendance – but I don’t believe that will happen.
Without Integrity Legislation, Freedom of Information and Election Financing Reform, Cove Bay is a done deal.