Monthly Archives: September 2014

Feelgood start to your day: Bajan teacher meets American guy walking on beach…

Katy Gash Barbados

Katy and Eric Gash live in Hendersonville, North Carolina

Every morning Google Alerts sends us the latest news having anything to do with Barbados, and today the first story just made me smile. A good start to the day, so I thought I’d share it with you…

I was born and raised in the beautiful eastern Caribbean island of Barbados, where instead of having winter, spring, summer and fall, we have just two seasons — hurricane season and dry season. My island is a mere 21 miles long by 14 miles wide, so everyone lives right by the sea. Growing up, we would walk to the beach every weekend, and along the way pick local fruits such as ackees and dunks and tamarinds. I had an amazing childhood!

… continue reading Got A Minute? with Katy Gash

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Filed under Barbados, People

Harlequin’s Merricks Resort “a rotting garbage dump – a liability not an asset”

Merricks Barbados Harlequin Bankruptcy 14Merricks Barbados Harlequin Bankruptcy 12

Why didn’t Barbados obtain completion guarantees backed with performance deposits and bonds?

Our political class, along with Harlequin and other developers, left Bajans holding the bag!

by Old Cutter

What a mess we have with abandoned and “on hold” construction sites and failed projects throughout this country. There is a reason for this and it is not “economic slowdowns” or “unforeseen circumstances”.

“We have these numerous failed project disasters littering our coasts because our DLP and BLP governments allowed unfettered development of our beautiful island by almost anyone that showed up.”

Politicians’ offshore accounts are fat and happy

Our elected representatives stuffed bags of cash into offshore accounts of their “consulting” companies but never acted to protect Barbados from shaky developers.

Our political class never imposed standard contract conditions like performance guarantees and deposits. The big developers hired DLP and BLP friends and family as ‘consultants’ in exchange for building permissions.

“Everybody knows how this place works, and why the political class never voted for Integrity Legislation or assets declarations since Bajan independence almost 50 years ago.”

Harlequin Resorts is just one more failed developer, but they fell in a big way and are worth looking at closely…

As the broader Harlequin Resorts debacle carries on in the courts we see Harlequin suing accountants Wilkins Kennedy and WK countering with accusations of their own, and many other court battles in various stages.

Somewhere in all of that there is a book figure for the value of Harlequin’s assets, including the abandoned Merricks Resort site in Barbados.

Whatever that book figure is for Merricks Resort, a visit to the abandoned construction site reveals a rotting garbage dump that is undoubtedly far less of an asset due to the demolition and environmental cleanup that would be necessary prior to any new activity. Barbados Free Press covered this story a year and a half ago, and the deterioration is easy to see when we compare the photos then and now. Continue reading

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Filed under Barbados, Corruption, Economy, Offshore Investments, Political Corruption, Politics & Corruption

Barbados welcomes Chinese money with no cultural or sovereignty concerns

China Barbados Relations Politics

Governor General Sir Elliott Belgrave, China’s Ambassador to Barbados… and a glass of the good stuff!

Have you noticed how the pro-Bajan culture supporters go silent when China arrives?

“Next year, Ambassador Ke noted, through the diligent efforts made by the two sides, some of the major projects supported by Chinese grants or loans will begin to take shape.”

… Barbados Advocate “Cooperation continues

The same folks in government, politics and finance who warned against British colonisation and American hegemony seem to have no problem with Chinese money pushing Chinese culture and the Communist version of history in Barbados.

Hey… I’m just saying!

Am I wrong?

Talk ya talk…

Cliverton

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Barbados Tourism businesses must get serious about sponsorships!

“2013 ended with the lowest number of stay over visitors for 11 consecutive years. We must do something!”

Adrian Loveridge - tourism expert, hotel owner

Adrian Loveridge – tourism expert, hotel owner

When you are working with miniscule marketing budgets, securing sponsorship is absolutely critical to the overall success of most promotions. The secret is to ensure that any sponsor ‘investing’ in a bigger picture project achieves a cost effective return.

That cannot be done without a careful evaluation of potential linkages and mutual benefits.

Quoting from a well known business publication,

“Sponsorship should not be confused with advertising. Advertising is considered a quantitative medium, whereas sponsorship is considered a qualitative medium.”

Beneficial partnerships can add tremendous value and credibility, especially if increased sales and market share can be directly measured to the strategic alliance. It also makes it far more likely that the sponsor would be willing to support future ventures.  Continue reading

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Filed under Barbados, Barbados Tourism, Economy

Bajan Poppets consider Al Barrack

Al Barrack Barbados

(Thanks to Bajan Poppets facebook)

Reason #275 why doing business with the Barbados Government like having a pet viper!

“Beware when you do business with the government of Barbados, because the court is the government and the government is the court.”

by Nevermind Kurt

by Nevermind Kurt

Remember Al Barrack? The Barbados government owes him BDS$77 million dollars plus for almost ten years, but won’t pay him.

Sure, Prime Minister Freundel Stuart promised to pay Al Barrack in November 2012, but Stuart lied pure and simple. The DLP government is really just waiting until Al Barrack dies. That’s the usual strategy of Bajan governments both DLP and BLP when the court orders the government to pay big damages or do something about a court judgement: just ignore the court order and wait until the poor bastard dies. Government squelches any effective news coverage through the expedient tactic of providing government advertising funds to local news media.

Hell, it’s worked since 1900 as a legal tactic to delay the court and to keep the press in line… so why shouldn’t the same tactic continue to work? It’s worked fine to handle Al Barrack so far!

Former PM Owen Arthur awarded "no tender" contract to Barrack.

PM Owen Arthur awarded “no tender” contract to Barrack.

You see, the BLP Owen Arthur government granted a $100 million dollar contract to Al Barrack to build a government office building – nevermind that Barrack had never done much more as a builder than to renovate some washrooms. (Okay, okay, that’s an exaggeration, but Al Barrack had never built anything remotely as large as the office building the BLP government contracted him for.)

Al Barrack reduced to this to try and have the government obey the court.

Al Barrack reduced to this to try and have the government obey the court. That’s Al dressed in white-face and carrying a placard sign. Poor bastard!

Oh… Did we mention that there was no tender?

That’s right folks, Barrack was simply awarded a 100 million dollar contract on the basis of his… what? His smile? His ability to sing? His reverse Al Jolson talents? (I’d walk a million miles for one of your smiles…) His Barbados Labour Party membership? (I choose #4… BLP membership!) Continue reading

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Filed under Barbados, Corruption, Ethics, Offshore Investments, Political Corruption, Politics, Politics & Corruption

Kathy and Henderson Nicholls – still happy and working hard

Barbados Mixed Marriage

A little over four years ago, Marcus did a story about Kathy Rockel, a white girl from Colorado USA who came to Barbados as part of a medical-transcription business. The business eventually went bust because Barbados just couldn’t compete competitively in the world market against places like India where people work for money that wouldn’t even buy food here.

Kathy and Henderson in 2010

Kathy and Henderson in 2010

But the focus of BFP’s story about Kathy is that while in Barbados she met and fell in love with Henderson Nicholls – a Bajan who follows the Rastafarian faith. They married and off they went to the USA.

I wondered how they were doing these years later. After all, about 50% of marriages fail anyway, nevermind the different races, religions and cultures between Kathy and Henderson.

So how are they doing?

Fine. Ever so fine!

Good for them. There is hope in the world.

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Filed under Barbados, Culture & Race Issues, Race

Another ‘driver lost control’ Barbados bus accident

Barbados bus accident

Tuesday, September 23, 2014

Another top-heavy Transport Bus overturns as the driver loses control.

We could write the same article over and over again, but instead we’ll direct you to the newspaper account of today’s accident, and to an article BFP published last June 19 2014 about the ongoing problem.

Nation News: Transport Bus Overturns
Barbados Today: Bus overturns in St. Philip  (Thanks to Barbados Today for the use of the photo)

“Perhaps the newspapers should reserve a space on the front page of the Saturday edition each week to feature a photo of the latest bus on its side while emergency personnel lift casualties from the wreck.”

… from the June 19, 2014 article below:

Barbados Free Press

Previous accident: Drivers should be careful not to apply de brakes too hard as the wheels are only semi-attached to the bus! Previous accident: Drivers should be careful not to apply de brakes too hard as de wheels are only semi-attached to the bus!

Overloaded, top-heavy, too fast, poorly maintained

It is becoming a weekly news story: “Bus driver loses control, (insert number) Injured.” This week’s accident is reported in Barbados Today as 13 injured in bus accident in St. George. Oh… wait… that was last week’s accident at Taitts Road with Cenetta Bennett driving. The driver in this week’s accident at Rowans Road is ‘R. Headley’: 13 hurt in bus accident.

Perhaps the newspapers should reserve a space on the front page of the Saturday edition each week to feature a photo of the latest bus on its side while emergency personnel lift casualties from the wreck. Even the tourists write with horror about taking the bus. The latest TripAdvisor story on Barbados buses asks What drugs are the…

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