Leadership!

Hartley Henry - DLP Political Strategist

Hartley Henry - DLP Political Strategist

In cricketing parlance, President Barack Obama is set to play a big innings. He is doing and saying all the right things. He was correct to authorize the use of force against the Somalia pirates and he is doubly right, as far as I am concerned, to lift travel restrictions to Cuba.

Of course, it is early days yet and we cannot comment, with certainty, on the impact of the multibillion dollar stimulus package. From all reports, nevertheless, confidence has been restored and 55 per cent of Americans believe Obama has the correct plan to turn the American economy around.

What we can already deduce from his near 100 days in office is that President Obama has cleaned up America’s image abroad, by mastering the art of winning friends and influencing people.

It would be uncharitable of me to reflect at this time on the failure of his predecessor to do likewise, but we all know that prior to the November, 2008 Presidential election, America was in dire need of friends and admirers. It needed an image makeover!

The experts may not wish to speak about it, but part of America’s problem over the last eight years, stemmed from its failure to cultivate new friends and to attend to those it had. Simply put, the country was rubbing most people the wrong way. The demise of Rumsfeld did not stem the tide of unpopularity and downright hatred that was engendered by the former administration. Dick Cheney in particular will long be remembered as a Vice President, America could easily have done without.

Okay, Dear Reader, by now you are asking ‘Hartley, where are you going with this? What has this to do with the serious issues that confront Barbados? This is nothing for Under the Microscope’.

You’re wrong. It is definitely for Under the Microscope and it is most relevant to Barbadians. We are witnessing a gradual return to world supremacy by a country whose immediate past leaders did much to propel the country in the opposite direction. For countries to like you, trust you, or want to do business with you, they must first admire and respect you. In many instances, their attitude towards you is mirrored by their image and perception of your leadership.

That leadership must not only be knowledgeable, it must also be graceful and polite. It must not be cantankerous, arrogant or bull headed in approach or attitude. Members of the former Bush administration were cantankerous, arrogant and bull headed and the world responded in a negative manner. Here in Barbados, little is known or spoken of the extent to which Barbados suffered in recent years as a result of such negative traits of leadership.

It is one thing to see a person on television all made up and smiling as a result of proficient spin doctors. But it is another to observe that individual on the regional and international scene and also to listen to the reviews and the attitudes of others towards what they perceive as arrogance, lewd and cantankerous behavior.

This country suffered immensely in the last eight years as a result of such. Barbados became an irritant to many, as a result of the “puffed-up” attitude of some who flew its flag. There were instances where persons refused to attend conferences and to participate in discussions, merely because of the caustic and abusive attitude of he, who thought he reigned supreme. Indeed, there is at least one Caribbean leader whose failure to visit Barbados or support any initiative proposed by Barbados in the last four years, was neither coincidental nor coincidental.

Leaders who are in office too long, have a way of ticking people off. Many become “giddy” with power. They wind up tearing down all that they built in their formative years. Even though they are recognized as gifted and as having a contribution to make, their attitude and sometimes arrogance has a way of tuning people out.

America is exhaling once again as a result of fresh, new, inspired and inspiring leadership. So too is Barbados! Persons come to the table knowing they can count on reasoned and reasonable approaches to problem solving. No longer does a colleague have to fear being abused or denigrated. No longer will expletives and verbal abuse characterize that which emanates from behind the Broken Trident. There is today a dignified approach to problem solving. There is the absence of a ‘know all’ attitude. The ‘take it or leave it, Barbados does not need you’ attitude has been replaced by one of collaboration, cooperation and mutual respect.

The big and mighty United States of America recognizes that arms and attitude, or lack thereof, will not solve its problems of 2009. Barack Obama has become his country’s Principal Ambassador, and he is making friends for America around the Globe. So too is David Thompson of Barbados!

Once again, it is possible for a leader of Barbados to request a meeting of Caricom and for all 13 leaders to drop whatever they are doing and attend. Once again, it is permissible for a leader of Barbados to speak with confidence and authority on behalf of the regional grouping; once again it is possible for Barbadians to proudly proclaim their citizenship across the region, without being reminded of how brazen, arrogant and downright rude their leaders are.

As is the case in the United States of America today, in Barbados, it is truly amazing what a timely change of leader has done.

Hartley Henry is a Regional Political Strategist. He can be reached at hartleyhenry@gmail.com

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  1. David April 23, 2009 at 1:00 AM #

    @WIV, anonymous et al

    We have no time to get involved in who can ‘piss’ the fartherest. Please continue to contribute to BU by maintaining the best standards as we know them. Thanks!

    Like

  2. Royalrumble April 23, 2009 at 10:54 AM #

    Fellow bloggers I was only waiting to see how BU would have responded to the colossal Jack*** Hartley Henry before I state my case. Hartley aka WIV thinks that he can walk around this and buy people with his blood money.

    There are decent people alive who cares nothing about nasty paper.

    You come on this blog spreading your filth about me and everyone else and now that you are getting lashes left, right and center and rightfully so you want BU to declare personal information on their bloggers.

    GO TO HELL HARTLEY.

    This parro can take his lashes and you know why because I know that the things that you are saying about me are not true. However, all the things we are saying about you are true because your reputation precede you. You only have to visit certain places in Barbados and mention your name and the awful stench on you start to flows.

    I am certain that you do not know to whom you are communicating with on this blog. You accuse me of blogging under a number of names, Anon, Dark Knight and anyone who oppose you. Royalrumble post under one name and that is the “Royalrumble”.

    Come on David don’t let Hartley disrupt the good flow you have going on this blog. You have created a unique opportunity for those of us who want to express ourselves freely.

    Don’t be frightened to tell that dumb shithead Hartley that if he wants to control a blog then go back to his Party’s blog the Barbados Free Press. They have destroyed that blog by allowing their yardfowls to say what ever they like about others on the blog and when you respond they either don’t post your comment or put you in moderation for days. I have dismissed that blog. I will never be seen there again. Hartley, Jones and all the other DLP girls can stay there.

    Fellow bloggers if I seem a little worked up here I am sorry I am just mad that these criminals would think that every one they come into contact with can be purchased.

    Now that I have let off some steam lets us get back to serious business. This DLP is more corrupt than Birds of Antigua in just one and a half years. Ya hear ma Hartley, I talking bout de Birds.

    I have a document to post that shows that UDC and RDC are now being used to build homes for the side women of MINISTERS. Hold on the document will be posted by BU admin.

    Like

  3. Take Your Time April 23, 2009 at 6:06 PM #

    Are we really talking about side-women? But wasn’t Julie Price (as she then was before she became Julie Arthur) the first beneficiary of RDC assistance? The records are there…

    Is Mia paying you to do this to Owen Arthur?

    Come on, Royalrumble, don’t go down that road.

    Like

  4. Royalrumble April 24, 2009 at 11:07 AM #

    Take Your Time you are a true true Dem. Plant an innuendo and then flee the scene.

    Come and explain yourself. Tell fellow bloggers what assistance Ms. Price later Mrs. Arthur got from RDC and tell us about the records. There are bloggers who are on this blog for the first time so speak clearly and fully to the you are raising. That is why I have decided to back up my statements with actual official documents.

    I can answer you word for word on this blog but I want you to stay your case fully. No half done job. So bring it on I am waiting on you to explain yourself.

    You ask me if “Mia paying me to do this to Owen” So you carrying on this foolishness to. You are trying to drive a wedge between Mia and Owen. Let me tell all you Dems this. You all are intellectually capable of accomplishing such a tasks. The only person in that Party that had that ability is dead and this current bunch just not cutting it. You all are too DUMB.

    I listen to the puppet Prime Minister during the estimates debate trying to make sport at the two figures given by Ms. Mottley and Mr. Arthur with respect to the fall of the foreign reserves. Poor soul he did not even understand what they were trying to tell him. What the idiot did not admit, but which is clear to all and sundry, is that the reserves held at the Central Bank fell by over $200 million while the reserves held by Commercial Banks fell/disappeared by over $500 million.

    So whether you used Mottley’s figures or Owen’s figures the fact of the matter is that capital flight has already started to take place in Barbados. This is precisely what took place in the early 1990s that lead to the collapse of the Barbados economy. It is an expression of the lost of confidence that the investors and those holding foreign currency in our system have in this Government’s ability to lead this country.

    Our foreign reserves will fall even further by year end and this is where the real challenge will come for this Government to pay its bills both at home and abroad. So civil servants can brace themselves. There is already talk in Cabinet to bring a law to repeal the amendment to section 112 of the Constitution prohibiting any government from ever cutting public servants salaries again.

    Like

  5. Royalrumble April 24, 2009 at 11:09 AM #

    By the way where is Hartley?

    Like

  6. Dark Knight April 24, 2009 at 12:12 PM #

    The DLP does not know but the Barbados Economy is in recession:

    Having not acted last year, several things that were considered priorities for the Government have now to be put on hold.

    This observation comes in the face of increasing evidence that the private sector is the priority if job losses are to be contained, economic decline is to be minimised and credit is to flow where it is most needed.

    Credit is to the private sector what blood is to the body!

    Almost all businesses large and small must have overdraft facilities with financial institutions in order to smooth out their flows of income relative to their expenses.

    In some businesses, the overdraft facility is more needed.

    For example, merchandise sales involve given shelf-space to a distributor such that retailers have stock for sale to consumers.

    In this case, the rate at which the merchandise is turned over is critical to the success of the business.

    In essence, the retailer is given a specific period to get rid of the stock and pay the distributor.

    If the consumers are buying at the desired rate, then the cycle is achieved to the benefit of all involved.

    Of course the consumer is paramount in this chain, and so if for some reason the purchasing power of the consumer is affected, the entire chain is weakened.

    This is the critical piece of evidence in understanding when a recession has reached the core of the economy.

    Recent complaints by car dealers, service providers and even food outlets tell the tale.

    Once economic activity slows to the point where financial institutions have to restrict or ration credit, the lifeblood of business is threatened.

    There is growing evidence that the private sector is in the throes of a recession, even if the Government does not wish to recognise the reality.

    It is in this sense that the Government is being asked to appreciate that the condition of the private sector is the defining difference in this recession which has not been officially recognised as yet.

    Given the tightness of Government’s fiscal space and the excessive taxation imposed in last year’s Budget, it may not be possible for the Government to add more than a 1.5 per cent of GDP to the fiscal deficit in assisting the private sector, without doing more damage to the country’s credit rating.

    The issue at hand is how to reduce cost to the private sector such that it does not see cutting labour cost as its only option.

    In this environment, it makes more sense to look at the balance sheets and income statements of businesses rather than to engage in cosmetic public relations by touring business establishments with an entourage of Press reporters.

    There is very little to learn from tours as opposed to engaging in heavy discussions on the real issues affecting businesses in Barbados.

    Attention to detail is preferred to texting!

    The Government has become so obsessed with public relations that it continues to boast about its social programme while ignoring that the economy is in recession.

    The major social initiative to date is really an act of enfranchisement that is giving the National Housing Corporation’s tenants ownership of the units; they are not new housing solutions.

    Let us hope that the Government is not so obsessed with itself that it fails to recognise the nature of the current economic recession and by extension succeeds in prescribing the wrong policy initiatives to the private sector that is rightfully crying out for help.

    Like

  7. Anonymous April 24, 2009 at 12:28 PM #

    What is the big mout Minister of Economic Affairs saying and doing bout all this? He like he finding that this is not as easy as cough and cold and nail juck!

    Like

  8. Dark Knight April 24, 2009 at 12:40 PM #

    @ Anonymous

    Here is what I found in today’s Trinidad Guardian:

    “Brace for hard times”

    “T&T will experience increasing unemployment this year as layoffs and job losses continue and the poor outlook for the recovery of energy prices calls for another revision of the country’s economic prospects, Central Bank Governor Ewart Williams said yesterday.

    Delivering the bank’s semi-annual Monetary Policy Report, Williams said the economy was slowing down faster that the Central Bank had expected.

    He said that whereas the bank had forecast that economic growth would slow down from 3.5 per cent in 2008 to between one and two per cent this year, the bank was now projecting no growth for this year.

    He said T&T was still not in a recession, but in stagnation. Williams warned that as bad as the local situation was, the other islands in the Caribbean Community (Caricom) were in worse shape.

    He said some of the Caribbean islands which are heavily dependent on tourism were experiencing significant increases in unemployment.

    He said while the US, Europe and Latin America had introduced stimulus programmes to reduce the rate of the slowdown and attempt to deal with rising unemployment, Caricom countries, except T&T, had limited scope for introducing fiscal stimulus plans as these were some of the most-heavily indebted countries in the world.

    “So there isn’t much scope to increase the budget and there isn’t much scope to borrow…This puts particular pressure on those Caribbean countries and presents special challenges for them in dealing with the increase in unemployment which is resulting in an increase in poverty,” Williams said.

    How come he know more about the barbados economy than Marion Williams and david Thompson.

    Is the DLP telling barbadians lies? Doesn’t that go against the grain of Freedom of Information, Integrity and Good governance?

    Change!!! Just 467 days you know.

    Anomymous, brace yourself! The Barbados Economy is in RECESSION but the DLP is keeping it a secret.

    It will get deeper. Wait for the budget!

    Like

  9. The Scout April 24, 2009 at 3:27 PM #

    P.M of St Lucia, Mr Stephenson King, as reported on the early morning news, has warned that there are going to be layoff in the public sector to combat the economic crisis. I hope this NEVER happens in Barbados because I fear the private sector is just waiting to see our government make the forst move, then “all hell brek loose.”

    Like

  10. me April 24, 2009 at 4:11 PM #

    why dont we just pray on that…

    Like

  11. Dark Knight April 27, 2009 at 11:04 AM #

    @ BU Admin.

    In light of recent comments by the AG, could you please start a discussion on the Public Service Act.

    Perhaps a good way to start would be to source the story on page 4 of the Sun on Saturday.

    This is important!

    The Public Service Act sought to appoints over 3, 100 persons who were working in the public service of Barbados for three years or more.

    You cannot get a promotion if you do not have a job.

    Or, can you, Mr. Stuart?

    Like

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