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The George Brathwaite Column – A Call for Direct Democracy

George C. Brathwaite (PhD)

Generally, it is suggested that democratic politics involves public deliberation focused on the common good; it requires some form of manifest equality among citizens, and shapes the identity and interests of citizens in ways that contribute to the formation of a public conception of the common good. The great philosopher Aristotle posits that “the character of democracy creates democracy, and the character of oligarchy creates oligarchy.” American Senator, Elizabeth Warren contends that “democracy cannot be a spectator sport.” Taken together, these statements suggest that attaining democratic ideals is not something which can be done alone. Rather, every Barbadian has a significant role to play through ‘the general will’ in the interest of this democratic nation.

Democracy, properly understood, must project the power of the people to decide both directly and indirectly in the country’s affairs. Ironic though, is the contention that democracy in Barbados perfunctorily entails a representative system of governance that is headed by elected Members of Parliament (MPs) who rule ‘over the people in the name of ruling on their behalf’. Given the prevailing distrust and sometimes contempt for elected representatives, it would be recalcitrant to submit that Barbadians are willing to increasingly delegate life-altering decisions to MPs. Barbadians must rightfully pursue spaces in which to become firm craftsmen of their fate.

Notwithstanding, the texture and quality of representative democracy is sufficiently challenged by citizens wanting to assume a more direct role in affecting the choices of their political parties and the functionality of government – charity begins at home. The problems of parliament and parties, declining active participation rates, executive interference, and issues of legitimacy all arise in the context of Barbados’ governance. Voter turnout is relatively low, and public trust in political parties and elected representatives have become extremely worrisome. Parliamentary debate in Barbados has been dismissively called ‘poor-rakey’.

Undoubtedly, representative democracy is being tested. Among the reasons are: the persistent disconnect between politicians and constituents; illogical decision-making that exposes the paltry quality of representation; and allegations of malfeasance by some too selfish to serve with integrity. On those premises, the selection or rejection of candidates by political parties (i.e. old and newly formed), willing to contest the next elections in Barbados, has rekindled fascination and interest. Numerous constituents across Barbados are realising that theirs is captivity to a governance system which embellishes profound inconsistencies, several paradoxes, and multiple contradictions.

It appears that some among us are taking the lead in advocating for change. ‘Rubbing shoulders’ and ‘staying connected’ have become buzzwords in the wake of disgust against the status quo. Barbadians constantly express the desire to exercise ‘people power’ through a shakeup of their parliamentary representatives. Informatively, Baleka Mbete, Speaker of the National Assembly of South Africa, in 2008 acknowledged that: “We can still collectively take responsibility to symbolically lead our people to a different future where we talk about different values, different principles that guide how we govern the affairs of the country.” If Barbadians are to be directly involved in government and administrative practice outside the parameters of traditional representativeness, then more must be done to shape a nation of informed citizens.

Yet, as Jean-Jacques Rousseau affirms: “People always desire what is good, but they do not always see what is good. You can never corrupt the people, but you can often fool them.” Alleviating the problems frontally requires stringent but practical demands from the electorate. Barbados must become knowledgeable and creative in terms of remedying bothersome phenomena that hamper our democracy. Surely, it would be refreshing if Barbadians seriously consider a myriad of innovative schemes while accepting the usefulness of technology and e-frameworks with the potential for expanding active citizen participation in the affairs of the country.

Coincidentally, young people appear more interested in the use of technologies, social networking, and different interactive tools. Clearly, having consultations with the public to inform decision-makers of citizens’ views, could easily maximise the use of public meetings, town-hall meetings, e-platforms, and focus groups within targeted communities. The practice of deliberation could aim to bring citizens together to discuss policy issues using multiple modalities. The outcomes may influence decision-makers, for instance, through the mounting of consensus conferences and opinion polling which feedback to authorities.

Next could be co-governance that aims to give Barbadians significant influence during the process of decision-making. The focus could be on revisiting and reshaping the current community councils, incentivising civil society, and courting independent initiatives inclusive of youth councils and women organisations whose inputs are to be encouraged and valued. Most importantly, direct democracy applied with the aim to give Barbadians final decision-making power on key issues is vital and empowering. Added to the use of e-meetings, there can be formal introduction of the referendum; this, despite this writer’s personal reservation regarding such due to the likelihood of tyranny of the majority.

Notwithstanding, these mechanisms have the potential for Barbadians contributing to decision-making, and them making the final decision on key policies. Certainly, there will be questions of probity, timeliness, effectiveness, and necessity if direct democracy is to become resident in Barbados’ political system, and representative (indirect) democracy is to become more efficient. One readily recollects the Report of the Constitution Review Commission 1998 that was chaired by Sir Henry Forde. The Report noted among other things that citizens felt the Barbados Constitution contained “certain undesirable, anti-democratic provisions” with “too great a concentration of power in the hands of the Prime Minister,” and “too little accountability, both by public officials and parliamentarians.” These shortcomings are still present and the deficiencies have become more pronounced.

To curb some of the unwanted perils, a ‘recall’ system ought to be implemented to serve as a check against infelicitous elected representatives. Barbadians may also consider forming specific citizens’ assemblies that are selected by sortation; everyone would have a similar chance of becoming part of the governance process. Indeed, recommendations emerging from the Forde Commission, indicated that every eligible person in Barbados should “participate in the economic, political and social life of Barbados” in addition to contributing “to the well-being of Barbados to the best of that person’s ability.” Barbados’ political elites together with the electorate can push for these proposed practical mechanisms.

Consequentially, one must contemplate whether citizens and residents (i.e. the electorate) have the knowledge, ability, and right to participate more fully and directly in the political, technical, and administrative decisions that affect them. Again, Rousseau tells us that “one must not confuse what is appropriate with what is necessary, simple duty with narrow right, and what can be required of us with what we should do voluntarily.” The contention is that while the state does not legally require Barbadians to compulsorily participate in public affairs of the nation, Barbadians nonetheless have a duty to determine for themselves the laws which guide the state – ‘a duty to collectively control their common destiny’.

Simultaneously, building institutional capacity that facilitates civic inclusion and direct democratic participation ought to be continuous. Advisedly, failures in direct participation could be attributed to ‘learned helplessness’ and the success of a socio-cultural system that prevents Barbadians’ substantive participation in the first place; this characteristic necessitates openness. To that end, legislation supporting Freedom of Information, Freedom of the Press, Voter Empowerment, Ethics and Integrity ought to be introduced to strengthen democracy in Barbados. It is the people’s right to be engaged in decisions that touch their lives. Direct participation can be facilitated without dismantling effective elements of representativeness.

(Dr George C. Brathwaite is a political consultant. Email: brathwaitegc@gmail.com)

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43 Comments on “The George Brathwaite Column – A Call for Direct Democracy”

  1. nineofnine April 25, 2017 at 9:58 AM #

    Can Barbados step out of the box and adopt “THE LAW OF THE LAND” as its form/style of governance as found in this handbook?

    https://drive.google.com/file/d/0ByoBFsAn_OgvUjl6SHpMRHdNMkU/view

    Like

  2. Vincent Haynes April 25, 2017 at 10:30 AM #

    George

    We used to have local govt. directly dealing with the respective needs of our communities.

    In the ’60s it was decided by the powers that were that they were corrupt,wielded more power than the elected representatives and were a drain on the treasury.

    It seems that we are going full circle once we attempt to give the power back to the people via lobby/pressure groups……why would the political parties relinquish the power they aquired 50 odd years ago…….

    As a political activist could you tell us how you will get the power back in the hands of the people.

    Like

  3. Hal Austin April 25, 2017 at 11:00 AM #

    Vincent,

    This is a half-truth. We did have local government, with ED Mottley running the City as Mayor. But it was Barrow, to spite Mottley, who got rid of them. The same way he disestablished the Anglican church because they did not make his father bishop.
    This was the father of the nation at work.

    Like

  4. Pachamama April 25, 2017 at 11:03 AM #

    What democracy?

    There is no ‘democracy’ in this world

    The writer depends on trite, places the ‘common good’, not in terms of resources and their allocation

    But in some dated or mythical terms so that the political elites can get what they really want – the people’s power unto themselves.

    He is writing in times where the USA is revealed as the fascist state it has always been

    We were warning about this for up to 20 years, when that kind of thinking was not popular

    When most of Europe is flirting with a new age of fascism

    At a time when his BLP has done more damage to the many for the few

    Where the DLP continues with such policies apace

    Whether Georgie Porgie Brathwaite wants to recognize it or not, all the fascist structures are in place in Barbados as well

    He just wants his special dictator to be in charge of the apparatus of oppression – the Barbados government.

    And we have a long and distinguished history of elected dictatorship, from Adams to FJS

    Like

  5. Vincent Haynes April 25, 2017 at 11:17 AM #

    Hal

    I took the following from wikipedia which coincides with my memory…..kindly correct any miss-information in the below.

    Yes I am aware of EWB taking the City out of Mottley as he could not achieve it the other way around.
    …………………………………………………………………………………………………….

    In 1959 the country of Barbados was changed from the Vestry system, into a more modern system of local government patterned after that of the United Kingdom.[1] Two main sub-regions known as Districts were formed in Barbados, and the majority of the vestry parish councils, which acted as local government were consolidated and transferred into these larger areas and also the Bridgetown City Council.[2][3] Both were simply known as the Northern and Southern districts, and a third separate area consisted of the City of Bridgetown.[4] Each of these districts were run by Chairmen, and the city with a mayor affiliated with Barbados’ political parties.[2]

    In between 1967-1969, the process of local government was phased out. At this time all local matters became transferred to the national level, to the Interim Commissioner of Local Government. The District councils and mayors were removed and constituents in each parish from then on depended on their Parliamentary representative or national government corporation, department, or statutory agencies to carry out the provision of services across Barbados’ eleven parishes.[5]

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  6. David April 25, 2017 at 11:26 AM #

    @George

    Good to see you wrestling with this big and complicated issue. At the source/core of an active and relevant democracy is citizen engagement. It is not clear from your piece how the system can be engineered to stoke the required advocacy. As you know it does not matter the assemblies we create people must be encouraged to be engaged.

    Like

  7. Hal Austin April 25, 2017 at 11:43 AM #

    Vincent,
    First, don’t depend on Wikipedia. It contains a lot of false information on lots of subjects. Yes, the Vestry system was transformed in to local government.
    But there was no logical reason for the dissolution of the system, apart from Barrow’s envy of Mottley’s power base – and that is no party bias.
    At school some of us had a vestry scholarships.
    @Vincent, and this is not off message, we have been offering Island/Barbados scholarships since the 1920s and there has never been an audit: who are the winners, their social backgrounds, the winning schools, etc?
    Do people who go overseas to study return to the country or stay at overseas? What benefits does the country gain from these scholars?
    We can get all these answers easily by government offering a scholarship for a PhD student to write a thesis on the subject – or the media undertaking the research.
    Ironically, David Thompson re-created constituency councils, a poor and undemocratic imitation of local government.

    Like

  8. Vincent Haynes April 25, 2017 at 12:13 PM #

    Hal

    We are ad idem on the matter including Thompsons politicaly motivated attempt to recreate a sham of local govt.

    Like

  9. George C. Brathwaite April 25, 2017 at 12:14 PM #

    @ Vincent H.

    Hal gave you the appropriate answer on that one.

    @David

    I concur. The people must make the demands to be informed (e.g. David Comissiong and Hyatt). The media, while being respectful, must be rigorous in demanding information and answers. As you know, I am on record for FOI legislation. It really is up to the citizens to demand more within their groups, parties, associations, and as individuals. They cannot feel afraid to go the route of litigation as the DEMS have been trying to intimidate Comissiong.

    Like

  10. David April 25, 2017 at 12:19 PM #

    @George

    The media by definition is one of the guardians of democracy there is no need to be respectful. Just report the facts and ask the pertinent questions.

    Like

  11. Vincent Haynes April 25, 2017 at 12:35 PM #

    George

    As a political activist could you tell us how you will get the power back in the hands of the people.
    …………………..

    Chuckle……could you answer the above question…….Hal did not address it anywhere,only the preamble to it was discussed.

    Like

  12. Vincent Haynes April 25, 2017 at 12:50 PM #

    Anthropologist David Graeber: “It’s as if someone were out there making up pointless jobs just for the sake of keeping us all working.” Read more: http://bit.ly/2d5VeBO

    Like

  13. George C. Brathwaite April 25, 2017 at 12:56 PM #

    @ Vincent H.

    I am not sure if I fit the build as political activist, I would think not unless you speak on occasional activism for a particular issue/cause.
    Unlike you, I do believe that power does rest with the people. Unfortunately, this power is partially exercised once every five years. Persons, having seen what has occurred in other parts of the world (Arab Spring, US elections) are realising that civil disobedience, protest actions inclusive of a march of disgust can make a difference. We need an informed citizen, an unrelenting press, and greater people participation and much can be accomplished. Nothing is absolute or perfect, but power does reside with the people (once they know it – consciousness).

    Like

  14. FearPlay April 25, 2017 at 1:01 PM #

    An idiot is in the House of Parliament recommending that there are 15 – 17000 unoccupied houses in Barbados and Government should look at compulsorily acquiring them to either sell or rent. Pray tell when would THIS government pay the owners for their land. There is currently a plantation about to declare bankruptcy due to compulsorily acquired land and non payment by government. Is this a new form of democracy? Maybe it is time for the citizens to compulsorily acquire unused land and buildings from government and then set the price to be paid whenever they feel like.

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  15. Vincent Haynes April 25, 2017 at 1:10 PM #

    George C. Brathwaite April 25, 2017 at 12:56 PM #

    Unlike you, I do believe that power does rest with the people.

    We need an informed citizen, an unrelenting press, and greater people participation and much can be accomplished. Nothing is absolute or perfect, but power does reside with the people (once they know it – consciousness).
    ……………………………………………………………………………………..

    Hmmmm………you have me scratching my head now……you have seen many comments from me arguing exactly what you say I am against…..I could easily accuse you of being a plagiarist as I have written those words above on many an occasion.

    You realy have me wondering about you and your intent.

    Like

  16. George C. Brathwaite April 25, 2017 at 1:18 PM #

    @ Vincent H

    I am not plagiarising anything and I only framed my answer “unlike you” based strictly on your question about when will the people get the power back? To my mind, it has never left and always remains there, even if residual.

    Hooray, keep writing and sharing your insights. I am sure they are welcomed by most. I am not about entanglements, too many other things going on. A plagiarist?

    Like

  17. Vincent Haynes April 25, 2017 at 1:26 PM #

    George

    We have an inept govt that the majority of the people would like changed………after 3 years of an increase in the desire to change…..they are still in power.

    So tell me again about the people having the power other than every 5 years.

    I accept that you have not been able to come up with an answer to my question and this dance would not have occurred if you had simply stated that.

    Like

  18. George C. Brathwaite April 25, 2017 at 1:43 PM #

    @ Vincent H

    The truth is, it feels as though the majority of the voices I hear wanted to see the back of the DLP for several years evenn before 2013. However, we do not just abandon rules. In the absence of things such as recall, or being able to force an election, and with DLP party loyaltyy what it is even though some on the inside have been critical of the PM and failed policies, clearly there was a problem. As it stands, the DLP is a legitimate government with a mandate until that time changes. If the majority say one thing but do not back it with the requisite action, this conversation could be repeated in another 5 years. The proof of the pudding is always in the eating my friend.

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  19. Andrew Simpson April 25, 2017 at 1:44 PM #

    Brexit has shown that people can have power, for better or for worse. Your last paragraph, dealing with “learned helplessness” being attrituble to a historical social-cultural system is at the heart of the matter. Would the people support the disbanding of Westminster style politics, with its outdated geographical constituency representation? In return, they can have a direct participatory democracy model designed around a TEAM of twelve professionally qualified economic managers, functioning in a more businesslike manner, on a modern information and communications technology platform? This would offer transparency, accountability and efficiency; restoring investor confidence while releasing potential for competitive free market enterprise to develop.
    Enough of the accustomed partisan politics. Let’s move on to higher heights, together.

    Like

  20. George C. Brathwaite April 25, 2017 at 1:57 PM #

    @ Andrew Simpson
    You wrote: “In return, they can have a direct participatory democracy model designed around a TEAM of twelve professionally qualified economic managers, functioning in a more businesslike manner, on a modern information and communications technology platform? This would offer transparency, accountability and efficiency; restoring investor confidence while releasing potential for competitive free market enterprise to develop.”

    I do not share the view that such a model is best for Barbados. Indeed, such corporatist models I tend to reject almost from the start and that is particularly why I cannot be a fan of Solutions Barbados.
    While I know that we are seeking althose things such as greater accountability and transprency etc, where such models have been used in history became disastrous. Indeed, in Italy it opened the door the the rise of fascism.

    Like

  21. Well Well & Consequences Observing Blogger April 25, 2017 at 2:26 PM #

    Vincent….Hal dont want us to research, he wants us to take his word for everything, which is often filled wuth falsehoods. I dont even want to get into a debate with him and thpse scholarships and why the recipients are better pff not returning to the island, not working fir any government entity ir the private sector, if they caneven find a job, Hal did not return from UK, so he is a fine one to talk…

    …..it would be like debating, CLICO, the thief Leroy Parris and when governments, both of them on the island, refuse to regulate insurance companies and their thefts of policyholders money because they are so closely aligned with, in bed with, those same executives and the insurance company lawyers……….totally pointless.

    Like

  22. Vincent Haynes April 25, 2017 at 2:32 PM #

    …….the disbanding of Westminster style politics, with its outdated geographical constituency representation? In return, they can have a direct participatory democracy model designed around a TEAM of twelve professionally qualified economic managers,…….
    ……………………………………………………………………………………………………………..

    Could not support the above concept or Solutions which is similar.

    …..one must always have room for the common person/non-academic to rise to fore.

    ……Vision for country/society normally comes from the untainted as well as the ability to implement the way forward.

    We need a mechanism to force whichever entity is holding the reigns of govt. to adhere to the constitution and the laws of the land.

    ……the problem lies in the fact that so far both of the entities that have held govt for the past 50 years have not answered to the community when questioned.

    ……Only lobby/pressure groups in every community can achieve this,possibly through the cooperative movements,unions,farming,manufacturing,craftworks,healthy life style,sports,astrology,science,etc.

    …..should these organisations join together from a grass roots level they could ensure that whoever is acting as the servant of the people will truly serve the people.

    …..failure to do this will be decided upon by a non-elected body of citizens,should they refuse to appear or answer the people,the final choice must be the shut down of all ports.

    ……will we be bold enough to go through pain for future gain……….I doubt it.

    Like

  23. David April 25, 2017 at 3:17 PM #

    @Andrew

    You give way too much credit to the vast number of the electorate. How many are dullards? How many are versed in the civics?

    Like

  24. Vincent Haynes April 25, 2017 at 4:58 PM #

    David

    I wonder how many of the electorate are listening to our servants in the house………the shouting,denials,pointing of fingers and one big bassa bassa over the Grotto.

    An attempted repudation of the auditor generals report by the MoF……what a poor rakey lot.

    Like

  25. William Skinner April 25, 2017 at 5:33 PM #

    In one breath we talk about giving power
    to the people and in another we call them “dullards” and question whether they
    are capable of exercising or understanding
    that power.
    It boggles the mind how we pretend of
    being interested in the people and then
    our persistent intellectual classism comes
    to light. It’s a good thing that the people
    are wise enough to ignore our posturing.

    Like

  26. David April 25, 2017 at 5:34 PM #

    @Vincent

    Had a qucik listen to the empty vessels.

    Like

  27. Bush Tea April 25, 2017 at 5:35 PM #

    Real “people” ALWAYS have power…. more so than we even know….

    Brass bowls, however are good only for shiite noise….. especially empty ones.

    If we were dealing with REAL people in Barbados, for example…., just the CLICO issue alone would have put the fear of God into the donkeys of all the leper’s friends, puppets and bedmates….. Then after the Four Seasons shiite, our leaders would be tip-toeing on the path to righteousness in fear …. and upon the revelations of CAHILL, heads would be rolling down Bay street….

    But brass bowls do NOT suffer from righteous indignation….. they tolerate shiite, and invite themselves to be used as “topsies”….

    Such ‘non-persons’ are always powerless, and usually live the lives of serfs.

    Like

  28. David April 25, 2017 at 6:06 PM #

    @Bush Tea

    The nuance of most arguments always are lost on William.

    Like

  29. William Skinner April 25, 2017 at 7:03 PM #

    @ David
    Why involved Bush Tea? I have no problem with his position . It is you who introduced the word “dullards”. You seem to believe that you can write whatever you like and then talk about nuances. Leave Bush Tea out of this. He is very sound in his arguments but you hide behind a whole lot of inferences and when called to order, you pretend that you are some devil’s advocate. You should note that my post came before Bush Tea’s.

    This is exactly what you said:
    “David April 25, 2017 at 3:17 PM #
    @Andrew

    You give way too much credit to the vast number of the electorate. How many are dullards? How many are versed in the civics?”

    For your information it is those who never went to high school, who were denied basic privileges, who in many cases were considered to be illiterate, who built this country with no lessons in civics !!
    Go and dig up Sir Grantley and Frank Walcott and find Barrow’s ashes in the Gulf of Paria and they will educate you on how those people were more attuned to the governance of this country, than many of those who you seek to elevate. They are the ones who have given birth to this democracy and we ride on their backs. Adams , barrow and Walcott, would never refer to them as dullards or ask” How many are dullards.

    Dullards:
    idiot, fool, simpleton, ignoramus, oaf, dunce, dolt,…….

    You wrote that not Bush Tea !!!

    Like

  30. Gabriel April 25, 2017 at 7:25 PM #

    If one listens to the Brasstacks programme,Barbados has its fair share of dullards.They come day after day with the same topic,same argument,same conclusion and expect Dennis Johnson and others not to seek to enlighten them.Today was the woman called Miss Undecided who apparently laboured under the impression and felt emboldened by a chat with Mia Mottley Just out of the clear blue sky,this dullard decided that Dennis Johnson was not giving her a hearing etc and cleared off the programme.I heard no such one sided encounter the woman complained about. CBC’s call in is riddled with dullards especially of the Fatted Calf types as found among some of the BU contributors.

    Like

  31. independent voice April 25, 2017 at 7:36 PM #

    well Said Skinner in your 7.03 pm comment

    Your sincerity and truthfulness is well noted could not have said it any better myself.

    Like

  32. independent voice April 25, 2017 at 7:45 PM #

    The elitist in Barbados have convenient memories of sort and seems to forget that the roots of barbadian beginnings are well cemented in the hands and feet of their elders who despite of a good education labored beyond belief with an interest to make Barbados better
    it is almost shameful to see how the elitist have craved out which part of the pie serves them best only wanting to leave the scruffings for the dullards and illiterate who they believe have no voice

    Like

  33. A. Dullard April 25, 2017 at 7:53 PM #

    @ David, William, BT
    Leave me out of it.

    Like

  34. Gabriel April 25, 2017 at 8:36 PM #

    Independent Voice
    It’s the dullards and illiterate whose voices are heard above the din and they are dangerous to a civilised society.Its the kind found in Eastern Europe and which the UK seeks to isolate itself from in making the break from the EU.In the 50’s and 60’s it was the West Indian among whom were lots of dullards and illiterates.Some are still there and sometimes attempt to communicate on BU.

    Like

  35. David April 25, 2017 at 8:40 PM #

    Have some of us not been asking for civics to be taught so as to educated the people? Have we not had perennial debate about a cadre of the electorate willing to sell their vote? Do we have close to 40% number of the electorate who have refused to vote or otherwise get involved in exercising rights under our system of government? What else to call them but dullards. If you are not part of the solution you are part of the problem

    Like

  36. Artax April 25, 2017 at 9:02 PM #

    @ Gabriel

    Surely you should have realized by now that, similarly to those DLP yard-fowls who frequent the “halls” of BU, Ms Undecided has a script she must adhere to.

    Yes, and I agree with you that they are “dullards.” Case in point, the yard-fowl consortium AC that now posts under the name Angela Skeete, used an excerpt from the 2011 Auditor General’s report, which referred to debt owed by government owned hotels, as proof hoteliers are indebted to government.

    Now, isn’t that characteristic of a dullard?

    CBC’s “Talk ya Talk,” its moderators and regular callers are not encouragement enough to make me want to tune into that station.

    Maureen Holder has to be the most biased and ignorant moderator ever to host a call-in-program. Glyne Murray is running a close second, while Tony Marshall and Maxine McClean are fighting for third position.

    If the DLP were to lose the next election, I believe Maureen, Ms Undecided, Arthur and that crew will commit suicide.

    Like

  37. angela Skeete April 25, 2017 at 11:13 PM #

    It would be the dullards and iliterates who are going to make sure with uttermost certainty that the blp lose the next election. I notice that one of the intellect with plenty fire power who once frequented BU with the stupid cartoons have retreated

    Sign

    illiterate

    Like

  38. Bush Tea April 25, 2017 at 11:40 PM #

    Wuhloss…..
    Licks bout here yuh!!! 🙂
    Good to see William sharing some licks…. 🙂
    Boss, …Just drop in a couple ‘pips’ here and there …and you are a true rumshop Bajan fuh truth.

    Some advice to you William….
    Get to understand WHICH David(BU) you are dealing with….. There is a particular one who does not pull punches… but who is just as well meaning as the original Boss…
    LOL
    Ha Ha Ha …

    This business of Bajan brass bowlery was a bit unclear to Bushie ..until Tron explained the whole thing a few weeks ago…

    A small society of black people do NOT escape the chains of four centuries of slavery and deprivation, and of ‘Slave Code’ development ……in just two generations.
    We had TEN generations of gene-manipulation and trait-destruction …that would have (and did) exterminated lesser races….

    It probably IS unrealistic to expect to see widespread, high-level, HUMAN development displayed by a people who have undergone such genocidal trauma for so long…
    Perhaps this explains brass bowlery….

    Like

  39. David April 26, 2017 at 10:29 PM #

    This is one way we can enhance out democracy. Engage in culture changing behaviour at every opportunity.

    Tara Inniss-Gibbs

     

    Just had a fabulous salad for lunch today at the cafe at George Washington House (Barbados) today before running off to a meeting. But when I wanted something sweet to take away I asked if they used polystyrene containers. Nope. Cardboard. And then when asked if I wanted a fork I said yes only to have these revealed. Wooden forks and spoons with I love Barbados stamped into them. Made in Barbados no less. And paper straws are available as well. Biodegradable. They will definitely see me coming back!

    No automatic alt text available.

    Comment

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  40. Vincent Haynes April 29, 2017 at 9:33 AM #

    How is this for direct democracy?????

    PAR victorious in Curacao elections
    Added by Barbados Today on April 29, 2017.
    Saved under Regional
    4

    The Partido Alternativa Real (PAR) led by its new political leader Eugene Rhuggenaath was Saturday declared the biggest winner following the preliminary count of the general elections held here on Friday.

    The PAR received 18,362 of a total of 78,815 votes cast in the election that was observed by a four-member team from the Caribbean Community (CARICOM).

    It is the first time that Rhuggenaath participated in an election as leader of the party. The PAR was one of 11 parties that contested the poll, two less than the October 5, 2016 poll when three parties won four of the 21 seats in Parliament.

    The PARTIDO (MAN) party of former prime minister Hensley Koeiman came in second with 16,071 votes. The party placing third, is the current coalition partner MFK of Gerrit Schotte with 15,710 votes.

    Other parties that have received enough votes for a seat in Parliament are Korsou di Nos Tur (KdNT) of the businessman Amparo dos Santos with 7,438 votes, Pueblo Soberano with 4,029 votes, PIN of former Minister of Traffic, Transportation and Spatial Planning Suzanne Camelia-Römer with 4185 votes and Movementu Progresivo (MP) of Dr. Marilyn Moses with 3885 votes.

    For the first time one of the country’s oldest party the Partido Nashonal di Pueblo ( PNP) led by Humphrey Davelaar did not receive enough votes for a seat in Parliament. This will be the first time the party is not represented in Parliament since it was established about 70 years ago.

    The preliminary results indicate that PAR will have 6 seats in the Parliament, with MAN and MFK five seats each, KdNT two seats, and PIN, PS and MP one seat each.

    Friday’s elections followed the collapse of the Koeiman government on October 5, 2016 after seven weeks. The cabinet fell on February 12, 2017.

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  41. Alvin Cummins May 5, 2017 at 6:23 PM #

    George:
    You said with regard to recall, that it should be applied as :”…a check against infelicitous elected representatives”
    Who determines this? What method do you use to make a determination< two thirds of what? Simple majority of what? By referendum? who designed the question? who or what determines infelicity? What do you define as “infelicitous”/ When does one determine when the action took place? what percentage will be used to require a vote? What about a defence? is there room for appeal? Who constitutes the appellate? how soon after being elected does this take place? Give me details of the proposal and so on. etc.
    Ya think it easy so?

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  42. Alvin Cummins May 5, 2017 at 6:29 PM #

    Bushy:
    “We had TEN generations of gene-manipulation and trait-destruction …that would have (and did) exterminated lesser races….”
    How do you know with certainty that it was only ten generations?
    They came before Columbus; Longgg before. go further back. Investigate interpersonal contacts with indigenous peoples, from way back.

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  1. David Comissiong Branded Enemy of the State | Barbados Underground - April 25, 2017

    […] “An idiot is in the House of Parliament recommending that there are 15 – 17000 unoccupied houses in Barbados and Government should look at compulsorily acquiring them to either sell or rent. Pray tell when would THIS government pay the owners for their land. There is currently a plantation about to declare bankruptcy due to compulsorily acquired land and non payment by government. Is this a new form of democracy? Maybe it is time for the citizens to compulsorily acquire unused land and buildings from government and then set the price to be paid whenever they feel like”. – BU Commentator Fearplay […]

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