Like the majority of the population, I often wonder which is the best Chinese chopper to buy since the variety available on Amazon is enough to confuse the most stable of minds regardless of the 7% low oil price tax. Not having a Chinese chopper or Vetsin in my kitchen for a number of years I decided ask the experts, namely the cooks at many of the almost countless Chinese restaurants in the country springing up like CEPEP gangs. What I didn’t realize was how not passionate these cooks are about what they chop things with. “Is just ah wok” one of them told me. One of the cooks I spoke to asked not to be identified and said” I just buys them on Charlotte Street. Sometimes I buys half a dozen wontime.” When I pressed him for a brand he looked confused and said Levi. He then showed me one of his choppers and the device had no brand name but only the words “made in China, where else” stamped on one side. The chopper looked dull and confused, much like the cooks who used them. Several other Chinese cooks were not as helpful and thought I just wanted to get them deported. I told them in this country the furthest they will get deported to is Tunapuna.
I eventually gave up on the “local input” and realized that the reviews on Amazon will be more helpful. Naturally, I went with a cheap one with scores of good reviews. I will soon be the proud owner of a multipurpose chopper wastefully bought with scarce US dollars the Minister would prefer go to the party financiers.
Just over one million citizens are registered to vote in the General Elections in Trinidad and Tobago today. This election season has been a hard, uncomfortable and a wasteful time for most citizens except for mike men, jersey men, stage providers, political songsters and political paraphernalia providers. By 10:00 p.m tonight most of the writing will be on the political wall and a victorious party will emerge setting off fireworks disturbing dogs, cats, birds and the losing party. So one party will win and one party will lose, one party will be appointed the official plunders while the other will look on in envy. Regardless of which party wins Jack Warner will lose and that is the one victory the country can celebrate together. Mr. Warner is a bitter man who has enough money to be uniformly miserable for the rest of the life he chooses to have.
Despite who loses, I will continue to go Movietowne twice a month and avoid chicken fried in old oil and once a month if the dollar is devalued. Politicians in Trinidad and Tobago are all about smoke and mirrors, creating the illusion of hope and despair and never talking or dealing with the truth. If a new party, the PNM, comes into power then their revenge on the old party will be brutally executed while attempting or pretending to attempt to steady the economy. If the Peoples Partnership wins then they will be sure to continue their nepotism and favoritism and blunders as if the last five years never happened. This is the hope the country has to look forward to tonight.
Fortunately, I don’t have to listen for the results and commentary by biased and ignorant “Political Analyst” on both sides of the divides as the sound of fireworks from my neighbor, or no sound at all will tell me who won. It is a no-win-no-win situation.
People and economist are saying that Trinidad and Tobago is living beyond its means and that is contributing to the drain on foreign exchange in the country. This was no doubt made worse in the short term by the flood of back-pay to public servants. Also, our spending habits such as buying too many cars and flooding “skyboxes” with goodies all year round is no doubt a big drain but I can say from observation that the forex drain from buying imported cars far outweigh the purchases via individuals’ skyboxes.
But the real cause of this drain is too much disposal income due to heavily subsidized basic needs such as water, electricity, prescription medicine, gasoline, laptops, GATE and canned foods. If we were to pay a less subsidized portion of these items then there would be less money to make the unimaginative big time importers of everything even less imaginative and innovative. The motto of these companies seems to be “just bring it down and it will sell.”
Everyday you see oil prices sliding downhill worse than Jack Warner’s reputation. Everyday you see countless ads urging us to buy in order to be happy. Banks, a big beneficiary of the big disposable incomes due to big government subsidies, are all too willing to make it happen with a loan of your choice. The Minister of Finance hinted that they are concerned with how the reduction in government subsidies will affect the most vulnerable. The most vulnerable has always been the politicians’ pet and best friend so it is always in political parties interest to have as many most-vulnerable as they can create as democracy is one man one vote.
I am anxious for the elections to be over with and I do not envy the next party in power as something drastic will have to be done quickly to prevent our thin-walled economic bubble from bursting. Sink or swim, Kamla or Rowley, I want this thing called General Elections to be over so we can pay attention to the more serious things in life like the economy and how much de Government goe give we.
After reading the interview in the Daily Express today with Flow’s CEO I can’t help come to the conclusion that Flow is a sleazy and even corrupt organization. Imagine they were selling channels they had no rights to for five years and use the excuse they did not know who to pay – yes five years. This is like renting out a house you do not own to people and pocketing all the money because you do not know who owns the house. That is a crime, Flow. Flow had to be either stupid or corrupt and since they are making millions I don’t think they are stupid.
Does Flow know that DirecTV does not behave in this type of underhand and sleazy manner as Flow and DirecTV is now gaining subscribers at a fast rate due to having a superior product at better prices than Flow – honesty pays. All I can conclude is that Flow was playing a waiting game because they know how ineffective the telecom authorities were. Flow was gaining customers with stolen channels and now they are exposed and embarrassed for being big time thieves they are all over the place making feeble excuse after feeble excuse. What a big pack of corrupt jokers. As a customer I don’t want any rebate, I just want to see heads roll, or even flow. That would be satisfying enough. Anyway, I do have some questions for Flow
(1) If the telecom authority (TATT) did not step in would you still be carrying those channels?
(2) Do you think you misrepresented your channel lineup to customers by giving them the impression they were paying for these channels as you were also paying for them?
(3) Is Flow’s corporate policy to steal and not get caught?
Skamla vs Rowdy is the best way to summarize the 2015 General Election in Trinidad and Tobago. When a friend from foreign asked how everything was shaping up I had to ask what things. I am probably not as enthralled by the political parties with proven track records as plunderers, and mismanages as the rest of the population so I might just throw away my vote and ask for Jack to be our next Prime Minister. Don’t puke yet since Jack, as sleazy as he looks and probably is, is the real thing. He can’t hide his past as it is in the media, and blogs all over the world as well as YouTube. You see we know Jack only cares about us because he has dedicated much of his current life to sinking the monster he created, Skamla and trying not to go to jail in the U.S. We know where he stands even if he stands in quicksand. With Skamla and Rowdy you don’t know for sure who is pulling the strings but we are confident the strings are being pulled by unknown forces probably with devious and more devious agendas.
The problem is that Skamla had over five years to be better than Manning and you would have thought that would have been easy but she made this into the hardest job in the world. It should have been so easy not to be mad and run the country sanely but she blew it with bad choice after bad choice. As for Rowdy, I am not afraid of him as Skamla and her minions tell me I should be but I am afraid of several of his visible and invisible followers eyeing the spoils of the land. I am afraid of the typical PNM unfairness waiting to be be unleashed just as the Partnership unleashed theirs over the last five years.
Power is addictive as cocaine and currant rolls so the People’s Partnership need their fix and so does the PNM. When they ask us to vote for them they are asking us to help them and a select handful of people to become dignitaries who will watch down on us with the scorn they think we deserve probably because we were dumb enough to vote for them.
In short, I want a government to be fair, to not thief, to make logical decisions, to get rid of Port of Spain as a place of work, to stabilize the supply of foreign exchange, to lock up the Mr Bigs and to not have to worry about Government created drama featured in every Sunday newspapers. From what I can see this isn’t going to happen anytime soon.
I have a theory which says that a Government must be changed every five years as this is the only way to put the breaks on the corruption juggernaut they have nurtured and cared for during their term in office. If this juggernaut is not stopped then the corruption wave will continue to grow at an exponential rate and by the end of a second five year term it will become an out of control Godzilla. In other words it will become we culture. Also, by putting a new party in power the corruption dollars and favors would have been shared between the very select few and fortunate of the party in power. This is a type of proportional representation that was quietly proposed by the vibrant corrupt sector of our blessed land.
Unfortunately both the proverbial and actual man-in-the-street will be out of pocket by the total amount amount of corruption dollars that is pocketed by the few and fortunate. It will not matter which party you vote as the tax man doesn’t discriminate and 99.999% of all citizens will have to fund both the unelected and elected corrupt.
Like cockroaches and the poor, the corrupt will always be with us only the color of their jerseys may be different. Don’t be fooled by highways and railroads as your vote is not about that. Your vote isn’t even about getting a better quality of life or a reduction in crime or an increase in parking spots in Port of Spain. Your vote is about corruption and only corruption, everything else they say is the anesthetic that dulls the pain of choosing our evil.
Trinidad and Tobago is a comical place and it’s not just because the name of the country is so long there is not enough space on many of its own official Forms to accommodate its spelling. No, it is funny because of the amount of people who operate in their own little vacuums all over the place. People who swear their vacuum is the the right vacuum and the best one. Take the so-called Debates Commission vacuum. This Commission is trying to get at least the two most likely potential leaders to debate “issues affecting the Country” on the same day. When I read the daily hullabaloo in the content-starved daily media about the ups and downs of staging this sideshow you would swear this Great Debate would be very influential in influencing the public in deciding which hangman will pull the leaver. Grow up Debates Commission, this is Trinidad and Tobago where people decide which party they voting long before they are even conceived. Besides, politicians always say the the nicest things possible when General Elections is in the air so who needs this sweet talk and cheap talk moderated on live TV by people who most likely don’t even know what the daily life in Biche or Icacos is really like or that these towns even exist. Just tell us who the major shareholders are for each party and we good to go.