The week that was
January 19, 2016
The week that was


In a country that still prizes some old-fashioned values like honesty and humility, Barefaced Behaviour made an unexpectedly strong showing last week, as personified by Luzette King, de facto leader of a motley crew of dwindling ‘democracy’ demonstrators.

First, Ms King simultaneously called for a boycott of the Searchlight, while brazenly inviting the same boycotted publication to cover her press conference. Then, she told SVG TV – with a straight face – that her daily demonstrations attract “50 to 100” protestors,{{more}} a shameless lie that had incredulous viewers nationwide choking on their dinner as they watched the evening news. Then, to cap it off, she declared that her picketing will continue every day “as long as the Unity Labour Party holds on to power.” Get comfy, Luzette: by our count you could have another 1,785 days to go.



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Bananas will never be what they used to be in the Vincy economy, and the days of “Green Gold” are a bygone era for most of us. But those hardy Banana Farmers that still till the soil had a small bit of good news last week: 40 pallets of bananas sailing off to market in Trinidad and Tobago. With T&T and Barbados buying more and more Vincy bananas, and with other potential markets opening up in the region, we’re hopeful that we can say goodbye to the dark days of devastation at the hands of hurricanes, Black Sigatoka, and collapsing preferential arrangements. There was a time when an export of 40 pallets of bananas wouldn’t merit a mention, but today, it’s a hopeful sign that Vincy bananas might be turning a corner.


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With every passing week, it gets harder to defend LIAT. We all know about the high prices, late departures, and missing luggage. We know about the irresponsible labour unions and pilots’ unreasonable demands. We even know about the millions of dollars that the Bajan, Antiguan and Vincy governments pour into the money trap every year. But last week was a new low. Without any warning whatsoever, 10 flight attendants called in sick at the same time, stranding flights and passengers all over the region, and costing LIAT hundreds of thousands of dollars. The reason, apparently, was that LIAT plans to lay off five flight attendants. The sick-out wasn’t some planned, union-approved action. Just an unannounced ambush by inconsiderate employees who put themselves above everything else. David Evans, the ageing British CEO that LIAT hired as their saviour almost two years ago, issued a “personal apology” for his employees’ stupidity. So what? If the pilots, flight attendants and CEOs of LIAT are insisting on crash-landing right out of business, maybe we should just let them.



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Not only did the Anglican Church lose one of its greatest assets in the charismatic and tireless Patrick “Father Mac” McIntosh, but it completely blew an opportunity to halt its slow slide into irrelevance in SVG. With its Kingstown Cathedral in a state of ramshackle disrepair, and huge crowds expected for Father Mac’s funeral, the Church moved the service next door to the Victoria Park. What the large audience witnessed was a listless sermon and a self-indulgently long John Horne. The service had none of Father Mac’s verve and vigour, nor did it demonstrate the common touch that made him so popular across SVG. No wonder the stodgy old denominations are losing more and more worshippers to the evangelicals every weekend.

If I had a question in SVG Parliament

…I’d ask St Clair Leacock if he wants to lead the NDP or continue in his role as Chief Parliamentary Rabble-Rouser. With his party in crisis and calls for “fresh legs” getting louder by the day, Leacock should be acting like a mature statesman. Instead, he’s loudly attacking PR Campbell and publicly endorsing Luzette King and her ragtag band.

If this is the alternative, maybe Arnhim isn’t so bad.

Media Watch

Word on the street is that Arnhim Eustace received a hostile reception when he appeared at the Rock Gutter remembrance service in Fancy to ask a series of “questions” that seemed more political than memorial. Every media house reported on Eustace’s queries, but you had to read down to the very last paragraphs before you could get any inkling that the crowd was unhappy with the inappropriate comments. “Eustace asks questions” is not news, but “Eustace booed at memorial service” certainly is. Everyone remembers that Gonsalves was booed at EG Lynch’s funeral, but absolutely no one remembers anything else about the service. In journalism parlance, leaving the good stuff ‘til the end is called “burying the lede.” Start with the interesting news up front, and leave the dull ‘questions’ for later.