EYEWITNESS: Suspicious minds…

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…or realism?

Fresh from trying (unsuccessfully) to explain away frivolous spending (“retreats” at posh resorts) and nepotistic appointments (wife of AFC big-wig made Editor-in-Chief with no work responsibilities!) the Orwellian-sounding Director of Public Information took it upon himself to poo-poo Guyanese concerns about his Government giving away the store to outsiders. Quoting Elvis “the Pelvis” Presley, he criticised the Guyanese people for having “suspicious minds”!

Well “Good for them!” says your Eyewitness!! In the realist school of International Relations — which all countries have adhered to from the 20th century onwards — a state can never be sure about the intentions of other states; it therefore has to always assume that other states are acting to further their own interests. This is a “security dilemma” that naïve idealists like the DPI ignore at their peril, since economic or political diplomacy is just another way of waging war to gain advantages.

To say that Guyanese are “xenophobic” is to suggest they have no reason to be suspicious of all these foreigners suddenly beating a path to our door! But don’t they? In the realist school, the goal of all states is not only to survive, but also to EXPAND – by any means necessary; with war as the last resort.

Take China and the loans they have in front of Granger. They have US$4 trillion sloshing around in their foreign reserves, from which they’re offering loans to poor countries – even for projects that just won’t generate the revenues to repay the loans.

Why? Well, states always compare the capabilities they have; and to China, we’re a minnow they can easily influence. Eventually, even if they don’t take over the facility they funded – like that port in Sri Lanka – they’ll have influence over the strategic facility to project their power. In the modern world, the huge multinationals like Exxon act just like independent states; and it was very idealistic for President Granger to declare that Exxon won’t take advantage of us!! Exxon had a duty to its shareholders (analogous to the citizens of states) to maximise their returns, and that’s why they took the Trotman to the cleaners!!

With T&T, what was their posture up to when we were on our knees economically? That debt forgiveness Rowley threw into our face was done because they were invited to join the big gun creditors in the “Paris Club”, and went along for the prestige. When the “Jagdeo Initiative” suggested a solution to the region’s food imports – by funding agriculture in Guyana – didn’t Manning’s PNM Govt kill it by launching “mega farms” in TT?? Which all failed?!!

Since the DPI is such an Elvis fan, does he remember, “Your cheatin’ heart”??

…about being Regional Godfather

On the heels of signing the Energy MoU with T&T, President Granger announced he’ll be inking an “economic pact” with Barbados. In fact, he signalled an even more expansive plan: “We see Guyana’s future in the Caribbean, and we see the Caribbean’s future in Guyana.” Well, since 1973, when CariCom was launched, wasn’t that the goal?

Taking off his idealistic lens, shouldn’t he ask how come the CSME – which was to at least create a “single market and economy” – had been “put on hold?? And maybe ask Secretary General La Rocque what the answer was to his request for all members to give him a report on their compliance with previous agreements?

But, as Granger might be suggesting, let’s start with a new slate. Since he brought up that US$4billion CariCom-imported food bill, shouldn’t he revive the Jagdeo Initiative on Agriculture, which divvied up the responsibility to make Guyana into the agri centre?
It should be “all for one”, and not only “one for all”, shouldn’t it?

…on Teachers’ Arbitration Panel

The Ministry of Education asked the Ministry of Social Protection to intervene in their impasse with the GTU to name an Arbitration Panel.

Before the impasse was created? Return (the suggestion) to sender!!

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