Thoughts On The Throne Speech

I don’t have much to say about the Opposition replies to the 2009 Throne Speech. However, I have written a post over on JEWEL concerning my own thoughts on the Speech. In general I found the speech okay, although I think it limits itself too much on some issues, and I’ve expanded on them in my post.

36 thoughts on “Thoughts On The Throne Speech

  1. Just a bunch of middle class toilet paper like the study on black males.
    Honestly the PLP are carbon copies of the UBP do the least hey ca to help poor people but idolize the rich.
    The throne speech totally ignored the recession gang violence and poverty rampant islandwide.
    Time for some action before the next throne speech for real.

  2. exactly,carbon copies of the OLD UBP, they are the multi-millionaire black gentry class. they don’t give a rats- ass about the majority under class, who are left to fend for them selves ,leaving it to a few charities and the Salvation army to feed and house the growing unemployed,old and homeless .

    You left out the rampant corruption ,led by the carpetbagger , and snake oil salesman ,Ewart brown & his friends stealing your money .

  3. Not much to say either except that this may well be the first time that the Opposition reply to the Throne Speech has been censored.

  4. The words that were struck from the record were pretty slanderous though. I don’t agree with striking them from the record (and I thought parliamentary immunity/priviledge allowed for such comments) but I don’t think the words were well chosen. I would have thought a motion of censure was more appropriate, but I’m going to have to go over parliamentary procedures again. I hate that book…

  5. Jon, the words that were struck were no stronger (if as strong) as statements that have been made previously.

    But it’s kind of scary that government ministers can make a motion to have the record of a claim against them struck out.

  6. I don’t support what was done, as I stated. However one would expect that the Opposition could appeal against it, if they were sharp enough that is.

    All that Mr. Swan needed to say was that there was ‘a growing perception that million dollar contracts were being granted without due process’ or something like that. It gets the same point across and doesn’t allow something like this to happen.

  7. No perception about it. Burgess already admitted that Cabinet awarded contracts based on considerations that were not known to the technical committee.

  8. I’ve decided I want to be a PLP cabinet member. I mean, if I came out with the performance, returns and efficiency that they do I would have been fired years ago from my job. But their ‘bosses’ just happily go with it. It’s great.

    I mean, coming in overbudget on the Berkeley school was one thing – maybe it was a learning experience. But then this follow up with the pier – at 200% of budget and with multiple allegations of fraudulent contracting…and of course no transparency…

    But hey, the people of Bermuda have spoken. Clearly the ministry is doing just fine by their judgement, so let em do it in peace. Why should we care what the government spend anyway? It’s not like it’s our money.

    Once again, we get the public sector spending habits we deserve.

  9. Boycott voting or vote for the new party in order to teach them a lesson. If you continue to elect them, they don’t have accountability and never will. We taught the UBP a lesson, why not the PLP?
    Remember, the people have the power by the mere fact that the people have the vote. Please do not vote blindly and allow this nonsense to continue at the expense of our future generations being poorer than we can even imagine. We will have to re-pay all this debt, yet we have NO SAY in how the money is spent!

  10. Sara,

    Is it really so simple as voting for a new party? A new party that has yet to express any clear direction for the future?
    Once this party identifies the path that it wants for Bermuda, then fine, if it agrees with what you as an individual wants, then by all means, vote for them, but how can we at this juncture encourage people to vote in a party simply because it is new. It seems to me that right now, as of today, November 17, that is the BDA’s claim to fame. Yes there are people disillusioned with PLP and UBP, but to simply vote for a new party because it represents an alternative to me does not sit well. I need to know where they stand on certain issues, i need to be confident that they have the capability to run this country- only 3 of them have any parliamentary experience, and none longer than 2 years. Dont get me wrong, I am not slamming them, but I think they need a bit more time before they are considered an alternative. And their response to the throne speech was not indicative to me of their readiness to govern.

    What i hope to see is that this new party forces those in the PLP and UBP to be a bit more efficient in some ways, and to get on with the tasks facing our country.

    Personally I think most of the people that have jumped on the BDA bandwagon are simply ex UBP supporters that would never in a million years vote PLP, but think that the UBP is dead in the water. So this is their only option.

  11. Jonathan, I don’t think the Opposition felt it necessary to tiptoe around the allegation with words such as “perception”.
    Apparently the following is what the PLP objected to.We get million dollar contracts that go directly to friends untendered and massive cost overruns with no one held to account.”
    I don’t see anything incorrect about that statement and the UBP probably didn’t either. After all, isn’t Dennis Coreia a close personal friend of the Premier’s? And wasn’t he awarded the multi-million dollar Dockyard pier contract? And was that contract ever put out to tender?

  12. @ Ken – Unfortunately I think you’re absolutely right – the BDA have a very long way to go before they’re worth giving a vote to. However, at least SOMETHING has happened in a political scene which has stagnated our growth as an island for the past 5 years at the very least.

    As you say, the UBP are not viable, and the PLP will ensure that any reincarnation of them will also be branded as same old. It’s politiks 101. Fine.

    The real question is, then, how can we actually get the PLP to perform? Another large capital project comes in at twice the cost, and we, what, talk about it for 5 minutes and then move on.

    There have been more shootings in the past 6 month than the past 20 years combined (well it feels that way to me, apologies if I’m off in stats) and we get this gem from the premier: “Shootings are both a clear threat to social order and a dangerous symptom of the presence of underlying social disorder. My government has been relentless in addressing both.” – Well Dr. Brown I hate to point out the blindingly obvious but if you’d been relentless maybe there wouldn’t be a shooting every week. If that’s what you being relentless accomplishes, then maybe you’re not good enough.

    But there is no alternative. Dr. Brown and his cabinet is the best of the PLP, we’ve been told that ad nauseum by the PLP base. And they’re failing the economy, education, crime, tourism and public projects.

    So what can we do? It seems our current system does not punish poor performance, and the current PLP are reaking the rewards of that system.

  13. @ Ken,

    I understand what you are saying about getting to know the new party.
    I should have explained myself better. I wouldn’t vote blindly for them either.
    My point was, when it comes time to vote again, if this new party isn’t what people want, then I would suggest to boycott your vote. That is exactly how Gandhi and MLK got things accomplished. It is the ONLY way to teach the PLP a lesson. The thought of this scares the pants off of politicians. I will guarantee you if people threaten this, then things WILL change. We have the power, we just feel powerless.

  14. LiF – I agree with some of what you say. I dont think we can blame the PLP government for the social ills that are plaguing our community. Many of these seeds were sown years and years ago. However I wont even go as far as to blame the UBP government. These are social issues that unfortunatley would probably be present regardless of the party in power.

    As far as trying to rid our communities of this behavior, there have been steps taken by this government to try and do this. have they been all successful? no, but there are no guarantees. It is even harder to do when you are dealing with this element and families which suport this element. Are there more things the governmetn can do? Perhaps. But there is also more the Governor can do…like okaying the Government’s plan to bring in outside assistance, but the Governor seems to not think its a problem.

    Sara –
    Boycotting a vote doesnt breed success because everyone is not going to boycott, and therefore whoever gets the majority still wins. Whether there is 10 percent turnout, or 80 percent turnout.

  15. “The words that were struck from the record were pretty slanderous though. I don’t agree with striking them from the record (and I thought parliamentary immunity/priviledge allowed for such comments) but I don’t think the words were well chosen. I would have thought a motion of censure was more appropriate, but I’m going to have to go over parliamentary procedures again. I hate that book…”

    The part in question was inaccurate only so far as it uses the word “friends”. Otherwise it is a valid point and as has been said it is worded no stronger than wording that has been used before by both sides. It’s nothing more than Government flexing its muscles in the House I think and a bit ridiculous to be honest. What does it achieve other than furthering the distrust many have of the government?

  16. the oppositions comments on corruption via croneyism are spot on and for them to be removed without the plp providing more proof that the statement was false is a joke, and prooves why they want no retro active PATI LAW…they guilty as sin and want to forever shield the evidence from view

    and to have one of the chief recipients of the un tendered contracts …zany desilva…. call for the comments to be stricken is also a load of hot steaming bull especially when its fact that contracts have been given out without bidding processes for numerous govt contracts has been the norm under this plp administration. and the recipients have been friends and plp party menbers….so who u lot trying to fool…must be them same asses that think theres accountability in this government…….u lot have wasted close to 200million dollars…the people should revolt

  17. I thought it was ok to say anything you wanted under Privilege…

    I mean, didn’t Dr. Brown slander Dr. Gibbons in the infamous “Racist Dog” speech, when he said (and I’m paraphrasing) that Dr. Gibbons had taken kickbacks when he was Minister of Telecommunications… even though the Ministry hadn’t been created yet?

  18. @ Ken, you are right. Boycotting your vote only works if the majority of people do it. If the majority are not happy with current government, then I suggest to boycott your vote, then things would get done. Just something to think about. It worked for MLK, it can work for us!

  19. Nioe,
    In what way were the words slanderous? As I said earlier, Dennis Correia is a friend of the Premier and has been for a long time – such a good friend in fact that he was best man at Ewart Brown’s wedding. Zane DeSilva was also a good friend of the Premier’s long before Dr. Brown became Premier or Zane went into politics. I therefore don’t have a problem with the UBP claiming that we have seen under this administration multi-million dollar contracts being “awarded” (through the abuse of the tendering process) to friends. It’s a completely fair and accurate statement.
    And of course, even if it wasn’t, MPs have a right to say pretty much whatever they want when speaking on the floor of the House.

  20. Sara,
    the fact is that I dont believe the majority of people are unhappy. They might be unhappy with certain aspects, but not with the government in general, and therefore will not boycott. Especially when someone has to win, and they are not necessarily comfortable with either the UBP or the BDA taking over.

    With regard to the UBP and BDA, at least the UBP have made comments regarding this latest shooting etc. I have yet to see the BDA release any statements concerning this. I feel that while there may be excitement surrounding them, they may miss the boat by taking too long to fully organize. Don’t be fooled, the UBP still has support esp from big business. The majority of the BDA support seems to be from young businessmen, but they may not equate into electoral support.

    i anticipate vigorous debate and some game changers of the next year that will force each party to say where they stand and how they will get bermuda through the tough times. Rhetoric will be less important than results. I have confidence that the government can navigate us through some/most of this, with assistance frm the community. And I also think that the competition from the UBP and BDA will perhaps influence the performance of the PLP government, which is not entirely a bad thing.

  21. I don’t agree with your opinion. I believe that the majority of people are in fact unhappy with the government, but feel powerless to do anything about it.
    Government debt is at an all time ridiculous high and the people know that they will be paying more and more which means they will be taking home less and less if they don’t do something to stop the outrageous government spending.
    Also, after ten years of PLP rule, the public education system is at an all time low. Why is it that a labor party had failed to fix the very sectors of society that their voters rely on? Crime is at an all time high, not that I blame this directly on the government, but they don’t seem to be doing much about it other than blame the governor. Accountability will never happen until voters MAKE them accountable.

  22. Sara,

    i dont know who you are but i believe that we don’t run in the same social circles.
    I do recognize that there are definitely some unhappy people and that they do have valid opinions. Personally I wish we could have fixed the education system by now, but I also remember quite vividly the destruction that was caused, who caused it, and i have a basic understanding of why it was caused.
    To vote out a government you have to be conscious of who you will be voting in…

    Question for you – what are you willing to do to fix some or help fix some of the social ills facing bermuda?

  23. Sorry – the part about social circles was put becuase I was saying that while i do know people that may have issues with certain personalities, certain decisions etc, their support of the PLP government is largely unwavering. And this support was pre and post the formation of the BDA.

  24. Sottee,

    Either you have problems with your eyes and some of your other senses. The Premier’s best man didn’t look at all like Dennis Correia and was quite a bit younger than him. Why would you write something like that?

  25. Ms. Furbert,
    Perhaps my memory’s going! I’m sorry, I may be mistaken, but I’m sure I recall reading in the paper that Dennis Correia was best man at Dr. Brown’s wedding.
    Yes, of course, the papers don’t always get it right and perhaps either they or I am mistaken on this point.
    Regardless, I do understand that Dennis Correia is a longstanding friend of Dr. Brown and I stand by my original statement – that under this Government we have seen multi-million contracts awarded to friends and that the tendering process has been abused in the process. I therefore believe the UBP was perfectly entitled to make those same observations in its Reply to the Throne Speech and can’t undertsand why they were struck from the record.

  26. Sottee,

    Who would have informed you that Dennis Correia is a longstanding friend of Dr. Brown? Why would it not occur to you and others that the reason Dennis Correia was used by the PLP to build the Heritage Wharf and other buildings, was because he was used by the former government and he has the experience and is the best in the field. I personally don’t think that the Premier would consider Dennis Correia a longstanding friend. I guess because of their working relationship they may now be friends.

    By the way, you could very well have read it in “the paper” that Mr. Correia was in Dr. Brown’s wedding. They don’t always write the facts.

  27. Ernest……..lets if Bermudians are savvy enough to revolt during the queens visit when many international eyes will be focused on the country …maximizing the exposure on Bermudas many problems related to poor financial management …inconsistant complience with international best practice connected to standards of governance.

    What do you define revolt as?

  28. Rummy,

    Were you the best man? You and Dennis Correia look alike don’t you?

    Black Press,

    Why don’t you lead the revolt? Let’s see how many people you can get to follow you.

  29. lol@ the great defender…..hows ya party doin in de polls lately?

    we are waiting with baited breath to uncover all of ya cousins back door dealings when pati kicks in.

    enjoy ya partys last yrs in office 🙂

    the revolt against non accountable politicians will not be televised…

    ALL power to the people by any means nessicary

  30. Sottee

    I think I may have misrepresented what I actually meant to say. What it was intended to say was that “friends” was the only word that could be challenged as without basis in fact depending on how someone wished to interpret it. Using the word “incorrect” was a slip of the tongue, or rather the fingers.

    We are actually in agreement more or less. My post was defending the comment, it never should have been struck from the record. I recently posted my opinion on the subject over on the ole’ blog and I’m appalled by what I see as an attempt to silence the opposition and flex government muscle but, I figured I would take a more moderate stance in my previous post.

  31. The real issus GANGWAR is just the beginning gated communities are the primary defense with an armed security guard at the gate just like the one that sleeps at Gombey house.

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