The Politics of Excuse and Blame by Henderson N. Bovell: Letter to the Editor
The DLP promised “change” but all that Barbadians have since been getting, is: “the politics of excuses; complaining and blame.” Allegations of doing things in a “phased” manner, is merely ‘phase two’ in a never-ending-series of excuses being used by the DLP to conceal its time-wasting and as many are now saying – ‘to downplay its “incompetence.’ This is what politics in Barbados has come to! As a further example, while that political stunt (purporting to be solving the Alexandra School issue) was taking place, the Barbados economy was flatling. The prospects of ever building a sustainable economy, under DLP rule – remains distant.
The DLP’s idea of a society seems to be one where families and ordinary people within communities are getting weak and poor, daily. Maybe that explains why by the third year the DLP was ‘in power,’ the rate of poverty in Barbados jumped from 8.7% to 19.3% and unemployment from about 6.7% to an alarming 15%. The accuracy of that 12% statistic, which two arms of the same Government are wrestling about – is even puzzling to those who lost their jobs and are now unemployed.
But, whether unemployment is 12% or the 15% (many in communities across Barbados feel) the point is that under DLP rule and in just four years – unemployment has risen alarmingly and too many now find themselves on the bread-line as a result of the bad decision; poor judgment and flawed policies of the DLP. This Government was supposed to bring positive change, and a ‘pathway to progress,’ not rob Barbadians out of their happiness; steal their hope or punish their success!
The national sadness in Barbados is being caused by the fact that the DLP has severely eroded the confidence and purchasing power of Barbadians. Those who are still fortunate to have a job today – know that as long as the DLP is the government, they could be on the bread-line by next weekend. Look man – ‘people brek’ and the DLP’s taxation and other flawed policies is to blame!
Without money to spend, Barbadians cannot buy goods and services – hence businesses are under tremendous pressure to keep people employed, as the DLP begged them to do. This is compounded by high overheads and energy cost, caused again by a flawed DLP petroleum policy and in this vicious DLP cycle – the economy contracts! Those who have already lost their jobs in what seems like a carefully manufactured but extremely hostile DLP environment – now find themselves victims of early retirement, even at age 35 and in circumstances where the national retirement age is about 67.
But while the DLP complains and make excuses, the facts are that the rate of decline in our country is unmatched in any other developed economy, including Guyana, which never went into recession. With the middle class now facing extinction and the poor on life-support with the DLP (figuratively) threatening to pull the plug, daily (a victim of its own flawed energy policy, which is resulting in high electricity cost) public officers are being told about a wage freeze, while senior citizens cannot get their money out of Clico, despite a promise by the DLP. These are the same senior citizens the DLP promised to protect in their golden age.
The seeds of the disastrous position Barbados now finds itself in – were sown within its first 100 day in office, when the DLP increased the price of diesel by 77%. And, despite a promise to reduce the cost of living, it then introduced an inflationary budget, though which it increased taxes and fees and snatched some $108m from the pockets Barbadians. A heartless DLP even attempted to rob the piggy-bank of children by threatened to introduce a “DLP-Bicycle-Tax,” in 2008. Why then should anyone be surprised that the Government seems unwilling to inconvenience anybody, in the interest of the children at the Alexandra School.