The Bahamas could use the office of a public commentator. That person would have the responsibility to comment on the contradictions and nonsense that occurs in public life and public policy. He or she should be paid by the state to point out to us how we do not live by the creeds that we say we want to live by. It can be done in a declarative way or there could be the use of sarcasm and satire.
The FNM government is particularly vulnerable to this. The level of hypocrisy and incompetence and sheer bloody mindedness is mind boggling. What is so interesting about them is how they like to get up on their moral high horse about corruption and morality; they are so much on the straight and narrow and everyone can see that they are as crooked as the day is long. There is no not one moral bone in their bodies. They are simply motivated by power and money. They do not care one wit for people.
The reason we got to thinking this is that the Minister of Transport Renward Wells, who is a master at double speak and political prostitution, announced to the country that as of 7 October 2019, a law passed by the Parliament to restrict among other things the use of cell phones while you are driving is to come into force. That means that as of tomorrow if you are caught by the cops talking or texting while driving they can give you a ticket and charge you with an offence.
Also if they demand your licence, you have to produce it or your can get locked up. This last one is a bunch of cow manure. But our intrepid Parliamentarians duly passed this crap into law.
Of course, most people will say well what alas is wrong with that law on cell phones, after all its for our safety. They will tell us how people who drive their cars and text end up in accidents, many of them fatal to themselves and worse to other people. They will say there is no constitutional problem because this is in the public interest so it is fine int his case to encroach on the freedom of the Bahamian driver to driver and text and to use the phone.
We probably agree with you that in this case the nanny state is probably right but the point we make there is that we citizens allow these encroachments on our civil liberties and no one questions or asks what we are doing.
We hope someone challenges this law just for the sake of it on the basis that it is unconstitutional. We have a right to drive our cars and text and to use the telephone if we damn well wish to. Yes why don’t we do that and show this worthless government how we can tie them up in knots just for the hell of it.
Where is that drama queen Fred Smith when we need him. Oh yes, he is almost dying in a hospital in Italy. We do not wish him well.
But seriously folks. Let’s look at this. The trial of Shane Gibson is going on now and the FNM Government is fulfilling its political agenda to persecute former PLP Ministers. Their case does not amount to anything even resembling dog do do for the moment but much of the case took place in secret. You will remember that Mr. Gibson’s lawyers were able to show that the crown tampered with the evidence they are presenting and asked that the whole case be thrown out because the evidence was manifestly unreliable.
The intrepid Indra Charles who is the judge who tried to tell Parliament what it could and could not say, shut the whole public commentary down with an unconstitutional ruling that the press could not cover the case. However, The Punch despite this bad order by the courts was able to write a story pretending that it knew what Mr. Gibson’s strategy was going to be in the case. Nothing done. Or if anything was done the follow up judge who is presiding on the case, whose husband is an FNM operative, did not allow any of the preliminary applications to be reported either.
The press in The Bahamas who was shouting to the rafters about press freedom and cussing the PLP for entering secret deals which were not secret at all except in the imagination of Candia Dames, has said not a damn word about secrecy now. They didn’t even challenge the order of the Judge. They accepted meekly and went on the next thing.
We need a public writer, a public intellectual who will be able to call out his nonsense for what it is and tell us about our asses for allowing this stuff to go down.
Number of hits for the week ending Saturday, 5th October, 2019 up to midnight: 128,963;
Number of hits for the month of September up to Monday, 30th September, 2019 up to midnight: 685,466;
Number of hits for the month of October up to Saturday, 5th October, 2019 up to midnight: 79,087;
Number of hits for the year 2019 up to Saturday, 5th October, 2019 up to midnight: 7,245,686.