You cannot be serious!

| 04/03/2010

Avert your eyes, children. Turn away, Grandma. These are not exactly glorious days for politics in the Cayman Islands. During challenging times, a nation’s leaders either rise or shrink. Many of ours, it now seems clear, have decided to become tiny, very tiny.

For the wise Caymanians who spent the last couple of weeks ignoring local news, I offer this review of lowlights.

In recent days, some of our MLAs, sober so far as one could tell, actually called for restrictions on private gun ownership to be eased. Yes, that makes perfect sense. Let’s react to a spike in violent crimes by making guns more plentiful. What could possibly go wrong? Yeah, let’s save our criminals the trouble of all that sneaking around to import illegal guns. Just let them steal legal guns from their neighbors. Why should our economy keep losing money to the Jamaican gun smuggling industry anyway? Think of it as a “shop Cayman” initiative.

Some of our MLAs have decided that the green iguana crisis demands immediate action. Refusing to be distracted by the hordes of illiterate children in our midst, growing landfill problems, inadequate infrastructure, and the government’s financial crisis, these leaders have applied laser focus to the lizard issue and will not rest until every green iguana is dead. In fairness, these MLAs are not so much anti-green as pro-blue.

If you are not yet laughing or crying, try this one: Just days ago, anMLA confidently announced in public that the end of the world is near and that we should all prepare for it immediately. Fortunately, no one took him seriously. Everyone is still showing up for work and sending their children to school. But wait, even if no one else does, maybe our politicians really do believe there is no future. Yes, that would explain many of their decisions.

Finally,a hero rose in the North. A straight-shooting man of the people stared down the pesky concept of rules. Defiantly, he struck a blow for vehicular anarchy and lazy people everywhere. Standing tall in the Legislative Assembly, he declared war on clamping and fining for illegal parking. Who among us could resist the powerful case he presented against organized parking lots and compassion for the handicapped? Is it not the right of all true-born Caymanians to park where they please? Handicapped spaces, be damned. Curse every “No Parking” sign that stands between a voter and a sweet spot. Never wilting under the searing heat of reason, logic and law, this politician made it clear that all those who wish to ignore inconvenient rules will never be alone, at least not while he’s in the Legislative Assembly.

You cannot be serious! This is really happening? Now! At this point in our history, these are the things viewed as priorities by our leaders? Green Iguanas and parking! No, really, I’m having a difficult time with this. Do you mean to tell me that when I return home from a shopping trip and have to pay duty on the silk boxers, furry handcuffs, and alligator clips that I purchased in Miami, part of that money goes to pay the salary of these people? I want my money back.

Our government is sinking financially. People are being attacked in the streets by machete-wielding maniacs. Our tourism industry has degraded to daily visits by cattle barges. And some of our leaders are busy working on getting more guns into more hands, plotting national iguana massacres, and defending illegal parking? Can this be real? Is there some sane explanation behind it all? Could it be an elaborate hoax to test us? Maybe they just want to see if anyone is really paying attention to what they say in the Legislative Assembly so they announced all this absurd stuff to gauge our reaction. Yeah, that makes more sense. I want to believe that. Don’t you?

Hey, come to think of it, maybe that MLA who said the world is about to end is on to something. Yeah, I’m not going to make fun of him anymore. Based on what is coming out of the Legislative Assembly these days, he just might know something we don’t.

 

Category: Viewpoint

Comments (33)

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  1. Joe Average says:

    Yeah mon!  I agree with you. Thanks for the laugh!  But also hidden in this viewpoint I sense the same degree of frustration and anger many of us are feeling.  What up?

    First of all we have to come to the realization this situation is not unique to Cayman.  Oh no!  I tried to say in my viewpoint that it seems to be where politics has taken us, and we’ve gone along for the ride.

    Politics as we know it started out alright.  At least it seemed like a good idea. To appoint people to work full time on our behalf, so we could devote our time in working to pay for it all.  But somewhere along the line, it took a wrong turn and became a career. Hell the perks were so good who wouldn’t want it for a career?   Those that chose politics as a career, soon realized there were only a few certain things you had to do to turn it into what we would call an art form.

    One was to try your best to make people think, that in spite of not telling them anything you had some great ideas. Then going to the polls became like a going to a drive-thru.  Your order was placed from a menu you didn’t decide on, someone on the speaker said yeah, we never ask what’s in it. And later you get indigestion. We blame it on eating too much too fast. But it’s the quality of the food designed for mass consumption that really does it to us.

    And we never ask for specifics when it comes to choosing the people who are going to represent us. So why be surprised if they’ve got some other hare brained agenda?  Or ideas that seem to come out of left field?

    Really though…  Who’s fault is it?

    Hard pill to swallow. It’s ours.

    It’s our fault everytime we don’t say "that sounds nice dude"  "But what are you going to do?"  "You see…we don’t want to find out later."

    In other words.  If you or I, or anyone, applied for a job with an enormous salary, with a four year contract, that didn’t have any specifics, and we could sort of make it up. And if we didn’t do a good job, we wouldn’t be fired, we’d just take a salary cut, for the next four years.

    It would be a pretty decent career move.

    Can we change this around?  I think we could quite easily.  Beginning with, asking for specific ideas.  And if they don’t know the specifics during an election they should come back when they do.

    And we’d like to see the books.  Our finances. Not a bunch of bad news later, right now. And it should be mandatory.

    How are you supposed to make an informed decision say during an election, if you have no idea what’s been going on? Are the ideas mentioned working?  Are we doing ok?

    Are we in the hole?? How much? Pretty basic stuff. 

    But then, it doesn’t seem to be allowed. We’re just not bright enough to understand. But we are bright enough to understand it isn’t good.  And they have no idea how it happened.  Unless it was the other guys.

    Yeah mon.

    But instead of tackling the issue of finances, and the direction we’re going.

    They decide to change the color of the cars. Or bring out a new stamp.

    No!

    We have to get smarter.

    We need to ask smarter questions and elect people who are smart enough to answer them. I know they’re out there!

    Think for a second that though they don’t seem to have chosen politics as a career. And why?? 

    Because we let it happen it that way. Can’t do that anymore.  We don’t have time for it.

     

  2. Anonymous says:

    Actually Caymanian Conscience I am serious. Very serious.

  3. Anonymous says:

    Hysterical…and yet sadly true! 

    This article should be emailed to every member of the LA.

  4. Anonymous says:

    This inane and totally inadequate political nonsense will continue until the voting public of Cayman finds the courage to bring the Bush/Tibbetts era of politics to an end.  Knock-about, nonsensical, point-scoring, party politics has brought this country to its knees.  When will Caymanians finally see the light, and vote in a group of trustworthy independants that will work together to clean up the mess left by both the PPM and the UDP?  This place is too small for Punch and Judy style party politics.

    If Premier Bush does not start to think and act straight (or gather around him the right people to help him think and act straight), he could go down as the most reviled leader in Cayman history.  At the moment, I can no see no plinth in Hero’s Square awaiting his effigy.

    • MCF says:

       The sad thing is, the parties have become so powerful (i.e. rich) that even the independents may eventually be won (bought) over. Case in point: Elio Solomon. I wish I may, I wish I might.

  5. Anonymous says:

    Excellent piece!!!! What is really sad is these are the calibre of politicians that we are stuck with who are supposed to be coming up with ideas to get us out of the absolute mess that we find ourselves in!!!

    Other than Rolston(although this pension holiday nonsense has me questioning his abilities) I really cannot think of anyone else that illustrates the bare minimum of expectations of someone in a leadership position and responsible for a portfolio of millions of dollars!!!!

    Once again the onus is on us the voters to make intelligent choices and not focus on what we can get but what’s best for the country in the long run. More importantly once they have been elected we have to hold them accountable for the decisions they make!!!

     

     

    • Lachlan MacTavish says:

      I believe many wonderful individuals will not run for office because of how we, the voters, have allowed the process to morph over the years. If you look at the history we had selfless leaders as MLA’s making very little money leading the country. Then we traversed into the "Bahamas blue collar worker MLA" still making little money. Then the MLA’s jacked up the pay and it became a way for people to become millionares. To get the votes all kinds of shannigans produced the votes necessary in the DISTRICTS. So really qualified individuals said …nope not me. Now we have what we have and the reason why I believe the only answer is one man/woman one vote no districts.

      • Anonymous says:

        Thurs 03/04 –  22:25  with all due respect to you Mr. L..McT.. I was here a long timebefore you ever thought of coming to Cayman. I won’t  agree with you that all those former politicians were ‘selfless’ angels as you described them, they all had their faults and looked out for No.1 and their friends from way back then! You do need to learn a few things still. Try to get some stories from the generations that were here before you knew Cayman. You may be surprised! Some of us grew up here! Some were no better than what we have today – why are you degrading Caymanians whom you pretend to care so much about?

        your quote: "To get the votes all kinds of shannigans produced the votes necessary in the DISTRICTS. So really qualified individuals said …nope not me." 

        What exactly is ‘really qualified’ who are you really talking about?? Where are they??

  6. Commons Sense 101 says:

    Sounds like Dave Martin’s material for his next Run Down play.

  7. Nonnie Mouse says:

    "Who among us could resist the powerful case he presented against organized parking lots and compassion for the handicapped?" 

    At the time of the constitutional negotiations with the UK both the PPM and UDP fought to block rights protections for the disabled because the same provision might, just might, have given rights to homosexuals.

    We know the Hazzard must be straight because no gay man would be seen dead in those shirts he wears. . . .

  8. Anonymous says:

    HOORAY! Excellent article…

    You should have added that the very first thing that was sooooo important was changing the name of Pirate’s Week.

  9. Anonymous says:

    very well written…..ezzard miller should be made to read it out loud the next time he’s on radio

  10. Wake me when it's over says:

    You forgot one thing….after much head scratching…they finally found out where all the petrol was going!!  But someone had to point it out to them.

  11. Anonymous says:

    Politicians don’t have the answers and are trying to appease the public with solutions to these insignificant problems.

     

    We need NEW POLITICIANS NOW!!!

  12. Anonymous says:

    With these people in charge we are up XXXX creek without a paddle!!!

  13. A REALIST says:

    Utter nonsense.

    Unless the writer of this uninformed piece can point to one instance of a licensed gun owner or weapon being implicated in a firearms related offense this piece is based on nothing but his imagination. Not reality.

    The facts are that gun crimes are committed by persons who purchase them illegally simply because their origins/ownership will allow them to remain anonymous.

    Stop playing to an uninformed gallery and write based on facts. There has been responsible gun ownership in these islands for hundreds of years. The fact that some "come-latelys" are terrified by the thought of any "natives" owning weapons is irrelevant. 

    • Rorschach says:

      I know of several instances where lawful gun owners had their firearms stolen from their homes….that none of these firearms were recovered and positively linked to them after the commission of a crime does not mean that they were not used in them..There are still several of these firearms which have NEVER been recovered!!

      While I will agree that legal gun owners are, for the most part, very responsible, I do not think that granting more gun licenses for the sole reason of "self defence" is the answer…

      More needs to be done to stop the flood of illegal firearms coming into this country via drug dories from neighboring countries…

    • Anonymous says:

      You can’t really be this stupid. The reason there have not been high numbers of gun crimes committed by people using legally owned guns is because Cayman has always had very strict gun ownership laws. Very few people have guns in their homes here. This is a good thing! Why would anyone who cares about crime in Cayman want to change that?

      Only a reckless fool would support a politician who wants to change our laws and make guns easier to obtain by more people.

      More legal guns in Cayman homes obviously will lead to more guns on the streets in the hands of criminals because legal guns get stolen and become illegal guns.

      What in the world makes you think that burglars won’t take guns from the homes they rob? More legal guns in law-abiding homes would lead inevitably to more guns in the hands of criminals.

      Getting it yet? And please don’t insult anyone’s intelligence by saying that the guns will be "locked up". Yeah, the front door of the house the criminal just broke into to steal the gun was locked too. Little lockboxes won’t keep legal guns out of the hands of criminals.

      Here’s a stat for you:

      Average number of firearm thefts that occur every year in the US: 341,000
      (Source: US Dept. of Justice, Bureau of Justice Statistics, Guns and Crime, 4/94)

       

      • Heather W says:

        I am from the US and while that number of 341,000 may be published in writing do you really know what is a firearm theft.  I will tell you exactly what it is.  It is called a straw purchase!!!  A person (usually a woman) who has no criminal record goes and buys a gun and sells it to a gang banger.  They pay her a lot of money to do this. She calls and reports it stolen!  That is what is happening.  It is a fact!  In order to get rid of the crime in Cayman, the authorities need to be able to shoot those who have the guns.  If they don’t want to use firearms than they should be using some high powered tazer guns.  It works!  By reading the recent articles it appears as though some of the people that are committing these crimes have been in trouble before and released.  This will continue to happen until Cayman tightens their reins on these beasts.  The amount of crime that is taking place on the Island is unacceptable.  Some say US has horrible crime which it does, but if you take the percentage Cayman is catching up.  For only a small Island, the crime is starting to get out of control.  Guns are not the answer but citizens can help.  Don’t be afraid.  The shootings that are occurring seem to be the gang members trying to prove themselves, or recruit new bangers, or retaliation.  Wake up Cayman! 

        • Anonymous says:

          A person (usually a woman) who has no criminal record goes and buys a gun and sells it to a gang banger.

          Yep, I’m sold, I can see why the above means we should have less gun control.

        • Mango eater says:

          Oh Heather, my dear soul, you are making the case for the side you are arguing against.

          You said: "[In the US] A person who has no criminal record goes and buys a gun and sells it to a gang banger."

          Okay… then we shouldn’t make it easy for people to go and buy guns that they then might sell to gang bangers. Right?

          And by the way, those "beasts" you refer to are our children. These gang bangers are the defective offspring of a screwed-up society that buries its head in the sand or prays when it should be focused on real solutions. They are the product of a society that elects greedy power-mad bufoons when it desperately needs intelligent and selfless leadership.

          We must reject politicians who are so reckless and clueless that they would advocate less restrictions on private gun ownership in the Cayman Islands. They are either stupid or willing to do anything to appease a few people in their districts at the expense of their entire country’s safety.

          By the way, we all know why gun nuts love love guns so much, right? Not wanting to be rude here, let’s just say that in many cases it has something to do with manhood compensation issues.

          Lock and load, Pee Wees.

  14. Anonymous says:

    Yes Cayman Politics seem to becoming a soap opera.  I find myself saying "did he really just say that" or "are you joking?!?!" a lot when I read these articles.

  15. Anonymous says:

    Excellent post. It should be required reading. For those whom the school system and our politicians failed so badly in the past couple of decades, no doubt while they were busy thinking how they could spend our money on enriching their personal lives, I hope that someone will take the time to read it to you if you are unable to read it yourself.

     

  16. Anonymous says:

    ezzard miller has been involved in all of the above…i’m not sure which is worse, his backward expat bashing or his backward small town mentality in the la?

  17. Anonymous says:

    and some people say we need more people like ezzard….zzzzzz

  18. Very witty Oscar!! says:

    Thanks.. I needed the laugh!

  19. TennisAce says:

     I was wondering when someone was going to speak out about this.  Thanks CC for at least putting the issues out there that our LAs consider to be important.  In short:  we dont give a damn about that the economy is in ruins and people are taking their business elsewhere:  I want a gun to protect myself from these iguanas and parking clampers as the world is coming to an end.  Sounds about right.  Hilarious 

  20. Rorschach says:

    I think you are eloquently putting into words, what the majority of us are thinking…THANK YOU!!!

  21. Anonymous says:

    Well said.  I can’t believe they are wasting time on such inane matters.

    Never mind the iguanas and the wheel clamps – fix the damn economy, stop the crime, and get some forward vision.   These guys can’t see past the end of their noses…

  22. CSI says:

    A very well written and entertaining commentary.  And sadly, it’s true.

  23. whodatis says:

    Food for thought people.