The Faces of Corruption

| 15/05/2011

The 2009 Constitution, which one very prominent politician has repeatedly indicated he did not support, created a Commission for Standards in Public Life tasked, “to support and enhance democracy in the Cayman Islands and to promote the highest standards of integrity and competence in public life in order to ensure the prevention of corruption or conflicts of interest.” Events since 2009 suggest that if this body exists in more than name, then it has a great deal of work to do.

It is time for an open and very public debate regarding the standards which our politicians will be required to meet by the electorate. Politicians simply cannot be allowed to set and enforce their own standards, particularly given what we has occurred in recent times. Our country is far too precious. We cannot allow it to be bartered for a container load of appliances or short haul flights on private jets.

Ideally, the Standards Commission would publish a discussion document setting out a detailed draft set of explicit standards and would then lead an open public debate on what standards politicians ought to live up to. Unfortunately, there is little evidence that there is any will to do so. Challenging the actions of politicians, corrupt or otherwise, requires personal strength. In an environment polluted by corruption, patronage, and threats, it also requires sufficient determination to face the potential retribution which corrupt politicians almost always threaten in order to maintain the flow of illicit benefits for which they and their cronies entered public life.

Despite the absence of an official debate, a debate is nevertheless taking place. Corruption and patronage are being challenged in the media, at family gatherings and on the marl road. Buffoonery and corruption are mocked in online commentaries. These challenges are coming from many sources. Young educated Caymanians are appalled at seeing their futures sold off. Middle aged Caymanians are tired of seeing their hard earned money wasted on extravagance, and older Caymanians remember when public minded individuals freely gave of their time to serve in the Legislative Assembly for no pay other than the chance to do what was right for their society. The challenges, at first ignored, are now being met by politicians and their hangers-on who feel that their private interests are threatened.

Not all politicians are corrupt, either in Cayman or elsewhere in the world. Wherever it happens in the world, overt corruption can be identified with relative ease by using no more than common sense. Suspect politicians, their apprentices, their handlers and their cronies seek the ability to manipulate public policy, public procurement and public largess for their own private gain. Any one of the following acts should ring alarm bells and send up red flags.

They spend public funds for the private benefit of themselves and their supporters, and then justify their actions by saying that some other politician of equally challenged morality did the same thing at some point in the past. They prevent sustainable development in favour of poorly thought out schemes which enrich politicians and their cronies in the short term. They are happy to offer up the environment for destruction for their 30 pieces of silver. They fabricate the existence of non-existent provisions in a constitution in order to justify their predatory excess spending from the public purse. They ignore the time honoured separation of the judicial, administrative and political branches of government in order to get whatever they or their cronies or handlers want. They make completely irrelevant comparisons with supposed past events to suggest that they are justified in ignoring the rules and ignoring the separation between public benefit and private benefit whenever paving something will get them a vote or two.

They present themselves in courts of justice to leave no doubt about which way those entrusted with decisions are to render their decisions. They ignore the requirements of procurement laws. They trade favours and give concessions which cost the public purse in exchange for money or property or contracts which provide private benefit. They appoint persons to public authorities and boards in a system of barter for private gain. They ignore elections laws and the provisions of their constitutions. They rail against freedom of the press and freedom of information which might expose corrupt practices. They threaten to use the authority they have been givento do public good, to change laws so as to silence journalists and deny the public access to information which may disclose corruption. They use public funds to provide cronies with high paying non-jobs as “advisors” and “consultants”. They pay for the expenses of their election campaigns by awarding “non-jobs” and “no real purpose” contracts paid for with tax dollars once they are elected. They use public funds to hire the relatives of supposedly neutral decision makers to do “non-jobs” in order to ensure that the media is stifled and that corruption is less likely to be exposed in the proceedings of democratic institutions. In short, corrupt politicians are a threat to every society and should be labelled and shunned as such.

Corruption is corruption wherever it may be found. A great deal of work has been done in identifying corrupt practices in democracies around the world. We have the option of looking at how corrupt practices and abuse of public office have been defined and dealt with in Commonwealth countries including the United Kingdom, Canada, Australia, New Zealand and elsewhere. We have the option of looking at the public work of international organisations such as Transparency International. We have clear statements from world leaders such as Kofi-Annan, former Secretary General, United Nations, who wrote that corruption "debases democracy, undermines the rule of law, distorts markets, stifles economic growth, and denies many their rightful share of economic resources …”

We also have the words of the current UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-Moon, who has written, “Corruption undermines democracy and the rule of law.  It leads to violations of human rights.  It erodes public trust in government. It can even kill.” We also have concrete examples of how non-corrupt politiciansact, in relation to judicial proceeding and otherwise, in democracies around the world.

In the absence of any discussion document from the Standards Commission, set out below is one potential list of questions which hopefully will widen the public debate of what constitutes a corrupt political practice and who might be corrupt. Any politician engaged in corrupt practice is corrupt and should not be permitted to hold any public office. It is as simple as that. Keeping that in mind we need to ask ourselves the following;

Is it a corrupt practice for a politician to steal, waste or otherwise use public funds for personal benefit?

Is it a corrupt practice for a politician to use public funds to directly or indirectly buy votes?

Is it a corrupt practice for a politician to directly or indirectly interfere in judicial proceedings?

Is it a corrupt practice for a politician to directly or indirectly sell or barter appointments to public authorities or public boards?

Is it a corrupt practice for a politician to directly or indirectly provide duty, tax or other concessions which cost the public purse in exchange for direct or indirect personal gain?

Is it a corrupt practice for a politician to directly or indirectly use public funds to manipulate notionally independent decision makers in our democratic institutions?

Is it a corrupt practice for a politician to directly or indirectly intimidate or victimise civil servants who refuse to collaborate in corrupt or unethical activities?

Is it a corrupt practice for a politician to directly or indirectly award “non-jobs” at public expense as payment for political support or work done in political campaigns?

Is it a corrupt practice for a politician to directly or indirectly accept kickbacks from developers or financial institutions granted favourable decisions or contracts by the political arm of government?

There are many other questions which also need to be explicitly asked and explicitly answered in order for the Cayman Islands to begin to prosper as a corruption free society. It is also likely that we will need to re-write some of our laws relating to corruption and abuse of public office as the ones our politicians have enacted offer too much latitude to the corrupt and insufficient punishment. We need to think of systemic political corruption as the form of organised crime which it is and we need to treat it the way such a cancer should be treated.

For far too long we have been naive in relation to what motivates some who aspire to political life, and we have been too willing to turn a blind eye when a politician "took a lil piece for his seff". It should be no wonder that some of them now think that they, the politicians and their cronies, are entitled to everything with the public being left with not even a "lil piece" of the benefits flowing through this country. The standard of politician we have been willing to accept has been far too low in the case of some, and we have not valued the honesty and integrity of other politicians enough.

Hopefully as we go forward as a society, every person will look at each questionable action of a politician and will ask, “Why is this being done, and who is benefiting?” The more these questions are asked and the more forceful we are in letting politicians know that corrupt practices will not be tolerated, the less common corruption will be.  In 2 years or less we will have the opportunity to vote for politicians who have not shown themselves to be corrupt. In the time leading up to that election we need to shine as much light on corrupt practices as possible. That is the best hope for the long term future of this country.

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Comments (59)

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  1. Anonymous says:

    Whilst I agree with the majority of the comments posted under this Viewpoint, the interesting part is that so many people are upset with the ongoing corruption, in my experience however, so many of those people who are upset are the ones who eagerly rush to take advantage of certain connections, handouts or favors in an effort to get ahead when it suit them.

    Think about it – is it perhaps us who are facilitating all of this foolishness going on to a certain degree?

  2. Joe Bananas says:

    Of course it is corrupt.  Any moral person will tell you so.  In any country of the world.  Will the people of the country let them get away with it?  That is the difference between Cayman and most developed countries.  They do it because they can.  The people of Cayman have a ways to go yet before they are ready for change to real democracy.  Right now they are learning the lessons of why and why not.  Currrent leadership is a great tool in the why not category.  Watching your hard earned money being spent on things you cannot see is another. Courage Cayman.  the time to fight for what is really yours is coming.

  3. Captain Jack says:

    Cayman is corrupt.  Riddled with it.  Nothing of significance can happen in Cayman outside of the financial services industry without favours, backscratching, employment ofrelatives or worse.  There is almost an unwritten rule that as long as the offshore business and the Courts are clean, anything goes anywhere else – call it Jim Bodden's legacy to Cayman.  But now it is certainly getting worse.

  4. da-wa-u-get says:

    What is the difference between driving from the Butterfield roundabout towards 7 mile beach (past the Dump) and, listening to the announcements of the latest projects proposed by the Premier?
    Answer: No difference, we all know there’s something rotten going on nearby!

    And where is the Governor's responsibility in all this, Good Governance and all that?

  5. Anonymous says:

    The current Constitution is seriously flawed in many regards. Politicians see themselves as free to pay for Christmas lights and personal servants from the public purse, and also free to cripple the intended safeguards which might keep their grubby paws out of the cookie jar.

     

    The implementation of the Office of the Premier and the other changes which gave more power to our politicians should have been conditional on the PRIOR implementation (with necessary guarantees of appropriate funding) of the anti-corruption agencies such as the Anti-Corruption Commission and theCommission for Standards in Public Life which are obviously needed to limit the latitude of cleptocrats.

    • Anna says:

      I don't understand how Kurt, Alden, and his team, could have left us with such an incomplete Constitution and say it was the best thing they did for us?  The document resembles a landlord's agreement with no ensured democracy. Can someone with a bit of intelligence answer my question why they would leave us with such immaterial document?!  I would like to know the run-down!

      • Anonymous says:

        I seem to recall that Caymanians voted to accept this constitution with a vote. Guess you might have liked to read it first before voting YES!

         

      • Anonymous says:

        Sadly – the Constitution was a compromise – only what Mr. Bush was willing to agree with got in.

      • Anonymous says:

        these are not what you would call… smart people

      • Rafaelle says:

        Well you see bobo we have to take our time and smoke two cigarettes and drink one bottle of liquor and check out the chickdeees, well get back to u later Gone Fishing! after yeah get back, you Cook the "Rundown"then. Constitution is the breadkind and democracy is the dumbling after you eat that, you go sleep right in the LA Now you know?boy stop asking fool fool questions before Mckeeva get upset.

      • cayman stew says:

        i think they had no choice but do what the governor told them, remember the document was crafted behind closed doors, and it was deliberately ratified on the same day of elections. hence, the people had no chance to fully educate themselves as to what was contained therein. i also recall how kurt was rushing the process

  6. Anonymous says:

    I think it is completely obvious that we have become a lawless society! The only time any law is enforced or upheld is when somebody is murdered or when somebody is caught dealing drugs.

    This is the outcome when people are trying to take a short cut and bending the rules and regulations has become the norm. Connections are used for any and everything and over the years people have gotten too eager to rub elbows with the ones who can dish out favors when needs be.

    Why inflate someone's ego just because they have been elected to some position and are floating a boat up at Rumpoint? So many times I have observed those people falling over each other because they have gotten caught up in the "see and be seen" game! People ended up selling themselves out, just because somebody may have helped them at some stage to get their house plans passed more quickly at planning or got a work permit pushed through faster etc. I am sorry to say that we all have given this power to the politicans for a short gain and we have sold ourselves up completely.

    If we want to uphold the law, we also need to be prepared to follow it every time and not just when is suits and when it doesn't try to call in a favor!

  7. tim ridley says:

    It is very interesting that neither this viewpoint nor, as far as I can see, any of the comments actually mentions the Anti Corruption Law (AC Law) or the Anti Corruption Commission (Commission). This says volumes about the total failure to-date of the powers that be to implement the ACC Law and the Commission itself. 

    The AC Law has a number of significant flaws in it, that the past PPM and current UDP Governments have chosen to ignore. But that is no excuse for not getting the Commission up and running. And this means a qualified staff, physical facilities and other necessary resources. 

    The ex officio Chairman of the Commission is the Police Commissioner. He reports to the Governor. Surely, they should have no difficulty in securing the resources to do what is required.

    • Anonymous says:

      Nonsense. There are no resources available to suppress corruption because the government is confronted by dire emergencies such as the urgent need for tax dollars to be spent paving potential supporters private driveways, hiring personal servants for politicians, paying for politicians to travel the world enjoying a five star life style with large numbers of family, friends and assorted cronies, and other critical things? Where are your priorities?

    • Anonymous says:

      Could you possibly believe that this government would spend even 5 cents educating the electorate about the evilsof corruption?

    • Anonymous says:

      The fact that the government's official Anti-Corruption website still indicates that the former Auditor General, Mr. Dan Duguay, is a member of the Anti-Corruption Commission, (although he left something like a year ago), confirms that there is no practical reason for anyone to consider the Anti-Corruption Commission at this time.

       

    • Anonymous says:

      Duck – we are gonna be in a mess come next election if we gotta find representatives based on your criteria.  On second thoughts, a government without politicians, hmmm …….

      • Anonymous says:

        The last government chose to bring in a new advanced constitution which gave more power to politicians even though the people were not demanding or even asking for it.  Our previous Constitution provided a much more balanced situation. This is what happens when you get a few well placed people constantly lobbying for change and a huge PR campaign set in motion to convince the people to vote yes in a referndum.  The Constitution was changed to give more power to politicians because that is what the politicians demanded.

        • Anonymous says:

          Actually the majority of the electorate voted to bring in the Constitution. That was clearly a mistake given what the Premier has been doing since appointed. We need far greater constraints on our politicians and we need to be able to get rid of the rogue ones for more easily.

  8. Naya Boy on Bobby Cay says:

    Those who condone this corruption are just as bad or worse than those who perpetrate it Yes Mr A Duckpond it is sure funny how some are condemned by our so called establishment yet others who have done worse are given titles and accolades and honorable mention and because they have put themselves and others in such a good financial & political positions of influence to the detriment of their very own people, they can now run around here men of reverence and influence of the most excelent order. In factwhen you look at and into the current leaders you will find this same almost genetic inherited trait implant into their whole thought process a little less subtled than their pass mentors. Oh yes AD so long as you played ball with the crown and the byes at FCO you could destroy who and what you wanted in the OT’s And woe be tied you interfered with one of their children’s financial interest in the colonies hell’s fury be upon you. This longstanding imbalance and situation has raised some innevitable and terrible little abominations and almost demonic elements in our little society here today. Corruption is one and like your Tea it is well steeped into the fabric of Cayman society it is now become an external power source for the political and financial machinery that run this place.Those who have tried to stop or fight its onslaught bear the life long wounds of either being destroyed or ostracise by its enormous reach and it stifling presence and it’s ability to absorb and consume most things in its path. It is said that only the true hypocrites piss down our backs and tell us that it is raining. Young Caymanians need to make a stand now against this overwhelming force now confronting and threatening our very existence. Please stop crying for the UK to save us.

    • Anonymous says:

      Cayman's relationship to the UK is like an adult child living rent-free in the back room, who emerges periodically to tell their parents they suck and announce "Oh yeah, we're out of Doritos".

    • Anonymous says:

      Naya Boy on Bobby Cay, I am very glad I am not married to you or living with you in any other kind of relationship since you have a very tiring form of verbal diarrhea. Try swallowing some punctuation.

      • Naya boy says:

        Aaah yes anon back to the primal gloom where life began and to my mothers womb i must return a man. Not to be born again but to remain, in a School of Darkness to learn what it means, the things unseen. You are simply blinded by your own fate?

    • Dick Shaugneary says:

      Cayman's answer to James Joyce.

  9. Lachlan MacTavish says:

    Duck……great commentary. Very well thought out and spot on.

    Cayman must finally accept that one politician has over 20 years morphed our political system for personal gain and power. That Cayman deserves better, our children deserve better. The blind followers accepting public money are just as guilty and should not be ignored. 

    One individual and followers will bring down a wonderful country if left alone. The very poor, short sighted, self serving decision making has a solid track record now being uncovered by the public and the dedicated media. 

    The public and the media must continue to ask for answers, accountability, transparency and expose conflicts of interest so the voters will finally understand what we have created. We must demand better for the country and continue to do so until the elections and continue until there is change.

    What we are getting has slowly brought our wonderful country down and you can no longer expect someone else to make the change, you can no longer be satisfied making money and ignoring the huge political leadership problems that we have.

    Grow some coconuts and do something. Keep pressuring until Caymanians make the right voting decision and eliminate the present group of self serving over paid politico's.

     

     

  10. Anonymous says:

    Recently the head of the Civil Service Association confirmed that civil servant were victimised for any, real or perceived, political association that was contrary to the ruling party.  In an earlier comment  Mr Ezzard Miller has also confirmed that independant politicians are also victimised and more, he indicates that the current business community is supportive of a corrupt government as it furthers their individual private interests.  How do we, the silent majority, curb this wave of victimisation and corruption? The only altenative available to us is to resor to our legal system and the Rule of Law.  Recently I was appalled to see the blatent intimidation of our jurors by the mass attendance in court of the MLAs from the UDP party.  While, they may ostensibly claim that they were not in violation of any law and that they have a right, as indeed does any member of the public, to sit in the public gallery in support of a 'political brother'. The fact remains that in an environment where their is official confirmation of victimisation against any evidence of dissent, their presence in court served to intimidate the jurors XXXX  How could justice be truly served in such a politically charged environment? The Court, and specifically the Chief Justice, has the discretion to order that certain individuals be excluded from the public gallery.  If, as has been strongly sought by Mr Masters, the DPP decides to pursue a retrial, I sincerely hope the the Chief Justice sees fit to exercise his discretion to limit the intimidation of the jurors by excluding MLAs from the public gallery.
     

     
    • Lachlan MacTavish says:

      If a street wise individuals could control say a district, some politicians, CAL employees and the CS you could get a conch shell elected in Cayman.

  11. Anonymous says:

    Its pretty obvious that Corruption in Grand Cayman has been part of life from way back. XXXX  Cayman has relied on the old tried and true "So and so did it so I can do it" for so long that it is very hard for the population to even think about a time when they all do not have to deal with life this way. The only tried and true way of dealing with this is education of the next generation. But because of the current government mandated education policy of NO ONE CAN BE SMARTER THAN ME it will get much worse before it even starts to get better.  And the only way it will get better is to do things the right way instead of the old Caymanian way.

    • Jacky boatside from oldbush says:

      Look a yonder i see a whole of pile of complainers a wonder, wait awhile because UDP will soon arrive in style I will see you guys later because all we have here is a bunch of playa haters.Remember now you whiners free cheese is only found in rat traps. Please remember that a government big enough to give you everything you want is also big enough to take away everything you have.

      • O'Really says:

        Plagiarism is just another face of corruption, so your failure to credit Gerald Ford for your last sentence fits well with the topic of the day, playa!

      • Anonymous says:

        thank you very much about proving my point about education, what passes for education and the lack of education in Grand Cayman and what kind of constituents are the results.  Can't take away what you never had.  Can't understand it if you have never experianced it.  

  12. Anonymous says:

    Those who go along with and keep quiet about the actions of corrupt politicians who are looting this country are no different from those who keep quiet about the gun thugs who are robbing honest people with guns. Now I see why corrupt politicians refuse to do anything about making our laws tougher on the gangstas – it is professional courtesy.

  13. nauticalone says:

    Very well said!

    This week i have been so embarrassed, to have seen the intentional heavy-handed "show of supportfor a political brother", in and around, an open court of law.

    Surely any ethical professional with the ability to be objective can see how such a show of powerful political force would have impacted most, or all jurors, and other persons in the court. When has any court ever seen such a spectacle?

    Especially from a Govt. Leader that publicly states he is not for FOI and disrespectfully berates anyone who would dare ask any questions of him, which no doubt leaves many feeling threatened and with the message of "beware of retribution" (behaving more akin to a Dictator than the Premier of a BOT).

    And just how is it that the Governor intend to bring about "Good Governance"? Surely it will take more than swimming about, jogging and cutting some ribbons and making the odd appearance for some other "good cause" eh!

    We have a long, long way to go to bring about "Professional Standards in Public Life"! The messages that many in Cayman have been seeing for too long now are not good, not ethical, not professional, not equal, not fair and speak volumes to where we find ourselves today.

  14. Anonymous says:

    An exceptionally well written view point. I agree with everything you have written and as an older Caymanian I also offer my support in any way I can assist in ridding Cayman of the corruption which is rotting the fabric of our society. Those previously honest people who have chosen to run with and continue to associate themselves with the obviously corrupt must also be removed from office as a lessen to those who may be tempted in the future to choose power over honesty and public service. 

  15. Anonymous says:

    I hope you are running in the next election….you will get my vote for sure.  I wholeheartedly agree with everthing you have said and I must add it is very refreshing to see such an intelligently written and well thought out piece from an obviously well educated or at least well versed perspective.  Thank you!  

  16. Ezzard Miller says:

    Mr. Duckpond has raised some valid concerns on which action needs to be taken XXXX

    However he has not included in his essay one important matter and that is the victimization and ostracizing of honest politicians and their families by political groups and their supporters in particular and politicion who dares to standup to either political party for what is right by Caymanians.

    Honest politicians particularly in the last two decades are "black balled" so to speak by the friends and supporters of the ruling political party at the time from getting jobs for which they are qualified either as a favour or out of fear of themselves being victimized or punished in some economic fashion. These actions act as fertilizer for corrupt politicains and provide them with protection and support for their rule of terror and victimization and getting the "kick backs" in as many forms as we can immagine.

    Unfortunately in this new Cayman society which we have allowed to develop and foster by inviting politicians, particularly those who happen to be in the Cabinet to fancy luches in our corporate boardrooms under the guise of wanting information when in fact it is to corrupt for our own individual purposes and futher economic growth and after the third, fourth or fifth bottle of wine and in some cases even stronger drinks to "oil" the pain of corruption being orchastrated they often get what they want.

    I have come to the awful view over the last two years that unlike when I was priviliged to serve in the 80's the movers and shakers of the business world in Cayman today have no desire or place for honest politicians but prefer corrupt ones so they can have confidence that when they need to have their favours or wishes done they will be successful even if the price is a little higher, and a company has to be created in BVI to facilitate the transactions.

    I offer my full support to any anti-corruption and anti-victimization that [the PPM] puts forward.

    Ezzard Miller

    • nauticalone says:

      Thanks Ezzard….for being one of the few today who is willing to stand up, to ask the tough questions and to advocate for professional ethics!

       

    • M says:

      Ezzard, I understand, but can we really trust PPM for another term?  I am all for anti-corruption; but to me, it seems hypocritical that the PPM is now crying for it.  Why, I say why don't you, Mr. Miller and a few bravehearts, come together and form a new party?  It would give the electorate more options, and we would have at least more discussions in the House before a bill is ever considered. Since you love the Cayman Islands, why don't you step out now whilst the atmosphere is ripe to make a difference?  Don't procrastinate!

      • Anonymous says:

        I’m not sure why you say that the PPM is “now” pushing for anti corruption measures and that this is hypocritical The PPM campaigned on an anti corruption platform from the first election it fought back in 2005 and has a good record in this area both in terms of introducing legislation to combat corruption and in terms of its own conduct of public affairs. It was the PPM that gave us Freedom of Information that has been the scourge of this governent. If it were not for the PPM’s efforts toasted openness and transparency we would be in far worse shape than we are now. To be sure the PPM has its problems but please be fair and give credit where credit is due.

        • Anonymous says:

          Ummm… ppm gave us freedom of information???  oh please… they had no choice but to ensure its legislation!  And don't you recall Chucky?  And what ever happened to the missing funds, monies unaccounted for after ppm left? ppm is not a well filtered party, my friend

          • Anonymous says:

            Why do you claim they had no choice? Considering they started, and spearheaded, the legislation when there had been no real push for it before, I would say they are very much responsible for instituting FOI. I think you're just incapable of giving credit where it is due, despite their other faults.

            • Johnson says:

              What???  PPM "responsible for instituting the FOI"???  You must be smoking the herb or partisan ignorance!  Article 19 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights was INSTITUTED by the UNITED NATIONS in 1948.  And in 2006 about 70 countries, including the UK adhered to the declaration. Like you say, Give credit to where credit is due!

              • Anonymous says:

                No one is suggesesting that the PPM invented FOI, so it is pretty silly to refer to the 1948 UN Declaration and what other countries have done. Clearly if it were up to the UDP to introduce it to Cayman, given the virulent opposition of the Premier to FOI, it would have remained simply as Article 19 of the UN Declaration, we would not have had a new Constitution which gives effect to these rights nor would we have had a Freedom of Information Law.  

          • Anonymous says:

            PPM chose to enact the freedom of information law, they didn't have to and it has made it so much easier for all of us to see what the UDP is up to. What missing funds? What monies unaccounted for? File an FOI request if you REALLY think this happened but I don't think that you do and are just running off your mouth. PPM may have overspent on starting badly needed, long overdue schools/hurricane shelters/community centres but at least we can see where the money went. It didn't go for first class travel, hotels and limos!

          • Anonymous says:

            I recall that Chuckie was subject to a Commission of Enquiry for trying to EXPOSE corruption. I don't care what his motive was.

      • Anonymous says:

        Is "New Political Party" the "scheme" that hardcore UDP supporters plan to use to enhance their chances of returning to power in 2013?

        It's rather difficult for anyone to support the actions of the UDP, but their closet supporters could openly support new political parties and "independents", knowing full well than an opposition splintered into as many groups as possible would give the UDP a better chance of winning.

        Anyone who says that they are not for either party are really saying that they are for the status quo, which really means UDP.

        I am not a member of the PPM and have no intentions of joining, but come election day I will cast my voter in favour of defeating the UDP, even if it means voting for a candidate that is not my first choice to represent me.

        And that my friend tells you how reprehensible I have found the actions of the UDP over the last two years.

      • :)) says:

        I am one who can't trust Alden. Last I read, he stated that it was a "regretted compromise" as to why he fail to include in the Constitution, one-man-one-vote. This clearly shows that they knew what was in the best interest for this country, but whilst they ruled for 4 years, had no brawn to stand for principle!  I am sorry, but I don't think I can trust him again. Besides, when their term was up, ppm left this country in serious debt – 81 million for that matter, and it caused alot of companies to pull-out. UDP just inherited the mess they made.

        • Anonymous says:

          Nice attempt at political spin.

          What it shows about Alden is that he was taking a bipartisan approach to the Constitution as he did not want it to be seen as a PPM documentbut instead supported by the community at large. That is is a statesmanlike attitude. However, he was naive in thinking that McKeeva could ever be trusted to act in good faith who although he insisted on certain points still did not support the Constitution, and even while not supporting it he is claiming that all the he has bestowed on himself he is entitled to under the Constitution. That is rank hypocrisy.

          UDP did not "just inherit" the mess. The UDP has created an even bigger mess.

          • killah z says:

            You say, "What it shows about Alden is that he was taking a bipartisan approach to the Constitution as he did not want it to be seen as a PPM document but instead supported by the community at large." Boss man, like alden said, it is still a "regretted compromise"!  He was not strong enough to withstand the opposition and stand for the people's interest!  Fool, stop melting this down into nothing!

    • Anonymous says:

      "Corruption" is first cousin to "political patronage" which is the real scourge of the Cayman Islands and is evident every time the Government changes. Mr Benson Ebanks famously stated after being victorious many years ago "to the victors go the spoils". Mr Miller, when he was the Member for Health before his government was thrown out lock, stock and barrel by the National Team in 1992, was all set to install his admittedly bright but totally inexperienced just out of university North Side protegy as CEO of his (Mr Miller's) Health Services Authority. Corruption?……no, I don't think so. Political/district patronage?……….absolutely. And all our politicians when they become successful do the same thing, so let us be very, very sceptical when we see people like Mr Miller claiming the moral high ground.

  17. Anonymous says:

    Love the viewpoint. And please don't let this detract from your argument, and do correct me if I am mistaken, but the CSPL is primarily for conduct of/by civil servants, no? Regardless, even if you took it out from your main point (as it's really just a segway into the corruption of our elected officials), we need more people of your opinion and willingness to speak out against the brazen acts by certain MLAs, and the culture which permits them to act in this manner. Corruption is not the grease which helps turn the wheels of bureaucracy a bit faster, but rather the gangrene slowly rotting the flesh of a healthy community. At what point does those members of our community who are complicit in allowing corrupt individuals to prosper find themselves worse enough off, materially and morally, via the stagnation and degredation of our society, to put an end to their acceptance of gifts, or cheering on some ole boy who made good?

    In two years, vote with your conscience, not with your new washing machine…

    • Anonymous says:

      I agree that this is an excellent Viewpoint. The CSPL website says that they are supposed to supervise the standards of politicians. Here is a quote:

      The primary responsibility of the Commission is to promote and monitor “the highest standards of integrity and competence in public life to ensure the prevention of corruption or conflicts ofinterest”. This includes the ethical conduct of members of the Legislative Assembly, the Cabinet,Public Authorities, and Public Officers as a whole.

      I hope they get on with it.

    • Anonymous9 says:

      "At what point does those members of our community who are complicit in allowing corrupt individuals to prosper find themselves worse enough off, materially and morally, via the stagnation and degredation of our society, to put an end to their acceptance of gifts, or cheering on some ole boy who made good"

       

      I love this statement. There are those who complain about the tokens of 'voting encouragement' yet if they had been offered a token, said they would gladly have accepted… !!!  As long as the hypocrites continue down this road, da wah ya get

       

      Thank you for this Viewpoint

       

  18. Anonymous says:

    Well said!  Most recently we've seen the MLA for the Brac say that she paved private commercial driveways because previous politicans had paved private driveways and therefore it was a policy decision of the Cayman gov't.  I'm sure the voting populace do not buy into this lame excuse and can clearly see how her actions fit within your well written article.