Archive for April 1st, 2013

Unanswered questions to get us started

Unanswered questions to get us started

| 01/04/2013 | 42 Comments

We now have 58 candidates vying for one of the 18 available seats in the Legislative Assembly. For some the seat means a salary, for others it means social prestige and status and we all hope that for a few it actually means improving the welfare of citizens of this country. It's worth asking yourself: which reason best suits your current favourite candidate/ group?

For certain, we can tell from what we are hearing from some candidates that they don't actually appreciate that they are vying to be a 'Legislator' and that this means carefully considering policy problems, finding solutions with the help of technocrats and the wider public and using the art of politics to obtain support from fellow members of the LA so that real changes can be implemented.

For years we have heard of how 'honourable' it is for someone to sacrifice their otherwise comfortable lives so they can make a difference to ours. But what if all they are seeking is a bit of prestige in an area they have not 'conquered' before? What if they don't have what it takes to make a decent salary and the 10 to 12 thousand monthly benefit from being an MLA would simply be a great help to them right now?

The only way to truly understand where candidates stand is to talk to them or listen to their public statements very very carefully. A candidate who says "we need to invest in education" without telling you why and how is wasting your time with campaign rhetoric. If all a candidate can say about governance is that leaders need to be transparent and accountable, they might as well be telling you that Christmas comes in December or that it rains almost every Pirates Week.

But asking for details on just a few typical policy issues would be letting them off too easily. So we could ask them a few of the following as a quick start:

To PPM: how will you pay for the alternative to relocating the dump to Bodden Town and what are your SPECIFIC plans to get the economy moving? And why should we believe you will be better fiscal managers this time around?

To UDP: why were you not able to get one major project off the ground in 4 years and why could you not get through a single year without at least one major allegation of corruption?

To C4C endorsees: if you are 'anti group/party' as a matter of principle/policy, why now 'group' during the campaign in an effort to win? And if say 2 or 3 of you are successful, whatbinds you together as a team to promote the interest of Caymanians? (Saying you are fresh, honest or don't really need the salary are not sufficient responses). If you inadvertently came out as anti party/group due to C4C pressure (or just poor launch strategy), then please correct that position publicly now so we can all move on and then please answer the final question below.

To Frank/Lyndon/McKeeva/Kenny/Rolston: whether by association, perception or for real you are easily placed in the category of anti/deviant social behaviour. Why do you feel you are fit and proper to represent the people? And (to Dr Frank) how can a man of your stature be associated with a still yet unexplained (but widely reported and debated) gun shot incident?

To PNA members: you have a credibility issue to address publicly. You were part of a government that essentially failed, you now blame everything on 'Daddy' for forcing you to go along with everything. How can we be convinced that each of you individually will have the conviction and courage to lead as you are/were supposed to? Will you fail to act or 'man up' again or will you represent the people this time around?

To all non C4C independents: if you are truly independent tell us where you stand on: the ForCayman Alliance generally, the West Bay Road closure, the Legal Practitioners Bill, the rollover policy and fixing the government's fiscal imbalance. Then direct us to a source for the top 10 policies you will address/ introduce in your first 3 months (we assume you already have these written down somewhere since you don't have the burden of being slowed down by group/ party machinery).

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