01 August, 2007

Territories Talk

Territories Talk. On Tuesday 31 July, I was invited to join in a radio programme at Webster’s Park. It has been broadcast periodically for several months. It is a joint programme between radio stations in Cayman Islands and Anguilla. I was attending it for the first time. The subject was the Constitutional review process. I was only able to stay for an hour before I had to leave for another appointment. So, I missed most of the drama. I was able to catch the closing moments on my car radio. One of my readers has sent the following review. It will only be amusing for those of you who heard the programme. I apologise to the others for posting such ephemera.

Rev. Mitchell,

I listened to "Territories Talk", confirming my suspicion that almost no one in Anguilla or Cayman cares what's happening in the other territory, and the need for or utility of such a programme has yet to be revealed.

It also proved that we lack the engineering capacity to manage the complexities of having two separate engineers coordinate two separate moderators with two rooms full of politicians and lawyers on two separate islands on at least four radio stations.

Having our end at the Webster Park added the background noise of children screaming, trucks roaring by, goat and other unidentified barnyard noises, and proved only that, as viewed by the sophisticated people of Cayman, Anguilla remains a backward place with more goats than people.

The outside broadcasting unit seems to have only one microphone that is usually not in front of whatever mouth is open. It has a loose connection that makes loud and annoying static noises whenever someone moves it, which is almost constantly.

Bernice said, “Full internal self-government is ours already, all we need to do is to accept it”. I conclude from this that it is somewhat akin to a state of grace.

Hubert said, “We must fight the British for it.”

Eddy said, “We must beg the British for it. But it would be good if they kept it back because we need to have good governance first”, which will happen about the same time as pigs fly.

The ever helpful Josephine said, “It's a concept steeped in subjectivity”. Flogging should be reinstated for arrogant lawyers.

Joyce, always in denial, said, “We must not describe ourselves as part of a colonial system”. Pride over reality applies to much that we all love about Anguilla, including the drug territory war between The Valley and Blowing Point.

Lolita said, ‘The constitutional review was stage-managed by the same people who are responsible for good governance." I think we are to believe you are the Samuel Connor of the British.

Ras B proceeded to call Rev Niles, "Rev. Mitchell."

Eddie said of the contribution by Cayman Minister, Alden McLaughlin, "I agree with...that guy..."

The Cayman people gave up and left without saying goodbye.

And we wonder why our youth are killing each other?

I thought Victor was quite on the ball when, at the very end, he described the lawyers as having continuously confused “complete internal self-government” with “the right to self-determination”. I had wondered whether I was the only one to notice.

Were we all really as bad as my correspondent writes?


  1. I was encouraged by the debate. I saw a degree of agreement if only we can put bickering and playing to the gallery behind us. It is easy to make jokes, Don I thought the comment that you posted was unhelpful. Why cant we get the idea into our heads that being constructive would be more helpful than making cheap slanted comments.

  2. Could you explain, concisely, the difference between, "complete internal self-government" and "the right to self determination?" Or could you point me to the place where you already have done so?

    I apologise for being so dense and thank you for your patience.

  3. Additional confusion has been caused by those who say "self-determination" when they really mean "independence."

    Foreigners who come here to make money are evil opportunists, but overseas Anguillians who return to do the identical thing are said to be "contributing to Anguilla's development."

    Some of the lawyers who are clearly using the Planning Bill or the hapless Indians to promote either their political ambitions or simply as a means to advertise their services are said to be serving the cause of truth and justice.

    In St. Maarten, the present colony of the Netherlands Antilles is moving toward becoming two separate colonies. They are so glad to be getting rid of Curacao that they are calling the new colony a "country."

    Working three jobs so that we can be consumers of goods, Hubert tells us that we are starving and becoming enslaved.

    Lost in the noise and confusion, we pretend we are setting a fine example for our children, and are amazed that they find no meaning in our mindless consumerism or our peacock behaviour in our churches.

    Feeling is believing.

    A Carnival Rap

    Gunsmoke in The Valley,
    one guy shot in he head,
    he skull bust like one cantalope
    he by the hospital in Guadeloupe.

    Next three boys get shoot
    by Blue's Gas Station.
    You don't have to worry about quality or service,
    when you in the freezer by Hugo Rey.

    Point boys vex,
    revenge is promise.
    Revolution soon come,
    cries Percy Thomas.

    Feeling is believing
    Are we having fun yet?

  5. It is official! Osbourne will focus on his health, hang up his towel and will not run in the next election. He approached many young professional ladies to run in District 2 but they declined at this time. Hence, he will put the ANA support around V.Bryan. This means Victor will be the next Chief Minister if the UF wins.

    Apparently, when V. Bryan weighed his options he felt the APP cannot win so he is going with the party that is a winner. it is rumoured his Uncle wanted him to run for APP. From good sources he was on an AXA familirization tour last week. Also I guess he is a born ANA right. I wish him well. But I know Jerome R. will be a formidable candidate to beat. Hopefully, Jerome R. can get his family values in order. But only the people of East End can choose their next candidate.
    I wonder if VB will run AXA the way he runs his Chat Forum. I suggest better leadership fast.

    With Vernal B. in the inner circle independence looks like a surety.

  6. I resent Vernal Bryan using this blog for his self-promoting "official" announcements. On 21 July he used his own website to call Bunton a liar. On 3 July he stated that the elected politicians are "selling out, taking kick backs into the millions and protecting companies like Viceroy their pipers." He is now attempting to create the myth that the CM will endorse him as his successor.

  7. So, when Vernal runs, will he run his sock-puppets in enough districts to be a one-man majority?

  8. I heard a part of the radio programme on my car radio. I was saddened. All the participants seemed to be talking excitedly at the same time. I could not understand what one of them was saying. They lacked the minimum courtesy expected of invitees to a radio discussion. This demands of all that they speak one at a time, as invited by the moderator. They are not engaged in a face-to-face debate where each listener has the benefit of visual signals to distinguish the speakers and clarify the language. Radio speakers are invisible to the listeners who have to rely on clarity of sound to understand what is being said.

    The moderator's attempts to get them to behave themselves was brushed aside. They were a bunch of amateurs when it comes to the radio.

    If the whole programme was like that, no wonder the Camanians left without saying goodbye. I turned off after a few moments of trying to listen.

  9. Did I hear Rev Mitchel, or was it Rev Niles correctly, did he realy say that in considering Anguillians for public office we should learn to separate integrity from ability? If I am correct, which attribute would he suggest he has bearing in mind that he sets himself up as a public figure?

  10. Self Determination based on my limited study of law and understanding of various systems of Government is determined by the people. It is my belief that Mr. Baird has lost the point based on the UN charter. I do believe that the people should vote to dtermine which system of Government they should have. I understand Mr. Baird about the lack of accountability and transparency, however its my belief that if we had term limits this will vanish.
    Sir, this is the first time I am posting anything on this site but would like to congratulate you for being very open and transparent.


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