Saturday, April 20, 2024

THE ‘NETTE EFFECT: New year, same old monster issues


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As last year was swallowed up by 2013, in my little world there was hardly any time to reflect, or waste, on those idealistic New Year’s resolutions.
I’ve made half-hearted attempts at the exercise thing, the learning a new trade and keeping my mouth shut when something annoys me. I plan to change that but it has nothing to do with resolutions.
But there were a few things which came roaring into the new year which we dearly wished could just fade into the annals of time.
There are some things to which we’ve gotten so accustomed that they follow us year to year and after the initial outcry we settle back into the norm and they become but humbugs in our daily lives. No matter how we try to wish them away, they just won’t go; they just become bigger and more menacing until time, and not an ineffectual man, takes care of them.
The question is: can we wait for the passage of time to deliver every solution?
Easy predictions for this year are the re-emergence of the CLICO battle by investors and policyholders, Al Barrack’s fight to recover his millions, Cuban Raul Garcia’s effort to remain here legally and what is shaping up to be the real mother of all battles – the Alexandra/Jeff Broomes/BSTU royal rumble.
For the life of me, and probably several others, I cannot understand how a situation was allowed to get so out of hand. I am further baffled how a ministry with a command chain that includes education officers, deputy chief education officers, a chief education officer, a permanent secretary, a Minister of Education and ultimately the Prime Minister couldn’t find a solution.
The result is a three-headed monster of Greek mythological proportions thrashing about as its masters try to hang on to the chains and force it into submission.
It may not be on the same scale as the Hydra, the nine-headed monster, but it does seem that every time the powers that be attempt some form of decapitation an angrier head re-appears.
This sleeping giant of a monster is definitely awake.
All the sound bites emanating from the top only make for good quotes, the types that are found in any epic war or historical films. Two of my favourites are Troy, an adaptation of Homer’s Iliad and Gladiator. They speak to honourable actions in the face of opposing leadership.
But the exception here is that when we want delicious quotes we look to the movies or the classics. However, in reality when we want action we look to our leaders.
Quotes are nothing if not followed up by firm and decisive action that takes us down a particular path. If we want to avoid war then we must take the path to avoid it and not simply spout about it.
You can scream court action all you want, but that is no guarantee of a swift resolution. Remember, we are still dragging the Al Barrack issue these many years as the ghosts of governments past and present haven’t seen it fit to carry out the court order.
Therefore if governments do not obey, how can the “ordinary citizens” be expected to carry out instructions?
The solution would be for someone or some “body” to take the mature step and back down before the innocent are destroyed.
We will see but it is a shame all around.
• Antoinette Connell is the DAILY NATION Editor.


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