Monday, January 16, 2012


Two completely separate incidents took place at the end of last week which have brought me out of a self imposed hibernation since Christmas. I had taken a conscious decision not to get involved in any of the (for want of a better word) 'scandals' that might erupt in the new year and to stay out of any 'cat and dog' fights that might result. But these two incidents have so upset me that I feel that I must comment on them, if only for the sake of my own sanity.

The first incident that I am talking about is the storming of the headquarters of the Public Service Association (PSA) on Thursday by a breakaway faction that is opposed to the leadership of the current PSA President, Watson Duke. The matter is now before the High Court and I have absolutely no intention whatsoever of commenting on the rights of either of the parties to that dispute. What concerns (and concerned) me is the behaviour of both sides ... which, quite frankly, was absolutely deplorable.

The second incident took place at the Commission of Enquiry (COE) into the collapse of the CLICO empire on Friday. In that enquiry, a very senior 'Silk' of some 33 years standing, decided that he could gratuitously insult a witness by asking him if he was a bisexual. Mr. Martin Daly was clearly peeved at a response that he had got from Mr. Mervyn Assam and threw the comment/question at him, thus abusing his position as a cross-examining counsel and setting an extremely good example of bad taste and low ethical behaviour.

My point in joining these two incidents together is that they demonstrate clearly that our society has now sunk to new lows that are reminiscent of the wild west where anything went and where might was right. If you were rich and powerful you could (and often did) anything. If you were fast with a gun you could (and often did) anything. And there are plenty of cowboy movies and legends about the ineffective, ineffectual, incompetent and often corrupt sherriff and his deputies. The famous "gunfight at the OK Corral" is one such legend that eventually was made into (I believe) more than one movie. The high and mighty in this society do whatever they want. And the "gunslingers" do the same! Nobody cares or has any respect for anything that is good and decent anymore.

In Trinidad & Tobago standards of good taste have gone through the floor when a so called pillar/exemplar of our society can make the kind of statement in a publicly televised hearing and not be thoroughly pilloried for it. Standards of decency and proper behaviour are now in the cesspit when the leaders of no less an organisation that represents all of the public servants in this country can behave in the disgraceful manner that the country saw on Thursday evening.

I am sorry. If the new rules are that might is right and that we can all say and do anything we want then please tell me so. Perhaps the best way to govern this country is that we disband the police force and allow all citizens to simply strap on a gun in order to defend themselves, blow up all the schools which are clearly not teaching our children anything about proper values and look to see where else we can do away with the trappings of a civilised and progressive State. All the money we are spending on these institutions is clearly going to waste, and you know what they say: if you can't beat 'em ... join 'em! Welcome to the wild, wild west ... Trini style!!!

1 comment:

  1. Senator,

    This has to be one of your better pieces!. I couldn't agree with you more on comments about the senior 'Silk'..Frankly I thought it was self demeaning and utterly disgraceful and yes, he should have been pilloried on a national scale for it.

    My respect for him has taken a dive and you know when a trust is broken the time to retrieve is usually very long...if it ever is enough. As for the PSA...well what can I say...hooligans all.!!