Posted by: J Starling | November 10, 2009

Welcoming the Bermudian Democratic Alliance

I believe I can speak on behalf of Bermuda JEWEL when I welcome the Bermudian Democratic Alliance to the Bermudian political scene.

Setting up a third party is always a challenging enterprise and carries with it the threat of failure and disappointment. There are always a number of obstacles that such an project must overcome in order to be viable and have a lasting impact on our collective political development. It is not yet clear if this new group will be able to successfully overcome these obstacles. Read More…

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Posted by: J Starling | November 4, 2009

Writing Our Own Narrative

This is a new post contributed by Pied Piper for discussion here.

Here is an interesting viewpoint

We live in a world of stories. Stories are invented to help us understand everything that is around us. The unpredictability of life has from the dawn of time encouraged human beings to be very creative in their narratives from the wall paintings of prehistoric times the hieroglyphics of Egyptians to the History Channel documentaries of today.

Although we dismiss as ignorance that primitive people actually believed the myths they created about everything, from the weather to the afterlife, it is more probable that early religions were understood on a much more metaphoric basis. The ancients didn’t believe that the wind or rains were gods. They invented characters whose personalities reflected the properties of the elements. The characters and their stories served more as ways of remembering that it would be cold for four months before spring returns than as genuinely accepted explanations for nature’s changes. Read More…

Posted by: J Starling | November 1, 2009

Community Initiative to Reduce Violence

I was just reading over the Scotland on Sunday paper, seeing as I’m in Scotland and all. There was a rather interesting article in it concerning street gangs in Glasgow and an initiative being pursued there in response to the gang violence, entitled ‘Hitting Violent Street Gangs Where It Hurts‘.

While the situation in Glasgow is naturally different than Bermuda, with some gangs having a history tied to the sectarianism that has plagued the city for more than a century, there are alot of similarities. Perhaps it was reading the article in light of the latest shooting over Halloween, but reading the article really made me think of Bermuda.

I recommend readers look over the article, and also this site which details the organisation featured in the article, CIRV – Community Initiative to Reduce Violence. I know there have been some moves in the past to deal with the gangs, the most recent being the intervention by Mr. Farrakahn. I quite like the CIRV approach, and it seems to work to a degree. I was wondering if it would be possible to adapt it for Bermuda, or how we can make the existing approaches more effective? Any ideas?

Posted by: J Starling | October 30, 2009

Party Politics – The Modern Evil

This is a piece written by Pied Piper for publication here.

Following on from Vexed Bermoothes highlighted passage from George Washington there is a further point to consider;

They [political parties] serve to organize faction, to give it an artificial and extraordinary force; to put, in the place of the delegated will of the nation, the will of a party, often a small but artful and enterprising minority of the community; and, according to the alternate triumphs of different parties, to make the public administration the mirror of the ill-concerted and incongruous projects of faction, rather than the organ of consistent and wholesome plans digested by common counsels, and modified by mutual interests.

—GEORGE WASHINGTON, Farewell Address, Sep. 17, 1796

I bring this statement by George Washington to the attention and consideration of all Bermuda citizens. One can see how George Washington’s words apply not just to the United States, but we can see their relevance in many countries throughout the world where one or two political contributors can come to control and influence an entire political party. In an extreme case political parties can destroy a Country by their focus on gaining and maintaining political power and not on truthfulness or service to the people. Read More…

Posted by: Ms Morris | October 16, 2009

School Leaving Age

A question for feedback: Do you think the school leaving age should be raised to 18?

I’m just thinking, wouldn’t it make sense? Under the old system you graduated at the age of 16-17 and so of course the minimum age a person could leave would be 16. But we’ve adopted a new system and I just think it would make sense and possibly curb some of our social ills (if only by a fraction). I just don’t think it’s wise to give student the option to opt out of education once they hit 16. Students who stay in school have a larger support system through teachers and programs and a better chance of obtaining a high school certificate than if they attended a G.E.D. program that generally has less support and takes less time out of their day. If a person takes their G.E.D. exam and for whatever reason does not pass what is their motivation to try again? I hypothesize that many do not and opt to work instead. Read More…

Posted by: Ms Morris | October 6, 2009

Mind the gap…

On the Underground (London subway service) when a train stops at a station there is a safety announcement of “mind the gap”. The gap being the space between the train and the platform, a dangerous space is you fall between. Reading yesterdays RG however my attention is drawn to gaps in service between the Ministry of Health and the Department of Corrections.
Read More…

Posted by: alsys | September 15, 2009

NewBP?

Obviously the news that six UBP members (as well as several Branch people) have resigned from the UBP in preparation for the launch of a “new” party has been well discussed online and in RL. The six most visual are Donte Hunt, Sean Pitcher, Mark Pettingill, Wayne Scott, Michael Fahy and Shawn Crockwell – three sitting MPs, the party chairman, a Senator and… well, Wayne Scott, who ran in the last election. They held a press conference yesterday stating that they have chosen to shore up a new Party that will move away from the racial polarization that currently is awash in Bermuda politics.

  Read More…

Posted by: Ms Morris | September 8, 2009

Waiting in the wings…

I was talking to a friend this morning on the present political landscape and where the people of Bermuda are. Now that the Uighurs situation has settled a bit and there are no flashy headlines in the papers of plots to oust the present premier, is it over? Have the people decided to forget about it all and go back to the grind of their daily lives and forgotten the way the premier broke the law, disrespected the government and disrespected the people of Bermuda? It has been said that Bermudians have short memories when it comes to politics, is it really so?

I, for one have not forgotten and while the house may be on break my mind is not (ok, not entirely true. I took the last few weeks off). I just wonder do the people still feel as passionately as they did when the scandal first broke out or have they grown complacent, accepted that we are stuck with the premier we have for another year. As I explained to my esteemed friend I have hope that the people will prevail during the annual PLP Delegates Conference. Until proven wrong I choose not think otherwise.

Posted by: J Starling | September 7, 2009

Open Mike – Micro-states

Below is a piece submitted by ‘Pied Piper’ for discussion.

Dear Bermuda Jewel – Here is an interesting article about Greenland looking forward to independence. There are a lot of similarities with Bermuda. Interestingly this article has been used in discussion about the Turks & Caicos Islands. Bermuda is the Classic Farrugia state.

Are there enough people in Greenland(Bermuda) for a whole country?

Greenlanders have been pressing for more autonomy from Denmark, and looking forward to independence. Anne Sibert asks, “Undersized: Could Greenland be the new Iceland? Should it be? ”

Greenland has 60,000 people, is that enough for a nation-state? Read More…

Posted by: J Starling | September 6, 2009

Happy Labour Day!

Tomorrow, Monday, September the seventh, is a public holiday in honour of organised labour and the working class. I hope that everyone is able to attend the parade and attend the speeches at Bernards Park afterwards. I understand that there are some changes to the usual format and that the event will change its location in the future to commemorate important labour events throughout the island.

Whether you take the time to go out and celebrate the gains of the labour movement or simply enjoy a well-deserved break from work, Happy Labour Day!

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