UNDILUTED pays tribute to John Maxwell by featuring two previous columns by him from the Hot Calaloo UNDILUTED archives:
Not just a book but an invitation to join the Goodwill
Revolution against an unfair, unjust and deceptive system that
keeps the world poor and without hope. Find out how you can join,
quit the rat race, and achieve a happier more meaningful life for
yourself and others through goodwill to all .
by Donna Hemans ... $16.10
---------------For the Life of Laetitia by Trinidad -born Merle Hodge Price: $10.54
a wonderful book about a young girl in the Carribean, the first of her family to go to secondary school.
First bananas, now US threaten our rum industry
US policy has already destroyed the banana industry in CARICOM. Now they are going after its rum by granting subsidies to UK-based Diageo for rum production in the Virgin Isles and Puerto Rican. Already, Barbados is threatening to go to the WTO about these unfair subsidies.
CARICOM has declared that it is determined to seek a satisfactory solution to the matter of trade-distorting subsidies being granted to USVI (United States Virgin Islands) and Puerto Rico rum producers that threaten the long-term viability of the rum industry in the Caribbean".
Since last December, CARICOM said the region continued to have "serious concerns" regarding the competitiveness of Caribbean rum in the United States. "In addition to being the largest agriculture-based export industry in CARICOM, the rum industry is a substantial employer and a major contributor to foreign exchange earnings and government revenues.
Last August, the subsidy recipient UK-based Diageo, one of the largest liquor companies in the world, reportedly warned that should CARICOM mount a complaint to the World Trade Organisation (WTO) over the alleged subsidies it threatened that it would "re-evaluate" its Caribbean interests.
Both Grenada and Ja in trade war with T&T
Trinidad blocks honey imports from Grenada
The issue was discussed at the Council for Trade and Economic Development meeting in Guyana last week, where Grenada made a submission under the heading 'Confiscation of honey exported to Trinidad and Tobago'.
According to Dr Patrick Antoine, the chief economic adviser to the Keith Mitchell government, Port-of-Spain gave a commitment to take steps towards resolving the issue.
He said that following the submission, Trinidad and Tobago gave an undertaking to examine the matter within a 30-day period.
"However, if nothing is done so that we can export to that market, we will be taking our concerns to a higher body," Antoine said.
Trade officials said Trinidad and Tobago is using a 1964 law to protect honey produced in the twin-island republic and has not provided any evidence to substantiate its claim that the move to restrict the importation of honey from Grenada is to stem the entry of disease that may be harmful to the bee industry in that country.
According to Jamaica’s Trade Industry Minister Anthony Hylton, the Trinidad and Tobago government has been silent on the matter of rules of origin surrounding the exportation of lubrication oils by the state-owned oil company, Petroleum Company of Trinidad and Tobago Limited (Petrotrin).
Hylton said that further to a complaint from a Jamaican private-sector firm alleging that the rule of origin in the Treaty of Chaguaramas was being circumvented by Petrotrin, Jamaica Customs sought information from the Trinidad and Tobago authorities and has been virtually ignored. The applicable rules require the Trinidad and Tobago government to respond to a verification request within six weeks. It is now over six months, and there has been no verification response by the government of Trinidad and Tobago.
Jamaica names first-ever representative to the African Union
Jamaican Prime Minister Portia Simpson Miller has appointed Carlton Masters as Jamaica’s first-ever representative to the African Union. Masters’ appointment also includes the post of Special Envoy of the Prime Minister, and assumes the rank of Ambassador.
His role would be to "seek to strengthen Jamaica’s relations and partnerships with a range of African countries and organisations and deepen our dialogue on issues of strategic importance. He will also work to promote dialogue and explore avenues for trade, investment and cooperation with African partners.
Jamaica’s move follows Haiti’s accession to the African Union as an observer country.
Suriname looks to solar energy for remote areas
The Suriname govern-ment has announced that it will be investing in solar energy to bring electricity to remote communities across the country.
Gunzi, a Maroon village in the upper Suriname River region, will serve as test subject for the project. Alternative energy company WTEC from the United States was contracted to execute the project, in close cooperation with the Ministry of Natural Resources, national electricity company EBS and the Anton de Kom University of Suriname. University students will monitor the Gunzi project for a year and their findings will be used to optimise its use and execute the project in other villages.
More than 75 per cent of Suriname's landmass are blanketed by thick rainforest. Most of the country's inhabitants live in the capital Paramaribo as a result. Several villages in the sparsely populated hinterland have not been hooked up to the EBS grid and make do with noisy diesel-powered generators that are only switched on at night.
Trinidad fires Caribbean Airlines board
Trinidad's Finance Minister Larry Howai Friday named a new board of directors for the cash-strapped state-owned national carrier, Caribbean Airlines (CAL), less than 72 hours after he told legislators that the company had accumulated losses in excess of US$100 million.
Howai told a news conference that the new interim board will be chaired by former independent legislator Phillip Marshall and includes the Jamaican Dennis Lalor.
The airline had accumulated losses of US$110 million. The preliminary unaudited figures showed US$32 million of the $70 million loss was incurred by the Air Jamaica route, with the London route also accounting for a major part of the losses. It responded by cutting flights to Jamaica.
Caribbean Airlines, which began operations in 2007, acquired Air Jamaica in 2011. The Jamaican Government has a 16 per cent stake in the Trinidadian air carrier.
Jamaican schools in crisis
In Jamaica, weak leadership and poor management are negatively affecting the performance of students in more than 40 per cent (86) of the 205 schools examined by the National Education Inspectorate (NEI) during the period September 2011-March 2012.
In a damning indictment of teachers and principals, the NEI found
In the summary, the NEI notes that the majority of schools inspected were only at the satisfactory mark, with the entire system functioning between satisfactory and unsatisfactory.
2) Develop a national teacher-competency index that will inform the ministry and the Government of existing teacher competencies.
3) Rationalise small underperforming schools for efficiency and effectiveness.
4) All teachers should be teachers of reading and, therefore, it should be a mandatory subject in teacher-training college programs.
Connecticut suspends hundreds of kindergarten students
More and more each day it seems education policy in the USA is
Meanwhile in Chicago, plans are underway to close 50 schools in mainly black and Latino neighborhoods because of budget problems.
International commission to probe Walter Rodney's death in Guyana
Guyana’s President Donald Ramotar has approved the establishment of
an international commission of inquiry that will look into the
circumstances surrounding the murder in 1980 of acclaimed historian and
Working People’s Alliance Leader, Dr Walter Rodney.
Women dominate the number of teachers in training in Ja
Male teachers are few and far between in Jamaica’s classrooms, and current indications are that this situation is set to worsen in years to come. The numerical dominance by women in teacher-training educational institutions continued in 2012, with most reporting only a smithering of men seeking to learn how to teach.
The 2012 Economic and Social Survey Jamaica (ESSJ) shows that with the exception of the G.C. Foster College of Physical Education, females outnumber men in teacher training, with the gap being as much as 16 to one in some institutions.
The dominance of women continues at all level of the education sector, with females heading the six regional offices of the Ministry of Education; two female deputy chief education officers; a female chief education officer and a female permanent secretary in the education ministry.
Breakthrough discovery from Jamaican doctor
Medical researchers at the University of the West Indies have made a breakthrough discovery in treating patients who have suffered a stroke.
Lead researcher Dr Carron Gordon and her team have discovered that simple outdoor walking three times per week for 30 minutes can significantly improve a stroke victim's health-related quality of life, functional status, endurance, strength and fitness. In fact, one patient who participated in the study had a 200 per cent improvement.
Published last month in Stroke, a journal of the American Heart Association, the findings have generated widespread interest across the United States and have caused specialists to now rethink their approach in the treatment of stroke patients.
"Exercise intervention had been used before, using a number of means, but no one had looked at walking as a single intervention, simple outdoor walking, which is a common, accessible modality," noted Gordon, a physiotherapist for more than 30 years with a PhD in public health.
"In our context, a lot of persons would not have access to the equipment used as part of the other studies, but walking is so accessible and can be done at the community level. It's familiar, inexpensive and something people could very easily get into."
Brain drain and the Caribbean
Brain drain is the process by which one country (home country) loses intelligent and technically skilled labour through migration to another country (host country), where the economic, geographic or professional environment is more favourable.
Brain drain basically occurs when people acquire university or college education or specialised skills and relocate to apply these knowledge and skills in a country they weren't born.
It is most prevalent in small island developing states. A recent study by the World Bank found evidence to suggest that Guyana has the highest incident of brain drain in the world with roughly 89 per cent of their tertiary level graduates leave to find jobs elsewhere.
Jamaica is second with roughly 85 per cent of Jamaica's tertiary-level graduates migrating. More than 80 per cent of tertiary-level graduates migrate from Haiti and Suriname leave as well.
There is also another aspect of brain drain called brain waste, where migrants from one area to the next end up working in an environment where they never get the opportunity to apply their education, qualifications or skill set.
Twelve schools in Clarendon in Jamaica to get free Internet
Approximately a dozen schools in Clarendon have been earmarked for free Internet and cable services under Columbus Communications Jamaica Limited's Building Leaders Through Technology Program. The schools consist of - seven primary, three high, and two primary and a junior high.
The communities in Clarendon are producing significant results in academics through several schools. These institutions have merged the education function with information technology and are effectively demonstrating the value and relevance of technology.
Columbus has moved to deepen relationships in several key parishes this year, Clarendon included, by undertaking community upliftment activities, sports programs and various seminars in schools. Recently, the company collaborated with members of the Flow National Basketball League (FNBL) to participate in a Read Across Jamaica Day activity at Mineral Heights Primary in May Pen.
In the coming months, Columbus also has major plans to extend its broadband footprint in Spanish Town, St Catherine. Schools within serviceable areas will also be receiving complimentary services under the Building Leaders Through Technology Program.
Columbus Communications Jamaica Ltd. is wholly-owned by Columbus. It’s Jamaica’s only true broadband triple play (cable‚ internet and telephony) provider, operating under the brand name Flow.
T&T World Cup squad receives millions owed
A long-standing dispute over millions of dollars owed to 13 members of Trinidad and Tobago's 2006 World Cup squad has ended, the country’s Football Federation (TTFF) has reported. The players were owed nearly TT$12 million after the United Kingdom-based Sports Dispute Resolution Panel (SDRP) - and later the Trinidad and Tobago High Court - ruled in their favour in a legal impasse with the Trinidad and Tobago Football Federation (TTFF).
The TTFF confirmed payment to the players in a released issued Wednesday, saying the court order has been fully executed. The SDRP had awarded the players 50 per cent of proceeds associated with the 2006 World Cup campaign.
However, the matter had to be contested in the high court after the TTFF failed to settle on the grounds that the players had breached the panel's gag order.
Jamaica flops in World Cup soccer
Jamaica, already in last place, lost three straight games to all but eliminate any chance of advancing to the World Cup finals in Brazil next year. At home in Jamaica, they lost 0-1 to Mexico and by 1-2 to the US. They then proceeded to Honduras to lose 0-2. Jamaica then over-reacted by firing their coach Theodore Whitmore or as they say, "asked him to resign". This firing was completely undeserved as Jamaica was competitive and played without 3 of their 4 defensive starters.
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