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.
Sandy left a path of destruction in the Caribbean too
Before ‘frankenstorm’ Sandy ploughed into northeast US, it left behind a path of death and destruction in Haiti, Dominican Republic, Puerto Rico, Jamaica, Cuba and the Bahamas. At last count a total of 69 deaths with 54 in Haiti and 11 in Cuba. The hurricane’s howling winds and rain toppled thousands of houses and ripped off roofs, knocked out power, flooded roads and destroyed crops.
Cruise ships earn billions but peanuts for Caribbean
A new study commissioned by the Florida-Caribbean Cruise Association (FCCA) has found that direct cruise spending totalled nearly US$2 billion in 21 Caribbean and Latin American destinations in 2011/12. The Exton, Pennsylvania-based Business Research and Economic Advisors (BREA) conducted the study
The study reveals that:
The World Bank said in a 2011 report on Jamaica that as much as 80 per cent of tourism earnings do not stay in the Caribbean region, one of the highest "leakage" rates in the world.
"In all-inclusive Caribbean hotels, it is common for only 20 per cent of revenue to be returned to the local economy. In the case of cruise ships, it will be much less, probably no more than five per cent," John Issa, former head of Jamaica's hotel association, said the cruise lines enjoy an unfair advantage over land-based businesses because regional governments fear the ships may pull out for a competing destination, while "once you put down a hotel, you are captive."
In one famous case, Carnival Cruise Lines withdrew from Grenada in 1999 amid a dispute over a US$1.50-a-head tax to pay for a new landfill.
Unshackle them! Worker exploitation in Jamaica
It is widespread in America. Now that exploitation of workers has spread to Jamaica, a poison that strips workers of their rights and benefits such as vacation leave, maternity leave, redundancy payments and promotional opportunities.
Describing as exploitative, the practice of employers to offer fixed-term contracts to workers, Government Senator Lambert Brown has urged fellow legislators to join him in calling on the Government to make the necessary legislative amendments to put an end to the practice.
"The proliferation of fixed, short-term contracts is undermining the industrial-relations code and short-changing the workers of Jamaica. It is taking us back literally to the master and servant days," Brown said.
According to the Government senator, security guards and workers in the hotel sector were at the mercy of employers as they work for years - and for long hours - and were only considered contractors instead of permanent employees. He said the provision of security of employment in the labour-relations code was being breached.
"It is affecting not only the man at the bottom, not only the janitor, not only the factory worker, but it is also affecting white-collar employees," Brown said.
He has called for the Government to move urgently and take the necessary steps to standardise the definition of a worker. Brown also said the Government should urgently review the practice of employing persons under the guise of them being independent workers.
Narco-trafficking a growing threat in the Caribbean
In one of a number of recent reports on the issue, the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime has warned that there is a growing risk that the Caribbean could once again become the primary conduit for narcotics trafficking into the United States.
The document, which mainly concentrates on Central America, also suggests that although Jamaica has declined as a location for cocaine shipments to Europe, the Dominican Republic, Haiti, the Dutch and French Caribbean plus Suriname, Guyana and French Guiana have become important conduits using, in some cases, routes through West Africa.
It observes too that as the interdiction success rate increases in Central America and Mexico, producers and traffickers have become extremely adept at rapidly re-routing shipments and at moving to other locations; a development often accompanied by significant levels of violence as contesting groups vie for control.
New strategy to deal with Antigua, US gaming dispute
In 2005, the WTO ruled that the US had violated international trade agreements by prohibiting operation of offshore Internet gambling sites. Antigua claimed that it lost US$3.4 billion a year due to the US action, but the WTO awarded Antigua US$21 million. WTO rulings have ruined the banana industry in the Caribbean but the US seems immune to their rulings.
Recently the Antigua & Barbuda government said it had reached an agreement with stakeholders in the gaming industry in a new effort to resolve a decade-long impasse with the United States (US) over remote gaming services.
Government said that this newly formed partnership, involving the Antigua and Barbuda Investment Authority (ABIA), will fight for the billions of dollars lost in potential gaming revenue from the online gaming trade dispute caused by the US' failure to abide by numerous rulings of the World Trade Organization (WTO).
Christie becomes new Bahamas PM
Caribbean Community (CARICOM) leaders have been extending their congratulations to new Bahamas Prime Minister Perry Christie, following his resounding victory in the recent general election. Unofficial preliminary results show that Christie's Progressive Liberal Party won 29 out of the 38 seats contested in the general election, reversing the defeat it suffered in 2009 at the hands of the Free National Movement (FNM).
FNM leader Hubert Ingraham has since announced his resignation from politics and parliament.
Pioneering Trinidad-Born US Congressman Mervyn Dymally dies
Trinidad-born former Congressman, Mervyn M. Dymally,was laid to rest on October 17th in Culver City, Los Angeles. The congressman and former California lieutenant governor passed away on October 9th. Dymally, who blazed trails for generations of African American officeholders, was 86.
A self-described civil rights champion, Dymally was first elected as a
California assemblyman in 1962, just when Trinidad became independent. He
rose to become the state’s first black state senator in 1966 and its
first and only black lieutenant governor in 1974. In 1980, he won a
congressional seat representing Compton and its surrounding area, one of
the most solidly Democratic bastions in Los Angeles County.
He was a stalwart for disenfranchised people and struggling communities at home and abroad. He championed economic and humanitarian aid for Africa as chairman of the House Foreign Affairs Committee. He retired from Congress in 1992 but re-entered state politics at 76, winning the same Assembly seat he held at the start of his political career.
Jamaica squeaks through in World Cup playoff
Jamaica was on the brink of elimination, but only a lousy 10,000 spectators turned up at the National stadium that eventful night. Jamaica's 4-1 win against Antigua and Barbuda ensured Guatemala missed out on the final stage on away goals. On the scoresheet for the Reggae Boys were Dane Richards (2), Demar Phillips and Nyron Nosworthy, while Quinton Griffith scored for Antigua & Barbuda, who ended the stage winless.
The United States ensured they finished top of Group A after coming from behind to beat Guatemala 3-1 in Kansas City. Carlos Ruiz put the visitors ahead, before a Clint Dempsey inspired fightback secured the points.
The United States, Jamaica, Honduras, Costa Rica and Panama also
progressed to the final round, while Mexico had completed their
qualification two rounds ago. From this final round, the
top three teams advance to the World Cup finals in
T&T ’06 World Cup players still unpaid
It is a shame. Over 6 years after gallantly representing their country in the World Cup finals in South Africa the footballers have not been fully compensated. The Trinidad and Tobago Football Federation (TTFF) has expressed an interest in settling a long-standing money dispute, out-of-court, with the members of the 2006 T&T World Cup team. The TTFF has agreed to meet with lawyers representing the players within two weeks to see if both sides can agree a settlement.
Thirteen members of T&T's 2006 World Cup football team have sued the federation, seeking to recoup a share of the estimated US$40 million in World Cup revenue. The players have said that former TTFF special adviser Jack Warner had offered them a 50 per cent share of World Cup revenue.
They have won battles at the London-based Sport Dispute Resolution Panel and the Trinidad and Tobago High Court over the past six years. Hearings have been taking place in the Port-of-Spain high court this week over the failure of the TTFF to answer contempt of court charges for failing to provide financial records pertaining to revenue collected during T&T's 2006 World Cup campaign.
Sue Jack Warner
The federation gave the undertaking to the Port-of-Spain High court as it appeared to answer possible contempt charges for failing to comply with an earlier ruling by Justice Devindra Rampersad. The ruling required the TTFF to deliver its audited financial record of funds raised leading up to the 2006 World Cup.
Philadelphia reflects US school crisis in America
Priorities! Priorities! Priorities!
Blueprint for Transforming Philadelphia Public Schools," released on April 24, is a sweeping reorganization proposal that includes more than half a billion dollars in budget cuts by 2017. Under the five year plan, 40 underutilized or under-performing schools would be closed next year. Six more schools would be closed each year after that until 2017, bringing the total number of closed schools to 64.
Enough food for all
Priorities! Priorities! Priorities!
In reality, the bulk of industrially produced grain crops goes to biofuels and confined animal feedlots rather than food for the 1 billion hungry. The call to double food production by 2050 only applies if we continue to prioritize the growing population of livestock and automobiles over hungry people.
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