The PNM culture of dependency that was introduced in 1956 continues to flourish to the detriment of the national economy. After an oil boom and two gas booms, large sections of the national population have failed to develop a culture of productivity, savings and investments. One thought that the coming of Dr. Keith Rowley in 2015 would have changed this debacle. Unfortunately, he has turned out to be the worst of the lot.
While some have the largesse of the State available to them there are others who are left to look on with empty stomachs. They look on helplessly at the blatant discrimination and should concerns be expressed in a community chat there is unspeakable rage and anger by the perpetrators because in their holier than thou posturing they are beyond reproach. Parbatie, a resident of south Trinidad complained: “Imagine this,,,the defeated candidate in the local government election has food cards and hampers for her supporters while the elected representative has none?” Parbatie continued: “Parties are held in the community center in my neighborhood and children and families are selected on the basis of party affiliation while their neighbours are left out.”
The 2020 General Elections was the ‘hamper election.’ Covid 19 was the excuse to take money from the Heritage and Stabilization Fund for electioneering purposes. The candidates of the incumbent party knew their supporters and hampers were lavished on them. “Those green bags with the PNM logo stacked in vans were distributed to the PNM supporters only,” said Ramesh. “Vans come with hampers pass all the other houses and stop at these two houses and off load hampers and drive away.”
What is the productivity level in the police service or public service? Are we happy with the so many schools that are under-performing? Where are the crime hot spots in this country? To what extent is this dependency culture contributing to the high level of crime in the country? Is this culture of dependency encouraging a culture of entitlement from the state?
It is the self-employed farmers, double vendors, the self-employed auto mobile garages and the customer service representatives of the food franchises outlets that work hard and for little. As for the fire service and the army I would be happy to see a log of the activities for each day to satisfy my curiosity. Who works in the banking and insurance industry? Definitely not the bosses but the glorified tellers and lower rank employees, apt examples of Karl Marx’s false consciousness.
Our farmers get limited or no help from State. The Ministry of Agriculture exists with a Minister, Parliamentary Secretary and technical staff and clerical workers to draw salaries and not necessarily to develop agriculture. What is their contribution of this Ministry and its technical staff to our hard working farmers that continue to produce?
Is there a breeding unit to improve farmers’ livestock? What about the extension service that never worked? Is that failed institution still existing? And the praedial larceny unit and NAMDEVCO? I would very much like these institutions to say how they are helping our farmers in their challenges to produce food.
Are our food importers sacred cows? Why is milk imported and not produced? What is this government’s plan to develop the local dairy industry? What incentives are there to encourage our university graduates in agriculture to enter agriculture? Where are those big mouths who shout Marxist slogans doing to organize farmers?
State welfare is killing the society. It is breeding a culture of dependency and crime and laziness. The grants that are wasted on CEPEP and URP and other makeshift programs to win votes should be redirected to the farmers and other productive groups.
The Prime Minister appeals for Tobagonians to return to the land has fallen on deaf ears. Why should Tobagonians return to back-breaking agricultural work when they are assured of billions annually without the responsibility to account to parliament?
Thanks to PNM’s generosity toward its supporters this country is sliding down hill. Its slogan “we care for you” is destroying the lives of citizens. In the time of abundance this could continue but with the serious down turn in the economy that the country is experiencing such a policy must be revamped.
When the IMF comes into a country all that are considered sacrosanct would be thrown out the window. The government should level with the people by explaining to them the social and economic reality. If this is not done soon too late shall be the cry and the hills of the north can easily transform into a bright flaming red that all the waters in the Gulf may not put out.