The week got off to a good start with the sentencing of Zekes, and the Minister of National Security taking a bow for the fall in the number of murders (Scotland Yard's ACP Les Green was on The Breakfast Club this morning saying that there were 50 fewer murders in May 2006 than in May 2005).
The usual numerous plans and policies for boosting the security forces were announced, but the only one of even mild interest is the proposal to psychologically screen applicants to the police force. (This sounds like a plan to keep future Renato Adams types out. Couldn't agree more etc.).
The future of SSP Adams is undecided as of today June 2, 2006. I'm still going with the idea of exporting him to deal with terrorists in Iraq….. in Haditha some U.S. Marines seem to have used the same techniques that SSP Adams employs in the performance of his duties….
Audley Shaw responded to Don Robotham's not-at-all-informed-nor-in-the-least-bit-welcome rants on the economy. I wish Mr Shaw had not done this as we were then subjected to Mr Robotham attempting to justify his stance ad nauseam on morning radio. Audley, while understanding your annoyance, remember: Answer fools with silence. – Iranian Proverb
Economic security II
The Government and the unions signed a second Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) on salaries and benefits. The rejoicing was muted by the awkward fact that 2 of the biggest unions, the nurses and the teachers, did not sign. Both these unions are more than 80% female and will be expecting better things from Sister P, now PM Portia….. Not to be outdone, Peter Phillips promptly announced that the police would not be bound by the MOU..
Edith Allwood-Anderson, President of the Nurses Association of Jamaica
I would be happier if the willingness of the unions to sign a second MOU did not mean that the Government continues to employ many more people than it needs. The Minister of Finance himself (recklessly flinging stones around in his glass house) confirmed that the MOU is an excellent illustration of P.J. O'Rourke's saying:
“It is a popular delusion that the government wastes vast amounts of money through inefficiency and sloth. Enormous effort and elaborate planning are required to waste this much money. ”
bad news this week on HIV/AIDS as we're told that it is now the leading cause of death in the Caribbean. Of course, if you're a young Jamaican man I think it is still possible to be murdered long before you get a chance to die of AIDS……
Please note that 51% of people with HIV/AIDS in the Caribbean are female. That means that Caribbean men and women need to stop kidding themselves that it is a gay disease, and that they don't need to use a condom if they are “having sex with the opposite sex”….
Also this week I found a funny response to those who think murdering gays Leviticus-style is a more important statement of morality than New Testament style love and not casting the first stone……. This amusing “letter” to Dr. Laura reminds us that Leviticus also forbids lots of other things beloved of the Jamaican populace…..
The idea that Jamaicans are great churchgoers received another blow this week. Bill Johnson's poll for the Gleaner shows that only 28% of us attend church regularly. May be a surprise to some people.
Marriage and security
USA Today has
an article on a new study conducted by the Centers for Disease Control. The study, dauntingly titled “Fertility, Contraception, and Fatherhood: Data on Men and Women from the National Survey of Family Growth”, surveyed 12,000 men and women in the U.S.. The shocking finding ? More men than women (66% of men to 51% of women) think marriage is better than staying single.
I guess this gives Jamaican women another reason to migrate to the U.S. as quickly as possible. For those of you that aren't great at math, this study suggests that there will be a very substantial number of American men (15%) who will want to get married and won't be able to find any American women to marry them…..
Job security : Office of the Prime Minister
Much is being made of the fact that
the PNP suddenly has lots of candidates who want to run for office, and that this will certainly mean that people who thought that they were shoo-ins for particular constituencies are going to be very unhappy about all the new competition.
Portia on victory night, Feb 2006
Of course, Portia's supporters are being blamed for trying to push out Peter Phillip's supporters. Portia is being blamed for:-
(1) NOT ASSERTING HER AUTHORITY by kicking out the Peter Phillips people and putting her own people in place…..
(2) FOR ASSERTING HER AUTHORITY and running her supporters in crucial seats……
Look for it all to get very amusing over the long hot summer (unless, of course, we have a really devastating hurricane which always manages to concentrate our minds wonderfully…)