The Times of Malta
Our August peace was again destroyed by the political games of whoever thought it prudent to give credibility to a story that pigs do fly. Increasing popular discontent forced the Nationalist Party to clutch to the silly argument that Labour had to disprove that pigs do fly.
One may have unreasonable but genuine reservation about the autonomy of the Vigilance Board and one is even free to be illogical and disagree with its conclusions.` However one cannot fairly disregard the matter of fact under oath evidence of all those involved in the election process of the MLP Leader in 1992.` Their single and collective evidence conclusively seals the argument that the election process was conducted transparently under effective control systems leaving no room for any irregularities, let alone the stuffing 150 votes under the glaring eyes of the electoral commission and representatives of the contestants.
That the evidence includes that of at least one person who was specifically in charge of protecting the interest of the unelected candidate seals the point beyond further scope for suspicion.
The Nationalist Party having been caught red-handed trying again to de-stabilise their opposition could only reply by confusing arguments. What`s the relevance to the Vigilance Board as to whether or not Pawlu Muscat in the years after the election reproduced copies of his personal vote. The Vigilance Board was not investigating what someone else did after the election but was investigating the integrity of the electoral process. No matter how many votes anybody could have reproduced after the event, that cannot have any effect on the event itself. The important thing is that the event process was controlled in such a way that no duplicate or unauthorised voting documents could find their way to the ballot box.
That five documents failed to be returned, including that of Pawlu Muscat, was a natural exercise of the right to abstain just as much as eight voters exercised their right to invalidate their vote. As to the credibility of Pawlu Muscat for me he scores low on whatever version. My conclusion is based on the integrity of the other thirteen persons who gave evidence under oath in a totally logical, comprehensive and corroborating manner.
The onus of proof that pigs do fly is now clearly and squarely upon those who continue to maintain so.
The moral of the story is that the same group that de-stabilised a validly elected Labour Government in 1998 have now even attempted to de-stabilise Labour from carrying out their function to oppose.
They continue with this tack even after the Vigilance Report.` For the The Times (editorial Surprise, Surprise! - 30 August 2000) only a long winded court procedure can categorically disprove that pigs do fly. Joe Grima insists that Alfred Sant`s entourage is so powerful that they can make fourteen persons, including those who were involved in the process to guard the interest of the unsuccessful candidate, to lie under oath before the Vigilance Board.` This is telling us to believe that Dumbo really flies!
What citizens are really concerned about is how politics have been allowed to fall to this incredible gutter level which is making them feel cheated and unprotected. Citizens demand from their government true account for election promises and of the performance of this administration as it approaches its mid-term mark.
Citizens want to know why they are being made to cough up through additional taxes the Lm100 million which they were promised would annually flow effortlessly from the EU as soon as the PN is re-elected. They want to have solutions to the massive cash flow constraints being built up in the private sector through such massive transfer of resources to the public sector.
Citizens want to know why is it their small businesses have to struggle (and quite unavoidably and rightly so!) to get financial support from the bank whilst an organisation run by a single person managed to squeeze Lm9 million for a rather small car importation business.
Citizens want to know who is going to make good for the doubling of the fuel import bill in the first six months of the year through the off-handed decision of the Minister of Economic Affairs not to renew the oil price hedging agreement beyond Dec 1999 when he had a recommendation to do so in` late in 1998/ early 1999 right when oil was hitting bottom prices. The Minister was then busy criticising his predecessors for making such hedging arrangements which eventually left a profit and peace of mind to Enemalta till Dec 1999.
Small wonder that the Minister of Finance and the Minister for Economic Affairs, who have much to answer for the above, were very imprudently in their writings and press releases parrying criticism by arguing that as a matter of fact pigs do fly.
Thursday, 31 August 2000
The Times of Malta
Sunday, 27 August 2000
Fit-telqa tas-shana t`Awissu ghandi habta nintrefa` mill-agha u l-kakfonija ta` kuljum u nohlom fuq l-affairijet kif nixtieqhom.
Nohlom li f`Malta tibda tirrenja demokarizija vera fejn iz-zewg partiti l-kbar jikkompetu ghall-popolarita ma` l-elettorat fuq pjattorma ugwali. Nohlom li l-Partiti jibdew jaghtu rendikont lill-poplu tal-finanzjament taghhom lill-pubbliku biex tinqata` is-sitwazzjoni anti-demokratika ta` bhalissa li l-Partit Laburista irid jaghraq l-gharaq tad-demm biex jigbor bizzejjed flus bla rbit halli jiffinanzja l-operat tieghu waqt li l-Partit Nazzjonalista huwa sostnut b`mod paxxut mil-flus qawwija ta` minn jahseb li jista` jixtri l-poter.
Nohlom li f`pajjizi nista` nesprimi fehmti bil-liberta` bla ma nigi vitinizzat politikament minn min jahseb li ghandu dritt jikkmanda l-imhuh ta` kulhadd.
Nohlom li dan il-poplu jibqa` dejjem kburi u prottettiv tas-sovranita` u l-helsien tieghu u jahsibha mitt darba qabel ma jippregudika dak li nkiseb b`tant tbatija` ghal xi promessa ta` titjib ekonomiku li bil-ghaqal xorta jkun jista jinkiseb bla ma jigi pregudikat xejn.
Nohlom li pajjizi jqum mir-raqda kiefra li dahhlitu fiha l-mentalita` ta` money no problem li issa qed tikkankra gisimna u na fux kif nistghu infejquha.` Mentalita` li kullhadd jahseb li l-gvern ghandu xi portafoll ma jispicca qatt u li nistghu inkomplu nahlu l-flus taghna stess li nigbru mit-taxxi u mid-djun billi nsostnu sussidji u nfiq li mhux sostenibbli.
Nohlom li pajjizi jerga` jibqa` jghozz il-valuri tax-xoghol, tal-bzulija u tal-efficjenza u nifhmu li biex nghozzu is-sovranita` u l-liberta irridu l-ghaqal li naqtghu il-hela u t-tberbiq.
Nohlom li l-poplu Malti jifhem li l-gid qabel ma tqassmu l-ewwel irid jinholoq u ghalhekk is-servizzi socjali, il-pensjonijiet, u servizz ta` edukazzjoni u sahha pubblika jibqghu biss sostenibbli jekk dal-pajjiz iseddaq il-kompettivita` tieghu fis-swieq tal-esportazzjoni halli jigbed investiment produttiv voluminuz li jippermetti tkabbir rejali ta` l-ekonomija ta` mhux anqas minn 6% kull sena.
Nohlom li pajjizna bil-ghaqal jista` jiffranka hafna flus li llum qed jigu sparpaljati u minflok dawn jigi nvestiti fl-infrastruttura, fis-servizzi socjali u f`incentivi ghall-investiment produttiv tas-settur privat.
Nohlom li ma jibqax jihmarli wicci mal-barranin li jigu fostna meta` jkolli bilfors nurihom it-toroq lunari taghna u l-hmieg kullimkien li donnu l-Ministri taghna tant ghamew li qed jahsbuh ornament.
Nohlom li ma nibqax nhewden li meta daqs tlettax il-sena ohra nasal k`allajrid ghal pensjoni ma nsib xejn mill-flus tas-sigurta` socjali li ga ili nhallas wiehed u tletin sena.
Nohlom li s-servizzi ta` l-edukazzjoni u s-sahha pubblika, bla nfiq zejjed, b`immaniggjar efficjenti u b`rieda tajba, isiru l-aqwa fost servizzi simili biex il-poplu malti, specjalment dak li ma jiflahx, ma jkollux ghalfejn jirrikorri ghal-servizzi privati hlief ghal kwistjoni ta` kumdita` u snobizmu li min iridhom irid ikun pront ihallas ghalihom.
Nohlom li pajjizi jsir l-aqwa destinazzjoni tat-turizmu fil-mediterran fejn apparti l-lukandi 5 star ikollna l-pajjiz kollu ta` l-anqas 4 star u bicca halli nigbdu turisti ta` kwalita` li jigu Malta ghal short break ta` ftit jiem li minhabba c-cokon taghna nistghu noffru proposta unika ahjar minn ta` kull kompetitur.
Nohlom li pajjizi jsir il-mecca tal-cruise liners li jibdew u jispiccaw il-cruises mediterranji taghhom f`Malta.
Nohlom li pajjizi jdawwar l-Universita` ghal wahda internazzjonali li tigbed lejna studenti minn barra li jaghzlu li jistudjaw fostna bi hlas .
Nohlom li l-industrija tal-films tinghata spinta biex Malta ssir film location popolari ma l-aqwa producers.
Nohlom li Malta ssir centru finanzjarju li jhabbatha ma` l-Isvizzera , mal-Lussemburgu u ma l-Irlanda.
Nohlom li l-progetti li ilna nitkellmu fuqhom kwazi 50 sena, bhal tat-tejatru rjal ma jibqghux tpacpic biss izda jsiru rejalta`.
Nohlom li l-finanzi tal-gvern jirrangaw ruhhom permezz ta` tkabbir ekonomiku spettakolari u b`ghaqal fin-nefqa biex il-gvern ikun jista` jaghti spinta lill-ekonomija u jtaffi l-ghafsa tat-taxxi li qed jahilbu lill-familji maltin.
Nohlom, nohlom. wisq nibza li b`dal gvern skadut li ghandna ser nibqa` nohlom.
Sunday, 20 August 2000
Il-Partit Laburista qed jizbalja li dan is-sajf qed jaghti vaganza lin-Nazzjonalisti.` Kieku naghtu vaganza sajfija lill-poplu Malti kollu mil-politika kollha kieku tkun haga sew.` Izda vaganza lin-nazzjonalisti biss billi nirrejagixxu zzejjed ghal kritika li saret rigward l-allegat tbaghbis fl-elezzjoni tal-Leader, huwa zball.
Mhux ghaliex dawn huma l-allegazzjonijiet li wiehed ghandu jinjorhom. Zgur li le.` Jien perswaz li kieku Dr. Sant stess ikun konvint li kien hemm xi forma ta` skorettezza fl-elezzjoni tieghu ikun huwa stess li joffri ruhu ghal gudizzju tal-konferenza generali. Dr Sant diga` ta prova kbira ta` kemm m`huwiex marbut mal-poter. Kien biss Mintoff qablu li ghal darbtejn telaq minn idu il-poter li ggib maghha l-kariga ta` Prim Minsitru. U zbalja kemm zbalja Mintoff fi xjuhitu il-merti ta` ghemilu meta kien fl-aqwa tieghu m`ghandux jittappan b`dak li gara wara.
Izda la l-bicca marret quddiem il-Bord ta` Vigilanza ghandu jinzamm is-skiet halli l-Bord ikun jista` jahdem bil-galbu u minghajr interferenzi jew pressjoni minghand hadd.` Il-Bord irid jizgura li meta johrog ir-rapport tieghu dan igorr mieghu timbru ta` kredibbilita` qawwija biex il-Partit Laburista ma jibqax jgorr warajh xi dell dwar din bicca.` Il-Bord irid jizgura li r-rapport tieghu jaghti xiehda ta` process integru, komprensiv u serju li jasal ghal konkluzjonijiet ragunati u jekk ikun hemm lok ghal xi dubju ragonevoli jindika xi strarrig aktar ghandu jsir. Irid jghati risposta lil dawk li wrew pregudizzju kontra l-integrita` u l-awtonomija tal-bord.
Waqt li nzommu skiet u nuru prudenza fil-kritika taghna lejn min ma jaqbilx maghna ahjar nifhmu li l-veru avversarji taghna huma dawk kollha li jridu joppressaw il-kisbiet li ghamel il-haddiem` Malti tul is-snin. Dawk li jridu jzarmaw is-servizzi socjali u l-pensjonijiet. Dawk li flok jindirizzaw il-problemi tal-pajjiz ikomplu jherru s-sisien billi jarmu l-flus f`hela u f`sussidji insostenibbli biex igibu l-haddiema b`ghazla ta` kif jghidu l-inglizi between a rock and a hard place.
Ghalhekk ma nkomplux naghtu vaganza lin-nazzjonalisti.` Bl-energija taghna flok nahluha fuq min tbieghed u zbalja nerfugha ghal min hataf il-poter b`weghdi fiergha u issa jrid jaljena biex ma nrossuhx halli jaghti rendikont tal-weghdi.
Tiskanta kif f`mument meta kulhadd jaqbel dwar l-izdingar li hawn fil-pajjiz il-Ministru ta` l-Ambjent flok imidd ghonqu ghax-xoghol kbir li suppost qed jaghmel isib il-lajma kollha biex joqghod jikteb fit-Times jippontifika dwar` kif messhom il-laburisti imexxu l-investigazzjoni. Imissna niehdu l-parir ta` dan li jridilna hafna gid u mmorru l-qorti nistennew xi hames snin sa ma l-process jizvolgi!
Bizzejjed wiehed ihares lejn kemm kien dam L-Imhallef Anastasi biex hareg ir-rapport dwar l-allegat nuqqasijiet li suppost kien hemm fil-Mid-Med qabel l-1987 biex wiehed jifhem x`iriduna nghamlu l-avversarji. Wara xi sitt snin investigazzjoni u 37 volum ma nstab assoluatment xejn. Izda n-nies li kienu hammguhom u perrcuhom daqs li kieku kienu xi hallelin ghaddewhom minn trawma li ma nixtiqhiex lill-ghedewwa tieghi ahseb w`ara lil hbieb.
L-energija taghna nerfghuha biex nippressaw in_nazzjonalisti ha ma jkomplux jizolqu milli jaghtu rendikont ta` ghemilhom. Rendikont ta` kif il-Ministru tal-Finanzi wahdu rema Lm50 miljun fil-bejgh tal-Mid-Med.` Rendikont dwar kif sar certu self mill-Bank of Valletta.` Rendikont dwar kif is-servizz tas-sahha pubblika sejjer il-bahar u flok intejjbu dak li ghandna mmorru nisparpaljaw miljuni kbar fi sptar gdid li Alla biss jaf kief u minn fejn se ngibu ir-rizorsi biex inhaddmuh.
Rendikont dwar kif l-iskejjel ta` l-istat sejrin il-bahar u kif qed nitilfu l-pass fit-taghlim ta` l-informatika li minghajra qatt ma nistgu nipproducu studenti lesti biex jiffaccjaw id-dinja tax-xoghol.
Rendikont dwar min se jgorr il-piz tat-taxxi li gejjin fil-budget li jmiss biex jaghmel tajjeb ghall-inabbilita` tal-gvern li jnaqqas l-ispiza tieghu.
Rendikont dwar minn fejn ser ingibu nvestiment gdid biex verament dal-pajjiz javvanza flok norbtu kollox ma l-UE meta na nafux kif, kemm, meta, u taht liema kundizzjonijiet nistghu nsiru membri.
Din hija l-veru agenda taghna. Sa ma johrog ir-rapport tal-Bord tal-Vigilinza l-affarijiet l-ohra huma aljenazzjoni li ghandna niskartawha.
Friday, 18 August 2000
The Malta Independent
An appropriate` vision` for Malta`s future` is not whether to be in or out of the EU but to rid us` from this sorry state of permanent election campaigning and to restore politics to its proper place, important but not all dominating.
It has become almost a curse that Maltese people are not allowed to enjoy their August relaxation` free from the nauseating barks from political leaders, deputies, commentators and those who think that they can shape to their liking the workings of our society.
Two years ago Alfred Sant made the mortal mistake of timing the election so that August of 1998 become a peak` election campaign month rather than a relaxation break.` I could be wrong,` but I have a theory that one of the reasons why Labour was so badly trounced was because the electorate was protesting for having the August peace ruined by untimely electioneering.
Last year we had the industrial dispute at MIA which disrupted our August peace. And this year we have the seemingly endless soap opera of the alleged rigging of Alfred Sant`s election to party leader in 1992.
August should be reserved for relaxation and for detachment from the now routine squabbling over the most petty matters, animal rights included, in order to permit time for reflection. Reflection about what a true little heaven this country could be turned into if we just relegate politics to their proper place in Maltese society.
Reflection on how much more effective it would be if the Lm100 or so million per annum we spend on subsidies and unproductive expenditure were to be re-directed to real investment to clean this dirty place and up-grade it to match the 5 star status which is only found behind the revolving doors of some of our hotels.
Reflect on how much more rewarding it would be if instead of promoting ourselves as a cheap tourist destination susceptible to large fluctuations of demand with the slightest price changes, we promote ourselves as an upper class short stay destination.
Reflect on how much more prosperous we would be if rather than worrying that ST Thomson is getting too big and creating exposure risks, we could attract other investors to have many more ST Thomson-like companies ( Intel,` Cisco and all the others seeking expanded production facilities to solve the demand bottlenecks for micro-chips)` attracted to locate production facilities in Malta where they can source qualified labour coming out of our schools and university.
Reflect on the need to give the country a truly modern status where minorities would have their individual rights respected rather than oppressed by the majority.
Reflect on how much a better place this would be if the media really acts as the guardian of citizens` rights rather than seek to advantage one political party over another.
At least for one month in a year we should be given space to reflect and to dream even if our dreams are shattered in the remaining eleven months.
Sunday, 13 August 2000
Il-Kullhadd Ghadni nistenna!
Qajla wiehed jista` jifhem il-qilla u hzunija tan-nazzjonalisti jekk ma jkunx iggarrab minnha.` Hudu dan li gej b`ezempju zghir.
Hmistax ilu f`din il-kolonna ghamilt stedina cara u diretta lil Ministru tal-Finanzi John Dalli biex jispjega lil-poplu Malti, kif ghandu d-dover li jghamel,` ghaliex ghazel li jbiegh il-Mid-Med Bank bil-mod kif bieghu u dahhal lill-poplu f`telf ta` mill-anqas Lm50 miljun lira.
Ghedtlu biex jispjega ghaliex hu bhala ministru li ghaggel biex jaghmel negozju ta` tant miljuni bla ma talab pariri t`esperti.` Ghala dahhal fil-kalkolu tal-prezz risk premium ta` 6% li permezz tieghu il-Mid-Med flok inbiegh kif suppost ghal Lm140 miljun inbiegh ghal Lm82 miljun. Differenza ta` Lm58 miljun li b`mod pjuttost generuz inbaxxieha ghal Lm50 miljun.
Spjegajt li fin-negozjati min ibiegh ifahhar u jsebbah l-oggett li ghandu ghal bejgh u mhux bhal ma ghamel il-ministru ghabbieh b`difetti li m`ghandux. Ghalhekk mill-ewwel sostnejt li dawk il-kalkoli ghamluhom l-HSBC stess u lill-Ministru bellghuhielu. Ghamilha tal-bully ma esperti u belaghha sa grizmejh b`detriment taghna lkoll.
Mhux l-ewwel darba li ghamilt akkuza bhal din. Din mhix akkuza ta` korruzzjoni jew tbaghbis. Hija akkuza ta` pruzunzjoni u negligenza grassa li ghaliha qed ikollu jhallas il-poplu. Xejn personali kontra l-Ministru izda kritika preciza gusta u fondata fuq il-fatti li ma jistghux jigi michuda.
L-ghada t-tnejn il-Ministru Dalli ghamel bhal ma dejjem jaghmel meta nikkritah u ma jkollux twegiba.` Mar fuq Radio 101 u tghidx kemm qal li jien nitkellem qisni l-infallibbli, ex-kattedra u nippontifika.` Risposta ghal kritika xejn. Izda bhal ma jaghmel min ma jkollux risposta ivvinta argument li ma ghandu xejn x`jaqsam. Qal
Friday, 11 August 2000
The Malta Independent
The nationalist party can continue to its heart`s content pretending` to be a model of democratic values,` but before it comes clean on the sources of its financing we are all living a big lie.
Running a political party needs huge operational and capital financing.` The Labour Party is continually out cap in hand. Its collectors unceasingly go round all towns and villages requesting small contributions from every household.` Fund raising activities are held practically every week and yet the party`s finances are a continuous struggle to make ends meet.
When I was chairing a committee to raise funds for the erection of the new HQ I was amazed by people`s generosity in supporting the fund-raising activities of the party. But I also learned one hard lesson.` Unless one goes knocking on people`s door cap in hand only an insignificant minority would take the initiative to make a voluntary offer.
The Nationalist Party keeps its financing very close to its chest.` They do newspaper ads for contributions but as I said first hand experience shows these normally produce scant` results.` Fund raising activities` are very few compared to Labour`s and yet considering that the nationalist party runs with a much lesser dose of voluntary work than Labour, one cannot but ask questions as to how all this gets financed.
And these questions have to be answered` because they challenge the very essence of democracy.
It is a reliably understood that the Prime Minister occasionally holds consultation meetings with leading businessman at Party HQ. These are private meetings and what is discussed is not revealed. But I feel uneasy thinking that the highest political executive of this country could be exposing himself to obligations towards` donors of substantial funding to his party.
Presently there is a jungle out there in the matter of party financing and for all of us who really treasure democratic values this jungle must be sorted out before it is allowed to chew us all up.
We must sort out the parody of having executives and chairmen of public corporations paid more than the Prime Minister. We must understand how a minister can live on an official salary which does not go as far as financing the presents for all the weddings he is invited to,` especially if his life-style is geared to multiple higher private sector salary which was enjoyed prior to taking on ministerial appointment.
We can either continue duping ourselves thinking we live in a real democracy or we can tell our politicians to stop treating us like idiots and come clean with us. For democracy`s sake` let`s stop offending democracy in the name of democracy.
Monday, 7 August 2000
- Dan il-gvern itemm il-mandat tieghu sa Dicembru 2001, skond l-iskadenza originali tal-gvern laburista tas-1996, halli ssir elezzjoni generali fil-bidu tas-sena 2002.
- Sa dak iz-zmien l-istrutturar ekonomiku li jsir isir ghal wiccna u ghal bzonn li nibqghu kompettitivi f`dinja globali u mhux sempliciment biex naderixxu mar-regoli ta` l-UE.
- L-elezzjoni tas-sena 2002 tkun tiswa` daqs referendum dwar l-UE. Jekk jirbhu n-nazzjonalisti allura l-partit laburista jkollu jaccetta l-inevitabilita` li l-Gvern elett idahhal lil Malta b`mod irriversibbli fl-UE sas-sena 2007 meta tigi fi tmiema l-legizlatura. Jekk jitla` gvern laburista n-nazzjonalisti jkollhom jaccettaw li l-gvern ifittex ftehim fuq il-mudell Svizzeru u li l-kwistjoni tas-shubija fl-UE tkun sparixxiet minn fuq l-agenda politika sa` mill-anqas is-sena 2010.
- Iz-zewg partiti jaqblu li jissottomettu ruhhom ghal verifikar tal-finanzi taghhom minn awdituri mqabbda mill-Ombudsman u li tghaddi legislazzjoni gusta biex iddahhal dixxiplina u trasparenza tant mehtiega ghad-demokrazija vera fil-kwistjoni ta` l-iffinanzjar tal-partiti.
- Isir ftehim fuq persuni accettabbli ghaz-zewg nahat biex isir verifikar awtonomu dwar il-kaz tad-Daewoo, dwar il-bejgh b`irhis tal-Mid-Med Bank u dwar l-elezzjoni tal-leadership ta` Dr Sant fl-1992.
Friday, 4 August 2000
The Malta Independent
If there is one area where government is having undisputed success is in the growth of its ordinary revenue.
During the first six months of 2000 Government`s true` ordinary` revenue ( i.e. excluding revenue from sale of share and other privatisation income) increased by Lm49 million over 1999 and Lm65 million over 1998. This is a year or year increase of 20% and a two year increase of 28%. This is spectacular growth by any standard.
Allowing for 5% normal incremental growth the rest is revenue from new taxes and enforcement of old ones. Small wonder the` cash flow problem in the business sector is getting acute!
Lm 49 million increase in` ordinary revenue over 6 months is roughly the Lm100 million p.a. that in last election`s run-up` people were led to believe would flow easily into our Exchequer`s account as soon as we de-freeze the EU membership application. Instead the revenue is coming from a shift of resources from the private to the public sector to satisfy the latter`s insatiable demand for more and yet more. Recurrent expenditure increased yet another 6% in the first 6 months and with the bulk of the civil service agreement arrears maturing next year one can only anticipate acceleration of the trend.
The seriousness of the deficit problem can be gauged by the simple fact that in spite of taking into account the full Lm82 million` proceeds from the sale of Mid-Med Bank,` gross government debt increased from Lm677 million in June 1998 to Lm880 million in June 2000. A increase of` Lm213 which added to the extraordinary Lm82 million from the sale of Mid-Med give a structural finance gap of Lm293 million over the last two years. If you want another measure as to the size of the problem just realise that government debt has doubled over the last 4 ` years.
With the obstinate avoidance of tackling the problem at its source, i.e. the expenditure side of the public sector, the default solution has to be a melancholic choice of more debt, more taxes or deficit driven privatisations.
The first PN administration simply spent its way through the substantial hoarded resources left by a Labour administration that against professed Kenyesian teaching continued to store and tax even during the mid-80`s recession. The second PN administration piled up debts to keep up artificially the good-feel factor. This gave an incoming labour administration with a single seat parliamentary majority the impossible task of delivering its social promises whilst concurrently addressing the deficit.
This third PN administration is financing the structural deficit it created by taxing us and selling the family silver without addressing the real cause of the problem. When it runs out of taxing capacity and when it has no family silver yet to sell` what else will be left` to administer the real solution which this country is craving for`
The Minister of Finance this week accused me of pontificating and speaking with a sort of ex-cattedra infallibility.` Truly, counter- accusations of pontification come easier than providing real answers to tough questions.