Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Of mass deception and paranoia

GRENADA’S Finance Minister Nazim Burke was on one of his tours of mass deception on Wednesday, while avoiding the issue of his dealings with the National Insurance Scheme.

He won’t subject himself to any interview with the Associated Press, the Caribbean Media Corporation or CARIBUDPATE News – but he went on very friendly territory Wednesday, including of course – naturally – the Government Information Service.

He was all over the place declaring that government did not “request” any money from the NIS, while in the same breath stating that government has “business with the NIS” – business that he says is “not wise” to speak about.

He told GBN that the report (I guess supposedly the CARIBUPDATE and/or CC6 one) “is totally false”, yet he told MTV that “this may be so, but..”

Mr Burke went on a well thought-out and orchestrated campaign on Wednesday to try to confuse people and deliberately mislead.

Also disingenuous was his assertion that businesses and institutions do business all the time, but they don’t speak about it.

The government is –well just that – the government who supposedly is beholden to the people. The National Insurance Scheme is not a private credit union or some commercial bank – it belongs to the workers of Grenada technically.

Whatever transactions that go on between the government of Grenada and the NIS are of national interest – and it is fair for people like us to ask questions.

This “none of-your-business” attitude that repeatedly comes from Burke does little credit to his own government.

Burke must stop hiding behind semantics, and state whether what we ascertain as the facts are true or not – no beating around the bush.

Has not government sought 10 million dollars from NIS, offering the organization land and government bonds in return?

Isn’t this the third time for the year the government has gone to the NIS with some “business proposal” so that it can get money to “meet its current bills” – well in our interpretation – to pay salaries?

This writer is absolutely confident that these are the basic facts of the most recent developments – and Burke can look to dance around it how he wants to his own declining credibility.

Most of us who have seen his sleek operations have always known that he is stingy with the truth – no wonder he avoids as the plague any invitation to sit down for an interview, at any time, at any place and under any general conditions of his comfort.

Here is a gentle reminder, my learned friend: The truth needs no avoidance to tough questions.

“We are in business with the NIS. The NIS is in business with us,” Burke told GBN on Wednesday.

Since the Minister has an inability to piss straight – let me break it down for him.

What you are saying, sir, is that you went to the NIS (again) for more money, in exchange for lands and bonds, and it is considering the application

So fair enough – you are in business with the NIS, and the NIS is in business with you.

And what is so sinister about this, that you cannot give a simple acknowledgement?

I suspect the problem with the Minister is that it reminds people of the government’s fiscal crisis, and how he has so badly mismanaged the economy, in yes sure – an otherwise very, very difficult economic environment.

On another note, I caught tonight Burke’s “despicable” responses to comment on the management of the economy by members of the business community.

As true to form, without dealing item by item with the concerns raised, he went on a broadside to question their motive, to suggest that as if they are political motivated and have axe to grind with this government.

Burke even accused members of the Chamber of “conspiring” with the previous government to economically mismanage the country.

Is this Minister of Finance for real?

Or are we seeing a new standard of paranoia that is off the charts by his own consistent sweating state of nervous discomfort anytime he is seriously questioned?

But it should not surprise those of us who have studied this government closely.

From the Prime Minister on down, its standard response to anybody or any group that has been “fresh enough” to ask tough questions – is to use state and other resources to systematically try to smear them.

There is an orchestrated one in full gear against Chester Humphrey for example – the man who was their hero when he was lambasting the previous government – but all of a sudden is the worse human being in town.

They had tried it with Scholar when he sang a critical calypso a few years ago.

The same man interestingly they were running down recently to contest a seat for them in St Patrick’s West. (Good for Scholar he is not as “suicidal” and he is smart enough to stay away from this “burning deck”)

Speaking about Burke’s paranoia – as Lew Smith asked him about the CARIBUPDATE report on the economy – he dismissed it with this retort: “This person has taken a very strong dedicated commitment to try to bring the government down.”

Is that me Sir?

Not guilty!

It wasn’t me that has spent four years fighting for power, bad talking colleagues and undermining leaders. (I have just been commenting on it).

You’ve done a very good job at that – and you needed no help.


  1. Is that the same Minister Burke that I heard the Minister for Education saying to the nation last night--that he was a genious at managing the economy? She also said that Prime Ministers in the region were asking for him to come and help them put their own economy in order.A pack of cards in Grenada seem to have more jokers in

  2. It may be common practice for businesses not to divulge their operations to the public, BUT they report to shareholders.

    Gov't's shareholders are the people of the country who should be reported to either directly through mass meetings, media, etc or though their representatives in Parliament.

    This minister is full of deception & Semantics.