and here they are:
maybe not so funny
refreshing your memory:
the conscience many political clowns lack
selection of acts in Curaçao's political circus, starting with the most recent ones.
our 10th year
nothing to be thankful for
We started out with only the really clownish acts
but things soon got out of hand—
so many dirty tricks that we must remember
what's the difference?
Cuba, Curaçao: cutting the cake
Francis Ford Coppola - The Godfather II, 1974
"The only people who don't want to disclose the truth
are people with something to hide."
Grimm Fairy Tale
Once upon a time (2005) there was a bastard prince who drove around much too fast
in his uninsured, untested and unlicensed car.
He knocked over an old woman, killing her, and drove on.
Later he became prime minister of his country, where he continued his criminal career.
Then he was caught and brought to justice! And we all lived happily ever after.
I warned you, it's only a fairy tale. But grim, that part is true.
Prosecution of this crime has now been barred by lapse of time
but there may be other ways to get him.
read more here
another year gone
remember to change your bookmark to
Don't Count on It
Ciova, chief of the trade unions, is disappointed because despite all promises of the former government (that would be the Gang of Shorty-Wiels-Cooper) nothing has been done about a lot of labor laws. He also wishes ministers "and other dignitaries" would forfeit 20% of their salaries and pay their own utility and telephone bills. Lots of luck with that.
Stick to It Like Glue
Ex MFK finance-minister Imalootin still has to give 2, or maybe 3, iPads back, plus 3 or more 9mm guns, plus his official car. If he doesn't come through, he'll have to pay up.
They Don't Agree
Ex-Interim PM Betrian does not think that the new government will finish the job in six months, as they announce they will. Betrian estimates 1.5 to 2 years are needed. Especially the civil service is a mess. Don't we all know it (except the civil servants, not what you'd call a negligible percentage of the population.)
Next PM PS Hodge thinks six months is sufficient to make a new start. Too bad
hisWiels's party has done nothing about that in the last two years. Cft financial supervision feels the budget is much more solid than those of the past, but does not agree with Hodge's stated approach.
The story going round the people is, Wiels plans to steal in six months what took PAR nineteen years. No doubt it's a jest. Dûh.
The cat cracker is starting up! Lots of stench, smoke, soot and noise. Took the refinery only 38 weeks—if they get it to work this time.
The first four days, the WHO norm of 200µg/m3 of SO2 in the air were exceeded by over twice that.
Six More Months of Suspense
Next PM Hodge thinks that before a decision can be made on the new hospital, in inventarisation must be made. About time, too: hasn't that been done yet? He thinks it will take longer than his six month term, which seems to mean a definite Adieu! to quackie Constancia's and Ballast-Nedam's fanciful plans.
The national payments balance will have shrunk from negative 507 millions of guilders in 2011 to about 100 millions this year, thanks mainly to more exports and tourism and also less imports. Tightening measures of the Central Bank have helped as well.
The country's 2013 proposed budget is balanced, for once. If it works out that way.
His Own Ideas
While Cft financial supervision has some, or many, good questions about the proposed 2013 budget, new PM Hodge doesn't agree with it either. He is not at all for the cold turkey approach, but would rather spread the misery over several years. He also feels that the government "should" have enough discipline of their own (we've seen how that works out) and wants to get rid of Cft.
I dare say.
Cft mainly has problems with the substantial call on borrowing capacity. As long as there's no guarantee for balanced budgets, long-term borrowing is a no-no. Which also applies to that blasted new hospital.
More Trouble for Aqualectra
KPMG accountants have not accepted the utility's 2010 annual report. Bad news, because they have to borrow USD85m now from a total of over $150m. This is to maintain their main plant and thus save 50m on fuel costs, they say.
Former Aqualectra director Martina, on the list of new ministers in spite of a possible conflict of interests because of his present job as bank director, is quite prepared to let his bank lend Aqualectra the money.
The problem is also caused by the transfer of 62m guilders worth of BOO shares to Isla refinery in 2011. No word about those expensive wind generators, though, but that was only to be expected.
To Laugh or to Weep, That's the Question
Van der Dijs will not go to court to fight his dismissal as a commissioner of Isla refinery. What he does plan to do is set up a foundation Hustisia Sosial Kòrsou [social justice Curaçao] which will "denounce the misdeeds of directors", no doubt meaning those of government-owned companies.
I'm sure he's quite the expert there.
Daft dictator Wiels, modest as always, declares that the new cabinet shouldn't be called "cabinet Wiels" but "cabinet Soberano". It is not his cabinet, after all (but we'll see about that). Then he continues with a lot of blah blah in which he keeps referring to himself, not his party, as "we"! It's downright embarrassing. And ridiculous, you got that straight.
Wiels's idea? suggestion? pitch? scheme? (it's hard to find the right word) to install a "social fund" to which all businesses contribute "2 or 3%" of their turnover has not found a ready audience at VBC (enterprisers club) where he had the temerity to introduce it. Comments VBC that this is sure to reduce employment opportunities, with times as hard as they already are. And besides, they add, 25% of the national budget, 400 million guilders, is already reserved for social development, anyway.
The world was supposed to meet its end once again, last week... something to do with a Maya calendar; them old has-beens. So, now our up-to-date Post publishes "Maya" stamps, with that date on it and all. As if anybody still uses stamps. Give me a bar-code any day! At least it runs less chance of being stolen by a crazed collector.
Some Sort of Sorry Record
This really calls for breaking out the Yohoho! bottle of Rum: this year I managed not to hear one single Sinterklaas or Christmas carol. I admit never to listen to the radio or watch television, but still, there's the supermarkets always ready to jump out at you.
Spirits Up, Fuel Down
The day after Christmas gasoline is going down to 2.0634/l (-28 cents), diesel 2.075 (-5), electricity 0.74/kWh (-4) and water 12.54/m3 (-15). One can only grudgingly agree, these interim guys seem more serious than any government we remember.
Free Education Flop
PS's "free" education will not only not happen, it's much worse: those parents who were promised their money for books back if they'd advance it, have been waiting for five months now and will have to wait who-knows how much longer. Foundation for Education Financing (SSC) is waiting for 300 million guilders it's supposed to get from the government, and seems pretty desperate if it'll ever get them.
Here's Some Good News!
The PS ministerial candidates' names have now been released, and for the time being the gross dictator, Arsjes, ex head of Staten parliament will not become PM.
Maybe they keep him in reserve for the next cabinet, to follow in six months, though.
Old Story Cont'd
Raad van Advies [advisory council] complains that with the new budget some paperwork is missing. No doubt; they already requested this on September 6, over three weeks before the coup d'état farce.
Cooper's Gone, His Heritage Not
Two years ago there were enormous problems because of long and heavy rainfall. Parts of Saliña in Willemstad (among which the proposed location of the new hospital) were flooded, and the roads have hardly been repaired since. Yesterday, we had another downpour (we got 120mms worth here) with virtually the same result. MAN Mudbelly Cooper must have had better things to do at his ministry than fix problems; like making some extra money on the side (maybe perhaps possibly).
In April 2012 Dutch KRO TV broadcasted a program on Shorty and his Gang which Shorty did not really enjoy. First he asked for a correction, but refused to appear in an October election program to counter the accusations. He finally started proceedings, for which he enlisted one of the most prestigious and expensive lawyers in the Netherlands—who will send the bill to Curaçao government.
Less Civil Servants
By the end of November, there were 303 less of 'em than the 4914 of January 1. That's 6%! At this rate, we'll be rid of them all in seventeen more years.
The new 2013 budget uses a "cold turkey" approach: deprive the addicted government of its drug, money, in one fell swoop and repair the present damages ASAP. That's fine—until the next government comes along that sees its way free to liberal spending. But by all means, let's do it, it's a start.
Curaçao has spent $515 on medical costs (2011) which makes it #2 on a list of 64 countries. But the money spent on each per inhabitant is only average. It's hard to interpret the press article, but if I got it right this can only mean that an inordinate amount is spent on administration. As was to be expected.
"Harmful to Health"
The government will be missing out on 5m guilders/year because of the zero sales tax tariff on fruits and vegetables. (By the way, does this also apply to canned f&vs? Guess not.) They will try to make it back on "luxury products" and "products that are harmful to health." Like what? Pretty vague, that; could be anything, like patent-leather high-heeled dancing shoes. I'm trepidating already.
Oh and speaking about budgets you know, that "free education" still doesn't appear on the 2013 budget.
Van der Dijs's firing as Isla refinery commissioner will be final as from next Thursday, December 27; unless he has one more trick up his sleeve, which doesn't seem probable. Happy holidays, van der Dijs!
When ex-PM MFK Shorty's
moll camp followersecretary-general Stella van Rijn, who had been granted a "vacation", tried to return to her post in Ali Baba's Grottothe Fort Amsterdam ministry building, she was refused admittance and sent away with a flea in her ear. She was "too politically colored" said DIM PM Betrian. Why am I smirking?
Van Rijn is now suing the government to get her job back. She says that she is in no way affiliated with MFK (except she's a party member). Let's hear one of those howling, ripping, roaring, shouting, shrieking and snorting belly laughs!
Articles in the local press claiming DIM PM Betrian gets a 40k/month salary ($18k) have been denied by him. Gee, I wonder how much he does get?
Shortly we will witness the usual musical chairs with a change of the guard: many civil servants will be sent home (keeping their salary checks) as long as they don't come to their jobs. Others will no doubt come back to
workoccupy their seats.
The 2013 budget, which was presented in parliament in time, will not be discussed or voted on before January 7th. They don't have time, or don't feel like it, whatever. So we'll start the new year with no budget; you get used to it.
Those in the know say that this is the most stringent packet of economizing measures the country has ever seen, even beating those pressed between 1997-99 by the Int'l Monetary Fund. Good! But the question is how much of that will be accepted by Staten. Bad!
It doesn't really deserve a mention, but ex-PM Shorty is very critical about that budget. It's full of mistakes, he says; no doubt, but he's hardly the one to talk.
Now, Other People Run The Show
Say thirty years ago when you ordered a "bomb" of cooking gas with Curgas (then called NAGM, Nederlands-Antilliaanse Gas Maatschappij) it was delivered in less than two weeks. We lastly ordered one end of October—just called to ask and they told us they "were working on September." Oh. If we get it in January, that will have taken over four times as long. But who's counting? (Everybody who's afraid to run out of gas, that's who.)
We use, say, two bombs a year. If you use twice as many, it's getting much too close for comfort.
No Mercy! Pay Up
Some government bureau has decided that the sudden Hato airport tariff raises are really kosher after all and must go through. "Part of the increase will be used by CAP to finance improvements at the airport." I am very sorry I even have to make this clear: but a business man would not even think about making his customers pay for future services; price himself out of the market right away.
Then, not a word of comment on the all-too-sudden introduction of these tariffs, just making us put up with a fait accompli.
And finally, what exactly are those "future services"? Harebrained money-wasting schemes for alternative energy? Building a space-port pipe-dream which hardly anybody of us could ever possibly use?
Please, fix that torn and yecch filthy upholstery now. Disgusting is le mot juste. A disgrace; this is how we treat our tourists and our own people.
Oh yeah, and they also need the extra money to have the airport upgraded back. But hey, that's what we pay taxes for—nothing to do with airport operations.
That Would Be Nice
PAIS will help PS Wiels to get the 80-20 laws on the books. However, they should not be racist. That would be nice, just like Pennies from Heaven.
On the 14 December Isla refinery shareholders' (there's only one, the country of Curaçao) meeting not only was the entire board of commissioners fired; it was also decided to hold them legally responsible for all damages incurred by the refinery.
Oh and by the way you know, van der Dijs was also fired as a president of the Supervisory Board of IUH (Aqualectra). He protested in the strongest terms (yaaaaahwn). To be quite honest, I'd have protested myself... hey, what else is there left to do for the
poorguy? Maybe move to Tahiti or some other "tropical paradise" and count his money. He'd enjoy that.
Ecolution Takes It Easy
The greenest ship in the world has been underway for five weeks now and has already left Puerto de Mogan, a port of Las Palmas, Canary Islands. Godspeed!
Bring It on, We Can Take It
On that glorious date of 10-10-10 Curaçao island had 400 million guilders in the coffers. Two weeks ago, only 125 million was left (now only 90m of which 45m blocked by the Central Bank). And mind, pots'o'money have come in since then as well, don't forget. DIM Jardim predicts that the government will run into financial trouble between April and September next year. Also, Jardim expects the economy to shrink with 7.7% but hopes to reduce this to -2.2%. Maybe, he says, in 2015 we'll start growing again. Then again, maybe not.
parasitescivil servants union has no good words for their x-mas bonus being reduced to only 250 guilders. It's the responsibility of the government to find alternate solutions and not sacrifice their loyal hard-working employees, they say. Sure, sure.
Gone, But for How Long?
Regardless their last-moment email protests, the board of commissioners of Isla refinery has been fired. They have announced they will go to court. But for now, good riddance.
New Hospital on Budget 2013
160 million guilders has been reserved on next year's budget, mainly to remediate the present hospital's debts. DIM Jardim says he prefers a government initiative that's run by a third party. That might blow Quackie Constancia's cute little plan.
CPA port authority has made a profit! For the first time in history, they say. How is it possible they were always losing before? you ask. Well, that's easy: CAP last year got rid of their Panamá towing company KTK. They further brought down costs by reducing the car fleet, business trips and daily allowances. Hey, that might work for the government as well!
The bad news is, they lost their monopoly in the harbor so now other companies can come in and compete.
Plain Bad News
Curaçao inflation was 3.2% this year (measured November '11 to December '12) while the economy did not grow or even shrank. So most of us are that much poorer.
Happy Holidays and Merry Christmas!
PS Wiels has noticed that there's a definite trend for workers not to want a blue-collar job. Like anybody, they'd prefer to sit in an airco office, and this starts with selecting their education. So there's a definite shortage of blue-collar workers.
Guess how Wiels thinks to solve this: by central planning. No doubt an idea he picked up from the Castro-Chávez corner (with their smoothly running economies).
DIM Adriaens now acts as if advisory BTU&P agency failed when she agreed with the enormous tariff raises of Hato airport and wants an "explanation"; the fact is that she raised the tariffs more than BTU&P advised. Also, the airport told their customers in advance exactly of the higher prices they would have to pay. Then, the yearly airport running costs are less than 60m guilders; for which they already received about 90m, which now becomes about 115m/year.
It's just a coïncidence of course that the minister is a sister of Hato's director. Of course!
The government worries about our health, pollution and many other things we don't care enough about. So they raise purchase tax on that sort of products from 6 to 9%. That'll teach us! and bring in some handy cash, as well.
Not only the much-maligned fast foods are punished; all restaurants must pay more. Even if you run a vegan vegetarian health-freak salad bar, pay up.
But fruit and vegetables will go down from 6 to 0%. Hey, howzdat, gang? That's a proposal by ex-sheikh of stagnation el Hakim, who's been out of the running for several months already. He promised in May, must have been busy with other things.
FKP public housing is on strike, mainly because the rent subsidy has been cut off. Since then, there's no money to repair anything like leaking roofs and plumbing problems; maybe worse, people who are now obliged to pay their full rent run a danger of being kicked out of their homes.
The Governing Accord
It has been presented, after four versions nobody agreed on; in Papiamentu—of course! So I won't bother to upload it for you. Besides, it's just hollow hollering and I couldn't one single practical thing they've planned. Did we really need to waste money, now, on celebrating that inanity?
Wiels is back at chasing his chimera and of course all faithful followers in the coalition agree with the daft dictator: the 80/20 law will be re-introduced. Notwithstanding all problems with legality and, maybe more to the point, that it's a downright racially discriminating measure. Exactly what Wiels is always raving and ranting against.
Wiels's Wacky Words
The Daft Dictator is not even in the saddle yet but has already presented his first simpleton scheme: all private enterprises must pay 2% and all government enterprises 3% of their sales into a Fund Social Responsibility. After all, we all have plenty of money, what with 2% more old age premium to pay, higher sales tax (not to mention the exorbitant profit tax). Hey, why not ask everybody 2% extra tax? It isn't clear yet if this will be on a volunteer base or whatever.
Wiels has always been a "social worker", so like all government-paid workers he believes enterprise is just loaded with plenty to spare. Why, they even make profits! And after all, don't all civil servants wallow in the swill-trough filled by us? Q.E.D.
Wiels is acting and bragging like the majority of the people have selected him, and I'm sure he believes it; but his cabinet has only 46% of voters' support.
Got a Point
PAR Leeflang asks DIM Bodok about those plans to build that new hospital with a private loan. Her problem is that later on the government will be forced to take that over.
She also feels that, as the old hospital wants to start working on a new hospital themselves (hey, are you still there? your eyes look glassed over) we might get stuck with two hospitals, something we definitely don't need and can't afford.
"Peace, Quiet and Prosperity" is the title of the governing accord that today will be signed in public on Brionplein. That's supposed to make it transparent, I guess; too bad we have no inkling what's in it. Also they had to steal my 12*12/2nd birthday for it. I hope it rains and am glad we won't have any more of those loony dates in the future. First 10-10-10, now 12-12-12... enough already.
Formateur Camelia is mad at PAIS because they released the names of candidate ministers. They should have been kept secret as they haven't passed the screening yet. So, if they don't pass the screening we're not allowed to know?
Cft financial supervision does not necessarily agree with the idea that the new hospital can be financed privately, without any governmental support. No matter how, Cft says, it is important to first make the health care system stable before taking on new obligations.
Shut up, Shorty
MFK's ex-PM Shorty claims the interim government has discovered the great profits Isla refinery makes and now wants to snatch those. Sparing you all the befuddled details, Shorty claims that the refinery was a mess two years ago and now it's working just fine. Which no doubt explains why it has not been producing for most of this year. Anyway, the refinery may pay well for some people, but not for the stockholder: Curaçao government.
Shorty also claims that in the seven years before his government, USD270m has "disappeared" from BOO power plant to "a New York bank" instead of having been invested. He may be jealous, which doesn't make his claim less unthinkable. It might help if he mentioned what bank.
Wiels in Holland
PS Wiels has gone to Holland for meetings with Dutch minister Plasterk on the "consensus rijkswetten" [kingdom laws]. Wiels claims these contradict international jurisdiction (as if he'd even know what that means) and would bite the dust at once upon testing. Then, he goes on to say those same laws cannot be abolished.
Now Jardim Gets a Push
Cft financial supervision has warned interim minister Jardim that the 2013 budget should be presented on December 15 (that's next Saturday), so it can be discussed and accorded before January 1.
Jardim did get the budget in parliament on December 14, one day early!
IATA Joins Protesters
Now it's IATA International Air Transport Association protesting (a very uncommon act for them) the outrageous 150% tariff raises of Hato airport. While it's customary to discuss these between partners and announce them four months in advance, these were just announced three days before they were introduced. This is bad for airlines, tourism and the economy—and we may add "the airport" to that list.
Nothing new here, though. It's quite customary for our government and its institutions to turn the thumbscrews tighter, instead of trying to reduce costs. IATA complains that they have not had a chance to look at CAP (Hato's) figures, but that rather than offering a better product for which they can charge more, Hato wants passengers and airlines to pay in advance and meanwhile offer a crummy service.
First Fat Lies
Wiels stated proudly, when announcing the 12-12-12 celebration, that all candidate ministers had been screened by Curaçao security VCD and for unusual transactions, all that (it's quite a list). But formateur Camelia only just now started the screening procedure. That might explain why we don't get to hear their names.
PAR Leeflang gives an interesting account of the deliberations between PS and PAR on the cabinet formation. For PS read Wiels, as we all know; there may be all kinds of things wrong with PAR but it still is a party.
2012-11-07: PS invites PAR for an 2nd informative meeting but before that has taken place,
2012-11-09: PS states that the differences with PAR are too great to join a cabinet
2012-11-21: PAR writes formateur Camelia they are prepared to join the formation
2012-11-26: Camelia replies they have to contact all parties on their own
hey, what is this, anyway? That's his job!
2012-11-29: Wiels declares PAR cannot join, though another meeting was planned for next day,
2012-11-30: at 14:00; but that very morning Antilliaans Dagblad publishes Wiels told 'em PAR can only join six months later
You know, I tend to believe Leeflang.
Let Us All Celebrate! Or Else...
Next Wednesday there will be a great party lasting several hours to celebrate Wiels's new cabinet. "We have now buried the battle-ax between Si and No and will go on to a fully autonomous Curaçao!" (Translation: The Si camp has been rendered harmless and from now on we, the No-sayers do as we please. Funny thing is, the only people who kept nagging about that split always were the No-sayers.)
The government agreement will be signed there in public, as if that makes it transparent and democratic. But nobody has an inkling what's in that agreement, or who those new ministers will be.
Really reminds me of those great manifestations of Nazi Germany; only, we're mere amateurs. Can't even march in step... Besides, who's paying? Yes, we... I know... but there's no money for anything and now we get this rubbish on our plate?
Another thing in style: every month, Wiels announces, there will be a "state of the union" to keep the people informed of social developments and government plans. This sounds suspiciously inspired by Castro's notorious hours-long speeches and Chávez's cadenas. But for now, we're not even informed of the names of the ministers?
Leaving in Style
Our plenipotentiary minister in den Haag, Osepa, got disgusted when they threw a surprise goodbye-party for him in the "Curaçao house". They had asked him to join a personnel meeting, but when he walked in and "was received with loud cries of 'Surprise!'" he turned around and shut himself in his work room. Says Osepa he always made clear he "didn't like that kind of trimming, but obviously nobody listened." As Osepa tells it, the guests then quietly faded away one by one.
Kudos for Osepa: his act in in sharp contrast to Wiels's.
The Company They Keep
Three guys published a letter deploring PS Wiels's activities, after them having supported his struggle for our autonomy for seven years—and now, he's selling them out. They sound nobly magnanimous in their honest outrage. However, one of them is Anthony Eustatius, Isla refinery commissioner; and another is Peppie Sulvaran, who played an important role in the Campo Alegre Coup that eight years ago brought FOL Godett to power.
PS Wiels hasn't even started out with a new government coalition yet and already he's in trouble. His radio show, which used to attract some 700 listeners, has fallen back to about 175. People feel betrayed and left in the lurch. We are not surprised; the surprise should be that guys like that keep being able to fool the people. For too long a while; what a waste.
Throw him on the rubbish-heap with Godett, already.
Jellinek: More Problems
After the yuppie drug-habit kick-off clinic was allowed to finish their treatments for current patients, they nevertheless took on new patients which was an absolute no-no. The inspector of health found out during a "surprise visit" to the clinic.
Fire The Whole Bunch
The interim government plans to fire the entire board of commissioners of Isla refinery, including van der Dijs. No doubt the board has other ideas and it's not over, yet. Van der Dijs, who's also on Aqualectra utility's board, will be fired there as well.
Besides, the meeting is now planned on next Friday, December 14, two days after the new coalition plans to sign their agreement. So it may well backfire, still.
The refinery workers support the government's decision and will stop supplying the fuel stations with gas, if deemed necessary. The board of commissioners plans to sue the government.
Isla Union Action
Isla refinery trade union PWFC threatens a general strike if the government by tonight 24:00 has not re-instated director Mensche. This could get to be real fun! PWFC feels that the Commissioners are "deliberately obstructing" procedures there. They even mention the words Cosa Nostra - hey, isn't that the mafia? Shades of Shorty.
Ballast-Nedam, Sona and Ursona announce that a private bank is prepared to lend the money for NHN. Hey, don't blame me for all those insane names, it's all about the new hospital. Then, when Curaçao is allowed to borrow money again, the government can assume the loan. Later... nobody knows how much later. Sona says they're "surprised" that Sehos is sick of dealing with 'em and admit they can hardly bypass Sehos. They still plan to, though.
Crooks Getting Nasty
Take-away restaurant El Toro is closing. They have been robbed three times this year already, and another assault last week failed only because a cop happened to be nearby. The owner says he knows that in January seven other restaurants will close, for the same reason. It just ain't safe anymore in Curaçao to run a restaurant.
We may complain, and rightly so, that our economy is going downhill like in a barrel over Niagara Falls; but let's not forget that Surinam, which went independent in 1969, is number 7 on the list of 157 countries where the population lives below the poverty line: 70% of them.
By the way, the Gaza strip is number 46 with 38%; way better than Bolivia or Mexico. Or Surinam. So much for propaganda. (Holland is 138 with 10.5%; Curaçao is not listed.)
Now, Let's Get Serious
Next Monday it will be decided if Alvin Koolman, like Mensche ex-Isla director, will start investigating a technical analysis there which should be done in two weeks. Rumors persist that during the past eight months "many dubious transactions" have taken place (probably not a coïncidence that's during the "renovation" of Isla.)
Next, Smoc lets us know, comes a three-month financial investigation. People have been
earninggetting salaries of 90,000/month - dollars. Political pressures have made the refinery order equipment that was unusable against inflated prices while it did not bother to offer personnel proper training.
Hear Him Talk
It looks pretty definite that PAR is out of the new government. Talk of the town was that they might get in, but there the differences start. PAR says outright that PS and PAIS did not want PAR in the cabinet. PS Wiels states they did, but PAR "disqualified itself; it gave no indication whatsoever on being interested in working together. The PAR doesn't advocate peace and rest in the community, and has rejected our extended hand."
And he continues: "I knew this was going to happen. This party entertains feelings of revenge. The public interest is not important for the PAR but its urge for power and revenge. That's why I never wanted to work together with the PAR." Oh. And I thought he just said he did? Extended hand and all?
Took Them a While
Sehos Hospital has finally decided to start working on a new hospital themselves, without awaiting whatever plans they are saddled up with. They point out that they have hardly been consulted for Quackie Constancia's plans on the former Amstel terrain, in spite of Sehos management's 157 years of experience running the hospital.
The management firmly declares they prefer to start incrementally expanding and replacing the hospital in its present location.
Director Refinery Suspended
Temporary (three months) Isla refinery director Mensche, appointed by the interim government, has been suspended by the board of commissioners. He's accused of following the orders of the government and trying to get two commissioners fired (I shouldn't wonder). Now they want him to stay away from the refinery and hand over all info on it he has. Sounds like a power game; I'm really curious to see who'll win.
The Latest: Two commissioners of Isla will be fired by minister Jardim next Friday (that's tomorrow). Still later: that meeting has been postponed.
We hear precious little about that new coalition-cabinet we were promised to get by last Friday. Nothing but rumors, like "PAR wants to throw traitor Sulvaran out" and "No, they want to throw their new party head out." The rest is silence. No doubt because there's plenty of infighting going on, plenty.
Several departments of Sehos hospital recently had to be closed because of infections with Klebsiella bacteria (normally a pretty innocent until it breaks loose). Two to five people may have died because of this. The investigating committee blames very poor hygiene for the outbreak, and is dissatisfied with the slow management's reaction. (When the Intensive Care had to be closed, a party was thrown in there.) In short, it was a filthy mess.
Why Should They Care
ABVO civil servants union wants their christmas bonus just like all years, even though DIM Jardim says there's no money for it (1 million guilders or 250/each (which makes it easy to figure we're still stuck with 4000 blood-thirsty parasites, 1 per 35 inhabitants). Yes, they certainly keep up their style.
We will get to know the names soon enough; they're from PS, PAIS and PNP, but they insist this is not a "political" cabinet but a "task" cabinet. PAR and/or MAN will be invited six months from now when it will become political, but now they're not welcome because it's not political. You follow? Neither do I.
SER social-economic council warns that the proposed basic health insurance is no more than a short term austerity measure, serving to balance the government finances. The insurance budget is based on an economic growth of 1%, but during the past ten years average growth has been 0.7%; so this will only lead to more cash deficits.
Next day, PAR's Leeflang proposed a joint health insurance with Holland. PS nor PAIS will like that.
Musta Bought a Computer!
Domeinbeheer [domain management] makes it known that they have 80 million guilders coming in on overdue leasehold payments. Most of this (unexpectedly) is owned by holders of large leases. Next year, lease holders will receive invoices over 2011 and 2012. Then, presumably, over former years.
With all respect due, which is next to nothing: what have all those
scroungerscivil servants been doing all those years? Collecting bribes, is one good guess. And then, how difficult can it be to send out bills for all years past? A private enterprise would do it before your vomit hits the floor.
Could This Be a Shady Deal?
Giant shopping mall Sambil, now in construction, has never been discussed in the former cabinet. Journalist Cooper states that last Monday he "found in his mailbox" several papers having to do with it, but PM Betrian has never seen a thing about it and feels a project that size should have been discussed by several ministries. Since then, a building license and a tax holiday promise have turned up. Could somebody, some bodies, possibly have been bribed?
Another Shorty & His Gang Legacy. A prime example of expansive Venezuelan neo-colonialism.
Sambil is part of a Venezuelan super-enterprise and will easily become the largest mega-mall of Curaçao. 142,000 m2 (35 acres) will contain 135 shops, 9 cinemas (doubling the present total) and any number of restaurants. Curaçao tradespeople have been expressing their worries about this monstrosity, which has been thrown into our collective laps as an accomplished fact. Not to mention the hopeless traffic snarls that will result.
But the 2000 new jobs Shorty promised during his election campaign actually may be a mere 300, even though MAN Cooper claims there will be more.
Harold Daal's Come-Back
The judge pronounced that Daal was improperly fired as head of the civil registry, and must be reinstated, complete with all his former rights. May cause a lot of fresh in-fighting there at Kranshi.
He Kept His Promise
Dem. int. min. Jardim (one does get tired of spelling it all out, from now on it's DIM) has lowered the gasoline and water prices and increased that of diesel oil, because of changing market conditions. At least the guy sticks to his declared intentions.
There's Life in the Old Junk Heap Yet
Once again, MIL high school was forced to close down and send their pupils home because of powerful stench, smoke and smothering smoky fumes emanating from Isla refinery. Might they be trying for another start-up? On the Q/T, of course; it may not work out.
At It Again
DAE air once again will sue InselAir in court. They are sick and tired of Insel director Heerenveen's negative statements in public. This time it's about their flight schedule expansion from 4 to 8 weekly flights CUR-PBM, which made Heerenveen comment DAE was the government's favorite and insinuated that was because of bribery. They have been suing before but now want more than a public below; they go for the
Van der Dijs, Come to the Front of the Classroom
Interim minister Jardim (still demissionary, but still...) now has invited Oswald van der Dijs, Isla refinery board member, to come and explain what's been going on the past two years. Never give up hope: maybe Oswald has a faint inkling. But I doubt it. What he could tell is what he's been busy on, but again, I doubt if he'll open up about that. Just this faint inkling I have.
Don't know about Van der Dijs, but my inkling turns out to be right: he walked out of the discussion in a huff. So now they want to fire him from his function; about time as well. But Van der Dijs isn't worried. He says. Latest: he'll be relieved from his function at Aqualectra as well.
While DAE airline has announced daily flights to Paramaribo, Surinam arch-competitor InselAir has protested. Without getting more details, we read that there is supposed to be a maximum of eight flights a week, of which InselAir already executes four.
DIM (dem. int. min.) Adriaens later declared DAE could go ahead and anybody could have "unlimited" flights CUR-PBM.
There's Money in Them Ministries
PS Cordoba announces that he has been offered two million guilders if he leaves the party, thus ruining the coalition. He has told the party about this, but neither Cordoba nor PS have lodged a complaint. The public ministry finds it "a bit strange" that a police functionary doesn't know how to follow the proper procedure.
Former alleged bribes offered to three MFK members are still under investigation.
This Is So Stupid
The UN want to "regulate" the internet. For one thing, if that works out for them you can say goodbye to cheap phone calls via Skype or Google Talk, there are more. These compete the hell out of all "national" telephone companies. I can call China (all lines, not just Skype) for a month for the Grand Total of $1, all-in. A regular phone call costs more than that per minute!
Funniest or saddest part of this is, the internet, and Skype, work over regular phone lines. Hang on guys, give the thumb-screws another twist.
Costs Down, Personnel Up
Interim minister Jardim announces there have been very few governmental synergy attempts since 10-10-10. Don't we know it; as if there ever were. Remember Parkinson... Jardim says the government apparatus can save 20-30 million guilders (per month? guess per year). There's a superfluous amount of copying machines and official cars—I bet. Interoffice telephone calls will be using VoIP (for the unlettered: Skype or Google Talk) in the future to save a substantial amount. Gee, they really thought of that?
But not to worry, civil servants: No personnel will be fired. To the contrary, the absolute stop on hiring is over; but that doesn't mean no more people will be hired. They say. Wanna bet?
Remember, getting rid of the twice-too-many personnel in civil service was how the independence was sold by the politicians.
That's a New One
Formateur Camelia stated that he didn't feel like going out to talk with PAR; if PAR wanted to contact the other parties they should do so, one by one. I wonder what they pay this man for! Gee, I wonder what they pay him anyway.
Meanwhile, parties PS, PAIS and PNP have come to an accord about how to share the
lootthe ministers' posts: 5 - 4 - 1 and ex-PAR Sulvaran 1. The turncoat! The traitor! They will remain in charge for three to six months (why bother) and no one knows what happens next. But there are still talks of sharing with more parties, and there's at least one conflict of interests clearly indicated.
Tax Way Out
Far Out it remains, but this about the 7% tourist tax for hotels: it will be turned into an 8% sales tax after heavy protests by smaller, local hotels who did not belong to a large chain.
And stimulates the imagination, as well. Ex-Aqualectra manager Martina now is director of Fatum Insurance, one of the banks prepared to lend Aqualectra money. He's also on the list to be minister in Wiels's new cabinet (if and when) for economic development. This carries a powerful stench of a conflict of interests.
Somebody asks "haven't we learned anything by that mess we just passed through?" Looks like "no"; exactly what I figured all the time since seeing the election results.
Rekenkamer accounting has problems with BNA, predecessor of the present Central Bank. They had wheelings and dealings with the government (that was PAR) that were kept out of the budget and thus out of sight of parliament. The Bank, after finally showing the documents, presents another view; hey, I can't judge who's right here. Maybe both. In total it's about 8.4 million guilders—not what you'd call peanuts but I can't get all excited.
Hospital by Gondola
There was a heavy downpour yesterday (here 67mm) and, just like two years ago when all those roads started taking deterioration seriously, the location for the new hospital was flooded. One more reason to wonder if it's smart to go on there; not that we needed any. "You could only get there by boat" people write on the web.
Funny how that location is still called by its familiar name, "the Amstel terrain." Ex-PM Shorty wanted to change it, for some reason; another lost chance of his.
Money Like Water
The banks will have to lend Aqualectra say, 250 to 300 million guilders or we'll all die of thirst and without airco, too. Not to mention the economy. But the banks have wised up and insist on tariffs coupled to energy market prices, with no intervention from politics. They also want two commissioners on the board with veto-right.
Only three years ago Aqualectra had another money injection of 240 million guilders, resulting in a 300 million debt.
No Tax Money Comes In
The economy is going so bad that tax coming in is much less than was expected. Even the higher txes planned will not help. No money, no taxes. No doubt the government will try even harder, instead of really trying to cut down on costs—which will result in the economy slowing down even more. Better prepare for the hard times!
The Public Ministry has declared that they see no reason to take action on cooperators' of VDC complaints about having been intimidated to release information about their network to Colombian and other foreign persons. No legal offenses have been committed. End of story.
What's The Use
How this nation loves preaching and being preached at. Suppose it makes them feel real good, then go home and go on doing whatever. We have glass-containers to dump glass in at several lications, to be collected by that garbage service Selikor; one near where we live, at a gas station. It was full and overflowing, and we warned the attendants about it. They promised to call Selikor and it would be emptied "next Monday". That's three weeks ago now; we just dump our bottles in the trash again.
Harsh Words, Well Deserved
Interim PM Betrian and minister of finance Jardim look askance at the lofty plans announced for Isla refinery. Betrian feels that the commissioners are acting as directors, while their task is to supervise the management, and Jardim will visit them next Monday to deliver a little lecture.
Holland is getting just as worried as we are about our financial position. "Too little has been done in the past few months" to correct it and conform to Cft—ain't it the truth. In contrast with former Dutch minister Spies, there are now voices in Dutch parliament who definitely threaten with the waarborgfunctie [guaranty function] that enables the kingdom to intervene.
Wiels won't like that! But interim PM Betrian announced that the government must economize, starting January 1 (why wait so long?) but no civil servants will be fired (why not?)
And PAR keeps telling everybody that they won't mind partaking in the new cabinet,but it seems formateur Camelia doesn't hear them. Anyway, Wiels wouldn't like that, either.
Hospital Pushed Around
Those infamous new hospital troubles never seem to end! Now the interim government is trying to get Quackie Constancia's plans realized as fast as possible. In the process, essential steps in decision making are skipped; for example, 150 objections were never sent to the proper authority ROP but instead to USONA who has a direct interest in the plans and, regardless, is expected to advise ROP on the objections.
Seems that Telecuraçao charged some political parties more for their election spots than others. And the director is back at work again as if nothing happened. Uh oh.
Isla refinery is surprised to hear about those ambitious plans to modernize the plant for 2-3 billions of dollars worth. Nobody seems to have bothered to tell them about it. Also, they feel it's not done to start talking about a third partner while they are negotiating with PdVSA. In short, it's a frightful mess; or, business as usual...
Or is that "Independence"?
image courtesy EU Referendum
This is an old story, dating from way back when Mirna Godett (His Sister) was our PM because Anthony himself was spending well-deserved time groaning in jail. The setting is the new year's reception of the governor, January 1, 2004:
Before the line of invited people started to move to wish the governor and his spouse a happy new year and get handed a glass of champagne, Mirna Godett dashed onto the stage with her husband and children in her wake. The family positioned themselves next to the governor couple so nobody could pass them by.
Reminds me of when Mirna tried to gate-crash Bill Gates' partner Allen's yacht in Willemstad harbor. But then, she was rebuffed.
Told by Wouter Tielkemeijer in his book Coup Campo Alegre
Where's The Report?
The board of Isla refinery is not happy with Mensche's appointment as director for three months. It interferes with their own plans, entailing a total modernization of the refinery that should be ready before 2018. Catch is, neither Isla RdK nor PdVSA have the money for this ambitious deal, so a third partner must be found. All these plans are based on an Ecorys report of earlier this year, under the former Shorty government who of course never made any of it public but some conclusions (which may not be even in there for all we know: nothing.)
A really big problem for Isla refinery is that in a couple of years all oil products must meet much more stringent (pollution) standards, and there has never been made any effort to comply.
Wake Up, Wake Up, Even If It's Much Too Late
Now those parties who signed an accord behind PAR's back discovered that their base is "much too narrow" and want to involve PAR as yet in the deliberations. We knew it all the time. Are we so much smarter than our elected representatives?
The answer of course, obviously is "Yes". But then, we all earn our own living.
If I were PAR (glad I'm not) I'd hold them at knife-point. Which they seem to do...
That's a Relief!
Inspection of Health has given the green light to Sehos hospital and (surprise) Jellinek. It's okay to go there and be cut up or kicked off, they now say after unexpected visits to both locations. Went well, they say. No word on Taams clinic (yet). (Limited go-ahead for Advent Hospital came in a few days later.)
On the other hand, the comment seems reasonable that Winkels's functions as director both Jellinek and Sehos are "incompatible". Winkel, we're told, agrees; so why did he get into that awkward position?
Hato Airport (actually, dept. of aviation formerly "led" by MAN Cooper) has finally asked and been promised technical and financial assistance from Holland to upgrade back to an US-FAA category 1 status. Planning will start a month from now; no promises yet when we'll be ready for upgrading.
Hato airport's director said that "money was the largest problem" in getting the necessary work done. That has a ring of truth.
Interim minister Adriaens has announced her department is looking at yet another round of raising airport tariffs and taxes. For such a crummy place as it is now, it's way overpriced already.
The Isla refinery staff's trade union has very little confidence in the optimistic dates quoted only last week: the overhaul was expected to be finished by the end of December, but the union very much doubts this and points at the lack of qualified personnel working on it. Originally the overhaul, started on April 12 was supposed to take six weeks, but the last date we heard was November 8 and since then, silence.
Maybe our pollution problems will soon be solved, deus ex machina like, by Venezuela's PdVSA canceling the lease. No such luck, I fear.
Not in the Red
There may even be a 1.2m guilders positive balance this year after all, because the interim-cabinet has cut 90m of planned government spending. Naturally, MFK ex sinister of theft Imalootin started whooping right on cue that he was right all the time, there never was a deficit! Yeah, sure, Imalootin. Please shut up.
More Green Foolishness
Hato Airport, which will have to raise all prices and taxes to at least break even (meanwhile dreaming of spending many millions on some con men's space-port pipe dreams) will now look at wasting even more money by using the sea as heat sink in a harebrained electricity plant scheme. The installation costs USD twelve million per megawatt (almost 22m guilders), all-in USD30m/ANG54m; which is a multiple of fossil-fuel plants. "The question is if this form of energy production is profitable" even if combined with an airco-plant talked about in the past, the planners themselves admit.
The planners talk about cold water at 1km depth, without mentioning that's 7km off-shore. "It would fit well in other alternative energy plans like the wind generators." Sure does!
By the way, we hear precious little about that electric car charger at Hato any more.
Dutch space guy Ockels is en route from Holland to our neighbor Aruba on a "sustainable" ship called Ecolution, to give the Arubans advise on green energy. However, the ship is not really that sustainable. First, he had to stop in England because water had got in the diesel tank. Diesel tank? you ask. Yes, diesel tank, don't ask. The Ship also lost her sails. Now he's stuck in Brest, France because some cable broke.
The BBC informs us "The schooner is designed to generate its own energy, enabling people to remain on board for long periods without having to put in to harbour." So much for that.
If Ockels doesn't watch it, his trip may take longer than the first steamer Curaçao's, which crossed the ocean in 1826, taking just over a month. Ockels, starting out on 2012-11-06, has been underway for ten days already.
Now Wiels & Wilsoen Are Traitors!
According to Ingomar Martina (in Papiamentu) both PS Wiels and Wilsoen were told in advance about the so-called coup d'état farce, and decided not to support PM MFK Shorty and MAN. Too bad if you voted for PS... Sucker!
Hurrah! We Have a New Cabinet! Or...?
After PAR had announced they would not join the PS-PAIS-PNP fray after all, PAR member Sulvaran made it known he would leave the party and join the coalition, which would then have an 11 out of 21 vote majority (there we go again). For some reason Sulvaran never discussed this with PAR, who have real questions about the procedure followed by Wiels and Sulvaran.
Later, it turned out Sulvaran's new partners PS-PAIS-PNP didn't have an inkling that this was a solo performance either. They figured Sulvaran signed for PAR, not for himself only.
Money's All Gone
Quackie Constancia's former department of health will not be able to pay all dues for the rest of the year. With a balance of 11.5 million and costs payable 8.6m, this sounds surprising, but Soab government accounting "fears" that a lot of debts dating from January to September 2012 must still be paid. Many orders were done without a paper trail... summing it up, she made a total mess.
Good to Know
The Public Ministry is still working on the Bientu affair, mainly revolving about lottery boss Robbie dos Santos. It has definitely not been hushed up, but is a highly intricate "mega-affair" which needs careful preparation.
Another instance where PS Wiels's bragging about the "clean hands" of "his" party members has been shown to be just that, empty bragging.
Rekenkamer accounting complains that Central Bank was not too forthcoming an cooperative in their investigations. One of the things found out is that the Bank invoiced the Country for a total of 8.4 million in the years 2007-2009. We would all like to know if it were politicians who were paid that money for "advise to the government". Rekenkamer finds it was outside "the regular budget process" and thus illegal.
Standard & Poor (the very name sounds like a pun) has degraded Curaçao's financial status from "stabile" (A-/A-2) to "negative". Follow the leader: a similar degradation was given to Obama-led USA. I don't want to spell out the obvious reasons; am nauseous already.
PAR Passes Politely
PAR's party council has unanimously declined to take part in a new government with PS, PAIS and PNP. Now we may again get to see Wiels wriggle and writhe: he's only got MFK (whom he says are criminals) and MAN (who refuse to work with PAIS turncoats, but now seem to have changed their mind) left to turn to. Problem seems to be, PAR was all ready and set to sign a letter of intent, when all of a sudden a new paragraph had been slipped in there without they having been consulted.
All this probably is just fine with informateur Camelia as his job may be extended. Then again, the governor might well decide to replace him now.
Later, PAR stated it was a "misunderstanding"... keep tuned.
"Time Is on Our Side"
Is what Isla manager Justiana says, denying all allegations that the Isla refinery is one smoking junk yard. But he would, wouldn't he? By end of the year all operations will be back to normal (whatever that means) and even the full spare capacity will be available. We'll see, but don't hold your breath: rather enjoy the relatively clean air as long as it lasts.
Ex-MAN Deputy Demei Died
Bennie Demei has died. I wouldn't mention it, but I resent seeing Demei described as a "very popular and beloved politician, hard worker with a clear vision for the island's future". He was involved in the Campo Alegre Coup that brought Godett to power eight years ago, and was involved in gambling operations skullduggery.
Please spare us more of these visions for the future.
Interim PM Betrian and interim finance minister Jardim warn that the country's liquidity problem is worrisome, deplorable and disastrous. Measures should be taken right away or we're all doomed; but if that's done all at once it will result in social problems (not that we need any) and even more unemployment. They don't want the finger at anyone, they just state the facts. Neither do they have to—by now we all know who caused this. We do not point fingers either, we flip 'em to every single parliament member.
Liquidity went down from 408 million in January to 173 this week, and is expected to be 153 million by end 2012.
Yearly government accounts over 2008 and 2009, with PAR essentially in power, have been rejected by Rekenkamer accounting.
Name Change Yes, Maintenance Not
After all the excitement about the name change of Peter Stuijvesant College to KAP, forced down almost everybody's throat by patriotic full-time makamba-hater PS Rosalia, Stuijvesant's statue has been discreetly removed; but, just like at other public schools, maintenance there has been totally neglected. Holes in ceilings, water leaks—we know the score by now. To repeat, that was Wiels's Pueblo Soberano, the party that promised "free" education. And won the elections.
Formateur Glenn Camelia warns that it will take longer (than Friday) to arrive at a cabinet, as the parties have to aim at building a basis of trust and reaching a reconciliation process. Hey, don't blame me for that sentence, I'm quoting Camelia. This does sound hard to accomplish for those professional quarrelers; and several parties have asked for more reflection time.
Gee, I wonder how much they pay that formateur. Per hour/day.
Robber Party Enjoys Free Education
Oil workers' union head Angelo Meyer accuses RDK refinery board members Oswald van der Dijs and Bicho Justiana of stealing public funds. He says that's their reason to remain on the board while the situation is deteriorating.
Turns out, of 17,244,341 guilders "loaned" from RDK to finance "free" education only 16,425,937 were paid back when Cft financial supervision declared the loan illegal. SOAB public accounting says 818,404 disappeared without a trace, leaving not a wreck behind.
So we have paid dearly for that "free" education already, and it's not even there yet. Nota bene: a project of PS minister Monky, with Wiels always bragging his party is so clean.
Good Luck With That
PAIS Rosaria wants all private sectors involved in the discussions on the LGO status of Curaçao in the €C. He doesn't want it to become a cosy clique of civil servants. Grow up Rosaria, that's exactly what the €C is! As long as it lasts.
No Money, No Houses, No Answer, NoThing
Fundashon Kas Popular public housing announces that since 2009, they have written 9 letters to deputies and ministers complaining about not receiving rent subsidies. They never got a reply. FKP figures they can't achieve much that way.
The guys involved were FOØL Godett, now finally gone, and MFK Imalootin (hopefully gone as well).
Since interim-PM Betrian appointed Mensche as refinery director, the board of commissioners have changed the locks on their facilities. Betrian thinks they've got something to hide. Whatever makes him think that?
But Now, I Guess, It Is Too Late
All of a sudden, MAN tells us that they are prepared to join any party in a new coalition. Even PAIS with "turncoat" Cleopa. MAN says it's because "conditions have changed." I dare say.
tbs">#overhaul">since April 12 Count Your Profits
Isla refinery has been showing a loss since 2007. The refinery blames problems with power plant BOO, but their own cat-cracker has not been operating since April 12, which results in 500k-700k guilders (USD275k-385k) lost income per day; a total of say 65m guilders/35m dollars. Up to today.
Claims are that leaser PdVSA makes a profit of $500m/year on "our" refinery (paying 16m rent).
The PdVSA lease, as we all know by heart, expires in 2019. That's two years after 2017, when the USA is expected to be a top oil-producing country, surpassing Saudi Arabia. It would be surprising indeed if PdVSA renewed the lease by then.
By the way you know, Isla refinery now is the owner of BOO; at least their subdivision Curaçao Refinery Utilities CRU is.
That's Politics, Folks!
After finally being invited, PAR has now started talks with informateur Camelia on participating in a cabinet with PS, PAIS and PNP, with a total of 14 seats out of 21. Camelia has two more days for his formation advise.
So Wiels finally ate his crow, leaving MFK and MAN exactly nowhere.
Road to Nowhere
This afternoon PS, PAR, Pais and PNP will have a cosy get-together with informateur Camelia. I hope they'll be rigorously checked checked for hidden weapons or blood might very well flow. Keep tuned, but mark that MFK and MAN are out of this game so it can't be of much use: a minority of 5+4+4+1=10 out of 21 seats.
Notwithstanding one of the many promises by PS-Wiels and ex minister Monky, this one of free education for the masses, you can't wondering where the money'd come from. Notwithstanding the Isla refinery's promised loan of 17m to finance it: and pray, where would they get the money?
Even now, the public schools are a mess already. There's no money for anything: no teaching materials, no security; toilet paper, copy paper (no sarcastic comments, please!) toner, pens and copybooks have become "luxury items". Maintenance is a disaster with ceilings falling down and leaking, dangerous electricity, broken computers and no internet. The pupils can't even enjoy porn at school? A disgrace!
Almost, but not really funny is the cause of these problems: there's no money coming in from the parents any more, because of that free education.
Weirdly(?) the catholic schools don't seem to have these problems.
A related problem is that the final exams do not follow new Dutch standards so nobody can go study there any more. Probably exactly what many politicians want: "keep that voting cattle ASAP" (As Stupid As Possible).
Moratorium Is Killing Hospitals
Three years ago all hospitals were more or less put on hold as regards maintenance and extensions, awaiting the definite planning of a hew and hopefully improved hospital. Since then, we've had two years of Quackie Constancia making obscure deals with notoriously fraudulent Dutch contractor Ballast-Nedam and not getting anywhere. Also since then, and it's no coïncidence, all three hospitals have run into serious trouble with their operating rooms; but they can't do a thing about it because of this moratorium.
One More Week
Informateur Camelia has had three deferments of his deadline already; last one ended yesterday but it was extended to next Friday. Camelia tells everybody he's confident that he'll succeed. By now, he's just about the only one who's so convinced.
The only cabinet that seems viable now would consist of MFK, PAIS and PAR who together hold a 13 seats majority. It's only because formateur Camelia rather holds with PS than with PAR that he still pursues Wiels's crazy caprices. Following that course, he just changed his informateur instructions without bothering to consult the governor.
If PAR would not accept criminals like Shorty as they now say is an open question. Remember, they tolerated convicted criminal FOL Godett all the time. Of course, the screening law is much more stringent now.
Now Wiels Gets It
PS Wiels, now that it becomes clear to the meanest intelligence that he has blown all chances to get his party into the government, suddenly states that he wants a "task cabinet", which sounds exactly like the "business cabinet" that he declined earlier this year. And it would exist for a period of six months to one year. Only. What's the use!
The cabinet would exist of PS, PAIS, PNP and... PAR! That is, the present interim cabinet with four ministers added. Rumors are all posts have been divided up already. Don't even know if it's constitutional; a cabinet is supposed to stay on for four years (unless they're fired by parliament). But naturally, Wiels doesn't want to be stuck with arch-enemy PAR for that long.
For the sake of more opaqueness: PAR denies any involvement, and Wiels calls it an "assignment cabinet". And interim PM Betrian announced long since that he wanted out of the job ASAP.
Tough for Tourist Bureau
Another setback for CTB tourist office: the court has thrown out a claim that all hotels must pay a room tax, even if they have not received it from their customers. As international hotel chains do not get taxed, the local hotels can't be taxed either, is how the judge figures.
Don't worry, it has been shown already that giving CTB less money will bring more tourists.
Without claiming to know a thing about it, I just want to give these some attention. Oostpunt, the large eastern part of the island, has been left untouched for generations now thanks to the owners, the Maal family. Within the last few years, our greedy government decided it would be a good idea to raise some extra money by applying the thumbscrews further in the form of property tax. This left the Maal family no alternative but to develop their property, if they wished to or not.
Problem is, the terrain had been designated a conservation area in the EOP development plan. In my opinion, at that point the government should have started paying the Maals to conserve the area. Dream on.
Anyway, the upshot of course is that now Amigu di Tera [friends of the earth], Defensa Ambiental and other organizations are worried that developing the area may ruin coral reefs etc. I have no idea if that's true or not; some worries no doubt are legit: when you develop you damage nature. They are also protesting against the way those public hearings are being held. It's more than a good guess Maal has problems there as well.
They Just Don't Seem to Get It
The whole idea of electing politicians in a government is that they are supposed to come to mutual understandings and solve contradictory positions. You may hate 'em for being like that, it's what they're supposed to do. But these guys keep quarreling worse than we do! What's the use?
Wiels Prattles Poppycock
Some ten days ago (I do inconveniently remember what politicians babble) Wiels was predicting that during the past week several politicians would be arrested. Alas, too bad, dear us, he was wrong again. No doubt some richly deserve it, but they were all left in freedom. Wiels—the same guy who keeps bragging he fulfills all his promises.
Finally discovered Wiels meant MFK Shorty and MAN Cooper; one can see his point.
New Cabinet? Huh!
With a Staten parliament of 20 seats, a just-so majority as we're used to having holds 11 seats. MFK doesn't want to have anything to do with PS. MAN doesn't want to work with PAIS. PS doesn't want PAR. Now let's look at coalition possibilities.
PS + PAIS have 9 seats; with PNP 10: OUT
MFK + PAR have 9 seats; with MAN 11; with PNP 10; with MAN + PNP 12.
We can only conclude that PS Wiels, the big winner, has cleverly maneuvered himself in the off-side position. Either we make do without him, or we'll have new elections shortly.
As MAN's Coffie wrote, the great advantage here is that we won't have Aarsjes as parliament president or, horrors, PM.
Wiels Opens Big Mouth
The Dutch have a saying "empty barrels sound loudest" and Wiels is giving us more proof of that. He tells us that they are renegotiating with PdVSA on the refinery lease, where PdVSA will get the rights to use the refinery for 25 more years following 2019, after investing $1.5g. Scared the crap out of Smoc!
my, it's even worse than ours!
image courtesy La Economía Venezolana
PdVSA just don't have that sort of money at their disposal. Without Chávez, they might; but with that guy giving away so much oil all over the world (except to "friends" like Wiels) and spending the rest on weapons and nationalizing factories that next go bankrupt, the Venezuelan economy, PdVSA included, is a shambles. Not that it was any better before Chávez, but then, at least, PdVSA was doing relatively well.
Yuppie off-kick clinic Jellinek has been working illegally since its start in 2010. Psychiatrists and psychologists working there do not have the proper diplomas. There are presently no patients, but as soon as these arrive the clinic will probably be closed.
Interim PM Betrian announces that CVD security has been up and running "for some time" with director Römer, who replaced Gumbs in May after he was fired by ex-PM Shorty. But Römer still has no tenure.
Let's Get Real
Economy growth of Curaçao this year is expected to be 0.00?. Not so good, but what do you expect? Only tourism brings in some money (and the refinery, you say? Hahaha!) Unemployment is at ~10% (for youth ~25%). Problem is schooling level is much too low, so for many jobs personnel must be imported. So much for 80-20 pipe dreams.
But take heart, stay positive! Next year, a growth of -0.3 to +0.7% is expected (is what I'd call "as good as nothing"). And prices will go up and purchasing power down, what with higher energy prices and large government deficits.
Could Take Forever!
A lawyer is protesting against extended detention of her client. Problem is, the court is waiting for a report of Dutch forensic institute NFI, which can take nine months. And even longer, as the country has a 1 million guilders debt there.
Diver's Drama Develops
The decompression tank in Sehos hospital has been sitting there, empty and unused, for months and months. Now, finally, they have a guy who actually can operate it! Matter of fact, we had him all the time but he left in disgust (in February!) because "he wasn't born here and couldn't get the needed permits". Besides, he's a honkie, a cracker, whaddawe talkin' about?
He's not back yet: still waiting for his permits. Meanwhile, that tank just sits there and we pay interest and rent. That doctor "has no idea" how long it will take. Tough if you get the bends.
The US FAA degraded Curaçao to category 2. After we were first promised that we would be re-certified in December 2011 (with a little help from Holland), this was postponed to mid 2012, with MAN Cooper stating FAA was "impressed" by his department's actions. Once again, it turns out he's a big liar: Curaçao will not be upgraded before March 2013. If then.
Curaçao civil aviation was working with an experienced U.S. consultant from the U.S., whose short term contract was not renewed when he reported on the situation after his assessment. He had constant interference from the sector director who is in a constant quarrel with "the few demoralized, undertrained, underpaid and very little experienced civil aviation inspectors" of which there are too few for their tasks (overseeing CUR airport with two major airlines and many smaller ones, plus SXM airport with one airline.) This potentially results in safety problems.
Maybe even worse: management changed a few months ago and now there's no experienced superior to give the inspectors guidance.
(Reported with far too few details by Curaçao Chronicle).
Meanwhile, MAN Cooper is doing all he can to glue the coalition shards together, so he can get his cosy former position back.
There's Some Hurry
As long as we don't have a working coalition, the interim cabinet keeps in power, for all practical purposes. Better hurry up, kids: now the working cabinet has appointed Mensche Isla refinery director for three months (probably no longer because Mensche has already retired). But as the board of commissioners did not answer to the PM's letter, there's some delay here. A well-known tactic; the refinery also uses it in court.
Yeah, Well (Yawn)
MFK Shorty's protest against the Cft toewijzing has definitely been rejected.
That Goes for All News
Hint: Dutch kut means c*nt in English,
but used like this, it's more like "shit".
The governor has given formateur Camelia one more week to have a new cabinet ready. He's got his work cut out for him. Now, PS, PAIS and PNP have signed they are willing; that's only 10 seats out of 21, though. MAN is still trying to get MFK back in the gang.
The judge has pronounced, in a case by DAE airline against government (actually the former government, and explicitly MAN Cooper) that the government has to publish a rectification. Cooper had stated that DAE had illegally lowered their prices, while there is no legal minimum price; and also that this made him doubt DAE's technical maintenance and personnel training.
It is fair to say that Cooper has always been favoring DAE competitor Inselair. It is also fair to say to Inselair is a sort of follow-up to former national
So Sue Them
Stichting Monumentenzorg [Foundation monument care] will sue Isla refinery to pay the costs for finding out the extent of oil pollution damage in the saliña of Jan Kock/St. Marie. Isla should also be forced to take measures to avoid such future pollution.
It's pretty safe to assume that, later on, Isla will be further sued for paying all damage caused.
Now They Notice
The union of mini-bus drivers protests against the sudden price raise of diesel-fuel. "This should have been done in buts and parts before the elections, but for political reasons the former MFK, PS and MAN government postponed it until after the elections."
As we're discussing the fuel price anyway, how about those 5 cents for Shorty? Are we still paying those? Will somebody please tell us?
The political parties are quarreling all over; MFK has left the possible coalition with PS and MAN, and MAN does not want a coalition with PAIS to which "turncoat" Cleopa now belongs.
Problem here is, a new cabinet should have been installed last Friday, November 2, or the kingdom is empowered to step in and take over. Not that it's expected to.
Isla refinery is in awful trouble; again start-up failed and with enormous losses at stake the trade union claims it's "five to twelve" before the end now. The refinery blames BOO, and BOO blames the refinery for everything that's wrong. For all we know, they may both be right.
However, when the trade union claims that Venezuelan PdVSA is owner of Isla it's wrong; Isla owned by Curaçao government. True enough, Isla can only do what PdVSA directs.
Keep On Bragging
PS Wiels never tires of repeating this all "his" cohorts have clean hands, this time while announcing next week several politicians will be arrested. But he always conveniently forgets Rosalia who had to leave his minister of culture job in disgrace.
And we all remember "his" minister Wilsoen as well, who walked so close to the precipice, it's a wonder he didn't fall in. Only needed a little push.
"His" is how he talks about them—are they his property? Like serfs or slaves?
Five MinutesSixty Million More
Now Curoil, no doubt also because of those new tanks, has to borrow 60 million guilders. To settle a debt with PdVSA. However, Curoil is really in debt for ANG179 million (say USD 100m). Do we have to add this to the 500m country deficit, and then the 150m Aqualectra utility is trying to borrow? Then we're really in the red for 830m.
Turns out, as fall-out of my latest Public Ministry letter, that it was mafioso Francesco Carello who'd been offered the job of Central Bank director, legally held by Ensley Tromp. No wonder ex-PM Shorty hated Tromp's guts! Not to mention that other obscure guy, Baetsen who'd been offered the job of bank vice-president (he got nowhere). I can imagine Carello calling Shorty: "Promessa! Promessa! That'sa all we getta from you for our denaro costoso. Let'sa pronto see some results, oppure!" and Shorty "yah boss... sure... anything you say padrino..."
(Not really) sorry about the Schadenfreude.
Pay Up, You Cattle
Twenty million guilders, that's how much three new oil tanks in the harbor cost. Ex-PM Shorty extensively bragged about 'em in his election campaign. Now it turns out that, regardless of accountants Ernst & Young's advice that this was fine (I really wonder what they pay those guys for), there's no money. Surprised? Go read the comic papers... It's much more fun.
Another non-surprise is that prices for electricity, water, gasoline and diesel will be raised "substantially." In the same order ANG 0.7319/kW becomes 0.7585; 10.4499/m3 - 10.5859; 2.326/liter - 2.50; 1.581 - 2.04.
No real need for Arthur Donker to point out that the 500 million guilders MFK-PS-MAN managed to blow in two years is what Holland handed out at the start of that "governance"?
Now MAN Wants OUT
First PS, MFK and MAN sign an intent to for a coalition; a couple of days later MFK drops out and now MAN pulls the same act. PS Aarsjes acts like it's High Treason, as if he didn't know (may be so) that it's quite habitual for our politicians to forget about signatures to a document. Mere marks on paper. Check here and here... do you need more?
Funniest part is, Aarsjes claims that if Shorty wants to become PM and he's out because of his alleged criminal acts, POOOF! go Aarsjes's chances to park his lard on the PM's seat, as then PAR leader de Jongh-Elhage would be next in line with most election votes.
Oh, and by the way you know, today the new parliament will be installed.
It's because of "turncoat" Cleopa going to PAIS that MAN doesn't want anything to do with 'em.
Dutch PVV party wants our governor to press charges against PS Wiels for incitement to hatred, defamation and sedition; he has made some weird and unacceptable statements (maybe when he had omitted to take his medicine.) However, now Wiels again confesses he is an accessory to crimes committed by former ministers, i.c. Imalootin. Says Wiels, "If you are a suspect, how can you have the ambition to become a candidate for a political party?" without having an inkling that the same goes for him, an accomplice by shutting up. Which makes him a criminal as well. Let's sue the bastard some more!
Followed up on my first complaint to the Public Ministry, adding some documents from CuraLeaks (long since gone) showing ex-PM Shorty's relations with mafioso Carello; this time gave 'em two weeks time to follow up before I ask the Court of Justice to sue the Public Ministry.
A joke is a joke: the PM didn't want to pursue "political cases" awaiting the elections and while I didn't wholeheartedly agree with the idea, I could at least follow that. But hey, the elections are two weeks ago already—so move those boots, OM!
A Real Howler
It's only FatHead Dictator Aarsjes who says it, but that doesn't make it less amusing: if ex-PM Shorty drops out of the cabinet, next-in-line is losing-party PAR's chief Emily de Jongh-Elhage! as she is the third follow-up in amounts of voters. "That's inconceivable" Aarsjes adds. Well, so is he as PM.
Wouldn't Mind Myself
PS wants the ministry of
theftfinance for themselves. So would I; all square up to now. But then credit-card Aarsjes goes on to state it's the only chance they "have to get rid of the 500 million debt." But we were told those were all lies and there was no such debt?
Anyway, I'd rather go the casino and gamble with professional gangsters to try and make it back than trust PS.
Whatever MAN Cooper says, our poor government has so little money that in some ministries civil servants have to take their own toilet paper to the job. Their trade union complains that there's also no sugar and tea and "other household articles". Now they tell us it's not for the first time.
No cracks please, they don't have to retire to the toilet to read their newspapers; quite legit to do so behind their desks.
No News: Confirmation
Ex-minister of theft Imalootin is a suspect in the Bientu affair.
PS leader Cijntje calls MFK retracting from a new coalition "a preliminary sign that said party is not willing to form a coalition with PS". Guess he got the message; but keep fooling yourself, Cijntje... then maybe you'll have less time to fool us.
How Like Him
There are rumors that a new coalition will not include Wiels's PS. We'll see about that today, maybe. Point is, Wiels is already threatening that then there will be riots: "chaos and uproar". But he states in the same breath that he's very relaxed about it.
Another theoretical possibility would be PAR-PAIS-MAN-PNP, total 11 of 21 seats. That Cooper has loudly declared never to work with PAR would on second thoughts be no problem, MAN. With party seats distributed like that, it's like turning a kaleidoscope.
Here's a link (sorry, it's gone!) to Wiels's letter to SP (in Dutch). If you have the patience to figure out that impenetrably tortuous prose, be my guest. It's full of paranoia and lies anyway, like that in 2005 the people have chosen for independence. I don't remember such a thing: the vote was overwhelmingly for status aparte as a member of the mighty Kingdom of the Netherlands.
The Isla refinery cat-cracker, after many delays expected to come on-line two or three weeks ago, still won't make it before November 7 or 8. If they succeed, it has taken 7 months instead of the expected 6 weeks.
Insiders tell me that every time some part of the installation has been renovated, another one breaks down. Yeah. What the thesaurus calls rickety, decrepit, derelict, dilapidated, rachitic, ramshackle, rattletrap, rocky, shaky, tottering, tottery, tumble-down, wavering. And then some. Maybe "scrap" expresses it best.
Huh? He Must Be Desperate
Now PS Wiels is contacting Dutch Socialist Party to help speed up independence. (The Dutch socialists have the same 1960s political philosophy that 'colonialism' is Pure Evil.) Maybe it's because fanatical independence seekers here, with good reason, feel "betrayed" by Wiels suddenly declaring the process may take ten years. Overnight, he has reduced this to five. We still have to see if he's around by then.
In That Case...
... please fix the roads, now! MAN Cooper denies there's any shortage in the government coffers, let alone 500 million—there's plenty of money, plenty. The choice is ours: either he doesn't know what he's talking about, or he's lying through his back teeth. Quite possibly both. I discount the possibility that he's right; hey!
Let's Have It
The audit of the Central Bank Curaçao and St. Maarten has avoided the bank being placed under guardianship, as happened with the government. One of the reasons why this was evaded is that Shorty has gone and taken his anti bank director strife with him. For now.
Deep Black Mud
Politicians are supposed to resolve conflicts. Ours at work: MFK Shorty announced his party will not participate in a new cabinet with PS Wiels and MAN. Main reason is Wiels accepts the screening law whichs make Shorty unfit for a ministerial post. Most probably, MFK, MAN and PAIS will now form a coalition and MFK, PAR and PNP will form the opposition; with MFK thwarting everybody else.
Curaçao wants trankilidat [peace and quiet] stated Shorty. He's the one to talk.
He and Wiels call each other "sociopaths". They both have a very good point. Shorty is a pathological liar and rumors are persistent that Wiels is an outpatient at the
loony binCapriles Clinic (paranoia and bipolar disorder) but refuses to take his medicines. Shorty claims PS Wilsoen has caused what he keeps calling a "coup" and "always falls asleep in cabinet meetings". (Wilsoen must be smarter than I gave him credit for.)
This does not necessarily mean Shorty will no longer be prosecuted for his misdeeds. Wait and see. It does prove once again that Shorty's signature has no value.
Curaçao Tourist Board complains that the government doesn't pay them as promised, for which sheik of stagnation el Hakim is blamed. CTB also brags that tourism went up with 8.5% (compared with what is not clear) for which el Hakim claims that he's responsible. Now, let's apply logic:—
tourism went up when CTB got less
so the less we pay CTB, the more tourism grows
Say, here's an idea! Why not get rid of 'em altogether!
Central Bank Investigation
The Central Bank of Curaçao/St. Maarten, a real bone of contention, will now be investigated by an organization appointed by the kingdom. Let's hope this will end the ugly struggle between the former government and director Tromp once and for all.
Musical Chairs, False Tunes
The newly proposed ministers have been announced. Same old scoundrels, except minister of theft Imalootin seemed too heavy to digest; replaced by Terry Hernandez. MFK Shorty and PS Arsjes change positions, Arsjes is PM (surely his cherished dream) and Shorty takes Arsjes's former position as head of staten [parliament]. We'll see if that stands the screening.
Plenipotentiary minister in Holland has been replaced by Caryl Monte, who's safer than Osepa in that he'll toe the line No Matter What.
Say, wouldn't Arsjes matter of fact prefer to be governor? Then he could really lay it down.
Funny enough, turns out the 'controversial' screening law originated with Shorty himself. So much for MAN Cooper now protesting the law is useless.
Gas No, Oil Si?
Now some guy at Aqualectra utility claims that gas generators may be much more efficient than oil, but it's still a bad idea for us because "there's no gas in Curaçao". As if there were oil.
Back With That!
In an interview with Reuters writer Brian Ellsworth PS Wiels states that Shell oil has caused the island permanent (unspecified) damages of 40 to 50 billion dollars and that there are plans to sue in Holland to get this back. By a coïncidence (?) just about what many want Holland to pay in compensation for the slavery business to presently living descendants; lawyers keep telling me it can't be done—at least not by process of law.
To the contrary, a very good case can be made that the descendants of Africans living in the Americas generally are much better off than their counterparts who staid in "free" Africa; rather outrageously, they'd have to thank slavery for that.
Worse, this has been tried before and got nowhere. Shell put a condition when they left and the government signed; that's all there is to it. Shell even offered to clean up the infamous asphalt lake, but our politicians preferred to have Shell pay 400 million, which then disappeared without a trace while the lake's still there. Politicians know about this and have been blackmailing each other with the knowledge. Forget it, Wiels.
All the Gang Will Be There
PS, MFK and MAN have signed a declaration of intent to cooperate in the next government. So Wiels is ready to form a new gang with people he has declared he can have arrested at once, if he wants to: ergo, criminals.
And it's official now: budget deficit is over 500 million guilders, five times more than even Jardim figured. This does not include government-owned companies; Aqualectra utility alone is in the red for at least 50 million.
That Was Obvious
Holland will not pay for any of Curaçao's deficits. To the contrary, they want more financial supervision. Can't blame 'em. The Dutch figure that is was not ignorance of Schotte's Mob, but unwillingness, and I guess they have a point. But my guess is, both.
Even though MAN Cooper was advised that car taxes had to go up, the wise guy seemingly decided not to come up with this interesting fact until now, when enough cattle voted for him. 25%-35% up, pretty hefty. Besides, is it really necessary?
The roads are a mess, but that may largely be because money is sunk into more and still more roundabouts instead of
sinkholesregular maintenance. PS Cijntje remarks that government should be held responsible for accidents caused by deteriorated roads. Hear, hear.
Two years ago, Cooper refused to add 35 guilders to the car tax, less than 10%. But four years before then, he came up with the same proposal!
Hot Air Rockets
The Vomit Comet gang is highly optimistic, they say: "We've passed the dead point" and fully expect to start blasting passengers into space from degraded Hato airport in 2014. The fact that there is no Curaçao law enabling this doesn't bother them, neither does the fact the the USA have not licensed the rocket to be used for export. Even better question, with the financial mess the country's in, who will pay for all their expensive plans?
Same Old Act
After Shorty had first stated he did not want to talk with the governor, a necessary condition for getting his MFK-party in the cabinet, somebody must have made him seen reason because he turned up anyway. Late.
Dutch Want Wiels Sued
Dutch PVV party wants the governor to lodge a complaint against PS Wiels because of encouraging hate, insults and incitement to riots; mainly because of Wiels's infamous statement that makambas [honkies] should be sent back to Holland in body bags. They don't want a racist PM with a death-wish for the Dutch in the kingdom.
As MFK kept insisting, the votes were recounted. Turns out MFK has 9 more votes than originally, PAR about 40. Don't make no difference, mon. Lot of money wasted; but then, we're used to that with MFK around.
Wiels accepts the new screening law, MFK does not. Interesting: Wiels's PS won elections, after all, and wants to continue the former coalition PS-MFK-MAN. New cabinet should be installed by November 2 and they have their work cut out for them.
Problem for MFK here is, the law seems perfectly legal and if they don't want to accept it and still partake in the government, that means enormous new problems.
Turnaround Turns Expensive
BOO electricity plant, which has given us nothing but headaches, is in the process of being upgraded. You will not be surprised to hear that this will cost 78 million dollars instead of the originally quoted 44. Just like the Isla refinery overhaul which, lastly, was supposed to be finished two weeks ago.
This BOO plant is only twelve years old. My, it's even worse than those wind generators!
Isla Stops Accountants Investigation
Isla Refinery has announced they will not cooperate with Soab government accounting on an audit of their business. They give all sort of reasons, which may be legit for all I know—or not.
What to Think?
50-60 people were waiting in front of the (ex-PM Shorty's) MFK office. Most did not want to say what for; some said they had to be paid for work they had done during the campaign. Only one told Curaçao Chronicle she was there to receive 150 guilders for her vote.
Can't Blame the Dutch for That
US FAA lets it be known that upgrading of our aviation to the top category will not take place, at any rate not this year. (That's one of MAN Cooper's responsibilities.)
Now He's Telling 'Em
Now, PS Wiels says it will take ten years before we're ready for independence. First smart thing I ever heard him say, but many faithful followers will be awfully disappointed. If he'd told them that last week, he'd have lost.
Who was it again who said "Four years is a long time in politics"? Look at where Wiels was two years ago. Just about nowhere.
MFK has complained that there were discrepancies in the vote, which made a recount necessary. So we're waiting for that, but I don't expect any real changes.
Candidates for PS and MFK were not listed on some ballot forms: sounds highly improbable; that some forms partly lacked color is at least possible. MFK does not mention any numbers. Finally, a number of people were refused admittance when counting was started; yeah, figures—and emphatic warnings were given in advance.
Can't Resist It
A week or so ago I had written a short sarcastic comment on the Meteo service who had predicted a bad month, qua rainfall, for September, but I decided to delete it. Now, I'm sorry, as we have had much more than average already with ten more days to come. The Meteo service blamed this on el Niño, or la Niña, whatever.
I can understand very well that a service like that wants to base its predictions on certain concepts. My point is, will they never wise up? There's too much randomness in weather to predict it for longer than three days. Next point is, of course,
global warminguh... climate changeuh... climate disruptionuh... whatever it's called now; a big hype that tries to force us all to pay much more for "clean, green" energy. The real chutzpah is to claim they can predict the climate, which after all is long-term weather, for a century. I rest my case.
Wriggling Out Like the Snake He Is
As yet unconfirmed: Shortie announced that his susten
cardsbribe will not be honored because Wiels's PS, not his MFK, won.
Wiels claims that last week-end many people visited MFK's headquarters to get payment for their vote.
Here's the Catch
Wiels wants to wait with a referendum for complete independence
Until he's had a chance to show the people how great he really is
For which he'd need pots of money which he doesn't have, and can't borrow
(for one thing, he has to balance the budget)
Until there's been a new referendum and we're truly independent.
However much Dutch parliament may want to give us independence now - can't be done.
So I guess this Show Must Go On, after all.
Not So Nutty
PS Wiels is delighted with his party winning the election, and says "my people deserves independence". Well, which people doesn't, even if it's "his"? But he will wait with a new (groan) referendum until he has shown 'em how good he is. Smart, Wiels; but it just might backfire.
This may get interesting yet, so I don't know if this Circus will close after we have a new cabinet. In the first place, I notice a strong hangover effect: "What have we done?"
Fast Forward to the Past
They ask me: what happens now? Here's my take.
First, we wait until all 12 seats as chosen get their own ministry, without screening (more of the same scum). Aarsjes will park his fat silk-encased ass back on the parliament president's seat.
Aqualectra Utility goes as good as broke and falls apart
(So take good care to have a 1 week stock of water and 1 month of food; my Chinese solar panels arrive this week)
Central Bank director Tromp goes on the rubbish heap
Then the inevitable devaluation and inflation follows, and Shorty's susten cards will enable you to buy a bread per month—if you're lucky
We'll get a new hospital where quackie Constancia had cozily arranged it with the builder, and all quacks get social health insurance money
The refinery will be sold to the highest bribe-offerer and goes on polluting to its heart's content
This web-Circus will probably close down after the new cabinet has been installed, being of no more use
(Not only) the Dutch will leave in drones, taking their money along, before they get taken out in rubber body bags as promised by Wiels's cohort Monky. This will get much worse once the brown-shirts start hunting for honkies; it's easy, they don't need a white star with the word "makamba".
No predictions on how
shortlong it will take before the country has Shari'a law.
now at the printer
we'll let you know when and where available
Guess that will take a while now!
More of the Same
Preliminary election results: Pueblo Soberano 5 seats in parliament, MFK 5, PAR 4, PAIS 4, MAN 2, PNP 1. FOL øut.
Now, right after the bad news about Chávez, we all look forward eagerly to the Coming Soon USA elections.
There we go already: The majority in parliament will decide if new ministers will be screened, says MFK member el Hakim.
FOL Godett has decided "enough is sufficient" and is getting out of the political game.
Right before the election, must be pure chance, we get to hear that there are three, count 'em, 3 companies interested in taking over Isla refinery in 2019 when the agreement with PdVSA ends. But we're told the name of only one of them, Linkoil, supposed to invest 3 billion dollars in buying and upgrade it "to European standards". We have some questions: first, Linkoil is in the oil trading business, not refining; which of course can change. Second question: have a look at those tankers Linkoil shows on their site (since disappeared). What rust-buckets! Do we really need them to upgrade our refinery?
Sure, We Knew It Was a Mess
Soab government accounting has also checked Public Works Dept, run by MAN Cooper. They have been really busy in that little time they have been given. Anyway, it's a total mess. Projects are started just like that without decent accounting... No need to go on. We have been doing that before.
What does hurt is the awful state of our roads since 2010, when Cooper became minister. The story was there's not enough money to fix 'em. But Soab says that end 2011 liquidity was 161% and solvability 38% which is "very acceptable".
Director Lew Jen Tai of Telecuraçao television has been relieved of his job until end of this month, after difficulties with a live political party discussion. He may be fired. An email supposed to be sent by a station member de Geus and leaking information on the questions to PAR, PAIS and PNP parties, turns out to have been faked with Lew Jen Tai's help.
Mafioso Corallo may deny this, but it looks pretty real to us: he paid a lot for MFK Shorty's 2010 campaign. As he is not from here, that's downright illegal. One more item to get ex-PM Shorty convicted for. His lawyers will have their hands full.
Wiels's SP claim they have copies of onerous letters between MFK and Corallo. If so, their not releasing them may amount to obstruction of justice, something Wiels is proudly capable of.
Investigate Them All
Now demissionary interim PM Betrian wants to extend the screening law with another law granting special investigative powers to the Public Ministry, which would result in more possibilities to investigate candidates for government functions. Betrian hopes this can be in place before the elections; which is doubtful, though.
Rozier has declared on radio, and supported it with an email copy, that last May he was ready to leave Shorty's MFK because he was sick and tired, not to mention disgusted, of defending sinister of theft Imalootin's caprices. He also claims that people like Thodé, Pisas and Koeyers-Felida who was fed up with Wiels's PS, were prepared to leave with him. Thodé is one of the loudest mouths defending Aarsjes acts as parliament head; Pisas claims that he has lodged a complaint with the Public Ministry a long time ago, but somehow can't come across with direct proof he did. They are now still fully behind Shorty.
Rozier has also started proceeding against the same three MFK-members, who accuse him of bribery.
Aqualectra and Isla Don't Like It
They both protest against a report by Soab [government accounting] that their finances are a mess. Somehow, just a vague inkling, I trust Soab more: not only their finances, their whole business is a big mess. As far as I can judge from what appears in the media, both companies are lying as if we can't read 'n' remember. "All problems were caused before the last 24 months" (read: before ex-PM Shorty); this while Aqualectra has always been saying that it was Shorty's populist price reduction that nearly killed them. Time in which the investigation took place was much too short (might be because they were actually raided.) And so on and so forth.
They act so convinced of their right, they are complaining with the (Dutch) Nivra accountants' union.
Afore I forget, Central Bank will also be audited. But nobody seems to be worried there.
Better to Know, Right Now
PAIS Rosaria has left PNP Nashonal because they didn't want to make haste with total independence. Is a rumor that reached me some days ago. Now, it has been confirmed by a letter to Amigoe where a PNP member complained this guy Rosaria was the fiercest proponent of independence, and even addressed director and personnel of a newly opened Dutch business in Papiamentu. They must really have felt welcome. Small wonder that in Holland people get mixed up between Rosaria and Rosalia.
But give Rosaria credit for one thing: he's a cunning politician, to our modest standards, and knows when to clam up and when to open the trap where the frogs jump out.
Voting by Hand
Tomorrow are the elections. Hope the streets will not be as red as the ballot circles next. Official results won't be in before 24th, next Wednesday. That's maybe because we will vote by hand, again. First we had these voting machines; seem to remember it was under FOØL Godett these were acquired. Then, next elections, we voted by machine and on paper; now it's back to paper again.
And those expensive machines? you ask. Landfill is a good guess. Does it matter? Somebody made his pile on those long since.
Man Bites Dog!
Now ex-PM Shorty lodged a complaint. Fancy that. For extortion, against the daughter of the woman he killed in a 2005 car accident who keeps bothering him with letters asking for compensation as her life was ruined by this. Methinks that's not "extortion" but I'm no lawyer. Interestingly, the Public Ministry now denies Shorty was guilty and claims prosecution was not called for.
The video on this has meanwhile been removed from YouTube for "copyright reasons" having to do with the music. This seems to be a dreamed-up excuse, and I read that it is back up. However, for now I get the same "removed" message on that link.
Oh, I was wrong: the video-clip Bai Gaña Baka is back up; the other clips are still down. Keep trying, folks!
Next Victim: Tourism
Curaçao Tourist Board complains that ex sheikh of stagnation el Hakim had promised them a yearly government subsidy of 35 million guilders ($16.5) but they only got 25, which resulted in a 2011 loss of 3.2m instead of a 1.3m profit. For this year, loss may reach 4.8m.
Many people are expected to vote next Friday in what may, but hopefully will not be, the last free elections for this country.
So, When Do We Get Our Money Back?
We knew it all the time, but now Soab government accounting makes it official: the 5 cents per liter surtax on gasoline was illegal. Ex PM Shorty made out like it was meant for development of the barrios, but Soab found it was meant to pay back a future 35 million guilders loan to a foundation controlled by Shorty and administered by Curoil; but that hasn't even been formalized. Apart from the fact that Shorty's Mob wasn't allowed to borrow.
Here's an idea, actually two: stop that nonsense NOW and, more to the point, pay us our money back. I always punch two holes in those receipts and collect 'em for the Tax Person, so for me it's easy to prove how much Shorty owns me.
Mafioso Corallo paid large amounts of money for ex-PM Shorty's last election campaign, a fact that becomes obvious with a look at the documents published by Curaleaks. These facts have now been attached to my own complaint some weeks ago. Expectedly Corallo denies all and claims (from an unknown location) that those bank slips have been faked.
As nobody has as yet come up with links to Corallo financing Shorty's present election campaign, they may have grown somewhat more sophisticated in their methods. One thing's for sure, Shorty has much more money to roll this time; then again, maybe he stole it. From us.
Oh... Don't Mention It
The (in)famous new hospital is not even included in the new budget by the kicked-out B-Team. Guess they figured the deficit was bad enough already; half right there... Too Bad already! Or maybe they never even noticed... So who cares? They didn't.
The food packets and support cards are not on the budget either, just like 200 promised new police cars and renovation of community centers and sports facilities; all in all about 210 million guilders.
A newspaper journalist claims that, since any citizen can take part in government, the screening law (today in parliament) would be unconstitutional. He quotes several international articles to endorse his idea. I couldn't say: as far as I know several countries do have similar laws and the man is no lawyer; but it would be bad news for sure.
FOØL Godett will vote against; sure, would blow all his chances. He's a convicted criminal (fraud and corruption).
Shorty's MFK is distributing cards labeled Mi sosten [my support] that from January 1 would enable the holder to get a 100 guilders food packet per month; or it could be used for shopping. A press conference today should give more details. MFK president Thodé was enraged when newspaper Antilliaans Dagblad asked him if this wasn't buying votes: "How dare you!"
Central Bank and Justice are looking into the legality of this, but you have to admit it's a mighty clever trick. If it's forbidden by Friday, those suckers will certainly vote for Shorty in the hope that he will win and then come through regardless.
Let us figure this out fast and rough. If he gets 10,000 fools to vote for him, only slightly more than in 2010, he'd be emperor, king and pope, right? If he does pay up, which remains to be seen, that would cost him 12 million guilders. Which he could afford—his former government "lost" over four times that per year.
he'll have to admit there is a resemblance
mark the extra chins he's growing, in less than two years
Good to Know
No matter for what reason. PAIS Rosaria has left PNP Nashonal because they didn't want to make haste with total independence. At least, that's what I've been told; not by him, though. PAIS clams up about this, never mentioning the dreaded word at all.
Just now, a guy living around here came by just to show the food packet MFK had given him, like they give to many people around the barrios. Contents sugar, funchi corn meal, rice, cooking oil, sugar, corn flakes, corned beef... even more. But the guy said "I'm not gonna vote for them! This proves they're thieves, my vote is worth more to them than this."
We Got Those $%#*& in the Nick of Time
After former lay-offs in €urope, Vestas is now firing 800 workers in the USA and Canda, with 800 more to follow soon. This is because their product is not finding any
suckerstakers any more.
What is that product, you ask? Oh, it's wind generators.
Altogether, in the USA Vestas has received over $50 million in "stimulus" money. Gone With the Wind.
To be honest, I never felt they served for much more than getting rid of frustrations—and I know who's saying this. Both Fakebooc and Titter have pages dedicated to "getting rid of Shorty." (The Twitter account disappeared). Every little bit helps, hopefully it helps enough.
Yes, finally ex parliament president Aarsjes accepted his defeat; in so far that he emptied his room, and turned in his keys plus parliamentary stuff. He did hang on to his credit card and gasoline pass, but not to worry; Rozier assures us they've been blocked.
No doubt he'll sorely miss that fancy wooden toy he loved to hammer the table with. We'll miss him too, but not sorely.
Let's Hope It's Not Too Late
Now that Quackie Constancia, our former sinister of sickness has bitten the dust, maybe there's still a chance that, after the elections, common sense will prevail over naturopathic nonsense and that fluoridation of our drinking water will not be stopped in 2014.
Always check for yourself: the Fluoride Science web site has seven reports on fluoride, specifically related to bone cancer, enamel fluorosis, infant formula, IQ, kidney health, tooth decay, and fluoride toothpaste.
Wait Worth While?
The Ombudsman office has (finally) started investigating complaints that ministries have just ignored several court judgements. Remains to be seen what they'll do with the results, if any.
Big Small Favor
RMR kingdom minister council holds on to the "balanced budget" requirement, but gives us a chance until after the elections to achieve this. Phew! But in view of the recent polls, I'm really pessimistic. When the voting cattle go for Shorty and Wiels, all bets are off.
Give Your Toys Back
Ex sinister of theft Imalootin must return all the stuff he bought with
governmentour money. This includes five guns, seven iPads, one touchscreen, a digital camera and the Honda Accord he used as official vehicle. With all those toys, it's no surprise he didn't get around to doing any work.
Seven iPads! What did he do with all those? Probably gave most away and will now have to try and get 'em back—or pay up.
As it turns out, the same guy has sent in (and received compensation for) over 111k guilders worth of statements; about 5k/month. Now that they're checking those, seems there's a lot missing. Out of 28 so-called official trips, 24 are unheard of. Also gorging and guzzling with his mates like in Nero's Rome. You know, I am quite sure it'll be impossible to make him pay back.
We're All Doomed!
Interim minister Jardim has figured it out: there's a structural deficit of 100 million guilders ($55m), growing with 300m guilders/year. Worse, the crisis levy Jardim proposed to sinister of theft Imalootin would now result in a total recession. Jardim will present a complete survey of the financial status (hopefully before the 19 October elections) and hopes firing of civil servants will not be necessary.
Hey, can we get into a worse recession than what we have already? Give us all a break.
He can hope so, but what gives him the reason to hope so? This surplus of civil servants has been, ever since off-shore money stopped flowing in, the main cause of our problems. PAIS party claims they will bring off-shore riches back to our shores. Times have changed... dream on, PAIS.
He also tells us everybody will have to turn in 2000 guilders [$1100] next year to get us all out of this mess; that's 5600/household. You know, I have this feeling MFK, MAN and PS will sing a quite different tune in the election contest; if they mention it at all.
Meanwhile, the house market, with prices blown up to ridiculous levels by project developers attracting Dutch buyers with €uros to burn, is now collapsing. Good! Maybe now property tax will go down to reasonable levels—with still less money in government coffers.
It's hard to find a reason to keep that veritable army of civil servants. One of the main reasons we were always force-fed for a Curaçao status aparte was, we were supposed to get rid of the doubling of functions in national (Antillean) and island service. Then, after the last referendum, all those Antillean civil servants were absorbed by the new island nation, resulting in an even heavier structure, but now carried by one island.
Even if they're hardly the ones to talk, admittedly MFK is quite right in asking governor Goedgedrag what has been going on with the screening of the interim cabinet, now Team A. We have heard precious little about this.
Still Not Paid Their Rent
Kranshi civil registry still owes 600,000 guilders ($330k) to Monument Care Foundation for rent. At least, they're catching up... if slowly.
Gone, Hopefully For Ever
Aarsjes (still can't get the spelling right), ex parliament president, finally gave in and gave up his car keys (ouch—that hurts!) and keys to the meeting room. Aarsjes stated he holds the twelve parliament members who voted against him personally responsible for all costs because of that. They must be scared out of their underwear.
Offended Citizens, Unite!
An "offended citizen" has asked the Tax Inspector to investigate tax matters of former sheikh of stagnation el Hakim and his enterprises. This person mentions several allegations, of which we mention only some:
—El Hakim has not paid all taxes (and social security premiums) for his enterprise "Optica el Hakim"
—another company he owns, Botica Mahuma, is guilty of tax fraud
—he is also guilty of a scam for which he assumed a false capacity
—included are several proofs of el Hakim's lack of integrity
Sigh of Relief
That's done: there's a concept for a law for screening candidate ministers has been passed. For me, next step would be to screen them on psychiatric grounds. This guys Wiels definitely has something wrong with his head, but what do I know? At any rate, I don't want to be governed by a crook or a maniac.
The law is next supposed to be passed in Staten parliament ASAP. We can hardly wait. Best thing yet: the law, once passed, will have to be voted out with a 2/3 parliament majority.
Of course Shorty denies all about his mafia brother Corallo; he says it's a mere smear campaign. But newspaper Antilliaans Dagblad published a copy of an Interpol sheet stating that Corallo is wanted by Italy for "International crime/transnational crime and fraud", resulting in a world-wide arrest warrant.
Meanwhile, Dutch minister Spies is in trouble because Dutch parliament asks why both she and her predecessor Donner just let this go. Yeah, is what we all would like to know. Would have saved us all a lot of trouble if they hadn't. And parliament is rather interested to learn what function Shorty had in mind for the mafia-padrino. Guess we'll never find out.
Spies says Shorty shouldn't have done it. What else is new? We knew that all along.
Should be a memorable day, full of joy and festivities: we've been independent for two years. But between you and me, it rather feels like our flag should be raised half-mast.
Isla Refinery Prosecuted
At least, Akshon Sivíl has filed a complaint because Isla lent the government 17 million guilders to finance sinister Monky's "free" education. The country was not allowed to borrow by order of Cft financial supervision, which makes the act punishable with three years of prison.
Elias of the North Sea Jazz Festival is mad at ex-PM Shorty for telling the press that the government paid for a beach upgrade near World Trade Center (yes, we have such a thing as well). Elias says that government nor WTC paid a cent; he paid for it all.
Elias is one of the guys accused of trying to bribe MFK-parliament members to leave the party.
Frente Sivíl has caught vandals in the act, destroying their anti-Shorty banners. They were wearing MFK-party T-shirts and confessed they had been paid to do this.
Frente Sivíl has put up several giant banners with slogans like Schotte, bai gaña baka [Schotte, go and lie to the cows or don't try and fool us] and Wiels=Schotte=Dictator.
Just mention in passing that their "cow" looks suspiciously like it's ripped off from a Chick-Fill-A picture.
Three commissioners of central bank have announced officially that they have no more confidence in director Tromp. They have "serious doubts about the integrity" of Tromp's acts. However, there may be more to this than meets our casual eye. The Curaçao commissioners have long since refused to have meetings with Tromp, while their St. Maarten counterparts do not seem to have such problems.
Phones Are Out
No cell-phones are permitted while voting in the coming elections (October 19). Reason given is that press photographers made a nuisance of themselves; but the real reason probably is the persisting rumors that "some parties" are promising 100 guilders to each voter; they just have to take a picture of their vote, and show it to the party offering to pay. In fact, rumors have it they go as high as 350 guilders (~$200).
Some people are madder than wet hens about this. It's not hard to see why. But hey, a picture like that would be easy-as-pie to fake and then collect from several, let's say, interested parties.
Again, ex-PM Shorty is shown to be connected with mafioso Corallo. His May 2011 letter to the Italian government has turned up. Just like his sinister of injustice PS Wilsoen he bypassed the Kingdom, to ask for a "certificate of good conduct" for Corallo. (The letter was undated and in his clumsy English what he asked for was "a note on the reputation that Mr. Corallo has"—hey, Shorty never finished high school, after all. And his moll Stella van Rijn is not much better.)
The Italians replied via the Dutch ambassador that Corallo was connected with international drug dealing; he was an important figure in Sicilian mafia; and with his father was involved in money laundering in St. Maarten. Corallo did not seem very suitable for the "prestigious and important institutional function" that Shorty wanted to give him.
All this explains why, to Shorty, his downfall and the coming elections are almost literally a fight to the death. He has not delivered!
"Never, never again shall it be that this beautiful land will again experience the oppression of one by another."
Turns out, ex-PM Shorty, The Fallen Idol (not bloody much height to fall down from, is there?) wanted to give Corallo mafia-boss (so sue me, already) a "prestigious and important constitutional position". Whatever that means. The Italian minister of interior affairs strongly advised against this. More or less The End of the Affair, the more so as Corallo has since then disappeared Without a Trace. (Those are all movie titles, if you haven't noticed.)
Corallo is a friend of Robby dos Santos, and his ally Baetsen was nominated as president of the Curaçao Central Bank council of commissioners. Question is, what [... you know... ] moved Shorty to ask Italy's advice? Covering his ass? Could be. Well, that didn't work out: just asking for trouble. As if he needed any.
Letter Pops Up
Jardim's letter in which he warned ex-sinister of theft Imalootin that the country's financial situation was much worse than Cft/RMR knew, has now popped up and newspaper Antilliaans Dagblad claims to have a copy of all nine pages. Imalootin until now has been denying such a letter existed.
The public ministry has started investigating government-owned companies (Aqualectra utilities, Isla refinery and Curoil) in reaction to a complaint by action group Frente Sivíl, because these companies did not publish yearly accounts as required by law. Come right down to it, they plain raided 'em.
The sinisters of Shorty's Gang of Crooks will not get the exorbitant pensions of former cabinets, but, to be exact, only 3% + 70% of 3% in this case of their salaries (one year plus one unfinished year). How typical that a newspaper tells us all details but not the end conclusion: 5.1%.
Police is investigating possible or even probable arson at the Kortijn ice factory owned by ex-MFK "traitor" Rozier. One truck burned out completely and another one was heavily damaged. Damage up to ANG600k ($330k). To hear people talk, it's obvious to them who are the instigators: ex-PM Shorty and his mob.
Might as well be PS Monky of competitor Love Ice, already boycotted by many. Might also be something completely different; point is the atmosphere is so bad that people are only too ready to believe that.
Rozier states he will not be intimidated.
Next day, Telecuraçao showed the security tape of Kortijn IJs. It's clearly arson; question remains: who is or are guilty? Next question: was there any incitement?
PAR member Ayoubi's car, carrying posters and flags, got surrounded by a 30-60 people strong mob of MFK teenage youngsters, who started pounding on it. The PAR flags were ripped off and replaced by MFK flags; driver and his son felt highly threatened. MFK boss Shorty was on the scene himself but quickly disappeared. That's democracy MFK-style: mob rule.
Soab government accounting had a surprise raid at Isla refinery's offices. Next in line are Aqualectra utilities and Curoil distributing. Sic 'em, already!
The trade unions want to be partners in the discussions on old age benefits and health insurance, with commerce and industry. In other words, not leave it to the government.
Things are so bad, a security company has already decided not to celebrate new year's eve. And they predict it will get worse, with premiums going up for sure—after the elections, what else is new?
Ex PM Shorty claims that the burglars in his party office knew exactly which computers they needed to take: those with the results of polls and inquiries among the population. Must have been an inside job, he says and he ought to know. He also claims that eavesdropping bugs have been found in the office, in party members' cars and homes. Darkly adding that he knows whodunnit, as this is high-tech stuff. Not necessarily. They're for sale all over, as a web search will show you.
No Proxy Votes
Voting by proxy has been phased out. Seems, which is not hard to believe, that it was used to sell and buy votes, and that many used the vote for their own choice anyway. Good.
Some guys, following ex-PM Shorty's example maybe, have broken into his MFK party's headquarters and stolen ten computers. But all is not lost, MFK declared: they have file back-ups. But they do say it's sabotage, so they'd lose the elections (looking for excuses already?) Well, hopefully it helps.
Rioters Paid by Shorty
There were plenty of rumors about this, but for once they were true. The MFK "demonstrators" who formed the chorus in Shorty's comical opera set in Fort Amsterdam, were paid. It all came out when, as they did not get the promised money and complained—with FOØL Godett! They probably don't know the difference; admittedly, that can be hard. Finally, MFK Thodé paid them and declared "some were real MFK supporters" [emphasis added].
Let Us Stop Right Now
If you have been reading my remarks about wind and solar energy, I hope you came to your senses long since. Just thought I'd mention it: the Nissan Leaf (how green!—but in the autumn leaves turn brown and shrivel, drop to the ground and get burned or if they're lucky, composted) now is in problems because it will only run 44 miles in hot climates. Hey, 44 miles, that's 70 kilometers; hardly enough to drive from where I live to town, do some shopping and drive back. On a full tank in my [Korean] Chevy Spark, I could do that trick 4, or over 6 times, easy! And it's a small island. I rest my case.
You Won't Get Nøwhere There
Don't waste your breath and our facilities, Betrian! In the precious two, three weeks he's got he wants to hold Monky and Shorty personally responsible for their capers when internationally acccouncing a coup d'état. Hey mon, that's a pure waste of energy. What is the damage, in hard currency? Don't make yourself ridiculous in your turn, Betrian. Forget about those have-beens. Better concentrate on the job to be done: get rid of that shit once and for all!
The Sheikh Stepped Out
Sheikh of stagnation el Hakim has spent almost ANG166K (>$90k) on personal travel expenses from January to July. That's over 27k guilders per month. That doesn't include his
haremtribe accompanying him: it came out even higher, 180k guilders.
Hey look, they always were like that. All our government reps traveled all over the world at our expense, merrily imbibing Royal Class champagne. It's not a mere tradition, it's a well-documented fact. Still, el Hakim sets some kind of record. A sorry record, yes.
Some Good News
Shorty's 5 cents/liter gasoline surcharge for "barrio improvement" which by now has resulted in a 700k guilders ($385m) hoard, will be discontinued. Good news for all of us.
But not for Arsjes: the first parliament meeting voted to let him pay personally costs for the three meetings where he blocked admittance to Statenzaal so parliament had to rent hotel facilities. Also, his nice fat salary stops here and now. The guy doesn't seem to be able to hold on to any job.
The Show Goes On
For the parliament meeting yesterday afternoon, registrar Cijntje refused to hand over the key of Statenzaal to Arjes replacement Rozier. To avoid a confrontation the meeting was held in a hotel, where Cijntje was relieved of his duties (and now for the keys; surely there's another set somewhere! Still, the cops will go and collect them.)
Betrian announced that Curaçao's budget deficit now is 200m guilders ($110m) and will double in a few years if nothing is done.
Arsjes's parallel meeting did not reach a quorum.
SMOC Goes to Court—Again
Smoc after six weeks of waiting has lost patience with the non-results of all investigations to cause of and responsibility for the Jan Kock/St. Marie oil spill. They have now gone to court, a thing they have been forced to do all too often.
Gee, Another Committee!
It's called a "team of experts" who are supposed to help interim minister Jardim pull us out of the crap. Several points are mentioned where emergency room surgery is called for. But our favorite remark can only be their questioning if Team B's sinister of theft Imalootin "understood the warning letters Jardim sent him".
Gee, I wonder how much you get paid to be part of a team of experts.
Holland Wants Our Oil
PS WhirlieWiels is convinced that's the reason why Shorty's Mob, his hotshots, was removed. But of course! Why were we so obtuse to think the reason was they acted like a bunch of crooks. They act like crooks, they think link crooks, they talk like crooks: hence, they're crooks. And nincompoops at that. Is what we figured, and all the time stupidly thought Holland refrained from intervention; even though Shorty himself asked for it.
I've said before that I, strictly as a layman you understand, consider Wiels to be a victim of schizophrenia. Now, he adds paranoia to the heady mix. Too rich a mixture makes the engine stall, Wiels.
Smoc quotes a TNO 2007 report that so much oil has leaked out into Schottegat and Bullenbaai harbor, it's no wonder that there's a high amount of hydrocarbons present in the sea around us.
By the way Wiels, when will you finally have Shorty & Imalootin arrested?
Struggle and Strife,Cont'd.
PM Betrian has requested parliament head Rozier to hold a meeting. No doubt one more occasion, may be the last time, for Arsjes to lay his ears back, to buck and balk. Have to admit he takes his job seriously: the conscientious clown.
Clown Won't Stop Clowning
Arsjes declares he will not Shirk His Duty and will continue playing for parliament president to the end. We can only hope it's bitter. What a buffoon... the life of the PS party!
His, that is to say parliament's registrar Cijntje turns himself into an accessory by not acknowledging the legitimacy of the new Staten. Why don't they just give up?
Next day, after a morning parliament meeting called for by Arsjes (can't tell you if anybody but he and Cijntje were present) there was an afternoon meeting presided by Rozier, who announced if Cijntje would not recognize the "new" parliament he'd just be fired.
Music to Our Ears
Haven't seen it mentioned yet, but Team B, Shorty's Gang of Crooks is probably entitled to their full sumptuous minister and parliamentary pension. Reason to mention it, Team A's PM Betrian says he declines receiving two years of half-pay for the two weeks he'll be in charge. He'd rather continue his new career in music.
For all I know, the complaints that there can't have been time nor opportunity to give Team A, this interim cabinet, a proper screening are totally legitimate. But it's unsurprising that the complaints are shouted out loudest by those of Team B who always were suspected not to have passed the screening. Well, tough. I'm prepared to accept it if Team A disappears ASAP after the elections, and leaves proper screening laws behind.
Mere Rumors - Hah!
Well, now it's an email from totolika di pueblo [people's pigeonette] [sounds like a false and assumed name to me] accusing MFK, MAN and PS of buying votes with free phones. I can only say they never offered me a Blackberry, let alone a Frigidaire, so out of sheer spite I'll vote for another party. Not bloody much to choose from, though.
The Bore Bores on
While ex-PM Shorty has held a long discourse in which he blames everybody but himself for the opéra-bouffe-like happenings of last week-end. He also repeats that it's all to prevent new elections, but he'll show them once those have been held. Sounds like a contradiction to me; but then, does he ever know what he's talking about? Worst, he blusters, is that the first action of the interim cabinet is to guarantee proper screenings, that's just to get rid of him! (He got that straight. But not "just him".) And once again, what he has been boring us with before: it's only because some people can't let go of power. (And once again, listen who's talking.) Enough already.
If True It's Serious
Openbaar Ministerie [public ministry] has asked for the tapes of a press conference of MFK (ex-PM Shorty's party) in which allegations of bribery were repeated. Several party members claim they have received offers of half to three quarters of a million guilders ($275k to well over 400k) plus a job for leaving the party. Only Pisas seems to have lodged an official complaint, though, which allegedly has been passed on to the prosecutor for investigation.
Rozier, on his part, will now lodge a complaint against MFK including Shorty, Pisas, Koeyers-Felida and Garmes who accuse him of bribery. He also flaunts an email by Garmes stating they must get rid of minister of theft Imalootin and Van der Dijs; that advisors must be sought for Quackie Constancia and sheikh of stagnation el Hakim, and that those guys must be forced to do what their advisors tell 'em.
People who are said to have been bribing are ex-MFK member Rozier, governor Goedgedrag and North-Sea Jazz Festival organisor Elias. Yes, we have a North Sea jazz festival and also a Rotterdam film festival. Don't ask. Now for the Maori dance festival.
Tough Shit, Shorty
Dutch state law professor Bovend'eert, who wrote a letter which licensed Shorty to call the interim-cabinet a "coup" and made him ask for Dutch intervention, now has come to his senses and says the interim business is all kosher and legal. Better watch it next time before you start writing letters, Bovend'eert. Always think... think...
Ex-PM Shorty has been telling foreign media that he has been "locked up" in Fort Amsterdam. Well, that's not exactly what you'd call true. Patience, Shorty; but take care: that may be one of those self-fulfilling prophecies. But not in Fort Amsterdam; the time that enclosing Waterfort was big enough to hold the local prison is long past. Too many crooks.
Wait and See
There are complaints already that the interim cabinet has not been properly screened. Sounds kinda hollow as those come from the same corner that insisted Team B had been properly screened, which remains doubtful. Anyway, the first law the new cabinet will propose is a new, improved, screening for minister candidates.
Second point on the agenda is to do something about the debt, which under PM Shorty's masterful leadership has grown by half a million guilders per day.
Ex Top Clown Shorty finally left his Fort Amsterdam room—not sneaking out in the dead of night as I had expected but at 20:00. Musta been getting hungry. He turned in his keys including his car keys so he had to walk about an hour to his MFK party building. There, he held a speech to his cohorts: "we'll see after the elections." He got that straight.
Shorty told his club that he had received the support of the Cayman Islands and Haïti. Very impressive. (However, Chávez misses out on a fake enraged tantrum to help him win next week's elections.) Also,
ex-party membertraitor Rozier had asked all MFK parliament members to leave the party, promising them half a million guilders ($275k) plus a nice fat job each. Sounds like a standard price by now. All this quoting Shorty, it's not necessarily true! And it was all a hidden agenda, viz. to stop the coming elections. But didn't he just say we would see after the elections? Hey, don't ask me to explain, wrong number.
Wiels was not so satisfied with the behavior of the cops, who seem to have four (count 'em: 4!) trade unions. Most had chosen to follow the governor's course, and Wiels ranted they should be arrested for not arresting PM Betrian. But by whom? The SAP union's refusal to obey the governor did not seem to matter, not so you'd notice.
MAN, wisely for once, has so far refrained from comment.
Their Own Prisoners
The only ministers now left in Fort Amsterdam are PM Shorty and minister of theft Imalootin. The police have switched over to follow new interim PM Betrian's orders, and have surrounded the building. Even pizza-deliveries don't get through. And let's face it, those guys are the last ones you'd expect to go on a hunger strike.
As we don't have an army, always excepting the Royal Dutch Marines, that seems more or less that. Team A is now Team B and vice versa. Betrian seems to have tried to pay Shorty a visit, but he didn't unlock the door of his work-room. Didn't even dare pick up his phone, quaking, quailing and quivering under his desk. I stopped pulling that act before I was twelve years old. Anyway, Betrian didn't mind Shorty staying in there; he said he could do his work from any room.
New ministers are Smits, Jardim and Bodok.
No So Fast, Wheels
WhirlyWiels has to slow down a bit with his threatened "general strike"—the syndicate of trade unions has announced it supports the new interim cabinet, the "B-Team".
He also threatened to have new PM Betrian arrested. Too late.
Baah Baah Banana!
There is an interim cabinet now, they tell me. A fat lot of use: PM Shorty and his Mob of ~20 Clowns have locked themselves in
Ali Baba's Robbers GrottoFort Amsterdam, seat of government, and refuse to come out until after the October 19 elections. If then, of course. So they will celebrate the second anniversary of our proud independence in a gilded cage of their own. No doubt counting their money. Or just maybe they're working on the budget. I hope they remembered to take plenty of bananas to eat, through the mouth-froth. There are about fifty supporters, at least so many youngish folks reportedly freely walk in and out of Forti.
Police unsurprisingly refused to go in as ordered by the new government, consisting of four interim ministers.
Say, let's charge 'em rent! Or even better, save energy and cut their airco juice. Then they'll be out in a jiffy. But I warned we should have kept 'em out.
What Is This?
The RMR [kingdom minister council] has decided not to intervene in the political situation here, despite a request of PM Shorty via our man in den Haag, Osepa. So over here Shorty's Mob is agitating against any possible intervention and "re-colonisation" and there, it's asking for it.
The bad news is, they gave Shorty two more weeks to show a budget worth the name. As if he would, even if he could.
And by the way you know, minister of injustice PS Wilsoen finally gave in and wrote letters to the USA admitting that his earlier correspondence was entirely beyond the pale.
Let Us Celebrate
48% of Curaçao enterprises expect a smaller turnover this year (was 40% last year) and 36% say they have no money to invest. Before 101010, the date of our glorious independence, that was only 7%. Hurrah!
Wiels Whirls His Wheels
PS Wiels is accusing ex-PM Römer (she was that for two weeks or so) for having promoted the FOL (USA Foreign Operations base) to be established here. He is quite against it, as his fat friend Chávez of Venezuela hates it. But uh oh, it was Wiels's mate Wilsoen, now (still?) minister of injustice, who was the strong force behind it. Says Römer; for what that's worth.
No Civil War Yet
But we're getting too close for comfort. The interim cabinet is ready and screening has been done, but for financial antecedents. Small obstacle: PM Shorty has forbidden all ministries to send information to the screeners and to Central Bank. He has also forbidden all civil servants to be at their office after working hours. What! No overtime?
Candidates are Stanley Betrian, Cornelis 'Chucho' Smits, Stanley Bodok and Jose Jardim. Henri Jourdain is out, allegedly because of threats against him and his family. Advisor de Gouveia figures the cabinet can find a fifth member after installment. If and when, there's that.
The governor has left the island, accompanied by his MD, with heart problems.
Sure, Screen Them
Rumors are that an interim cabinet is as good as ready, but, wisely, this time (when it's much too late) there is insistence that the candidates be screened by VDC security. PM Shorty keeps threatening that he will have to be removed forcefully, no doubt hoping for riots and whatever else; well, here's some free advice: use his own trick and don't let him in!
All people now seem to have turned into professors of law, all with differing opinions on Fakebooc and letters to the newspapers. That's democracy, folks?
Shorty has asked for advice of a Dutch professor of law. That's foreign intervention! Didn't stop him from taking up valuable screen time in Telecuraçaos news, just to read out what that guy Bovend'eert wrote him—taking a line through Chávez and Castro, the king of Morocco and no doubt the tyrant of Iran.
Why Should They?
Minister of quackery Constancia has announced Isla refinery will finance investigation of the oil spill at Jan Kock/St. Marie. Weird, as they claim they have nothing to do with it (after first accepting responsibility).
That's a Relief (If True) But Still a Laugh
Alcides Coba (Bakoba's brother—remember him? vaguely...) says there's not a chance for a general strike as threatened by Wiels's Pueblo Soberano in case of an interim cabinet.
"Trade unions should not be meddling with politics and have never done so," he says. Well, we may remember Bakoba only vaguely, but his party Partido Laboral [workers' party] was based on the civil servants trade union and used the slogan Vota pa bo mes [vote for yourself]. Only in Curaçao...
Legalities and Mobs
On the one hand, there are politicians who maintain that, against all appearances, they are quite lawful in their coup, like PM Shorty and, from PS, Arsjes who's threatening that there will be a parliamentary investigation if or when they win the elections, of the parliament-members and the governor.
On the other hand, PS Monky and Wiels are downright inciting to riots and mob violence with references to "May 69". Monky will change all Dutch-language street signs, like Wilhelminaplein (if or when they win the elections,of course). So there! Yeah, that's highly important, Monky; the Post office will be really grateful—first of our priorities. And if you ask Holland, they will even pay for those signs. Maybe.
Lawyers or Laypersons
You know, in the USA they are always complaining that over 60% of the senators are lawyers. But hey, let's face it... they are making laws there and then I'd prefer having people who at least are supposed to know what they are talking about. It's certainly preferable to what we have here: a nitwit for PM who didn't even finish high school and, therefore, could never become a lawyer, telling the governor about the fine points of law. Yes, I mean Shorty. Oh, you guessed already?
It is not for the first time that PS WhirlyWiels threatens with a repeat performance of the May 1969 riots. He'd just love to see blood flow, especially white blood. But black blood would even be better as then he'll have martyrs. There will be a national strike, when the governor proceeds with an interim cabinet, he threatens; the 69 riots started with a strike as well.
But his supporting mob is not that big; only a couple of hundred goons, even if PS says 2000, were there to listen to his tirades that the interim cabinet only serves to delay the coming elections (for which I already received my convocation. By the way.) He claims he tries to calm down the gesundes Volksempfinden of the rabble. In that case, why call up a meeting?
PM Shorty has also stated, in a letter to the governor, that he will not resign for an interim cabinet. But the Dutch government has once again emphasized that it will not interfere in local politics. For once, they're wise as that would only make Shorty and Wiels point their fingers and scream "neo-colonialism".
Legally, it's a messier mess then you could hope to see.
"Frothing at Their Mouths"
Like I predicted (it wasn't hard). PM Shorty is ranting, raving and (de)railing that he deplores (I dare say) the governor's intervention in politics by wanting an interim cabinet; he even literally says "all those happenings are to be blamed on the power hunger of some who at all cost want to sit down on the proverbial chair of power." That's how he talks. How he talks! Look who's talking...
And PS Monky has sent out an international letter to ask for support (yawn) against "the coup" against what he calls his social-liberal government. It's in Spanish so who does he expect to help out? The Fat Dictator of Venezuela, Chávez? Centenarian Dictator of Cuba, Castro? Has-Been Dictator of Argentina, Fernández? Coke-Dealing Dictator of Bolivia, Morales? Or his plain old Colombian
drug-baron clubliberation movement FARC?
And why not write it in Arabic and send it to the Muslim Brotherhood and Iran, Shorty's and sheikh of stagnation el Hakim's buddies; maybe we'll get a Curaçao spring next. But it won't be a Silent Spring.
No Election Roads
That's what you get with those sudden elections. Nobody can prepare properly. Used to be so, roads were fixed in certain neighborhoods to try and get votes in return; not so this time. Even Mudbelly Cooper at the public works post can't accomplish the trick.
But I am all against buying votes this and other ways, and propose a law that the biggest presents political parties are allowed to distribute are those little sticks they use to spear miniature sausages with at cocktail parties. Okay, those may have their parties' color—but there it ends. One per voter is the limit; sausages not included.
How Does He Do It?
Minister of theft Imalootin now has a debt with the tax person and social security bank SVB of in total 230k guilders; that's 40k more than a year ago.
Oh No? Oh Yes!
Governor Goedgedrag has asked old politician Mendes de Gouveia to work on an interim-cabinet that can count on a parliament majority, before September 28. That's next Friday. So it will be at work for maybe less than three weeks, depending on how soon the next one will be formed after the new October 19 elections.
The good news is, Arsjes farcical manipulations have now officially been stopped, ended. Over and done with. Arsjes and Shorty and the Gang, go home—for now. Maybe jail will follow. Do not pass Go and do not collect more money.
Shorty now accuses Goedgedrag of intervening in politics. For once, he got it straight.
Gas for Energy
PAR Leeflang submits a "crisis plan" to start importing natural gas, together with Aruba and Bonaire, for utilities and Isla refinery. She claims this would result in a pollution reduction by 70%.
Hey, why don't we vote for PM Shorty again and build more wind generators instead? It's claimed that would give a 100% reduction.
A citizen has proposed to boycott the coming elections. It's very hard to imagine what he thinks would be achieved with that—even if it had the slightest chance of success.
All parties feel that Cft financial supervision is a useful institute and must go on. That is to say, all parties except the coalition parties. But naturally!
They all agree taxes shouldn't go up. Yeah sure, what with elections coming up any other statement would be suicidal. On the other hand, none of them says taxes must go down. Maybe there's some honesty left in the bunch (though I doubt it.)
Dean of Lawyers Frielink, leaving his post in a few months, points out that the Reglement van Orde [parliament rule of order] states clearly that when doubt exists on the interpretation of a provision, the parliament majority decides and not the president. Hear, hear. Put that in your pipe and smoke it, Arsjes.
Frielink also stated that the present troubles show we need to install an independent Court of Justice on constitution matters.
Three guys working for our post service are traveling (Air Mail of course, First Class) to Qatar for four weeks to attend a three week conference. Whe are not told what that costs us. Director Sluis does tell it's "in the country's vital interest", otherwise our rates may go up. That they will anyway.
No News Is
Nothing new there: RMR kingdom ministers' council, basing their ideas on Cft financial supervision, state that Curaçao is heading, like the legendary lemmings, to a fall down the cliffs of bankruptcy. But, and that news is getting really old, Curaçao pooh-poohs this and says RMR exaggerates. Besides, they're working hard on it. They say.
Doing Fine There: Crime & Murders
We're doing fine: Curaçao is high up in the international list and if we keep it up, we may become champs yet. We yearly have 296 atrakos [assaults] per 100,000 inhabitants. We haven't made it to the Costa Rica level of 943 yet, but are far ahead of Jamaica (104) and even Colombia (120).
As regards murders, we need more work there; the trend now is only 20/100,000 for this year. That's better than Mexico (19) but we have a long way to go before we can hope to beat Honduras (92).
Philippe Maaskant's letter to Amigoe newspaper, quoting Report on Citizen Security in the Americas.
The Public Ministry OM has started an investigation to the cause of the Jan Kock/St. Marie oil spill, the very day after it was discovered. No further details yet, except samples have been taken and should give a fingerprint-like (better analogy would be DNA)indication where the oil came from.
The samples "will be" sent to an unnamed foreign lab. Will be? They've had them for a month already! And if PdVSA/Isla turn out to be guilty, they can get a maximum fine of ANG10k ($5500) if this has been a recurring offence; but they can't be forced to clean up.
Not That Bad
PM Shorty claimed in an advertising spot there are 22,000 people here who have no medical insurance and so no access to health services. But Antilliaans Dagblad checked the facts and it turns out there are more insured people than inhabitants! (Many are doubles, of course.)
Shorty's MFK party claimed to have gotten the numbers from Quackie Constancia's ministry. That explains it.
Results: MFK 26% - PS 26% - PAIS 21%, PAR 16%, MAN 5%, FOL 3%, DP 2%, PNP 1%.
That's a comfy majority for MFK and PS in combination with loser MAN. PAIS may be a big winner but still is nowhere, even in combination with MAN (won't happen) and big loser PAR.
2nd poll in a series of 3 by UNA University.
Not Political Nitpicking
The public ministry has received my complaint against PM Shorty and will consider if it entails more than the farcical cases between politicians they are bombarded with. In that case, they will postpone it until after the elections; and I wouldn't blame them. In the USA they call those law-suits "frivolous" which is very much to the point.
But you can't blame me for feeling it's more serious than that. If the decision would be to postpone it, that's fine with me. With so little to choose from, my worry is not the elections; rather that of a government with convicted crooks and criminals.
More Waste by Big Waist
Parliament has published an expensively printed full-color brochure, distributed house-to-house, with a photographs of all its members and of course one showing its president Arsjes. It's all mere propaganda claiming that they've done such a lot of good hard work; of course under you-know-whose great leadership. Like one law every six weeks. Lots of quarreling and brawling, that they did.
Sue Shorty Mata!
Your hopefully esteemed webmaster has started, incited and abetted by a friendly lawyer, court procedures against PM Shorty for fraud and what-have-you. None of our community institutions wanted to do this... "don't make waves... don't rock the boat"—so finally it came down upon my weak back.
I'm awfully sorry, it's all in Dutch. For those who understand that ugly but really very useful language, click here. There's a lot of stuff there.
And mata means, in Papiamentu, to death.
No False Feelings of Safety
Minister of injustice Wilsoen says he doesn't want to achieve that just by locking people up. He does not need to worry, we feel as unsafe as hell with the prison bursting at the seams. But no, he continues, "the problem lies in the roots, the family, and we're working hard to make that better."
Maybe, probably, he does... I'm sure his family has more money and feels more secure than we mere voting cattle... But taking a line through PM Shorty and his many extra-marital relations, what the fuck (the right word in the right place) is he talking about? Just saying. Just thought I'd mention it.
Cheap for the Price
The new elections will cost 1.569.645 guilders (~$865k) all-in. That's a low price to pay for getting rid of that mess—if it works.
Friday's The Day
Next Friday Cft financial supervisor will discuss the efforts of the Curaçao government at a corrected budget. If only that same day measures were taken to get rid of that inept mess.
More Air Traffic Trouble
All of a sudden, that is to say that this is the first we were told about this, director of Curaçao Civil Aviation Authority Quirindongo has taken his leave, and US FAA rep Henriquez, here to support Curaçao in improving FAA status, has left the island. Which means that Curaçao's degradation will last for still longer than "until 2013".
This has serious consequences for Curaçao air development; InselAir has already moved its base to Aruba in order to offer flights to the USA. But MAN Mudbelly Cooper would rather hassle competitor DAE than give real support, like work on adapting the law, one cause of FAA discontent.
Another slight problem is, only now it turns out ANG3m is needed (hey, listen, what sort of planning is this) and of course there's no money.
But I Want to Manage It
Minister of theft Imalootin wants to manage ABVZ [special illness costs insurance], but the institutions dependent from it would first like to see the juridical groundwork explained. They're afraid the fund will be stripped naked when the government gets its paws on it. Whatever gave them that idea?
AVBZ manages insurances for risks that are uninsurable elsewhere; like nursing and treatment of handicapped people and of pyschiatric patients.
Sick of Suing
The Openbaar Ministerie public ministry lets it be known that they are sick of playing the umpire in political brawls. Please work it out among yourselves, they say, otherwise the courts will get involved in politics which is the last thing we all need; next, they'll be accused of partiality.
Bad, But News, Not
The 2013, 2014 and 2015 budgets will show a deficit of ANG187m (>USD100m) each. But that's only what the ministry of theft says now, so better be prepared for much worse.
A peninsula in Schottegat harbor has been "cleaned" as the local term is (means denuded of all vegetation, in other words made ready for building). This is highly valuable real estate property, but nobody seems to know or wants to tell who is in charge. Theoretically it's CPA Curaçao Port Authority, not the most reliable institute around (no comment from there); but it could be some Venezuelans. Also rumors of manipulations by PM Shorty come to mind. We'll just have to wait and see until it's too late and the fact has been accomplished; as usual.
Who was it said: "Quick! Before the new elections!"?
Two ministers who have not got a vote of no confidence are Trinidad (governance, planning and service) and Koeiman (social development, labor and welfare). For some reason.
The governor has announced meetings with several guys to form an interim-cabinet. Sometimes, often, I think I'm crazy, but what to think now?
And of course PM Shorty declares this will not lead to an interim cabinet. Why don't you shut up, go home and count your money, Shorty—we know much too well what your opinions are. Better still, let the media stop asking Shorty for his opinions. He's history. I sincerely hope.
As for now, the Dutch government has no wish to interfere in this mess. Of course, we are still waiting for the RVM council of kingdom ministers reaction to the Cft financial supervision judgment on PM Shorty's Mob last whack at a budget. Even then, my prediction will come true: those guys will have to be removed frothing at the mouth; they will have delayed as much as they could to keep on gathering as much loot as they could.
Unwholesome Entertainment for the Masses
It really looks more and more like a comedy of
horrorserrors written by an expert French writer for the théatre boulevardienne. Arsjes has lodged a complaint against eleven parliament members (you know which ones) for "forgery": they sent forth an illegal convocation for a parliamentary meeting. All of them guilty of forgery? Each invited all the others?
On the other side, ten, count 'em: 10 votes of no confidence against all ministers have been accepted and sent on to the governor. Guess he could use some valium right now!
Banana Battle: Clowns Clash
The Staten parliament majority wanted a meeting, but PS bomba WhirlieWiels and his lackey parliament president Arsjes thought different. They had collected a gang of strong-arm boys to stop the B-team from entering the building, and a vulgar brawl ensued where blows fell (Godett almost lost his glasses; his face he's lost long since). Police, who were present, afterwards declared "there were no incidents worth mentioning". Finally, the majority wisely retreated to Plaza hotel where they accepted a vote of no confidence in the cabinet; which should now resign, which they did already.
It's anybody's guess what'll happen now. You can read parts of and comments on the constitution on Norbert George's Fakebooc page (in Dutch) but these are pretty vague already and open to different interpretations. Boils down to, nobody ever foresaw a bizarre situation like this and it's time for new elections—but we'll be having those already!
Worst part is, that's the Dutch constitution, for the country (not kingdom) of the Netherlands and it wouldn't apply here.
For copyright reasons, can't show you the newspaper photo of Wiels and Arsjes in action: a veritable mountain of flesh and a dwarf, surrounded by their goons.
When the BOO power unit doesn't come back on-line in time, a general shutdown of Isla refinery becomes possible; there's even talk of the present situation lasting until next year. The refinery's loss because of all this year's delays already exceeds USD80m. As usual, downers are expressed in USD, so for us that means ANG144m.
Now that ex-MFK Rozier too has been accused of several criminal facts, among which stealing ANG60K worth of cheese (really! that's USD33k), he is disgusted and here's some good advice: when you happen to meet him, don't even mention the word "screening".
That's No News!
PM Shorty will not cooperate with the formation of an interim cabinet. Hey, he might as well cut his own throat and get it over with, let's face it.
There's a new site up, Curaleaks - oops, gone - where you can find many interesting titbits (I love that spelling, even if it's all wrong) on Shorty. My sincere hope is they will publish more and more of that stuff. The problem is digging it up out of a mountain of... well, you know... but there's plenty of it! And plenty more from where it came from, to quote Milt Gross. (Please use latex gloves, they may have ten fingers but still are only much less than 1/10th the price of condoms.)
He Got That Straight
PM Shorty, who did speech at the farcical Staten opening of the parallel parliamentary years (yes, we have two, count 'em, parliaments now!) told us among many utterly uninteresting things that "independence did not bring magical solutions for the country's problems". Don't we know it.
Maybe That Works
As from October 1, that's next month, those with a PP card for free medical treatment will have to pay cash for their urology treatments: the medics haven't been paid for the past two years.
I guess Quackie Constancia has been saving up for her new hospital. It's to be hoped she wises up in time, like with the botikas.
Ahead of the Game
Britain's WWII PM Churchill famously quoted "it has been said that democracy is the worst form of government except all the others that have been tried." According to the book Saving Democracy from Suicide we're far ahead of other democracies in one respect: "the United States and Europe are suffering from huge debts, high unemployment, and several cases of bankruptcy looming on the horizon. The root cause of this is the one-man-one-vote system where to get elected, politicians must often promise popular but wrong economic policies."
So let us vote for that tired old corrupt bunch again and show the world how progressive we are! We here reached that state of affairs decennia ago.
Robber and Chum
According to a VDC memo, Robbie dos Santos (he of the lotteries) paid PM Shorty the sum of two million guilders (USD1.1m) so he'd get his hands on a terrain near Playa Abou (Knip/Kenepa).
What a **** Mess
Godett claims opening of the parliamentary year by Arjes is illegal.
Arsjes says parliament has always had an open ear for the needs of the people; in Dutch that's "an open ear for the natural calls of the people."
He brags 25 laws have been approved; that's ~8 a year or less than 1 every 6 weeks.
WhirlyWiels has started legal proceedings against Telecuraçao and CBA televsion for transmitting a Frente Sivíl spot making him responsible for the high island criminality. Telecuraçao responds they have merely transmitted it, he should sue Frente Sivíl. Wiels will be busy in court!
Frente Sivíl released a ~10 minute YouTube movie Ken ta Schotte? E Berdat [Who Is Schotte? The Truth].
Free Education has been postponed until after the next elections; more vague vacuum for the schools and parents to wonder what.
PM Shorty denies that the paramedics have been promised anything by Quackie Constancia; how could they with Cft rejecting all their budgets? Would be a lot more believable if Shorty and His Mob made a real effort to comply with Cft.
He will not do as requested by the parliamentary majority, install an interim cabinet; his legal advisors have told him this should be done by Staten itself. The man is too late, Staten did meanwhile take that action.
Like I asked right away, how much money went to that superfluous legal advice?
Cft financial supervision has, not unexpectedly, not accepted minister of theft Imalootin's second fling at a budget. Nobody's surprised, in the last place Imalootin himself, I guess. What's surprising is they were faster than announced. They must be in a hurry, just like we.
And Dutch parliament applauds our parliament majority's action. Now it's time to get worried?
Kicked Out! But Gone?
Staten/parliament head PS Arsjes, the Fat Fascist has yesterday been voted out by an emergency meeting of 11 members (PAR, PNP, FOL and ex-MAN Cleopa). Ex-MFK Rozier will be the new president; ex-con Godett vice. Elections, they declared, will proceed. The expectation is Arsjes will have to be forced by the cops to turn in his official car keys.
Good thinking. I predicted a month ago "those guys would have to be dragged out kicking and screaming, and frothing at the mouth." Now, Arsjes shrieks it's all illegal; he threatens to sic the cops on the staten members for not appearing at the final meeting. They state they are not afraid of that. It has even been suggested that Arsjes's act may be punishable with thirty years in jail.
The opening of the new year will not be "celebrated" so even PM Shorty won't be able to deliver his
pack of liesspeech.
The Hoarse Horse Laughs—Arsjes and Shorty opened the new year anyway. As the USA-blogs are wont to say, bring on the popcorn and let the show begin. But Imalootin wasn't there, he'd just had bad news, and Quackie Constancia came late. Típiko.
Almost nobody. Not only the opposition staid away, only five members in total thought it meaningful to appear at the last public Staten/parliament meeting of the year. Can't blame 'em.
Tomorrow morning the new year will be opened. Do you wonder who'll be there to listen to PM Shorty speech? I wouldn't take the trouble myself. When there's no quorum again, the new year won't be opened (what for anyway?), making fools of Shorty and Arsjes. Not hard to do.
Shorty: Short on Proofs
The following is adapted from an article signed by former PAR minister Omayra Leeflang.
Iran is prepared to invest USD600m in the rebuilding of Haïti after the devastating earthquakes. The beady, greedy eyes of PM Shorty must have noticed right away, and such a sum could mean a nice source of income for his many companies. Which helps explain he and Haïti president are so often seen together with his father-in-common-law van der Dijs, and traveling together on cosy trips to Venezuela in Fat Dictator Chávez's private plane. One more reason why Curaçao would cooperate on illegal oil shipments to Iran.
Shorty has an understanding with Typhoon Capital (of course long since down the drain... the name only!) and wanted them to build the Curaçao wind parks, but alas, as Aqualectra already had un understanding of their own with NuCapital and NuCapital threatened to sue, Typhoon Capital was out. However, Shorty can still make some money by having Typhoon build wind parks in Haïti.
Shorty's interest in improving these here falls far short of his real interest in "importing" Colombian "technology" for this scheme into Haïti. Pots of gold! And this again is strongly supported by the persistent rumors that PS Monky is strengthening contacts with Colombian
resistance organisationdrug barons club FARC.
Poor, poor people of Haïti. Life for them is bad enough without Shorty's attention.
Sushi Korsou: Still There
Photographer Bea Moedt uploaded photographs of the rubbish-heaps to her Fakebooc page "
DushiSushi Kòrsou". Sheikh of stagnation el Hakim didn't like it and asked her to delete them; but she won't. Just like in real life, that stuff is there to stay.
Hey, el Hakim, why not instead have Selikor junk that litter and have your colleague Quackie Constancia hire some ambience cops to check on the dumpers? But I understand, you guys have better uses for money. Still, removing the rumble would be much better for tourism than just removing the photographs.
Nobody ever asked me to remove this page, probably figured it'd be of no use. They got that straight.
More Oil Leaks
liesdisavowals by PdVSA/Isla refinery it turns out more crude oil has leaked, at several occasions, from Curaçao Oil Terminal at Bullenbaai. Confirming our suspicions. Last time was yesterday.
Thrift, the Government Way
Pensioned civil citizens who opted to go live in Holland complain that their pensions often arrive a week late; even delays of two or three months seem to occur. That would save the government a hefty amount of interest, which can then be put to
Wait and See
Dutch minister Spies is convinced that the Curaçao people agrees with the Cft Aanwijzing to get the Curaçao government to behave. But the last UNA poll shows a solid majority for Shorty's MFK and WhirlyWiels's PS.
PNP Ersilia-de Lannooy opened the academic year at UNA university with a discourse on how to avoid future problems like this. One problem there: first we'll have to get a government that accepts the laws she proposes to accomplish this.
Isla-manager Gijsbertha claims the by now world-(in)famous photograph of an oil-covered flamingo has been photoshopped. However, Smoc's Peter van Leeuwen took it himself on Saturday afternoon August 25. Oil and all.
The good news is, we now have a Inspector of public health, Dutch Huurman (the post had been empty since April). If there's no replacement on December 13, he will consider to remain. Says he found a backlog of complaints on his desk, "an enormous stack".
Clear Sign of Mud
The governor will not be present at the burlesque of opening Staten/parliament. Customarily, he holds a speech there about the government plans for the coming year. There may well be such things, but they wouldn't like us to know about it. Then, customarily, the budget for next year should be presented. There's no such thing.
Instead, our chief clown, PM Shorty will be there.
What with one thing and another, Aqualectra utility is as good as kaput. Sparing you the details (and believe me, they're ugly) they want the government to stop regulating their prices so they can get real. I would have less problems with that if it wasn't Aqualectra.
First, the consumers must pay up for the 2012 loss of 31.9m; then, a solution must be found (I can guess where: same place) for the 51.7m 2011 deficit. That's a total of USD46m or 2500 guilders per family.
Aqualectra says it will take them five years to get back to a healthy position. Means 500 guilders/year extra for you and family for the coming five years.
If only it would stop there.
Fatso Digs In
Yessir, PS Arsjes refuses to leave his post as parliament head, and so does his number 2, consort MFK Thodé. Twelve parliament members, a majority, want them to go but he digs in his front hoofs, stretches his back, lays his ears back, balks and brays. He says "he regrets" their idea is illegal.
He also states he will do everything to have the new elections proceed. Uh oh.
Yeah, that's the second time this week Mudbelly is sued. This time by the union of gas pump owners Copda, who take exception to Mudbelly allowing a news station to be built on Caracasbaai. A station within a 5km radius from an existing one is not permitted, and there are three.
More on more rumblings in the coalition; Copda is headed by PM Shorty's by-side and the new station is owned by a member of competing Asogas. Sure, they're all crooks.
What's with this Fat Fascist and his personal baby Caracasbaai, anyway?
What To Do?
The governor still has not received the final advice by his legal experts on how to deal with PM Shorty's Putsch, aided and abetted by Arsjes. It should have been in on last Wednesday.
Come on, Quackie
Paramedics want an instant reply to a week-old petition insisting their tariffs will be immediately adjusted (which means, raised—now). They are afraid that they will be the victims of minister of quackery Constancia's unrealistic budget approach. And so are we.
Meanwhile, that same Constancia is complaining that PdVSA does not deign to reply to her questions on the oil spill. Now you know how it is,
These things serve to isolate drug couriers, mulas, arrested at the airport as suspected of having swallowed condoms filled with cocaine. This is for smuggling the stuff to Holland, where there's a willing market. Some people will do anything for money. Anyway, those guys are put in a cell until nature has run its course and the condoms come out. Burning question here is, who looks for the cocaine then? But that's not the problem.
The problem is, these cells have been ready for years but there's nobody in 'em. Narcotic dept. refused to work there because of "unsanitary circumstances" (aha! the answer to our question). So they refuse to arrest suspects.
Sinister of injustice Wilsoen says he has been promised money to fix the cells, but his counterpart of theft Imalootin says there's no budget. Guess not; not for that anyway.
But don't run out to apply for a mula job; nobody knows how many of 'em are arrested at Schiphol AMS.
Populist, Not Popular—I Hope
Guess those educators are not so reassured and relieved, after all: now PS sinister Trinidad is raving against PM Shorty's speech promising the teachers payment by half September, while he knows damn well there is no money for that. He calls Shorty "populist." Hey, listen who's talking.
Keep Trying, Arsjes
Parliament president Arsjes plans to convene four new committee meetings. Won't bother you with the dates or subjects, it's a safe bet nobody will come.
Why should they? It's an even safer bet those committee members will get their paycheck anyway.
The decompression tank is still not operating. First the air-pump had to be fixed. Would have thought that's a rather essential component of the contraption, but hey, it's made in Venezuela, need I say more? But now there's no adequate supervision for patients.
There was a Curaçao-born MD expert who has been working for years to get this thing going, but half a year ago he gave up and departed for Holland. Now we're promised (by minister of quackery MFK Constancia) that he'll be back here next week; but newspaper Antilliaans Dagblad thought to ask him and he has not even decided yet.
Oh, speaking of Constancia, for "her" new hospital the government needs to borrow money, for which no approval has been asked from Cft [financial supervision]; and Cft states they would not approve anyway. So there.
About time, too. MAN Mudbelly Cooper will be sued by DAE airline for "damaging credibility, performance, image and sales" of the company. Besides, Cooper has been accused of "Gestapo-like tactics" by holding razzias in DAE's offices and insisting on checking all workers' papers there, IDs and work permits: "Ausweis und Arbeitserlaubnis, schnell! Oder mitkommen."
Say, don't know where you sit and read this, but do you have your work permit on you? Thought so. And yeah, I know where you sit on.
Wait and Don't See
More trouble at Isla refinery. Now it's the BOO power plant that does not deliver, so the start-up of the revised cat-cracker had to be postponed. Again. New Improved Date is October 11; that would be 6 months since April 12; it was supposed to take 6 weeks.
The Fat Fascist
MAN Mudbelly Cooper wants to ground DAE because they have the boldness, the effrontery, the audacity, the... thank Roget for his Thesaurus... to offer the traveling public better deals than the competition (Inselair, Tiara) can. They dare go below the government stipulated prices! Such... but I'd repeat myself.
Another sign of the split in government, as DAE is a darling of Cooper's coalition partner sheik el Hakim, sinister of stagnation.
Stirring the Mud
Transparency International has arrived here for an investigation, finally. However, give up all hope that their report, not expected before next year anyway, will be of any help in getting rid of some characters. They say in so many words: "We do not point fingers, we search for a preventive approach to strengthening the government system." Small wonder PM Shorty preferred this to a committee to investigate five of his Mob members.
TI announced more visit(s) will follow.
What a Farce
Staten parliament will hold its official opening session next week, on September 11. The governor will speech on this ceremonial occasion, but minister of theft Imalootin's 2013 budget will not submitted. Then, military parades. What a sad joke, on us.
Isla Denies Oil Spill
After first apologizing and indicating it was their fault all along, all of a sudden Isla refinery denies that the saliña crude oil spill came from the COT Bullenbaai installations. Let the court cases begin! Other parties are flabbergasted by this turn-around.
We are now waiting for the result of a chemical oil analysis which should prove where the oil came from. Isla claims it's from a random oil slick at sea.
news flash: As I predicted right away, Monumentenzorg has started legal proceedings against Isla refinery. This can go on for years.
following flash: it's Quackie Constancia who has started legal proceedings. Well, blow me down. Will miracles finally start? Hey Quackie, does Shorty agree?
Here, you can listen to Isla director Gijsbertha statement that the oil is from COT.
How Ridiculous and Clueless
The last few trips we took from Hato airport, we bought some drinks in there to take aboard, in order to supplement the much-too-few liquids those airlines provide you with to fight dehydration. We bought them for outrageous prices in the airport shopping mall, as they would not have passed the pre-boarding inspection.
Then, they were taken away from us when boarding. Happened twice.
Hey, listen you dummies! Wouldn't it be much more efficient to check the drinks delivered to those shops? Royal *$$-holes!
Thought I'd mention it because now, more than a year later, T$* is pulling the same trick in USA waiting lounges.
A Telecuraçao documentary on the future (such as it is, what there is of it) of CDM/DOK that was shown yesterday can be seen here. In Papiamentu.
Oil Slick, Cont'd
According to Leon Pors of Caribbean Footprint Foundation, the oil leak in COT/Bullenbaai was caused because an automatic valve didn't work. Trouble is, it has not been working for years. Hey, only PM Shorty's Mob can keep secrets on this small island, and even they have a hard time.
Cft Worries a Lot, So Do We
Don't have to tell you much, we've been through all that before. But just like us, Cft has little confidence in all those ad-hoc stopgap stratagams Shorty 's Mob is taking in its desperation to avoid a take-over.
The school-teachers have gone on strike, as they are worried (and well might be) about their next salaries. PM Shorty went to visit them and promised they'd get what's coming to them on September 14. But sinister of ignorance PS Monky says it can't be done before two weeks later.
Guess those educators are all reassured and relieved now.
Old Dogs, Old Tricks
Now it's the opposition refusing to partake in Staten/parliament committee meetings. One can follow their reasoning: it's pretty useless to be there when there's nothing to decide upon anyway. Naturally the coalition says it's a shame to make the MP (that would be Shorty, keeps him off the streets) and others to come to the meetings for no purpose. Would be to no purpose anyway, am I right?
Wiels "Corrupt Traitor"
According to PNP Peterson, PS WhirlyWiels is a corrupt traitor who keeps inciting the population agaist the makambas, Dutch neo-colonialism and [you name it] because he's getting paid for it by those lottery bosses, the dos Santos bros. I tend to feel Peterson has a point. A strong point. Several strong points.
Incidentally, this would mean that both PS and PM Shorty's MFK party are financed by those (and probably other) hoodlums.
Cheaper Electricity: One Half Cent per kW!
The media are all excited; we, not so much. Doesn't make a real difference on a price of say 80 cents. Water, on the other hand, is going down with 37cents/m3 which is worth the trouble. It's because of adaptation to fuel prices—rather strange, as those have gone up since the last tariff adaptation.
Maybe it's more to do with the coming elections.
Shorty Lied Again
Akshon Sivíl has withdrawn the complaint with Ombudsman against attorney general Piar. As it turns out now, MOT [unusual transactions] has never passed on Shorty's transactions to the OM public ministry, which accordingly never investigated them. In other words, Shorty lied once again when he insisted that OM had investigated those transactions. This is stated in Piar's letter to Akshon Sivíl, who will now consider other legal actions.
First Charge Station
At Hato airport, the first charge station for electromobiles AKA clown cars has been opened by sheikh of stagnation el Hakim. (Wonder how that first car got there for the photo op; was it pushed?) Anyway, the sucker that buys that Volt can now get it fueled. Will more Volts follow? Chevrolet is closing down the production line for the second time this year.
Botikas will go on dispensing drugs as SVB social security bank has reached some compromise with their owners' union VAE. Small thanks to Quackie Constancia (who actually is number 2 on PM Shorty's MFK election list).
Political parties all agree: prevention is the solution to the wave of criminality, as the saying goes. All this because of elections coming up, you understand. MFK wants more community centers (paid from our 5%?) and sport fields, "so the youngsters won't become criminals because they're bored." PNP wants police cars near banks when the oldies go collect their pensions. PAR and PAN have no such explicit ideas, but they all agree prevention is the solution. See? They can agree if they try.
Governor Asks Advice; But Why?
The governor asks the advice of two lawyers on what to do about the cabinet and parliament. Let us say that takes two weeks. Then, an interim cabinet might take two more weeks to form. So probably the governor will decide at that point that it's not worth it because there's only three weeks left before the new elections.
He may also wait for the RvM and Cft; as miracles never cease Shorty's Gang has submitted a new budget, and it will take two weeks to check that out as well.
But it's good news, mainly for those unneeded lawyers. Gee, I wonder how much they get paid for that superfluous advice?
Just to let you know, I read some more statements by perfumed circus-tent size silk underpants and decided not to give that guy any more attention unless it matters. As he's put himself in the off-side position (serves him right) he probably won't matter any more. Phew.
And if he does matter again in the future (he's PS WhirlyWiels #2 on the candidate list, and Monky is out), might as well give up on these comments. But I won't.
While the Getting Is Good
Amparo dos Santos, most definitely a relation of Robber dos Santos, had been stopped before building apartments at Caracasbaai but now is at it again. He may feel it's now or never, before the new elections or 1 September, or whenever. But soon.
MAN Mudbelly Cooper states that "all buildings on Caracasbaai peninsula are illegal" which of course can't be true, as Fort Beekenburg and the old sanatorium are located there. He also has the temerity to go on declaring that they were licensed during the former government period; of which he formed part.
Hey Cooper, while we're at it, how about that halving of fuel prices you promised us in 2010?
Calling the Wall
About the question why action was taken so late on the Jan Kock oil slick:—
Kustwacht coast guard published a photograph taken on August 18 which clearly shows oil emanating from COT at Bullenbaai. Matter of fact, people have written to Smoc that on August 19 they did alert Milieudienst [environment dept], Haveninspectiedienst [harbor inspection], Amigu di Tera [friends of the earth], Carmabi [Caribbean marine biology] and "a" newspaper, with no business resulting. Haveninspectiedienst informed them they'd known about it since August 18; fishermen had reported the oil slick already. Carmabi told them this was a government matter, but LVV agriculture dept states the saliña is managed by Carmabi. So how come LVV ordered opening it up to
oil slicksthe sea, and how come it was duly opened? By whom?
Carmabi/Stinapa national parks guy Schmitz is writing reams of letters what a shame it all is; he's right there. He answers not one of these essential questions. It is a bloody shame and they're all in sauve qui peut mode.
Salliant détail: These good citizens had asked politely if they were allowed to inform the media of this.
No Corruption. The 2009 bond emission of Central Bank CSBS to Aqualectra at a value of only 80% is kosher because of the low interest, finds Algemene Rekenkamer [court of auditors]. PM Shorty and his motley crew have been yelling about this for a long time. Will they now shut up? About this, maybe. Look who's talking, anyway! They must have been jealous.
Twelve parliament members have requested the governor to "talk about" the formation of an interim cabinet. A fat lot of good. That governor hasn't even deigned to reply on a former letter (of August 3) which requested him to fire the "outgoing" cabinet.
The Horse and The Stable Door
Now it has been decided to close the connection of Jan Kock saliña, which has been heavily polluted with crude oil, with the sea. Owner Monumentenzorg [monument care] wants damage compensation by Isla refinery, who still have not published their report on the matter. They have offered their apologies, though. How touching; too bad they don't accept any responsibility.
However, nobody aks the vital question: who opened the inlet? It was closed until what must be relatively recently. With the oil terminal upwind and upstream right around the corner removing that barrier was just asking for trouble.
Then again, we understand (from a letter to the editor, for whatever that's worth) that it's Carmabi who manages the saliña, but that it's LVV dept. of agriculture who ordered the opening of the inlet. So who's in charge here? For crying out loud. For breaking out in sobs.
Guess the answer is, nobody wants to be in charge.
By the Way, That Wind Production
Only at the very best locations one can reasonably expect wind generators to average out on 70%-80% of their nominal production. The advise generally is not to consider wind energy with speeds below ~7.5m/sec. As Curaçao has an average wind of only 19.1km/hr or 6.6m/sec, that's not even marginal. The wind may well blow most of the time; it's just not strong enough.
It looks like the "experts" of Aqualectra are willingly lying to fool us (you get used to that). The expected production is not 30% less than the nominal power, it would be only 20% of that nominal power.
Sinister of injustice Wilsoen tells everybody who wants to listen (which we do) that the ministers who want "protection" will get billed from now on.
No Clients for Chávez
Just like the last time, hardly anybody has taken up the offer to get flown to Venezuela to get cataracts treated free; or flying in Venezuelan and Cuban doctors to operate here. Like eye doctor Ferwerda explains, as he says he did long ago to minister of quackery Constancia, eye care here is on an international level with as good or better results. There are 2000 operations a year here with a reasonable backlag.
He also mentions that Constancia is committing a punishable offence by allowing those foreign doctors, who lack the proper diplomas and licenses, to operate here.
Now Cft financial supervision wises up to what we knew all the time: the date of 1 September is unrealistic and maybe some items should be postponed to 1 January. Like health insurance, old age provision and dividend policy. Please! Do they really think this government of ours will have reached a solution by then?
Cft states they're quite aware that things are much worse and more urgent than they figured; so they consider a deadline postponement? For crying out loud.
Sign of Sanity
The St. Maarten government does not think firing Central Bank director Tromp will contribute to solving the problems with the bank. Curaçao government dearly wants to fire Tromp since May, when he lodged complaints for bribery and corruption against (MFK-members) PM Shorty, sheikh of stagnation el Hakim and minister of theft Imalootin.
They Ought to Know
Dutch parliamentarians (and professors) opine that a minority of our version, Staten, are entitled to organize a meeting on their own. They don't need permission of some fascist bastard. Good tip! Let's see what the opposition comes up with. And, just mentioning it in passing, couldn't a single one of these geniuses here interpret the law on their own? Independence Yesterday!
Now It's a Surplus? Not So Fast
Seems that the cabinet has really been plodding away to get their accounting in order before September 1. Alas, a leaked letter by Dutch PM Rutte makes clear that RvM and Cft have very little confidence in the results. Shorty's Gang claims there's a 2012 surplus of 45m now, after all the measures they have taken. But Cft figures the deficit over 2011 is not 156m but 180m. This year's deficit is 50m and will grow to a structural 195m deficit in 2013.
We watch future developments with profound interest.
Just One More Disaster
A saliña, inland lake with old salt ponds, of which there are several along Curaçao's South coast, was getting more and more visits by flamingos feeding in the ecologically rich area. Rif-St. Marie/Jan Kock also started growing into a attraction for tourists, who could look at them from a main road passing very close by. Some fool must have opened up the connection with the open sea of Bullenbaai where Curaçao Oil Terminal is located, through which with last week's hurricanes and changing winds a copious quantity of crude oil came in. Ruin and desolation. Smoc wonders why there is no boom to keep the oil out; would be of precious little use now.
In my youth when Isla refinery was in top production, the Rif area near Otrabanda was always black with oil; but these days this is much better under control. At Bullenbaai, where only oilies ever visit, they still seem to just slop the stuff around. The word is that there has been an oil spill in July as well.
Isla refinery director Gijsbertha declares that a tank used to separate crude oil from water "spilled over"; other sources claim some worker "forgot" to close a valve in time. PM Shorty has ordered a through investigation, how intrepid. Area inhabitants say the crud had been washing in for a week; so why didn't they call Milieudienst [environment dept.]? Answer: because you might as well call a wall.
A semi-Dutch word [dumb understand], formerly used in schools for pupils who pretended they hadn't understood something told them in Dutch, so they did something else.
Is what our politicians doing right now. Cft has told the government in the Aanwijzing there will be no more borrowing. But borrowing is necessary for that blasted new hospital. MAN Mudbelly Cooper says that Aanwijzing is about the budget, not anything else. PS Whirlywiels says the hospital is a running affair, not something new so borrowing is okay. All parties participating in the coming elections feel, for one excuse or another, that they can borrow to their hearts' content for a new hospital.
They must be even dumber than I thought, which I figured couldn't be done.
FOØL Godett reminds us that proposed builder Ballast Nedam also built the Central Bank, budgeted for ANG45m, for ANG85m, and then left debts and unpaid workers behind.
Tantalizing and Titillating... But...
During the past fortnight Edgar Leito's party MSI held a query on their Fakebooc page about the next elections. Results are most absorbing; we list the number of votes below. But first, realize that this sort of probe is very unreliable because of sampling problems; only those who visit MSI on Fakebooc and take the trouble to vote are represented. Not what you'd call "random".
FOL 3; MAN 28; MFK 11; MSI 4; Pais 61; PAN 16; PAR 77; Partido Laboral 1; PNP 12; PS 43 votes.
Never fearing to do our homework, from this it can be deduced that in our 21 seats parliament, the seats would be distributed like this:
PAR 6; Pais 5; PS 3; MAN 2; PAN 1; PNP 1; MFK 1.
Discounted are crazy rules how restzetels [one remaining seat] are divided up; they mostly result in an advantage for the biggest parties in number of seats.
Not Only The Rats Are Abandoning Ship
Yes, decent people who came here to enjoy their old age, other peoples with means are packing up and selling out to leave in droves. At least, that word goes around. Now's your chance to pick up a house or yacht, cheap. Hard to get exact figures; hey, how many rich people are there left in the first place? #OWS 1% they tell us; equals one thousand?
Coup d'état? Putsch? Whaddayamean?
Staten/parliament president Arsjes has suspended all parliament meetings until October 19. He said in so many words that this was to prevent the vote of no confidence, which he described as "an assault on democracy"—"a parliamentary coup."
Never mind the contradiction in terms, this is about as in-your-face as it can get. Just stop the democratic process and do as you like.
Question now is, what's next? We all wait like sheep for the
Fear for an act like this is exactly why the people again and again voted for remaining part of the Dutch kingdom; not, as often suggested, because of the Dutch passport. It remains to be seen what the Dutch will do about it. They would shrink back from applying power because of fanatical shrieks of "interference". But September 1 is much closer than October 19, that's for sure.
Seems there's no way to vote Arsjes out now; the law assumes that the president of parliament will be democratically inclined and never counted on this. Goes to show you the danger of assuming too much.
The protestant schools also refused their fat check for "free education" and even the public schools, run directly by the government, have queasy stomachs about the deal.
Contrary to, understandable, rumors that PM Shorty had not paid the proper fee, Transparency International do have started their inquest into Curaçao Country Island. Only thing is, they don't investigate the government, but the entire island. So far so good, that includes the government and the politicians.
So they are a few months behind schedule, and Shorty may be gone, regretted by few, before TI's report is ready. We still say "get on with it. Already!"
TI will be visiting Curaçao from 3 to 7 September.
Du merkst aber auch alles
One of my favorite quotes, from Erich Kästner: "You do notice everything, don't you?" Cft, RvM—what have you are extremely worried about Curaçao's financial position and are afraid it's even worse than the government tries to make believe. They got that straight! Come right down to it, what took 'em so long? We knew it all the time. And were worried long before that time.
Botikas: Uh Oh
The botika drugstores and importers have no idea what's going to happen. One week from now, they may be forced to sell only generic medicine. Then again, maybe not that, but instead brand medicines for an unrealistically low price. So they opt for the safe way and just hang on without ordering new stocks—even the hospital dispensary does it.
This is as good a place to tell you that, with the old boys traders' network, generic medicine here is almost as expensive as the brand version; don't make no difference, mon. FpK was complaining about the very same thing in the supermarkets, and I have done so myself; the cheapo-label brands often sell for more than the brand names. Like, from the top of my head, Maizena, DelMonte or Aunt Jemima... a long list.
I Don't Get It
RKCS catholic schools have returned a check for ANG7.1m, to pay for free education, to the minister of ignorance. Only know that he's a Wiels PS-er, may be Monky or Trinidad or entirely somebody else. Naturally, it was bomba Wiels, not the minister who "guaranteed" the parents would get their money next week anyway. He claims RKCS stick like glue to the money flowing by, and only 17 cents of every guilder is passed on to education. Yeah Wiels, that readily explains why they'd refuse a 7 million check (of which he claims they'd keep 5.8 million. If we follow him, which is pretty hard.)
For some reason, that stinker is at it again. Big black blasts of nasty crud clouds billow out. Smoc informs us that the electrostatic smoke-stack filters have been out of order for years. At least the measurements website is back on-line.
(Not Only) Hato Is in Trouble
Hato airport was the first to announce it; with all their grandiose plans it is getting harder and harder to find foreign investors.
But of course it's the same all over. Nobody in the commercial sector seems to have any confidence in the present government. That's not a new thing; Shorty and his Gang don't have exclusive rights—it has been going on for [too] many years now.
You wonder why that should be? Read on below...
Snake Oil and Lots of Gas
Big fight in Staten parliament, and they didn't even need Arsjes as president for that. He was replaced by MFK head Thodé, who (always according to the opposition) gave the coalition partners much more time to explain their position. What it was all about, why did PAR (according to MFK and PS) always deny that there was oil to be found around the island, to start preparing exploring for it anyway? (Privately, I think that's okay, why not prepare for a possibility?)
At a certain point, PAR member Alcalda-Wallé was more-or-less forcibly removed from the meeting. She didn't like that.
Just thought I'd mention it: it's still not sure at all that there is oil to be found. And it certainly looks like King Oil will be replaced by natural gas in the coming years, and the bottom already dropped out of that market. So we have to start looking for another lottery win.
No Delay for Aanwijzing
Tough for Shorty and his Gang: RvM is getting tough: as the present government is still in the saddle, there is no reason to postpone the date for the aanwijzing instructions beyond 1 September. So there.
It didn't help a bit that, the very morning before, the Curaçao delegation tried a last desperate attempt to evade that Date of Doom.
Not So Mysterious
The Fundashon pa Konsumidó has now been trying for ten years to install a "competition authority", to get more of this desirable activity. Good plan. But, for some reason, the successive governments have never done anything with it.
Well, maybe, quite possibly, not improbably, this is the reason. It's dated but the idea still holds; it holds us by the throat.
Even Lawyers Protest
The Orde van Advocaten [gang of lawyers] is proposing a law that you can't go to court without hiring a lawyer. No doubt they feel that's good for business. Once again, it took a letter-to-the-editor (by an ex-lawyer) to warn us for this. Surely would have frustrated me in my ongoing fight with the Tax Person.
The Tax Bastards
I receive an AOW old age pension from Holland, over which I pay income tax in Holland. Curaçao and Holland have signed an agreement so that you won't have to pay twice. So the Tax Bastards tried anyway to make me pay again over 2010, 2011 and (in advance, please) 2012. I protested against that and the Bastards refused... had to pay anyway. So I went to court, De Raad van Beroep voor Belastingzaken over 2010 and 2011 (could find my way there blindfolded by now); whereupon within two weeks I received a letter remitting 2012. They can't very well do that over the other two years as they've been submitted to the Court already.
Point is, what bastards. They willingly fornicate you knowing perfectly well they're not allowed to.
Other point is, the amount I would have to pay here is about ten times what I paid in Holland. So much for our "tax paradise".
Stretch Hummer Hire
This afternoon encountered a huge limousine-type Hummer, yessirree. Black, as a gangsta heap should be: a fine tradition. Reminds you of a pit-bull, doesn't it—aggressive as hell. No doubt containing one or more of our government bosses. Now, as far as I know a regular Hummer cost ~ANG150K (GM stopped building the beasts in 2010 after finding no
suckerstakers for the line). What do you think for this mongrel? Twice that? Easy! Small wonder PM Shorty won't buy a plebeian Chevy Volt for a mere 100k; far below his rank.
"Wind generator builder Vestas is cutting [another] 1400 jobs." [news item]
Yes, the very place where "ours" came from. Next, we'll have to find spare parts somewhere—in China, maybe?
Just a Rumor!
Don't go and believe it without further confirmation—even if I do so.
The rumor is that Spanish PV-panel manufacturer Assyce Fotovoltaico of Spain has bribed PM MFK Shorty, MAN Mudbelly Cooper and Werner Wiels. Shorty and Cooper have received cash, but PS Wiels has forbidden Werner, his brother, to accept money; so Wiels is now blackmailing Shorty and Mudbelly.
Sounds all too possible, even highly probable. To quote my own line at that time: "how much is Shorty making on this deal?" First ornery question coming up in what I use for a brain: hey, think they'd have to pay back, as it doesn't go through? Guess it's hard for those Spaniards to sue, always a problem with those illicit deals.
No New Houses
The 10-10-10 coalition, in other words Shorty and His Crooks, in other words MAN Mudbelly Cooper, have not built one single new FKP [public housing] dwelling. Notwithstanding the 5 cents per liter of gasoline we pay to
Shortyuh... Vanddisuh... for "barrio improvement".
Meanwhile, illegal building is exploding.
Can't Have That! May Backfire
MFK sinister of lawlessness, Wilsoen the Letter-Writer, does not want to publish a Special Detection Powers law, which has been accepted long since. It would enable Those in Power to tap phones and more in that vein, and Wilsoen feels this would violate citizens' privacy.
And also that of Those in Power, don't forget. Wilsoen doesn't forget.
Must be revenge, especially knowing PS Wiels: he has lodged a complaint against the RKCS catholic schools because they made parents of pupils at one school pay ANG1700 for a CD containing the ripped contents of three copyright books. The same school only admitted pupils after parents had paid school fees. The complaint mentions "possible scamming, violation of fundamental child's rights following Esocal treaty and violation of the international treaty for the rights of the child."
While I don't think Wiels has a valid case when he sues for infringement of other parties' copyright, it has admittedly been habitual for at least decennia for not only our schools to xerox copies for use by their pupils without giving a thought to copyright; this has grown much worse since the digital age and internet. You can find ripped-off photographs and texts of mine all over the net, and education and religion are the worst offenders. Some "vocations" those are.
Bank of Thieves
50 million plaka
"plaka" was 2½ cents, word stood for "money"
Took Them a While
Newspaper Antilliaans Dagblad confirms what we let you know a long time ago: CDM Curaçao Dok, notwithstanding MFK sheik el Hakim's lies, is not at all out of the red, but owes 35 million guilders (USD20M) to Curaçao Port Authority. According to the so-called Termination Agreement, until now never even mentioned by anybody involved, CDM is supposed to pay that total amount at once, "which of course is impossible".
As regards CDM and the Cuban slaves, it certainly ain't necessarily so that CDM/government do not have to pay the Cubans USD80m, as was stated in a February RNC-Caribiana article. The matter is still in US federal court. Compared with that amount, CDM's debt to CAP is peanut butter.
Setback for Quack
Staten parliament does not accept the 12% premium for health insurance as proposed by the cabinet. Even MAN and PS, coalition partners, thought this a too heavy load for penshonados and married couples where both partners would have to pay. Opposition members wondered why, in that case, they had allowed the proposal to reach parliament at all. A real setback for minister of quackery Constancia, especially in connection with her stubborn pressing on with her new hospital.
Curaçao's financial situation is so precarious that, as from now, the RvM ministers' council will meet twice as often as customary. We congratulate Shorty and his Gang on this great achievement, even if they would modestly deny it.
Before I forget, the intended splitting up of the Central Bank has been declared illegal, so they know where they can shove it.
Better check Aqualectra
Aqualectra will check for illegal water use. Newspaper Antilliaans Dagblad cites several neighborhoods where this will take place, but make a long story short: it's all over.
Their Reverse Osmosis plant at Fuik seems to be giving trouble. Weird organisms, gaseous bubbles and dead parrot fish boil up to the surface when the leaky brine pipes are flushed. It's all pooh-poohed, but we're used to that (tough if you're a parrot fish). Leaky pipes, already? That plant dates from after 2005! Spells well for our wind generators.
Carmabi marine biologists say it's just a vent leaking air, but omit to explain what price the parrot fish.
It's OK To Offend a Man
Without mentioning the name Wiels, Shorty's MFK party states that they deplore "somebody" has been giving offense to a
femaleperson. Presumably, MFK feels it's okay to offend a mere male. In that case: Shorty and all his (male) cohorts are loathsome, putrid, lying, stealing and fibbing scoundrels. And ugly, as well. Take that!
Guess That Won't Work
Fundashon Akshon Sivíl "championing the collective interests of the Curaçao people" has asked Curoil and Refinería di Kòrsou (RdK) for an inspection of their yearly accounts. Both government-owned companies have an obligation to present a yearly account after six months, eventually prolonged to twelve, which should be accessible to the public. But RdK has never done so, and Curoil not since 2009.
Bank of Bothers
Sinister of theft MFK Imalooting is threatening everybody in the bank and of the St. Maarten government to sue them and throw the whole bunch in jail. If I get it right, they all agreed not to discuss certain subjects during their meeting, which, he says, is contrary to article 325.37 paragraph 0.28 section 14-6. Or something.
They don't seem to be worrying much.
Government Rekenkamer [accounting] holds it's all pretty vague what the rights of the bank and its commissioners are. They have investigated, but that was difficult because they didn't get info from the Bank, from the minister and from his highest official.
They wised up: no separate central banks, but of course PM Shorty had to say "maybe in the future." And maybe no Shorty in the future.
Some SlackWiels Raves, Rants and Rails
Picking it up from the 14th. We're rebuilding (illegally of course) our HQ
such a lot of dust!
PS bomba Whirlywiels has given the RKCS catholic schools 24 hours to introduce free education. But they're not having any before they get a guarantee for the full amount; right now they have received only 70%.
With Wiels whirring in front "they're going to kick down the doors and occupy the office, and drag the director by her hair out the back door." Another brownshirts Sturm Abwehr Nazi-like act. He may only be dreaming, but that's the stuff of his dreams.
Why the back door? Hey, ask Wiels.
Wiels does not shrink from vilifying RKCS Van Lamoen-Garmers in his radio show: "An ornery fishwife", "a pig". Just asking for a snappy come-back, isn't he? But as we're civilized let's just say he appears non compos mentis; or in layman's terms, well fitting in our political "system", bananas. Wish he'd go off our rock, instead.
The director has lodged a complaint against Wiels.
Another item of interest is that sinistry of education (that would be Monky) secretary-general Westerveld has been denied admittance to her job. Reason: she dared doubt the free education financing.
Will It Work?
The protest against the aanwijzing cannot be discussed and decided upon before next week; by what you can't possibly call a coïncidence, the last RvM meeting before the 1 September date when MFK thinister of seft Imalooting should come up with a new budget. He has announced that's impossible; for him, no doubt, it is.
More news: some *$$ had the protest delivered at the wrong address; more delay. You never know with these guys if it's sheer stupidity or purposeful stalling.
Try And Try Again
Now Shorty and his Gang have offered VDC Gumbs an honorable dismissal; he only has to accept it in seven days. But will he?
They have fired him before, three times, all turned around in court and he was then refused admittance to his office. A well-timed effort this time, admittedly.
It Revolves Round Rozier
The Vote of No Confidence, in Staten/parliament next week, may not get a majority as Cleopa will probably vote against. If Rozier turns up to vote and votes for, it may get a majority yet. If.
PAIS poltroon Rosaria tells us his party would vote against. They would rather look at every minister in person than fire the entire cabinet. [Rhetorical question:] Rosaria, please tell us which minister[s] of that lot would you consider worth keeping?
Bad Luck for Jellinek
Dutch insurance company DSW refuses to pay rich junkies' fees to kick off at the expensive Jellinek Curaçao clinic, another Jacob Geltdekker venture.
Comments one of the DSW guys: "More and more clinics are run by ex-addicts. They seem to feel experience counts for more than qualifications."
making the roundsPAR Publishes Propaganda Promotion Promises
don't know who designed it, sorry
A list of ten points they want to realize and base their campaign on. Highlights:
OB sales tax back from 6% to 5%; too bad if you smoke or drink because that will cost more.
A fund to subsidize school for children whose parents earn less than ANG4000/month.
Bus drivers can buy fuel without OB/sales tax so bus tariffs can remain low.
The five cents gas supercharge for "barrio improvement" will be deleted.
"Nobody knows where that money's going to." Maybe not for sure, but we have our ideas.
Another location for the New Hospital.
Water subsidy for disadvantaged groups plus social support so they won't get cut off.
Lie on, Shorty, Shorty Lie on...
PM MFK Shorty is in denial. He keeps saying that attorney general Piar has seen the MOT declarations and advised there has been no criminal activity on Shorty's part. But the MOT statements only became public after MOT had advised the governor. Will we see about that?
Used To Be Frigidèls
It was a generally accepted, if not well-documented fact that in the good old times, say in the 1950s, political parties gave away Frigidèls [Frigidaires, generic name for icebox, like Kodak for camera] to voters. Now, how the mighty have fallen, MFK Thodé strongly denies they are giving away Blackberries. I'd prefer a Frigidèl anyway.
It's Our Culture
Civil servants union ABVO accuses management of Rosalia's estate Kas di Kultura of theft, and have gone to court. Some workers allegedly have not received what they're supposed to get. Half of the workers has gone on strike (I honestly didn't notice any difference.)
Budget Still More Deficient
More and more cases just keep popping up. Now it's FKP [public housing] who are worried because there's no money (13.2m guilders) for rent subsidy in the 2013 budget.
Yes, Virginia, there is a new party PKU, consisting of PAIS. Frente Sivíl and Korsou Uni. Surprise head is central bank director Emsley Tromp (who may be fired soon.) PUK would start an alliance with PAR and PNP; all this according to newspaper Extra.
But PAIS Rosaria flatly denies it.
New Round of Rumors
Ex-MAN Cleopa (now with PAIS party) is supposed to have been bribed for ANG500,000 and ex-MFK Rozier for 1.2 million to become ex; by a businessman. That has at least been published by newspaper Vigilante; however, the only proof it shows is a photo of one standing by a car with the other one supposedly inside, on the parking place of a bank. Pretty weak, that.
The island is alive with buzzes, and rumors are
rotten ripe(forget me own name next) rife about new parties. There's one supposedly called PKU (Pais Korsou Uni: consisting of PAR, PNP and Pais Korsou) but these are all in denial. Then Steven Martina, Son of MAN's Don, is alleged to be working on one as well. That one should include PAR Rhuggenaath and MAN's Cleopa. They must be getting desperate. So are we by now. Like I said before, all the same old tired faces.
Later, Rhuggenaath and Martina announced they wouldn't partake; and Cleopa joined PAIS.
It Worked for Isla, Let's Try It Here As Well
The delaying tactics applied by the government and the refinery in the lawsuits by SMOC have now been applied to the aanwijzing. The protest they have been talking about all the time is now ready and will be presented on August 24; leaving one week before that magic 1 September date when the RvM ministers' council will check on the fulfillment of their demands.
Really am curious if this will work here.
PM Shorty has promised that he will not lie to the voters. Not even pathologically.
If you believe that, you deserve what you get, with interest (and don't doubt it—you'll get it, too).
PG/attorney general Piar has, this time, for once, replied to Akshon Sivíl's petition that, if he finds PM Shorty has committed punishable offences, he will not refrain from persecuting him.
Why did he wait for Akshon Sivíl, then?
Bread and Games
Not sure about the bread, but plenty of games. PM Shorty has started the election campaign with a two-band concert, yelling that he feels along with us and wants to show the world out there that Curaçao is the best place in the whole wide world. Better show us, Shorty.
Meanwhile, he states they are "working hard" on the barrio plan and matter of fact, they have already renovated one (1) community center. Want to bet the concert cost more?
He's Had Enough
Ex-MFK Rozier is getting out of politics altogether. Just like us all, he's disgusted. What took him so long?
He may make a come-back when he finds people with the same vision he has. Good luck, Rozier.
We Told You So
Again and again.
On our neighbor island to the East, Bonaire, electricity tariffs will be have to raised by at least fifty percent (50%), because the price of wind generated power is much higher than had been expected.
Holland has guaranteed that electricity would remain affordable for Bonaire. Not a peep out of them. Ho hum, what else is new?
Now wait and see when (not if) prices here have to go waaaay up.
Botikas Act Up
The botikas want their money over March-May; if SVB and the government haven't paid by September 1 (that date again) everybody, insured or not, must pay themselves. Don't worry (oh no, nothing to worry about): SVB may be in trouble, but the government is flush. They say.
Seems to have worked. Even on a sleepy Saturday, ministry of quackery has declared that all bills will be paid before that date. Don't hold you breath, though, especially when you have pulmonary problems. Get those recipes filled out before then! They have lied before and, just possibly maybe, may do so again.
You Can Always Hope
Sure, politicians always exaggerate, but when PS claims they expect twice as many votes and thus seats as now (four), what to think? It doesn't agree with that one poll we've seen, but **it does happen.
That Would Be Nice
Seems it's possible to put cabinet members, ministers, who do not follow up on a parliament vote of no confidence (effectively meaning: Go Home Now) in jail for three years; or she/he/it [sheeeeit] a "fine of the fourth category" whatever that means; probably they don't mention an amount anymore but made the whole thing inflation resistant.
Clepoa Leaves MAN
Finally Cleopa announced he's leaving MAN as a party member. Rozier still maintains he's a member of MFK.
MOT versus OM Catfight
MOT [declaration point unusual transactions] denies they ever approached OM [prosecutor] with 34 items about PM Shorty, as has been published by Korant Independiente. MOT Dambruck says it's a big lie: he never went to OM and never talked there with an officer who's supposed to be gone now, and if that info comes from OM, OM is lying. OM's come-back is that Dambruck did talk to them.
PAR proposes that the interim cabinet (if and when) should arrange for one, in the hope that problems we have now can be avoided in the future.
A newspaper has published that George Elias was the guy trying to bribe MFK Pisas. But Elias says he never even heard of Pisas. Only problem here is, why doesn't Pisas come out and deny it himself?
No Pressure for Petition
The diving schools have gotten "some tens of signatures" together for their decompression tank petition. Some seem to be afraid they will lose their license if they act up. Critics ask why those schools didn't just get together long since and set up their own tank? After all, it's the divers who choose to run the risk to get the bends.
Rumors persist that PM Shorty and/or Quackie Constancia somehow made good money on that tank.
But now Sehos refuses to sign the working agreement because it would mean an independent entity in their hospital.
KdK Keeps Rumbling
PAR complains Kas di Kultura, even though Rosalia has gone, is still a mess of strife and trouble. The people there keep hiding behind some audit nobody but (maybe) they has seen. Then, in spite of all PS WhirleyWiels's yelling, there's no money for the Tula tribute, but ANG50k/month is thrown away on closing down the road through Schottegat so some people can picnic there.
That explains why, for the first time in 26 years, there is no subsidy for the commemoration of Tula's 1795 slave revolt, even though the coffers are awash with cash. Got it? The commemoration is "all about the essence of the message of freedom and awakening." We get the message.
Cat Cracker No, Stench Si
Once again the start-up of the Isla refinery cat cracker has been postponed, as everybody in the know predicted. Doesn't matter, they have plenty of money.
It was supposed to take six weeks from April 12. Make it easy for you: it's been four months now.
In Dutch a "blue eye": first it turns blue fast, then gradually yellow. Like the colors of our proud flag.
Frente Sivíl plans to write a letter to the governor, asking him to permit formation of an interim cabinet that guarantees re-installment of Veiligheidsdienst Curaçao VDC security.
Frente Sivíl also casts a jaundiced eye at the PS manipulations at Kranshi civil registration (which also carries responsibility for the elections) where "distrust and corruption thrive".
Vote of No Confidence
1 - There will be a parliament meeting on August 20
2 - Arsjes, much against his inclinations, will deliver that vote to the PM
3 - PM Shorty states that as parliament has been disbanded he will not accept the vote
4 - New elections may be canceled and an interim cabinet will then stay on for two years
until regular elections are due. As far as we understand the law, parliament, even if dissolved, remains in power until there is a new parliament; so what Shorty and his Gang are doing can only be defined as an illegal, undemocratic power grab: a coup d'état; a Hitler-like Putsch.
Tale of Woe
The 2011 yearly account of SVB social security bank is ready: total deficit is almost ANG 200 million (USD110m). Put that in your pipe and smoke it, Quackie. Packs a heavier wallop than crack but results in no rush.
He Sure Fooled Us All
Sinister of theft MFK Imalooting stands up and assures us all that the financial position of the country is "safe, sane and fine". There's 300 million in the coffers to spend so what's all the fuss about?
Bridges Breaking Down
Just like our government. Reading about all those bridges in the USA falling down a few years ago had us wondering about ours—with good reason. Tourist-attracting Emmabrug, a wooden pontoon bridge which after a century of service was rebuilt six years ago, now is rotting already. Much more dangerous is the Julianabrug spanning the harbor, which should have had new asphalt several times already, has only been painted. Blue and yellow, you guessed it: hail the flag!
Nobody at MAN Mudbelly Cooper's civil engineering dept. can give any info on the state of maintenance. You have to admit they are consequent.
Julianabridge, dating from the late 1960s, collapsed when construction was resumed after having been stopped for a year, killing more than ten workers.
We'd All Like to Know
PAR puts some good questions, even if we could think of better ones, easy.
First, they'd like to know about the VDC Security. Like
mostmany of us. What's going on? Have those guys been sitting there twiddling their thumbs for three months, at an ill-paid salary or what? (maybe they went out fishing, that's good! Relaxing and) good pay.
Next question, hey, what's all this crazy moonbatsh*t about free education? "I wish I could see what's going on" to quote Fat Freddy's Cat. Yeah, good question. No use wondering if they'll get a reply.
How Like Him
What is there to like about Arsjes? You got me there, but the answer surely is shorter than to "what's there not to like about Arsjes?" Now he's working on a law to prevent guys like ex-MAN Cleopa (336 votes) and ex(?)-MFK Rozier (209 votes) "taking over democracy".
Say, hey, Arsjes, just between you and me, I won't let it get any further—how many votes did you get? Huh?
Don't know if it's Amigoe newspaper to blame, but they write that Arsjes viewpoint "leaves little to indistinctness". Something in that, I suppose; come right down to it.
Lawyer Frielink writes on Fakebooc that Arsjes ought to follow a 101 constitutional law course. I shouldn't wonder Frielink's right. Hey, "Frielink"—good name for the TripleDoubleYou, that!
Don't Think So
Hitzig Basur, not by any measure the dumbest of regular letters-to-ye-editor writers, comes out with several pretty good proposals, one of which is referenda to kick the PM out. He immediately adds that the politicians wouldn't like it; there we go Bazur.
By a coïncidence I stumbled over the Swiss constitution. It's compact and to the point and just great for us: to start with, they have four languages and never a quarreling word. Right Bazur, they just love referenda.
Not to mention the Swiss have a great banking system and mostly produce services. I give you the Swiss Army knife, goat cheese and some other things. Like tourism.Of course, naturally, we couldn't use it just like that. They're landlocked and we're on an island.
But we, Bazur, you and me and all the rest, know that indeed, the politicians won't go for it. What say let's drown 'em in the Schottegat! Or maybe, to keep stylishly in style, off-shore? Get it, fans? "Deep waters, Jeeves."
New elections on October 19. That's a Friday, Folks. Write it down in your little black book. May well be our, yours and mine, last chance. Let's try not to make it it's not going to be a Black Friday. Hey, get me right—no Racist Pun intended!
St. Maarten has given up on getting a response from the Curaçao government and is preparing to start its own Central Bank. Wise guys. But it will cost both parties money, for sure. Thanks Shorty, we have gotten used to that long since.
One More Volt Sold
The first (and might well be last) Chevrolet Volt arrived on Curaçao. That makes a difference you wouldn't believe to General Motors, who have sold a Grand Total of 7671 in all of 2011, 1/4 under expectations. Of course PM Shorty was there for the photo op; the more so as he has great plans for electric cars on the island.
If these dreams will come true is another matter. As far as is known he didn't even offer to buy this lone Volt. Besides, where to charge it (and would you get Fun Miles?) For once, Shorty is smart. Guess his father-in-common-law wouldn't like it much either.
Bottom line: Does the beast come sales-point subsidized by the American taxpayer, as in the USA, or would we have to pay the full price? Makes a USD7500/ANG13650 difference; counting import duty and all, you can almost buy a Chevrolet Spark for that.
Don't We All Know It
PS Arsjes warns that when the next staten meeting accepts a vote of no confidence, it is up to the cabinet to follow up on it; they may well choose to ignore it.
Technically, Arsjes is right but such a thing occurs very rarely and is the last way corrupt, putrid and noxious regimes can keep hanging on. So there you have it, no crystal ball needed. Even Arsjes sees it coming; but of course, he wouldn't mind.
Don't you wish as well somebody could, or would, tell us if we have a government and/or a parliament? One does get confused.
Where Did It Go?
One of Quacky Constancia's problems is that AVBZ (to keep it simple, health insurance) has to be arranged muy pronto as stipulated by that horrid aanwijzing. Figures she'd rather plot and plan on the new hospital; there's money in them thar hospitals! Anyway, the 2005 minister of health installed a committee AVBZ that was supposed to produce a note exploring costs and resources. That note has never been produced.
Gee, I wonder how much they paid those committee members.
To brush up on history, that would have been under PAR PM IJs.
An Old Tactic
And it's even getting older all the time. August 24 is the deadline for Curaçao and St. Maarten to decided on the joint Central Bank. While St. Maarten is still working on that, they do not get any response from our government. They hope, I guess, that the can of worms will keep its lid on when they act as if it's not there. Their problem, of course, is with bank director Tromp who doesn't let 'em play freely with our money.
Finally, there seems to be a meeting between St. Maarten and Curaçao, on August 18.
FOØl Godett prefers not to believe the poll foretelling he's out of the political game after next elections. The people have always voted for him, he claims, except in 2010; but that was election fraud. Sure... sure... That was when his party illegally painted the island orange all over.
Elections Coming Up!
If you can believe the street interviews in the media (which we don't) the problem for most voters is the same as ours: there is no good party to vote for. Many are said to say they'd vote for a new party; yeah, with the same tired old faces?
All those guys just keep playing musical chairs; if they don't stick to the same party they just haul ass to another one. Us voting cattle have precious little choice. That's democracy!
Constancia's Competence, Divers Disgusted
Venzuela has given Curaçao a decompression tank for divers whith the bends (by coming back up too fast). It arrived in March. Minister of quackery Constancia promised it would be available in September, but after a diver died in May this was advanced to June, postponed again to July 1. It was officially opened, finally, on July 27. But that was just a photo-op for Shorty and Quacky: when a diver got the bends last week, it turned out there was no working tank! Reason, there is no specialist who can work the thing.
Divers now have started a petition action to have the machine working in September. That month seems to become what's fashionably called "crucial". Will Shorty and Quacky still be around by then?
FATF Financial Action Task Force during their June meeting in Roma, Italia had three worrisome countries on their agenda: Spain, Pakistan and Curaçao. Spain and Pakistan are OK now, but Curaçao still is a headache with respect to drugs, human trafficking and money laundering. Terrorism (Jihad) financing is possible, and FARC (Columbia "liberation" army, run by drug barons) related matters cannot be not ruled out. It's all controlled by sinister of injustice Wilsoen, need we say more?
There is no supervision at all of the many internet casinos based on Curaçao. The thirteen "live" casinos, as far as FATF knows only operating in hotels with over 150 beds, made a 2010 profit of over ANG100m (USD55m), of which 37.5% goes to the Gaming Control Board. That GBC seems to decide for themselves what to do with the money.
But sinister of theft Imalooting ended the 150-beds rule, so only the devil knows what's going on now. It can only have grown worse.
[From yet another letter by a citizen who beat the newspapers to it.]
No Reason; Does Not Even Rhyme
PAR has asked PS Arsjes for a Staten/parliament meeting to discuss the free education situation. Nobody knows where they're at, parents, schools, pupils (their last worry, granted). But we thought there was no parliament, so how could it possibly meet?
No matter. The school managements have received a RdK check covering 70% of costs today. Van der Dijs explains it's an advance, later to be settled with the distribution of dividend. What it is, is what the French call un fait accompli. Now the schools wait for the other 30%, and Cft waits for a further explanation.
He Signed It?!
The governor seems to have signed the landsbesluit by which parliament has been disbanded. One searches in vain for a motivation. But it stills seems "not to be impossible" to reverse the decision, lawyers state. There it starts... or rather, continues to thicken the soup.
Budget Still Later
Minister of theft Imalooting has written a letter to parliament that the second supplementary budget will not reach the Staten on August 15; it will become September 18. The guys really act like there's no aanwijzing at all.
By September 18, they may all have disappeared with their
tailsbudget between... uh... let it go. And what's the use in the first place with Staten disbanded? By the way, the next RvM meeting is August 24.
The 2013 budget will be ready by September 30, Imalooting says. So soon? Small wonder Cft feels that's "pretty ambitious".
Three Weeks to Go
All this brouhaha around PM Shorty's Gang and their power games should then be cut short by the RvM. Sure, just a promise, a straw to clutch at—but we're going under, fast.
The terrain that CDM (maybe) transferred to CPA (surely) resulted in a loss for CPA. CPA was supposed to be paid rent, what they got is real estate. So much once again for sheikh el Hakim's bragging. Just moving money from one sinkhole to another.
Arsjes Shows His True Colors
All of a sudden, just a few hours before it was planned, the next Staten/parliament was called off; just like that. As parliament has been disbanded, it cannot act; at least, that's chairman PS Arsjes "reasoning". Obviously, he wants to protect his bomba Wiels and enable their party sinisters to hold on to their seats and prevent what PM Shorty deigns to call a "coup".
It rather looks like the other way around.
Dark & Dry
Now it's the water: because of the difficulties with power production last week, two units could not be started and we confidently expect a shortage of water soon. Please don't brush your teeth, refrain from bathing and follow your Leaders' example: drink rum or whiskey only.
PM Shorty has really gone: Monday morning at 10:00 he resigned. Wanna bet the governor will accept?
PAR is still working on getting a vote of no confidence through parliament, but that looks superfluous. Just a lot of who-needs-it un-work. Their idea now is, have an interim cabinet consisting of just a few ministers from PAR, PNP, ex-MAN Cleopa... and FOL. You read that right. But according to legal state expert Boersema this is impossible, as parliament has been disbanded. What a mess, let the lawyers fight it out and I hope it gives 'em all migraine headaches.
But it's not true MAN leader van der Meent and Mudbelly Cooper are fighting. At least, that's what they say. Good to know, I was really getting anguished.
RdK Isla Refinery was ready and willing to help friends out by lending PS Monky's ministry of ignorance ANG17m for free education (out of non-existing funds). Isla states it would be paid back in three months, and Extra newspaper even mentioned only one month. Oswald van der Dijs told us all that, need we say more? Akshon Sivíl is working to stop this, as it's beyond the statutory limitations of the company. But the Dutch government has also indicated that it's a no-no in the terms of that ornery aanwijzing.
Curious? We Too
MFK Pisas has told PG/attorney general Piar the name[s] of the guy[s] who offered him bribes, but "pending investigations" as the cliché goes he won't tell us. Well, he waited for the devil knows how long (hoping for a better offer? a real confidence builder, that) so we can wait for two more weeks.
Maybe Legal, But Not Legit
PS WhirlyWiels in his nightly fulminations has now been shrieking that there should be a national boycott on Kortijn ice (where ex-MFK Rozier is manager); instead we should buy Lovers (which is owned by PS sinister Monky). I don't know if this is actually punishable by law, but it certainly is over the red line.
A tip from an Arubiano. Yes, they're sitting up and taking note there, while Holland's media yawn on.
The mess our government is in will not be resolved in a jiffy, but that is exactly what we need. Shorty and his Gang may have disbanded parliament, but parliament is working on a vote of no confidence. There is a much better chance than a week ago that this will be accepted. Question is: So what then? Do we have to go to court? Will the governor call the cops? Will Holland send the marines (they're already here)? Because one thing you can be sure of, those guys will have to be dragged out kicking and screaming, and frothing at the mouth.
No matter what, that trick of disbanding parliament does not work as parliament will remain in function until the next elections. Legally, that is. But coups d'état have this deplorable habit of not keeping to the law.
Parliament expects a majority 12-9 for their vote.
Just Like We Figured
Minister of quackery Constancia sure is in an awful hurry to get that new hospital built. It would be slander to say that it will pay her pots of pretty private pennies; I have no proof, just let's say, misgivings.
Especially since contractor Ballast Nedam, who assured builder Sona that they would be good boys, have again been accused of fraud (in connection with the Amsterdam Schiphol airport tunnel). They just don't seem to be able to do an honest job.
One Plant Short
Utility Aqualectra tells us via Antillliaans Dagblad that building of a new 42MW plant at Bullenbaai (the location of Curaçao Oil Terminal) has been stopped by Shorty. Matter of fact, PAR didn't get it off the ground either because bankers wanted guarantees that tariffs could be
We also find the following interesting quote. Expectations for the wind generators were too high: "You must always take 30% lower capacity into account." I have been telling them so since way back when. Guess I can now apply for a job as a commissioner; I've certainly shown to know more about it than the sorry lot they have now (it was easy).
Please note that they have 25 years of experience with those things and now they come and tell us this. They certainly did not refer to it in the lying green-is-great propaganda leaflet they distributed house to house last year.
Held for Radio Nederland Wereldomroep by Curconsult. Sample size is only 408. 31% would still vote for Shorty's MFK; 10% more than in 2010. PAR would get 28.5%, down from 30. PS would get the same 19%, MAN down to 6 from 9, PNP and FOL are out of the game with 3% each and the rest is nowhere.
Most voters are dissatisfied with the present government and ~75% want new elections, but do not want PAR back either. This can get fascinating, the more so because 51% of all interviewees say they don't know yet.
No, never fear, not in the legalistic sense. But just discovered there are people assuming I have access to the wings of parliament and the whispered secret off-the-record dirty exchanges there. Not so. I merely read the (on-line) newspapers and draw my conclusions. With a little welcome help from my friends out there, many of whom I never met.
Thank you ever so much and keep those tips coming! Do you hear me?
Stichting Monumentenzorg [foundation monument care] announces that the government is running behind in payment of rents for about ANG 1 million. That's for Kranshi civil registration, two police stations... Six months' worth. Does Cft know about this?
The way it looks now, we may still be stuck with Shorty's Gang until November 2. MAN Mudbelly Cooper and MFK PM Shorty are screaming that we need a "stable government" (like we had for the past two years, I guess) and that any transitional cabinet would take away the people's voting rights. Hey, don't ask me to explain this or the next sentence:
The PM disbands parliament to prevent it firing his cabinet, because that would corrode democracy. Guess he doesn't understand that parliament represents the people - "Volksvertegenwoordiging". Worst of this filthy trick is, they can do what they want now free fom any Staten/parliament control, having put 'em in the what soccer lingo calls off-side position.
PAR has written governor Goedgedrag that they are ready to take over with a "minimum" majority of 11 of the 21 parliament total. Presumably that's PAR 8, ex-MAN 1, FOL 1, PNP 1. Ex-MFK Rozier is still on his own and reportedly working on a business cabinet consisting of "experts".
On the other hand, Shorty may lose his power on September 1 anyway. Grab on, Shorty... Shorty, grab on... While your chance lasts.
Parliament has been disbanded, sounds like a good word to describe it. Again, Arsjes has to look for a new job as from November 2. For us, the more important upshot is new elections on October 19th with a new parliament following. Shorty and his Gang hope they can go on
stealingleading until then.
The catch, for Shorty, is the governor has to sign the Landsbesluit [country's decision] and if he sees through the trick, maybe he won't sign—leaving the power with the parliament.
Insanity at Isla
While the Isla reserves seem to have been depleted, the refinery still can spare money to support ex-PM Shorty's barrio plans, with eight projects in five neighborhoods (but none in Wishi-Marchena right under its filthy smoke).
Sure, Shorty resigned, it's all official now. That's something. But who want to pick up where he left? PAR, PNP, ex-MAN Cleopa in a new crew with that scoundrel Godett who tried to keep Shorty's Gang in the saddle.
The (how the mighty have fallen) cabinet has announced new elections before October 19, but parliament is against (that would be PAR, PNP, ex-MAN Cleopa with that scoundrel Godett).
Meanwhile, governor Goedgedrag is still "considering" Shorty's resigning.
Hey Wiels, now that your "free education" fell through (you promised, remember?) and several other things, how about making good on this one: having Shorty arrested when he left the governor's palace, and minister of theft Imalootin as well.
And if you don't, please shut up. You know what? Shut up anyway.
Pabien! Congratulations! Proficiat!
fattened hog, very well done
a friend tells me it should be a pastechi, is what they let us have all the time
(you never really know what's in that patty before you take a bite)
but sorry, Alex! a pastechi can be delicious, while this...
It really seems final now. Shorty has announced he and his cabinet will resign. There's not bloody much else he can do with Rozier pulling the PM's chair out from under him. Even Godett can't help him there.
Question is, what happens next? If Shorty really resigns, don't trust him for 0.1 degree Kelvin, PAR wants a new government, just as weak as the former one with 1 majority seat in parliament. Many of us voting cattle prefer new elections. Disadvantage is that Shorty's Gang of Crooks may then hold on to power for, oh, maybe six long months more. PS Wiels wants elections "immediately" but that just can't be done. (Ponder and wonder: would Wiels win?)
Quack Constancia Can't Make It and Can't Read, Either
A basisregeling [base arrangement] for pensions was supposed to be ready on May 1, and later postponed to June 1. Now the final date is September 1 because of that aanwijzing, but that stubborn ass maintains that it's not feasible, and that she has been given time to the end of the year anyway. Guess she can't read or understand what she reads.
An Alternative to Free Education
That's an easy one: paid education. Apart from the fact that sinister Monky fell from his tree with the rest of the Bandar-log, there's no money anyway so things just continue as they were; that's the "alternative" Monky has to offer. Which probably means the schools are in deep uh... trouble.
Just One Thing after Another, huh Shorty?
Now it's the Aqualectra unions who have gone to court, lodging a complaint against Shorty and the Council of Commissioners. They want Shorty's voting right retracted and the commissioners kicked out and replaced with guys who actually know something about the utility business. Good news is, the PV-deal is off.
Over One Million Visitors
In the month of July 2012 we passed the Magic Million Mark
No doubt "thanks" to Shorty and his Criminally Clownish Capers
On August 1, visitors from the Netherlands Antilles surpassed them all
jumped up from 25% to 35%
Minister of quackery Constancia (muleheaded pig sounds fine as well) has announced Ballast Nedam will build
ourher precious new hospital. Agreements will be signed two months from now; probably, hopefully, not by her. Location is what we all (we can be stubborn just as well) keep calling the Amstel terrain, let Shorty say what he wants. Price $108 million, ANG195m; supposed to be ready in 2015.
Only one slight problem: Financing has to be done by Curaçao government, which has spent all
itsour money and then some, and is not allowed to borrow any. So there.
PM Shorty Hangs On
Not by his neck... by his fingernails. FOØL Godett has promised him support as long as he needs it (no doubt for a price), but PAR is busy negotiating with him as well as with PNP and Cleopa. (Still MFK) Rosier will not support any new coalition unless it's his preferred "business cabinet." Is what he says for now.
Between you and me, I would just hate to take over at this point!
For Old Time's Sake
Right after the first referendum, way back when, politicians were in a state of panic and could agree on even less than usual. As long as there's talk of a business cabinet now, why not have Jandi Paula take over temporarily, just like then? Worked like a charm. We were all happy to have a cool reasonable man at the top, for a change.
Of course, highly amusing about this suggestion is to me that Jandi Paula once more would take over the job of Peter Stuijvesant as 'regent' of Curaçao.
Gone... Not Yet
Seems obvious PM Shorty is leaving no stone unexplored nor avenue unturned to hang on. Speculations on how he might try to get around the governor pop up: he still has not officially taken his leave.
Meanwhile, could be that more MFK members join Rozier, who says he's not leaving the party, just retracting his support for the coalition. He is just as disgusted by PS Wiels and Asjes as we are.
Hey, here's an idea; as long as PAR is rumored already to hold meetings about a new government, why talk with that wind-vane Godett at all? Gives you a bad name, PAR! Seems much smarter to try and deal with Rozier and Cleopa, who at least have shown some decency.
Shorty Is in Trouble!
Yes'm, there's a'trouble brewin'. Now Akshon Sivíl has gone to the Ombudsperson with a list of misdeeds. The man can only be called a criminal (as if we didn't know). It may be water under the bridge by now, I still hope they catch him for tarring and feathering.
The document is replete with interest, as the saying goes. Fascinating! To begin with, that Grim Fairy Tale is no fairy tale at all. An analysis and police reports describe how Shorty was driving an unlicensed, untested, uninsured car at almost 120km/hr in a residential area where max. 60 was allowed. He hit another car which resulted in the driver's death (a 69 year old woman). He had no driver's license. Shorty has bad luck with cars, but asks for it: in 1995 or 1996 he sold one that did not belong to him. For these acts Shorty has never been prosecuted.
But the main portion of the document concerns the question if the March government statement that Shorty's MOT [unusual transactions] have been checked with the public ministry, with the conclusion reached in December 2010 that there were no punishable offences and, thus, no reason to prosecute. This is about a total of ANG800K/USD440K in some 50 transactions.
Akshon Sivíl has formerly approached attorney general Piar asking for confirmation that the public ministry really has investigated the MOT transactions. Piar never replied.
Mention is also made of several occasions where Shorty had to be forced in court to pay back enormous debts, and in those cases fraud is suspected as well.
It never rains but it pours, huh Shorty? Snicker snicker.
It's (Almost) Official
PM Shorty will have to go. If you've read between the lines below, you know we won't be sorry. However, he has time to go on embezzling until the end of summer recess (but that's only this week). The thing is, his own party member Rosier (or maybe Rozier) has abandoned ship and does not want any more collaboration with Wiels's PS. For the remaining time, he wants a zakenkabinet [business cabinet] consisting of experts. Would be a real experiment here, for sure.
The best joke is on that FOØL Godett who should have to forget all about partaking in a replacement government. I can only hope, because I don't trust the rest, either...
Hooboy, was I right. PAR is already negotiating with, among others, Godett.
Bientu Investigation Finished
The report has been delivered to the public prosecutor who now has to decide what is to be done. Someone, or more, may be summoned to appear in court. Not only dos Santos is a suspect, but there is "no comment" on whether sinister of theft Imalootin is another one.
Green Power: Let Us Pray
Again, Aqualectra cut us all off yesterday; and the director had the temerity to tell us on TV that we should "pray for wind." He warned we may face one more day without electricity. That's green science for you.
As they told us there was so little wind day before yesterday, I made it a point to check expected wind speeds yesterday. Even took out my anemometer. There was plenty of wind, plenty.
The guy was shot in prison. You may well figure "good riddance" but point is, how did another criminal in prison get a gun? It gets better: they searched the place and found yet another gun. Next question obviously is, how many did they miss? Sinister of injustice Wilsoen was nowhere to be found. No doubt he has more pressing problems right now.
Even Godett feels it may not be kosher to join Shorty's Gang. He asks party members what he should do (they don't seem very interested, only a few turned up.) Summing it up, we're still nowhere... but if even he thinks it ain't so easy... may cause problems... need we say more?
MFK Rosier reportedly is considering to retract his support of MFK. Must be heavy! And MAN is forced to let one minister seat go, Cooper or Koeiman. Wish I had one of them hidden mike-transmitters. Wow! what fun to listen in to those guys meeting.
"Not Enough Wind"
Yesterday there was no electricity all afternoon; not only here but over large parts of the island. Aqualectra explained "there was not enough wind." Maybe not, but plenty of hot air; that highly-vaunted park was with much fanfare opened by PM Shorty less than two weeks ago. And wait until October-November, when there's hardly any wind at all but all airco units are working full blast.
Today we had several hours of black-out again. But please, don't dare blame the wind this time. I have this anemometer.
Let's Have a Break
Go over to our miss Curaçao Stephanie Rose Chang's Fakebooc page, enjoy the sights and give her a like! What is there not to like? And they tell me, it helps her to compete. As a friend remarked, shows there's not only putrid politicians emanating from Curaçao.
Plenty Cash, No Plan
Plan Nashonal pa Desaroyá Bario (PNDB), PM Shorty's pet project to develop the barrios, has definitely ground to a halt. Blamed is that nasty aanwijzing that prescribes a personnel hiring stop—but all the time when they could hire they didn't. There hasn't even been a general director for the past half year. There is no plan at all, come right down to it.
One question: why, if the aanwijzing gets the blame, do we then still pay those 5 extra cents per liter of fuel; also disapproved by RvM?
Ombudsman Wants Changes
Martijn is a person, really. Her beef is that civil servants who illegally refuse to cooperate with her office can just do that as the law stipulates no sanctions.
She also wants to be able to scrutinize governmental companies and foundations. Hear hear. But she must per force ask parliament head Arsjes to enable this, so we can only wish her good luck.
Rumors that MFK Pisas was bribed to leave the party (and the coalition) to help us get rid of Shorty's Robber Gang, as published by that ultra-reliable gossip sheet Ultimo Noticia, have Wiels mighty worried. He is surprised that no action has been taken on this and plans to inform governor Goedgedrag, so an investigation can be started. Betcha all dos Santos's ill-begotten gains that we'll never hear more about it.
Wrong there: we heard the very next day that justice is investigating. Pisas claims they've tried to bribe him three times, but he never bothered to lodge a complaint. Guess it's pretty run-of-the-mill for a parliament member to be offered bribes. But Pisas (hey, he's a certified cop) ought to have lodged a complaint, and he never did. Probably just tried to drive up the bids..
Wiels also tells us that negotiations with FOØL Godett have been going on for months. PNP Davelaar states he is ready to start talking about a government post once Shorty has taken his leave.
It Can't Be!
We were wondering if sheikh el Hakim was, for a change, telling the truth. Seems we were right there: CDM ("Dok") has not paid all its debts. For one thing, a lot of temporary workers have not received payment at all and a lot more were only half paid. For another thing: newspapers swallowed hook, line and sinker el Hakim's story that CDM terrains have been transferred to CPA Curaçao Port Authority, but as lawyers have seized part of the grounds that bears checking as well.
But we do hear that the payments for Cuban slaves have been canceled.
Musical Chairs in Parliament
MAN Cleopa retracted his vote in parliament for the coalition, but a fat lot of good that is. FOØL Godett, that reliable opportunist, immediately saw his chance to jump into the honeypot. Hitzig Bazur sent out an email in which he tries to sell the idea that it all is such a real pity, as Shorty and his Gang were under control already by RvM's actions. Dream on, Bazur.
As We Figured
Today, diesel and gasoline prices go down with 15 cents/liter. But we are still paying the 5 cents/liter that have been declared illegitimate by Cft. Cooking gas stayed up, even while Curgas buying price went down; just to prove a point we made a long time ago.
Can It Be?
Sheikh el Hakim claims that all debts of Curaçao Dock CDM have been paid, and they even managed to break even last quarter. The trade unions confirm this, which is more of a confidence builder. However, one burning question remains: does that include the eighty million dollars CDM has to pay in the USA for using Cuban slaves?
Shut Up, Please
More Rosalia talk. Now it's a person who still works at Kas di Kultura but seems to resent Rosalia's forced departure and even passes on confidential information to him (the man must be a real grudge-bearer). KdK-top has lost confidence in her, has set her aside and bluntly refused to meet with Abvo trade union for discussions.
Rosalia says... but who cares what he says? Let it go. One thing, a Kdk audit has been done by Tara Prins, Arsje's wife which to me means it's a priori unreliable. Sorry Tara, with a hubby like that you ask for it. By a coïncidence [?] Arsjes, Rosalia and Wilsoen, who is supposed to glue the KdK shards together are members of WhirlyWiels' PS party.
What's Up, Shorty?
PM Shorty does not agree with governor Goedgedrag's interpretation of the RvM aanwijzing to correct the budget deficit, and announces he will protest it. Probably just words, as usual for him: he announced he would protest the aanwijzing itself as well, and still has not done so while half the time allotted for that has gone by already.
Now We Should Be Getting Some Action
and Civil, Too for a Welcome Change
Akshon Sivíl not just upsets the apple cart but kicks it right over, by requesting the public ministry formally to investigate Aqualectra, Curoil and RdK Refineria di Korsou. All have a plethora of subsidiary companies which I'll spare you. The Dutch word for the procedure is enquête (actually French: Vive la France! Vive la République! Vive le conquérant Napoléon!) which can also be translated with 'inquest' (shades of the infamous inquisition). More actions may follow, is a fair guess.
None of these government-owned companies have published their yearly statements over 2010 and 2011, which they are obliged to do within eight months after year's end. That's only for starters. To give you the gist (still quite a list):Aqualectra was forced to transfer 60 million worth of shares in BOO to RdK for free, resulting in an over 40m loss in 2010. Aqualectra's consumer price was lowered while fuel cost, payable to Curoil, was raised. 2002 and 2008 pricing regulations have been canceled without replacing them, so it's unclear how investments can be financed. Aqualectra now has a debt to Curoil of 100 million guilders.Akshon Sivíl asks the Public Ministry for immediate measures. The government should lose its right to vote in these companies' affairs; one or more competent persons should be appointed as commissioners or managers in order to guarantee continuity of power and water supply; and incompetent present managers and commissioners should be fired.
In 2011 the government has forced the RvC [council of commissioners] to check on all expenditures of over 50 guilders, which effectively makes the RvC execute government policy, which is against the law. Mandatory RvC meetings have not been held every four months. RvC has contracted external advisors for millions of guilders without conforming to the corporate governance law.
Aqualectra was forced to 'return' a surplus of 5MWatts capacity, which endangers production reliability. Maintenance on two gas turbines has been stopped, halted and aborted (take your pick) endangering 22MW of production capacity and company survival.
Aqualectra is unable to transfer taxes and social insurance payments on salaries. (The management denies this and claims it runs its own insurance business.)
There has not been an open invitation to tender for that solar PV panels deal. Aqualectra has been forced to sign a MOU with a Spanish company, which involves a change in the production mix, without reasons given why the original mix (wind, diesel, gas) needed changing.
Aqualectra's debt to Curoil of 100 million guilders results in an equivalent debt of Curoil to Venezuelan PdVSA, endangering fuel supply. Refineria di Korsou ("Isla") has blown all 200 million guilders of reserves and has no funds left for investments. RdK signs agreements with suppliers and contractors (reputedly friends of the management) without obligatory public tender or bids.
Recently Aqualectra, BOO and Curoil collectively invested millions in automated systems, probably instigated by the government.
It's a Habit and a Tradition
Once again, our transparent, incorruptible and high-minded leaders preferred to select one of their cronies for a nice, fat and well-paying job instead of following the obligated candidate selection procedure. This time it's the managing director of Studiefinanciering [study financing, but you got that already]. Just in time, too!
Cooper Doesn't Get It
MAN mudbelly Cooper doesn't seem to understand why Cleopa wants to retract his support for the coalition. "Ethical-moral reasons"... pshaw! Stuff and nonsense—grow up, this is politics, kid! The catch is, unless PM Shorty succeeds in attracting PNP's or FOØL's support instead he's a goner, and so is Cooper and the rest of the Gang. MAN states they are taking their time deliberating, but we can hardly wait. Neither can Cleopa, judging from the latest news; he won't budge a metric inch and wishes that "order, discipline and respect return".
They Just Felt Like It
Newspaper Antilliaans Dagblad somehow (hmm) acquired a document stating that our government has decided to cancel the cooperation with St. Maarten. It's an idea of MFK sinister of
stealingspending Imalootin' and has been voted through on July 18. All ministers, their secretaries and interim-managers still have to agree.
Burning question: if they thought this such a great idea, why keep it a secret?
That cooperation concerns police, public ministry, prisons, courts of justice, council for law enforcement, but also the joint coast guard and (aha!) the central bank.
Put It in Perspective
Israel's war budget has just, what with one thing and another, been adjusted to max 30 billion dollars "for a worst case scenario". This includes security fences along the border, F-15 jets, Dome anti-rocket systems—you name it.
Now compare with PM Shorty planning to spend $55 billion for some solar PV panels, I beg you.
Decisions for Dummies
As from now, all government decisions and new laws have to be accorded by governor Goedgedrag (which means Good Behavior.) Let him be a lighting example. This is in consequence of the RvM decisions.
Rather ironic: exactly those guys who "won" the elections because they had the biggest mouths clamoring for independence are the ones to lose it.
Failure Blames Failure
Aqualectra utility is in severe problems. Even now, parts of the islands are periodically cut off already; and only that (snap fingers here) has to happen and we'll get blacked out. Just like in Nigeria and Haïti, right. Difference is, our economy is much more dependent on a reliable electricity supply.
Aqualectra blames PM Shorty who thought it a nice populist idea to lower tariffs when oil was very expensive; this has cost Aqualectra 30 million guilders, they say. But as Aqualectra is 100 million in the red, that can only be part of the problem.
Constancia Keeps Quacking
Like a duck, and just as smart. She keeps changing the health insurance proposals on a totally ad hoc basis. I won't bother you with the details, they don't really matter and are mere wisps of haze, but do point out that this new insurance arrangement is figuring as an important part of the supposed savings in the new budget that should be ready before September.
Interestingly, the presidents of commissie Volksgezondheid [public health committee] have just left government coalition parties MAN and MFK. Then again, this or half of it may have been just a rumor.
Contraption Coming Apart
from circulating email
MAN Cleopa has withdrawn his support for the coalition government, in which party member Mudbelly Cooper has a seat. PS WhirlyWiels in raving madness shrieked that 'Judas' Cleopa should order a coffin, all in good clean fun, of course. ("No your honor, that's not an 'incitement' or 'threat'.") Now Shorty and his gang face a majority opposition in parliament, but FOØL Godett immediately joined the coalition "because he wants to serve the country."
MFK party boss Rozier is so disgusted, he's quitting and returns to private enterprise. Three other MFK-members have also left, and the word is Shorty has offered them large bribes to stay on as parliament members (mere sprats to catch a giant
mackerelwhale). But later, Shorty's party denied all this; and Wiels claims that there have been attempts to bribe MFK-member Pisas with six-digit numbers to leave the party.
Then there's Imalootin, whose resigning letter is reported to sit on Shorty's desk already.
Cleopa says his withdrawal is caused by 'ethical-moral' matters.
Less than Maximum
PS parliament president Arsjes denies there are too many civil servants working for parliament. My, they aren't even at the maximum allowance and might hire two more! This while the private sector keeps shrinking.
Much Too Late
Sinister of Spending I'm-a-Looting seems to have announced he will take his leave next January 31. Probably figures he'll have made his pile by then, and there won't be much left to make it worthwhile sticking around. At any rate, this may mean Shorty and his Gang may disband. May be much too late, but can't be soon enough.
Shorty's Apologies with More Lies for Dessert
PM Shorty has apologized to the workers of Aqualectra utility after calling them a bunch of no-good lazy loafers for which we, the people have to pay the price. As if he cared. Judging from the newspapers, the workers didn't fall for it; "we've had it with him."
Shorty then claimed that the planned buy of 100mW worth of solar panels was "a typo", should have been 10. No explanation who made the typo and why such a glaring error was not corrected sooner. That number served as the flimsy base for pulling a plant down this year, after all.
Next thing, Aqualectra trade unions insisted the entire board of commissioners (commissarissen) had to go. "They've done more harm than good"$#8212;amen to that.
Just one small comment: Depending on where you buy them, it's pretty safe to say that a PV panel costs anywhere between USD1-4, so that would be an investment of at least 100 billion dollars, for the panels alone. Especially when you buy them from Shorty! Then he could charge us all 400 billion and pocket 300.
Prices & Tourism Up
Prices up 3.3% last month, showing a steadily growing trend this year. Interesting detail: Potatoes, fruit and veggies +1.4%.
Tourism went up with 9%, mostly from Venezuela. 55% of all visitors said it was highly probable they'd recommend a visit to family and friends; however, that question was asked upon their arrival.
Well, it's a person, not a mere man—but that person is investigating all ministries since 2010. Everybody who has experienced a ministry not following a court order is requested to go to hir/hes office before August 20 and inform them of the fact.
PM Shorty has not seen Frente Sivíl's ultimatum yet, and his representative asks, as he well might, when those 2x24 hours are supposed to start, or end: after Shorty has actually read it? But Frente Sivíl gives the answer: they have passed already. And then they compare Shorty with Peter Stuyvesant, claiming we have a dictatorship already. Not knowing too much about Stuyvesant my guess is this is too much honor for Shorty. Anyway, Frente Sivíl announces they will intensify their actions.
Splains a Lot
Just happened to learn that Rosaria, chief of young political party PAIS, is a former member of PNP. Merely another old politician, in other words.
And So They Did
At the official opening of the wind generating park contractor NuCapital announced they wanted to give something back to the community with a gift of ANG50k for good causes. We thought they had left a gift already.
By the way, we finally were informed about the lifetime of those windmills: fifteen years which means 2027. We'll see about that. And we still have not the vaguest idea of the price.
Compulsive Liar Strikes Again
It's hard to get a view through the smokescreen covering up what exactly is going on with Aqualectra. The former management claims that PM Shorty has another lying fit when he claims sickness insurance premium has not been paid by the company; they have their own internal insurance system, which includes pensionaries. Quite possible.
On the other hand, we'd be fools to believe that bunch just like that.
Wiels is in Venezuela, that's why he's so quiet; here at least. At a congress of left parties he has been fulminating against (you know what's coming already) the IMF and Holland and also (but this is a surprise) the United Nations. I thought those guys were pretty leftist themselves. But Wiels calls that august body "a cuppola [sic! maybe smart Wiels is mixed up with the Washington Capitol] of evil, hypocrisy and cynicism." Probably because the UN has declared Holland not to be so colonialist as Wiels feels.
To give Wiels a square'n'fair deal, something known as BOB—bending over backwards, he certainly has a point about the IMF.
Minister of quackery Constancia keeps insisting stubbornly there's plenty of money to start building a new hospital. What do we know? We'll see.
One of the reforms in the health department is a higher premium; goes up to 13%, 3% of which payable by the employee and 9% by the employer. Which is pretty tough on the penshonados who'll have to pay it all themselves. Constancia says "she's prepared to talk it over" with them. How grand.
If there were justice, you'd think the pension-payer should pay 9% leaving the pension-receiver to pay 3%. But as Larry Niven would say, tanj.
News Reel Police State Scene
Long lines at gas stations. Parts of Willemstad city closed for the public. Public offices closed at 15:00. Police and military all over. There really is a lot of discontent flowing around, and that's not, as WhirlyWiels and his goons always threaten, directed against Holland but against our Own Great Leaders.
Fort Amsterdam, where the Frente Sivíl petition was supposed to be delivered, was closed down as well. Two representatives were allowed in, but guess what? They didn't get to see a minister. After the Colombian party Shorty preferred to visit, he moved on to the Grand Opening of the wind generating park at Playa Kanoa.
The trade unions threatened one because of PM Shorty's (The Man Who Would Be King) statements on Aqualectra and its workers, but as for now it has been avoided; and the as always immediately resulting long waiting lines at gas stations have dissolved.
Aqualectra workers are really pissed off because Shorty didn't deign to appear at a meeting, but went to a Colombian party instead, accompanied by Aqualectra management and directors. The fight is about umpteen millions of guilders of premium for social security that Aqualectra allegedly never bothered to pay over.
In a "general strike" would be included Aqualectra, Curaçao Dock CDM and Isla refinery.
Free, But How?
As from next school-year, education will be free, Monky says. And the 1% extra tax will not be imposed. But he declines to explain where he'll get the money from.
What a Shame
The magnificent building at Mundo Nobo housing Aqualectra's water plant will be demolished. Another decision by Shorty, who probably has a deal pending with a hotel chain. But while he claims water can be produced cheaper by wind and solar energy (but how?) we now have the answer to one question: 1 kWh produced in that plant costs 1 Antillean guilder. How do they manage that? Answer: they don't.
This afternoon 16:00 an ultimatum will be delivered by Frente Sivíl, demanding the abdication of Shorty's régime. I use the word because that abomination is not worthy of the term "government". The ultimatum will not be handed to Shorty, "he isn't worth it." Granted, but who else is there?
Frente Sivíl asks us to join them at Fort Amsterdam with pots and pans, vuvuzelas and maracas (no guns, please). Could be a dynamite show! But will it have any effect? You can only hope so.
Say, when are we finally getting those cheap vegetables and fruit as promised pronto, in May? We're getting mighty hungry; every weekly visit to the supermarkets gets 10 guilders more expensive, like clockwork.
Curaçao Ship Registration
Many ships are registered in Curaçao as this comes with many advantages. There's nothing wrong with that; the prestigious Holland-America Line does so as well. However, a Russian ship carrying weapons for Syria was recently stopped near Scotland; after the insurance was withdrawn it was forced to return to Russia. The United States have warned the maritime industry that Iranian ships were still using other countries' flags in an attempt to evade Western sanctions against the country. With PM Shorty's well-known sympathies for the Iranian regime (and don't forget Squandering Sheikh el Hakim) we can only hope that Holland will enforce that RvM aanwijzing: Curaçao will refrain from helping PdVSA to break the Iran blockade.
Wonder What Wiels Will Wail?
Dutch minister Spies really rubs it in. It comforts us, even if it's much too late, we'll have to pay up anyway. But for Shorty and his Gang there's no way out. They have to do what RvM says—or else. Else = the kingdom in all its majesty will take control of Curaçao's economy management, no matter how much Wiels may rave, rant and rodomontade. Hey, that's a good word.
Yet another university is planning to settle down here, this time one of the Cistercien Order of the Sacred Hearts of Jesus and Maria. Sounds good, huh? Holiness just oozes out of that. Sheikh of
squanderingeconomy el Hakim was all for it. But the director turns out to have been sentenced for abusing six boys. He says he's paid for that with jail time and besides, you know, they were minors. But the judge also forbid him to do any more teaching; and Hakim didn't have an inkling.
Said director got twelve months in jail of which six on probation, right here in Curaçao, last March. Hey, that's only three months ago! (Maybe he was paroled for good behavior.)
Hold Your Belly
One of the funniest items in the RvM's aanwijzing is that Curaçao may not borrow any more (now it comes) without the previous accordance by (are you ready?) minister Imalooting!
About Time, Too
Aqualectra utility is strongly protesting against PM Shorty's senseless solar schemes. About time, too. Better yet, they have the same reasons I have been telling you so all the time. And they don't trust Assyce Fotovoltaica S.L. for a mµ, either. Aqualectra buys wind-energy for 22 cents/kWh and claims that can drop to 17. But they will have to pay 42 cents for solar energy; plus they have to store the day's production for nightly use; a very expensive proposition.
To repeat once again, it does get tiresome, at night you have to run fossil-fuel generators, so in effect you have a double investment. Count out your profits: the sun shines for free! Small wonder politicians love Green Energy.
The only thing missing here, sorely missing, is: how much does Aqualectra figure a fossil-fuel kWh costs them? Guess they have no idea; after all, it's a government-owned company.
Curaçao Cultural Customs
Rosalia may have been replaced with Basilio or maybe Bacilio, at Kas di Kultura, but it looks like all culturally inclined types are autocrats. Now KdK plum refuses to negotiate with Abvo civil servants union as they don't like the way their representative acts. Says Abvo's Wilson darkly "there are ways to tackle KdK; we can play games just as well."
No wisecracks about how indicative this is of our quarrelsome Curaçao Culture, please.
Rumors are rife, how often that term pops up! that the audit for KdK is kept hidden very carefully. Figures, with that fanatical corruption fighter PS Wiels protecting Rosalia, who must have been spending money like the crazy cuckoo clown he is.
Cats Have No Shame
PAR states that the government didn't listen to anybody's advice; ex-PM Elhage mentions opposition, experts, pressure groups, Cft, private sector and the Curaçao community and now they got what's coming to them. If PM Shorty and his Gang had even the slightest sense of shame, they would abdicate tomorrow. (She forgot to mention this site but I guess she never visited here either.)
Why wait so long? Anyway, "cats have no shame" according to Dutch writer Daan Zonderland; let alone dogs.
Monky Knows Not
Now, the costs for the first year of free education are quoted as ANG17.2M, which the ministry of education will have to scrape together. That's quite a bit less than 34 but still far too much loose change slushing around for comfort; especially since those 34m come from all ministries together.
Accepting, for the sake of argument, that Monky knows what he's talking about.
Shorty Opens Park
Good thing he found time in his busy schedule. Friday July 17 PM Shorty will open the much-vaunted or detested, depends whom you talk to, wind generator park. Let's hope they're all working by then: all 5 generators have been turning since the 5th, but #4 broke down last Thursday (that's five days ago, folks). Oh wait, now #4 is turning again but #5 (took them very long to get that one on-line) has stopped! Sure, it's only temporary. So are those monskirs.
Well, that's not how I would describe Frente Sivíl's plan to collect 10,000 people to agitate for new elections now. Anyway, they plan another meeting at SKS building, next Thursday (19th) between 17:00-19:30. Between you and me, I'd opt for the word "turnover"; but then again, I'm not a journalist. And can SKS hold that many people? I'd be surprised, but it should be a good start.
Akshon Sivíl has asked PG Piar [attorney general] if PM Shorty's about fifty (50!) MOT [unusual transactions] entries to the tune of ANG800,000 have really been investigated, as claimed by the government; a question that has been asked by media before without answer forthcoming. Also, did Shorty pay taxes on that? Akshon Sivíl wants a reply in ten days from now; then it's the Ombudsman. It's quite doubtful if those transactions are legit, especially in view of Shorty's well-known and documented criminal activities.
Ifwhen it turns out Piar has not properly investigated, Akshon Sivíl will lodge a complaint against Shorty. For good measure, a copy of the letter has been sent to BAB tax accounting.
If Shorty has been investigated, it may turn out his ill-begotten money is the result of criminal activities (like fraud, bribery and tax evasion), in which case Akshon Sivíl will lodge an official complaint.
6% Cut. Oh yeah?
All ministries, so it has been decided last week even before the RvM, have to cut their budget by 6%. That should result in saving 34 million guilders. If they can manage; Wilsoen's justice alone is rumored to have an extra deficit of some 30m; and how Monky now can announce that "free education" (good for 20 to 30m, but who knows?) will be paid out of his ministry's "own sources", is not really clear. If he really has that sort of loose change laying around, hey, what sort of budget is that? That's ~5% of all ministries' budgets together! Small wonder the country
financeis such a mess.
It's All Off
Kranshi definitely will not move to Thomascollege Hoogstraat (now called Martinuscollege). The
irresponsible sinister Monky now has a programma van eisen (specification) for what's needed and the building does not comply.
Too bad he never thought of that before.
One Bridge Too Close
SMOC wonders why Dutch PM Rutte and the RvM have not forced PM Shorty to take action about the Isla refinery problems as well. One fell swoop, as the expression goes. While there's much to be said for that, it's also understandable that Rutte's priorities lie somewhere else. And let's face it, that new hospital is pretty urgent as well.
Frente Sivíl Wants You!
Yes, girls and boys, Frente Sivíl is looking for 10,000 people to come together and make a fist against our government. Couldn't come at a better time. But getting that many people to hit the streets, here? I strongly doubt it. Even with the infamous May 1969 revolting riots there were maybe a tenth of that around. Karnaval? Yeah, that's more like it.
But I wouldn't be surprised if Frente Sivíl has surprises in petto. For starters, they have announced a sub, Akshon Sivíl.
Shorty Doubles Down
He keeps on with his broken-record act that his government was already working on all those measures now forced through their throats. But even now, with the September date obligatory, the dopey dolt states his 16 reforms will be in place before the end of this year. Not good enough. He says that they "already" saved 30M and finally that the deficit is "only" 85M, not 150M; but we think it's even higher.
Media warn the Dutch measures will result in higher taxes (but that will not result in higher tax income, mark my words) and less government services (we doubt that too; no civil servants will be fired.)
All measures will remain in effect until Cft advises RvM that they can be retracted. And it's pretty safe to predict that Shorty's protest with Raad van State will get him nowhere. He'd better get to work: while Greece problems, to compact a lot of info, comprise 6% of GPD, ours are at 9%.
Shorty also keeps whimpering that the country was in such a bad condition when he took over, because of mismanagement by former governments. Despite the Dutch money injection, it's in much worse condition, though. Must have picked up that whimpering and wailing from Obama, but doesn't have the advantage of being black, even if Wiels claims it's all because of that.
Some More Welcome Fall-out
It was announced after the RvM "Kingdom Come" meeting that Dutch minister Rosenthal will "explain" to the USA about those stupid Wilsoen letters. Must be hard; and it's obvious Wilsoen (a mule kicked in the head by a mule when a cute baby-mule) refuses to do it himself. The inkeerregeling will not prevent justice to sue those suspected of money-laundering. And Shorty must stop boycotting the Iran-boycott.
All that must be extremely bad news to Robbie dos Santos and sheikh el Hakim, to name but a few. And Shorty... don't forget Shorty and ole MAN Mudbelly Cooper. Good!
PS Whirlywiels feels what the kingdom wants is "unacceptable". Because there will be elections in Holland soon, those Dutch politicians are just acting tough against those Curaçao negritos to make a good impression. Says he—look who's talking! It wasn't worth going to Holland for, he continues; right there, for once. And you must hope he's wrong that this will make his party more popular.
A few sentences later he regrets the abolishment of market protection. Sure! that great intellect never heard of SALT treaties and even more sure, it fits in what we must call his brain (words fail me) that he longs for a black market. Yeah, that's an 80-20 pun. Remember Bateria Leon? Wish I could forget it!
Now We'll See, Maybe
The Dutch government has forced Shorty and his Gang to reduce the budget with ANG150 million. No specific measures have been prescribed, so they don't want to use the term "guardianship". Shorty still claims they're already doing everything needed, but he must have a plan ready on September first. So they can go on raking, ransacking and rummaging until then (and also pillage, plunder and pilfer), even if Cft will get a monthly report on what they're doing.
But at any rate, the loans for the new hospital and by UTS are scratched. Shorty will protest with the Raad van State, even though it will do him no good. Sparing you the ugly technical details. Final remark: in an admittedly uncharacteristic manner, the Dutch behaved like gentlepersons and bent over backwards to preserve what there's left of Shorty's dignity.
That's what he says now, at least: PS Wilsoen's notorious letters and his illegal order to stop investigating Robbie dos Santos will be retracted; the so-called inkeerregeling will be adapted so it can't be used to launder money. The budget will be adapted following Cft's recommendations. We can only hope that's good enough. But it's bad news for PS Monky who with his bomba WhirlyWiels still maintains next year education will be free.
Mark that more heavy stuff may still follow in the RvM today; this was just a preliminary conversation. And don't think we can now sit back and relax, either: the guys just can't be trusted.
They actually said it before, officially, but I heard this so often around here: "then I'll never have to work anymore." Hey, it often is hard work but most human beings like work. Keeps 'em of the streets. Of course, a reasonable compensation is welcome.
Get to the point: which is, there's so much oil and gas around the world, that whatever we have around this tiny bit of real estate is hardly worth the trouble. Get (back, hmmm) to work. Please?
St. Maarten, co-owner of UTS, does not agree with the idea of UTS borrowing what's now over 11 million guilders to pay out to the government. They're so right.
Happens All the Time
I was wrong (but admit it, and that is pretty rare). Somewhere I picked up that author Frank Martinus was René Rosalia's Kas di Kultura follow-up. Remember René? You're so right, better forget about him, except for the lessons we learned; hopefully. Anyway, it wasn't Martinus but Gibi Bacilio. Don't make no difference, mon: half of personnel is now on strike because, yeah... why? Well, they liked Rosalia better than they like Bacilio. Weird types. But they were hired by René... aah! that explains it.
Lots of Luck with That
Frente Sivíl and Pro Pueblo have taken out advertisements, inciting us to hit the streets en masse and clamor for new elections. Both organizations mention lots of things wrong with the country (I don't have to quote them, you'll find them all if you just read on)—(howzdat for service?) One thing I missed, they describe Jackaloodin as "always dressed like a gigolo"—but then, I go out of my way to keep out of his way.
Too bad they don't mention a date for the mob to hit the streets. After all, most of us hit the streets on a daily base, be it for other purposes.
Higher and Higher
Newspaper Antilliaans Dagblad claims there's a letter written by the top of Jamaloodin's finance ministry, according to which the country's debt is another ANG150M higher then Cft mentions. But Jamaloodin refuses to answer questions about this in parliament; he will do so in another letter.
As the guy can hardly spell, that will take a couple of days—until after PM Shorty is safely back from that meeting in Holland. Safely, you ask? Well, I guess they won't throw him in jail; yet.
Another Vote of No Confidence
In minister Jamaloodin; but this one went all the way; no afkeuring like last time. It didn't help; only PAR voted for, PNP Davelaar didn't show up and FOOL Godett voted along with the coalition. PAR lost, score 6-8. This is vote of no confidence #4 Jamaloodin has survived. Nobody understands why; the guy even refuses to answer the question if he's another suspect in the bientu-affair (that's good enough for us).
Cft: and about those 5 extra cents for fuel, NO!
It didn't agree with us, and Cft agrees with us: those 5 cents/liter of gas which are supposed to go into a fund for barrio-improvement are a no-no. If the government is serious about keeping that out of the budget [sounds like Cft can't believe their eyes here], than that's very undesirable in regard of sound financial management.
Needless to say, Shorty and Jamaloodin maintain that Cft is completely wrong, their plans are totally feasible. But Dutch parliament has already indicated an aanwijzing instruction is the only way left.
Cft Comes Across
Cft [financial supervision] advises RvM minister's council, just as expected, to give the Curaçao government an aanwijzing instruction. Well, it's more than one instruction, but they all serve to conform the budget to the norms of kingdom law.
Cft does not believe the government-owned companies will pay 25 million guilders; it has never happened before, not to mention risks they run now. Neither does Cft think it a good idea for UTS to borrow money for paying the government.
Cft cannot permit the loan for a new hospital (only yesterday it was announced by minister of quackery Constancia that building will start three months from now.)
Worst is, I can't help feeling Cft missed a lot; or it may just be the media. Well, let's wait for the Saturday morning news...
News Flash Shorty decided his meeting with Total was not so urgent after all (matter of fact Total was here yesterday!) and will go the the RvM meeting. Shorty declares that Cft's advice comes "too early" and that his government is working on it twice as hard (and we here thinking they were only busy looting, pillaging and plundering).
It's anybody's guess how RvM will react. Let us hope for the best. You may guess what we judge best.
It was someone of PAR who called Shorty a "pathological liar", but I don't know who or I'd send hir a cake.
In his Flag Day speech, den Haag proxy minister Osepa asks "What happened to us? We were such a nice people." We were, too. He doesn't say it, but the implication is "and now we all come across like brutes and savages." Well, Osepa, it's your government and your party, and as far as the people are concerned, it all went downhill since May 1969 and keeps accelerating down the slippery sloppy slope.
Many of us are even more sorry than you are. Much more sorry. You, Osepa (rhymes with usurper) have a nice soft seat to park your *$$ on plus I don't even dare to guess what salary (with pension... don't forget the pension... I'm sure he doesn't) coming in. But it's not the money. It's the mentality.
More Power to Green Energy
So much for that: the illegal dumping of rubbish from the old wind generator foundations in yet another conservation area is continuing; nobody seems to be able or willing to stop it. What a farce all that green sh*t is, but most people refuse to open their eyes and pretend they don't smell the broken wind. As always and everywhere.
Near Seru Fortuna some guy allows illegal dumping on a terrain for a much lower price than the landfill charges. Small wonder it's popular, and much closer by town too.
As the old law has been invalid since 10-10-10 and there's no new one yet, it seems nothing can be done about this except try to catch it under some other head.
A letter-to-the-editor by Gommert-Jan Krijger suggests that the old hospital, soon to be replaced? [aside: but where will they get the money] suggests the government should take that old hospital complete with annex Thomascollege, and rebuild it for their complete HQ. It's right across the street from Kranshi anyway and has lots and lots of space. There are many beds available too, where civil servants can relax, maybe even what the Dutch
whoresex worker ads called "discreetly", for a while after they are exhausted by their worrisome besognes. I mean physically exhausted, there's hardly any mental to exhaust. In by far most cases.
The governor has returned the free education bill unsigned to parliament, because of "great shortcomings". Small wonder; the wonder is he did what he should do. I never listen to WhirlyWiels radio program, but tonight it might be worth the trouble. (But they really should put an umbrella on the microphone.)
And now for the 80-20 bill. Even MFK-party is disgusted by that piece of nonsense.
Tromp's Message of Doom
After Central Bank director Tromp warned about the budget deficit, he added some rather interesting facts about longer-term items. The PdVSA agreement with Isla refinery ends in 2019, which will need enormous investments no matter how. In that year the off-shore arrangements end and they have to be renewed before companies leave for greener pastures. And finally, in the same year the country must start paying back the 30% national debt loan to Holland.
Capital flight is now rumored to have reached 700 million guilders.
At least, they are considering an appeal against the court decision forcing them to lower prices. They foresee a shortage of medicines as a consequence. But as our minister of quackery Constancia and sheikh of money-matters el Hakim assure is that the government will guarantee this will not happen, we're not worried one bit.
Can't Blame Constancia
A pity. But it's really not the fault of our minister of Quackery that the country lacks both an inspector of Milieudienst [environment] and Gezondheidszorg [health care]. The salaries offered are too low, says the inspector general. Meanwhile, nothing can be done about Isla pollution, as if things weren't bad enough already; and health care control just doesn't really exist either.
During the week-end they've found a temporary medical guy who'll also handle Bonaire.
PM Shorty has not yet booked his flight to Holland for the next kingdom ministers' conference, July 13. It really looks like he's not going. What a craven coward.
Of course, he may reason "why waste time on that crummy meeting which I can put to much better use sticking around here and looting some more as long as I can." I hate to admit it, but he's got a point.
Shorty now says he already had a date with some people from French fuel company Total. Took him a little while to come up with that.
Central Bank's Tromp warns there's not enough money around to raise tax and AOW pension premium; and likewise, "free" education can only be achieved by cutting somewhere else. So there.
More "good" news: 2010 inflation was 2.8%, 2011 2.3%. GPD grew with 0.4%, 2010 0.1%. It could be worse but should be better. But expected inflation in 2012 is 4.3% and 2013 3%. with a GPD of -0.1% and + 0.2%. Put it in your spreadsheet and smoke it: it all boils down to our money boiling down to less and less, a la bouillabaisse. In other words, we're sunk in the soup, or even Hot Water.
Which book, by a not-so-remarkable coïncidence, features a tee-totaling senator who gets blackmailed for his order with a bootlegger.
sorry, can't find who owns this picture!
Over 1 Million Guilders Down the Drain
No surprise; but for some reason somewhere it's deemed the opportune moment to tell the people now. Former island government members all had a credit card with a limit of $10,000 which they could spend as they liked. Now it's PAR that gets all the blame, but I seem to remember Shorty and Arsjes were members of that club as well; to name but a few. No doubt about it, they're all guilty—hey, they're politicians!
What does seem funny, it's claimed there's no way to check those credit card expenditures in detail now. Sure there is!
He says that his remarks have caused a lot of commotion and retracts them; too bad we don't know which remarks he means. He asks the people to forgive him, jerking out those crocodile teardrops. What a sickening, lying, hypocritical performance! Give the guy a Pinocchio-reward and kick him out.
Turns out he wants permits for not one, but three more guns. He finally claims he's going to do some work. Seeing is believing.
How Do They Manage It?
100,000,000 guilders in the red: that's Aqualectra's debt with Curoil. They hope to expand the wind generator parks by year's end, then start paying it back.
Lots of luck with that.
Please Pay for "Free" Books?
The catholic schools strongly request the pupils' parents to pay now for their books, as Monky's money is not coming through [as yet?] and the schools lack the money to advance. If the parents don't come through now, there will be no books when schools start. By now, can't help asking yourself if they will start again at all: Monky's Mess.
UTS telephone co. seems to be borrowing 12 million guilders to pay to the country and thus diminish the budget deficit. Exactly what every financial advisor will tell you not to do: filling one hole with another.
Cft announced they didn't like it, at least some people still try to reason reasonably.
Rumors are, and they sound only too believable, there's an enormous capital flight from the island these days.
No VDC Leaks
At least, that's what Dutch minister Spies finally states in a very tortuously formulated answer: she "can only conclude no sensitive information that may be harmful has been leaked."
Bad Luck for Botikas
The judge has thrown their arguments out and they will have to adjust their prices downward, as stipulated by the minister of quackery. One question the judge did not (have to) answer: Can those guys be forced to deliver?
Didn't take 24 hours for them to warn for a shortage of medicine.
Writing on the Wall
Possibly. Normally, about 15% of our visitors come from the Antilles.
In the past week, that went up to 27%.
Welcome, guys! and especially, gals.
At least, most of us hope so. Dutch minister Spies states that, if the budget deficit isn't taken care of, the Kingdom government will come with an aanwijzing ["instruction"—heavy stuff: or else!] before the summer recess. That's tomorrow, folks!
Weirdly, Spies quotes a deficit of 85M, while it's much higher. She also mentions in passing that PS Wilsoen still refuses to retract his Bientu letters to the USA. Wish I could sit under the table at the planned 13 July Raad van Ministers [kingdom council] meeting, and not to get a glimpse of her legs either.
We'll Pay Up
Cft financial supervision concludes that Shorty and his Gang of Crooks' budget still has a ANG153M deficit. The deficit must be covered by higher income [read: taxes] and lower costs [read: no way]. But wait, it's even worse—much worse! Cft has no confidence in lower health care costs (neither do we) and has only read in the newspapers about free education; it's not in the budget.
In other words, the deficit is larger than the ANG186M originally quoted.
Thought We'd Mention It
Gasoline and diesel prices went down, but 5 cents for "bario development" will be added. Since yesterday we understand why Shorty is so interested in that. Of course, there's a certain lack of, let's say... transparency (that word again!) in how these prices are built up. But in the USA prices are over 1/4 below those of two months ago. Just saying.
PM Shorty paid another visit to his chaver, Haïti president Martelly, reported the newspapers without any further comment. Hey, do those guys lack all curiosity? What made 'em choose that profession in the first place? It set alarm bells ringing in my such-as-it-is brain right away. Then we have to be informed by another politician, PAR Leeflang about what a sleek cat this Martelly is. I'll give you the gist plus the links.
Martelly received millions from San Juan senator Bautista in exchange for re-building contracts after the earthquakes.
Shorty is good friends with Bogotá mayor Samuel Moreno. They both love barrio development... Same for Medellín mayor Alonso Salazar, convicted for election fraud; he also loves integral barrio development. A lot of money in them there barrios; when you can get them subsidized, there's that... easy when you're mayor or PM.
Another Shorty crony is Dominica PM Skerrit Roosevelt, who helped rich businessman out with political passports; for a fee, of course, of par exemple USD25K/month (Skerrit just loves Chávez and is also involved in election fraud trials).
Final question: who can explain why Haïti, after a slave revolution the first independent "black" republic, has always, but absolutely always, been plagued by rotten selfish leadership? Makes you wonder how long the Haïtians will keep on coming down here to make a decent living.
AOW old age pension will go up next year? Then, first the premium goes up from 13% to 15%, and so does the age you will get the pension: 60 to 65. In a desperate effort to be reasonable: it may be necessary, but how about showing us the bookkeeping, for a welcome change? A simple spreadsheet (if such a thing exists, "rem acu tetigisti") would do the trick and show how many civil servants are working on that thing; for our own good... but naturally!
The Money Go-Round
Curaçao gets €25M for road maintenance. Watch it spin... enough to make you dizzy, but not enough to fix the roads; about 10% of what's needed.
... the money goes 'round and around and around
till it comes back here
when they've all taken their share.
Also read De bouwbeerput by Joep Dohmen.
Stop the Stream
Holland may be stopping the influx of people from Aruba, Curaçao and St. Maarten as from today.
They will only be admitted for over six months if they speak Dutch, have sufficient education and means of subsistence, haven't been in trouble with the law and are no danger to the public peace. This does not apply to "Antillean"-born children of Dutch parents and to students.
Reason is, 1 in 5 "Antilleans" living in Holland have been in trouble with the law and over 11% is unemployed—which is much better than here and, by the way, also better than the €U average right now; among USA so-called African-Americans it's 14.4%... VVD party foresees an enormous inflow of welfare-seekers because of the bad economy down here. Next step of course is WhirlyWiels's Revenge! But VVD saysthe rules will apply on both sides.
Can't seem to get rid of the "Antillean" word.
Soviet-Style Jokes Back
That took pretty long, they had disappeared since FOØL lost the elections to PAR. Took over two years of Shorty and his Gang to have 'em pop back up.
Sinister Jamaloodin goes to a sooth-sayer and asks her "When will I be kicked out?"
She replies, without the merest glimpse into her crystal ball "It will be a National Holiday... Everybody will celebrate!"
a reader's suggestion - thanks André!
Do you want a country where you have to pay a bribe to get a driver's or business license?
Do you want to see a day when the police stop you for imaginary infractions
that can be "adjudicated" on the spot for not-so-imaginary cash?
Then keep tolerating corruption in high places.
ARC Algemene Rekenkamer [general audit-office] will get almost ANG100K less next year. Figures, they're pests... always acting up and making problems... That'll teach them!
They protest, what else is new.
The governor has not signed the law, or whatever it is, on free education. It should have passed by Raad van Advies [advisory council] first before it was presented to him. But what do these nitwits Monky and WhirlyWiels know? They both sound like they spent their entire schooling playing hooky.
It will now take 2 to 4 weeks before RvA advises. Meanwhile, parents refuse to pay and there's still no money to order books, which makes it doubtful if they'll arrive in time.
Jamaloodin and Arsjes Fight
MFK finance sinister Jamaloodin has been interrogated by the police, because of his involvement with the Bientu affair. That doesn't make him a suspect, but PS Wilsoen doesn't want to confirm or deny if he's one. Makes you think a bit. Even parliament head Arsjes started thinking, and he wants Jamaloodin relieved of his functions until this has been cleared up.
Guns in Parliament! Next thing you know, Arsjes and Jamaloodin had a fight Live! on radio, where Arsjes felt "insulted and threatened" and even lodged a complaint with the police.
The story is, Jamaloodin drives around with several bodyguards in front of and behind his car, carries two weapons and wants to add a third one, a Beretta Pm12—more a terrorist-favored assault weapon than a gun. For some reason, ministers are allowed to carry weapons. Now Arsjes wants all parliament members to be allowed to carry as well; alternatively, he wants to retract the permits for the ministers.
We all would prefer the last idea, if that didn't rob us of the chance that in one of the more and more frequent fights in parliament those guys may pull guns and rid us of at least some of them. Dream on...
Edgar Leito, chairman of Movementu Solushon Isla (come on, you know what that means) will not hoist the flag next 2nd of July, in protest of the government. I would join him, but I never hoist flags anyway.
Why Not? We're Broke Already
PM Shorty has signed an agreement to build a solar park for ANG160 million, financed by 'international banks'. It's supposed to last thirty years with a nominal capacity of 75mW. But as the sun doesn't shine at night and we have these things called clouds, the delivered capacity will be at most one quarter of that. The clincher is that the plant will be built by Assyce Fotovoltaico of Spain—the country that is almost bankrupt because of its ruinously expensive "green" adventure.
It has not been decided yet where the solar park will come. I have a suggestion, but it won't catch much sunlight there.
A question that begs to be asked: how much is Shorty making on this deal?
Now That's Transparency
No kidding. Cft [financial supervision] has announced that, as from now, all its reports will (after three weeks) be published on their web site. Too bad we can't find the URL! Anyway, tomorrow already Cft will have a reply ready on the government's ideas on the budget deficit. Bate that breath.
Birds of a Feather
Nine persons and companies have started bankruptcy proceedings against Assendelft van Wijck, well known for his fine contacts with PM Shorty and MAN minister Mudbelly Cooper. The guy has to pay well over 2.5 million guilders. This does not include his debts with Curaçao taxes and Aqualectra utilities (and quite possibly more.)
Turns out, Robbie dos Santos, he of the Bientu affair, is the dark horse behind Playakiki. The plan has been presented by a company "P2 Loge" which is not registered in Curaçao, but the name was that of a "parallel government" in Italy.
Hopefully, this means that those grandiose plans to
ruindevelop the Willemstad coast are definitely O-W-T.
Raad van Advies [advisory board] remarks that in the latest budget hardly a word is dedicated to the economic development; this while the country's tax income is sure to be "structurally" lower than expected as tax receipts will go down. New economic initiatives are missing as well. That's Sheik el Hakim's department.
Our personal jaundiced view is that all those guys are too busy grabbing for themselves what they still can before the curtain falls to maintain the farce; they know damn well that the budget is hopeless, so why
spendwaste time and work on it?
Hail the Flag
Soon, it will be Flag & Hymn Day again. July 2, if you care; can't say I do so, myself. The guys who usually sell chewing gum at road crossings are now in the business of small flags that fit on your car. Last year, I saw one that had eight flags on top and started praying he'd not run into a sudden squall.
Reason I mention it, always makes me wonder if those flags come out of the stock our government ordered in 2004 to distribute, free, but never did. Somebody must have gotten hold of that stock and made a nice little profit. Let's see, who again was boss then? Oh yeah, FOL—there you are.
It's Not Difficult
... to be smarter than WhirlyWiels. Even most politicians agree that the 80-20 deal, now up for voting, will not help one bit in fighting unemployment. Not to mention there are only 10% crackers among the population, the real problem is those unemployed just lack proper training and schooling. (Hey, here's an idea! Why not offer free education?) Then, such a law would be impossible to maintain; especially when, for example, Isla refinery has many Venezuelan workers without any working permit control whatsoever.
Now Osepa's Mad
Our Man in den Haag, MFK plenipotentiary minister Osepa, completely agrees with the Kingdom that PS justice minister Wilsoen went far over the line with his letters to the USA, and that Curaçao should take corrective action. You really begin to wonder if one of them will be leaving shortly, or two, or maybe all? Dream on...
Why Stop There?
All school personnel, like cleaners and janitors, want to get just as much vacation as the teachers. And who shall blame them?
Next step, naturally, is that all civil servants will want it as well.
Oh... Now We Know
Yet another instance where we only learn what's going on from a letter to Ye Editor. This time it's Chris Richards who thinks it's ridic that Arsjes wants to license every parliamentary, now and those from the past, to carry a gun. Has Arsjes gone out of his nut? No, he was already... musta got kicked in the head by a mule when a baby; or maybe later. Are parliamentaries that hated? Some are not... not by everybody... maybe...
One thing you have to admit, Arsjes shows more insight than we'd thought him capable of; at least in this respect.
Don't We All Know It
The Raad van Advies [advisory board] has recently pointed out to the government that the civil servants are "careless and sloppy". The procedure to arrive at a new law is much too long and complicated, but carelessness sets in from the start. Many proposed laws contain "law-technical and editing imperfections." Raad van Advies seems to have the new Ontwerplandsverordening [constitution] in mind without mentioning it as such. There are other examples galore.
Wait a Bit
Somehow (must have cost a lot of overtime... what another politician once called "Blood, sweat and tears") the government did manage to present a new budget to Cft [financial supervision] in time, last Friday. Cft keeps us all in suspense for two more weeks while it's being looked at.
Teach Them a Lesson
Stichting Overheidsaccountantsbureau (Soab) [government accounting] one year ago reported on education finances, but this has never been published. Antilliaans Dagblad now writes that the report pointed at "budget risks" totalling over ANG140M, after only looking at 20% of the 39 possible "risk" posts. We take the freedom of translating "risk" as "red". In other words, don't be surprised if here's another budget deficit of, say, 300 million guilders. Or might be 700 million, who knows? Ministers Monky and Jamaloodin don't, that's for sure.
This is even without considering the recent "free education" measures.
Corallo Not a Mafioso
The Fundashon Pro Pueblo [foundation for the people] has apologized for calling Corallo a mafia boss, after his lawyer had complained that Corallo has never been convicted for any crime. Well, maybe not yet, but in Italy they're working on it.
Mosquito, Dengue, Dunk
Mosquito Dunks, for sale in the USA for about $1/each, contain a bacterium which kills all mosquito larvae, also those spreading dengue. Just dump (part of) one in a barrel, cistern or pool; it's non-toxic, fish and animals are not harmed. Works for a month on a 3x3m2 area of any depth. Price $1-1.50/each.
This may sound like a commercial—wish it were—the reason I mention it is that you can't get it anywhere on this hillbilly island with its rustic clodhopper merchants. Not to mention our Minister of Quackery Constancia.
Let Us Join in the Fun
WhirlyWiels, who may now get in trouble with the United Nations himself, never informed us about his result of his way-back-when quest there to have Holland exposed as colonialist and imperialist. Maybe it didn't work out?
They're Working on It
Since before 10.10.10, the government "welcomes you to the new website of the future country of Curaçao." That's all there is except for some Shorty blah-blahs; nothing has been added since then.
It's in Dutch, but you can choose one language-flag for what you'd presume is Papiamentu. It's Dutch.
The workers at SDK sport complex are on strike. They are sick and tired of never knowing when their salaries will be paid, which has been going on for six months; nor did they get their vacation bonuses. Very well-timed, because this week-end a new athletics course will be opened. How was that paid for, then?
Easy: you can make a dishonest buck by getting a percentage from the builders etc., but not from the workers.
Monky Calls That "Free"?
PS minister Monky explained how education will be free—not. Today, schools will get a letter guaranteeing costs, so they can start ordering books; parents who have already paid can get their money back. The government will take the needed money out of the (already deficient) budget; it all happens in such a hurry that MFK finance minister Jamaloodin has not had a say in this (and doesn't like it one bit).
Next year those with a net, or maybe gross, income of 3421 guilders will pay a 'shoulder tax' of 1%; minimum ANG410.52/year. Combined with the 1% "transaction fee") this is supposed to pay ANG17.2M/year, which is supposed to be enough to make education "free". Which we are supposed to believe.
You might well wonder if this stunt even outlives this week-end.
Trouble for Terry
Uh oh... Now more victims of Terry Hernandez are planning to lodge a complaint with the American Association of Certified Fraud Examiners. And it's of his own making: he didn't agree with Goede winning his court case and said Goede should complain with the Austin, Texas Association. More people (Diaz, Lopez Ramirez, De Lanoy and Dieudonné van der Veen) thought this a fine hint and joined Goede when he did exactly that.
Hernandez himself has lodged an appeal with Dutch Accountantskamer.
Saw It Coming
Something the government does for free? You should know better by now. And right, education will not be free; parents will have to pay a so-called "shoulder-premium" which depends from their income. (We call such a thing "tax".)
So, first the parents have to pay now to get their kids in school; then, they have to pay their shoulder premium and eventually, still later they get the money they pay now, back. They hope. Well-paid civil servants will no doubt take care of that money flow.
Also, all money transfers to foreign countries will be taxed in the future (they tried that one before and it backfired) and the proceeds used for education. Just like the car tax is used for everything except road maintenance.
So much for WhirlyWiels's "promises" he wished to keep.
This quite apart from the question if all education really should be totally free. What you get for nothing isn't worth anything, right?
80-20? Guess Not
PS WhirlyWiels' 80-20 idea is due to be turned into law any day now. Too bad lawyers discover that it is contrary to the €uropean human rights treaty and the UN treaty on racial discrimination. Let the show begin.
After media publications that Dutch justice minister van Opstelten had a leisure conversation with PS Wilsoen, in which they also happened to touch on those letters he sent to the USA, today we get to hear that in fact he talked to Wilsoen like a Dutch uncle, strongly advising him to retract them before tomorrow's RMR... or else.
RMR, or what I call Kingdom Come Conference, is a meeting of the ministers of all (4) countries of the Kingdom of the Netherlands: Holland, Aruba, Curaçao and St. Maarten. Please remember, I'm not gonna explain again.
It may be just that, but rumors about the presence of oil around Curaçao have been circulating for at least ten years. Now Mudbelly Cooper announces that there definitely is natural gas! And there's a law almost ready for signing that stipulates that "100% of all natural resources is due to the inhabitants of Curaçao."
Cooper may be enthusiastic about our golden future, but there already is a glut on the market.
I for one would be satisfied if they just abolished taxes now. What to do with the guys who work for that hated institute? Well, let 'em rot in their crummy building; they don't do too much anyway. Go on paying 'em, just don't hire new ones. (Dream on...)
Laws Are for Suckers
The government has installed a new director of Curoil. Too bad he wasn't the candidate proposed by SBTNO, which controls this sort of stuff. Matter of fact, Lasten who got the job was described as "missing the relevant work experience and knowledge of and experience in the energy sector." So who cares? Shorty likes him better.
Now for years of court cases and in-fights and wasted money. Shorty once again has just trampled on the law, it doesn't apply to him.
Contrary to Amigu di Tera's expectations, and ours, the concrete foundations of the old wind generators have been demolished. Problem is, the concrete rubbish has not been gotten rid of in the landfill, but was just dumped in a protected area at a few kilometers' distance.
CTB tourist board was supposed to get 10 million guilders from the government but panic sets in: not a penny yet. CTB blames it on the country's budget deficit. Whatever gave them that idea?
Free Education—You Pay
WhirlyWiels may say that as from next year education will be free but the schools haven't heard about it yet. As pupil registration for next year has started already, parents will have to pay up. They'll get their money back when the schools receive it from the government. If and when, that is.
Botikas Go to Court
Notwithstanding the delay till September, the botikas and medicine importers will go to court protesting the higher prices. We don't need to repeat all their arguments, but it is totally ridiculous that our local despots try to stipulate the prices for foreign exporters.
What caught our attention is that the botikas complain that one of the reasons toyal medicine costs are so high is that there is a flight to the exterior of drugs, freely supplied to P.P.-kaart [free medicine welfare] holders.
Like a Bulldozer, And Just As Smart
The government is staying together (at least until next week-end.) Wiels tells everybody that they have installed an evaluation committee to report on 15 points that still have to be accomplished. I won't bore you with details; the real reason of course is to go on with looting and snatching as long as they can.
Gee, they certainly love those committees. Gee, I wonder how much you get paid as a committee member.
Wiels Stumps On
Although the Raad van Advies advisory council has reported negatively on the 80-20 measure, saying it's not only unconstitutional but also superfluous, WhirlyWiels announces it will be in the ministerial council next week, anyway. Nothing can stop this great little man from pushing through whatever has got hold of his brain. Such as it is, yeah right.
To refresh your memory, 80-20 stands for 80 percent of workers have to be Yu'i Korsow, no matter if nobody knows what that mythical creature is—except for one thing: they're black.
We Grow Smaller
Bad news for the government. The negative growth, which of course means shrink, of the economy this year is now estimated at -0.1%, which in turn means less tax will come in. Try that one on for size.
Further, MFK Jamaloodin couldn't answer a single question about the country's finances in a satisfactory manner.
A bit premature perhaps, but letter-to-the-Amigoe-ed. writer Robert Schnogg points out that lots of big
criminalsbusinesses have sponsored PM Shorty and his gang to grab power and then start working for them. But now it looks like Shorty, because of his cocksureness, may fail to deliver; in which case those sponsors may be out for revenge. Even if that's not so, he'll be flat down and out. Good!
PAR Sulvaran remarks that there has not been a public tender, as stipulated by law, for the Kranshi building. He mentions several other reasons to make him say the affair stinks of corruption. "If that's so I'll have you all locked up," he told PS minister Trinidad in parliament.
By now, things have gone so far that we actually hope he discovers corruption and gets 'em locked up. But Trinidad made it known some days later that no agreement has been signed and that he still has to decide if the project will go through.
There We Go Again
Yesterday those masters of statistical lies, CTB tourist bureau, proudly announced that tourism had gone up with 11% in the first three months of this year. Today we hear the hotels complain that, while occupation was about 80% in that period (not bad but not particularly good for a high season including karnaval) in April and May it went down to 65-70%, and CHATA hotel association expects this to go on for four months.
CHATA gripes that STB counts every visitor as a tourist; they must have been reading up on this site.
Kranshi civil registry will not move, as for now, to the new disputed location. Reason? They could not get it planned; time was much too short. So they wanted to extend their old contract with three months, but the owner wanted no part of that: A full year or nothing.
Our question now is, when will they start paying the exorbitant rent for that new location?
And another question, when will we learn more about Monky's letter to the governor?
Cheap Medicine Delay
Botikas may sell their present stock for the old (higher) prices until September 1. A spark of reason. Problem is, now the government must find a couple of million guilders elsewhere. You say they're not worried, they won't be around by then anymore? Let's hope you're right.
The Cops Are Hungry
Now it's the
pigspolice! There's no money to pay them overtime: the cash box is empty. All kidding aside, a cop who takes his job seriously has to be ready at all times to be shot at, spit and kicked upon. Lacle, a union functionary, wouldn't be surprised if there's "financial mismanagement." Would you? We're not, either.
No Way, Baby
Dutch minister Spies emphasized it once again, so even the dumbshits our Great Leaders would understand. Only she narrowed it down to less than one quarter of the time: 1.5 weeks from now, the country finances have to be cleaned up. Or Else. That's not a threat, it just states the simple facts, ma'am.
Tune in by, okay, give them some richly undeserved leeway—July 1 instead of September 1?
Turns out, it's gonna be this week. As politicians, unlike we, enjoy free week-ends that should be Friday 07-06.
Three Top Crooks had a meeting at MAN Mudbelly Cooper's home (also there PS Whirls and PM MFK Shorty) with the result the coalition will not splinter. Hey, I'm psychic! But one good thing resulted, education will be free. Digging their own future graves, yet.
Wiels Mails Black
This is quite in accordance with the infamous 80-20
law direction—whatever: PS WhirlyWiels threatens that it's thanks to him that Shorty and Jamaloodin have not been arrested yet, and that if they dissolve the government, they "will be arrested when they walk down the stairs of the governor's palace." If this is true, they should be arrested right now, so why hasn't that happened? Oh, forgot; Wiels is justice minister Wilsoen's bomba. Think it over, Wiels (if you can think at all): you're an accomplice during the act and should be arrested as well.
A Piece of Spies's Mind
Dutch minister Spies told Shorty's Gang [of Forty Thieves] where it's at. Shorty wants to end the consensus laws between the Kingdom and Curaçao, because of PS Wilsoen's acts in the Bientu affair; Spies holds this is legally impossible. More discussions will follow during the Kingdom Come conference. She announced that Dutch justice minister van Opstelten will explain to Wilsoen the facts of life. Our advice: speak slowly.
Spies also warned Shorty that the CBCS Central Bank affair should be solved, as the current state scares foreign investors away. She stated she assumes the Curaçao government takes itself seriously. That's some assumption!
For our English readers (we know they're lurking out there—hi, y'all!), please note that "Spies" rhymes with "piece", not "lies".
Staten parliament has approved a Vote of Disapproval for MFK sinister Jamaloodin, if that's the correct term for afkeuring—never even knew such a thing existed; other possible translations are "condemnation" or "rejection." No matter what the exact meaning, we second the motion! (The term in Dutch for the real thing is motie van wantrouwen.) Now, it's up to Jamaloodin to decide whether he will go on warming his plush seat or take his leave, like a decent fellow would. Betcha that's beyond him and that everybody counts on that.
A PAR motion of wantrouwen" [distrust] that would have forced Jamaloodin to go was rejected. But rumors have been confirmed by PAR that MFK PM Shorty has approached his arch-enemy on a possible new coalition. These advances have been firmly rejected; or so PAR tells us.
In case you wondered, no, Jamaloodin didn't take the not-so-subtle hint.
Just wish I could have been there in parliament today, must have been a riot. First MFK Jamaloodin came late, then after an abusive tirade he left again. Tomorrow, the coalition partners will meet, but alas, PS Wiels after denouncing them as "thieves" declared, for the sake of the Curaçao people he wouldn't allow the cabinet to fall (I told you so): that would result in Holland
interfering"invading, leading to a bloodbath." Don't worry on my behalf.
Jamaloodin certainly had a point when he wondered why he was the one who was blamed for the wretched state of the nation's finance. On the other hand, as minister he is the one who catches it.
No Such Luck
It was tittered and tweeted and what-have-you, even published in the media: "the government has fallen!"—alas, not so; but even PM Shorty admits there's a crisis, "but no fracture." Whatever that means? It means that, exactly as I predicted (it wasn't hard) they will try to glue the splintered coalition back together as long as they see a glimmer of hope there's more to be had.
The announced demo on Wilhelminaplein attracted a "couple of hundred" participants, but may have been unneeded already. Let's hope for the best.
There are rumors that PM Shorty's MFK is sick of the coalition and would want to end it, especially because of PS WhirlyWheels. Don't believe this rosy dream! As long as the Gang of Robbers can take more money out, they will continue to do so. There's the rub.
In That Case...
Tomorrow, MFK finance minister Jamaloodin will finally make his appearance in parliament (if he doesn't have to go on a trip.) His explanations are desired about the budget deficits. But MFK president Thodé thinks him the best finance minister we've ever had. Granted, that may not be saying much. Thodé claims 20 million less has been spent than was on the budget, without specifying. Then comes the clincher: the start of the country Curaçao was awful, with a deficit of 1.8 million guilders; so "the best finance minister we ever had" managed to multiply that by a factor 100 in a matter of 2.5 years.
Can't help wondering how the PPP Rent-a-Guru will handle all this.
Shorty's Gotcha Moment
PM Shorty has been bragging that he had arranged for a $2 PdVSA discount per gallon of oil products for Curaçao. Turns out, as usual he didn't know what he was talking about; it was a $0.02 "import charge" because Isla refinery was out of order that we would have to pay, but which PdVSA scratched.
PNP Davelaar noticed, because it would have resulted in substantially lower gas and diesel fuel plus electricity tariffs; instead, prices went up. As it now turns out, Curaçao has been paying exactly the same price from before June 2010, when crude oil went for about USD70/barrel. So much for the "monthly adaptation to world market prices." Good for Davelaar; but why did it take him so long?
Shorty can't even lie without being caught out, the first thing a politician should learn.
PS tells us that the things promised to the Curaçao people must be fulfilled, no matter what Cft says: MFK should learn about the trias politica (look who's talking—let it go). After hours of murky blahblah we're surprised to learn what those promises are: new hospital - free education - 80/20 - old age welfare of ANG1000 - general illness insurance.
But Cft explicitly advises against building a new hospital before budget matters have been satisfactorily arranged.
The kids are almost ready to go on to high school, but nobody knows yet if it will be free, as parents tend to think, or not. Even if it will be free, pupils will still have to pay for their own books. Probably. Nobody knows for sure, because PS Monky, who had promised next year education would be free, shuts up like a clam.
We Bate Our Breath
Again, PS Arsjes threatened to have MFK Rozier thrown out of Staten parliament, after Rozier again called Arsjes a buffoon. PAR Atacho remarked that last time, when MFK minister Jamaloodin couldn't appear in parliament because he supposedly was in the USA, he still managed to be seen at a café near the
Forty Thieves' Grottogovernment seat.
Or maybe it was his half brother Luigi dos Santos, who is Robbie dos Santos' full brother Robbie, coïncidentally, was arrested the same day. It is not known whether Jamaloodin also is a suspect in the Bientu affair.
Arsjes assured us, just like last time, that Rozier's name-calling will not appear in the minutes. You bet, Arsjes wouldn't like that.
Could Be Worse, Could Be Better
The pollution caused by Isla refinery in 2011 has been below the internationally accepted standards. Even Smoc accepts this, but does remark that measurements occasionally exceeded those standards and also that the refinery was shut down for a large part of the year.
Fisticuffs? Not Quite—Yet
MFK Rozier didn't agree with PS Arsjes in parliament and talked down to him using words like papa, payaso and idiot [daddy-o, buffoon, and -you got it- idiot]. For some reason, Arsjes didn't like it and threatened to have Rozier removed by the police; but Rozier left on his own. The battle between MFK and PS continued, causing PSP Davelaar to ask if the coalition still had a parliament majority.
Reason for the flare-up was that PM Shorty has instructed the governement-owned companies not to report directly to parliament but to the short dictator in person. For once we have to agree with Arsjes that this makes the cabinet the highest authority, not parliament (which must really hurt Arsjes as its president.)
Sure, Shorty, Sure
Shorty states that there's no problem with meeting Cft's requirements. Not at all, not to worry folks, Shorty will take care of it; there is no financial crisis at all, just look: civil servants' salaries are paid out complete with holiday allowance! But medicine costs must go down and specialists earn too much. Sure, by September 1 everything will be fine. Shorty also blamed
Bushthe former government for the problems.
Who was it again who called this guy a "pathological liar"? Many do by now. But his minister Jamaloodin also said it was no crisis, merely a serious situation.
Sick of Wiels
Everybody, even his coalition partners, is good and disgusted with PS Whirly Wiels, who is only criticizing everybody without accomplishing anything himself (not too much difference there, but okay, we get it.) MFK Jamaloodin even refers darkly to the fact there are too many man-loving men in the PS party. And I here thinking we all were so gay friendly to attract tourists!
No More Medicine
In July, apothecaries will run out of medicines. So there.
Quack Constancia doesn't yield 1 mm: she even tries to force exporters to Curaçao to lower their prices. Lots of luck with that, but typical for her obstinate self-deceitful attitude. It's not entirely her fault, admittedly; her boss Shorty doesn't have any idea how to cut down those 85M, and this alone means 47M. We wonder, though, if the Cft will go along with it; hopefully not.
We do wonder what happened to the botikas' plan to go to court.
Update:the botikas claim that there will be "a serious shortage" for several types of medicine this month; that they can't sell their stocks, bought at present prices, with a profit after July 1; and that they do consider a court action.
Cut Down to Size
We now know more about what Cft financial supervision wants. It's an interesting, not to say fascinating little list, which should result in 85M guilders less spent this year:
— less money must be spent on healthcare and pensions
— the number of civil servants must go down (hear hear!)
— the government's income must go up
(we feel they've got more than's good for them already)
— as for the new hospital, first structural problems must be solved
like healthcare system and indexing of tariffs
— government must draft a plan to fight deficit of government-owned companies
total between 500-600M guilders. Here's my plan: Get rid of them!
— CFT will not accept any results of taken measures in the budget before they are actually paying off.
She Forgot to Tell Them
Parke Tropikal, a modest attempt at a local zoo, has been reopened and will be integrated with the neighboring Kabouterbos, (where the gnomes hang out.) Last time we heard, quack minister Constancia was planning to replace the location with a water catching dam, without telling the park about it. Apparently, she still hasn't done so; this government's idea of guidance.
Boudino de Jong is working on a thesis (subject "Future of the Isla refinery") and asks us all to spend three minutes on filling out a form on what we think about it.
The governor asked Monky for a letter detailing the Kranshi machinations, before 23 May. Maybe Monky did so, in which case by now it seems reasonable to let us partake in his wise words. But the governor keeps mum. And, after all, time is short: the whole warong is supposed to move 6 weeks from now.
Cft [financial supervision] has given Curaçao government two weeks of time to balance the budget; if not, they will take "measures"—the most powerful, and dreaded, weapon the kingdom has to force its will. MFK Jamaloodin let it be known he couldn't attend the Staten parliament meeting because of an official trip to the USA; but his dept. says it's a holiday.
Wiels found it necessary to prove, unnecessarily, that he doesn't belong in politics: he "does not recognize Ctf." I guess feelings are mutual.
Maybe the Wilhelminaplein demonstration will be superfluous? Don't count on it.
No Floating Coffin
The Dutch minister of offense has answered parliament that the Frisc rubberboat is safe for use in the Caribbean. After the last tests the construction has been changed and the safety prescriptions have been adapted. So that's what now makes the boat safe?
Transparency Back in Town
The interviews held for the parlamentaire enquête committee will not be made public, because those interviewed after reading them may then "adapt their stories" says Arsjes. What disgraceful bunkum; how like him and the rest of that gang of crooks.
lesson in Papiamentu
My! You're a good pupil!
found at a trade union meeting
Hope for the Best
SOAB is out, replaced by SBTNO. The acronym is one character longer, maybe it's even better! The function is more or less the same: giving the ministers and the government independent asked and unasked for advice and supervising government companies and foundations. Our best of luck to SBTNO.
A Fat Lot of Use
Wednesday 13 June 17:00 we're invited for one more demonstration on Wilhelminaplein, where our Great Leaders park their well-nourished seats. This time it's to protest as "worried state partner" against the criminalization of our government. This because Dutch minister Spies will be here then because of the worrisome budget deficits. I won't be there, but don't let that stop you! It won't keep you off the streets, that's for sure.
This appeal is by Ruben Suriel, 669-0470
Plagiarism Is The Greatest Compliment?
That may be so, but I still resent it. After last year's imitator, now it's Miguel Goede who has started a blog "Het Circusje" [the little circus] in Dutch, with many more mistakes than even my English contains. Coming from the ex-UNA rector, who was illegally fired by our government, that's downright embarrassing.
While I grudgingly grant Goede the benefit of the doubt, last week Radio Paradise FM published a photo ripped off this site without bothering to mention the source, and didn't even reply to my email pointing it out. Or correct it, are you kidding?
Let's Have a Lottery
Here's an idea! With all those travels our great Leaders undertake, they must collect lots of air miles. As they cannot even use them (they're much too busy traveling while we pay their tickets), I submit they transfer 'em to a fund and run a lottery. Winners can make the flight of their dreams and the price of the tickets will go to some noble charity.
I'm sure Robbie dos Santos would be interested in handling the details.
PM Shorty has promised us that the Isla refinery problems will finally be decided upon "within six months". We'll see about that. There's only one small question, where to find the Third Party? He suggests China, but China is starting to slide down the slippery slope of economics just as everybody else. But not to worry, Shorty assures: even if by then no such third
suckerparty is found, he will not shut the refinery down.
While not liking predictions, we confidently predict Shorty will make even a lot more trips the coming months. At least, he does not have to worry about leg room in those cramped seats, especially as he won't be flying economy class; not he.
No Second Weekly Air Berlin Flight
After Air Berlin has been flying Düsseldorf-CUR since November 2011, there have been negotiations about their opening a second weekly flight. However, CTB and Hato airport refuse to give Air Berlin more guarantees, yet. (Air Berlin has had a seat occupation of 80-85%.)
Tourists Get Protection
After a robbery in a jewelry store in the Renaissance tourist center, sheikh el Hakim announces a new special police unit (whatever) to protect the tourists. Justice minister Wilsoe and his interim Monky no doubt are too busy with more pressing matters.
But why are the tourists entitled to better protection than we are?
There has just been a crash in Lagos, Nigeria of a Dana Air MD83 aircraft (it came down in a crowded suburb). Question now is, could the age of the aircraft have been a factor? Even though Nigeria does not allow aircraft of over twenty years old, the average age of Dana aircraft somehow still is 21.4 years (but we all know about the Nigeria mess, which our Great Leaders seem to want to emulate.) Just like Dana, "our own" Insel Air flies MD83 or similar aircraft, but their average age is much older, 24.7 years. DAE comes off not so much better, 22.1 years. Tiara is inbetween, 23.6 years—that's one aircraft left out of the two they started with.)
And then to think that the USA FAA gives Nigeria a Number 1 grade!
My good friend Alex tells me that KLM gets rid of their planes after 25 years. The point is, do they use them for passengers or for cargo after, oh, say... twenty years? Makes a big difference, you know.
MAN Mudbelly Cooper's DOW HQ
[Public Works] Civil Engineering Dept.
Diesel will go down. Fancy that! While the crude price is at its lowest since about a year, about USD86/barrel, gasoline remains the same. When they raised the price last month, crude price was about 105-110.
The prices are adapted monthly to "world market prices"—why not daily?
We may remark in passing that both diesel oil and gasoline are made from the same crude oil, so why should one go down and the other stay up? Answer: mini-bus drivers have been taken action.
Now that Dutch parliament and Smoc have had a day or so to study the Ecorys document, more and more questions come up.
Ecorys claims the refinery will form 9% of Curaçao GDP with 1500 workers, but there is not a shred of proof for this; it's just a claim based on no analysis. Country economy dept DEZ estimates yearly proceeds of ANG400M, but according to Smoc island income will remain the same after upgrading.
Smoc also finds fault with the idea to upgrade to natural gas as fuel for electricity generation; the presently used crude oil and asphalt are much cheaper. (This seems totally unpredictable at this point with the developing USA gas glut.)
In the fight about the Isla oil refinery: Keep it or get rid of it? let us throw a view on our sister island of Aruba, where the oil refinery has had ups and downs since Exxon left. Now it's closed again; maybe the Chinese will buy it, maybe not, but owner Valero has no present use for it. Instant result for this year: GDP may shrink with 4.2% with a projected inflation of 3.5%. And remember, tourism is much more important for Aruba than for us.
The stench rising up from that building gets more and more intense. Holland is worried about the safety of their passports, given out by Kranshi. By the way, since November 2011 Curaçao has not paid for the passports, so that's a cool 400,000 guilders stolen by the government from us who pay up in advance, and from Holland.
Renting the new building may be 2.7 times more expensive, but some sources claim 1.4 times.
MAN president Cleopa is getting out of his party instantly, reportedly because he and others in the MAN top are disgusted by Monky's machinations; and supposedly because MAN coalition members do not raise their voices against that.
(But why did it take them so long?) The government has been advised by Ecorys that the best thing to do with Isla refinery is to upgrade. One small problem... Besides PdVSA, a third partner must be found. Price estimate a cool USD3G (3 billion dollars); and we get a niggling USD15M/year in rent. Demolition is now estimated at ANG250M-1.7G; rather a wide range.
SMOC is surprised because only last year Ecorys reported that upgrading was no option.
What with these clowns' capers, unavoidably the position of the Antillean guilder is getting weaker and weaker. People are starting to sit up and notice, internationally. And those fools here blaming bank director Tromp for everything.
Governor Speaks Out: About Time
Governor Goedgedrag asks Monky a few questions about the planned move of Kranshi to Martinus College. "Planned" is hardly the word, it's supposed to take place two months from now but nobody knows a thing about it. The present rent paid is ANG56K/month, but the new building will cost more than twice as much; this and some other small and neglectable details Goedgedrag characterizes as "excessive". PS Monky claims it's gonna be rent to own, but that expression is not even mentioned in the documents presented. Former DP Norbert George on his Facebook page claims the rent went up from 100K/month to 125K/month, just like that. Oh, did I mention the building will be rented from a PS member?
Governor Goedgedrag wants a reply before May 23rd. We wouldn't mind getting one today.
The much touted Parlementaire Enquête (the committee to look into the VDK affair) may shortly commence its work, expecting to report on November 30. However, as VDK director Gumbs, IT manager Winklaar or crisis manager Calmero will not be interviewed, PAR feels that this is incomplete and will not participate.
We must admit PAR has a point; interviewing of those guys seems to essential and if skipped, the whole investigation becomes a farce. Which may be exactly the idea; in fact it's so obvious I am not wasting any more words on it.
The committee was chosen and chief VDK Gumbs will be interviewed. It is not clear from the media if PAR forms part of it.
Join the Club
Dutch parliament feels misled, and so are we, by Shorty's much too optimistic reassurances about the Curaçao government finances. Dutch minister Spies will have Cft "instruct the Curaçao government" how to balance the 2012 budget and remarks the stage of dialogue is just about past. It's clear that Holland has not a grain of confidence left in Shorty and his gang's financial discipline.
We can only hope this will bring results you'd notice. After all, we knew it since way back when.
Anonymous Email, This Time about Isla
Yet another anonymous email, claiming to be written by Isla refinery workers, complains about director Medina. The refinery is a mess: an organizational chaos, there are many oil, gas and acid leaks, jobs are given away at higher prices to selected companies, and Medina himself is an alcoholic.
Medina denies it all, of course and mentions how social Isla really is; didn't they help out with the 2009 earthquake? Huh? What 2009 earthquake? Maybe he really is an alcoholic!
It's not quite clear if the email is really anonymous, thank our poor media.
The Dutch government, just like us, was scared out of their underwear by the news about the Curaçao budget. But, not like voting cattle us, they can do something about it and they're threatening an algemene maatregel van rijksbestuur - a technical term boiling down to [general measure of kingdom governance] - come right down to it, "we'll tell you how to behave."
And that's what they're gonna do. Could there be a righteous god, after all?
Free Water Dilemma
In international law, the availability of clean drinking water is a human right; which doesn't mean it has to be free. But in 2010, the judge decided that Aqualectra utility as a government monopoly cannot refrain from making it available to the poor; if necessary, free.
Hear the screams: "But that eats into our profits! If only we hadn't stopped StIP..."
The judge has decided that Isla refinery can go on polluting as always. The government does not have to send Isla a handhavingsbrief [letter to uphold] normalization of the polluted exhaust. This essentially is a turn-back of the last verdict, upon an appeal by the government.
It means that, after seven years of court fights, the refinery can continue polluting to its black heart's content.
Accountant Held Accountable
Accountant Hernandez has been paid millions of guilders in the past few years by the government to write reports on several affairs. Those reports resulted in great problems for the people involved. The Dutch Accountantskamer has now sentenced Hernandez to totally nine months of suspension (and a rebuke).
This gives the injured parties reason to sue Hernandez, and the government, for compensation.
Parties are De Lannoy and Augustin Diaz of Curaçao Port Authority, and rector magnificus of UNA university De Goede who has been forced out of his function there.
The UNWTO has appointed Mugabe (yes, the guy from Zimbabwe) as one of their "international tourism ambassadors." Do we have to say tourism to Zimbabwe is hitting an all-time low these years?
Exactly what we need here! Oh wait, we already have such a thing.
UNWTO - UN World Tourism Organization. Members include North Korea, Syria and Zimbabwe; on its 32-member governing board are Zimbabwe, Russia, Saudi Arabia and Iran.
Monk Turns and Twists His Tail
First PS education minster Monky announced final exams for high schools would become heavier, without any intermediary yearly steps (as applied in Holland and the other islands); now he comes and says these will be applied here. But his promises of compensation for book costs are retracted. Teachers are mad; "of course there's no money for that" they say, and "this gives a strong impression there is no policy and no vision"—amen to that.
MFK Jamaloodin made a deal with the casinos on their taxes in 2010: they will pay less and less taxes until 2014 (total ANG28M). But over 2010 the real take was only 4M of the expected 10. Put that in your budget and smoke it.
Some twenty or more years ago, there was a roundabout at Biesheuvel traffic junction. It was a disaster. Everybody was so glad when they got rid of it! and replaced it with a regular crossing, traffic lights and all. But times have changed and, with it, fashions, so now again they are replacing intersections with roundabouts. After all, there's money in them thar roundabouts!
Gee, I Wonder
Staten parliament has now started a Parlementaire Enquête (investigation) on VDA, VDK; and en passant also the OM (attorney general] and RST. That last item is new and was not included in the vote for such an investigation. All parties are supposed to nominate their candidates for membership.
Gee, I wonder how much they pay those committee members.
These Clowns Are Good!
PS Wilsoen was mad because the Dutch Washington ambassador had "interfered" in the Bientu affair. Turns out, the USA public prosecutor didn't know what to do about Wilsoen's request and asked the ambassador for advice; he then got "factual information."
Now, the Dutch government is "bewildered" even more by Monk's follow-up letter to the USA and is contemplating a "sturdy reaction".
Newspaper Antilliaans Dagblad reports on a discourse of Bas Kooijman for VBC entrepreneurs club in which he repreatedly emphasized that Curaçao has been on a wrong course for the past two years.
Right below it, the newspaper prints a photo of PM Shorty cutting up a cake to celebrate his MFK party's second anniversary. No, not this cake.
The 17m high Coast Guard hangar in construction at Hato airport will now become only half that high, so traffic control can retain their view on the landing strip from the tower.
Two questions remain: What fool gave the building permit, and Why was that building so ridiculously high; obviously not necessary. The answer to that is easy: (Dutch) taxpayers' money. But this is at least a real solution.
Monk Does His Part
Bomba Wiels sends all his players, including reserves into the game. Now it turns out Monk, minister of education but also interim justice has sent one more letter to the US government. All to no avail. Wow, must those guys be frustrated; a pleasure to watch 'em frolicking.
Skein Bo Webu
Is what we used to call schijnbeweging [feint] at school—dirty little pun, heh heh. But that's what Arsjes and Shorty are working on, throwing up lots of dust accusing RTS and UTS (a pox on those acronyms!) of spying on honest citizens (like politicians?) by tapping their phones. Has to do with VNA, VDK and AIVD and even BVD [a pox on those acronyms!] Maybe it's even true, who knows or even cares?
RTS seems to be taken aback by the allegations, which is not surprising.
RTS: Recherche Samenwerkings Team [detection coöperation team]
Trouble for Trinidad
Screening for PS minister candidate Trinidad still hasn't been finished. Seems here's another guy with a tax debt of nearly 1 million guilders; they certainly know how to pick them. Wiels announces Trinidad will be sworn in this week, but we knew all about his big mouth already.
Trinidad would be number 4 in 16 months after Rosalia, Jansen and Monk.
The day after he came back empty handed from the USA, PS Wilsoen delivered another letter to the Attorney General, stating that the action against Robbie dos Santos was contrary to the so-called Inkeerregeling; one of the first laws the present government passed where negligient tax payers were offered to come in and confess without any disagreeable consequences (like, having to pay up like us decent folks have done all the time.)
Another clumsy act; everybody immediately jumped to the AHA! conclusion that the law was written specifically to accommodate Robbie dos Santos (who financed MFK). Wilsoen claimed only the Tax Person could initiate such a proceeding, but people who actually seem to know something of the law say he's completely wrong; the Tax Person can ask the AG to initiate one but the AG can always initiate any investigation he wants to. Also, Bientu started rolling in 2008, long before the Inkeerregeling existed.
Pun in Dutch, oen means fool, dunce.
Less PP Patients
About 1500 persons have been deleted from the list of PP patients, who get completely free medical care, saving ANG7M-9M per year. Before we start thinking this government does any good, after all, consider that this happened in 2009-2010, before independence.
Voice of Reason
PAIS member Rosaria remarks the importers, drugstores, Rosaria and, not to forget, us that the best way to make an import cheaper is to allow parallel import from cheaper sources by other importers. It has all been made possible by law and been tested in court.
This already happens but the parallel agents just pocket the extra profits. Example: Vicks Inhaler can be bought on the market for prices up to $9, but can be bought in India for $0.55 and sold here for the same price as the USA product, which is an exorbitant profit margin. There are more examples. After all, the agents form one select club and have long since turned the island into a mining-town-like economy, where you are paid by the same guy you buy your food from.
Up Gets Us Down
Electricity price is going up with 8 cents/kWH—back to the level of a year ago, when PM Shorty forced Aqualectra to lower the price. This supposedly is because of the "higher fuel prices." However, in May 2011 crude oil price was USD114; now it's only USD92. Which means Aqualectra's price should be lowered to about 61 cents/kWH.
Not so coïncidentally, CBS statistics figured the inflation over the past year at 4%.
Druggies Will Sue
The medicine importers and the drugstores will go to court if Constancia doesn't see reason and withdraw her much-too-drastic measures.
You can't help wondering how many more of these surprises we will get. The Robber Gang wanted to take the 160M negative surplus over 2011, against all agreements, out of the BRK. However and but, 40M of that will only become available later this year. Further, the 2011 tax yield is 48M lower than bargained for.
Just mentioning in passing that here's 256 million gone, in one year, over 1700 guilders for each of us—money spent like crazy drooling kids in a candy store.
This year, those crooks figure on a 32.7M positive shortage (heh heh); next year 5.1M. We'll see... We'll see. Wanna bet it'll be less? (Good advice: don't do it!)
Soon, No Budget Left
Things go on like this, the future years the government will have no money at all left to spend on us pain-in-the-neck citizens. First, the "negative surplus" was only ANG40M (remember, that was a year in which we were supposed to have a real, positive, surplus of 96M!) but it has already grown to 160M in 2011, our first proud year of independence. The Dutch are worried, and so are we.
But then again, we saw it coming from the very start, way before 10-10-10.
Sheikh el Hakim has "made it possible" to offer cheap fruits and vegetables, also from local growers, which he claims "proves" that better quality can be offered for lower prices. We'll let you know when we see any results; so don't expect more bulletins on this matter from us.
Justice minister Wilsoe, back from his fruitless trip, is whining that the Dutch ambassador has influenced the USA authorities not to follow up on his illegal efforts to have the dos Santos funds released. He's grousing everybody was yelling their heads off in protest when he violated the trias politica, but now they're "quiet as a mouse."
We can't expect Wilsoen, a mere peon of Wiels, to know and understand the fine points of the law; but while the ambassador may have gone out of his way to interfere in Curaçao business (he hasn't, it's our ambassador as well!) what would that have to do with the trias politica?
Aruba Security Story
In 1996 the Aruba attorney general was fired and the police top replaced. This had to do with the VDA [Aruba security] "researching too deeply" in the community. Undesirable political connections seemed to be getting uncovered. The (Dutch) kingdom government placed VDA under direct Dutch rule; sounds familiar? While the navy safeguarded the relevant archives and speedily transported the service head to Holland, VDA was taken over by Dutch predecessor of AIVD in conjunction with MID [military intelligence]. But AIVD's 2004 Handboek Integriteitsonderzoek [manual for integrity investigation] has never been commonly introduced.
The story, told by former AVD-head John de Vries was published by Radio Nederland Wereldomroep.
Curaçao bakeries are sick and tired of not hearing from the government (it's been nine months now) and will decide upon higher bread prices this week-end. Quite illegal, yes; but the minister of economic stagnation (sheikh el Hakim) just doesn't respond; no doubt he has more urgent matters to attend to. So there.
Then again, while these guys say they're losing money and have to close, Chinese bakeries and mini-markets sell their bread for a lower price and seem to make a profit.
Minister of Illness Constancia has declined financial help from Holland. Only if they offer money for the new hospital, she'll accept. There must be something wrong with her head; yeah, we knew that already, how else would she be a minister in this government?
It's almost, but not really funny: behind the forced medicine price lowering is that the government will thus save, at least attempt to, 47M guilders.
Isla Oil to Iran
Notwithstanding our proxy minister in Holland's statements, it's official: PdVSA has been fined for shipping Curaçao-processed gasoline to Iran. Shipments to other destinations are re-routed once at sea to arrive in Iran, in spite of international sanctions.
There are allegedly more shady deals between Curaçao-registered Schlumberger with headquarters in Texas, PdVSA, National Iranian Oil Company (NIOC) and Petropars Ltd., an Iranian oil and gas service company.
Eye Ops Back
PM Shorty came back with an idea that was a total flop six years ago: Poor people may go to Venezuela to get their eyes operated upon, free; and to get free glasses there as well. Curaçao eye doctors warned that nobody knows anything about the conditions under which these operations are done, not even where and by whom, and again stated that eye care here is excellent.
A doctor also declared that the 9 Optica Hakim stores, owned by the minister, would no doubt feel the effects if everybody got their glasses free.
U Know Where UU Can Put It
A US court of justice has decided not to release the Robbie dos Santos funds, disregarding PS Wilsoe completely.
What has always been considered a windfall, to be applied to education and economic development, to wit: the Belasting Regeling Koninkrijk [kingdom tax regulation] will be used to cover the "negative budget surplus" (to keep in style). Naturally, the newspapers omit to tell us how much this is, but it's sufficient to cover 2011 (163.4M), 2012 (32.7M) and 2013 (5.1M). The last two years is what they say now, but don't put any trust in them. We were supposed to have a positive balance that first year of independence, 2011.
Needless? to say, Cft is not enthusiastic. PM Shorty has announced lots of measures, refusing to call them that; most of those entail the social health services. He refuses to accept that Curaçao is in a financial-economic crisis, but that wouldn't bother him anyway.
Shorty's government rented a guru to tell us what to do about Curaçao's future. His first appearance sounds like a pep-talk: we have to look at PPP (people, planet and... poop? forget my own name next... o yes, prosperity.) In October a complete plan will be ready! Then we'll have a "Longer Term Strategy for the Durable Economic Development of Curaçao" and that means in 2025 "a higher standard of living to stimulate citizens to keep developing themselves and their country, all based on decent governance, durable social-economic developments and education." Sounds great! Who could possibly disagree?
There have been more of these sages around the last years; they're getting to be a regular pest. First, 2001, we had Vishón Kòrsou and in 2010 another one, I forget. So has everybody; oh, here he is. Gee, I wonder how much they pay those guys! Where they find them is easier to answer, look under flat stones.
This latest pundit is professor Charles Cambridge of California State University Chico. His ratings: out of 5 an average 2.675—just above mediocre.
We, for years and years, have been paying 20 guilders monthly for our Selikor service. All of a sudden, the date for this has been advanced from the 15th to the 9th. They must be short of cash?
Saga Turns Soap
Those poor guys in the USA must be wondering what to do with all those contradictory instructions they get from Curaçao about dos Santos. First, our attorney general Piar sends them a request to freeze accounts; then justice minister Wilsoe asks them to unfreeze them; then the attorney states that Wilsoe is all wrong and is denying facts (proof of which has been published in the media); and at that time, Wilsoe suddenly disappears to the USA for two weeks. For private matters (guess that's
true enoughall too true.)
After Civil Registry Kranshi moved some ten years ago to a building the other side of the bridge, they are again getting ready for the same act. (To my recollection, the rent they paid was ANG7M/year.) Now, it will move to a school building—which has just been bought by lawyer Marius Römer for a group that, for now, prefers to remain unknown. Römer is well known as a supporter of FOL-Godett, though.
PS sinister Sonk says there's nothing unclear about the deal. It's the media that make it sound unclear. Well, it's unclear to us; maybe Monk can clear it up? Please?
Money to Waste
Curaçao Airport Holding want to start using solar panels for electricity (not wise but who are we to judge?) and will buy fifty electric cars. However, these will not be charged with solar power. Why not? Because Aqualectra sees a market for charging stations distributed over the island. A technical school will "monitor" the electric cars.
First question is: Does CAH have the money for all this and much more? How much of that is coming out of the airport tax?
Second question: What would be the price per kW Aqualectra would charge for charging?
One kWH is the equivalent of 3.60*l06 Joule; 1 liter of gasoline ~ 34.7*l06 Joule. Put it like this: 1 liter of gasoline, price now ANG 2.48 replaces 9.64kWH for which Aqualectra asks ANG 6.36. To spell it out, gasoline is less than half the price.
Somebody's crazy here and it's not me.
We Needed No Confirmation
Cft [committee financial supervision] insists that the ANG40M with which the 2011 (un?)-expectedly has gone into the red must be taken out of the 2012 budget. Which means that one will have to be reconsidered. Good.
But will it help any? Those -40M came as a total surprise for same Cft, even though we amateurs saw it coming all the time. What guarantee is there that the same thing won't happen next year? Or ever after?
The main problem is those government companies that we were supposed to get rid of, but which are much too handy for giving fat jobs to political
We got it all wrong: it was Jamaloodin who two weeks ago was interviewed by the cops. He's suspected of forgery and conspiring in the same bientu business. Wilsoe now complains that the attorney-general doesn't follow his orders, blaming him for 'insubordination,' 'cognizant deceit/misinformation,' 'undermining authority' and 'punishable acts'.
Makes you curious about those orders of Wilsoe's? Oh, he wants the AG to stop the bientu investigation. Which he has no business to interfere with and, according to Frielink (dean of lawyers) is reason for the AG to start a court case against Wilsoe.
We can hardly wait.
Remember, Wilsoe is a member of Wiels's team, that dumb dictator guy who walks around bragging that "his" ministers will stand any screening.
Ain't That Cute
One of the ministers has been interrogated, at home, by the police. Media info is scarce and mentions no name, but the inference is that it's in connection with the Bientu [dos Santos] affair. Then it must be Wilsoe, right; his predecessor Dick muses that Wilsoe may well have committed an offence, punishable with three years in prison, as he breached the law.
Smart Thinking in Aruba
Over there, 600 people have started protesting against more wind generators: an ugly waste of money. We don't have to state their arguments, it's getting repetitious (for now, just a reminder that in Europe's greenest country, Denmark, a kW costs about US$0.40, about ANG0.73—even more than we pay here.) Will they have success with their action? That would be a real surprise. But they have engaged a lawyer to take their case to court if the generators do come, regardless.
Meanwhile, China is casting a beady eye on AUA's refinery, shut down twice since Esso oops! Exxon left. There's money in them thar barrels, and it's hot air turning those wind generators.
Lucky Luke: The Escort
Laying down the Law
Ex Curaçao court president (and ex-governor) Jaime Saleh gives a little lesson: separation of powers in a constitutional state is of prime importance and must be maintained. Political power should have no influence on the judicial department. Hear, hear.
Reminds me of a Wodehouse joke, about 'a chappie who's been put in jail and his friend comes to visit and asks him what he's in there for and the chappie tells him and the friend says "but they can't put you in jail for that" and the chappie says "I know they can't, but they did."' (The style the Master himself told it in... how like him.)
Could he possibly mean Wilsoe versus Piar? He might as well have been thinking of PM Shorty who has ignored three discrete and separate court orders that VDK director Gumbs could not be fired. Or maybe he means still other instances... plenty more where they came from.
Remains the question, what's our present governor doing? Are the umpteen signatures in use as toilet paper in his palace?
Finally, I hope, Holland indicated in the strongest terms that Wilsoe should crawl back into his hole and not interfere with the course of justice.
More Wishful Thinking
The badly constructed government, held together by powers only agreeing on greed, seems to be falling apart. Not before we were ready for it; but for now it's still standing, albeit shaking and trembling.
PAR states that PM Shorty was lying during his statements in parliament and asks him for proof for several of his allegations, but none is given. The party gives Shorty two weeks time to stave his accusations before it will ask for a public meeting.
I'm afraid Shorty will not be impressed. But freedom-lover PS Wiels is so impressed by what the press dares to comment that he declares in a radio program that Antilliaans Dagblad editor-in-chief should be "run in and shackled." The newspaper, so declares Wiels in all his weird wisdom, is a terrorist organization.
Dutch parliament is getting a mighty interest in all this and wants a kingdom minister meeting subito.
A Whole Manure-Hole
Some makamba honkie asshole bastard who rents out rooms to interns had them park their cars on the opposite church lot, without bothering to ask the Good Shepherd. Who got fed up after a while and shut off the entrance with a chain. The afore-named cracker then took away the chain and (skipping a few story steps) had some shots at the Frocked Male. Quite out of bounds, and he's sighing in a cell now. Here's the kind of man that gives the Dutch a bad name.
On the other hand, let's not get over-excited. That whitey is a fool (on drugs? it's a thought), but he didn't use a "gun"—only a 5.5mm caliber air gun. It's all in the telling. But given the right dum-dum type pellets, these can kill.
Profit margin on medicines will be lowered from 37% to 20% leading to 15% cheaper medicine, but the importers think this is all wrong. They had offered (last December) to bring prices down with 7%, but the government (minister Constancia) didn't accept their proposal.
Next thing may be, some medicines will become unavailable because it's not worth while importing them at all. "Think it through."
MFK PM Shorty may have thought he was in the clear with his discourse on security service VDK, but it starts to look like this is the beginning of his end. Wishful thinking, to be sure. But when other parliamentaries (PAR) start calling him "a pathological liar" (we tend to agree) in public, and MFK in turn accuses PAR of having instigated the Dutch investigations and interference (that word again) it looks like there's no other solution but for this government to leave. Wishful thinking, to be sure.
Contrary to Shorty's claims, Dutch government announces VDK definitely will be reorganized with help of Dutch counterpart AIVD (hope I got it right.)
That's the only word we can find for the "solution" for a new Hato hangar, that became so high that traffic control lost sight of taxiing aircraft. Can't those guys read blueprints or what? Who designed this thing (probably the Dutch army or so)? Well, it's easy: from now on, the planes will taxi to their take-off position on the take-off/landing strip, where they can be seen from the tower. Which is dangerous and will result in up to 45 minutes' delays. And, hey look! it's not even our money that's down the drain if that thing is torn down.
Hey, how about that FAA
By the way, another item that popped up thanks to a letter-writer. What is that press finding out these days, except scanning unsolicited emails? Nothing much. True, that's nothing new.
Green & Clean
The foundations of the former 18 wind generators at Playa Kanoa are still sitting there since they've been replaced by 5 new monsters. Amigu di Teracomplains and remembers a promise that they would be used for the new ones. But how could that be in the first place?
Shorty's Strong-Man Act
After having been clowning around so long, PM Shorty now comes on as a brawny strong man (next he'll start ripping
lawtelephone books to pieces.) He claims state security AIVD with all its leaks, instigated by PAR, wanted to overthrow his government in 2010. He has stopped all VDC activities and all personnel has to remain home for the time being, while the dept. is being reorganized; but it will not be controlled by Dutch AIVD—no, it will merely be done with Dutch "help" under the AIVD's "direction" (if you understand that subtle difference, an almost classic manifestation of Un-Speak, you're smarter than I am.) He also wants a parlementaire enquête [investigation by parliament]. By all means, let's have it—we're really getting curious.
The consensus is, Strong Man Shorty is eating Humble Crow Pie and pretending it's his own recipe. PAR doesn't even deign to react to Shorty's allegations, but PS Wiels says he'll have the name of one parliament member, mysteriously alluded to by Shorty, out in the open: As it turns out, he mentions two PAR members (Dick and Jacoba)—without offering any proof. Jacoba reacts by first stating she never did so, politicians should not get involved with screening; and goes on to say there'd be nothing wrong with it. What a mess.
That would be the third such investigation asked for by this government. Maybe this one will be followed up on; PS Wiels wanted two in the past, one on the functioning of justice and one on KLM's alleged cartel activities but no more has been heard on those.
Wilsoe Back in Town
After two days of holding himself incommunicado, so nobody could ask him difficult questions, MFK justice minister Wilsoe suddenly started calling newspapers. He told them their stories didn't hold water; he had not tried to intervene with judicial process in the USA, adding that he couldn't do that if he wanted to (he's right there at least.) Alas, he omitted to tell them the version that, according to him, was correct.
He also said that he followed the course set by his conscience. Right: two days later Antilliaans Dagblad printed a copy of the letter with which he had interfered. Another "pathological liar" led by his conscience.
About a week later, Wilsoe fired attorney general Piar.
No Such Luck
Hato manager Adriaens concedes what we knew all the time: the FAA will not turn the airport's degradation around before 2013. Personnel has to be trained before FAA will even come check to consider. One result is that InselAir cannot fly to Miami; no mention is made of the effects on the Space Gang's ambitious plans.
MAN Cooper first announced the FAA would re-upgrade Hato in December 2011; then he said "mid 2012." Now, not even a month is mentioned. The downgrade dates from September last year. Adriaens praises Cooper to the sky for doing such a good job, but it's hard to agree.
We were not aware of this, but one more item has joined the long list of PM Shorty's alleged misdeeds that mark him as a "totally unreliable and mendacious person" (George Lichtveld's letter to Amigoe editor): Lichtveld mentions obscure plans of Shorty in conjunction with v.d. Dijs and compromised Haïtian president Martelly.
Yawn... Not Interested?
An inquiry among 241 people (no way of judging if this is a sound sample) showed that 77% was aware of Frente Sivíl's actions, but "only" 41% felt those three MFK guys have to step down. 39% wants new elections and 60% doesn't. So there we are—nowhere. Well, not absolutely nowhere, no matter how inquirers and media interpret it: there's an awful lot of discontent.
It's only now I realize that the party name MFK Movementu Futuro Kòrsou has been well chosen: our future is starting to look like our past, only more so.
A pretty unique act: the minister of justice gets personally involved and does what usually, habitually, is done by the public prosecutor. Wilsoe has written to his USA counterpart and requests to release the Robbie dos Santos funds that have been seized there. While Wilsoe's act isn't exactly illegal, it's very much out of step and thwarts the ongoing investigation. But then again, dos Santos and Wilsoe are MFK family members.
Dutch parliament and cabinet were taken aback by Wilsoe's action as well, calling it "bizarre."
About 3/4 of the 140 candidates who wished to get the Dutch nationality ignominiously failed their exam. They couldn't make out the admittedly ugly but still rich and thus notoriously hard to master, language at all.
In all reasonableness, they probably spoke and understood Papiamentu pretty well. But we're still Dutch. Some people don't like it, but a large majority voted for that by referendum; that's the hard, and/or harsh, reality.
We Saw It Coming
PS sinister Monk doesn't read our site, that's obvious. He held a discourse asking for Dutch rehabilitation and (of course, the most important part) money, to pay back for... you'll never guess... slavery. Well-timed, Monk!
In Monk's speech he admitted that if we didn't keep stirring up the people about this, they would just stop to care and don't bother with it any longer. On the spot, Monk! Keep it up. Say, come to think of it, wasn't the guy Colombian from origin? Jolly good show, Monk!
I didn't so much like his remark that we must fight individualism: it divides us and weakens society; and the same goes for some of the media. We heard all this before, not lastly, alas, in Europe ~1935. It gets boring but you never get used to it.
Less Dutch Tourists
The Dutch are taking less foreign vacations than last year. Small wonder, what with all economy problems, and the €C, they just have less money. As 60-75% of tourists are Dutch, this is not so good for tourism. No problem, though... just falsify some more statistics to keep the CTB subisidies flowing in.
Why they still come at all may seem a good question (certainly not to listen to Wiels rave and rant) until you realize that they can still speak their own ugly lingo here.
How Dare You!
Selikor director Kook, who had been
summonedinvited to appear in a parliament meeting, sent a note that he would not, "in view of the public discussion and rising obscurity around the invitation and participation of government companies and the minister in question to the parliament meeting." Parliament members were pissed that he had given the mitten to "the highest organ." Especially Arsjes, it's pretty safe to presume. Wouldn't he just love to grill the Selikor boss.
Government Exodus to Central Bank
Tiens... Several, not to say many top civil servants working for department of finance have taken leave, among whom secretary-general Jardim. They will all move to Central Bank jobs.
No doubt they're all fed up with that Bank Tromp's corruption and will go to work there as spies for their old boss, sinister Jamaloodin.
Jamaloodin's turn to it, he was proud that private business appreciated his personnel so much. Private? The Central Bank "private"?
The St. Maarten government coalition has fallen apart. A parliament member of UP party is going on his own, and an independent parliament member canceled his support, leaving the coalition left with only 7 votes out of 15.
Would be far too optimistic to hope for something like that here. Even granting that Wiels and "his" PS party must eventually run out of its supply of ministers; a "peak-minister" crisis.
The confessional schools have not received their monthly subsidies from PS education minister Sonk's department, and would not have been able to pay salaries and utilities if their banks had not helped them out. Monk's excuse is that the school budgets for 2009-2010 have not yet been presented, but the schools (both catholic and protestant) claim they have presented not only those, but even those for 2010-2011 already.
One day later Monk gave in, maybe because his punishment had not worked. Now the schools say it's not enough in the first place!
What Do You Know? What Do We Know Now?
VDC national security announces its own CvT supervisory committee has investigated the leaks there has been so much ado about, and no information has been leaked. The whistle-blower's story then would be completely fabricated.
VDC has lodged a complaint against the whistle-blower with the public prosecutor. Now I'm really getting curious how this will develop. The more so as in Dutch parliament discussions it has been claimed "trunks full of secret information" about not only VDC, but also CIA, FBI, DEA (USA drug enforcement) and Dutch coast guard have reached private hands.
The RKCS [catholic school management], in a 7 hours parliament meeting, aired the problems schools struggle with. After being accused by PS sinister Monk of stealing and abusing money, the management declared they had neither the money nor the intention to fight these allegations in court; they'd rather apply that effort to education. It was no use blackening each other (using an incorrect term); if Monk suspected this he should lodge a complaint.
Shortlist of problems: too little money; no school maintenance; criminality; growing aggression of children and parents; psychiatric children problems; too large classrooms; vague policies; lack of communication between education partners; too little parent participation; no continuity in projects instigated by Dutch Usona; teen pregnancies; too little time for social and creative courses; insufficient educational inspection; and an inadequate subsidy system.
That Will Teach Them!
PS Wiels had another of his bright ideas. As there are more and more problems with criminality on schools, all teachers should be trained and get a commission as volunteer cops with the license to frisk suspect pupils for firearms, drugs, knives etc.
If any teachers like the idea, please do us all a favor and fire them instantly.
This is as good a place to mention it as any: there's a popular superstition that the growing poverty causes criminality. It's just the other way 'round. It's criminality that causes poverty; and criminal politicians are the worst culprits.
Intimidation Will Get You Nowhere
St. Maarten has declared it will not knuckle down to intimidation by the Curaçao government. PM Shorty may want to cancel the Central Bank loan for St. Maarten's harbor, but the regulations are that both governments are not empowered to interfere with the bank's policy.
Meanwhile, Holland has firmly declared that under no circumstances a split up will be tolerated.
And a good thing too, no matter what you may think about director Tromp.
Is what PM Shorty has announced to mend confidence in VDC security. "VDC has been losing credence since 10-10-10, and many believe it has become a play-ball of politics," says Shorty. Whatever gave these many that idea? He does not give any details (like firing the director?); those remain a surprise until the next parliament meeting, May 3. Nor does he deign to refer to the Dutch plans to integrate VDC with the Dutch security services.
Tiresome Politician's Games
Today was the last day for introducing the 2013 budget in Staten parliament, but there were not enough members present to do so. Both opposition party PAR and coalition party MFK were absent. Maybe they have good reasons, but it's hard to think of them.
This means that parliament has acted contrary to the compatibility directions. Staten president Arsjes held the absent members personally responsible (sounds like nonsense to me) and announced the budget will be on the agenda for every following meeting until it's been accepted. Even then, the country now is in an awkward position.
Thought So, But Wasn't Sure
The government in its awful wisdom has ordained that half of the Nieuwe Havenweg (new harbor road, dating from ~1950 and the first 4-lane highway of the island) is half closed for all traffic on Sundays, so people can get together there for what strikes me as pretty vague idealistic nonsense. My idea was not many people would go there; the ambiente is far from ideal with no shade and hard wind, but I could not be sure. Now they tell me I was right; the originally budgeted 7000 guilders/week are not only a waste, but the amount spent has already grown to 37,500/month.
Officially, the name of the road is Rijkseenheid [National Unity] Boulevard but nobody ever calls it that. With "national" is meant "kingdom" anyway.
A PAR motion of no confidence based on Frente Sivíl's documents expectedly did not get a majority in parliament. Frente Sivíl is unfazed and will proceed to the next phase.
For the record, FOØL Godett also voted against the motion, showing who he thinks his friends are.
PS Blames KLM
Wiels' Pueblo Soberano accuses KLM to have been guilty of cartel activities to break DCA, in 2003. While this is quite possible, our impression is that it would have been superfluous. DCA was quite capable of breaking itself and proceeded to do so.
KLM has "no comment" until they are officially indicted.
The year 2011 shows a negative balance of 20 million guilders, while the original budget had a "modest" surplus. The media are surprised, which is surprising; we all saw it coming. Of course, the government blames
Bushthe former government. Minister Jamaloodin claims the Shorty gang has spent 150M less dan planned (we'll see about that in the August parliament discussions), but nothing has been done to adapt old age pension and health insurance to higher costs. Jamaloodin says "tens of unanswered letters" by pension fund Apna and health insurer SVB have been found, but then goes on to explain that the Shorty cabinet hasn't done anything about it either—resulting in a monthly shortage of 6M to 8M.
Next day, the "negative surplus" (to use a politicians' term) turned out to be more like 40 million, with more bad news feared to follow: economic "growth" keeps going down, automatically resulting in less taxes.
Don't Get Paranoid
PS minister Wilsoen as from now will have to report monthly on the fight against growing criminality. He doesn't think that's of much use (we tend to agree) and has announced some measures that sound like a step up, or down, to a police state. "Preventive frisking" is one. No way of telling if this means anybody can be stopped in the street and frisked. There will be more police patrols, but only based on info received. "Police will not hit the streets for nothing anymore." Great, just great: we always understood that a cop on his neighborhood beat is the best way to fight burglaries and attacks.
Generally, people are so fed up with the crime wave (this year there have already been seven fire-arm killings) that they like these measures; but similar things happened in the past in other places, giving the people cause to regret them later.
A super-fast boat for the Dutch Navy [Koninklijke Marine], built in England, turns out to be a flop. In the first two tests the nose was torn off; in the third test chairs and windshield disappeared. The contraption got nicknamed "rubber Titanic" and "floating coffin;" total cost €22.8M for 48 vessels, which may not include over 70 "improvements." That's over one million guiders each, folks.
The preceding "super-Rhibs" were not so great either. After spending millions to get them in a reasonable state, mostly only 6 out of 12 are available.
These 9m long things (well over 100,000 guilders/meter) are supposed to do 45 knots with a range of ~175NM, mainly to try and catch dope smugglers. Lots of luck with that broken toy, boys; hear those dopers laugh like hyenas. The "cigarette" type speed boats used for smuggling run much faster anyway and can be bought for 1/10th the price.
It may have passed me by, but we're still waiting for results (last January promised to follow in four weeks) of MAN Koeiman's Isla workgroup.
Pueblo Soberano has held a demonstration in Fort Amsterdam against the Central Bank loaning St. Maarten $150M, and Frente Sivíl demonstrated at Waaigat against the government, which of course includes Pueblo Soberano. Surprising guest appearances were made by Pierrot and former PM Maria Liberia-Pieters, proving that Frente Sivíl is not a mere PAR appendix as often claimed. Caribiana mentions respectively 800 and 1200-3000 attendants, but Antilliaans Dagblad "a couple of hundred" and 800. Take your pick.
Wiels himself denies there were only 300 heads to be counted and claims 1500 or even more, but he "had to stop counting as he had other things to do." Maybe practicing multiplication.
One day later, Antilliaans Dagblad wrote that 1004 signatures had been collected at the Frente Sivíl manifestation, which made them reluctantly conclude there must have been at least that many people there. Well, yeah... The newspaper mentioned a ping-rumor that a Colombian hired killer would be among those present (to pick out future victims?)
Screw-Worm Fly and Dengue
In 1953 Curaçao island was used in an experiment to eradicate the screw-worm fly, which lays eggs in open wounds of animals; the larvae then infect the animal.
Males were sterilized by cobalt irradiation and then released in enormous amounts from small aircraft. The chance for females to pair with a fertile male was reduced to virtually zero, and in ten weeks the fly was completely eradicated. Alas, not enough attention was given to re-infestation by way of imported cattle and goats and the fly has been back long since.
A similar process is now being tried in Brazil to eradicate the Aedes aegypti mosquito, potential carrier of yellow fever and dengue infections. This one was also as good as eradicated here in the 1950s by more conventional techniques, but later came back full strength when controls were relaxed, resulting in what now is a virtual dengue epidemic. This looks much more promising than Constancia's quack cures, especially because of Curaçao's isolation. Another proof of her inefficacy; not that we needed any.
As from now, new daily occurrences will be looked at first
I'll then pick up on the backlog until it's all over and done with
so please check on what's been added below
thanks for your interest!
Leeflang Adds Fuel to the Fire
Seeming not to worry too much about van der Dijs' action, Leeflang writes a letter to Amigoe newspaper and does not mend her ways. It's about "our" proxy minister Osepa, who's threatened to use all means in his power to tackle her freedom of expression. She then relates how Osepa has claimed to "have carefully studied her complaint with Amnesty International" while she has lodged no such complaint [yet]. Reminds me of that other worthy foot-in-mouther, Leerdam.
Finally, she points out that Osepa's efforts in Holland have not been able to prevent that the formerly autonomous VDC now effectively is under Dutch and USA control, and how since our much-vaunted independence the mafia is threatening to get a grip on the Central Bank. I was too naïve to see that's behind all those actions against Tromp.
Van der Dijs Objects
Shorty's father-in-common-law van der Dijs has lodged a complaint with the court, accusing PAR ex-minister Leeflang of libel, insults and defamation. She has called him, director of Aqualectra and Refineria di Kòrsou, a boef [scoundrel] on Fakebooc and in the press. She also referred to Lovers (managed by him) and Vanddis (which he owns) companies as "scoundrels" and called on the people to boycott them; an attempt at property damage, states his lawyer.
There's a lot more, but even more interesting is that v.d. Dijs last year started a similar suit against Central Bank director Tromp who had accused him of corruption, but the public prosecutor never took any action (v.d. Dijs seems to resent that.) He claims "false accusations undermine the roots of society and the constitutional state." Right, and you could mention more things that do so.
Wow! A good thing I never called them "scoundrels." And I didn't need Leeflang's incitements to avoid them like the plague either.
MFK Forgets, PAR Remembers
After MFK Jamaloodin claimed in a television speech that he has always objected to a joint Central Bank of Curaçao and St. Maarten, PAR reminded him that his party was part of the coalition that accorded the arrangement in 2010.
PM Shorty has taken the trouble, during one of his rare stays on the island, to hold a speech on television, following the tedious example of other dictators like Castro and Chavez who love to occupy the air waves for hours. He deplores the uneasiness among the population caused by the crime wave, the groups that try to put pressure on the government, and certain government acts. The last two items are really the same, of course. People do not like the fact that all these things are now uttered in public, says Short and he may be right; not that it matters.
I wasn't there to hear it (as if I'd want to) but from the descriptions, it seems Shorty wants the pressure groups to stop and let the government do what it wants. Sure; but that's his, and many others', idea of democracy. But his speech certainly was inspired by Dutch Brandpunt documentary, and he never touched on the real problems with his government.
Durgaram of Frente Sivíl objected to Shorty's characterization of the group as agitators, while they are only want to guarantee government integrity.
Now It's Secret!
A bit late: Holland has declared all government discussions around VDC and its leaks a secret. Dutch minister Spies says co-operation between VDC and Dutch intelligence is presently limited to security investigations.
Jamaloodin Lodges Tromp Complaints
MFK minister Jamaloodin has lodged two complaints against Central Bank director Tromp, in the name of the government. He's giving no details, only lets it be known that a third complaint may follow and that the integrity of Tromp is under serious doubt. No matter if he'll turn out to be right or wrong; this is much better than the innuendos bouncing back and firth.
Two of the bank's directors have also written Tromp to hold him responsible for several of the Bank's actions.
Yet another plan to
exploitdevelop the coast East of the harbor entrance. Islands will be built, sand for beaches schlepped in... we all know the routine by now. This "Pen Resort" is an old plan, all dusted off and presented as-good-as-new. But hey, what's happened to that other even more grandiose plan, the one with the stupid name?
Don't we all have them, ever since parking meters were put in all over town because some guy wanted to build a parking garage in Pietermaai. But now he has a problem with audit-office Rekenkamer: his accounting is just as much of a mess as the government's. Small wonder; I know places where car owners park all day long, no doubt having made a deal with the guys checking the meters. Seems to be a discrepancy of over 1 million guilders; just disappeared from the books.
We have added a few more crimes to the list of those committed in the past by our top criminal, PM Shorty. We hope he's stopped by now, but have to express very little confidence.
Besides, we know that the list is far from complete. Possibly missing items can be found here.
Wages of Slavery Sin
There is a continuing debate on how much Holland has made on slavery in the past, what with possible Wiedergutmachung payment claims sounding highly attractive to some people. Researcher Karwan Fatah-Black of Leiden University in Holland has figured it all out; present value of Dutch earnings is €700 million. 600,000 slaves brought a profit of 120 guilders each.
However, that was not the net profit of sales price minus the purchase price and costs; it was the total sum earned by all related economic activity like trade in weapons, textile, jenever [Dutch trade gin] and gun powder.
We can only conclude that Holland by taking over Curaçao's debt to the tune of 4.5 billion guilders (2 billion €s) has amply, generously and honorably acquitted itself.
Nothing more has been heard about Shorty's claims that Schottegat harbor would be cleared of oil pollution in less than six weeks, but that's only six months ago, and we know he's been busy. Small wonder that private enterprise is reported to have taken over with cesspool-cleaning trucks routinely dumping their loads in there.
Brandpunt Must Burn
Proxy minister in Holland Osepa thought he'd make it even clearer that dictatorship is what our government wants. He will leave no avenue unexplored (and probably upturn all stones) to tackle the Brandpunt edition. "As yu di Kòrsou, abroad you must stand behind your government." We heard that one before: "Ein Volk, ein Führer!"
I plead guilty. I even agree with Osepa that the program doesn't contain any new information—you don't have to watch it if you've been following our Circus acts; we knew it all the time.
It's just that, that NAAM organized a meeting of Curaçao journalists today, to discuss the meaning of the International Day of Freedom of the Press and what the journalists were worrying about.
Next Step Down: The Media
Dutch KRO-TV program Brandpunt [a pun on focal point and burning point] had the temerity, the incredible chutzpah, the impudence to record an item here on the way PM Shorty's gang is working on establishing a solid dictatorship here, without even interviewing him! (He was away on one of his many jaunts, this time unannounced to India.) Shorty's cohort Stella van Rijn fired off a letter to protest: director de Koe should have asked for official comments and "not only have registered what some people think." Which serves to confirm de Koe's thesis:
Freedom of the press means it can publish what it wants to without having official approval. Trying to stop this is what tyrannies do.
You can see the Brandpunt report here.
It's three weeks ago that the St. Maarten government decided to get out of the Central Bank of Curaçao and St. Maarten, without bothering to tell Curaçao about it. Of course it's well known the Curaçao government wants out as well. They both want their own wee bank.
Besides the problems with corruption allegations against director Tromp and maybe questionable loans, a new coin that has been in the works since 10-10-10 still has not arrived. It's taken so long, new editions of the same tired old ANG-coins had to be released. But let's face it, St. Maarten has been using US dollars since within living memory; why should they want a new coin now?
Who's Worse? Wiels? Wilsoe?
Sinister of justice PS Wilsoe seems to be dissatisfied with the pressure applied upon him by his bomba Wiels, so much so that he wants to quit. But Wiels feels he can't be party leader and minister. Be glad for small favors, folks! And don't lick your chops, it's all redu [rumors] anyway.
Fire Killed Gotomeer
The September 2010 fire in Bonaire's Bopec oil terminal may have effectively killed off much of Goto lake's, a protected area, ecology. After two storage tanks started burning for two days the wind direction changed several times, resulting in soot particles and other pollution getting blown over the lake. Among other things, this is a feeding place for flamingo's and important as a fish nursery.
At first it looked like the damage was not too heavy, but now this seems prematurely optimistic. One result may be more and more flamingos have moved their foraging to Curaçao's Jan Kock-St. Marie salt ponds.
The Dutch Are Worried
Dutch parliament thinks it a good idea to have their own security services AIVD and MIVD reorganize the Curaçao VDC (a pox on all those acronyms!) They think it unsafe to leave that to PM Shorty, as VDC's involvement with Colombian and even private security organizations may have resulted in sensitive Dutch information, shared with VDC, having leaked out.
That's Some Promotion!
PS minister Monk's
Girl Friendco-operator has, all of a sudden, been promoted to department head of "permits windows"—sounds like great fun. She will derive more joy from the fact that, at the same time, she has jumped up from salary scale 9 to 16 in one fell swoop. Sounds like an Olympic record. Not only that, it has been done with retrospective effect, starting on 10-10-10 which means a windfall of ANG100,000 - for her, not for us.
Even Monk's boss Wiels is kicking up a stink, the more so because another person has been given the job only last year. But, while Monk claims all this has been oh-so transparent as his predecessor Girigorie promised the same person that job, Girigorie denies that this entailed such a salary raise.
A week later her appointment was canceled—by order of the PS management.
Long-delayed overhaul of Isla refinery's cat cracker and more has now started and should take six weeks at a total cost of USD76M. A temporary job for 1850 workers of whom 1200 are imported. The refinery will be shut down for that period; so enjoy breathing clean air while you can.
However, Isla workers privately think the work will take three months. We'll see if it's ready by end May or mid July.
Metro, "the world's largest metropolitan newspaper" with free editions in more than 100 cities, has held a competition among all their readers with as prize a free space-trip from Curaçao.
There were 9,206 competitors altogether. Hmm.
Large-scale illegal building is not only an eyesore; it makes planning almost impossible. Now, mudbelly Cooper is putting signs at illegal building locations, politely asking the builders to contact his department. "Of course they will check if the building can't be legalized."
Wonder if one of those signs will be put at Caracasbaai.
Red Tape Torn to Shreds
MFM minister el Hakim announces an end to red tape: new companies starting in Curaçao will get their permits and licenses quickly from now on. But PS Wiels has misgivings. Boiling them down for you, it looks like he's worried that honkies will use the opportunity to sneak in, thus voiding all his efforts to
keepmake Curaçao all-black. For the time being Wiels' worries are needless; hardly any investors are applying anyway.
Even el Hakim acknowledges this, when you take all the hype away, is just a start; there's plenty red tape left to get tangled in.
Listen Who's Talking
Prince, who was fired as head of Wega di Number lottery has gone to court as announced, found his opposing lawyer there goes by the name of Elizabeth Asjes. Could this be a relation? In that case, it's extra ironic that she claims Prince's job was a political appointment [so he should be kicked out and replaced by our political appointee.]
Make a long story short enough not to bore you to yawning tears, after two weeks the judge decided Prince was right and should be paid his salary. End of story?
Daal Must Go; But Will He?
Although the judge has declared Daal may not be fired as head of Kranshi civil registry, the government still wants to fire him anyway. "A large part of personnel will not accept him" which at least seems to be true enough. Now they offer Daal another job (that must be Plan B), but he and his lawyer want to know more about it.
TI is coming! Not before we were ready for it. Still, who'd thought it would happen, despite Shorty's November promises? In May TI will start a National Integrity System assessment that should help us fight corruption. Total price will be about half a million guilders (wonder if Shorty gets a kickback—just kidding? Maybe, other people are not so sure.)
Curaçao-born John Leerdam, a flopped actor who went into politics (how fitting) and has even been acting as a Curaçao voice in the socialist fraction of Dutch parliament, was fooled to state in radio interviews that he knew about a non-existing pop group; commented on recent statements of Israel PM Sharon without realizing the man has been in a coma for years; and criticized the advanced release of non-existing terrorist JaBlaBla [really!]
Good riddance—the man was an embarrassment long before this happened.
Dos Santos Arrested
Robbie's robbed of his freedom! When he, as called for, appeared at the ministry of Justice at 8 o'clock in the morning, he was arrested. Sparing you the technical details, he can be held prisoner for a maximum of 26 days; should he be released before then he can't be arrested again. At least not for the same crimes (money laundering, tax dodging and fraud.)
Robbie partially did win his fight against the seizure of his bank accounts in the USA ($30M or $46M, depends upon the source.) For three accounts, the seizure was ended; for three others, it remains in force. Robbie himself was freed after a few days, but that money is still held captive.
Dreadful Sorry, Clementine
Yes, "Gone and Lost" maybe even "Forever:" the archive of RVD government info service. All 2200 films and videotapes plus tens of thousands of photographs have disappeared without a trace. Until 10-10-10 it was
dumpedstored in a Fort Amsterdam attic, and then "cleared away." Pretty thoroughly, as it left not a wreck behind.
Wiels Wants Probe
Wiels has written a letter to governor Goedgedrag, insisting on a full and complete security screening for his newly proposed minister Trinidad, remarking "we've noticed our present PM likes to deviate from established procedures." Wiels adds his party wants to avoid any semblance of doubt on integrity of its ministers, and that this has never been under discussion.
He conveniently forgets to mention Rosalia.
Isla refinery lawyers thought up a new trick to stop the court from stopping their pollution: they claim there's a new permit, still to be signed by health sinister Constancia, that would allow the refinery to just continue spewing out filth. I grudgingly admit it's a smart move, but Smoc wonders why the permit is in English and if Constancia
canhas read and understood it. Judgement will be pronounced on 28 May.
Not enough by half, alas. But the Rijksministerraad [Kingdom ministers] did halt a giant delegation of eight ministers and their
by-sidesco-operators who were planning holiday outingsworking visits to Qatar this month and Brazil in June. Aruba and St. Maarten were against too, but especially Holland has been looking askance at Shorty and his cohorts' love of travel.
Several have been to a wedding in India, very important for our collective future, as you can imagine. "Sheik Hakim's" outing to Rio was estimated to cost ANG37K; among other reasons because he needs English, Dutch, Portuguese and even Papiamentu interpreters. Instead he planned a 2-week trip to the U.A.E., Qatar and Dubai; guaranteed to be even more expensive even if he may not need an Arab interpreter. Minister of justice PS Wilsoe has been to a conference in Vietnam. Vietnam? you ask. Yes, Vietnam, don't ask.
Frente Sivíl presented parliament head Arsjes documentation which allegedly proves that at least three ministers (PM Gerrit Schotte, Abdul Nasser el Hakim and George 'Jorge' Jamaloodin (all MFK), are not "ministeriable." This is some weeks after Dushi Korsou, part of Frente Sivíl, presented the same material but without "proof." Frente Sivíl wants new elections when their material is not properly investigated in parliament.
Entrepreneurs club VBC is worried about Aqualectra utility's financial position. They are so short of cash that they offer discounts to users who are behind with payments (like Jamaloodin?). Such a shortage may lead to problems with energy and water supply, warns VBC. Apart from the fact that such a policy is an injustice to those who do pay on time.
The Dutch are proposing measures to stop further inflow of Curazoleños, Arubianos and St. Maartenese (that can't be correct. Anyway.) They must have a job and (or maybe and/or) an income, speak acceptable Dutch and have no criminal record. This would be presented before summer in Dutch parliament.
Other politicians don't agree: It would merely result in those guys going to Holland but not getting registered, so they would become part of the criminal world as, naturally, they cannot receive welfare. But that very last factor may stop them; why else move to the e tera friu [the cold cuntry]?
Healthy Foods Fad
There is a growing interest in "healthy" food products. Our supermarkets propagate them for all they can, and so do several government institutions. Alas, already high prices tend to grow as well, so only those with higher incomes can afford them. But are they really that healthy at all?
Examples from the article in Caribiana: Gluten-intolerance affects only 1 in 500 to 1750 people in the USA, the equivalent of less than 1 person here; for people who do not have celiac disease there's absolutely no need to bother. (Remember the MSG [monosodium glutamate] scare? It just faded away; very few people are susceptible to it.) "Unhealthy" food additives really are very carefully controlled, which cannot be said of "biologic or organic" agricultural products. There is no evidence at all that these products are healthier; to the contrary, they are often to be blamed for food poisoning outbreaks due to the use of that miracle grow product, compost.
Arsjes Is Disappointed
Of the 338 letters sent by parliament-members, the Schotte cabinet has replied to only 58. The oldest one dates from 13 October 2010. But why is Arsjes "disappointed"? It's a fine tradition! Worst non-responders are PM Shorty himself, health Constancia, "mudbelly" Cooper and education Jansen (who can't even reply anymore as he's left.)
Just before a new court session, Isla refinery managed to exceed the pollution norms heavily. While the norm is 500 microgram/m3 of air for no longer than ten minutes, the measured concentration was far above that for longer than seven hours, with a peak of 893.3µg/m3.
Curaçao Leads the Field
Rather surprising statement by BTP [Telecommunication & Post] director de Canha at first sight. Meant is our "green" energy supply. Total supply is supposed to double to 240mW of which a large part will be supplied by wind turbines. Uh oh. He's not the only one who emphasizes the importance of saving on energy.
The hard fact is that we are literally awash in a sea of energy. Even discounting future sources like nuclear thorium reactors, there is so much natural gas around that there's an actual glut in the USA long before all sources have been opened, sufficient for over 200 years of present energy use. Prometheus would say "So use it, already!"
Bottom line for me as an experienced solar panel user: It works out to be about ten times more expensive than our high Aqualectra rates.
Amigu di Tera [Friends of the Earth - they mean well] has written several letters to the government on the abuse, contrary to law, of the Northern island plateaux for putting up those wind generators. It's supposed to be a conservation area, melud.
This is our view now. I rest my case.
Dutch Parliament would like to be informed 'completely' on the leaks of information to foreign [read: Columbian] and "private" "security"
So would we.
The government is "surprised" (and disagreeably at that, one assumes) that, out of the ten candidates they'd proposed for a new director's function in the Central Bank, not one was chosen. Instead, a bloody outsider, a black horse so to speak, got the job. Sinister Jamaloodin feels that Curaçao should have a 2/3rd majority in that kind of decision, but the Bank's decision makes clear that it doesn't matter what Jamaloodin thinks. Good.
Gas Goes Up
Once again, gas prices will go up. This time to ANG2.48/liter. While this is a far cry from those in Holland (over 4/liter) (really!) it's also in sharp contrast to those in the USA, ANG0.56/liter. And remember, a lot of that gas comes from here!
According to CBS statistics bureau, inflation over the past year was 3.2% in February; which means, they add, it's steadily growing. What else is new?
Hey, somebody should fire those guys and replace 'em with faithful Shorty-followers, à la 1984.
Just for Laughs
A (very small) number of Dutch schoolteachers have decided that Papiamentu must be introduced in the Dutch school system. In Holland. Because a lot of people in Holland speak Papiamentu, get it? And they have their rights, get it? Among the advocates, we find the same guys who want restitution payment for slavery. Naturally!
A lot? Let us be generous and say there are 300,000 people in Holland who speak the lingo. That's 0.02% of the Dutch population (one out of five thousand). There are many more people here who speak Dutch, like at least one out of ten—but of them, it is expected that they learn Papiamentu. Naturally! Get it?
"It's You! No, It's You!"
Like schoolchildren playing yoyo, St. Maarten is accusing the Central Bank of loaning Curaçao Aqualectra ANG300M, and Curaçao accusing same of loaning St. Maarten $150M for their harbor—the same amount, give or take.
New Traffic Signs
3000 new traffic signs will be introduced shortly. This is the responsibility of MAN "Mudbelly" Cooper. A local manufacturer will make them as they have to be replaced quickly when needed (and also, it's easier to collect, we maliciously suspect.) But Henk Pasman, one of yr. faithful letter-writers remarks, when they introduce new mailboxes why not put up decent street-name signs? No doubt somebody will gracefully take the hint; more money to be made!
Just in Time
Holland has introduced higher requirements for Havo and WVO [high schools]. But while Curaçao was supposed to sign this, what with all those ministers merrily going round they just plumb forgot. Which may result in Holland not accepting our diplomas.
Oops! The very next day, minister Jansen signed (his last official act.)
Goisco Supermarket has installed over 500 solar panels, supposed to deliver more than 100kW of electricity. Hmmm.... let's figure... that's about 200W/panel. Judging from the photographs in the press (courtesy Shorty's Eco-Energy), the panels measure about 100*150cms. Looks like the Kyocera KD210GX-LFBS 210 Watt module.
Well, Goisco is in for a disagreeable surprise. Even here, the sun only shines for 12 of 24 hours which brings the effective yield down to 50kW, just like that. Figuring clouds and low angles in morning and evening, they can expect at most half of that again; let's be generous and say 25kW. If that. The panels cost, even without taxes, about $400 each, that's $16/ANG29 per kW. Not counting mounting and cables, switching and all. I know, I was one of the first guys to use them here.
On Eco-Energy's web-site, 4 275W panels are offered for ANG7400. You don't even have to go to Alibaba to find them for much less than half the price.
No... building crashing castles in the air! Minister el Hakim is paying a visit to Brazil to try and convince GOL airlines to start a route Sao Paolo-Curaçao-New York. This will cost (us) a small fortune, with 400 of our families depending on food stamps to fight hunger. All in vain, as GOL announced last year that they had chosen Santo Domingo as their station instead. Doesn't the guy read the papers? Can he read at all?
Musical Ministers' Chairs
PS Minister of education Jansen will quit, the third in a row after Girigorie and Rosalia. His follow-up is Monk, until now planning sinister (following Girigorie), who will in turn be replaced by Carlos Trinidad (who is thus ensured of a fat old age.) Wiels, the dumb dictator, comments he's not satisfied with anybody, himself included. Neither are we, Wiels.
The Central Bank has asked all banks to freeze all credits in order to reduce the national balance of payments deficit. But the banks complain that it is not only unclear what exactly is meant, they feel it's much too rigorous and freezing of consumptive credit would suffice. The banks predict "an economic disaster." But a week later, it all turned out to be a storm in a cup of Caribbean Sea: private credits have been frozen for six months.
What Wrong with Wiels?
PS Wiels thinks it a good thing that people start opening their mouths and protest against the government. That's because the "culture of fear" that existed under former governments has come to an end (and we here thinking it was the other way round.) His proof is that he, a social worker, was side-tracked by PAR. Too bad he only tells us now.
SMOC Supported by... Wiels!?
After a presentation in Staten parliament, who would have thought that PS Wiels would support SMOC's fight against Isla refinery pollution: PdVSA must keep to their obligations stipulated by nuisance laws and government should control this. But Wiels, after stating that former governments neglected acting against refinery pollution, omitted to confirm that he and his party would take action.
Pseudo-Science Is Winning
Aqualectra utility will stop fluoridation of the water supply in 2014. Super-superstitious naturopath Rudolf de Wit claims fluoride results in many cases of breast cancer, which is good enough for health minister Constancia (without bothering to check with GGD public health or Curaçao Dental Society.)
Dentist Eric de Brabander, in protest, remarks that the Caribbean Sea, the source of distilled drinking water, is poor in fluoride in the first place. De Brabander ought to know that distilled water would not contain any fluoride, no matter how much the raw water source contains.
More (Anonymous) Claims about Hakim
One more email doing the samizdat rounds. No way to check if it's true. Correct, all this certainly is not. It's not meant for publication so we left out several details.
FOØL Godett, when a member of the preceding PAR-PNP-FOL coalition, was bribed by now PM Shorty to award beach-cleaning to now minister el Hakim's Costa Bonita. Officially, LVV [agriculture dept] is charged with this but Costa Bonita does the job, causing much money to flow into one mr. Leito's wallet.
Hakim is the real "owner" of political party MFK, and Shorty is a mere straw-man.
When el Hakim had his tax troubles, all paperwork pertaining to his contractor company "de Goede Hoop" was removed from his office locations. The company was involved with restoring Willemstad buildings, and also with building barbecues on (again) beaches. Money flows freely between ministers.
Shorty's company Eco-Energy uses community money for free propaganda; all measures taken to promote solar energy have resulted in his company achieving what amounts to a monopoly.
Earth Hour this year will be celebrated on April 22 at 20:30 (8:30 PM for you, gringo loco) with the yearly "lights out" action, plunging the whole world back in North Korean darkness for an hour. Thought I'd be visiting the Grand Canyon then, where it wouldn't make much of a difference. Good, because I will not join the
mobcrowd. Anyway, judging from past years most Curazoleños obviously agree with me. But originally I got the date wrong: it's on Lenin's birthday. We need to celebrate that?
Domain of Darkness
You must have seen this photo before, if not in this colorful splendor:
Tyrannocracy North (top) and South (bottom, you'd never guess) Korea at night, from space.
image from Measuring Economic Growth from Outer Space
with their kind permission.
rather revel in this beauty
The View from Space:
Cities and Coastlines
Now We Understand! That Explains It!
A while ago the government in its impressing wisdom decided to make all imports of "green" stuff import-duty free. That's solar panels, wind turbines, you name it. A good thing of course, if only because less money will flow into (and all too soon out of) the government coffers. Still, we wondered: why?
But an email circulating (much against the wish of the original sender) supplies the answer: PM Shorty is the owner of a company Eco Energy and thus has an immediate advantage here. It's simple once you know.
Among other things, they offer LED Pool lights - oh, how green and environment-conscious in our semi-desert island.
Even the Chamber of Commerce thinks it worth while to organize a symposium on "biomass" as an energy source. Let us, for the sake of argument, accept that this is feasible, even if with the ethanol flop in mind, this is pushing it. Where will we get the biomass from? Takes us right back to the good [?] old days when Curaçao was exporting manure, charcoal and wood as "agricultural" products. It's in the past half century or, to be more exact, the last twenty years, that we finally got some vegetation back with the goat eradication.
You may have noticed, I most certainly did, that more and more items making this page originated as emails, be they anonymous or public. Not everybody wants their emails distributed like that—in which case, here's some good and free! advice, don't send 'em. But what I want to say, hey, don't push me, OK? is that this is a new and recent phenomenon. Somehow, we did not feel this need to communicate in this manner before the present government made its stage debut. Which is telling a lot.
Samizdat is how Communist-era underground publications were published in good old Russia. People took the trouble to type 'em out on typewriters (max. five readable copies) and pass those on to their friends. This is how Alexander I. Solzhenitsyn's masterpiece One Day in the Life of Ivan Denisovich got around. After all, it seems to beat the chess-board legend by a long way.
While the space scoundrels proudly brag how fine it is that they already sold €4.2M worth of tickets, competitor Branson of Virgin Air announces pre-flight sales of $60M, just about 10 times as much worth.
Show Us the Money!
One of the ideas taken over by Shorty & His Gang from the despised former government was to improve the barrios. He thought it such a good plan, he even extended it from five to twenty: Plan Nashonal, with fifteen more to be added in 2013. But since then, nothing has happened: a sum of ANG200M was budgeted for; Plan Nashonal as a combination of five ministries worked out detailed plans; but none of the ministries came through with money.
Credit Freeze Frostily Received
Sinister Jamaloodin has been requested by CBA Curaçao Bank Association to postpone Central Bank's idea to freeze all credit for a period of six months, to give Central Bank time to explain further. They feel this is all too rigorous and may have a further negative influence on the economy; which is one thing we definitely don't need.
MFK PM Shorty has sent 4 full file folders on Aqualectra utility to parliament members. As they are confidential, he has requested those members to treat them that way. Trouble is, they are meant for discusssion in a public meeting. Maybe Shorty can explain how this rhymes with his vehement protests against all those leaks.
From a forwarded email's attached documents, it turns out that FOØL Adriaens, as manager of Hato airport, has been forced to pay ANG750K to those guys with spacious space schemes by sinister el Hakim, called "the godfather" of the so-called Droste-group. All loans to the group are reported to be unsecured and interest-free.
But the space groupies should not even be able to get an AOC [air operator's certificate] license for Curaçao-based operations, as this requires "substantive local ownership" and "effective local control"—which works havoc with Hato's already degraded status. The Droste-group is accused of consistent efforts to negate our DvL [aviation dept], mainly by denying it is an "aviation" company.
While CAH [Hato] supplies most of the money, all corporate power is held by the Droste-group.
Ifwhen the group fails at some point, all money advanced by Hato is irretrievably lost.
It has become clear as well that Droste-group filched the concept for space travel from the first group with Curaçao space tourism plans, consisting of young scientists at a Dutch university named Wouters & Alders. The Droste group signed agreements on financing etc. while they were not even a legal entity [yet].
Maybe the best part is that the Droste group does not consider itself bound by the Convention of Warsaw, as it is "not an airline" and thus is not obliged to refund tickets if the whole enterprise grinds to a stop. Neither is it obliged to pay back any "loans" advanced by CAH/Hato.
SMOC Writes to UN
SMOC has written an email to the United Nations Children's Rights committee to advise them on the Isla refinery pollution. Downwind live 6,000 children and there are 19 schools. The pollution results in 18 premature deaths per year, and 85% of people living there want to see a doctor, move away and are just scared.
SMOC seems not to expect any direct results from this letter; looks like they're just frustrated. Aren't we all.
It's All Gone
Old age pension funds will be exhausted by the end of next year. So there. The age on which you get it has already been brought up from 60 to 65 years, but that didn't help much; and MAN sinister Koeiman's proposal to bring the transitory age (now 58) for those who'll get it 5 years later down to 57 or even 56 would make it even worse. Raising the premium won't help either, as it will probably result in the economy going (still) further downhill.
Recipe for Desillusion
PAR ex-minister Leeflang suggests that it's possible to introduce a motion in parliament by "citizens' initiative" which in Holland would call for 40,000 signatures. She makes a wild guess at 10,000 needed here, so this doesn't seem to be regulated by law. Anyway, Holland has roughly 100 times as many inhabitants so 400 signatures would be ample here—Frente Sivíl collected ten times as many, over 4,000.
I don't want to be pessimistic, but I am: parliament boss Arsjes would never permit such a motion on the floor.
According to Constancia, lowering the medicine importers' margin to 15% combined with some minor measures will result in a reduction in costs by half. She must have another brand calculator than I have, or maybe she's smarter. Too smart by half, is a good guess.
But there can be saved a lot of money on medicine. Example: Symbicort (opens up blocked lungs and bronchial tubes) uses an expensive inhaler that can be used for a year, with monthly refills. However, the importer only sells packages complete with inhaler—I'm sure there are lots more like these.
Headwind Pushes from Back
The judge has spoken: DAE may use their wet-leased MD83, notwithstanding InselAir's arguments. And now, InselAir declares this is great, as it opens their way to many more constructions to cooperate with other, foreign, companies. Why didn't they think of that in the first place?
From Worse to Badder
Now it's the Cft Commissie financieel toezicht [committee financial supervision] that's complaining they have no idea at all what's going on. Several large unnamed government foundations and enterprises were in severe trouble some years ago, with "enormous deficits", and Cft suspects it's even worse now, but just doesn't receive the yearly figures on 2010 and 2011.
Cft explains that many institutes are forced to adjust their tariffs down because of political pressure, while politicians say there's much waste and inefficiency. Our guess is, both apply.
The government has promised all cooperation to get the accounts to Cft. That's a relief!
And we are curious what government will do about one slight oversight: there's no budget for the new hospital.
Tax for Ministers and for Us
Turns out, sinister Jamaloodin is protesting his tax assessments. We have to do so in less than two months, or forget it and pay up; but Jamaloodin's assessments date from way back when. Hey, what's going on here?
And is really none of the media interested in how much el Hakim is, or will be, paying? Didn't it occur to them to ask? Or, if they did, why don't they tell us? Again we have to wait for a little birdie to blow its wee whistle.
This time we don't mean the government or tax. In Aruba where boa constrictors have become a real pest, there are regular hunts for them. Now, several have been seen and found here as well, but they're not a pest—yet. The snakes are not endemic, but have escaped, or been turned loose, by animal lovers. Just like the lionfish. We only have to wait until two meet and mate.
PM Shorty has a simple and stupid solution for the medicine problem. No doubt health sinister Constancia advised him. The importers may not earn more than 20% on products, and their suppliers must lower their prices with 15%.
But the importers think differently. First, because of high water/energy costs, stocking medicine here is very expensive. Second, you may get the suppliers to lower their prices with 7%, as has been done in Aruba, but they won't go for more. This is of little concern to the government: if the importers don't comply, the market for medicine will be deregulated.
No Wonder They Have Problems
I paid my last Aqualectra utility bill on March 6. Today I received the next bill, and separate a letter dated March 7 warning me that if I don't pay that first bill by March 19, they'll come and cut me off. (If only they'd done that with other people, like Jamaloodin... but I get carried away.) Point is, if they would wait one day longer and check their accounts first, they'd save themselves money. Free tip, you (words fail me).
Better Stock Up
The botikas drugstores threaten that, if the problems with payments in arrear have not been solved by the end of this month, they will not be able any longer to supply medicine to their customers. SVB social security has promised to pay in lump sums instead of fragemented installments, but the drugstores have not received anything yet. Another triumph for sinister of health Constancia, the Cuban quack cure fiend. At least her colleague el Hakim can move much faster; once he gets inspired, that is.
Frente Sivíl, the group in which seven other action groups have united forces, has after the parliament debacle sent all members of Staten parliament a letter stating that PM Shorty's government may not and cannot have parliament's confidence any longer.
The PM made a farce of the screening process, and the leaked documents have shown clearly that the ministers are not fit for their functions (Frente Sivil calls 'em "not ministeriable"), that the cabinet has knowingly supplied wrong information and has suppressed it.
Frente Sivil, who has no political ambitions, plans to keep the people informed on what has been going on and what is being planned, "all following the law like decent people do." You think they mean the cabinet does not consist of decent people? It's a thought.
El Hakim Pays Debts
Sinister el Hakim is paying his tax debts, he claims in a letter to the press, accompanied by letters from the Tax Man and SVB social security bank. His arrangements with those guys are from October 2010 and March 2012—hey, that's just now! So the final arrangements only stem from after his info was leaked. The media don't seem to have noticed that, as usual; but the leakers may be satisfied.
But we'd still like to know what exactly those arrangements are: did el Hakim get a discount?
The Public Prosecutor does not wish to comment yet on the government's statement that the prosecutor saw no reason to investigate PM Shorty's capricious financial stunts. He may merely have meant he lacked sufficient information to start an action on. Suspicions are that the prosecutor never received the relevant MOT documents. Two top PP people, Piar and Joubert, are in Holland now and we await their return with bated breath.
Ombudsman Bites Back
The ombudsman, who really is a person, Martijn states that PM Shorty has no business interfering with her function, which is independent from the government—for very good reasons, Q.E.D. To put it snappily she tells him to shove it.
Kiribati: Spelling Lesson
Found out about this because the inhabitants of the Kiribati archipelago want to move to one of the Fiji islands. Right they are, they are living on an atol with only sand, so agriculture is impossible; they have no fresh water anyway. (The claims that it has to do with rising sea levels because of
global warminguh climate changeuh biodiversity (huh?) are unfounded propaganda. Matter of fact, sea level has been falling there for some time. So that's consensually settled.)
Reason I mention it, until just know I figured to pronounce Kiribati like this: KeereeBAHtee. All wrong: it's KEEleebash. You see, it used to be called the Gilbert[Island]s, which got transmuted in their lingo, but then came the spelling. As they have no "s" they took the sound out of 'naTIonal', presto, "ti=s". And the "r", you ask? You guessed it: they have no "l" either. Ask them why they didn't just adopt those handy characters. What do they do, black 'em out on their keyboards by government decree?
You know, somehow I'm reminded here of Papiamentu and its insane spelling. Is why I thought I'd mention it, making myself more popular all the time. Granted, it's not more insane than English spelling—but nothing could be. However, English spelling grew quite haphazardly and more or less by accident (and now we're stuck with it); for Papiamentu, some learned fools got together and deliberately planned the mess (and now we're stuck with it).
Also reminds me of the Japanese, who have no "r" either. Miruku for "milk", basaboru for "baseball." But it was a Japanese who remarked to my brother wrestling with chop-sticks, "Why don't you use that great Western invention—the fork."
Outraged by Proxy
Curaçao gevolmachtigd minister [proxy minister] in Holland PS Osepa has informed Holland that Curaçao follows the kingdom policy versus Iran. PM Shorty is outraged, and so is PS. But Osepa comments this is not a subject for politics: "Curaçao is on Holland's side or on Iran's [...] I am a jurist, I know the rules and I'm not just shouting." Ouch.
16-year old Shurendly Maduro hangs around on the Fort Amsterdam premises, the cave of Ali Baba and the forty brigands—in other words the government seat, helping out people and explaining things. He had the temerity of holding a highly successful speech at the protest meeting last Monday. Now, all of a sudden, he is forbidden to enter the buildings. But security says this has nothing to do with that speech, which sounds plausible. Even Shorty and Arsjes couldn't be so childish—or could they?
"It's Going Fine"
The Hato Space Port for the Vomit Comet, where from next year you may possibly make trips into space for €70k has "already" sold 60 tickets. How many of these have been sold as lottery items or just plain been given away, not sold, we're not told. Anyway, that's €1,400,000 (ANG3.3M,134/USD1.8M); not very impressive when Curaçao has to invest $450M—for starters.
The necessary laws are well on their way to being adapted, too, we're told. So that's what those loafers in government have been doing, besides picking fights and raking in money!
That's What I Was Afraid Of
Language: "one of the most powerful, dangerous and subversive traits that natural selection has ever devised." (Matt Ridley in Wall Street Journal). Please read it! Really hits the spot on what I feel about Papiamentu: one more way to keep us isolated.
There will be no independent investigation of the integrity of the cabinet. This was decided by staten parliament after a PAR opposition motion. The coalition didn't like Dushi Kòrsou's presentation either: it was received with distrust, scorn and animosity. Totally predictable, what a bore.
However, Grupo 40 has already announced there will be an independent investigation, if not by staten. So there.
The US Trade Department's International Narcotics Control Strategy Report (INCSR) contains several paragraphs about the worrying fact that no action is taken by Curaçao to check the integroty problems.
Well? Why Wait?
Curaçao government has informed the press that in December 2010 the Public Prosecutor has looked into PM Shorty's financial capers, to wit the MOT declarations, and saw no reason to prosecute him.
The question remaining is, why wait so long to release this info? It's not as if everybody had the utmost trust in Shorty until now.
Even Arsjes didn't like MAN Koeiman's "joke" on tax debts. No doubt he'd been sweating all the time while Koeiman was giving his stand-up act, wondering when his own turn would come.
No further inquiry will be the only follow-up to the >4000 signature action, so parliament in all its self-serving wisdom has decided. If you want any comment on that, surely you can think of some expletives, quite possibly better ones than I can come up with, yourself. What it means is: they don't care a fart what we think, and why should they?
PM Shorty announced his two sinisters had made a deal with the Tax Person, reason for us to ask for a leak showing details. We got what may be an even better one, nr. 4 in a hopefully ongoing series: the two hadn't even bothered to declare income tax from 2005 through 2009. Same applies to MAN Koeiman. Man's Cooper's last declaration year was 2006; for health sinister Constancia it was 2005, Shorty the Great, 2008. All this at the date of screening, 2010. Some had fulfilled all their obligations, among whom Rosalia (remember him?)
Wonder how they manage to do that. When I don't declare in time, which is in April - long before October 2010 screening date, I get the most terrible and ridiculous fictive "estimated assessments" [ambtshalve aanslagen] with outrageous fines to boot. Something totally rotten in the tax emporium.
Now That's a Meeting!
There'll be a meeting of minds, using the word loosely, with the governor next week from Monday through Thursday to discuss the VDC-leaks. All parliament fractions have been invited.
An emergency meeting, no less. Somebody must be getting serious. And about time, to.
Vanddis Loses Face
There's a banner circulating on Fakebooc with the text "Stop het sponsoren van boeven" [stop sponsoring crooks], calling for a boycott of Vanddis gas stations. Seems to be quite popular; small wonder.
Never go there anyway, I like my FunMiles [unpaid advertisement] for free BigMacs [unpaid advertisement].
It Was a Joke
MFK fraction member Rosier yesterday morning in parliament started reading out loud alleged tax debts of PAR Sulvaran, de Jongh-Elhage, Jesus-Leito and Dennis Jackson and himself, totalling ANG650K. Then he presented 21 forms to be signed by all parliament members, enabling public perusal of their tax debts, and he signed his own with a flourish, taking good care to keep it on his desk. Even his coalition members were outraged. PM Shorty later said it was just a joke, Rosier had merely been reading fictive amounts from blank papers.
Chicho: "Thatsa some joke, hah boss? Hahahahaha!"
Groucho: "Zepirelli here may look like an idot, talk like an idiot and think like an idiot, but don't let that fool you. He really is an idiot."
Finally, Shorty announced that one of the two sinisters (didn't say which one) had arranged a settlement with the Taxman after having received a final assessment. Can somebody please leak that final assessment?
Stuff It, Shorty
For once, Dutch parliament (VVD) agrees with us: Shorty should take his
opinion and stuff it where there's no daylightisland and make it independent. But our people have a say in that—and we don't want it. At least, that last part—it's our island, not his.
Shorty is complaining that it will cause gasoline prices to go up, what hard luck for the poor Curaçao people, boo hoo. Watch the crocodile tears streaming down his cheeks; but higher gasoline prices mean higher profits at Vanddis gas stations. Finally, Shorty doesn't seem to understand that crude price goes up when the dollar goes down (and with it the guilder), in perfect sync.
Like, Schottegat, sorreee... pun in Dutch: Shorty[***]hole.
MAN Cleopa feels, and asserts, that it's 'undemocratic' for groups in society to call for abdication of the government. While he respects these developments, or so he claims, we all have to sit back and relax while the government decides how to react. Alternatively, we have to wait for new elections, then we'll see. After all, the government has been chosen and voted for, so it's
bossin power for four years. That's democracy, folks—Cleopa-style.
Civilized Frente Sivíl
Last night's protest meeting resulted in all groups uniting in one, for the time being: Frente Sivíl [citizen front]. As always, difficult to count the people there; estimates range between less than 1,000 to over 3,000. People tend to come late and leave early anyway. Everybody agreed, those 3 sinisters Schotte, Jamaloodin and el Hakim must go. Others feel they should all go. Frente Sivíl emphasized they want to bring "civilization back" to Curaçao government in "a civilized manner".
Surprise: it seems that the signature letter will be discussed in Staten next Wednesday, not yesterday.
No medicine for tetanus on the island; tough if you get infected. PAR Leeflang wonders why health sinister Constancia is prepared to spend almost 1 million guilders on a Cuban quack cure-all when there's no money to buy real medicine.
Hospital in Otrabanda, etc.
Otrabanda pressure groups feel the best location for the new hospital still is the present one in Otrabanda. They make some good arguments, but they would feel that way, wouldn't they? Then, we hear the new location has already been established: the Amstel brewery terrain! Oops, we're not allowed to say that anymore, or else... Then again, we're not allowed to say "Otrabanda" either. Here, a Bronx cheer!
Shut up, Shorty
No one cares what you have to say about your doubts whether oil-sanctions against Iran will work. You may not agree with the Dutch policy (but Aruba has already done so); it will not change one iota. You have no say in the matter and your opinion doesn't count. Please go home to count your money and don't bother us.
Shorty the megalomaniac also states he wants to see "proof" that Iran is working on a nuclear bomb. Give us a break, Shorty. But of course, with those sinisters of yours, this hardly comes as a surprise. And don't forget the good relations between the regimes of the Fat and the Short Dictator.
More and More Action
There is a new action group now, called Frente Sivíl [citizen front] which is supposed to bundle all those forces, now joined by an older one, Movementu Patria pa Tur [movement country for all]. One I didn't know about yet is Kòrsou Integro i Konfiabel [integer and credible Curaçao]. Between you and me, Dear Reader, that's overdoing it. There must be throngs of those movements.
And WS Piels wants a counter-demonstration pro-government. That could be fun!
PAR Finally Starts Moving
PAR leader de Jongh-Elhage declares that in the past fifty years there never has been a VCD-leak and that it never has been used as a political instrument. PAR holds PM Shorty responsible for several breaches of law which were made public last week and announces that, if the government does not take any action, PAR will take further steps towards an independent investigation.
Some Splainin' to Do
PM Shorty will explain in staten parliament about the tax leaks tomorrow. That promises to be a virtuoso acrobatic performance—not to say contortionist. Guaranteed to be a funny act, but will it be any good? Won't do any good, but we knew that already.
Leaks Like a Colander
Yet another set of confidential info has been leaked. This time, and well-timed it is, it's all about PM Shorty. A person calling itself Mary Doityourself sent out an email to press and all, among which several politicians, containing details of Ongebruikelijke Transacties [Disclosure of Unusual Transactions] forms. Mary figures, if nobody does anything, we should do it ourselves. To be sure it's a false and assumed name with a fake email address to boot. It makes for fascinating reading. Keep in mind that at the time Shorty was Eilandsraad (island parliament) member with a monthly salary of 5979.54.
From January to November 2009 he deposited a grand total of over ANG417,000 (almost $230,000). We have combined the info from four forms into one spreadsheet.
We ware especially mesmerized by the enormous checks Vanddis regularly writes out. And who are those mysterious "derdengelden" and Hu A Ng? Also the intriguing transaction with the International School. About the 1000/month from Night Life Entertainment we don't know what to think. Don't suppose Shorty moonlights there as a bouncer!
There seem to have been 2 of these emails before, but we haven't seen those. If you happen to have copies, please send them over. Thanks!
An item not even included in the list is two checks from "Foundation Gerrit Schotte" totalling $73,000, cashed by Shorty while in the USA. Brings the Grand Total up to well over half a million guilders, ANG548,445.69. 2012-03-05
Getting Even Worse
There are five primary schools now teaching in Dutch; the rest is in Papiamentu. However, there is not nearly enough place for pupils who want a Dutch-language education; some schools have almost ten times more requests than they come accommodate. Nothing new here... it's just getting worse.
2012-03-04 Not So Fast
The new law on illness costs which was supposed to start working on April 1 turns out to be a fools' joke. Even the sinisters agree it's no good. It was flim-flammed up much too fast and will now be rewritten for release on June 1.
Gas up (before Monday)
Gas price is going up again; while in January it was lowered to ANG2.25/liter it will go up next Monday to 2.383. It's because international prices have gone up; true enough, but still that same gasoline processed here and then shipped to the USA is expected to hit, later maybe, $5/gallon—which equals only ANG1.875/liter. Right now, it's only $3.716/gallon or ANG1.716/liter, 74% of our price.
Lotsa Luck with That!
New elections before June is what action groups Dushi Kòrsou (hey,listen, they all spell it differently) and Pro Pueblo [resp. 'Sweet Curaçao' and 'For the People'] want. Reasons? There are not just a few rotten apples, the government is full of rotten potatoes and is demolishing democracy. Parliament doesn't function either. Hear, hear.
Meanwhile, Duski Kòrsou has supplicated Arsjes if they may pretty please be present at the parliament discussion of their signature letter?
Whatever Became of That?
PS justice sinister Wilsoe announced last year that he intended to reduce criminality that year by 10-20%. If he'd succeeded we would have heard, don't you agree?
Between 1995 and 2008 (last year the CBS-site shows) crime victims per year went down from 39% to 26% of the population, but since then burglaries have gone up with 20%.
Prince, who has been fired as per last December 31 from his director post at Wega di Number [numbers game lottery] is going to court to fight his contract conclusion; he wants his salary to continue or indemnification. The new management, installed by Shorty's government, has "no confidence" in Prince. Interestingly Robby dos Santos is a member of that new management; maybe, just maybe, Prince is too honest for 'em.
Into Thin Air
Architect Carlos Weeber, in another letter to the editors or we'd never learn about it from our media, tells us about 100K + 200K that just plain disappeared [watch my magic wand: POOF!] from government budgets for to-build buildings. Together ~1/3 of a million... it all adds up you know!
One of those projects was instigated by Rosalia; both are FKP projects. They seem to have money to burn, anyway.
Insel Air Prefers Insular
Again, Insel Air goes to court (they just love that, don't they) against DAE who have the temerity to fly to Santo Domingo with a wet-leased MD83! What chutzpah!
All this while Insel Air, they say at least, has enormous efforts at enormous costs to keep within the law and train pilots. In reality, Insel Air buys geriatric MD83s and fixes them up so old ALM/DCA pilots don't have to retrain.
Worst (for Insel at least) is, the DAE MD83 is registered in the USA and so, DAE has no problems with Curaçao FAA degradations.
New Public Action
It still looks like next Monday Staten parliament will, finally, have a meeting on Grupo Kòrsow's petition. As nobody knows what time the subject will be dealt with, they plan to be there at 9 in the morning. "They" includes Grupo 40, Kòrsou Uní, Akshon Curaçao and trade unions. They don't expect much of a result, also because all this has been kept out of any parliament discussion up to now, and call for a new action at 19:00 at the SSK trade union building.
WS Piels warns that all those leaks of tax debts will have a negative effect (are you ready for this?) on foreign investors. They may be afraid their data will become known to anybody. And anyway, it's the companies owned by those guys that are in debt, not the guys themselves. Besides, he adds in another streak of his kind of logic, don't we all have debts? (I don't.) And as all letter-to-the-editor writers for once agree, how is it possible that those debts grew to such fantastic proportions?
Nice try, Piels, but if you're serious, better discard your loony 80-20 ideas.
VDC security's CVT [supervisory committee] publicly states that VDC regret it's not possible for them to work in peace and quiet, what with all sorts of allegations uttered against them. They warn us not to believe all stories going around (like this one?) but fail to make clear what not to and what to believe. They also state that there have been many allegations, but not one single official complaint has been lodged.
Ombudsman's office states they have nothing to do with the newly leaked documents, but that these may come from a meanwhile fired worker at VDC. Shorty and PS justice sinister Wilsoe deny everything, what else is new: they "haven't read the papers" so can't comment.
Gee, I wonder how much you get paid as a committee member.
Deeper in Debt
We are quite used to our country building up more and more debt, but our politicians manage to do much better. Maybe there's a connection. Nevertheless, the show goes on: yesterday media and several parliamentaries received a new batch of documents which expose that sinisters Jamaloodin and el Hakim are even deeper in [expletive] sorry, debt. El Hakim has an ANG286K ($157K) debt with SVB social security bank and Jamaloodin over 1.7M ($935K).
We'll Decide That
"It is not allowed any longer to call the Amstel terrain the Amstel terrain," says PM Shorty. Talk about dictatorial. The real name is Scadta and that's the name we must use from now on, Shorty stipulates. But that "real" name is yet another brand name, so what's going on here? Besides, how do you pronounce it?
It's Like That, Huh?
Trouble seems to be, gradually it becomes clearer bit by bit, Central Bank has loaned Curaçao Aqualectra ANG300M ($165M) under pressure of MFK PM Shorty and sinister Jamaloodin. But if Aqualectra fails in its obligations St. Maarten will have to pay up as well. They don't like that, and who shall gonna blame 'em?
You No Coma Clean, We Breaka You Fingers
An IT-manager of VCD Veiligheidsdienst [security] has been taken to a hotel room by two Colombians and was pressured to give details on the network, cooperators and naturally! the leaks on the sinisters. They refused to identify themselves, but stated they were acting on instructions of PM Shorty. They also asked for lists of passwords so they could copy all files to their hard drives; if they didn't get those they would start hacking.
If this sounds like a mafia-operation to you, so it does to the IT-manager who next went to the ombudsman, who in turn sent a report to the governor. Later, the manager was denied access to his work. Another quite scintillating detail: an outside forensic service has copied all VDC files by order of PM Shorty.
An Expert Agrees
MFK sinister Constancia has budgeted ANG900K, say 1M, for a pilot project to study the effects of Heberprot-P—what we've called a Cuban quack cure. Now surgeon Rodney Juliet has written her an open letter, again emphasizing that she'd better put
herour money on prevention. But will she pay attention?
Medicine = Money
Like in the USA, in Curaçao MDs may run their own pharmacies. Not so in Holland, but even there I guess they may own shares in them. Anyway, of course this tends to run up prices. The good doctor would rather prescribe expensive brand medicine than generic brands and make more money. The president of Curaçao general practitioners' union knows nothing about this confusion of interests or he "would take action at once." Why doesn't anybody tell him, or why doesn't he take a ride around town? There are all-too-many botikas next to combined MD offices; so-called "medical centers.".
MAN Cooper tells us that DAE's "unyielding and respectless [that word again] attitude" is a danger to Curaçao. The government is working on an aviation strategy towards agreements with other regional countries, with stipulations against unfair competition (they call this a "free skies" policy); these agreements may be terminated because of non-compliance. [But how can they be terminated before they have been agreed on?]
I Don't Get It
All I understand from the newspapers now is that there is a tremendous quarrel between Curaçao government and the Central Bank; so heavy that several directors there have already contacted their lawyers. It's about a debenture bond for [total] $150M to finance St. Maarten harbor. Again, they seem to want to fire Curaçao bank director Tromp; it's like a conditioned reflex: when you mention his name, they want to fire him. Which even Jamaloodin admits they can't.
Maybe tomorrow an article will appear written by somebody who understands what's the point; if so, I'll inform you. Sure, it may be me who's obtuse.
Still don't get it. What seems to be going on is that Curaçao sinister Jamaloodin and/or his counterparts in St. Maarten don't agree on how the Central Bank works and try get a grip on that by illegal/illegitimate means. This could result in the Central Bank falling apart—which may be what they are aiming for. But that seems as good as impossible; tough.
Trouble seems to be, gradually it becomes clearer bit by bit, Central Bank has loaned Curaçao Aqualectra ANG300M ($165M) under prssure of MFK PM Shorty and sinister Jamaloodin. But if Aqualectra fails in their obligations St. Maarten will have tro pay as well. They don't like that, and who shall gonna blame 'em?
Curaçao Tsunami Risk Management committee notes that the "New Harbor" in Schottegat is "tsunami sensitive." While this applies by default to all Curaçao harbors (and almost all hotels) it seems unwise if not downright foolish to build a new hospital there, as now planned. For some reason, especially MAN Cooper seems all set on building on the old Amstel brewery location.
To keep a cool head, the Amstel location is lowest on the orange list, danger range Red-Orange-Yellow-Green. Still unwise.
Holland will investigate if AMS Schiphol airport is guilty of power abuse: the airport keeps growing and tariffs grow with it. Makes us wonder even more about the downright outrageous plans for "our" Hato airport.
After Isla refinery has, finally, paid the water bill for several houses that had to be cleaned up after the white powder that escaped at the cat-cracker incident, action groep Basta! advises all those who had to clean up at the time to send a request for payment to Isla.
The Fat Hits the Fan, uhh...
... the shot's in the fire! Tax info about meveral sinisters is now making the rounds via an email Oordeel zelf!!! [judge for yourself], addressed to 'anybody who loves Curaçao.'
We received yet another version with covering letter in English, from which we quote: "Although I'm very strongly against breach of confidentiality of our citizen's MEDICAL, TAX and BANK data under "normal" circumstances one can no longer accept gross improper behavior from the top executives of our country." Here are the documents:
Jamaloodin 1 - Jamaloodin 1 - el Hakim 1 - el Hakim 2 - el Hakim 3 - el Hakim 4
Like, in Aruba
Sinister Cooper states that sinisters should be exempt from airport screening, like "everywhere else in the world, for example Aruba." Also "their entourage," whatever that means, should be be waved through. Like El Hakim's?
As usual this man with a mouth even bigger than his mudbelly doesn't know what he's talking about. Even if a directive by the Curaçao Civil Aviation Authority has now been hastily produced,stipulating the sinisters and goons must be waved through, this contradicts a 1971 Montreal international aviation protocol signed by the kingdom of the Netherlands (we, or us). Phooyeh... so what; only marks on paper. Lawlessness rules the land.
Kranshi head Daal was supposed to go back to work last Thursday, but decided not to in order to avoid further stress'n'struggle. Meanwhile, a committee has been installed to look into the matter, but Daal claims this is not what you'd call impartial and neutral and he wants it replaced. Among too many other things to mention here, what summons suspicions is that after Daal had won his case in court, WS Piels (who calls himself a politician) announced over the radio that, now, it was time for Plan B.
Gee, I wonder how much they pay those committee members!
Where Can He Be?
It's a small island... But in spite of that, sinister Cooper cannot be reached; he's what they used to call incommunicado since the Central Bank announced that ole mudbelly never asked for a debenture bond, as he is claiming now; he just wanted to finance his infrastructure improvements. One of the time-proven ways for a politician to rake it in is a large public project.
Instead of the debenture bond CB proposes to set up a financing fund to control the project, with as members the consumers' union, foundation for traffic safety, local financial sector organizations (no bankers need apply) and the chamber of commerce (no bankers need apply); which would make it very hard for a politician to make a decent living. But it seems Cooper never realized that there is no essential difference between debenture bonds and regular loans: they're both loans.
Medical specialists union has written a letter to sinister Constancia expressing their worries about the way things are going with the new and badly needed hospital. In short, they wonder if things are going at all. It isn't even clear how much the new building will cost; what the such-as-it-is budget covers; and where the money is supposed to come from. In their opinion, it will not come from anywhere. But Constancia doesn't talk to them. How like her.
Staten will discuss the signature-action on March 5. But Arsjes, so we hear, was irritated because Dushi Kòrsou "again" had sent a letter with "false accusations" - while they don't understand what he's talking about. Maybe he does so himself, occasionally; give him the benefit of the doubt, although he doesn't deserve it.
May Get InterestingGet on with It, Already
First, Venezuelan Fat Dictator Chávez is risking sanctions by sending a tanker with diesel oil to Syria, worth 43,000 fill-ups for Assad's Russian T-72 tanks. As his main customer still is the USA, risky indeed. Also, he's getting less and less powerful in OPEC; with Qhaddafi's Lybia out his only remaining ally there is Iran.
Then, the USA oil production boom will almost double its 2010 production, from 5.1 million barrels/day to 9.1 in 2015. That's only half of it's present use, but with the enormous natural gas reserves the USA foresees an autonomous energy supply in 2022. Then, where will PdVSA go with their precious Orinoco oil? China is also busy on the fracking front.
Next, presidential candidate Henrique Capriles may well win the next election, even with Chávez still around.
I mention all this not only because right now not much else is going on here except carnival parties, but also because it can get very important for us. Capriles looks like being a much more reasonable man—bad news for Piels and his gang of goons. Then, in what amounts to an energy gut, what can we reasonably expect to happen with PdVSA and Isla refinery? Their contract runs out in 2019 and they may well decide just to keep the Pile of Rust running as long as possible, until it collapses of its own.
MAN Cooper tells us that not only will the roads be repaired, about time too, but the entire infrastructure will be tackled; grand total ANG500M-600M/USD300M. It should take 6 to 10 years and according to the Central Bank the needed ANG50M/year can be found in the local market.
It's just by a coïncidence we found out that the Stichting Wegenfonds Curaçao (foundation road fund) is presided by our old acquaintance Tilly Pikerie.
Poof! Goes The Budget
For some reason, no doubt a very good one, it's not possible to introduce Basisverzekering [base insurance] on April 1, as planned. Every month of delay costs the government ANG6M/$3.3. P.P.-cardholders (free medical care) were supposed to start paying a total of ANG38/year as from October 12 last year; but for, again, some reason this has not happened. Worst part is, this endangers the building of a new hospital, but I didn't even have to tell you so.
I'd Cancel, Myself
The government owes FKP public housing ANG295M (over $160M) on unpaid rent subsidies from 1981 to 2011; for those who don't have a calculator, that's ANG15M/year. The board twice arranged a meeting with MFK sinister Jamaloodin, but he canceled both. Two years from now, FKP will be kaput if nothing is done. I guess so, yeah.
The Parke Tropikal zoo will disappear and be replaced by a dam. (In Constancia's lingo that probably means a reservoir.) This will come as a big surprise to workers there; some of them told us only yesterday there was a master plan that entailed enlarging the park. The zoo, originally proeftuin [experimental garden] may not amount to much as a zoo, but is as a park quite popular for recreation.
They Must Be Serious!
The Vaste Statencommittee [permanent parliamentary committee] will have one meeting per month to discuss the new hospital. Now we're getting somewhere, slow. Maximum cost is estimated at $108M, which means ANG195M, but we'll see about that; and it should be operational in 2015. We'll see about that as well—they're still quarrelling about the location, which is one of the first things a real architect informs himself about.
That committee hasn't been meeting for the past year. Gee, I wonder how much you get paid as a committee-member.
No Surprise: No Reply
Action group Dushi Kòrsou is disappointed that they have not had a reply to their January 17th letter asking for an independent investigation of Curaçao government members. The fact that a large part of the population (4062 signatures) is just ignored shows "gross contempt for the people." Well may they be disappointed, but what did they expect, anyway?
Dushi Kòrsou, supported by Pro Pueblo, E40 and Akshon Curaçao now asks for a permanent committee to investigate in a structural manner integrity problems and corrupt acts in the island government. Good luck with that, kids.
Gee, I wonder how much you'd get paid as a member of that committee.
Above the Law
All us suckers sheepishly submit to a not-very-effective frisking by airport security whenever we want to board a plane, but our
bossessinisters want to get a free pass; and by the way, they don't want their entourage to be screened, either. Jamaloodin acting up. Again. For once, Hato airport manager FØ0L Adriaens says this cannot be allowed; there are international agreements here.
Show Me Yours, Then I'll Show You Mine
PAR was told this by MFK sinister Jamaloodin about his tax papers: if all PAR parliament members make theirs public, he will follow suit. Of course, those 8 PAR members are not in a position that calls for a screening, so it's yet another feint; later in the meeting, he said that the law will not allow him to make his tax figures public. (I doubt this very much.) But he did not deny the debt.
Jamaloodin kept asking for greater tax info security, but nobody in parliament reacted, not even his own party members; except for WS Piels who blamed the media for all the trouble
Turns out, added to Jamaloodin's tax debts he has a 1 million guilders debt with SVB social security and 200,000 with Aqualectra utilities; grand total 1.7-2.2M guilders (at least $1M) which definitely makes him a liability.
Rumors are that our Great Leaders are working to remit his debt; and worse, that Jamaloodin has tampered with his water meter. Wouldn't put it past him; quite in character.
In 2008, a complaint was lodged by Frida Ahrendt against her former employer, present MFK sinister el Hakim for tax evasion, fraud and forgery, but no action was taken by the public prosecutor; nor on her follow-ups in 2009 and 2011. The prosecutor looked at this as a civil rather than a criminal case. She has now approached the Gemeenschappelijk Hof van Justitie [common court of justice] to order the prosecutor to start a criminal procedure. He has No Comment.
Blame Banks And Business
WS Piels blames our economic problems on the banks and private industry: "You can't borrow any money in Curaçao without bank intervention" (he probably prefers borrowing from loan sharks) and those PAR-scoundrels have systematically stopped protectionism (which is in keeping with the GATT accords, of course; and a good thing, too.) But Piels wouldn't care who signed what, when.
Piels calls banks and commerce "parasites and vultures." Even if he may have a point, look who's talking—a politician! Apart from the scatterbrained logic: fulminate against trade and in the same breath ask for protectionism.
Now We Worry
FØOL Godett wonders why Arsjes complies with sinister Jamaloodin's request for a parliament meeting on the tax leaks. He feels what's happening is undemocratic. If even Godett feels so, we truly have reason to worry.
Former PAR sinister of justice Dick feels it's inappropriate to prosecute bailiff Specht who released tax info on sinisters Jamaloodin and el Hakim. Dick's idea is that his act was in the public interest and asks why, then, MFK PM Shorty was not prosecuted when he showed bank statements of Central Bank director Tromp on television. "Next thing, we'll have political prisoners," says Dick.
Free Air Competition
After DAE received a letter from Curaçao Civil Air Authority reminding them they should keep to a 2007 tariff agreement, they announced they would not. The then government stipulated minimum tariffs, but DAE feels this stops free competition. (They only have one competitor on the flights to St. Maarten, InselAir.)
Next day, MAN mudbelly Cooper said in a radio interview that DAE should not offer lower tariffs, as this would result in unfair competition. Really!
This morning's Staten parliament meeting could not be held because there were only 6 members and there should be a quorum of 11 out of 22. Hey, listen, it's carnival time!
Interestingly, several members (the media don't tell us how many) of PAR were present but preferred not to sign the attendance register. An old trick.
Arsjes then held a preach about what a pity this waste of money was. He probably has better uses for it.
MFK sinister Jamaloodin kicked up a stink when Hato airport security wanted to subject him to a screening and told a family member not to be bothered and just walk through. Jamaloodin even threatened to have the security personnel member fired. This happened end 2011, but our fine media only now report what the redu rumor-mill has been passing along all the time.
Some Splaining to Do
PAR wants a Staten parliament meeting to ask MFK sinister el Hakim what's the upshot of his grandiosely named plans, like "Snowball," to stimulate the economy, as it only keeps shrinking. (This year, only 16 groups participated in the children's carnival parade because parents complained they couldn't afford it.)
Another Letter to The Editor Speaks Truth
Rogelio Chirino in Amigoe newspaper: at the last 2010 elections, sinister Monk got 180 votes; parliament president Arsjes 158; justice sinister Wilroe 0 (zero). All three belong to the Piels party, Pueblo Soberano.
Chirino goes on to say that MAN sinister Mudbelly Cooper claims that the roads will be fixed three years from now, but everybody in the know agrees it will take more like 6. Besides, there's no money anyway. This causes an average car damage of ANG2000/$1100 per year; if correct, downright frightening.
Here's an idea for Cooper: why not stop building those useless humps, that have no effect anyway, and leave the holes in the roads instead? They work just as well and are free!
Saved by the Web!
As it turns out (as usual, in a democracy we never get asked) the new internet code for our Proudly Independent Nation is CW Charlie Whiskey; stands for Curaçao Willemstad (not KT Kilo Tango Kòrsow Tulaville.)
Only the government, and and maybe a couple of other fools, will use it because the registration fee charged by UNA university is way too high—like four times what you pay elsewhere; we'll stick to www.****.com
Something in That, I Suppose
Raad van Advies [advisory council] suggests a PAR proposal to stop sexual intimidation in the workplace is discriminatory because it only concerns civil servants.
MFK wants a Staten parliament discussion on their own sinister Constancia, because she's had the chutzpah, the temerity, the impudence, the brass-as-boldness to sit down with PAR to discuss some problems. That's not transparent and publicly irresponsible! (As so often, how I wish I were kidding.)
Shows Us Where It's at
Seems sinisters Jamaloodin and el Hakim have lodged a complaint with Landsrecherche [The Cops] about the
guyhero (if clumsy) who published their tax arrears. Not that they have any trouble with those arrears per se. Not a word!
Right Now, In Curaçao!
Old CTB slogan to bait
suckerstourists. The botikas [drugstores] lack the money (they say) and credit to buy medicines, so at least some diabetics can't get any. Tough.
MFK PM Shorty, on a visit to €urope, found time to go by Transparency International. You may not remember why, it's so long ago, but we do: he promised to have them investigate his government. Mark, he just went by for "a short visit"—he hasn't asked them anything. Not that such an investigation would be of any help or use; hey, maybe that's the reason!
When did he promise, you ask? Oh, that was last November. No doubt Shorty figures, as Transparency takes at least a year to get results, when he waits long enough by then his government may be getting ready for the new 2014 elections. Après nous, les prochains brigands.
Because all public insurance companies, but especially that for civil servants, are hopelessly behind with their payments, the botikas [drugstores] are losing creditability with their suppliers and threaten that it's a matter of weeks before recipes cannot be fulfilled any more. So let's eat cake, already.
Wind generators, turbines - no matter how you spell it, it's all wrong - will be turning on Curaçao East side in May; no news yet when those in Tera Kòrá will be active; together they will deliver 20% of all energy needed. Oh yeah? We also hear that in 2030 60% of Curaçao's energy will be delivered by "renewable energy." Oh yeah?
Okay now, which of you sporting persons wants to bet me on this? I darst you, I double-darst you: it will not. No taking me up on this by PM Shorty, not-so-coïncidentally our sinister of energy (yet another bet I stand to win.)
Manufacturer Vestas needs the business badly - they're going bankrupt fast, so where will we get spares? Why worry! The sooner those monskirs fall apart, the less it will cost us.
No More Fun
Asogas must stop giving away Fun Miles at their gas stations, has been declared by Bureau Post and Telecommunications. Whatever they have to do with that. Anyway, Asogas is considering going to court and fears this is a start of government free market interference in favor of a small group. Keep tuned!
Last news: Asogas will go on giving away Fun Miles.
No Money, No TV
Telecuraçao TV will not transmit the Carnaval Gran Marcha this year. Thing is, the groups in the parade want to get paid for it. They have a point: Telecuraçao has been intensively approaching advertisers in Holland for commercials during the (quite popular) show.
Telecuraçao finally gave in and will pay an as yet unknown sum to the groups.
Forward Down, Party Soldiers
There is a long-running quarrel between the ADC diagnostic center and its director, Potmis. The ministers (Constancia) feel he should be maintained, but the ADC board has now fired him. I don't know what it's all about; maybe because I do know that, after the same sinister requested the media not to publish ministers' statements on this, not a single statement has appeared in the media. Long live the Real Free Press!
So it was a nice surprise to read in Antilliaans Dagblad that Potmis, co-founder of the Dutch Islam Democrat party (a contradiction in terms if I ever saw one) did not pass a check by FSC Forensic Services Caribbean. Sinister Constancia accepted him anyway, but PM Shorty does not.
ADC-personnel went to Ali Baba's Thieves Grotto, Fort Amsterdam, in protest and now, Potmis is out. But personnel wanted him in—so don't ask. Finally, Potmis stepped out on his own.
Old Trick, No Treat
PAR wanted a staten [parliament] meeting on the Kingdom conference; they would like to learn why the government before the meeting declared they would hollow out the Statuut, only to embrace the Kingdom after the meeting. But the silk shorts dictator took good care PAR didn't get a chance to have this interesting item discussed. When he had PAR Jacobi forcefully removed, all other PAR members left as well.
One day later, Godett moved to stop yet another Staten-discussion on this discussion which was unanimously voted through—except for PAR of course.
PAR lodged a complaint with governor Goedgedrag because this means only motions approved for discussion by the majority can be discussed in parliament.
Again, staten [parliament] refuses to follow a court order. Staten should offer another job to a fired clerk, but simply invites her to apply for another job; it's claimed that's the same thing. Besides, they already hired another clerk, so that's that. If they understood what it meant they'd say "fait accompli!"
Back to court for the clerk? This is another plain revenge action by credit card Arsjes.
Upshot: the clerk was cleared of all imputations by Rekenkamer auditing: when she started in her job, it was a "customary" way of using a credit card. Telling, that.
Protesting Civil Servants
Personnel of Kranshi [civil registry] is protesting against their "terrorist" boss Daal; he was fired by Shorty and his gang, but the judge ordered him back. Now 15 of 40 Kranshi "workers" have gone to their minister Monk in another effort to force Daal out.
Throughout the years, there have been many complaints from civilians about the awful service at Kranshi. Some workers are good and civil while many are rude and uncivil. They hold long private phone calls while you are standing there waiting and more in that vein. The impression definitely is that Daal wanted to improve this. Also, the term "their minister" used above is appropriate; there's a photo of the 15 protesters on the Caribiana web site, and a letter-writer recognizes 11 of them in photographs he made at a PS-meeting.
After Daal was forced to take a two week vacation, personnel returned to their
workseats awaiting am impartial investigation. There will also be an audit of Kranshi.
Too Bad, Old Timers
AOV (old age pension) minimum age will go from 60 to 65 years in 1914. At once. Too bad if you're 58 now and counted on getting it then. We're being told it's the only way to keep the reserves "positive" - until 1930, that is. After then, the deluge!
Even that scheme will only work if annual GPD growth continues at the "present rate" of 2.6%. Alas, the "present rate" in fact is only 0.7% or, more realistically, minus 0.6%. Go figure!
They Just Gave Up
Algemene Rekenkamer Curaçao [audit office] has a lot to say about the yearly accounts of DOW public works and it's all bad. Accounting is such a mess that they can't make head nor tail out of it. It's MAN mudbelly Cooper's department, but to be fair, although this is about 2009 it was all the same from at least 2000. Endemic Curaçao government mess.
But the same ARC, in a reaction to PS Piels' asking PS minister Wilsoe for an evaluation of the court of justice accounts, declares they see no reason for that and, at the same time, that the judges have not stopped it from such an investigation. They do state that Piels' and Wilsoe's questions are "not correct." Which tends to confirm that Piels' questions are just another way to try and get back at the judges for their treatment of another party-gang, Arsjes.
Just a few years ago, when Venezuela's Fat Dictator Chávez offered eye patients free treatment in Caracas, with a free flight thrown in, the medical world warned that here, health care conditions were much better—and they were right. Now, with our present sinister of
sicknesshealth Constancia, Sehos hospital, once among the best in this region, has deteriorated so much that the Dutch prefer to send Bonaire patients to Aruba or Colombia.
They Worry along with Us
To explain once again, Curaçao is an autonomous country, part of the Kingdom of the Netherlands. Got it? You don't have to understand, just accept it's so. Now the ministers of the kingdom are worried and well they might be, about the 2012 Curaçao budget. The 2008/9 yearly accounts of government enterprises and foundations are "bothersome." Some of the largest have a strongly negative own capital, which unless proper steps are taken soon forms a direct threat to the national budget. The more so because the budget contains ambitious plans for old age pensions and health care, but also figures very high income from those government-owned companies and foundations.
Bounder's Chutzpah Knows No Bounds
Now PS Arsjes is complaining that PAR doesn't respect him in his function as Statenvoorzitter (parliament president)—they dare criticize him but should choose for "discord or unity." No doubt it's not a coïncidence that his PS boss Piels has sent a letter to (also PS) sinister of justice Wilsoe about corruption among judges. That judge must have really hurt them.
What Do We Know.
Nothing! That is, as much as they tell us. In 2010, UTS telecommunications and Aqualectra utilities jointly decided to buy the old Amstel brewery terrain for their new headquarters for an outrageous price, about 2.5 times the going rate. Now, they're being sued by project developer Scadta for all costs, as Aqualectra management (read: Shorty's government) stopped all activities last year—the first we heard about it. Transparency hits again! And what about future UTS plans?
Whatever Gave Them That Idea!
Entrepreneurs club VBC complains that the government lacks a master plan to realize the ambitions of the 2012 budget. "It rather seems governing is based on impulses, emotions and opportunism centrally focussed on own and/or party interests." As a result confidence in the government is decreasing.
Makes you think a bit, Jeeves It's just a rough guess, but about 25% of the items on this page have been distilled from Letters to Ye Editors. Now, that really makes One Wonder where the editors are at. I mean, shouldn't they go out and find out for themselves? Isn't that what some of us pay subscriptions for?
Oh Marjo, where are you now that we really need you (once again)? She's been reduced to writing Letters to Ye Editors!
Wiels Barks, Leeflang Bites Back
Ex PAR minister Leeflang has started an action for libel, slander and affronts against Wiels and newspaper Ultimo Noticia. They have published several items repeating allegations against Leeflang for which Piels lodged a complaint with the prosecutor, who saw no reason to follow up.
He Was Paid by Whom?
A private road, illegally built by a project developer on a terrain belonging to somebody else, has been badly damaged by all that rain we've had. Now sinister mudbelly Cooper has instructed DOW [public works] to repair it. We are paying, of course; this while the same Cooper keeps complaining there is no money for proper road maintenance.
What Else Did They Expect
A strike of Isla refinery contract workers, which resulted in the usual long lines at gas stations, is still going on. Their complaint is that more and more work is going to Venezuelans and Venezuelan contractors; which has been going on ever since PdVSA took over. Also, as far as we can find out all those guys don't pay taxes here, just like PdVSA. None at all.
What else to expect from Chávez' "anti-colonialist" socialist revolution?
Arsjes Must Pay Back
The judge found that Arsjes must pay back his full salary "earned" when he "worked" for Selikor (after getting the job one day before the directors—that is: the government—was replaced.) It's ANG89K/USD49K. The judge had some harsh words for Arsjes: he, as a university graduate, should under these circumstances never have accepted this job. Hah! Almost forgot the best part: Arsjes is supposed to pay compound interest as well.
Next day, Arsjes had the chutzpah to publish a press-release in which he accused the judge of "obvious subjectivity," darkly adding that the guy had been appointed by Holland (and a good thing, too... no wonder he resents it.) Arsjes added that he would pay up (he'd better) to compensate the people for the ANG100K "wasted by Selikor in the witch-hunt for him." What a noble guy! Brings the tears to our eyes. Tears of laughter.
Never Thought of That
KLM Airlines, in an unholy alliance with the so-called Space Port, has announced ticket sales is "flourishing." Small wonder: the gimmick is, KLM buys the tickets and then distributes them to air-miles earners via a lottery.
We Don't Need No Stinkin' Screening
A former worker for sinister el Hakim, Dr. Frida F. Ramos-Arendt, has written the editor of Antilliaans Dagblad (2012-01-06) that a screening of this personage is superfluous as she knows he is a quote swindler unquote. He committed tax fraud by never paying the ANG60K salary tax subtracted from her salary and her complaints at the public prosecutor over 2008, 2009 and 2011 did not result in any action.
El Hakim reportedly also told her he was a member of Lebanese terror organization Hezbollah, because he "resented Jews." Her suspicions were also raised because el Hakim just happened to be in Argentina during the 1994 AMIA Jewish Center terror attack (100 dead and 300 wounded.)
While we're at it, check this out.
CAT Cracks Up
After the infamous cat-cracker has been down for a while at BOO's request, they're starting up again. We keep upwind whenever we can. This was not the promised 75-days maintenance shutdown. Isla apologizes in advance for the stench and noise; well, that's something but doesn't help much.
Fast Work (if You Can Get It)
MAN sinister Koeiman has installed a committee that's supposed to enumerate the Isla refinery problems. In four (4) days. Then, they have one (1) more day to come with recommendations for a solution. Based on their conclusions, there'll be a workgroup that's expected to present a solution in four (4) weeks. As the problems have been chronic since 1985, that would be a real miracle.
Gee, I wonder how much you get paid as a committee or workgroup member.
Copa Airlines is opening new routes to Curaçao as from June this year, after (or so sinister el Hakim claims) one visit by him and Chata-director Dindial to Panamá. They will start with four flights a week (el Hakim asked for two), need no seat guarantee and no participation in marketing. "Isn't that a remarkable performance?" el Hakim asks, meaning Dindial and him. No, it's really not so remarkable.
Then el Hakim spoils it all by comparing this with Colombian Avianca, who haven't been able to bring one (1) tourist more here.
Look Who's Talking!
Yes, it's silk-underwear credit card Arsjes complaining about the use parliament members made of credit cards. In the past, you understand. The PAR-past, you understand. That's all over and done with, Arsjes. Could you by any chance be passing the dummy? We are much more interested in present
abuse of credit cards.
Don't Bet on It
Dushi Kòrsou has delivered its letter to Arsjes, requesting installing an independent commission to investigate the integrity of "our" ministers, now reinforced by 4062 signatures. They want a reply in two weeks. I hope they're not holding their breath.
Awfully Good Question
Dutch parliament member Lucassen advised minister Spies to "look for" the billions of subsidy Holland has paid to the islands in the past. "I've been looking myself, but I can't find out what happened to that money."
Hint: Look in the pockets of your Dutch colleagues, Lucassen. A lot should have ended up there.
Ein Volk, Ein Front!
A motion was accepted with everybody (except PAR) voting for, that in meetings like last week's St. Maarten disaster all representatives should vote the same way and Follow the Leader, whatever act he pulls. Another notch down towards totalitarianism.
No Competition... Or Else!
There are two combinations of gas stations in Curaçao, one of which is AsoGas who give out Fun Miles when you tank there. This has now been officially forbidden by the government (which is led by PM Shorty, whose partner is director of VandDis gas-stations, the main player in Copda, the other combination.) Looks like Asogas won't take this lying down.
Next day, Shorty's father-in-law van der Dijs, owner of VandDis, declared that he had nothing to with this. Whatever gave us that idea? Asogas, on their part, said they would go on giving out Fun Miles. Only Curoil's two stations announced they'd stop. Keep tuned.
Cruise Tourism Down
Even the Curaçao Tourist Board liars couldn't fake a hockey stick upward bend in the cruise tourism statistics. It has definitely gone down, and that hasn't to do with that Eye-Talian cruise ship Costa Concordia going down—wait for that effect to ripple. But, say the
goodpeople at CTB, that's really not bad because hotel tourism will be going up (we'll see).
In that case, why the song and dance about the urgent need for a second mega-pier?
We Told You so, First
Newspaper Antilliaans Dagblad publishes a sensational item: former Shell-director Wawoe is quoted in a book Slagschaduwen, Erfenis van een koloniaal verleden by Dutch journalist Colet van der Ven and tells about the circumstances when Shell left. Shell offered to clean the ground down to 1 or 1.5m and to leave the terrain clean. But employment was more important to the Curaçao government, so another deal was reached under the explicit condition that Shell could not be held responsible.
This was confirmed by Jaime de Sola, another former Shell direction member, in a radio interview.
Asphalt Lake. What Antilliaans Dagblad misses are the other allegations appearing on this site last November: Shell offered to pay 350-450 million for the removal of the asphalt lake but the Antillian government preferred to do it themselves. 'Nos mes por!' You may well laugh, but it's rather sad. So Shell transferred that money to the Curaçao government.
Now, where are those 400 million dollars? Come out, come out, wherever you are! Check out the link, you won't believe your eyes - but better believe 'em.
Spies Get Serious
Dutch minister of kingdom relations Spies threatens to freeze the SEI social-economic initiative if she doesn't get a future vision on Isla refinery pretty pronto. But the Curaçao government doesn't think she really means it. Besides, they're working so hard on it! It's a study consisting of 9 (yeah, nine) studies and it has been set in motion in December 2010.
Their Only Way Out
The kingdom-meetings in Sint Maarten, with representatives from Aruba, Curaçao, Holland and St. Maarten turned out to be worth nothing, as the coalition partners left without anybody accomplishing anything because the other partners did not agree with them. Of course those old Arsjes and Wiels led the way. They felt they were "not respected" which by now is getting really old.
Hey, can't somebody murder those two? Just a suggestion. [It's a joke, for crying out loud—I realize fully well that getting rid of two worthless guys in exchange for umpteen years of your life is not worth it.]
5% or 6%? Who Knows?
While there was an intensive campaign last year to brainwash consumers into forcing entrepreneurs to presenting a "proper" bill with a lot of details I haven't seen on any, many businesses were left wondering. Has it, as a matter of fact, gone up? We never were officially informed; had to get it from the newspapers.
And mentioning those fishwraps, I have not been able to discover what Wiels' acting up when the budget was presented has resulted in. Is his precious if to us idiotic 80-20 deal in there now, or not?
Too Little, Too Late
AOW old age pension is in trouble; in 2011 there was paid out ANG100M more than came in. The choice is between a 1% higher premium or raising the age from 60 tot 65 years. Or, of course, paying out ANG600 instead of 834/month and forget about the raise to 1000, or even with 3%. Present reserves will run out next year.
But MAN minister Koeiman wants to wait until his complete packet is ready. When pigs have wings?
As from today, you won't have to pay import duties on
clownelectrical cars—in case you'd want one. Nobody plans to import them, also there's no place to charge them; so the government won't miss much money coming in. PM Shorty once more declares that the government is oh-so green and environment-conscious. We all wish they'd show that with regard to Isla refinery.
Meanwhile, it seems in England electric cars are such a huge success that there are more charging points than cars!
Curaçao, which with its present population and also serving the other islands of the former N.A. should have four neurologists, will shortly have nØne. It's hard to attract new ones, what with the crummy old hospital and a government that wants to downgrade medical services (to save money which they'd rather use for other purposes.) Now the medical world is afraid that sinister Constancia will compensate by importing less than fully trained medics from Cuba. So are we.
Be afraid—be very afraid.
Arsjes Active Again
The Staten parliament meetings can be followed via a webcast. This was done by a company called Chacoline. After the experiment had run for a couple of months, a company Savaja got the contract to continue. But as this was only started on December 8 last year, there are strong suspicions that it was yet another PS Arsjes deal.
Chacoline's Castro says he has MFK, MAN, PNP, PAR and FOL behind him (that's everybody except SP) and they will investigate.
Iz Dat so?
From what we hear here, it seems it was bailiff (Specht) who culled most interesting tax info on several sinisters. Seems he even offered them to PAR Atacho, who claims he destructed the files instantly. Atacho also denies it was he who instructed Specht to collect the info.
Not to put too fine a point on it, but Atacho should have gone to the police to denounce Specht when he was approached. A politician is not a journalist who has the freedom, even the obligation to protect his sources. Which doesn't mean Shorty and his Gang have not been lying through their back teeth about all this.
Those people who are completely dependent on AOW [old age pension] were promised a raise to ANG1000/month starting this month. They will now get 25 extra for a grand total of 989 (~USD454). It didn't go through because of "administrative difficulties"—translation: it's such a &%$#£ mess that this simple measure couldn't be realized.
Oops, Wiels Forgot!
Amigoe letter-writer J. Martina notes that Wiels in his list of jobs plumb forgot to mention his own brother, who is warming a seat at Aqualectra.
FAA Degrades Hato
Yup, it's official: we now have a second-grade airport, notwithstanding mudbelly Cooper's big-mouthed assurances. Of course nobody expected else, most probably not even he. Nobody knows for how long. Naturally, Cooper boringly blames the former government. Fact remains, the FAA only degraded after mudbelly became sinister. Sure, I agree—he was congenitally sinister.
Mud Flung Back
MFK and MAN say Wiels is a'lying! No doubt; no news. And, just as I confidently predicted, they threaten him to put up or shut up or they will publish lists of PS political pastechis. We all hope they will—the sooner the better.
MFK Rozier says Wiels agreed with all those jobs when they were given away, and mentions there have been about fifty (50) of them. That's about one per week; our government has been hard at work to spend out money well. Rozier also says Wiels now admits those decisions were wrong and yet agreed at the time; so did the other two parties of course.
A bailiff working for the tax person has been relieved of his duties and forbidden access to the building: the files for several sinisters made public recently were accessed via his log-in code. Which doesn't necessarily mean he was the culprit. There are ways...
USD74 million worth of them arrived. The dreaded wind generators, ready for assembly. Reason why I mention it, Aqualectra states they have an expected life of fifteen years. Oh yeah? Wanna bet? The present ones lasted for maybe ten. If true, they will ruin my view for even longer: the last batch has not been working for over two years and is still there.
The Tax Person will not punish you if you decide to come across and correct your falsified past income declarations. But she gives fair warning that if it turns out crimes have been committed to "earn" that money, you may be prosecuted for those crimes.
W U 2
Wiels, who first said he had nothing to do with how Arsjes' wife got a pastechi [patty, pastry - unlawful favors] job with CPA, now has reversed course. Like a drunk driver, Wiels weaves his wacky way. He asks PM Shorty how nine MFK-members got their jobs, among whom:
MFK Rudolph Garmes, parliament member's brother, interim-director at Referineria di Kòrsow
MFK Gino Campbell, interim-director at Gaming Control Board
MFK Ralph Acosta, related with a minister and interim-chief at LVV [Dept. of Agriculture]
MFK Sithrey van Heydoorn, candidate at last elections, interim director at Wega di Number Kòrsow [numbers game]
MAN Urvin Macaay, director of Fondo di Garantia pa Bibienda Kòrsou [fund for living guarantee - rather ironic, that]—. Didn't work.
MAN Sandra Smith, manager at UTS. We can add all these to the blacklist, now containing 11 names. I'm sure more will follow soon.
Wiels also asks about a company "advising" RdK refinery (for ANG14K/month); and if RdK plans to appoint someone soon who'll do the same work somebody else does already (14.5K/month); if LVV uses one or more contractors related to a member of parliament and if so, which member; if a MAN member of parliament has been appointed to customs without applying and which one; and if at CTB (get this) the wife of a nephew of an MFK parliament member and who that is.
Next thing, we hope, is that Wiels gets a dose of his own medicine back in turn, so the whole sorry pie of lies may collapse.
Grupo 40 Takes Action
Grupo 40 has announced it has contracted an (unnamed) international "investigating institute" to check points like: Will our present ministers pass our local screening; has there been a normal screening; do office-bearers have international contacts that endanger national security? Delving out answers may take some time as Grupo 40 expects the government to try and frustrate the investigations.
2*MB: MudBelly MailBox
Mudbelly Cooper has announced that your mailboxes should have specific dimensions and be installed at defined heights, or you'll get NO MORE MAIL. A leaflet specifying all this has been distributed before.
Now it's a fact of life that virtually all our mailboxes and all those sold in the hardware stores, are the US standard size. So we're all doomed not to receive any more mail shortly: our mailbox should be 25cm wide, but the standard US size is only half that, 5" or 12.7cm.
PS Arsjes wife Tara Prins has joined the Gang; she's been given a job as manager at CPA for which a perfectly good manager had to be fired. But hubby claims she only told him after applying for the job and getting it. Others say she never officially applied, which is less hard to believe. Arsjes also claims Tara made a multinational with 300 employees out of an obscure company; there are precious few here that answer to that prescription—but it's common knowledge she "ran a Taco franchise into the ground."
Another fight broke out immediately in the coalition, with MFK asking their own sinister El Hakim awkward questions (are they jealous?) El Hakim wants CPA management to explain how and what. PS Wiels "leader" declared he couldn't care less how his party members
Father Prins is rumored to be the main PS financier and was instrumental in getting Arsjes, via Godett, the luxurious Selikor job he was pretty pronto kicked out of.
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