Category: Uncategorized

Employers as Candidates

Dear Editor:

Allow me to respond to the concerns that some may have about employers offering themselves to the public as candidates for the next general elections.  Political operatives have dismissed the idea as a fatal flaw and they do not expect us to garner much support.  However, employers, employees, the unemployed and the unemployable all have a right to offer themselves for consideration.  Whether they are chosen or not is exclusively and entirely up to the voters to decide.

It is important to understand that employers include: engineers (like myself), doctors, lawyers, contractors, accountants, merchants, hair dressers, landscapers, barbers, dentists, musicians, accountants, dramatists, economists, and every other professional and non-professional who took the risks of starting their own business and employing others.

To appreciate the special relevant skills that employers have, it is important to be reminded that Caribbean countries are in serious economic trouble because of popular, but unworkable ideas that have sabotaged their economies.  Given the real and dire consequences of testing unworkable ideas on the national economy, it would appear that main qualification needed to manage a national economy is to understand, by experience, how an economy works.

Starting and growing a business appears to be the ideal training ground for managing a national economy. This is because employers are ably positioned to test their ideas in the market place, and learn, by trial and error, what works under specific conditions, and what does not work under any conditions in the Barbados, Caribbean and international regulatory environments.

Perhaps a multiple-choice analogy may suffice. Who do you want to drive a bus full of people (the national economy)?

A – A person who has experience walking for 10 years (the youth/senior students)?

B – A person who has ridden a bicycle for 10 years (experienced employees)?

C – A person who has driven a car for 10 years (experienced employers)?

D – A person who has been chauffeured in a bus for 10 years (experienced politicians)?

E – A person who has read about how a bus is manufactured (academics)?

If you selected the person who drove a car, then well done; there is hope for Barbados. If the majority choose any of the others in the next general elections, then we should all prepare to suck the proverbial salt.

Response to Dr Tennyson Joseph

Dear Editor:

Allow me to respond to Dr Tennyson Joseph’s concerns about employers as political candidates.  Dr Joseph used the classic debating tactic of redefining a critical concept to one that is popularly offensive, ascribing the offensive concept to his respondent, and then vehemently criticizing the offensive concept to the expected delight of the public.  I too was cheering him on as he railed against his defined “employer class”, but the public deserves to know that he was simply arguing with himself, much like Hartley Henry.

There have always been irresponsible employers.  Caribbean history is replete with the accounts of trade unionists who challenged the oppressive employers, often at great personal sacrifice.  Those giants of a past generation are publically acknowledged as national heroes and Caribbean icons.

Many households are familiar with the almost daily complaints of their family-members about their greedy, irresponsible, ignorant, cheap, wasteful, incompetent, but powerful employers, who may have laid them off in order to maintain profit levels.

Irresponsible employers may no longer physically oppress persons directly.  Rather, they use the political system to displace their competitors.  This may be in the form of contributions to a political party in order to gain lobbying influence.  For example, they may lobby to make health and occupational standards that they have already achieved, mandatory, in order to increase the product development costs of their smaller competitors.  The government regulators may then be manipulated into believing that they are enforcing a public good, when they are actually forcing the smaller competitors to bankruptcy for the sole benefit of the irresponsible employer.  Removing smaller competitors normally results in higher priced products for public consumption.

Solutions Barbados does not want irresponsible employers as candidates.  Responsible employers care for the welfare of their employees, and readily accept reduced profits in order to maintain their employees.  Dr Joseph seems to believe that such employers are mythical.  I can guarantee him that they are not, and we plan to present 30 such employers as candidates for the public to consider.

Squandering the Deficit

Those whom we have entrusted to manage our national economy have revealed their estimates of annual revenues and expenses.  They plan to spend approximately $1.6B more than what they expect to receive.  This deficit can represent a strategic $1.6B investment.  However, a review of the estimates shows that only a fraction of the excess spending can be considered an investment.  Solutions Barbados’ overarching concern is that we are not getting much value for what we are paying for, resulting in increased national debt.  Three spending examples from the estimates should suffice.

We are gravely concerned about the money estimated to be invested in building projects.  This would normally be a safe investment, but not when managed by a Government that has chosen not to protect the investment value of our nation’s infrastructure.  It can be protected by simply enforcing building standards.  The result is that we are fortunate if government funded buildings remain occupied for more than 30 years.  The Caribbean building standard is that buildings should remain operational for at least 50 years.

The planned expenditure on our failing education system is $485M.  The vast majority of our secondary school students graduate with no marketable skills and no competitive certificates.  After investing so much, we should not be getting so little in return.  The solution is obvious – simply change the secondary school curriculum to allow all students to graduate with at least one marketable skill that will allow them to generate revenue.

The $333M estimated to be spent on our health system is at risk of being mismanaged.  The risk can be substantially reduced if our health system was properly managed.  The ISO 9001 quality management system has been available to the Government for over 15 years.  However, the Government has chosen not to follow this international management standard, resulting in unnecessary wastage.

These three examples describe how unlikely it is for us to get a positive return on any deficit spending.  It should be clearly understood that both BLP and DLP administrations have squandered our deficit investments.  Given their collective past performance, we should continue to expect high-maintenance infrastructure, and less-effective and poorly managed public services.  Solutions Barbados believes that our elected representatives are sincerely doing the best that they are capable of.  However, their best is very far below what Barbados needs at this time.

Free Public Lecture and Discussion

You are invited to a free Public Presentation:

– SOLUTIONS BARBADOS –

 The Case (Justification) for a Third Political Party.

Date: Thursday 7th April 2016

Time:  6:00 pm

Venue: Combermere School Hall

Presenter:

Grenville W Phillips II

BSc, BEng, MASc, MURP, CEng, FIStructE, FCIHT, MAPM, MCSCE, MBAPE

All are welcome to an entertaining and thought provoking presentation.

Host: Walbrent College

Wanted

WANTED

Accomplished men and women of demonstrated integrity and leadership, who love Barbados, treasure their reputations, and are willing to present themselves as candidates in the next general election in order to give Barbadians a competent alternative.  Prospective candidates must not view politics as a career, but as a brief time of exemplary national service.

Contact Grenville Phillips II at: NextParty246@gmail.com

Before you contact us, please do the following.

  1. Read our Solutions on the Solutions page.
  2. Read Harold Hoyte’s book: “Eyewitness to Order and Disorder”.
  3. Talk to your family and put your house in order.