Comings and goings…

first_img…on indentureshipNow that every immigrant group has an “Arrival Day” — save for West Indians and free Africans — can we wish the descendants of the ones who came from India a “Happy Indian Arrival Day”? Well, to be honest…NO!!Look at those who still labour on the sugar plantations: they live lives of increasingly quiet desperation, especially the ones who’ve been axed at Wales and the ones who are about to be axed at Rose Hall, Enmore and Skeldon. How different will their lives be from those of their indentured foreparents, who saw their jobs in cotton destroyed by the British in India and were forced to accept wages in Guyana that even the freed slaves refused?? That has to take the most unimaginable desperation!But it has to be even worse today. Back then, at least there were JOBS; and even though it wasn’t what the immigrants were promised when they signed up in India — they had to do all sorts of odd labour to supplement their meagre wages on the plantations: fishing in canals, tending kitchen gardens, rearing chickens, etc – today, there are no jobs in sight; and there are no fish in the canals, after the drugs runoff in the water, and there is no space in the 40×80 lots to cultivate vegetables and rear chickens. Today it is sheer starvation!!What to do?? Well, back in the day, the Massa authorised a Portuguese or Chinese rum-shop or two right opposite the pay office or on the road from the fields to the public road. These provided “solace’ to battered bodies and tortured psyches. After “independence”, the Burnham regime allowed rum shops to spring up like “jumbie umbrellas” in the sugar workers’ housing schemes. And these will once again offer “refuge”.Of course, this will lead to the same pathologies that are endemic in Indian rural communities — suicide, alcoholism, domestic violence, etc…etc. And we can expect the suicide pimps, who will rake in funding to “solve” these problems, to also crawl out of the woodwork like the termites they are. So, it’s a good thing we now have INDIAN Arrival Day…since this should hopefully force Indians to do some much-needed retrospection today.Like ask: what’s this nonsense about who destroyed the sugar industry?? Is there any doubt?? By 1968, sugar workers were receiving profit sharing — split 60% to workers and 40% to the owners. In the wake of the 1974 price spike, the PNC government scooped off more than US$400M by 1977 with their “sugar levy”. If sugar workers had received their 60%, they would have, for the first time, become millionaires!If Burnham had taken government’s 40% and modernised the factories, sugar prices afterwards would’ve matched world prices.Instead, he gave sugar workers “Guyanese hydro” – goadie!!…in healthAnd here it is, your Eyewitness thought that Government officials were only behaving like the authoritarian government they are with their control of the Chronic (like Pravda) and their love of parades!! On the latter, Royston King was miffed that the $100M May 26 Independence Bash at Stabroek Square was called off. Not to worry; the one at Jubilee Park gonna be “bigger and better”. Roy just won’t get to fill his pockets!! It’s equal opportunity time in the pilfering business!!But do you remember the guided tour the totalitarian states used to conduct for western visitors, to “prove” they were doing better than the West?? Well…it’s now reached Guyana. The “creeping” totalitarianism is speeding up!! Inspecting GPHC, members of the Parliamentary Sectoral Committee on Social Services were booted out of the Pharmacy Bond when they veered off the guided tour and insisted on checking on the biggest challenge facing the tertiary health facility – drugs!!Junior Health Minister Cummings insisted shortages of drugs don’t affect health services!!  Prayers instead??…in diplomacyThe British High Commissioner accompanied visiting Minister Baroness Anelay to meet representatives of the Government, but not to meet the Opposition’s representatives. Was it because Anil Nandlall was there, and might’ve asked him to sip some wine at the Oasis??last_img read more

A point of no return

first_imgIn 2005, the Alliance For Change (AFC) party, which was then considered ‘the third force’, promised to liberate Guyanese from the politics of divisiveness, hate, revenge, race and immaturity. It promised to work hard to usher in a period of unprecedented development should it enter Parliament or become Government by focusing on poverty reduction, the implementation of modern constitutional reforms, strengthening Government and State agencies, and paving the way for a new political culture where consensus and compromise as well as putting Guyana first would be paramount.As the years went by, the AFC and its ‘third force’ politicians, rallied against Government corruption. They accused the then ruling People’s Progressive Party (PPP) of incompetence, abuse of power, Executive lawlessness and condoning corruption. Raphael Trotman, the late Sheila Holder and Khemraj Ramjattan were seen as the new beacons of hope in the Guyanese society. Some felt they were the standard bearers as far as identifying honest politicians with a service oriented character. The AFC rose to fame and continued its political work vowing to never betray the working-class people of this country and most importantly, never to join a coalition with the PPP or the People’s National Congress (PNC). After all, the AFC resented both parties and blamed them for the current socioeconomic and political conundrum that Guyana was facing. As history recorded it, many Guyanese especially those of mixed descent bought the message of the AFC and gave them the votes they needed to taste parliamentary power. This happened despite boisterous warnings from the PPP that the AFC could not be trusted because those at its helm where deflectors from the major parties who were bitter, untrustworthy, revengeful and thirsty for Executive power.Sheila Holder died before the AFC underwent a most shameful transformation under the leaderships of Trotman and Ramjattan. When she departed this world, the AFC was still a party that had the potential to force the other two main political relics into oblivion because of the freshness of the AFC’s untested approach mixed with its promise to shake up the Government bureaucracy and engineer real change. Now the party has become one of the biggest disappointments in Guyana’s political history thereby beating the United Force, the Working People’s Alliance and GAP/ROAR from the top slots after they too failed to keep their momentum and deliver the kind of change this country needs to progress. The post 2011-AFC is no longer the ferocious tiger guarding the public’s interest and purse. Its teeth have been extracted and it is now enjoying the milk and honey flowing from the covert operations of the David Granger Administration which rose to power as a result of a cosmetic surgery performed on the PNC. That party used every trick in the book to regain the Executive power it lost in 1992 and its last ditch attempt to agree to everything and offer anything that would appeal to the badly bruised and inactive smaller parties in Guyana, inclusive of the Justice for All outfit and WPA, in order to form the A Partnership for National Unity.Instead of declining APNU’s offer to join the coalition which had the PNC as its senior partner, those at the helm of the AFC became discontent with their lot. They wanted to taste Executive power. They wanted to use that power to wreak havoc on Bharrat Jagdeo and the PPP. After all, there was no Sheila Holder to stop them and no other mature political voice within the AFC to challenge their desire. And least we forget, Moses Nagamootoo entered the pageant after failing in his last-ditch attempt to wrestle the presidential candidacy position from other senior comrades in the PPP party. He later succeeded in wrestling power away from more suitable persons in the AFC like Cathy Hughes, Raphael Trotman and Dr Rupert Roopnaraine to become the coalition’s Prime Ministerial Candidate in the 2015 General and Regional Elections. The decision was now obvious as both the AFC and PNC were on the same wave length. They now shared a common interest and it wasn’t about delivering meaningful change to the masses but rather securing their individual political futures.Nagamootoo is now Guyana’s first Prime Minister without a serious portfolio. Led by the Prime Minister and Vice President Khemraj Ramjattan, the top brass of the AFC appears set for life. Many splurge and spend taxpayers’ monies on fancy banquets, trips abroad, upgrading their homes and offices with modern and luxurious furnishing, and high-end vehicles. The AFC is now a component of the PNC. It is justifying and shamelessly defending every single Executive abuse by the Government in which it serves. It is condoning corruption and encouraging political witch-hunting. The AFC is now supportive of constitutional violations. For the first time in 10 years, its leaders now are at the lowest point of their political careers because they lack the moral authority and integrity to lecture the PPP or any other important stakeholder on matters pertaining to transparency, accountability and good governance. They are now part of the Government machinery that could soon commit greater atrocities than the PPP ever did.While it is clear that the top AFC leaders have already been bought for their 30 shillings of sliver, the party’s machinery is in chaos and decline. It is virtually non-existent and nonfunctional. The party groups do not meet regularly. They get no guidance from their elected representatives and there are instances of massive financial corruption and mismanagement. There is also widespread concern that the elections to key offices are also staged to keep the existing status quo. The AFC appears happy with this coalition arrangement but 2020 will prove how happy its supporters and financiers are.Even if no one will admit it, the AFC is at a point of no return. Its part of the annals of history that will never be forgotten because it’s a failed third force and a failed attempt at conciliatory politics. It did not have the political patience or discipline to break the trend of oppressive politics.last_img read more

‘Superbad’ draws more than teens to open on top

first_img“Superbad” was super good at the box office, proving that a no-name cast could hold its own amid A-list summer blockbusters. The teen comedy from Sony, the misadventures of two high school buddies trying to score booze, took in $31.2 million to debut as the weekend’s No. 1 movie, according to studio estimates Sunday. “Superbad” knocked off the previous weekend’s top flick, New Line’s “Rush Hour 3,” which slipped to second place with $21.8 million, raising its total to $88.2 million. The Warner Bros. sci-fi tale “The Invasion,” starring Nicole Kidman and Daniel Craig in an update of “Invasion of the Body Snatchers,” opened a weak No. 5 with $6 million. “Superbad” maintains the pattern of producer Judd Apatow’s earlier hits, “Knocked Up” and “The 40-Year-Old Virgin,” which he directed. Apatow and his collaborators, including “Knocked Up” star and “Superbad” co-writer and co-star Seth Rogen, have a knack for packaging crude, R-rated humor with clever, authentic dialogue far smarter than what’s normally seen in summer comedies. Shot on a modest $20 million budget, “Superbad” had a slightly better debut than “Knocked Up,” which opened in June with $30.7 million and went on to become a $100 million hit. “I think a genuinely funny movie always has a shot at doing well, because so few movies are really funny,” Apatow told The Associated Press as he headed to the “Knocked Up” premiere Sunday at the Edinburgh International Film Festival in Scotland. “Superbad,” co-written by Rogen and his high school best friend Evan Goldberg, stars Jonah Hill and Michael Cera as pals on a quest for alcohol to impress the foxy host of a party. Rogen co-stars as an inept cop who ends up carousing with the teens, while Christopher Mintz-Plasse proves a scene-stealer as Hill and Cera’s super-geeky friend. Though centering on high schoolers, “Superbad” drew in older crowds, with 40 percent of the audience over 30, said Rory Bruer, head of distribution for Sony. “The Apatow comedy machine itself is a brand now, and it’s a brand that has created movies that appeal to older audiences who now follow whatever he does, even in the teen genre, which is very unusual,” said Paul Dergarabedian, president of box-office tracker Media By Numbers. TOP 10 MOVIES Estimated ticket sales for Friday through Sunday at U.S. and Canadian theaters, according to Exhibitor Relations Co. Inc. Final figures will be released today. 1. “Superbad,” $31.2 million. 2. “Rush Hour 3,” $21.8 million. 3. “The Bourne Ultimatum,” $19 million. 4. “The Simpsons Movie,” $6.7 million. 5. “The Invasion,” $6 million. 6. “Stardust,” $5.2 million. 7. “Hairspray,” $4.3 million. 8. “Underdog,” $3.6 million. 9. “Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix,” $3.54 million. 10. “I Now Pronounce You Chuck and Larry,” $3.5 million.160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set!last_img read more

Doctors urge early checks for autism

first_imgThe academy’s renewed effort reflects growing awareness since its first autism guidelines in 2001. A 2006 policy statement urged autism screening for all children at their regular doctor visits at age 18 months and 24 months. The authors caution that not all children who display a few of these symptoms are autistic and they said parents shouldn’t overreact to quirky behavior. Just because a child likes to line up toy cars or has temper tantrums “doesn’t mean you need to have concern, if they’re also interacting socially and also pretending with toys and communicating well,” said co-author Dr. Scott Myers, a neurodevelopmental pediatrician in Danville, Pa. “With awareness comes concern when there doesn’t always need to be,” he said. “These resources will help educate the reader as to which things you really need to be concerned about.” Another educational tool, a Web site that debuted in mid-October, offers dozens of video clips of autistic kids contrasted with unaffected children’s behavior. That Web site – – is sponsored by two nonprofit advocacy groups: Autism Speaks and First Signs. They hope the site will promote early diagnosis and treatment to help children with autism lead more normal lives. 160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set! AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MOREGame Center: Chargers at Kansas City Chiefs, Sunday, 10 a.m.The advice is meant to help both parents and doctors spot autism sooner. There is no cure for the disorder, but experts say that early therapy can lessen its severity. Symptoms to watch for and the call for early screening come in two new reports. They are being released by the American Academy of Pediatrics today at its annual meeting in San Francisco and will appear in the November issue of the journal Pediatrics and on the group’s Web site – The reports list numerous warning signs, such as a 4-month-old not smiling at the sound of mom or dad’s voice, or the loss of language or social skills at any age. Experts say one in 150 U.S. children have the troubling developmental disorder. “Parents come into your office now saying `I’m worried about autism.’ Ten years ago, they didn’t know what it was,” said Dr. Chris Johnson of the University of Texas Health Science Center in San Antonio. She co-authored the reports. HEALTH: Reports by pediatricians group also cite signs that may be indicators of the incurable disorder. By Lindsey Tanner THE ASSOCIATED PRESS CHICAGO – The country’s leading pediatricians group is making its strongest push yet to have all children screened for autism twice by age 2, warning of symptoms such as babies who don’t babble at 9 months and 1-year-olds who don’t point to toys. last_img

CONFIRMED! Dortmund star becomes Pep Guardiola’s first Manchester City signing

first_img Ilkay Gundogan Manchester City have completed the signing of Ilkay Gundogan from Borussia Dortmund.The Germany international has penned a four-year contract after Dortmund accepted an offer of around £20m from the Premier League club.Gundogan, 25, is the first arrival of the Pep Guardiola era.“I’m thrilled to have signed for Manchester City,” he told the club’s official website.“When I learned of City’s interest my heart was set on coming here and things have moved very quickly.“I have loved my time with Borussia Dortmund and I would like to thank the club and the supporters for the five very happy years I spent there.“They gave me a platform to play on and I became a better player because of the belief, patience and trust they showed in me.“Now I have a new challenge and that is to achieve great things with City. The opportunity to work with a coach like Pep Guardiola is something I am really looking forward to and I am flattered to be the first signing the club has made this summer.“I can promise the City fans I will give everything to help us win titles both in England and the Champions League. These are exciting times.“I have my best years ahead of me and I think we can achieve great things together. I can’t wait to begin this new chapter in my career.”City have been tracking the playmaker for some time and pushed through the deal despite seeing him suffer a serious knee injury.Gundogan underwent surgery earlier this month after discolating a knee cap and is expected to be out of action for around four months.He spent five years at Dortmund, winning the Bundesliga once, three German Cups, and reaching the final of the Champions League during his time at the Westfalenstadion.Dortmund were keen to tie down Gundogan to a new long-term deal but he set his heart set on a switch to link up with former Bayern Munich boss Guardiola.Having been one of the Bundesliga’s most outstanding performers in recent years, Gundogan will now look to make a major impact in the Premier League, where he will come up against his old Dortmund boss Jurgen Klopp, who is now in charge of City’s rivals Liverpool. 1last_img read more

Video game gurus fired up for expo

first_imgLast year, games hung in the shadow of the new consoles, which attracted more ogling eyes than the attractive women who staff the booths. But this year, it’s all about who’s loudest, flashiest, fastest and coolest on the screen. Ted Price, founder of the Burbank-based Insomniac Games, hopes to earn at least some of those accolades. His team’s been in high gear to produce “Resistance: Fall of Man” for the PlayStation 3, a shoot-’em-up he calls brutal, but can’t say much else about until it makes its official debut today. The new capabilities the next-gen consoles afford, Price said, will be a landmark moment for the business. “This is the biggest technological leap we’ve seen in this industry so far,” he said. “It’s good for us since there’s a lot of excitement around PS3. We’re an early title on the platform, so our game gets a lot of attention. For us, it’s an opportunity to remain on the cutting edge in terms of the technology.” (818) 713-3738160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set! AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MOREBasketball roundup: Sierra Canyon, Birmingham set to face off in tournament quarterfinals“Three words: total sensory overload,” said Brian Farrell, president, chairman and chief executive officer of Agoura Hills-based THQ Inc. “It’s visual, it’s loud, it’s tiring. It’s an assault on the senses.” His company has a full line of wares, from a kid/teen-aimed offering based on the popular Bratz dolls for a variety of platforms to more violent fare such as “Saints Row” and “The Outfit,” both for the XBox 360. This will be the first year publishers and developers have had a good amount of time to work out titles for the so-called “next gen” consoles. With the 360 out since December and the Sony PlayStation 3 and the Nintendo Wii hotly anticipated in coming months, developers will be dragging out their high-definition graphics, Internet interface and just about every other trick they can pull out of the new machines’ processors. “We’re going to work the platforms as hard as possible so we can really give the consumers something new,” said Graham Hopper, senior vice president and general manager of Glendale-based Buena Vista Games. “The hardware’s great and all, but it’s no fun unless you’ve got something to play on it.” The Disney division will have “Turok,” a first-person-shooter game detailing the exploits of a space commando on a planet gone mad, for the 360, plus several titles for the new Nintendo system. For PC users looking for somewhat un-PC fare, Disney will also debut “Desperate Housewives: The Game,” for a little simulated back-stabbing and scandal-mongering. The animated guns have been loaded, the speakers have been cranked and the costumed characters are ready to go – it’s time to sit down for some serious business. Hordes of game fiends will make their annual pilgrimage to the Electronic Entertainment Expo today at the Los Angeles Convention Center. The annual blowout, cloaked in raging music and flashing lights, gives the multi-billion-dollar video game business a chance to show off its wares for the first time to the world during a three-day, industry-only trade show. After last year’s unveiling of high-tech systems from Microsoft, Sony and Nintendo, the game world is drooling over a slew of revved-up titles developers have cooked up to take advantage of the new gadgets. The event has become one of the most important times for developers and publishers to shape their business for the year, though you wouldn’t know it from the setting. Walking through the doors feels more like an arcade – or several dozen, packed into one room – than a boardroom. last_img read more

Jordan Henderson believes Liverpool deserve to be back in the Champions League

first_img1 The Reds reached the group stages of European football’s premier club competition Captain Jordan Henderson said Liverpool deserve to be playing Champions League football after the club booked their place in this season’s competition.The Reds reached the group stages of European football’s premier club competition with a 6-3 aggregate victory over Hoffenheim.Two goals from Emre Can and further strikes from Mohamed Salah and Roberto Firmino helped the Reds to a 4-2 win at Anfield in the second leg of the play-off qualifier.And afterwards Henderson said: “It was a brilliant night.“We set the tempo and scored some good goals early on. We still can improve on the goals we conceded but overall we’re delighted to be back in the Champions League, where Liverpool belong.“We need to make sure we do ourselves justice. They are big nights for everyone and I’m delighted for the fans and the lads.”The draw for the group stages takes place on Thursday and the Wearsider added on BT Sport: “We’ve proved we can play against big teams and do well. We’ll play whoever we get.”Liverpool boss Jurgen Klopp added: “It feels absolutely amazing.“My team played a perfect first half an hour…but Hoffenheim never gave up. 3-0 is usually a real knock but they were here to enjoy the game.“You cannot imagine how much intense pressure there was on the boys before this game. We tried to put it away of course and the boys did outstandingly good.“We should be there (in the Champions League) and we are really excited about who we get. We’re really looking forward to the draw tomorrow.“But I’ve told the boys ‘have a party’. For sure that’s what we should do, really enjoy tonight at home, the performance of today.“I love the attitude of this team because they really fight.”last_img read more

Andy Murray reaches semi-finals at Rio Olympic Games

first_imgThe final set was a much tighter affair, with Johnson breaking to go 4-3 ahead and leave himself two service games from victory. Murray immediately responded with a break of his own, however, taking the final set into a tie-break. The Scot eventually prevailed in the decider to win 6-0, 4-6, 7-6 (7-2) to set up a semi-final clash with Japan’s Kei Nishikori or Frenchman Gael Monfils. Defending champion Andy Murray has reached the semi-finals of the men’s singles at the Rio Olympics with a three-set victory over Steve Johnson. The British No 1 avoided a shock defeat after battling back from a break down in the final set to clinch the match in a deciding tie-break. American Johnson, who has only defeated a top ten player once in his career, came close to eclipsing his victory over Richard Gasquet at Queen’s Club in the summer. World No 2 Murray had dominated the early proceedings and clinched the first set 6-0 but Johnson, ranked No 22, fought back to take the second. last_img read more

Georgia ~ Sales and Use Tax: Enterprise Zones for Qualified Underdeveloped Urban Redevelopment Areas Created

first_imgCCH Tax Day ReportLegislation has been enacted that creates a new type of sales and use tax enterprise zone in Georgia. The enterprise zone will be permitted in an urban redevelopment area that has been chronically underdeveloped for 20 years or more and contains a redevelopment project having a minimum $400 million projected capital investment. Projects related to casino gambling do not qualify. The enterprise zones will remain in existence for 30 years or until the redevelopment project is complete and any revenue bonds issued are retired, whichever first occurs.H.B. 342, Laws 2017, July 1, 2017last_img read more