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Is Montserrat Standing at Brink of being a Failed State?

Is Montserrat Standing at Brink of being a Failed State?

By Claude Gerald

Montserrat, good old mother of generations is in a state of nothingness. Anxious it wails for concerted attention.

We may be standing at the brink of a failed state. The economic realities are so weak and the politics is hardly describable. Being headless in governmental affairs is the new norm. The electoral mechanism is the same old construct, implemented in a volcanic emergency without any serious review since, although it is likely the least corruptible option available in our context.

Hitherto unknowns who never dared to brave an electoral contest have been facilitated by this ‘All Nine’ mantra. It has given life and facilitation to virtual undesirables to our eternal detriment. The opportunists arrive camouflaged, traversing the divide to being designated Honourable, less its meaning.

Thus our current paradigm places emphasis on the ‘what’ of a person totally oblivious to the all important ‘who’, which is all about character, substance and what is integral. It is this latter attribute that we fail consistently to promote and value as we head headlong along the 20/20 path of quick gains, instant pleasure, and not desirous of an exposure that tests our ambitions and fashions personal growth and development, in the Test Match game of life itself.

Our philosophies on life mirror wretched models of the past and the present. Our leaders spewed and fed the masses examples of the rape and plunder of our resources, dividing and ruling, in their personal interests, and victimizing non-followers along the way.

Montserrat and its valued place in the Universe are being miniaturized.

Starting in 1978, when we came under an indifferent political regime that emphasized the petty and the mundane, thus devoid of basic elements of nation building;  offspring of that mindset borrowed, embraced and became disciples, to further spread bile as the standard; a generation was intoxicated and innocent newborns were baptized by this greedy thinking.

The volcanic experiences gave excuses for disordered minds to flourish. An example is the nature and positioning of our housing stock that once was enviable. The Beachettes areas – Old Town, Olveston and Woodlands – bore the finest homes with the View Point hotel at its hub and attracted the wealthy and the well connected, to relish the best of Nature and man’s creativity. Covenants cushioned and legalized this elegance and gave confidence to investors and visitors.

A rare night out mingling with a conservative crowd in the heart of Old Town lately was a horror hard to overcome: an ugly concrete roof dwelling surrounded by two other inappropriate buildings, sat occupying the most perfect view in the Mecca of fine homes. It is a sign of decadence and social apathy that rolls on mindlessly. Like the remnants of Gun Hill and Piper’s Pond, one is forced to ‘eyes right’ so as not to indulge in the eyesore, created by residents seemingly of an unconventional subculture that is precedent setting. How such trash housing could enter the portals of Old Town is beyond imagination?

Realtors present seemed unfazed as were guests of considerable social standing.  Blaming the Physical Planning Unit as one person did is initially reasonable but one expected some outrage from folks with vested interest who knew of the aberration. Even so the once viable Property Owners’ Association is dead.

But the buck stops with the continued shameful performance of the Planning Development Authority (PDA), obligated to defend the wholesomeness of Montserrat. Drawn from civic and public sectors, it is driven by the Physical Planning Head, Clement Jerome Meade, and a two year old appointee to the job, though seasoned. Certified to the tee, the past administration long questioned his qualification for the post, arguing that a leadership vacuum was present.

The new administration blessed his ascension but Meade, already in official legal scrapes with others pending, cannot rest on his laurels and expect things to just happen. He has to prove his growing list of detractors wrong as he has a responsibility for rendering design and beauty to all areas of Montserrat. Many remember the tumbled fatal Babel Tower, steel-less, built by Ras Jackie in Friths that Physical Planning lapsed on.

And even more reprehensible from a health standpoint are the erection of  gigantic Digicel Towers that dot the landscape in the heart of neighbourhoods in Baker Hill and Judy Piece.

Mr. Jerome Meade has taken to radio to assure residents that all is safe in light of written protests. But how safe is what he is transmitting to us?  Not only are they frighteningly ugly, they are believed to pose real dangers to people’s lives. Are residents being prepared to be experimental tools and guinea pigs?

The broader issue is the health of the nation. There have been numerous studies evidencing that emissions from radiofrequency (RF) radiation are harmful. Who amongst us is willing to take the chance with a 24/7 exposure? We need to be aware of the risks when these devices are embedded in residential areas.

Rather than glibly allow the planting of antennas everywhere, the Physical Planning Unit must wrestle with the conflicts and quell the fears that all is indeed well with these electro-magnetic super structures in our lives.

It is a worthy start Mr. Meade.

Claude Gerald is a social commentator. Find him at ceegee15@hotmail.com

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A Moment with the Registrar of Lands

By Claude Gerald

Montserrat, good old mother of generations is in a state of nothingness. Anxious it wails for concerted attention.

We may be standing at the brink of a failed state. The economic realities are so weak and the politics is hardly describable. Being headless in governmental affairs is the new norm. The electoral mechanism is the same old construct, implemented in a volcanic emergency without any serious review since, although it is likely the least corruptible option available in our context.

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Hitherto unknowns who never dared to brave an electoral contest have been facilitated by this ‘All Nine’ mantra. It has given life and facilitation to virtual undesirables to our eternal detriment. The opportunists arrive camouflaged, traversing the divide to being designated Honourable, less its meaning.

Thus our current paradigm places emphasis on the ‘what’ of a person totally oblivious to the all important ‘who’, which is all about character, substance and what is integral. It is this latter attribute that we fail consistently to promote and value as we head headlong along the 20/20 path of quick gains, instant pleasure, and not desirous of an exposure that tests our ambitions and fashions personal growth and development, in the Test Match game of life itself.

Our philosophies on life mirror wretched models of the past and the present. Our leaders spewed and fed the masses examples of the rape and plunder of our resources, dividing and ruling, in their personal interests, and victimizing non-followers along the way.

Montserrat and its valued place in the Universe are being miniaturized.

Starting in 1978, when we came under an indifferent political regime that emphasized the petty and the mundane, thus devoid of basic elements of nation building;  offspring of that mindset borrowed, embraced and became disciples, to further spread bile as the standard; a generation was intoxicated and innocent newborns were baptized by this greedy thinking.

The volcanic experiences gave excuses for disordered minds to flourish. An example is the nature and positioning of our housing stock that once was enviable. The Beachettes areas – Old Town, Olveston and Woodlands – bore the finest homes with the View Point hotel at its hub and attracted the wealthy and the well connected, to relish the best of Nature and man’s creativity. Covenants cushioned and legalized this elegance and gave confidence to investors and visitors.

A rare night out mingling with a conservative crowd in the heart of Old Town lately was a horror hard to overcome: an ugly concrete roof dwelling surrounded by two other inappropriate buildings, sat occupying the most perfect view in the Mecca of fine homes. It is a sign of decadence and social apathy that rolls on mindlessly. Like the remnants of Gun Hill and Piper’s Pond, one is forced to ‘eyes right’ so as not to indulge in the eyesore, created by residents seemingly of an unconventional subculture that is precedent setting. How such trash housing could enter the portals of Old Town is beyond imagination?

Realtors present seemed unfazed as were guests of considerable social standing.  Blaming the Physical Planning Unit as one person did is initially reasonable but one expected some outrage from folks with vested interest who knew of the aberration. Even so the once viable Property Owners’ Association is dead.

But the buck stops with the continued shameful performance of the Planning Development Authority (PDA), obligated to defend the wholesomeness of Montserrat. Drawn from civic and public sectors, it is driven by the Physical Planning Head, Clement Jerome Meade, and a two year old appointee to the job, though seasoned. Certified to the tee, the past administration long questioned his qualification for the post, arguing that a leadership vacuum was present.

The new administration blessed his ascension but Meade, already in official legal scrapes with others pending, cannot rest on his laurels and expect things to just happen. He has to prove his growing list of detractors wrong as he has a responsibility for rendering design and beauty to all areas of Montserrat. Many remember the tumbled fatal Babel Tower, steel-less, built by Ras Jackie in Friths that Physical Planning lapsed on.

And even more reprehensible from a health standpoint are the erection of  gigantic Digicel Towers that dot the landscape in the heart of neighbourhoods in Baker Hill and Judy Piece.

Mr. Jerome Meade has taken to radio to assure residents that all is safe in light of written protests. But how safe is what he is transmitting to us?  Not only are they frighteningly ugly, they are believed to pose real dangers to people’s lives. Are residents being prepared to be experimental tools and guinea pigs?

The broader issue is the health of the nation. There have been numerous studies evidencing that emissions from radiofrequency (RF) radiation are harmful. Who amongst us is willing to take the chance with a 24/7 exposure? We need to be aware of the risks when these devices are embedded in residential areas.

Rather than glibly allow the planting of antennas everywhere, the Physical Planning Unit must wrestle with the conflicts and quell the fears that all is indeed well with these electro-magnetic super structures in our lives.

It is a worthy start Mr. Meade.

Claude Gerald is a social commentator. Find him at ceegee15@hotmail.com