Daily Archives: 04/14/2012

Withdrawing from the War on Drugs

Withdrawing from the War on Drugs

 Stabroek staff On April 14, 2012  Editorial |

As the 35-nation Summit of the Americas gets underway in Cartagena, Colombia the United States faces a long overdue reckoning on its War on Drugs. Ever since President Nixon insisted on a instead of treating drug use as a medical, cultural and societal problem, drug trafficking has become an extraordinarily deadly and lucrative business. Yet despite huge subsidies to countries that adopted America’s heavy-handed approach, the War on Drugs has done little more than introduce catastrophic violence and widespread political corruption. The Summit’s host knows the costs better than most, having suffered more than 450,000 homicides since 1990 and with defence spending in excess of US$10 billion (5.3% of GDP, compared to the regional average of 1.7%).

The latest high-profile critic of the US approach is Otto Pérez Molina, Guatemala’s new president, who recently conceded that: “all the technology and resources and millions of dollars the United States have contributed have not managed to diminish the drug problem.” Pérez Molina is hardly a wide-eyed idealist. He served as a director of military intelligence during Guatemala’s civil war and has a raft of alleged human rights abuses hanging over his military record. This pedigree makes him a difficult critic to dismiss.  [more]

LORD KITCHENER – three music videos

LORD KITCHENER – three music videos

Aldwyn Roberts (18 April 1922 – 11 February 2000), better known by the stage name Lord Kitchener (or “Kitch”), was one of the most internationally famous calypsonians.

Kitchener’s success began after he moved to England in 1948. His fame continued throughout the 1950s, when calypso achieved international success. Later, though, he moved towards soca, a related style, and continued recording until his death. Kitchener’s compositions were enormously popular as the chosen selections for steel bands to perform at the annual National Panorama competition during Trinidad Carnival.     [  more on LORD KITCHENER]

(1) Dr. Kitch      (2) Love in the Cemetery  (3)  Sugar Bum Bum

…….  The three videos follow … click        

1. Lord Kitchener – Dr Kitch    

. Continue reading

The railway discussion of the earlier twentieth century

Hinterland Development discussions 100+ years ago…..

The railway discussion of the earlier twentieth century

Part I – By Gwyneth George

Discussions on railway development in British Guiana have always tended to focus on the East and West Coast railways. These instalments are based on the discussions of the period 1902-1917 regarding proposed schemes for railway development in British Guiana for the purpose of penetrating the hinterland.

Part II

Part I examined the proposal of 1902 made by Mr. M.L. Hill, President of RA&CS with regard to railway development for the hinterland of British Guiana. This instalment will examine some of the responses to Mr. Hill’s proposal and alternative proposals for the Central Trunk line.   [more]

Recording Guyanese political history – Nigel Westmaas

Recording Guyanese political history: Memory, `archives’ and narrative overlook

By Nigel Westmaas

This essay is concerned about the politics of memory.  As Guyana’s newest political (elections) season unfurls there will be  numerous references to events, concepts and phrases that support attendant political narratives, that is, Guyanese political history as mainly defined by the two mass political parties that have been at the helm of the country’s political life since 1953. This contemporary concentration on a convenient nomenclature of Guyana’s political history that devolves primarily on the narrative of the two dominant political forces is hardly surprising given the grasp these organisations have held on national political consciousness up to this point.

The nomenclature of  events and concepts by which the two main political parties (the PPP and PNC) define  and control the narrative of “modern” Guyanese politics include:  the “1950s” and “1960s”; “Disturbances”; Feed, Clothe and House the nation”; Enmore Martyrs”, “First Past the Post “ system; ”Sun Chapman” and the preceding Wismar incidents; “ Power-sharing”; “rigged elections”;  “Partition”; “Proportional representation”; and “paramountcy of the party”.  These favourites in the local political lexicon, as important as they are separately and collectively, sometimes uncritically legalize the philosophy and actions of one main party or the other in the representation of Guyana’s political history. This dominance leaves in its wake silences or ill attendance to other political narratives, past and present and the need for a thoughtful search for an improvement in our political narrative and culture.    [more]

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