The cloistered attempt by the leader of the Government to signal unconcern or maybe to put an end to the very public discourse on the imbroglio surrounding the high-level visit of our Venezuelan neighbours appears to have fallen short of the desired objective.

It took less than no time for those clothed in the roles of elder statesman, non-partisan commentator or of person seeking the greater good, to respond to the larger-than-life photo of a seemingly benevolent farmer reaping his crop.

The message to him, in short is — not so fast.

One would have thought the front-page exchange between the protagonists highlighted in large, bold colourful type would have satisfied most readers, whatever their respective inclinations in the matter.

It is foolhardy to think that a high-level diplomatic meeting between the two countries will resolve the “he say vs he say” matter or result in the elaboration of calculated policy positions and actions of each side on Venezuela.

For now, the positions previously espoused will continue to prevail and my guess is that both parties would like to keep it so, i.e. on the back-burner.

After all, one is burdened with the current reality of Iranian oil tankers rapidly approaching Venezuelan waters; and the other with putting the finishing touches on a national election to be called soon.

Those, without doubt, are the respective front-burner issues.

For now the political kibitzers must continue to exercise patience. Their opportunity to depose a sitting MP or even the entire Government will arise sooner than they think; not by hounding but via the ballot box.

Kenwyn H Nicholls

via e-mail


World Environment Day 2020 arrives with the news that notwithstanding the dramatic Covid-19-induced reduction in carbon emissions, the level of carbon dioxide in the air is at its highest in recorded history.

As T&T’s most prominent columnist, I often get bombarded with questions from fans wanting expert advice on complicated subject matters. For example, Kathy, who works at Scotiabank Credit Card Centre, writes: “Dear Darryn, your failure to reply leaves us with no choice but to commence legal proceedings.”

Let me restate my point of view that genuine recovery depends on a few key things: 1. Managing the Survival Phase; 2. Restoring Closed Businesses; 3. Recoup and Retrieval for Businesses as they open; 4. A National Recovery Strategy; 5. Immediate Action of Economic Restructuring, 6. Building a New Economy post Covid.

It’s been a bad week in the United States: six nights of protests, huge anger, rioting and looting in 50 cities, hundreds arrested or injured—but only six dead over the police murder of George Floyd. The number may have gone up by the time you read this, but it’s definitely not 1968 again.

“Every politician who has tasted power, and many who counted for little, has gone to war with the media. If they didn’t, that would signal that journalists were not doing their jobs, that they were too busy prostrating to power to do their duty to country.”

SO the Opposition Leader would like to know whether the Minister of National Security recused himself from the Cabinet which awarded a lucrative contract to his brother’s firm. Of course he did. Just as the Attorney General recused himself in the decision to award a rental contract to his relative.