I am talking about potential “nine-day wonders,” a special feature of public life in Jamaica. A dramatic story hits the news; people throw up their hands in alarm; they call the radio talk shows, their voices shrill with concern; they write angry letters to the newspapers; and the opinion-makers begin to register the story on their radar and write their opinions. By the time our learned columnists and editors have done that, the story is already half-way through the door, bumping into another drama just coming in to replace it. Or it simply gets submerged in the mundane, washed away in the trivia.
Average life: approximately nine days.
A couple of stories surfaced virtually at the same time on Thursday. It was not a good day; the kind of day when your heart sinks just a little – or, when, in Jamaican social media lingo, you may write “kmt.” These stories have not, as yet, been examined deeply enough by the media in my view, and there is still much more to be said – particularly in the print media. There were several newspaper editorials lat week about the wonderful relationship between Jamaica and China over the past forty years; why so many, I don’t know. But we want more details on these two stories to emerge, this week. Please.
Let’s deal with the two wonders first, before we talk about a couple of pachyderms – you know, the ones in the living room that take up so much space?
The two fine elephants in the room: Economy (left) and Crime (right)
Firstly, it emerged on Wednesday evening that in July our government spent a large sum of money on sixteen SUVs (Toyota Prados, to be precise) for the use of its ministers while they are serving the people. The sum of money quoted was around sixty-two Jamaican Dollars. Most of these vehicles were close to the US$30,000 upper limit (that’s quite an upper limit, isn’t it!)
This news followed hot on the heels of the Planning Institute of Jamaica’s revelation that Jamaica has just endured its third consecutive quarter of negative growth. This means that the Jamaican economy is officially in recession. (Hello! One of the elephants is waving its trunk, reminding us of its presence). The reaction from the Jamaican public was a combination of bitterness, cynicism, anger and weary shakes of the head. The Minister of Information Sandrea Falconer tried to explain the reasoning behind the purchase of these lovely vehicles; apparently most of those in the outgoing administration bought their vehicles before they left. The ministers needed to be comfortable, Minister Falconer explained in her “I am being very patient” voice to journalists at the post-Cabinet press briefing; they also needed to negotiate the rough rural roads that they have to travel. Minister Falconer went on to inform us, the struggling taxpayers, that our political leaders make great sacrifices. Life is not as easy for them as a politician as it was before they entered the public service, she informs us. I suppose that is why they fight so hard, using whatever means they have at their disposal, for political power – because they all want to make those sacrifices, just for us? Because elections are nothing if not very, very hard-fought. Well.
Minister of Information Sandrea Falconer (Photo: Jamaica Gleaner)
I am afraid that one stuck in my craw. (What is a craw exactly? But you know what I mean). I don’t think the words “Jamaican politician” and “sacrifice” can really be mentioned in the same breath.
Social activist and founder of the New National Coalition Betty Ann Blaine waxed sarcastic. “[Finance Minister] Peter Phillips told us the shop is empty,” she reminded us. And what of the ordinary Jamaicans who have to drive on these rough rural roads every day. (Can they have Prados, too?) Minister Phillips himself drives the latest model Audi, by the way.
The Minister of Finance has been driving this lovely car since earlier this year.
The Toyota Prado 2012 in all its glory.
The last straw for me was a speech made by Prime Minister Portia Simpson Miller immediately after the Prado disclosure. In a “what is all the fuss about” tone, she told a Social Development Commission meeting that she doesn’t “travel econ” on her personal business when she travels abroad (and of course, not on taxpayers’ business, either); and that ministers should not be expected to do so. She then rambled on about the Secret Service (?!) and how the fact that she does not live at the Prime Minister’s official residence (Vale Royal) saves the country money (does it?). I held my head in my hands. She is just showing off about the air travel, my husband suggested. I despair – along with many other Jamaicans who feel hurt and offended by the somewhat defiant and “there’s nothing wrong with it, this is perfectly justified” response of the government. Meanwhile, middle class Jamaicans (almost a dying breed) struggle to pay their supermarket and utility bills (as the Jamaican dollar is slipping, so all our everyday costs go up) and dread another increase in petroleum prices (and most of us don’t have the ministers’ gas-guzzlers, air conditioning up high). And for the many Jamaicans living close to poverty – I don’t, simply don’t, understand how they manage. They must be going hungry, and they must be desperate. But then, as one of my fellow bloggers comments below, “Portia loves the poor.”
There was a rash of memes on social media after this news broke. And by the way, if our leaders paid more attention to what is being said in the social media on such matters, they would have a major reality check. Not saying they would change their ways – but it might surprise them. The backlash is considerable.
The wonders of first class airline travel – of course, our government ministers fully deserve it… “They must be comfortable”….
On the matter of the first class travel, I can tell you an experience I had a few years ago: I was attending a conference in another Caribbean country, and was on the same plane going home as a number of Caribbean government ministers as well as their U.S. equivalent (a member of the U.S. cabinet). All the Caribbean ministers settled down in first class, laughing, slapping each other’s backs, enjoying nice food and drink, and socializing all the way. Their American counterpart sat in a bulkhead seat on economy class, so he had more space, quietly got out his laptop and papers, and worked for the entire journey in silence. I merely observed, and took note.
The second piece of news on Thursday was a tragic story. A sixteen-year-old girl who was being held in an adult prison, the Horizon Remand Centre in Kingston, committed suicide. Young Vanessa Wint was one of twenty girls housed in the adult prison; this is against Jamaican law and I believe international human rights norms. A security post to watch the cells is reportedly right opposite what was Vanessa’s cell, yet no one noticed anything; an investigation is under way. Her family is deeply traumatized and has hired a lawyer; the girl’s uncle has vowed to get to the bottom of the story. Meanwhile, as human rights lobby group Jamaicans for Justice has pointed out, all the government agencies responsible for children in the care of the State are to blame. This includes the Minister of Youth Lisa Hanna, the melodious-voiced former beauty queen – who has not had the decency to issue a statement of condolence to the family (I have not heard one anyway). Ms. Hanna is, in fact, the minister responsible. JFJ has been accused of “pointing fingers” - but it is a simple fact that, as so often happens, the government is breaking its own laws (the much-heralded Child Care and Protection Act). The child was behind bars for “uncontrollable behavior,” as well as possession of an offensive weapon – although her family denies any knowledge of the latter – but had not been charged. As she is a ward of the state, the State is responsible for her.
Our beautiful Minister responsible for youth, Ms. Lisa Hanna, M.P. Has she issued a statement of condolence or any comment on the death of a teenage girl in the care of her Ministry?
This is a heart-breaking story, and there will be more details to follow; so this might have a longer shelf life than nine days. But how many times have we revisited this subject? We agonized over the fire at the girls’ correctional centre in Armadale, when seven wards of state burnt to death in an over-crowded dorm, in 2010. Have successive governments really demonstrated that they care for the welfare of our children, especially those most at risk and in conflict with the law? Meanwhile, plans are afoot to transfer those girls being housed at the Fort Augusta adult women’s prison to another adult facility on South Camp Road in Kingston. Thank you, Minister Hanna, that will greatly solve the problem. Are we looking at, perhaps, root causes? And have all the children now been removed from the horrible police lock-ups?
Kingston’s South Camp Adult Correctional Centre – the site of the “Gun Court.” The government is seeking to “retrofit” the centre to accommodate girls.
The Fort Augusta women’s prison, where girls are currently incarcerated alongside adult women.
The much-respected Monsignor Gregory Ramkissoon, of the Mustard Seed Communities, linked the above two stories – pointing out the twisted and just-plain-wrong priorities. “Why do we have a children’s advocate or a Child Development Agency if we are still putting children in adult correctional centres? Why are we spending our money on SUVs rather than on children’s care?” he asks. Why, indeed.
Monsignor Gregory Ramkissoon (photo: Randy Economy’s blog)
Meanwhile we must be careful about inhaling deeply. After “noxious fumes” (a favorite journalistic term here) were emitted recently by the Petroleum Corporation of Jamaica, this week there was an ammonia leak on the Mandela Highway that connects Kingston and Spanish Town. A gas company was responsible for this. But don’t worry, all is well. The weather is getting dryer, though. Next will be the Riverton City dump, optimistically called a “landfill.” Time for it to catch fire again. But here I go, predicting doom and gloom again.
Director General of the Planning Institute of Jamaica Gladstone Hutchinson, who will be returning to his job in the United States in January 2013.
Talking about doom and gloom: It’s the economy, stupid (again). The Planning Institute of Jamaica revealed the bad news mid-week. I won’t bore you with all the depressing “minuses” but suffice it to say that in the nine months up to September 2012, real Gross Domestic Product (GDP) declined by 0.3 per cent; the biggest declines over that period were in the mining, construction and transport, storage and communication sectors. In the third quarter alone, the economy contracted 0.6 per cent. I can’t tell you what the answers are; but I feel that we are on a slippery slope, and that we are not able to dig our heels in to stop the sliding. I hope I am wrong. It’s just a feeling.
Meanwhile, commentator Dennis Chung has written a very good column on the subject of the recession-that-we-now-cannot-deny. He proposes three solutions for us to drag ourselves back out of the slide: working seriously on Jamaica’s energy issues, including alternative energy solutions, reducing the enormous cost of importing oil etc; reducing costly food imports; and tackling the law and order problem which continues to plague our society. I could not agree more. Minister Phillip Paulwell is now looking at alternative energy; one hopes this will bear some fruit, and that it will all result in action, not talk.
Has the Finance Minister commented on any of this? I am not sure. He has, however, conceded that the negotiations with the International Monetary Fund may not be concluded by the end of December, after all. It may be in January, but as the Information Minister said, “Let’s not quibble about it.” She loves that word!
Financial analyst Dennis Chung always injects plenty of common sense into his analysis, which is clear and unbiased.
Back to that other pachyderm, crime. In an excellent op-ed (link below), a former Fulbright Professor and criminologist, Bernard Headley observes that “a balanced development and nation-building strategy ought to include understanding, teaching and practicing the ways of peace – respect and tolerance, healing and restoration, love and justice. These are, in the final analysis, the ultimate ‘protective factors’ against crime and disorder.” We are told (and goodness knows we should be aware of this by now) that Jamaica is a “Christian country.” All these beautiful Christian principles should be built into the country’s infrastructure of governance. But, strange… how come there is so little of it “deh ’bout”?
There have been various reports of reductions in crime in specific parishes. However, murders are not going down, overall. I know that full well. If you compare the sad lists of names at the end of each of my weekly blog posts, I think you will agree that nothing has changed. The numbers are pretty consistent, don’t you think?
The police have been really busy. By my count, they have killed seven Jamaicans – one for each day of the past week. Four killed in one “alleged shootout” in St. Elizabeth were allegedly linked to the “guns for drugs” trade between Jamaica and Haiti. Residents allege that the police chased the four men and shot them. It’s funny how the accounts of residents differ so dramatically from those of the police, isn’t it? Do they ever agree on a story? In St. Elizabeth, there were apparently many witnesses; hopefully they will give statements to members of the over-worked Independent Commission of Investigations (INDECOM). In one of the incidents in Kingston, a policeman was injured.
I don’t like it: The all-too-frequent reports of robberies at schools – I think probably on average once a week these reports emerge. It is usually computers and electronic equipment (often donated by parents, past students or kind overseas organizations). But it’s all fair game. Let’s help ourselves to any cash that might have been saved for a school outing. And there’s food and drink in the kitchen! It truly distresses me to see the faces of stressed-out school principals, often fighting back tears, giving details of the theft, while the camera pans round a ransacked school office or computer lab. Who buys these computers? And what about the children?
Oh, please: The preachers-on-buses issue has lingered on. A “tweep” of mine commented that she had to endure “two hours of Christian music” on the privately-run Knutsford Express, which does longer-distance trips. Is there no escape? Meanwhile, the Public Defender… But no, I am not going to go there. Should I mention the words Tivoli Gardens in the same paragraph? Please read Jaevion Nelson’s article, below.
I like it: The Minister of Justice has also been busy, in a much more positive way I must say. The Senate finally passed a very important piece of legislation, the Evidence (Special Measures) Act 2012. The bill will allow “vulnerable witnesses” (such as children, and U.S.-based victims of the hateful lotto scam) to give evidence via video. As the head of the Jamaican Bar Association Ian Wilkinson noted this evening, however, the government should hurry up and pass the accompanying regulations, so that the law can be properly implemented.
A little baffling: The two security guards charged for the beating of an alleged gay student at the University of Technology have pleaded Not Guilty. Of course, it is their right. But they were picked out in an identity parade, and they should be pretty easy to identify from the YouTube video that went viral, too. But I am no lawyer. I am clearly missing something.
What a surprise: A review of the antiquated anti-buggery law, famously promised by Prime Minister Portia Simpson Miller during a debate, is not going to happen any time soon. But least one should be happy that, as Minister Falconer noted, the economy and crime are high priorities for the government. Oh! Perhaps some people have seen the two elephants pictured in this post…
Now on, to the good stuff: World AIDS Day is coming up (December 1) and the Caribbean has recorded a significant decrease in HIV infections – a decrease of 42 per cent since 2001. This is largely due to the increased availability of anti-retroviral drugs. I am sure we will be hearing more details on Jamaica in the next week or two. But I would like to take this opportunity to congratulate the dedicated, hard-working Jamaicans who have worked, and continue to work, towards “zero” new infections: the Ministry of Health, Jamaica AIDS Support for Life, the Jamaica Business Council on HIV/AIDS, Eve for Life, the parish AIDS committees, and other organizations that play their part.
Congratulations to Olivia McGilchrist, the winner of the Super Plus Under 40 Artist of the Year competition, an event at Kingston’s Mutual Gallery that has gained in prestige. Ms. McGilchrist explored issues of identity in her photographs (rather odd, though, that of the four finalists three were photographers. Can we have more painters or even sculptors in the future, if possible?)
I am very pleased to learn, also, that several key private sector companies have decided to engage in charitable activities throughout the Christmas season – which now seems to be upon us. Digicel, GraceKennedy and Stewart’s Automotive Group are among them; also, the RJR Group is now making a public appeal for the Annotto Bay Hospital in St. Mary, which was badly damaged during Hurricane Sandy – in particular the children’s and maternity wards. Do support all these activities in the spirit of Christmas.
Congratulations also to two pioneering surgeons, who have teamed up to perform the second minimally invasive surgery – laparoscopic prostatectomies, two long words there – at Cornwall Regional Hospital in Montego Bay. I am sure there is much more potential for this kind of amazing teamwork that can do so much for our often struggling health system. The UK’s Dr. Christopher Eden and Jamaica’s Dr. Roy McGregor are awesome. And they look so young, too!
I mentioned the recent, amazingly successful Caribbean Beta 2012 for young IT entrepreneurs, which I attended; see my blog post at http://petchary.wordpress.com/2012/11/20/its-getting-beta-young-tech-entrepreneurs-in-jamaica/. I was really happy to read a report about the founder of a locally-based call center in the small town of Junction, St. Elizabeth, Lincoln Gayle. A graduate of Northern Caribbean University (which is making strides in Information Technology), Gayle currently lives in the United States but is a native of the pretty town of Southfield.
A community of bloggers: It was wonderful to meet so many Jamaican bloggers (there were around fifty of us!) at the Jamaica Bloggers Meet-Up in the cozy courtyard of the Knutsford Court Hotel. UNICEF is sponsoring a special blog challenge for World AIDS Day, which many of us will be going for… The tempting prize of a Samsung Tablet is being dangled before our eyes! It was a great get-together. Congratulations to the organizers of the third Jamaica Blog Awards – the only such awards in the English-speaking Caribbean, I believe. The hot competition begins early next year!
Last but certainly not least: The list below is of Jamaicans who have lost their lives since my last blog post. My sincere condolences and love to all their families, friends and loved ones, who are mourning their loss. One day, I wish, there will be no such list at the end of my weekly blog posts. I live in hope.
Jamaican Bloggers Unite: Here we are in the lobby of the Knutsford Court Hotel!
Lincoln Gayle, of Innovative Outsourcing Company Limited.
Olivia McGilchrist: Red Dress #1
By the way, if you want to see some of the television news reports, you can look up evening and noon news broadcasts which are archived at http://news.cvmtv.com/index.php?news=watch at CVM Television, which tends to have more detailed reports, I find. But you can find a link to some of the Prime Minister’s comments below on TVJ. Both websites are useful. Radio Jamaica and Nationwide News Network also have live streaming of their programs.
A great team: Dr. Chris Eden and Dr. Roy McGregor before their first operation in Jamaica in 2011.
By the police: Oneil Green, 33, Kilmarnock, Westmoreland; Kenrick Bennett, New Town, St. Elizabeth; Rohan Barrett, New Town, St. Elizabeth; Carlington Wallace, New Town, St. Elizabeth; Turline Wallace, New Town, St. Elizabeth; unidentified man, Orange Street, Kingston; Unidentified man, Red Hills Road, Kingston
Cab driver Albert Gordon, one of the murder statistics
Albert Gordon, Richmond Park, Kingston
Unidentified woman, Bog Walk, St. Catherine
Unidentified man, Forest Hill Gardens, St. Andrew
Everald Singh, 30, Grey Ground, Manchester
Danny Broderick, 22, Hopeton District, Manchester
Valentine Reid, 47, Riverton City, Kingston
Jacquelyn Harriott, 40, Windsor Heights, St. Catherine
Richard McCalla, 33, Hellshire Heights, St. Catherine
Allan White, 63, Job Lane, Spanish Town, St. Catherine
Ernest Lumsden, 70, Bartons, St. Catherine
Courtney Mills, 34, Marlie Mount/Old Harbour, St. Catherine
http://news.cvmtv.com/index.php?news=watch (CVM Television news clips)
http://jamaica-gleaner.com/gleaner/20121122/lead/lead1.html (Government shells out $60 million for new vehicles: Jamaica Gleaner)
http://jamaica-gleaner.com/gleaner/20121124/lead/lead1.html (We deserve these cars: PM defends $60 million spent on ministers’ new vehicles: Gleaner)
http://www.televisionjamaica.com/Programmes/PrimeTimeNews.aspx/Videos/22437 (PM responds to vehicle purchase: TVJ)
http://jamaica-gleaner.com/gleaner/20120322/lead/lead91.html (Falconer clears air on vehicle purchases: MARCH 2012 Gleaner report)
http://jamaica-gleaner.com/gleaner/20121125/cleisure/cleisure3.html (Government succumbs to bling culture: Gary Spaulding op-ed/Sunday Gleaner)
http://jamaica-gleaner.com/gleaner/20121125/focus/focus2.html (Has everyone turned off the lights on growth? Martin Henry column/Sunday Gleaner)
http://jamaica-gleaner.com/gleaner/20121125/cleisure/cleisure5.html (Will Witter arise from slumber? Jaevion Nelson op-ed/Sunday Gleaner)
http://dmarcuswilliams.blogspot.com/2012/11/portia-loves-poor.html?showComment=1353699155063#c6788092347541038464 (Portia loves the poor: blog post by D. Marcus Williams)
http://jamaica-gleaner.com/gleaner/20121125/focus/focus5.html (It’s the Church that needs salvation: Gordon Robinson column/Sunday Gleaner)
http://www.jis.gov.jm/news/leads-117/32368 (Cabinet satisfied with pace of IMF negotiations: Jamaica Information Service)
http://jamaica-gleaner.com/gleaner/20121122/lead/lead9.html (Debt to international organizations could hurt Jamaica – government technocrat: Jamaica Gleaner)
http://jamaica-gleaner.com/gleaner/20121125/lead/lead1.html (Squander! Government spends more than $32 million to keep old, empty Jamintel building safe for pigeons: Sunday Gleaner)
http://rjrnewsonline.com/local/guards-implicated-in-utech-beating-appear-in-court (Guards implicated in UTech beating appear in court: RJR)
http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/news/Promised-buggery-review-put-on-back-burner_13056162 (Promised buggery law review put on back burner: Jamaica Observer)
http://jamaica-gleaner.com/gleaner/20121122/letters/letters4.html (The struggle for common people to get justice: Letter/Jamaica Gleaner)
http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/letters/Keeping-the-buggery-law-is-preposterous_13042100 (Keeping the buggery law is preposterous: Letter/Jamaica Observer)
http://jamaica-gleaner.com/latest/article.php?id=41318 (Senate passes Evidence Act: Jamaica Gleaner)
http://jamaica-gleaner.com/gleaner/20121123/lead/lead6.html (St. James murders down: Jamaica Gleaner)
http://jamaica-gleaner.com/latest/article.php?id=41355 (Murders down in south St. Catherine: Sunday Gleaner)
http://rjrnewsonline.com/local/indecom-to-probe-police-shooting-of-four-men (INDECOM to proble police shooting of four men: RJR)
http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/news/Dead-teen-was-tormented (Dead teen was tormented: Jamaica Observer)
http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/news/Remove-Prendergast- (Remove Prendergast: Relatives of Vanessa Wint label Commissioner of Corrections as uncaring: Jamaica Observer)
http://jamaica-gleaner.com/gleaner/20121125/lead/lead11.html (Who was watching the suicidal teen? Sunday Gleaner)
http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/news/Slipping-through-the-cracks_13075685 (Slipping through the cracks: Sunday Observer)
http://jamaica-gleaner.com/gleaner/20121125/lead/lead92.html (“You are all to blame”: Sunday Gleaner)
http://rjrnewsonline.com/local/policy-changes-in-the-making-for-handling-of-detainees (Policy changes in the making for handling of detainees: RJR)
http://jamaica-gleaner.com/gleaner/20121123/lead/lead7.html (Fewer cases of sex with minors reported: Jamaica Gleaner)
http://jamaica-gleaner.com/latest/article.php?id=41319 (Family wants Corrections Commissioner fired: Jamaica Gleaner)
http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/news/-Invoking-God-s-blessings-_13054007 (“Invoking God’s blessings”: Jamaica Observer)
http://jamaica-gleaner.com/gleaner/20121125/lead/lead91.html (Paulwell steps up bid for cheaper electricity: Sunday Gleaner)
http://jamaica-gleaner.com/gleaner/20121122/cleisure/cleisure3.html (Homosexual reparative therapy revisited: Rev. Clinton Chisholm op-ed/Jamaica Gleaner)
http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/columns/Good-move–Hardley-Lewin_13056130 (Good move, Hardley Lewin: Jamaica Observer/Mark Wignall column)
http://jamaica-gleaner.com/gleaner/20121123/lead/lead93.html (NEPA performs balancing act – agency provides residents with alternative livelihoods: Jamaica Gleaner)
http://www.jis.gov.jm/news/leads-104/32365 (Crime down, more qualified Jamaicans: Jamaica Information Service)
http://jamaica-gleaner.com/gleaner/20121121/letters/letters2.html (End victimization in S.W. St. Ann: Letter/Jamaica Gleaner)
http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/news/Family–colleagues-mourn-cabbie-s-killing_13053266 (Family, colleagues mourn cabbie’s killing: Jamaica Observer)
http://jamaica-gleaner.com/gleaner/20121125/lead/lead7.html (Let’s end this 50-year relationship with crime: Bernard Headley op-ed/Sunday Gleaner)
http://jamaica-gleaner.com/gleaner/20121122/news/news2.html (Manchester police find fleeing lotto scammers: Jamaica Gleaner)
http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/NEWS/One-dead–3-000-lbs-of-ganja-seized (One dead, 3,000 pounds of ganja seized: Jamaica Observer)
http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/NEWS/Caribbean-records-significant-decrease-in-HIV-infections (Caribbean records significant decrease in HIV infections: Jamaica Observer)
http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/news/School-feeding-woes—Only-6-of-46-milk-delivery-trucks-refrigerated_13056355 (School feeding woes: Jamaica Observer)
http://jamaica-gleaner.com/gleaner/20121121/cleisure/cleisure4.html (Reality check: would you invest in Jamaica? Dennie Quill column/Jamaica Gleaner)
http://jamaica-gleaner.com/gleaner/20121123/business/business6.html (Wehby rallies “growth creators”: Jamaica Gleaner)
http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/business/Why-is-Jamaica-back-in-recession- (Why is Jamaica back in recession? Dennis Chung column/Jamaica Observer)
http://jamaica-gleaner.com/gleaner/20121123/cleisure/cleisure4.html (Jamaica needs to produce: Letter from Metry Seaga to Jamaica Gleaner)
http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/news/-2-B-duty-Loss ($2 billion duty loss! Tax reversal drives down demand for new cars: Jamaica Observer)
http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/business/More-tax-from-consumption (More tax from consumption: Jamaica Observer)
http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/news/Phillips-puts-doubt-on-December-IMF-deal (Phillips puts doubt on December IMF deal: Jamaica Observer)
http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/columns/-Stop-waiting-on-the-IMF–_13017382 (“Stop waiting on the IMF”! Jamaica Observer/Jean Lowrie-Chin column)
http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/NEWS/JFJ-disappointed-at-delay-in-Tivoli-report (JFJ disappointed at delay in Tivoli report: Jamaica Observer)
http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/NEWS/Party-time–Holness-says-JLP-s-political-campaign-starts-now (Holness says JLP’s political campaign starts now: Jamaica Observer)
http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/editorial/Putting-our-JLP–PNP-houses-in-order_13035768 (Putting our JLP, PNP houses in order: Jamaica Observer editorial)
http://jamaica-gleaner.com/gleaner/20121121/cleisure/cleisure1.html (JLP must obey its constitution: Jamaica Gleaner editorial)
http://jamaica-gleaner.com/gleaner/20121121/business/business1.html (Back in recession – Jamaican economy contracts for third quarter: Jamaica Gleaner)
http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/business/Jamaica-goes-deeper-into-recession (Jamaica goes deeper into recession: Jamaica Observer)
http://jamaica-gleaner.com/gleaner/20121122/lead/lead95.html (Tax reform remains high on agenda: Jamaica Gleaner)
http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/NEWS/Customs-boss-to-meet-with-frustrated-exporters_13018303 (Customs boss to meet with frustrated exporters: Jamaica Observer)
http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/columns/Potty-training-and-nation-building_13052344 (Potty training and nation building: Jamaica Observer/Grace Virtue op-ed – very good!)
http://www.jis.gov.jm/news/leads/32370 (PAHO, WHO support a smoke-free environment: Jamaica Information Service)
http://jamaica-gleaner.com/gleaner/20121122/lead/lead2.html (NEPA, Petrojam at odds over explanation for odor: Jamaica Gleaner)
http://jamaica-gleaner.com/gleaner/20121122/lead/lead6.html (UDC set to embark on “Operation Restoration”: Jamaica Gleaner)
http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/news/Race-still-defines-relationships-in-America–says-French-journalist_13053322 (Race still defines relationships in America, says French journalist: Jamaica Observer)
http://jamaica-gleaner.com/gleaner/20121118/arts/arts5.html (Super Plus Under 40 Artist of the Year Competition excites: Jamaica Gleaner)
http://www.jis.gov.jm/news/leads/32361 (Protecting vulnerable crucial under IMF program – UNCTAD head: Jamaica Information Service)
http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/editorial/Developing-country-unity—what-unity-_13044444 (Developing country unity – what unity? Jamaica Observer editorial)
http://jamaica-gleaner.com/gleaner/20121122/news/news8.html (Corporate entities nice up the Christmas! Jamaica Gleaner)
http://jamaica-gleaner.com/gleaner/20121122/news/news4.html (Cornwall Regional team performs second minimally invasive surgery: Jamaica Gleaner)
http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/news/Renowned-astrophysicist-Neil-deGrasse-Tyson-to-visit (Renowned astrophysicist Neil deGrasse Tyson to visit: Jamaica Observer)
http://jamaica-gleaner.com/gleaner/20121117/news/news7.html (African board game arrives in Jamaica: Gleaner)
http://jamaica-gleaner.com/gleaner/20121117/lead/lead4.html (Stepping from the shadows: Lincoln Gayle: Jamaica Gleaner)
http://www.rjrgroup.com/news/rjr-makes-public-appeal-help-restore-annotto-bay-hospital-after-damage-hurricane-sandy (RJR makes public appeal to help restore Annotto Bay Hospital after damage)
Sunday Elephants: November 11, 2012 (petchary.wordpress.com)
Sunday Whatever, November 18, 2012 (petchary.wordpress.com)