March 12, 2010

Can Fiji Afford to be a Welfare State at this time?

We now hear that the current initiative for food stamps is some sort of grand plan to "widen the welfare net".

A very noble idea. But also an expensive one as the Ministry of Education is quickly realizing

Social welfare programmes need to be better thought out -- the initiatives being proposed todate are lazy, short-term in nature, unsustainable and only encouraging of the "hand out mentality".

Furthermore these hand-outs are ultimately being borne by the middle-class who are themselves unable to escape burgeoning financial burdens.

The bottom-line of course is that the country cannot afford to be shouldering such a burden when it is simultaneously struggling to stimulate a stagnant economy.

Yes there are many citizens in this country who struggle to make ends meet and live well below the poverty line and who are deserving of assistance, but playing Father Christmas is the wrong approach.

Citizens have every right to expect better ideas from policy-makers, and teaching our people to fish as opposed to handing out the fish to our people to eat are the policies they need to be investigating and implementing expeditiously.


discombobulated said...

The whole country will be a welfare case after Cyclone Tomas hits us. The regime will not be able to sustain this one ... let alone control it, arrest it, kidnap it or censor it.

Here is Mother Nature at her most ferocious. Be prepared everyone. God bless.

MJField said...

Bring Bhaini's reign to a quick end said...

In my initial posting on various Fiji pro-democracy blogs, I put the case that, for the good of everyone, Bainimarama’s dictatorship over Fiji must be brought to a non-violent end as quickly as is humanly possible. I also sought suggestions from other bloggers as to how this could be achieved. And I reported that I had a few ideas myself and I pledged to develop them and report back. I have been disappointed by the response (only Keep The Faith from “Intelligensiya” got back to me). However I am not discouraged. And, after a great deal of hard thinking, I believe I have discovered the key to the door that could dislodge Bainimarama.
In one word , the key is “honesty”, or, in Frank Bainimarama’s case that complete abscence thereof. Honesty is the one quality that Bainimarama has never exhibited in a convincing way. As reported by all the blogs, he has lied about everything from holding elections to returning to barracks. I would go so far as to say that FrankBainimarama is a congenital liar. It therefore follows that someone so dishonest has a criminal mind. And if you hold the degree of power that Frank Bainimara does, what does your criminal mind tell you to do? I think I know the answer to that question.
It goes like this: Frank Bainimarama used the charge of corruption as the excuse for his coup, which threw out the Qarase SDL government and installed himself as the major domo over the Fdiji Islands. But the only real evidence of corruption subsequently uncovered was not in the former SDL Government, but in Bainimarama’s own regime.
Back when we had a degree of relative meida freedom the story broke; about Bainimaram’s furtive attempt to secretly help himeself to more than $180,000 by calling it “salary owed in lieu of leave.” That act was nothing short of criminal corruption. Then Mahendra Chaudhry, the interim finance minister who had leapt to Bainimarama’s defence over the back pay scam, was revelled to have millions in donations stashed in his personal bacnk account in Australia. The other factor I have carefully considered is the complete lack of transparency and accountability in Frank Bainimarama’s so-called government. It would appear Bainimarama has gone out of his way to throw a heavy shroud of secrecy over every aspect of his administration, from the detailed provisions of decrees affecting business through to details of ministerial salaries. If this situation didn’t already stack the odds heavily in favour of anyone in power wanting to line their own pockets, what about the savage and total censorship of Fiji’s media? Incredible as it might sound, Bainimarama’s complete control of the nation means that he could literally conduct an armed robbery of a bank and not one word would ever be reported about it!
Yes friends, I understand fully that Bainimarama appears untouchable and yet I was talking about finding the key to the door that could dislodge him. But, if we know where to look, the key is waiting for us. We are, after all the blogging community, are we not?
That’s right, the key is out knowledge of Fiji, our sence of right and wrong and our ability to communicate with each other in a way that will widen our audience to include people and organisations outside Fiji that have an interest in Fiji. That’s how we turn the key in the lock. That’s how we expose Frank Bainimarama to the world.
By our concerted efforts in monitoring, recording, documenting and reporting, in every details, the excesses of Frnk Bainimarama’s disgusting dictatorship, the total lack of honesty, we can build the dossier that regional and world leaders will, ultimately, find impossible to ignore.
As I reported in my original posting a few weeks ago, I was back in Fiji for the first time in a few years and I was totally overwhelmed by the absolute probablility of economic and societal catastrophe that now hangs over Fiji. To me the situation is clear: Bainimarama is our cancer; the free world (Aust, Kiwi, US and EU) are our doctors.
It’s time we started getting clever about getting the right medical help to treat the cancer!

Tim said...

OK......well, apparently I'm limited to twitter like comment as a function of feedback.

Unfortunately, I dunn what to delete, because there are opinions about the concept of the welfare state idea, as well as the pathetic little munters that are incapable of rubbing a couple of original ideas together without expecting hundreds of dollars per hour (plus GST). (That btw is the ultimate in "hand-out mentality"). And so..... I'll attempt to comment by complying with a 4,096 char limitation. It follows

Tim said...

IF however somewhere like Fiji cannot provide a basic level of health and education, ensure that its roads and other infrastructure are not potholed and munted to the extent they are, whilst at the same time thinking it can provide an "RFMF", my belief is that it has fuck all of a future - at least for its "public".
Fiji may NOT be able to afford a welfare state. Given its natural resources, the caring, friendly and compassionate nature of its population, its history as a former colony and its potential as an independant post-colonial state, IT CAN AFFORD to provide at least 1 million people a standard of living where many aren't reduced to something aking to subsistence-living - it's the 21st Century.
It can also afford Fiji to be a place where its population is in control of their own destiny, and where its population owns its own resources, NOT as prostitutes to some outsiders view of what is best for it, BUT from the point of view of what it's people want.
NONE of that is going to come from some dysfunctional, despotic little munter, propped up by an undisciplined, corrupt, machismo-oriented bunch of bullies who are pretty much so insecure of thier past, their indiscretions, their future, their fear and their stupidity that they're willing to be led like sheep to the slaughter (and if it continues, no doubt it will be a Hal-Al type slaughter - which only means that their throats will be cut on the vertical plane rather than the horizontal - either way they've expired).
I agree with you Intelly - (can Fiji afford a Welfare State?). But the question that should have preceeded it has been ommited: Can Fiji afford a military (especially an undisciplined, self-obsessed, out-of-control, self-interested one - where, as history has now repeatedly shown, is more concerned about its own survival than it is about those it was supposedly consitutued to protect).

Tim said...

Social welfare programmes need to be better thought out - the initiatives being proposed to date are lazy, short-term in nature, unsustainable and only encouraging of the "handout mentality".
Couldn't agree more!!!!! (in that proposals are "lazy, short-term and unsustainable!").
That's been a problem plaguing governments at either end of the political spectrum - especially those that have sucuumbed to a neo-liberal agenda, a facist one (and the two are often hard to differentiate), OR at the other end of the spectrum - something the likes of a Shameen or two might have been hoping for. (One or both embouldened in the past by one or more offshore "experts" offering them solace and solidaristic succour. Oh how they misjudged their guides' intentions!
Not only has it all given then cause for review, but perhaps that's why they've inherited the egotistical nature of their idols - one of them still scurries around the Kapiti Coast here in NZ (nea Wellington), lamenting his lost youth and influence, protesting his coolness, his concern and his objectivity by running a few lines on a blog, and trying to get others to celebrate his wealth of theoretical knowledge rather than his actual experience). There is a word to describe most of that he's no doubt familiar with: Trajic! or "tradge", or "ouch that hurt").
Most of us just think there goes another seedy, desperado, dirty-old-man and try and get on with life But if we actually chastened ourselves and held the concern I personally feel guilty of not having done more to rectify, we'd have challenged the likes of this pathetic, publicity-seeking, egotistical, sick-fucker a long long time ago. My only excuse is that he has contemporaries that are worse and that I can;t take on the World. There's a Gates, and a Barr, and pistol-shooting Bubba, and one really useless little fuckwit that is desperate to describe himself as an Attorney-General. All I'd love to meet face-to-face!
The over-use of "consultants" that merely dredge up some old, failed, or ideologically driven policy or analysis from the past, and try to use it as a template - all the while toting up their consultant's bill at hundred's of dollars an hour (often on the basis of familiarity with word-processing and spreadsheet applications that provide a means of cut/copy amd paste). I think John Sami has shown us all that - but no doubt as long as he breathes, he'll keep trying it on because it's all he's got going. Regurgitating failed bullshit at a minimum fo a couple of hundred dollars an hour is all he knows - and most of it's been learnt parrot-fashion. But then there's no real difference between him or someone like Bubba-da-Yippe-I-Aye-Khayuum. All bullshit and no substance!
Fiji probably can't afford a Welfare State, and nor now can many states that were participants in founding the concept.

Anonymous said...

Kean, before everything else in life, get back into your little jail cell and put things right from there.
Have the guts to reimburse all the clean money paid to you while you were in prison.
And finally, do your time and then you can speak on clean issues.
Dont be a coward.