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General Discussion / In this land of plenty.
« on: March 05, 2008, 04:25:57 PM »


A look inside the executive jet Manning flew in

It is a Bombardier jet after all.

The jet which Caribbean Airlines is set to lease will be the same model type on which Prime Minister Patrick Manning participated in a test flight to Antigua in September 2006.

Caribbean Airlines chairman Arthur Lok Jack yesterday confirmed that the executive private jet being acquired by the State-owned airline will be a state-of-the-art Bombardier Global Express XRS.

In September 2006, Manning had led a team of Government officials, which included then education minister Hazel Manning and Works Minister Colm Imbert, on a test flight aboard a Bombardier Global Express XRS jet.

The party boarded the aircraft from the old Piarco Airport entrance, was flown north to Antigua and without landing, the flight returned to Piarco. At the time, Government deflected questions on whether it planned to buy a private jet.

Yesterday, Lok Jack revealed that since Bombardier started manufacturing these jets in 1999, some 240 had been delivered. According to information on the Internet, the first flight of the aircraft took place in January 2005.

The same source states that the jet costs approximately US$48 million. Michael Lee Chin, the Jamaican Canada-based billionaire, owns a Global Express XRS.

Lok Jack said there were three jets manufactured by different suppliers which fit the required specifications for long range travel-the Global Express XRS, Gulf Stream 5 and the Boeing BBJ. He said the Boeing BBJ had a longer range and seated "twenty-something" people, but it was much more expensive.

He said CA agreed that if Government provided enough business, there would be very little downside risk for the airline.

"The amount of time they would be utilising this plane for, we would lose no money. But there is upside potential, because if it goes well for the first two years, then I am sure we would build the business and become a profitable business," Lok Jack said.

Lamenting that people were "mauvais languing" the venture and were coming up the wild and inaccurate statements, Lok Jack asked: "Who else could have an executive jet business other than Caribbean Airlines? We are in the airline business, we have mechanics, we have hangers, et cetera."

Lok Jack also shot down the "ridiculous" allegations that the plane would cost $US20 million a month to maintain, saying if that were so "we could buy five, even ten jets".

The long-range Bombardier Global Express XRS adds a forward fuel tank to extend the range to 11,390 kilometres (6,150 nautical miles). The aircraft also has a new "zero flaps" take-off ability, which will allow access to more "hot and high" airports.

I am not oppose to Mr Manning our other members of Parliment enjoying the perks of their elected office. However you were elected to serve the need of the people. Cariibbean Airlines is a State owned ariline therefore tax payer money was used to finance the purchase of this executive jet. Is the goverment above flying first class in the national carrirer?

is this money not better invested in the health care system. Oh never mind you will just use your privte jet to fly to Cuba for your next heart check up. As long as you are healthy becuase that will be official state business and a justifed use.

Dead baby in mom 12 hours
Wednesday, March 5 2008

Melissa Sammy sits on her bed at Ward 13B of the San Fernando General Hospital waiting for doctors to surgically remove her baby after they...A 22-YEAR-OLD maternity patient at the San Fernando General Hospital was yesterday forced to lie in pain for more than 12 hours as she waited for doctors to induce labour for her to give birth to her dead baby.

Melissa Sammy bled heavily and experienced severe pain on Ward 13 as she waited to be taken to the labour room.

Sammy was admitted to the ward at about 3 am yesterday bleeding and in pain. The doctors told her and relatives that they could not detect a heartbeat from the baby. At about 9 am, an ultrasound confirmed the baby had died.

“They sent her back to the ward and promised to induce labour. Look how long ago that was and we still waiting,” said Angela Subero, the mother of Sammy’s common-law husband Marvin Subero.

The couple have a four-year-old daughter Jada. The family is from Mapepire Road, Whiteland. “I can’t understand why the system work like this. My grandchild is already dead and I can’t afford to lose my daughter-in-law now,” said Angela.

Angela said a nurse told her Sammy was not in danger.

“She told me that the baby is in a sac and nothing could happen to Melissa.” At about 1.45 pm, Sammy was given an injection to help her sleep.

But her family feared as the hours passed that her life would be in danger the longer the dead baby remained in her.

Sammy had been attending pre-natal clinic at the Gasparillo Health Centre for the term of her pregnancy and the baby was due on February 14.

In the days after, she began to experience mild bleeding but the medical personnel at the clinic insisted she was not ready to give birth.

“Two weeks later the baby is dead and still inside her,” said Angela. Hospital sources said the doctor to perform a surgical procedure to remove the dead baby was on duty at the clinic for most of the day.

Chairman of the South West Regional Health Authority Imtiaz Ahamad was unable to comment when contacted.


General Discussion / TT cautioned against oil-dependency
« on: February 28, 2008, 08:14:35 AM »

Feature: TT cautioned against oil-dependency
Raymond Edwards
BBC Caribbean, Port of Spain, Trinidad and Tobago

Trinidad and Tobago's major energy players are looking at the future of the industry at a conference in Port of Spain.
Current oil prices linger at around 100 dollars a barrel, and for economies like Trinidad's, where there is a heavy dependence on this sector, there is concern about just how sustainable the industry is.

Although oil and gas prices are high the world over, there are concerns in the country’s energy sector about the proposed 'downstream industries' that are being pushed by the government.

Many of these industries, like aluminum smelting, require natural gas to fuel their processes.

There is unease, however, about whether the country has enough gas to supply these plants, fulfil their export commitments, and supply the domestic market as well.

One of the companies which attempts to predict the levels of energy resources available in Trinidad and Tobago, is US-based petroleum consultants, Ryder Scott.

One of its reports last year, led several local business people to call on the government to slow its expansion drive in the energy sector.

The company's senior international vice president, Herman Acuna, told BBC Caribbean that oil and gas prices will remain high.

He also said economies like Trinidad and Tobago's should use these energy booms to diversify.

“Oil and gas can be a catalyst for a strong economy, but oil and gas is also a catalyst for the diversification of your economy.”

Using the United Arab Emirates as an example, Mr Acuna referred to the fact that less than 50% of Dubai’s and Abu Dhabi’s GDP is related to oil and gas:

“Yet when we think about those economies, we think they are oil and gas economies.”

“The truth of the matter is they are shifting and diversifying – using the wealth that was initially, perhaps, generated by the industry.”

Ryder-Scott is expected to start the next audit of Trinidad and Tobago's energy reserves next week.

Despite Mr. Acuna's optimism about the expansion of the economy, some experts, like Central Bank Governor Ewart Williams, are concerned about the so-called ‘Dutch disease’.

That's an economic term that explains the relationship between the exploitation of a country's natural resources and the decline of its manufacturing sector.

Mr Williams told the annual petroleum conference that the country's dependence on oil and gas, coupled with rising inflation, is a worrying trend.

“The Central Bank needs to tighten monetary policy, to make sure that inflationary expectations do not become embedded.”

“We don’t want a situation where people continue to expect inflation to continue to rise – and that’s one of the things we are trying to deal with.”

The Energy Minister, Conrad Enil, says, in light of these economic concerns, there will be no new primary petrochemical production, unless it is in support of a downstream

Jokes / Mathematical Proof
« on: September 19, 2007, 09:34:22 PM »

General Discussion / An Afro woman's love for Indian dance
« on: September 12, 2007, 05:43:37 AM »
By NEWSDAY REPORTER Wednesday, September 12 2007

ALTHOUGH she is of African heritage, Nikeisha Charles has harboured a deep love for Indian dance since her childhood days growing up in Mandingo Road, Princes Town.

Charles is doing herself and Trinidad and Tobago proud as she is now in high demand in New York and India where she performs with her teacher Archana Joglekar and fellow dancers of the Archana Nritalaya Dance Company.

Today, she is a well-respected Khatak (an ancient form of dance) performer in New York. Asked why she chose Indian dance, she said: “There was no other dance in my neighbourhood and I couldn’t resist the sound of the Indian drums.”

Charles was encouraged by her mom Majorie Charles to learn the Indian dance style and today, the proud woman is filled with deep pride at the progress of her daughter.

On a short vacation home, Charles sat down for an interview at a Hindu Temple in Central Trinidad. She wore a sari and spoke frankly of her career and how she is currently mixing work with her academic pursuits.

At 23, Charles is pursuing a Masters degree at the New York Institute of Technology in Labour Management, having already graduated with a certificate in Human Resource Management.

From John Jay College of Criminal Justice, she was awarded a BS degree in Criminal Justice and Public Administration

“I left Trinidad at age twelve and once I was in New York, I started looking for any television channel that would have Indian dance. I got the address of the Archana Nritalaya company and contacted them. But I was not allowed to go out for two years because of money constraints and other personal matters,” Charles said. “When I had the opportunity to go, I felt that I was set free at last.”

She noted that the people in her class were very receptive towards her as they sensed her commitment to the artform. Race was never an issue. Charles said she quickly fell in love with the dance artform and in her own words, said that there was no turning back. Night and day, she practiced and it came as no surprise that within a year of joining the class, she was chosen to perform with the senior dancers. Another of Neikisha’s wishes came through when she was selected among the best 25 girls to go to New Delhi in India to perform.

“It was a dream come true. I stepped foot in India and felt like I had reached home. The place is so much like Trinidad, it is amazing. And the people are so friendly that I never once thought that I was an African girl in an Indian dance group. I was simply one of the dancers and I was well respected as such,” she said.

Speaking of the art of Kathak dance, Charles described it as the most prominent classical dance of Northern India and one which developed in the temples. The word ‘Kathak’ comes from the original Sanskrit word “Kathakar” which means a storyteller.

“Katha kahe so kathik kahave,” which means “one who tells a story is a storyteller.” A woman storyteller was known as “Kathika” and a male storyteller was known as “Kathakar”. They travelled around the country entertaining and educating the people with sacred legends, folklores and mythology. While reciting, they sang, danced and acted. By the 13th century this style had developed its own special features. Charles said that in India, during the Bhakti (devotional) movement, Kathak was greatly influenced by Lord Krishna disciples. By the end of Mogul rule, Kathak dancers evolved Vaishnav philosophy and Radha Krishna Tales became a powerful entertainment in the Mogul Courts.

In Kathak, each syllable is used not only to represent the sounds of feet and bells but to also harmonise with the strokes of accompanying percussion instruments.

Charles sais she wishes to perform in her homeland before continuing her performances in other countries.


Cricket Anyone / Tendulkar v Lara who better?
« on: September 09, 2007, 11:13:59 AM »
Byron Vale says Sachin Tendulkar is top of the cricket tree.

In the real world you wouldn't have to pick between Sachin Tendulkar and Brian Lara. There are six batting positions in any cricket team and you would expect Lara and Tendulkar to fill two of them. In fact, they would probably be the first two names on your sheet.

But where's the fun in that? Sports history is about making the marginal call. About divining the slightest edge that one great player had over the other. It's about convincing yourself and others that you're right.

If we don't take into account the England v India series, there is little to separate the careers of the two most dominant batsmen of their generation.

Lara played 131 Tests, Tendulkar played six more; Tendulkar scored 10,922 Test runs, Lara scored 1031 runs more, Tendulkar averages 55.44, Lara 52.88, Tendulkar scored 37 hundreds, Lara 34, Tedulkar 43 fifties, Lara 48.

In one day cricket, Tendulkar scored 15051 runs to Lara's 10405 but he did play 89 more matches. Their averages are similar: Tendulkar's is 44.13 compared to Lara's 40.48, but astonishingly the Indian has scored 41 one day centuries compared to Lara's 19.

To my mind there are four reasons to pick Tendulkar ahead of Lara.

1. Lara had the advantage of being born left-handed. As the great Sir Garfield Sobers told sportasylum, "bowlers have always had a lot more difficulty bowling to left-handers than right-handers because they bowl so much to right-handers over their career they have got the right line and length so they are thrown when the man is on the other side".

2. Tendulkar played the important innings when it mattered. Yes Lara's 400 is the highest score by a Test batsman, but it came after the West Indies were already 3-0 down in the series and that match ended in a draw. Tendulkar's hundreds have often saved India from a perilous position or taken them into an advantageous one.

3. Tendulkar is a class act. When Lara retired he was rightly lauded but there was also a loud murmur that he could have done more and that his playboy lifestyle had negatively impacted on the team. When Tendulkar retires there will be no such talk.

4. Sir Don Bradman said Tendulkar was the player most like himself, which is good enough for me.

Derek Dyson says Brian Charles Lara was the greatest batsman of his generation.

His unique technique was a cause of wonderment throughout the cricketing world - raised bat, weight forward and eyes low. Like a predator ready to pounce on his prey.

Lara gorged on the Australian bowling attack for his maiden Test century in 1993, reaching a mammoth total of 277.

More was to come in 1994 when in the space of two months Lara set the records for both the highest score in Test and first-class cricket.

He posted 375 against England in St. John's to eclipse the score of his countryman, Sir Garfield Sobers', by 10 runs.

Playing for Warwickshire against Durham later in the year, Lara amassed 501 not out from just 427 balls, a total which included 62 fours and 10 sixes.

However Lara's career was anything but smooth - career highs and lows would come in almost equal measures.

He captained the team on three separate occasions, but never saw eye-to-eye with the West Indies Cricket Board or the selectors.

One high point came in 2004 when Lara led the ODI team to an unlikely win in the final of the ICC Champions Trophy against, you guessed it, England.

At times his own form would desert him, mainly attributable to weight and injury problems, but it is testimony to the indefatigable character of Lara that he always fought back.

At the same time he reclaimed the record score in Test matches with 400 against England in 2004, he became the second player to score two Test triple centuries and the second player to score two career quadruple centuries.

With the standard of West Indies cricket fading over the latter stages of his career, his repeated heroics were often made to merely save-face for his country.

Indeed Lara scored 20% of his teams runs during his career, a feat only surpassed by Don Bradman (23%) and George Headley (21%).

When he retired after a disappointing 2007 World Cup, both personally and for the team, Lara had left a legacy beyond these impressive figures: 11,953 runs in 131 Test matches at 52.88, 10,405 runs in ODI matches.

He was the greatest of his time.

your shout

Click for Video

Jokes / quotes
« on: August 17, 2007, 10:09:01 PM »
Bisexuality immediately doubles your chances for a date on Saturday night.

Rodney Dangerfield

"There are a number of mechanical devices which increase sexual arousal, particularly in women. Chief among these is the Mercedes-Benz 380SL."
Lynn Lavner

"Sex at age 90 is like trying to shoot pool with a rope."Camille Paglia

"Sex is one of the nine reasons for incarnation. The other eight are unimportant."

George Burns

"Women might be able to fake orgasms. But men can fake a whole relationship."Sharon Stone

"Hockey is a sport for white men. Basketball is a sport for black men. Golf is a sport for white men dressed like black pimps."

Tiger Woods

"My mother never saw the irony in calling me a son-of-a-bitch."

Jack Nicholson

"Clinton lied. A man might forget where he parks or where he lives, but he never forgets oral sex, no matter how bad it is."

Barbara Bush (Former US First Lady, and you didn't think
Barbara had a sense of humor)

"Ah, yes, divorce, from the Latin word meaning to rip out a man's genitals through his wallet."

Robin Williams

"Women need a reason to have sex. Men just need a place"

Billy Crystal

"According to a new survey, women say they feel more comfortable undressing in front of men than they do undressing in front of other women. They say that women are too judgmental, where, of course, men are just grateful."

Robert De Niro

"There's a new medical crisis. Doctors are reporting that many men are having allergic reactions to latex condoms. They say they cause severe swelling. So what's the problem?"

Dustin Hoffman

"There's very little advice in men's magazines, because men think, 'I know what I'm doing. Just show me somebody naked !"

Jerry Seinfeld

"See, the problem is that God gives men a brain and a penis, and only enough blood to run one at a time."

Robin Williams

"It's been so long since I've had sex, I've forgotten who ties up whom."

Joan Rivers

"Sex is one of the most wholesome, beautiful and natural experiences money can buy."

Steve Martin

" You don't appreciate a lot of stuff in school until you get older. Little things like being spanked every day by a middle-aged woman. Stuff you pay good money for in later life."

Elmo Phillips

" Bigamy is having one wife too many. Monogamy is the same."

Oscar Wilde

" It isn't premarital sex if you have no intention of getting married."

George Burns

Jokes / The perfect day
« on: August 17, 2007, 05:52:43 PM »

Don't really know what to make of it?
Form you own opinion.

Some of the comments on the video is real kicks such as lastchild01's (3 days ago)

"if u really think about it, what exactly comes from guyana except for limacol ... LOL think about it, yet u all big up like there is no tomorrow "

Entertainment & Culture Discussion / Is this Destra ?
« on: August 12, 2007, 02:36:27 PM »
Is the trini songstress in question Destra?

General Discussion / Question for the cooks?
« on: August 10, 2007, 04:13:56 PM »
Want to cook some geera pork.
But the recipe I have calls for Garam massala
However after scurrying my cupboards all I have is anchar massala.
Any suggestions?

General Discussion / Vandals desecrate Temple by the Sea
« on: August 05, 2007, 08:48:23 AM »

VANDALS desecrated the landmark Sewdass Sadhu Hindu Temple by the Sea in Waterloo, Carapichaima, smashing murtis (depictions of Hindu gods), piling up the pieces in the centre of the temple and attempting to burn them.

The vandals also destroyed carpets, electrical wiring, lights, glass windows and concrete pillars.

The cost to repair the damage and burglar proof the structure is estimated at more than $100,000.

The destruction took place on Friday night after the building was secured by a caretaker.

Randolph Rampersad, president of the temple expressed horror at the damage done to the famous religious site.

“This temple is regarded as a National Treasure to Trinidad and Tobago. It is staggering to think that people living in a civilised society could do something like this and desecrate somebody’s religion.

“This defies logic in a country that is aspiring to achieve 2020 vision.”

The temple, which was rebuilt in 1995 under a committee of which Rampersad was chairman, received assistance from the Unemployment Relief Programme (URP), as well as from overseas.

Rampersad was on a fishing expedition when he received the “disturbing news.” The murtis destroyed were Lord Ganesh, Lord Hanooman, Mother Durga, and Lord Krishna. The only one left standing was Lord Shiva.

The temple is not affiliated to any religious organisations in the country but Sat Maraj, secretary general of the Sanatan Dharma Maha Sabha, expressed concern about the vandalism. “This is a religious tragedy against the Hindu community that could have far-reaching implications. It is a clear case of religious intolerance and it must be investigated thoroughly by the Government and the Ministry of National Security to ensure incidents such as these are not repeated,” he said.


How does this fit into the 2020 vision?

Cricket Anyone / Guyana rip apart Under-19 cricketers
« on: August 02, 2007, 08:50:07 AM »
Guyana rip apart Under-19 cricketers
Thursday, August 2 2007

« prev photo next photo »TRINIDAD and Tobago conceded first innings points to Guyana on the opening day of their round three match in the Trinidad Cement Limited Group Spon-sored West Indies Under-19 Challenge at Warner Park, St Kitts, yesterday.

The Trinidadians were routed for a paltry 82 with only middle order batsman Kevon Cooper showing any application to his batting to topscore with 35.

Guyanese spinner Veersammy Permaul ripped through the Trinidad and Tobago batting lineup claiming four wickets.

He was aided by Muneshwar Patadin and Kellon Carmichael who took two wickets each.

Guyana in reply ended the day on 110 for one wicket with Rajendra Chandrika unbeaten on 52 and Muneshwar Patadin both not out 51.

The Guyanese with an overall lead of 28 runs would be looking to extend their advantage today in the hope of completing an outright victory.

TT manager Narsingh Rambarran said his team batted badly from the captain Adrian Barath right down to the last man and in the end were totally ashamed of their performance.

“All the big stars in the team batted badly despite the coach and myself trying very hard with them.

“It was really a horrible day of cricket by us and the management staff is really upset by this display,” Rambarran added.

Summarised scores: TRINIDAD & TOBAGO 82 — Kevon Cooper 35, Veerasammy Permaul 4/20, Muneshwar Patadin 2/15, Kellon Carmichael 2/18 vs GUYANA 110/1 — Rajendra Chandrika 52 not out, Muneshwar Patadin 51 not out

JAMAICA 203/3 — Andre Creary 75 not out, Shacoya Thomas 73, Christie Jones 36, Amal Nurse 2/37 vs BARBADOS

LEEWARDS 185 — Moreland Le Blanc 75 not out, Hayden Walsh 35, Sherwin Peters 33, Dawnley Grant 4/33, Delorn Johnson 2/18, Mike Naraine 2/37, Alton Audain 2/58.

Such lovely words of encouragement.
Making sure to seperate himself from the blame.


General Discussion / More Money for MPs
« on: July 25, 2007, 07:30:15 AM »
By RIA TAITT Wednesday, July 25 2007

‘It means that former MPs, such as Ralph Maraj and Ramesh Lawrence Maharaj, would receive, at age 55, a gratuity of 10 percent of their gross salary.’

Once again, the financial perks of all members of Parliament (MPs) have been greatly enhanced.

An amendment to the Retiring Allowances (Legislative Service) Act which was quietly, quickly and unanimously passed in the House of Representatives last Friday, doubles the gratuity payment to which each MP would be entitled.

MPs receive a gratuity and a pension at the end of their service. The gratuity is a lump sum, and it has now been increased from ten percent of the gross salary received over the period of parliamentary service to 20 per cent.

Furthermore, the amendment passed on Friday removes the cap which had been placed on the sum of the gratuity that any MP could receive. Previously the quantum could not exceed the equivalent of three years salary.

Now there is no ceiling. Whatever the 20 percent of the gross salary of the MP comes up to — even if it amounts to $1M — then the MP is entitled to receive that. A minister currently receives around $30,000, which means that after one term he would be entitled around $360,000 in gratuity. Most MPs have served at least two full (five-year) terms, with veterans like Ken Valley and Keith Rowley serving more time.

At the time most of the MPs entered in 1991 and 1995, a ministerial salary was an estimated $12,000 to $15,000 monthly which would mean that the 20 per cent gratuity computed for the early periods of service would be smaller. But for those who served longer in the Parliament, their overall gratuity would be higher.

The measure however would not apply to the two longest serving MPs — Basdeo Panday or Patrick Manning — who receive prime ministerial pensions. The amendment was tabled as an Amendment to the Finance Act, which contained amendments to about 12 different pieces of legislation. While the Salaries Review Commission (SRC) determines salaries and all prerequisites such as travelling and housing, pensions fall under the Retiring Allowance Act.
The Parliament had previously sought the advice of the SRC when it sent recommendations of the House Committee for improved pension benefits to the SRC some three years ago.

The SRC rejected some of its recommendations, but agreed to an increase in gratuity which it said could only take effect after October 17, 2002 — the start of this parliamentary term. The report made it clear that any service before October 2002 did not count. What the House did on Friday was to remove this limitation and made the increased gratuity retroactive. Senators are not considered legislators and would not enjoy this benefit.
Both the Government and the Opposition agreed the benefit should only apply to current and future legislators. Therefore the amendment stated that “Section 81 of the Retiring Allowances (Legislative Act) is effective in relation to a person serving as a legislator from October 17, 2002 or thereafter.”

It means that former MPs, such as Ralph Maraj and Ramesh Lawrence Maharaj, would receive, at age 55, a gratuity of 10 per cent of their gross salary.

quietly, quickly and unanimously it is always good to note how clandestine the democratic process works when it comes to lining the pockets of the MPs. Proving the age old adage "a rose by any other name would smell just as sweet" IE a Trinidadian politician no matter party affiliation will always be a Trinidadian politician and ultimately screw the nation to line their pockets..

You have to wonder what stupidness they will publish next. Trinidad's newspapers are no more than tabloids.

Hindus under attack in TT[/color]
By Leiselle Maraj Friday, July 13 2007

The Hindu American Foundation (HAF) has listed Trinidad and Tobago among ten countries in the world which abuse Hindus’ human rights in its third annual Hindu human rights report for 2006 published on Wednesday.

The HAF is a non-profit, non-partisan human rights group, “promoting the Hindu and American ideals of understanding, tolerance and pluralism,” according to the foundation’s website.

The report, “Hindus in South Asia and the Diaspora: A survey of Human Rights 2006,” listed ten countries and one state in India where Hindus constitute a minority: Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Bhutan, Fiji, the Indian state of Jammu and Kashmir, Kazakhstan, Malaysia, Pakistan, Saudi Arabia, Sri Lanka and Trinidad and Tobago.

Notice of the report’s existence came from a release from HAF Executive Director, Ishani Chowdhury, sent to Newsday by Radio Jaagriti CEO Devant Maharaj. Within this release HAF executive council member and the report’s primary author, Ramesh Rao stated the countries were not “rank-ordered in terms of level of discrimination and human rights abuse” and their listing did not mean that each was an abuser of human rights “to the same extent.”

Its summary stated that “racial and religious animosity between Afro-Caribbean and Indo- Caribbean (people) has been exacerbated over the years.

“Indo-Trinidadians have been systematically denied government benefits and employment in government service. The police have too often ignored attacks on Hindu-Trinidadians.”

Almost seven pages of the 200-plus page report are dedicated to detailing instances where the human rights of Hindu-Trinidadians have been abused.

It stated that contrary to the Constitution, Hindus in Trinidad and Tobago “experience discrimination and violation of their human rights in religion, culture, politics, economics, education, employment, housing, and health.”

“Worse yet, Hindus and Indians are targeted by organised gangs of kidnappers and murderers.”

The report also stated that Hindus were not allowed equivalent sums of money to organise religious and cultural event, as given to Christian groups and are sometimes not allowed outright to hold such events.

The report claims that “the People’s National Movement ruled for 30 consecutive years without appointing a single Hindu as a government minister. The cry of rural neglect, alienation, marginalisation and discrimination affected the political psychology of Indians as they lost hope of ever winning a general election.”

It cited the Trinity Cross issue where a new name and symbol for the nation’s highest award is yet to be commissioned and the seven-year legal struggle by Sanatan Dharma Maha Sabha Secretary General, Satnarayan Maharaj for a radio broadcast license. Maharaj told Newsday yesterday, he read the report and said that Hindu discrimination in TT “ is not an invention but a fact of life which we see happening all around us.”

“A number of US congressmen are alerted to the fact that Trinidad and Tobago discriminate against Hindus. There is no question that this report is accurate as it is on court record that the Hindu community was discriminated against in the radio license case.”

HAF recommended that the United States should encourage the TT Government to abide by the Constitution and guarantee safety and security to Hindus and Indo-Trinidadians.

And the sensationalism of the front page

Pupil, 9, attempts suicide

Richard Charan South Bureau

Friday, June 15th 2007
 A nine-year-old girl who drank poison from a bottle while at school was in a stable condition last night at the Mt Hope Children's Hospital.

The grandmother with whom she lives was questioned by police earlier in the day.

The Education Ministry is working with police investigators on the case, said the ministry's communications specialist Mervyn Crichlow.

The girl is a standard two pupil of the Mammoral Roman Catholic Primary School, a rural village east of Chaguanas.

The incident is said to have happened at class on Wednesday.

Police intend speaking with the parents of the child, who shortly after drinking the weedicide, told friends what she had done before the lunch break.

Classmates reported the incident to the school's principal who called paramedics and police.

Crichlow said: "The student is alleged to have brought some liquid into the school and drank some of it. The principal contacted the EHS, the police, the school supervisor and the grandmother."

Crichlow said the reason for the girl's suicide attempt was unknown.

The incident was the latest in a number of suicidal behaviour by school children in the past year.

Last September, six pupils of the Princes Town Junior Secondary School were taken to hospital after inhaling an insecticide brought to school by a boy who police said planned to drink it.

A month later, a 16-year-old boy hanged himself from a cell at the Family Court in Port of Spain, and a 15-year-old drank poison after meeting her probation officer. She survived.


Little girl with dark secrets

...drinks poison in school

Richard Charan rcharan@trinidadexpress.com

Monday, June 18th 2007
 The little girl who poisoned herself at school while her friends watched was a bright child with dark secrets, relatives and neighbours in her village said yesterday.

The nine-year-old walked a mile to school. Neighbours said the girl would be walked to and from school by an older brother holding a stick. She lives with her grandmother and 12-year-old brother, in the rotted room of a building used to dry cocoa.

Her mother left her behind when she was two years old, to start a new life outside the rural village of Mamoral No 2, 10 miles east of Chaguanas.

Her father is not known to villagers. The only money the family has comes from a public assistance grant.

The girl is a standard two pupil at a primary school.

The school's parent-teacher association president asked yesterday that the State's social services "intervene because this is a terrible, sad thing that has happened. And this girl and her family needs counselling and long-term help".

The girl, who many described as sad and reclusive, is a patient of the Mt Hope Paediatric Hospital. She was taken there last Wednesday afternoon by paramedics.

The girl was visited at hospital by teachers.

Yesterday, her grandmother said she was doing better.

The grandmother said the girl drank the poison because she was often beaten and tormented by bullies at her school.

She said the girl's brother would walk her to and from school to protect him her beatings.

Villagers said the girl was a victim of domestic abuse and was encouraged to take the poison.

Her classmates told their parents that the girl brought the weedicide to school in a vial, and mixed it with a soft drink.

According to a child who witnessed it "she laughed and told us she going to kill herself. I going to drink Gramoxone. She walked to the classroom door and and drank it."

The school's PTA president, said though the school's enrolment was small "no one knew the girl was was having problems. She always seemed friendly. This is troubling to us".

She added: "The girl never went to church or temple. she seldom left the village to go to cinema or mall shopping."

The girl is said to have run away from home in the past but was disciplined and taken back to the cocoa house, after her mother refused to take her in.

General Discussion / Illinois Students Lose Diplomas Over Cheers
« on: June 02, 2007, 09:31:14 AM »
GALESBURG, Illinois (June 2) - Caisha Gayles graduated with honors last month, but she is still waiting for her diploma. The reason: the whoops of joy from the audience as she crossed the stage.

Gayles was one of five students denied diplomas from the lone public high school in Galesburg after enthusiastic friends or family members cheered for them during commencement.

About a month before the May 27 ceremony, Galesburg High students and their parents had to sign a contract promising to act in dignified way. Violators were warned they could be denied their diplomas and barred from the after-graduation party.

Many schools across the country ask spectators to hold applause and cheers until the end of graduation. But few of them enforce the policy with what some in Galesburg say are strong-arm tactics.

In Galesburg, the issue has taken on added controversy with accusations that the students were targeted because of their race: four are black and one is Hispanic. Parents say cheers also erupted for white students, and none of them was denied a diploma.

"It was like one of the worst days of my life," said Gayles, who had a 3.4 grade-point average and officially graduated, but does not have the keepsake diploma to hang on her wall. "You walk across the stage and then you can't get your diploma because of other people cheering for you. It was devastating, actually."

School officials in Galesburg, a working-class town of 34,000 that is still reeling from the 2004 shutdown of a 1,600-employee refrigerator factory, said the get-tough policy followed a 2005 commencement where hoots, hollers and even air horns drowned out much of the ceremony and nearly touched off fights in the audience when the unruly were asked to quiet down.

"Lots of parents complained that they could not hear their own child's name called," said Joel Estes, Galesburg's assistant superintendent. "And I think that led us to saying we have to do something about this to restore some dignity and honor to the ceremony so that everyone can appreciate it and enjoy it."

In Indianapolis, public school officials this year started kicking out parents and relatives who cheer. At one school, the superintendent interrupted last month's graduation to order police to remove a woman from the gymnasium.

It's an important, solemn occasion. There's plenty of time for celebration before and after," said Clarke Campbell, president of the Indianapolis school board.

Principal Tom Chiles said administrators who monitored the more than 2,000-seat auditorium reported only disruptions they considered "significant," and all turned in the same five names.

"Race had absolutely nothing to do with it whatsoever," Chiles said. "It is the amount of disruption at the time of the incident."

School officials said they will hear students and parents out if they appeal. Meanwhile, the school said the five students can still get their diplomas by completing eight hours of public service work, answering phones, sorting books or doing other chores for the district, situated about 150 miles southwest of Chicago.

Gayles' mother said she plans to fight the school board - in court if necessary - to get her daughter's diploma. The noise "was like three seconds. It was like, `Yay,' and that was it," Carolyn Gayles said.

American Civil Liberties Union spokesman Edward Yohnka said Galesburg's policy raises no red flags as long as it is enforced equitably. "It's probably well within the school's ability to control the decorum at an event like this," he said.

Another student who was denied her diploma, Nadia Trent, said she will probably let the school keep it if her appeals fail.

"It's not fair. Somebody could not like me and just decide to yell to get me in trouble. I can't control everyone, just the ones I gave tickets to," Trent said.

General Discussion / MY reflections
« on: May 28, 2007, 07:28:54 PM »
Been monitoring the board to see if any one will raise the issue on the PM decision to reopen the case against the CJ. This honestly reek as tit for tat The CJ moved to take the honourable PM to the Privy council so so the Pm retaliate by opening the Case to impeach the PM . But I question the ability of the state to win its case giving that its main witness is very tainted.

I am for one disenfranchised by our present politicians but come time to vote I will vote based on what I believed even if some may say I am essentially throwing away my vote. Following with the example of Mr Charles Roach I will have stood by my principles.

To error is human
Evil happens when good men do nothing

General Discussion / Steel Pan
« on: May 18, 2007, 04:19:48 PM »


I wish I could play, to the the pan players out there how hard is it to learn?

General Discussion / Trini sweet drink is UK history
« on: April 20, 2007, 02:38:21 PM »
Warning Has nothing to do with Race or Politics

Vanished UK drink is toast of Caribbean
By Robert Plummer
Business reporter, BBC News 

Corona limeade. Idris lemon squash. Top Deck shandy. Strawberry-flavoured Cresta.

Peardrax and Cydrax live on, far from their Devonshire origins 

If you spent your childhood in the UK in the 1960s and 1970s, these and many other soft-drink brands of the era will immediately summon up a great frothy wave of nostalgia.

Of course, those dimly-remembered beverages that used to be staples of the supermarket and corner shop have long since disappeared.

But one such drink has lived on, becoming far more popular in the Caribbean than it ever was in its country of origin.

Pear-flavoured fizzy drink Peardrax, along with its apple-based counterpart Cydrax, is still made under licence in Trinidad, nearly 20 years after being taken off UK shelves because of falling sales.

Trini test

Despite the fact that pears are not native to the region, Trinidadians and Tobagonians now see the drink as a defining part of the culture of their twin-island republic.

One website, TnTisland.com, features a "True Trini Test" including a preference for Peardrax or Cydrax over Pepsi or Coca-Cola as a sign that "yuh know yuh is a real Trini".

Fermented pears give Peardrax its distinctive taste

And Peardrax is a big seller for businesses catering to expat Trinis around the world.

"It's most important during Christmas," says US-based Trinidadian Randall Romero, who runs an international shop online called Trinifood.com.

"I know that as a child growing up, that was the main time you drank Peardrax. During Christmas, I would say the Peardrax sale more than doubles - I sell about 100 cases at that time.

"Cydrax, we don't sell so much, but Peardrax is popular because it has a unique taste. It's the slightly fermented pears that they use - you don't get that from any other drink. It's very good with Scotch."

Cider house rules

It's all a far cry from the origins of Peardrax, which began as a sideline for now-defunct West Country cider firm Whiteway's.

The company was founded in the East Devon village of Whimple in the 19th Century, but by 1968 it was part of the Allied Breweries conglomerate.

Whiteway's parent company kept on expanding, buying food manufacturer J Lyons in 1978 and renaming itself Allied-Lyons three years later.

But Peardrax and Cydrax were in terminal decline in the UK and were finally withdrawn from the domestic market in 1988.

Allied-Lyons went on to become Allied Domecq, which was eventually bought by Pernod Ricard in 2005.

Constellation Brands also has wine, beer and spirits brands

In the meantime, although Whiteway's product range had disappeared from British shops, control of its brands passed from hand to hand in a series of deals, as the UK cider industry underwent a long and complicated restructuring.

Since 2004, they have been owned by Gaymer Cider Company, part of the European arm of US drinks group Constellation Brands.

Gaymer, the UK's second-biggest cider maker, is best known for its Blackthorn, Olde English and Diamond White brands.

But it continues to receive royalties from sales of Peardrax and Cydrax in Trinidad, where they are produced by the Pepsi-Cola Trinidad Bottling Company.

Wedding toast

Not everyone in Britain of a certain age remembers Peardrax with fondness.

Caustic commentator Victor Lewis-Smith, for one, recalls it as "a foul, resinous, cloying, sweet beverage" without even the "saving grace" of inducing drunkenness.

But in the Caribbean, as a spokesman for Gaymer says, it is seen as "a more sophisticated drink" that can even be served at weddings to toast the health of the bride and groom.

Robert Opie is an expert on the history of brands

Robert Opie, director of London's Museum of Brands, Packaging and Advertising, says Peardrax is one of many brands that have died out in their home market, but still enjoy success elsewhere.

"Lifebuoy soap, for instance, disappeared here about 15 years ago, but it's still thriving in places like India," he says.

Mr Opie is unsurprised by the fact that people in Trinidad and Tobago have forgotten about the English origins of Peardrax, perceiving it as a local product.

"The ownership of brands is fascinating. We all tend to think that our favourite brands come from our country.

"Heinz or Kellogg's we tend to think of as British, but they're not - they're American. People have forgotten that Shredded Wheat came to this country from the US.

"We grow up to love these things and we tend to think of them as belonging to our country, but they don't."


General Discussion / 1971 Elections
« on: January 28, 2007, 12:03:27 PM »
On today express there is a statement that the PNM won all the seats in the 1971 elections. I am curious to know if we had an opposition in Parliament and if so how were they chosen, and if they had any voting power at all.

Caribbean migrants face health risks

Third generation Black Caribbean immigrant men and women face the highest rates of psychiatric disorders.

A new study suggests that black Caribbean Black men in the US have higher risks for psychiatric disorders than African-American males.
The study also indicates that the longer Caribbean immigrants stay in the US, the poorer their mental health becomes.

The research examined the prevalence of psychiatric disorders among Black individuals in the U.S.

The results appear in the January issue of the American Journal of Public Health.

The lead author of the study was David Williams, a St. Lucian-born professor in the Department of Society, Human Development and Health at the Harvard School of Public Health.

He said that Caribbean immigrants generally do better in health than US-born counterparts of Caribbean ancestry.

"Disadvantaged Group"

Williams told BBC Caribbean: "But as years in the United States increase, their health gets worse."

It didn't get any better for their children and grandchildren.

 Of all Black immigrants, those of Caribbean descent are the largest subgroup, making up 4.4.% of the US Black population. 

"In fact the single most disadvantaged group in our study would be third generation Caribbean immigrants where nearly half of them meet criteria for a major psychiatric disorder at some point in their lifetime."

Williams said researchers would have to follow-up whether this was caused by the exposure to "blatant and insidious racism" and other stresses linked to acculturation and assimilation.

The researchers found that Black men of Caribbean ancestry had higher current rates of mood and anxiety disorders than African American men.

Women of Caribbean ancestry, however, had lower current and lifetime rates than African American women.


The researchers examined data from the National Study of American Life, the largest study of mental health among Blacks in the US.

Six percent of the US Black population is foreign-born and 10% is of foreign ancestry.


General Discussion / Blame the adults
« on: January 11, 2007, 09:44:26 PM »

General Discussion / Christmas toys for all age groups
« on: December 10, 2006, 03:21:22 PM »


Yes, the toy requires two AAA batteries

General Discussion / DOUGLA BREAD
« on: December 06, 2006, 09:33:14 AM »


A popular bakery in Diego Martin is seeking to ‘douglarise’ the meals of Trinis with a new type of bread it is offering for sale and which it is calling the ‘Dougla Bread’. The loaf is made of 50 percent whole wheat and 50 percent white flour - true unity in loaf. PHOTO BY VASHTI SINGH

General Discussion / Churchgoers sprayed with insecticide
« on: October 17, 2006, 08:22:09 AM »
Churchgoers sprayed with insecticide

Richard Charan South Bureau

Trinidad Express Tuesday, October 17th 2006

 SIX worshippers in a church at Couva were taken to hospital on Sunday night, after angry neighbours sprayed the congregation with an insecticide, trying to silence their songs of praise.

Two brothers who police said used a mist blower to pump a mixture of Gramaxone and Lanate on churchgoers at the Endurance Ministries Church, will appear in court today.

They are charged with the spraying of a noxious substance.

The attack happened at nightfall during the Sunday night service at the home of member Julie Logan.

For several weeks, neighbours were said to have tried stopping the service because of the "holy noise".

On Sunday evening, after cursing and threats, a family allegedly sprayed the poison over a wall.

The congregation of 40 people, including Pastor Ishmael Khan, ran to the road.

Several reportedly fainted.

Six ambulances were called to the area.

Six people were treated at the Couva District Hospital.

They were discharged early yesterday

Jokes / Do you have any standards, NO well
« on: June 21, 2006, 10:18:46 PM »

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