Friday, September 16, 2011

Whither Guyana?

Half-sleep to hear a Mr Kishore from Singapore enthusiastically extolling virtues of said country and why Asia has surpassed the West and will continue to do so! Chief amongst the reasons for Singapore's success is their scrupulous adherence to the Rules - ensuring that businesses will feel comfortable that they will not be 'ripped off'  by underhand practices.  Sort of harkening back to the days when a man's word was his bond, a Handshake was better than a written contract etc.   It made me remember a conversation on a return flight to Guyana with a Surinamese who was in the fishing industry, who said without Law and Order nothing will 'work' and that was a main difference between Guyana and Surinam --- mmm wonder if that's still applicable under Bouterese?

Understandably in a 'small society' where inevitably someone 'knows' someone the Laws are very rarely enforced so woe betide the poor sucker who doesn't go through the 'usual' - they have the full force of the Law on their heads but knowing others are not so penalised has a tendency of rubbing salt in the wounds!

So Singapore's emphasis in investing in their people, having a National strategy and being one of the most strict countries in the world in enforcing rules- to the point of being anal about it seems to be paying off?
And we-- our investment seems to be a bit half-baked, not having a plan for the returning students, the sneaking suspicion that the coveted scholarships to the ABC countries are reserved for the 'new elites', having cushy jobs reserved for them, like an MBA gained while in full employment in the Government, no doubt at the country's expense so justifying a Minister's position but questionable about completion of High School.  So the fact that they have the narcissistic drive to reach the top - does this mean they are the best people to think on behalf of the rest of us? Yes-- large concrete monstrosities have sprung up but is it progress to completely change the face of a beautifully laid out Colonial city? To use social services to keep the masses beholden and dependent?

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