Christie’s Credibility Collapses: PLP Now in Freefall
This was a historic moment, but not for the reason Christie might wish Bahamians to believe. It was historic as a piece of grand political theatre that will enter the history books as a masquerade and monumental failure by the government, a failure that will help to define Christie’s legacy.
The government said that it paid nothing for what they got in the new BTC deal. That is most fitting as it got little to next to nothing more than the original deal.
Never mind the doublespeak, the technical gobbledygook, the evasions, the farcical spin, the bluster; Christie failed to achieve what he emphatically promised in a statement at Gambier House on March 27, 2011:
“I renew the pledge here this afternoon that when we become the government again, the PLP will regain the majority shareholding of BTC and return its control to the Bahamian people.”
Today, C&W remains the majority shareholder and in control of BTC. Those are the facts, no matter the government’s attempts at artful dodging, obfuscation and smoke-and-mirrors, a term referring to “where magicians make objects appear or disappear by extending or retracting mirrors amid a distracting burst of smoke.”
Recall the harsh language and insults Christie and others hurled at the deal with C&W, some calling the company unworthy, one of the nicer words used. Now they claim they never wanted management control and that C&W are so wonderful.
The notion that the PLP is making the best of the FNM’s deal is a canard. They have basically ratified what the Ingraham administrated negotiated.
After returning to office Christie indicated that they would not go ahead with the FNM’s plan to sell nine percent of BTC shares to Bahamians. Now the government has flip-flopped, saying that it will, yet another ratification.
There was the spectacle of Christie and a coterie of wizardly advisers, including Franklyn Wilson, having to so spectacularly backtrack with a new shuffle cum song-and-dance after some demonized C&W in the strongest possible terms.
In terms of the new BTC Foundation is it the case that though the government may create the Foundation that the shares remain the property of and in the name of C&W, even though the proceeds from the almost two percent of the shares are used for Bahamian community projects?
When the Foundation is created the public should be allowed to see the terms and conditions or articles of incorporation, whichever is pertinent.
It wasn’t only FNMs who mocked what Christie had for some weeks prior bragged of as a “big” announcement that turned out to be a minor or small accomplishment after all.
Embarrassing for the government was the scorn poured on the illusion of a “big” deal by nonaligned voters, by union officials, by PLPs, by the media, by commentators, by the business community, by those who believed the PLP’s propaganda of getting back BTC – basically by the nation at large.
There is a classic aphorism of what a dictator fears most: A drunk stumbling out of pub with a quip that shatters the pretensions of the dictator.
Likewise, in a democracy: Politicians fear mockery, the type of humor that penetrates thick skins, armor and veils, revealing the gaps and gulfs between what a politician claims and what people see or experience.
Such a shattering and historic moment for the Christie administration arrived last week, when, with giggles to guffaws, and titters and snickers to howls, Bahamians generally laughed at the claims made by the government of the BTC deal.
BTC, corruption, government, incompetence, PLP