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THE LOWDOWN: Getting it in


SHERRYLYN CLARKE, [email protected]

THE LOWDOWN: Getting it in

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“These are the times that try men’s souls”, claimed American patriot Thomas Paine. In our case, that may well be “try men’s soles” for lawyer Bobby Clarke has Bajans marching.
?In Shakespeare’s Julius Caesar, a cobbler admits to leading a throng on a similar march “to wear out their shoes, to get myself into more work”. “Comissiong and Clarke, half-soles, whole soles, ace soles, all kinds of soles” could be a future venture.
Thomas P was objecting to a tax. And he pitched it strong: “The summer soldier and the sunshine patriot will, in this crisis, shrink from the service of their country, but he that stands by it now, deserves the love and thanks of man and woman.”
Not sure if I’m summer soldier or sunshine patriot but I can’t get worked up over this municipal solid waste tax.
Taxes are about getting it in – money, that is. I’m surprised that Peter Laurie, who, like me, worked for Government, would expect that the name of a tax has anything to do with where the takings are spent. And, in my opinion, the VAT tax which was slipped past our guard with hardly a murmur is just as “iniquitous” and “nefarious”, not to mention “insidious”.
??Still waiting
??VAT doesn’t discriminate between the items used by rich or poor. That is wicked. It takes far more revenue out of our pockets than the taxes it replaced. And it’s insidious because many middlemen who were supposed to get the VAT refunded are still waiting like Al Barrack.
If I spend $748 on milk bottles, I pay $131 in VAT on top of that. I buy $638 in Harris paint, I pay $111 extra in VAT. My solid waste tax is $600 and change. I probably pay more VAT than that in a month.
Like everyone else, I wish my taxes were put to productive use. But as long as both parties, according to Peter Wickham, subscribe to that socialist claptrap – “from each according to his ability, to each according to his needs” – the general populace will make sure it has many pressing needs while exhibiting minimum ability to contribute. And the productive minority will subsidise the slackers.
Which isn’t the note I intended to hit today. Far from it, I’ve been living high on (or off) the hog. Went to a party at a Royal Westmoreland villa. Shanique should come and see the “timber houses and zinc fences” they have down there.
At another party last Saturday night, Dean Emeritus Harold Critchlow was hitting a mean Mary Had A Little Lamb on pan, tutored, I am told, by an original Grenada revolutionary.
Barbados is just sweet. Wife had a flat tyre up by Cottage. Phoned Carl Power. Within minutes, two helpers arrived plus a postman my wife used to drop to school in his youth. Better yet, Carl’s niece came visiting this weekend. Oo-la-la for days. And Egbert Maloney brought me a big, juicy melon from all up Chancery Lane.
Anyhow, I have an idea for this recession. Bajeball.
I realise women watch football for one reason: to see the men take off their shirts after the game. My womenfolk went gaga at a NATION picture of the French goalie in his briefs. To them the game is just so much foreplay.
And, in my wife’s opinion, “if 22 men can’t get it in once in an hour and a half, something is very wrong”.
??Big league
??So let’s spice it up. Teams half and half, men and women. Every time a goal is scored, each member of the scored-against team must shed an article of clothing. Big league, exclusive to Barbados. Players from all over. Worldwide TV rights. Full details later.
Last thing, Veoma has admitted she’s the duck stalking my farm. That duck is weird. It’s now taking midnight flights over my field. If it ever swoops past while I’m up there, Bolt’s records are going to be history.
She also apparently got a “ducking” while illegally using Vic Fernandes’ private washroom. Imagine the scene: VA standing, just having dropped slacks and undies down around ankles. VF exits shower, stark born naked.
“Oh Lord, a monster!” shrieks Veo. “Rrrr-oar!” goes Vic.
If we get a mate for this duck we’ll call him “Vic”. No need for shock and roar a second time around.
*Richard Hoad is a farmer and social commentator.
Email: [email protected]

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