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We must know where we are


We must know where we are

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DURING THE 2015 Leo Leacock Memorial Lecture, Sir Hilary Beckles likened the prevailing conditions in Barbados to a sailboat floating on the high seas that appeared to be waiting for the wind to blow so that it could move along its intended course.

He further posited that waiting on the wind was not what one would expect from a good captain and his crew and he argued that in the absence of the wind it was incumbent that they dug deep into their innovative capacity and collectively find ways to get the boat moving. It would appear that if Barbados remains in a vacillating holding pattern while using up scarce resources, we are not likely to feel any significant amounts of relief given the predictable spin-offs.

According to Nathaniel Branden, “the first step toward change is awareness, the second step is acceptance” and so I often wonder if we are actually aware of our real economic circumstances or if indeed we have been made aware. I should like to suggest that we take careful note of former prime minister Owen Arthur’s assertions that Barbados’ economy is in the intensive care unit at the moment, as opposed to passing it off as rhetoric or stupid noise. Too many commentators, both in the local environment and those within the international community, have been making similar posits over the years.

According to Michael J. Fox: “Acceptance doesn’t mean resignation; it means understanding that something is what it is and that there’s got to be a way through it.” I have learnt that acceptance is essential when determining exactly where we are in life and hence should serve as a useful starting point from which we can chart the way forward.

Let us therefore agitate that we be provided with accurate data as it pertains to our economic status. Let us also come together as co-inhabitants on this boat we call Barbados to work together to determine the best possible ways to get it moving.

Any seaman worth his salt will tell you that knowing where you are on the high seas is critical because you know where to point to in order to get home and therefore I shall like to urge all ministers and parliamentarians alike, to take note that it is time that the people of Barbados know exactly where we are in relation to our economic circumstances so that we can all agree on where this ship should be headed.