Letter: Burn the box


Dear Sir:

Once you get used to thinking outside the box, you soon realize that you do not need the box anymore. You can burn the box. The mere existence of the box as a cozy and inviting instrument of suppression beckons you to return to it like an early morning warm bed and prohibits man’s natural quest for getting off his ass, establishing new battlefronts and conquering new frontiers.


The so called Committee put together to formulate what our world would be like in the year 2030 represents a comfortable arrangement between government and a collection of burnt out creatures who at best should be put out to pasture.

At this point I pause to point out that 97% of the persons on the Committee are my friends and they will remain so but I am forced to point out to them that they should not attempt to impose their outdated, failed policies and ideas on the upcoming generation. They need to step away from it all and listen very carefully to what the young people want and only to provide limited guidance along the way.

One of my good friends on the committee has written the same strategic plan for various organizations over the past 30 years simply by altering up the date and the name of the organization. Another friend of mine was forced to remind a meeting recently that the matter they were discussing was the same matter under discussion when the airplanes rammed the World Trade Center on 9/11.

In 1997, in my capacity as Accountant General, I served on a Cabinet committee chaired by Sir Paul Scoon (deceased), former governor general of Grenada, for 18 months during which we presented to Cabinet a set of comprehensive proposals for addressing the complaints of persons affected by the Pensions (Disqualification) Act 1983. Recently the government of Grenada announced its intention to form a committee to look into this very matter.

During that same period we commenced a program for the elimination of the need for pensioners to submit life certificates. We moved the requirement from monthly to bi-annually with a view to total elimination. To date no one has moved beyond that step. All that is required is a monthly comparison of the deaths register with the list of pensioners prior to the preparation of the payments.

Probably the two most disturbing things about the 2030 Committee are:

1. The collection of old farts who think they can decide on young people’s future without including them; and

2. The pile of useless documents that they have amassed in a hope to draw ideas from in their effort to formulate the plan.

Problem one is easy to solve, simply fire 70 percent of the current members of the team and replace them with persons who are under 35 years old.

It must be a figment of their imagination that persons who are either retired or on the verge of retirement are coming together to hatch a plan for the future of young people without having them play an integral part in their own development.

There is no doubt that their time would be better spent in the pursuit of a solid pension fund or a luxurious retirement home with a quarter-acre lawn, a walk-in swimming pool and an amalgamation of tropical flowers. Only the youth can save themselves. At this point, whether they accept it or not, most of people on the committee have lived their full lives and must now give way.

The second problem requires some historical analysis to illustrate why the collection of documents that the Committee is referencing are all useless and should be placed in a pile and burnt to the ground.

For this analysis we will start in 1984. Why 1984? Below is a summary of the economic strategies pursued at different points and the result obtained. It is the view of this writer that an analysis of the prior period would not change the price of salt-fish after accounting for the difference in the method of governance and the lack of empirical data.

Period 1984 – 1990

Economic Strategy: Caribbean Basin Initiative
Financing: Budgetary Support
Debt Level: Negligible
Result: Economic Growth

Period 1990 – 1995

Economic Strategy: Structural Adjustment
Financing: Balance Budget
Debt Level: Minimal
Result: Economic Decline

Period 1995 – 2000

Economic Strategy: Foreign Direct Investment, Tax Reduction
Financing: Budgetary Savings
Debt Level: Minimal
Result: Strong Economic Growth

Period 2000 – 2008

Economic Strategy: Heavy Borrowing
Financing: Budgetary Deficit
Debt Level: Unsustainable
Result: Economic Collapse

Period 2008 – 2013

Economic Strategy: Debt Servicing

Financing: Budget Deficit
Debt Level: Unsustainable
Result: Economic Recession

Period 2013 – 2015

Economic Strategy: Economic Hardship
Financing: Budget Deficit
Debt Level: Unsustainable
Result: Economic Depression

Period 2015 onwards

Economic Strategy: Innovation, Production and Happiness (in that order)
Financing: Budget Surplus
Debt Level: Debt Reduction
Result: Sustained Economic Growth

Therefore there is no relationship between the failed strategies of the past 30 years and what has to be done for the next 20 years. For this reason the strategic plans prior to now must be ignored since they are responsible for getting us into the current quagmire.

To wrap up there are really two steps required to be taken by the controllers of the Strategic Planning Committee at this point. Step one involves replacing 70 percent of the current committee members with persons under 35 years old and Step two requires burning all the current reference documents and starting the task ahead with a clean sheet of paper.

Garvey Louison



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