Our neighbour Venezuela and our own Tobago both remain in the news. The outcomes of their politics and ours will affect our quests for Dragon gas and ‘brands’ hotel rooms respectively.
Common sense will have already told readers, even though we must try, how little influence Trinidad and Tobago and the rest of Caricom is likely to exert now that control of Venezuela is up for grabs.
Meanwhile, we now know that the proposed entry of Sandals into Tobago began with a dinner party at a private residence attended by the Prime Minister.
With respect to the powerful personalities who were involved in that dinner, their expectations that they could cede a valuable piece of Tobago by means of a private dinner party and to proceed without dissenting opinions was an expectation belonging to earlier centuries when imperialism was unchallenged.
Even though we pray that war will not be fought over it, the eventual carving up of Venezuela is way beyond our influence. In contrast, even before we knew of the dinner party origins of Sandals proposed entry into Tobago, we have rightly insisted that we should have a critical influence in how Tobago should be developed, by whom and on what terms. Both privately and publicly I have expressed concern at the authoritarian response of the Government and its backers.
There are many examples in history of imperialist acts of great powers, disposing of territories, both within and outside of Europe, by treaty. Some of these may be of interest to readers.
Famously one such territory, in the vicinity of what was then Czechoslovakia, was the Sudetenland taken from Germany by the treaties concluded after the First World War, of which the Treaty of Versailles is the best known.
It is well established that German resentment of this and other indignities suffered after defeat in that war was one of the triggers of German aggression that led to the Second World War.
Tobago is not currently a spoil of war, but, ironically, if it is to be traded off again, Tobago does also have a significant history of being previously traded off. We were taught in school that Tobago changed hands frequently, being a prize because of its significant and profitable exports of sugar and other agricultural products.
After changing hands 31 times, Tobago was ceded to Britain in 1841 by the Treaty of Paris. By then, wars over the island between British, French and Dutch colonists and the collapse of its sugar industry had reduced its worth.
Earlier in that nineteenth century, during negotiations for the Treaty of Amiens, ownership of Trinidad, Tobago, British Guiana (now Guyana), Dutch Guiana (now Suriname) and French Guiana were in play together with Ceylon (now Sri Lanka), and Cape Colony in South Africa.
Hamid Ghany—in last Sunday’s Trinidad Guardian—helpfully explained the Munroe doctrine and its corollary by which the United States may justify foreign intervention, at least to itself.
Considering Ghany’s explanation together with the historical background, which I have outlined above, may assist readers in evaluating the realities embedded in the power plays in Venezuela. It seems to me that we may have little say in Venezuelan realities except to demand consistent treatment of those who flee here, bearing in mind the harsh approaches taken with arrivals from some other countries.
Regarding Tobago however, at the risk of repetition, we the people of Trinidad and Tobago are not to be deterred from having a big say in what happens in Tobago with our money. Slices of Tobago cannot be eaten up a la carte.
Pesky though the views of others may be to politicians, power brokers and policemen, references to treachery and lack of patriotism are deplorable. Hate mongering and attempting to suppress the media, free speech and expression, which are fundamental to modern democracy, will neither win friends nor influence those who care for our future.
Do the work properly. Put out a request for proposals for the development of Golden Grove Estate and Rocky Point requiring investors to put equity into the project.
Is it correct that the Golden Grove site already has the necessary approvals for a 500 room hotel?
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Business has always been transacted over dinner or golf etc. There was no tendering process inviting a hotel chain to Tobago. ALJ and others saw an opportunity to make something happen and they went about their usual channels in trying to get it done. Nothing new under the Trini Sun!
How much money did the government spend in order to regain Pigeon Point? Why was that necessary? Was it not so that ALL nationals can enjoy what is ours?
Hilton Tobago opened with much fanfare. How long did that last? As other persons have mentioned, how has the Sandals brand and modus operandi and concessions etc worked out for the other territories?
Someone used the phrase ‘fakesperts’ above BUT this is the information age with even more mis-information. If your business skills are what you purport them to be then certainly you can come and disseminate the correct information. If your not capable of doing that then how am I supposed to entrust you with something as tangible as ‘No Man’s Land’?
The more ‘everyday’ people had their say the more and more these so called business people came out of the woodwork about the benefits for Tobago, when, what they really wanted to say is “Aye, allyuh interferring with the millions I could be making”.
Can one hotel brand drive Tobago’s economy? No! Tobago Hilton proved that! But the Butch Stewarts and the ALJs and others feasting that night, plotting for concessions and subventions etc would certainly be laughing all the way to the bank!
Another quote”There are many examples in history of imperialist acts of great powers,disposing of territories both within and outside Europe.”Is land to build ah hotel we talking bout to boost tourism.
Martin Daley seems not to understand the difference between wanting a particular brand than wanting any brand.
Martin Daley “With respect to the powerful personalities who were involved in that dinner,their expectations that they could cede valuable piece of Tobago by means of a private dinner party”now tell me wtf i suppose to say?
Collin Cudjoe what was for dessert?
hahahahaha Gaspree island lol
wired 858 agree with all commentators. do not have or share opinions for fear of comments being labeled.
Lasana, time to start another page WiredThinkOnlyTT868 – just a thought and be prescriptive
If again Brian Harry, looking at some of these dumb ass comments l keep remembering the old saying ‘reading is fundamental’ …
Tanya i had to remind myself that I can’t get blood from stone… ?
Lasana Liburd “dumd ass”?????
Collin she didn’t specifically refer to any commenter or comment. I’m sure Tanya will be mindful when responding directly to members.
Lasana Liburd …. wtf?
Tanya, Collin just suggested that he might be offended and I said you didn’t target anyone specifically and I’m sure you wouldn’t.
Lasana Liburd …. gotcha ….
Hmmm, “dumb ass comments,” ok.
I wish there could be a discussion about what the writer said in his article. The side and off-topic talk is so………….. and we do easily slip into it
Martin Daley never came up with an idea at a dinner party or golf course or buisness lunch never met a client anywhere only at his office.
Collin Cudjoe the value? The relevance? The point? So now what do you think of what he has actually written? Just asking ….
Brian Harry arm chair criticism.Sandals was interested in investing in Tobago in “Banga season and “ye of high moral values ” and political agendas chased dem away. Still trying to find d one buisness deal where everything was above board
Collin what is my political agenda? What criticism can you ascribe to me? All I’m saying and will continue to say – let’s have an intelligent and coherent discussion about these and other national issues. Daly’s article is interesting and raises some excellent discussion points. None of these comments focus on what he wrote. So what is the conversation about?
Collin Cudjoe If there were fewer of ‘Ye of low moral values’ T&T might actually not be in such a mess and considered by it’s own citizens as Corrupt. https://www.transparency.org/country
I suggest before any opinions are shared that Tt examines the experiences of other countries where Sandals have an operations contract only and then talk, listen to the Prime Ministers of some of these countries
So many Fakesperts demonizing everything. Sandals was a VERY positive initiative for the country as a whole. It always was. And there are MANY foolish people who are simply an echo chamber of negativity. Because they hear some fool say something speculative not based on fact and run to town with it. To save T&T we will have to suffer many a fool to the pain of wisdom or well will end up losing everything.
up to now , no one has been able to say how sandals would be positive. could you please enlighten us Alan Brizan!
It wasn’t about giving Tobago to Sandals
It was about getting Sandals and using piece of Tobago
If other hotels want in on Tobago let them tender
What’s wrong with business ventures being decided at a dinner party? If the objective is to aquire the Sandals brand, how and why do you take that to tender?
‘Munroe’ Doctrine, Martin? Come on, do better.
That aside, i didn’t read Ghany’s article, but I doubt the US interest has more to do with 19th century notions of neo-colonial expansion, than it has to do with naked avarice. Also, speaking of passé US foreign policies, he could have easily thrown in a “Gun Boat Diplomacy” reference as well, with economic sanctions being the contemporary weapon of choice.
I love how Martin Daly the well off Trini knows whats best Tobagonians meanwhile in Tobago https://newsday.co.tt/2019/02/10/silent-majority-wanted-sandals/
Joel Riley Presidential tabanca
Except: So claimed Kelvon Morris, spokesman of the newly-formed advocacy group Citizens In Support of Tobago Development.
“You would be surprised to hear the number of people that actually had projects in train geared towards benefiting from the Sandals experience,” Morris said in a Sunday Newsday interview.
THAT is your proof Joel Riley? Really?
“… we know that the environment is the easiest claim…”
“Tobagonians are naturally paid back. We are very reserved and normally keep most of our thoughts to ourselves. So, you would hear things and say, ‘Why are Tobagonians not riling up?’
“They would have a view but would prefer to keep it to themselves…”
Kelvon Morris is surely aching for a life in politics with this shallow BS he is serving.
It is so weak as to be pure comedy.
Lasana Liburd understand that he Kelvon Morris doesn’t speak for most tobagonians. I wish the discussion could address substantive issues and stay clear of these superficial banalities
How Daly’s statement more valid Kelvon Morris Lasana Liburd ? Lok Jack say boo we jump THA head says bah ignore him. Is validity determine by class and economic, political, background? We have no new ideas just old complaints.
Joel tell me what about Daly’s statement was invalid. Daly give his opinion. Kelvon claimed to be speaking on behalf of “Tobago’s silent majority” which is in itself a hilarious paradox.
Feel free to rebut Daly but not with that nonsense from Kelvon Morris that would be ripped to shred in a forum like this if he ever tried it on.
Joel Riley simple.. Validity is derived from agreement… No one in this topic came in with an open mind for dialogue. There are people who never wanted Sandals.. Those who wanted sandals if xyz was met and those who wanted Sandals regardless
Makesi Alexander did you read the “rebuttal” posted from Kelvon Morris? Care to do so and tell me the strength of it?
In truth, this is about Daly’s opinion and nobody is addressing that. Instead they are just saying that Daly is well off, lives in Trinidad and was once considered for the post of president.
Surely you all can do better than that.
Lasana Liburd to try and convince you? My time is too precious sir. There is little anyone can add to this subject to change any pov at this stage of the game
Lasana Liburd the point I made to you last month is the same I’ll make now.. Show me perfection in this imperfect world and I’ll be fine. Show me the perfect model of development.. The perfect hotel.. The perfect protection of the environment while developing infrastructure
Makesi Alexander show me where I asked you to convince me of anything.
If someone posts an article and you’re commenting on anything but the article, that’s trolling.
I asked people to lift the level of their responses. But I can’t get blood from stone.
Rest assured that I do not yearn after whatever pearls of wisdom you seem to think you have.
An opinion masqeurading as facts.
Lasana Liburd ? ? ? ? ? that last sentence really ‘hurt’ my feelings. Mission complete
Lasana Liburd when those multiple hats you wear of moderator/owner/commenter are blurred it must be difficult.. Worse yet when you add emotion into it
Makesi the multiple hats are indeed a challenge and I do my best at it.
so wait they talk about who daly is than what he said?
Makesi Alexander so tell us so that we can be enlightened, in the current discussion tell us how the separate roles should operate. What would be different ? What would he say in each role? Humor me into some role play, please
Brian Harry you’re the same guy arguing with Collin earlier?.. (insert some comment about my knowledge being superior to yours in a tasteful manner) (then you respond and we do the back and forth)
Umm how about no
Makesi Alexander dude stay on point please. I’m trying to understand Lasana’s comment. You asserted that his multiple roles as owner, commentator and moderator are blurred. That’s said, show us how. Simple. What would he say or do differently in each role ? Easy question and not a trick one
Makesi Alexander and I didn’t understand your response to me either. But I did gather that you had superior knowledge. So as owner Lasana should be justly proud to have attracted a man of superior knowledge to his site. Lasana Liburd , move up !!!
Brian Harry let’s try this again slowly… I choose not to engage you. ??????.
Brian some people seem to feel they are here to be heard but not to listen, and to pontificate but not to discuss.
Lasana Liburd tell Brian he didn’t have to block me though… Why he has me renting space in his head? ?????????
Lasana Liburd so one cannot make a decision not to engage? Especially on a topic that had nothing to do with the post? Watery steups allyuh good in hear oui
Lasana Liburd there’s no challenge. Don’t take that chain up! I’ve still not had an answer that says what your varying positions be
mr. morris is also on the board of the Tobago Tourism Authority.,
Spencer thanks. Guess I shouldn’t be surprised.
Morris comment is true about Tobagonians
They don’t make much noise publicly
I was told over the weekend, Tobago has a lot to be grateful for. Apparently millions have been spent on infrastructural works for sandals already. Water, roads, ict etc have all been upgraded for the benefit of Tobagonians.so thanks, Rowley..
Spencer Crouch how is the Cove estate being marketed/used?
you should probably ask the cove people.
As a Tobagonian myself and still having the majority of my family living in that beautiful rock, I’m keenly interested in all ideas and thoughts tobago. nothing is wrong with there being multiple views. Nuance is all around us – right or wrong is a limited scope for any discussion. Daly threw out a starting point for a discussion and we just let it escape. I really wish there could have been more
to me Daly did not say much except ” Do the work properly. Put out a request for proposals for the development of Golden Grove Estate and Rocky Point requiring investors to put equity into the project.”
Kyon that doesn’t make him a Tobago whisperer who can hear the unspoken word though.
When you say stuff like “the majority says”, you best be able to back it up.
Spencer Crouch Daly knows how to follow “procedure” when it suits him but time to rid himself of the CJ hearsay and word of mouth is all that matters.
Joel Riley all the criticism of the CJ is based on hearsay? You cannot be serious.
Yet he remains ……
Joel those two facts are not mutually exclusive.
This reminds me of the noise with our current President……