Kyat fight! Rowley sinks his teeth into fresh controversy

EPL Infrafred Sauna

Well, Sport Minister Brent Sancho is not the only fellah in Cabinet who knows what it is like to score an own goal. Then again, Prime Minister Kamla Persad-Bissessar has hired so many own goal specialists that the People’s Partnership Government should probably be investigated for match fixing.

All the same, it was PNM leader Dr Keith Rowley who hammered the ball past his own goalkeeper this time. Naturally, Rowley did his best impression of a hapless defender at a public meeting in Brazil—albeit the one behind La Horquetta and not the site of that 7-1 Germany semifinal triumph.

“She could jump high, she could jump low,” said Rowley. “She could drink this, she could drink that. She could bark at my dog because I will ignore she cat.”

Photo: First Kamla and now Keithos?! Why those Trini politicians don't stay out of Brazil with their nonsense! (Copyright AFP 2014/Tasso Marcelo)
Photo: First Kamla and now Keithos?! Why those Trini politicians don’t stay out of Brazil with their nonsense!
(Copyright AFP 2014/Tasso Marcelo)

Eh? Wait, is it Tanty Kamla or the dog that was barking? And what does the cat have to do with anything? Was the cat bullying the dog? Was it self-defence? Is ignoring one’s problems the best solution? Does anyone know if the dog was traumatised?

It was a bizarre statement. More like something the Riddler might say after his second bottle of Johnny Walker than what you would expect on a political platform from a man aspiring to rescue Trinidad and Tobago from remarkably high public cynicism and low oil prices.

Let’s start with what the two opposing camps made of it.

Stacy Roopnarine, the chairperson of UNC Women’s Arm, said Rowley’s statement was too derogatory to repeat. Which might be easier to believe if the UNC did not put then PNM candidate Hilton Sandy’s racist “Calcutta ship” barb in an advertisement that was repeated ad nauseam during their unsuccessful THA election campaign.

“We are extremely disappointed that in today’s society when women have struggled for decades and fought for equality in treatment to take their place side by side with our brothers, that you still have a leader making such distasteful comments against women,” stated Roopnarine, in a press release. “… Globally, women continue to fight for their rightful place and the Hon Kamla Persad-Bissessar has been one such leader to always advocate for women’s rights and equality in treatment…

“We therefore call upon the Leader of the Opposition to apologise to the Prime Minister and every woman of this nation for his disrespectful and derogatory comments against women…”

Roopnarine knows the Prime Minister’s take on equality in the workplace first-hand. Persad-Bissessar sacked her last month after she squealed on one of the boys, Suruj Rambachan, over some suspect State contracts.

Photo: Trinidad and Tobago Prime Minister Kamla Persad-Bissessar. (Copyright AFP 2014/Frederic Dubray)
Photo: Trinidad and Tobago Prime Minister Kamla Persad-Bissessar.
(Copyright AFP 2014/Frederic Dubray)

As for Roopnarine’s call to arms for womenfolk, it would be interesting to hear what Nicole Dyer-Griffith thinks of the new poster girl for “female solidarity.”But, as a wise green frog would mutter, that ent none of Live Wire’s business.

On the other side of the fence, Rowley supporters pointed out that the Opposition Leader merely quoted from an old Tobago saying and detractors were either advised to lighten up or accused of bias against the good folk of the “Sister Isle.”

Mr Live Wire can think of a few old sayings that are best buried and forgotten.

Suppose disgraced ex-Chaguaramas Development Authority (CDA) board member Jaishima Leladharsingh had said he was referencing that old, popular nursery rhyme: “…catch a nigger by the toe?”

Besides, who was Rowley’s intended target audience? Elderly, non-PC Tobagonian men? When a punchline falls flat, is it the fault of the spectators or the speaker?

Trinidad and Tobago decided that it wanted a change of Government two and a half years ago, when thousands of citizens took to the street in outrage at sneaky Section 34. All the PNM leadership had to accomplish between then and the 2015 General Election was not to say or do anything stupid enough to make them change their minds.

But these days, it seems like expecting Keithos to stay out of trouble is like asking a six-month old baby to stand up straight or asking the West Indies to bat for 50 overs.

Photo: Opposition Leader Keith Rowley. (Courtesy Jyoti Communication)
Photo: Opposition Leader Keith Rowley.
(Courtesy Jyoti Communication)

Live Wire believes whatever designs the Opposition Leader may or may not have on the Prime Minister’s cat and whichever willing waistline he happens to wine on during the bacchanal season pales in comparison to the PP’s rape of the Treasury and routine disrespect of citizens.

All the same, Rowley is well advised to leave the witty soundbites to characters like Jack Warner and Anil Roberts. Speak to us like intelligent adults, Opposition Leader, not as though we are drunken patrons in a talk tent or comedy festival.

And, for God’s sake, Brazil is no place to forget the merit of a solid defence.

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About Mr. Live Wire

Mr. Live Wire
Mr. Live Wire is an avid news reader who translates media reports for persons who can handle the truth. And satire. Unlike Jack Nicholson, he rarely yells.

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  1. We Tobago slang, “tit for tat , butter for fat , yuh kill meh dog , ah go kill yuh cat” done talk

  2. Well written. The first mistake Keith made was to play Carnival without his wife! I think whosoever planning strategies for PNM campaign should be dropped!Push family values forward I am not seeing Mrs.Rowley much at all!She needs to take a page from ?Michelle Obama book!Keith Rowley doesn’t need to stoop to UNC level to win votes.Long gone are the days of Panday – Patos politics! Now is Cat and Dog,literally! !

  3. But I’m a bit suprised at Lasana, that he didn’t see the context in which the comment was made. Every living opportunity Kamla and the UNC get is to spend most of their time on Rowley (as if that’s the what the REAL issue is).so he was saying that with all these focusing on him he will ignore them. Those were words taken–not just from Tobago–, Kitchener also did a song years ago using the same phrase. the only difference is that in the song he was saying what the real saying is, which is “kill dih cat”. This just so much a non-issue, that the UNC is trying to make political mileage out of. And if they continue to beat up on it, it may just work against them. They should learn from Tobago.

  4. Steups wasting time on trivial matters

  5. Love it. People only Like to Hear what they want. I hope that Trinidad understand what Really Happening and Stop Pretending not to see and Hear when we all Know them Sleeping with their Eyes Wide Shut lol.

  6. We were always on the same page Liburd. I think our politicians are all entertainer wannabees, who crave the encouragement of a stage-side audience with little regard for the possible reaction of the “uncommitted” electorate, who more and more carry the critical vote.

  7. Rowley feels he has won already …that can be the only explanation for such careless behaviour ……….not too sure he is where he think he is ….this will be an interesting election

  8. Rowley feels he has won already …that can be the only explanation for such careless behaviour ……….not too sure he is where he think he is ….this will be an interesting election

  9. I don’t mind the exchange Glenn Wilkes. And I can’t argue that point. I agree. Some people are good at it. Most aren’t.
    But you must know if your end game is enlightenment or knowledge. And if it is the latter, you can’t allow those punchlines to get in the way of what you’re trying to do.
    Personally, I try to avoid sliding into slander or personal insults even with the satire. As best as possible, I try not to distract people from the point I’m trying to make. So the jokes are only a nice aside.
    If I were a politician, I would obviously take far fewer risks.

  10. Lasana Liburd,
    I hope you realize that Wired868 is now out of the closet and you are also now outed as a PNM supporter. But you can argue, I suppose, that you used to be a PP supporter before but you and your site have only just migrated.

  11. Not to unnecessarily prolong the discourse, but I still maintain that it need not be a choice between “serious” and “entertaining”. You’re probably too young to know the genesis of the “University of Woodford Square”. The crowds that came to the square in those days WERE entertained by the lively debates between Eric Williams and Dom Basil Matthews. And serious issues CAN be discussed with occasional levity.

  12. Either way, I wasn’t knocking the content at a talk tent or talk show. I’m saying that Paul Keens-Douglas is an entertainer. We go there to be entertained.
    Politicians shouldn’t be trying hard to be amusing or entertaining to me.

  13. Well you did say “Talk Tent” and not “Talk Show”, which led to my assumption it meant Paul Keens-Douglas, Felix Edingborough & Co. Their annual show is called “Talk Tent” and that is what I was specifically referring to.

  14. I’m a talk show patron Glenn Wilkes. It isn’t a slur on the audience. It is just a point that people go to those shows to be entertained and have a good time.
    Don’t you think political meetings should be different?

  15. Your reference to “Talk Tent” patrons however, is unfortunate and unfair. The annual show by that name, has maintained a high standard.

  16. One question : Is Ms.Stacy Roopnarine the spokesperson for the Hindu Women’s League ? If the answer is in the affirmative,all right. Carry on smartly !

  17. The four-letter “c” alternative to “cat” is also in the Dictionary. Would it also have been acceptable? Would any of the “defenders” have been as comfortable if their daughter had come from school and told them that their teacher had used the same expression as an indication of the consequences of misbehaviour in class?

  18. I am in complete agreement. I don’t accept that being an entry in the Dictionary of the English/Creole of Trinidad & Tobago justifies its use on a public platform by an aspiring Prime Minister. At the launch of that Dictionary, I asked Lise what criteria she used in deciding whether to include or exclude any of the quite vulgar expressions that are in common use. Her reply was simple – “You haven’t read the book yet, they are ALL there”. In fact use of some of the listed expressions in public would qualify as obscene language.

  19. the nine day wonder,things change when all of us are serious……… is all one huge JOKE……..NEXT!!!!!!!

  20. In 2010, Kamla made her Pipe remarks .Now 1015 we know she is unfit to be PM .Do we have to wait until 2020 to figurout the same about Rowley?????? Bass & Patos Must be have a good laugh over a glass .

  21. Lasana, by and large i agree with your message couched in brilliant satire of course, but what amazes me is how silent intelligent and law abiding citizens are concerning matters that were not only detrimental to our society and institutions but downright dangerous and illegal, and the PM has condoned if not encouraged it all, i don’t know what else the ex AG could have done to further defile his office, likewise Kamla with her untruths and acquiescence towards all his emm misdeeds their offices will be forever be tainted. I agree Dr Rowley has to be circumspect in his actions and words, there is no room for picong or jokes, clean or unclean, as much as it has historically been a part of the silly season, because this government has become experts at mis-direction, deflection, blatant lies and worse. I could only hope people would no longer allow themselves to be used, abused and utterly manipulated by this most unfit government.

  22. Hahaha. I remember Lincoln Douglas stopping by to solicit my vote a few years ago. And he seemed to get very uncomfortable when I told him my name.
    I kept trying to find out why I should possibly believe that replacing Calder Hart with Jack Warner was an effective way of safeguarding the treasury… And Douglas just kept subconsciously glancing over his shoulder towards the gate after every question! 🙂

  23. But if any campaigners do come by your house and start reciting nursery rhymes Lasana do me a favour and videotape it please 🙂

  24. She was squatting on Nicole’s property not too long ago…she feel we forget….did she APOLOGISE after eviction

  25. Stacy Roopnarine walked right into that one. Poor thing

  26. Imagine if a politician came to my gate to ask for my vote and starting reciting nursery rhymes and ancient slangs… I understand that those meetings might be long and you want to spice it up a bit.
    But put some more thought into that.

  27. Thank you Lasana for saying that the electorate should not be spoken to like they were in a talk tent. Both parties are guilty of over-reliance on picong. I like a joke as much as any other Trini, but politicians play too much to the drumming and iron beating rhythm section than to the serious debaters.

  28. Finger on the button Lasana, i especially like the bit about Stacy Roopnarine as the poster girl for ‘female solidarity’, i too wonder what are Mrs Dyer Griffith’s thoughts on Stacy’s (such an irresistable beauty) new found consciousness.

  29. Would love to hear some more comments. The political realities at home are so dishearening…

  30. JUst read the whole thing and because I am far away and dont always have the time to keep up with the blow by blow political baccanal I may be misinerpreting but eithe r way and for either party this low level of back and forth does not sound good…so sad. I love my country…

  31. I hate the politrick season…but then I love it! Great article Lasana

  32. The doing away with tradition is the bane of bane of civilization! LOL

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