Jamaica Observer http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/ JamaicaObserver.com, the most concise and in-depth website for news coverage on Jamaica and the Caribbean. Updated daily 7 days a week, 24 hours a day en-us copyright Jamaica Observer, 2011 He came, saw, conquered...or did he? http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/columns/He-came--saw--conquered---or-did-he_18766261 PRESIDENT Obama has come and gone and the echoes remain. He made history, and not just because he is the first man of colour to lead a nation billed as the most powerful on Earth. Whether that is so or not, its significance will be debated elsewhere. What we saw was a man who didn't hesitate to reach out to others of whatever colour, pedigree or history. He seems always prepared to share his vision with them. In the short span of time that he set foot on Jamaican soil he showed us how he does it. Local Opinion Fri, 17 Apr 2015 01:00:00 GMT The visit http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/columns/The-visit_18766252 On April 8, 2015, around 6:00 pm, word was "The eagle has landed" and nail biting turned to jubilation -- the visit was on! For a night and a day President Barack Obama was, per capita, the most hugged, kissed potentate -- no queen or pope compares. He is suave, smart, can-do man clothed in the military might of the USA, and we loved him to bits. But it began 24 hours of indirect mendicancy as we Facebooked our greedy lists to catch his eye. On passing Heroes Circle he rose in his seat to greet the children's flags and was memorialised in all smartphones. Our chests heaved with pride as the most powerful man on Earth swept past in chariots with firepower of an Armada. The most powerful black man to walk Earth, and for a trice all was level -- black, white, rich, poor. Obama was in the house. Local Opinion Fri, 17 Apr 2015 00:00:00 GMT Use PetroCaribe, green energy bonds to pay for renewables http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/columns/Use-PetroCaribe--green-energy-bonds-to-pay-for-renewables_18720901 HOW do we raise the US$2,800 million to finance the all-renewables initiative? First up, let's jump-start the transformation by raising the critical loan amount necessary to replace JPS' "always-on" (base-load) generation of some 350 MW. This replacement translates to a combination of 350 MW in total of wind -- of which we already have some 30 MW from the Wigton wind farm and others -- plus 350 MW of new solar. Local Opinion Fri, 17 Apr 2015 01:00:00 GMT The Tivoli time bomb had to be defused http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/columns/The-Tivoli-time-bomb-had-to-be-defused_18762445 As I continue to listen to evidence coming out of the Tivoli Enquiry, and especially that from former Commissioner of Police Owen Ellington, I am convinced that the security forces had no other option but to storm into the barricaded community in May 2010. Local Opinion Thu, 16 Apr 2015 00:00:00 GMT Obama and the Jamaican reality http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/columns/Obama-and-the-Jamaican-reality_18762446 In his book Struggle in the periphery, the late Michael Manley began the first chapter by explaining the Munro doctrine of 1823. James Munroe, who was president of the United States at that time, said: "...we should consider any attempt on their part to extend their political system to any portion of this hemisphere as dangerous to our peace and safety". Local Opinion Thu, 16 Apr 2015 00:00:00 GMT Take your energy where it is needed: Take it to Jamaica http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/columns/Take-your-energy-where-it-is-needed--Take-it-to-Jamaica_18684822 On leaving our homeland Jamaica to be a resident in another country, we and our offspring become members of the Jamaican Diaspora. The Diaspora movement seeks to engage all Jamaicans living overseas to know the benefits of its strength and to give back to Jamaica in whatever way possible. The areas of focus are trade, investment, business and philanthropy. Local Opinion Thu, 16 Apr 2015 00:00:00 GMT In defence of Chronixx http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/columns/In-defence-of-Chronixx_18756817 The ultimate measure of a man is not where he stands in the moments of comfort and convenience, but where he stands at times of challenge and controversy. -- Martin Luther King Jr (1963) Local Opinion Wed, 15 Apr 2015 00:00:00 GMT Obama's visit and Ja's expectations http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/columns/Obama-s-visit-and-Ja-s-expectations_18751824 MANY people expected that when President Barack Obama came to Jamaica he would be a harbinger of good news. Almost everyone had some expectation of what he could do. If you listened to or read the vox populi there could be the conviction that he possessed divine qualities, or at the very least had the ability to part the waters of the Caribbean. He did not disappoint in some respects, especially with regard to the fact that he did come and many were able to be enthralled that he had set foot on Jamaican soil. Local Opinion Wed, 15 Apr 2015 00:00:00 GMT Honesty versus optics http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/columns/Honesty-versus-optics_18751841 ON his way out from his post-Easter conquest of Jamaica, Barack Obama, the 44th president of the United States, stood on the step of Air Force One and "flung a rainbow from his hand". White House photographer Pete Souza caught the image of Obama, silhouetted against the evening sky, his right arm raised toward the glorious multicoloured arc in the sky. Local Opinion Tue, 14 Apr 2015 00:00:00 GMT Going solar can reverse the dollar slide http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/columns/Going-solar-can-reverse-the-dollar-slide_18720899 Now that you have excess electricity virtually "for free", make the switch to electric vehicles; the "fuel" is already paid for! Local Opinion Tue, 14 Apr 2015 00:00:00 GMT Why has the port privatisation awakened a 'toothless' TUC? http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/columns/Why-has-the-port-privatisation-awakened-a--toothless--TUC-_18751539 SO, matters concerning the running of Kingston Container Terminal (KCT) have now been settled and it has been officially declared and signatures affixed to a deal that will see Terminal Link CMA/CGM take charge of this national asset, on a concession deal, for the next 30 years. Local Opinion Tue, 14 Apr 2015 00:00:00 GMT Obama and PJ — 'Wah gwaan Jamaica?' http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/columns/Obama-and-PJ----Wah-gwaan-Jamaica-_18741519 IT was a privilege to have been present at two moving events last week: President Obama's town hall meeting and former Prime Minister P J Patterson's 80th birthday celebrations. Both politicians were outstanding law students and have been acknowledged for their even temperament. In campaigning, Obama was nicknamed, "No drama Obama" and P J, the "Fresh Prince", who was not given to the platform dramatics of his predecessors. Local Opinion Mon, 13 Apr 2015 00:00:00 GMT Solar would save Jamaica US$1,200m each year http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/columns/Solar-would-save-Jamaica-US-1-200m-each-year_18725713 WHAT is the equipment cost for this massive over-abundance of solar and wind we talked about last week? Local Opinion Mon, 13 Apr 2015 00:00:00 GMT Cock-ups, mistakes, bungling, and fallouts... still no shame http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/columns/Cock-ups--mistakes--bungling--and-fallouts----still-no-shame_18728073 You can put lipstick on a pig. It's still a pig. — Barack Obama Local Opinion Sun, 12 Apr 2015 00:00:00 GMT Obama cannot fix Andrew and Portia http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/columns/Obama-cannot-fix-Andrew-and-Portia_18730018 Sylvia is in her mid 50s and lost her husband to prostate cancer five years ago. "I don't know if it is that I am still mourning and missing him, but as I watched President Obama do his strut up the stairs of Air Force One, turned, smiled and waved at us as he headed back home, I began to cry. He was in Jamaica for only a short time, but he just captured my heart and stirred my admiration for his work." Local Opinion Sun, 12 Apr 2015 00:00:00 GMT Obama retires Lee Kuan Yew's obtuse views about Jamaica and Jamaicans http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/columns/Obama-retires-Lee-Kuan-Yew-s-obtuse-views-about-Jamaica-and-Jamaicans_18727960 IF nothing else comes of President Obama's recent visit to Jamaica, the inscription he left in that visitors' register at Jamaica House on April 09, 2015 [mistakenly dated April 10, 2015] is sufficient to retire and render archaic the 1975 remarks by the former prime minister of Singapore, the late Lee Kuan Yew, about Jamaica and Jamaicans. Local Opinion Sun, 12 Apr 2015 00:00:00 GMT He was in Jamaica http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/columns/He-was-in-Jamaica_18727458 When President Barack Obama lost face in the congressional elections last November, many people thought he would have stayed down for the count. The Republicans were rubbing their hands with glee as they rejoiced over the discomfiture of one whom their Tea Party faction considered to be a presidential upstart. What they failed to notice was that he did not stay on the canvas. Before the official results were in, he was back up and in their face. "Yes, they had a good night," he said ruefully, "but as president, I am still responsible to the nation, and I have to break this deadlock between the White House and the Republican-controlled Congress." Local Opinion Sun, 12 Apr 2015 00:00:00 GMT US and the Caribbean: Brief summits not enough http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/columns/US-and-the-Caribbean--Brief-summits-not-enough_18727925 US President Barack Obama and Jamaica's Prime Minister Portia Simpson Miller have pronounced his visit to Jamaica and their bilateral discussions to be a success. What is certain is that media coverage of Obama's visit and his late-night call at the Bob Marley Museum, where the president declared "I still have all his albums", will have enhanced the Jamaican 'brand' in the US. Jamaica's tourism and investment prospects would have also benefited. Local Opinion Sun, 12 Apr 2015 00:00:00 GMT What motivates Obama? Principled pragmatism? http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/columns/What-motivates-Obama--Principled-pragmatism_18728028 IN the context of Obama's global priorities, the president of the United States' visit to Jamaica and meetings with Caricom leaders at this time caught me off guard. Aside from the wisdom of US normalising relations with Cuba, I failed to mention in a paper I delivered at the University of the West Indies, Mona, in January 2014, that Caribbean-US interests would be an "opportunity" for President Obama to pursue. Rightfully, some members of the audience asked where the Caribbean would fall in United States geopolitical priorities. Local Opinion Sun, 12 Apr 2015 00:00:00 GMT Singapore — More than an honourable mention http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/columns/Singapore---More-than-an-honourable-mention_18728085 I was pleased to hear President Barack Obama cite Singapore on his visit to Jamaica as an example of a small state that succeeded. Having just returned from Singapore, my own impression of its progress over the last 15 years since I have been going there has been quite staggering. Local Opinion Sun, 12 Apr 2015 00:00:00 GMT Committed to Caricom-US partnership http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/columns/Committed-to-Caricom-US-partnership_18729992 The following is the opening statement of Prime Minister Portia Simpson Miller at the Caricom-US summit, Thursday, April 9, 2015: Local Opinion Sun, 12 Apr 2015 00:00:00 GMT Leaders wanted, not politicians http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/columns/Leaders-wanted--not-politicians_18596901 HAVING compared the speeches of the keynote speakers at both last year and this year's National Leadership Prayer Breakfast, I have noticed a common trend. Reverend Dr Delford Davis, last year, while encouraging our leaders to be courageous, also called on them to be exemplary. This year, Reverend Everton Jackson indicated that if we are to restructure Jamaica then we need "insightful, visionary, creative and innovative leadership with strong moral authority". Local Opinion Sun, 12 Apr 2015 00:00:00 GMT Our mission is to make lives better http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/columns/Our-mission-is-to-make-lives-better_18728138 The following are the opening remarks by Perry G Christie, prime minister of The Bahamas and chairman of the Conference of Heads of Government of Caricom at the Caricom-US summit, Thursday, April 9, 2015: Local Opinion Sun, 12 Apr 2015 00:00:00 GMT Howdy, Barack http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/columns/Howdy--Barack_18730129 Jamaicans said hello and welcome to United States President Barack Obama on Wednesday, April 8, 2015 and the historic significance has not been lost. His departure the following day has left a trail of hope, concern, and disappointment. This week, The Agenda takes on the full 360 degrees of the visit. Lance Neita deals with the afterglow. Mark Wignall takes on the signposts Obama has left for our leaders. Garfield Higgins discusses the spills. Others take on the Singaporean comparison and the discussion would not be complete without IMF talk. Newcomer Josimar Scott then calls for Jamaica's politicians to shed their old skin and strive to be leaders of the ilk of Barack Obama. Read the chronicles of Barack on The Rock. Local Opinion Sun, 12 Apr 2015 00:00:00 GMT When Air Force One came to town http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/columns/When-Air-Force-One-came-to-town_18725667 WEDNESDAY night, April 8, 2015 — Members of the Jamaican news media are restricted to an area at the Norman Manley International Airport, waiting for history to be made. Barack Obama, the United States president, was due to land, for the first time, on Jamaican soil. Jamaicans had waited long for such a moment. Local Opinion Fri, 10 Apr 2015 02:00:00 GMT