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A public disservice

Saturday, July 5, 2014

Ostracised by the labour movement and exiled as a traitor to the cause, Watson Duke has survived not only alienation by the “labour party” but sustained and vituperative challenges within his own organisation. Duke has almost silently achieved labour leadership by levying the movement’s most treasured objective: inflicting sustained suffering on ordinary citizens to punish an insolent government. As strategies go it is akin to bathing a dog with Sevin powder to rid the pooch of fleas. Chances are the flea infestation will be neutralised, but you may kill the dog in the process. 


The return of the “Duke” is interesting in that while other labour leaders bleat incessantly about “shutting down the country,” Watson Duke has gone ahead and done it. The process has been gradual but it has been unfolding for a lot longer than most people may appreciate. The impact of the PSA’s campaign is acutely felt now that horror stories are emerging about difficulties with passport renewals. 


Trinidadians living abroad who’ve made the injudicious decision to return home for a brief visit now find themselves trapped here on the flypaper with the rest of us. Others are stricken with illnesses which require treatment abroad so this protracted impasse is quite literally a life-and-death affair. Then there are shell-shocked citizens desperately trying to flee this crumbling civilisation whose plans for survival are scuttled by an inability to travel. 


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