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This culture of entitlement in sport

Published: 
Tuesday, October 3, 2017

If Sport stakeholders in Trinidad and Tobago continue living in denial oblivious to the harsh fact of austerity. Sport will grind to a standstill as the consequence of the culture of entitlement and dependency .

Why should I give this to you?

A simple question that can make a significant difference in moving from the embedded culture of entitlement and dependency. It would be a wasted opportunity if we don’t use the current economic difficulties T&T is facing to right the wrong of dependency and entitlement that has seen the rich get richer and the poor get poorer. A nation in crisis economically, socially, emotionally and mentally.

How did we reach here?

Every year in T&T the Budget statement by the Minister of Finance captivates public and private discourse, debate and speculation. This year there is great angst given the spectre of a need for self imposed rather than IMF imposed austerity measures. T&T has hit the economic wall just as marathoners hit the wall during their 26 mile adventure.

Hindsight is always clearer if only because of the benefit of what is rather than speculation about what will be.

The unintended consequences of well intentioned plans and budgets is a culture of entitlement and dependency. Put another way, helping people become helpless, killing people with kindness.

The crossing of the thin line between a helping hand and a handout. When you look for synonyms for the word “dependency” in the dictionary you will find “addiction, habit, enslavement.”

Is the reality of our dire economic situation a needed culture shock? And will the measures in fiscal 2018 enable people to become self-sufficient, reduce dependency, develop a stronger work ethic and eradicate mediocre meritocracy? Or will we focus on clamouring for a fair share of nothing?

Given a stubborn budget deficit of billions how are we going to sustain our current demands on the treasury? Given current economic parameters T&T will not out-sprint IMF conditionalities.

We can not continue to live as if we have a budget surplus.

Sport organisations and stakeholders must come to terms with the cold hard facts -The addiction, habit, enslavement to state funding as an entitlement is unsustainable.

Weaning T&T sports away from entitlement, dependency and handouts will require willpower and discipline.

What is required to achieve self sufficiency is a sustainable entrepreneurial ,market oriented viable sport industry.