If time is money and you have more time, Do you need more money?

Wednesday, May 9, 2012

Town meetings without "My Friends..." every few minutes

I am sitting here on the patio of the Bar in Morgans Bluff in a heated but friendly post election debate.  There are few words that transcend all languages like "no" and the "F" word.  With strong Bahamian accents most of the Queen's English is rumbled and garbled but there is no mistaking the two key words.  There have been anywhere from 8 to 12 participating in this discussion.  It is nice to see that the population has strong opinions on their well being compared to what has become of other lands.

I took a moment to check what Google had on the matter.  It seems that the ruling party has been ousted...

Ruling party ousted in Bahamas election

"The Progressive Liberal Party has won the election," said Ingraham, who served as prime minister from 1992 to 2002 and again from 2007. "I do not propose to lead the party in opposition."

Analysts had predicted a close race between the two leading parties in the sparsely populated island chain that is heavily dependent on tourism and earnings from its role as an offshore financial center.

The Progressive Liberal Party faces tough challenges, including tepid economic growth and an official unemployment rate of nearly 15 percent.

The party was ousted amid several scandals five years ago, including claims that immigration officials had expedited a residency permit for late Playboy Playmate Anna Nicole Smith.

Home to about 350,000 people, the scattered archipelago stretching from just off eastern Florida to near Cuba is one of the most prosperous countries in the Atlantic-Caribbean region.

But it is also saddled with a heavy debt burden and a burgeoning crime and murder rate.

In addition to crime, the lackluster economy and oil issues largely dominated the run-up to Monday's vote.

The major parties traded jabs over oil exploration, which is highly sensitive given revenues from tourism and the allure of white sand beaches and azure waters to the island chain's many frequent vacationers.

Analysts say there could be 1 billion barrels of oil reserves in Bahamian waters, offering an opportunity for economic growth. But extensive drilling for oil could come at a cost to tourism.

Ingraham initially vowed he would not approve any drilling for oil if re-elected, but later said he would authorize it once the appropriate regulatory procedures were put in place.

He also sought to cast Christie's party as being closely tied to the Bahamas Petroleum Company, which holds five licenses to explore for oil in the Bahamas. Christie and the Progressive Liberal Party denied any links to the oil company.

(Writing by Tom Brown and Kevin Gray; editing by David Adams and Mohammad Zargham)

What this means to cruisers will yet to be seen but of mice and men.


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