No Sloganeering Except This New Slogan:


This blog has no preference for either of the two political parties in Jamaica, in my estimation they are both criminal gangs , unworthy of respect or support.

We however seek merely to highlight to the Jamaican public the facts and let them decide for themselves unfiltered.

The People’s National Party launched  their new talking  points , the “progressive agenda” at the Courtleigh hotel in New  Kingston last night. At that event party President Portia Simpson Miller had this to say :  The policy mixes contained in the document are aimed at fulfilling the mission Norman Manley spoke of in his last address to the party’s conference in 1968. “We have realised political independence now for almost 50 years. However, as Norman Manley said, the task ahead is to achieve economic independence. The ideas contained in this document will take us onward and forward to achieving that target.

We have realised political independence now for almost 50 years. However, as Norman Manley said, the task ahead is to achieve economic independence. The ideas contained in this document will take us onward and forward to achieving that target,” Simpson Miller said in the packed auditorium, with dozens locked out because there was no space in the room.

Manley, the first president of the PNP, said the mission of his generation was to win self-government for Jamaica. He also said the mission of the generation which succeeded him was “reconstructing the social and economic society and life of Jamaica”.

In the Progressive Agenda, the PNP says it commits to “an approach to governance that will be data-driven, evidence-based with measurable outcomes”.

The party says governance would be constructed on five pillars – human resource development; a safe, secure and just society; participatory, accountable and responsible society; progressive internationalism; and economic growth for sustainable national development.

Commenting on the work of the Anthony Hylton-chaired committee which developed the Progressive Agenda, Simpson Miller said it delivered what she asked for.

Opposition parties are always faced with the temptation of crafting programmes for vote-getting. I thank the team for resisting the formulation of empty promises, quick fixes and populist sloganeering,” she said.

“I thank you who crafted the Progressive Agenda for not simply rushing to satisfy the understandable anxieties of a population that is desperately in need of hope,” she added.

Among the promises contained in the Progressive Agenda is a commitment to introducing greater transparency to the management of the country’s finance and economic affairs.

“Fiscal imbalances, persistent deficits and low rates of growth in the national economy have been consequences of this over many years,” the party noted.

“In an effort to secure greater transparency, greater fiscal responsibility and greater levels of public accountability which is at the heart of good governance, the PNP will establish an estimates committee in the Parliament to have consideration of expenditure priorities in the context of a medium-term economic framework,” it said.

“We will also ensure the effective functioning of a committee on taxation in the Parliament able to consult with stakeholders in considering taxation policy and revenue-raising measures,” it added.

Simpson Miller’s party has also promised to position Jamaica’s cultural and creative industries, including sports, as priority industries, given their enormous potential for growth, export, employment, general economic development, and human-resource development.

“The party, as government, will seek to develop modern cultural and creative industries policies, informed by research and analysis,” the Progressive Agenda says.

Simpson Miller yesterday stressed that the way forward for Jamaica’s development must be driven by research. “We must be evidence-based. We must engage in fact-finding, data collection, objective analysis and level-headed realism,” she said.

The Progressive Agenda represents the fourth policy review of the PNP since Norman Manley published the Man with the Plan in the 1950s. Michael Manley published Democratic Socialism in the 1970s and The Compass in the 1980s before P.J. Patterson’s 21st Century Mission in the 1990s.daraine.luton@gleanerjm.com

I have not seen the document and as such I am in no position to comment beyond what the Party President said in her address.   Her statements rings hauntingly familar , as if somehow we have been there before , I cannot quite put my finger on why I have this feeling of unease and disquiet. I think I will go over her statements again….just give me a minute please readers.!!!!…………..

Got it,here it is, this is  the source of my disquiet, how could I have been so blind?

The Progressive Agenda represents the fourth policy review of the PNP since Norman Manley published the Man with the Plan in the 1950s. Michael Manley published Democratic Socialism in the 1970s and The Compass in the 1980s before P.J. Patterson’s 21st Century Mission in the 1990s.

There you have it for as long as they have been  a party the PNP has been issuing plans(dogma) catchy electioneering literature that gets discarded once they have seized state power. Make no mistake the PNP is a master of winning elections.

Two-party politics after independence: 1962–80
The two leading political figures in the early days of independence were Alexander Bustamante, leader of the centre-right Jamaica Labour Party (JLP), which he founded in 1943, and Norman Manley, leader of the left-of-centre People’s National Party (PNP), which he founded in 1938. The JLP held power 1962–72, winning general elections in 1962 and 1967 under the leadership first of Bustamente, who ruled until 1964 (when he was replaced by Donald Sangster) and then  Hugh Shearer, from 1967. It was a time of strong economic growth, of around 6% per annum, with investments in tourism and the alumina and other industries, but wealth was unequally shared.

In the early 1970s, the economy slowed down and there was demand from the urban poor for a greater share of the country’s wealth. This enabled the socialist PNP, led by Norman Manley’s charismatic son Michael, to win the 1972 general election, and the PNP dominated between 1972 and 1980. Michael Manley embarked on a radical programme of social reform, investment in education and health, and economic independence from the industrialized world. Despite high unemployment, Manley was returned to power in 1976 with an increased majority, but by 1980 there was high inflation and GDP had fallen 25% since 1972. Manley rejected a loan from the International Monetary Fund (IMF) because of the conditions attached and instead pursued a policy of economic self-reliance.

Political violence and JLP rule: 1980–89
The 1980 general election campaign was extremely violent, despite calls by Manley and the leader of the JLP, Edward Seaga, for moderation. The outcome was a decisive victory for the JLP, which won 51 of the 60 lower-house seats. This gave Seaga a mandate for a return to a renewal of links with the USA and an emphasis on free enterprise. He severed diplomatic links with Cuba in 1981. In 1983 Seaga called an early, snap election. The opposition claimed they had been given insufficient time to nominate their candidates and the JLP won all 60 seats. There were violent demonstrations when the new parliament was inaugurated, and the PNP said it would continue its opposition outside the parliamentary arena.

PNP dominance: 1989–2007
Manley and the PNP returned to power with a landslide victory in the 1989 general election, but Manley pursued more moderate economic policies than in the 1970s, with some success, and worked for improved relations with the USA. In 1992, with his health deteriorating, Manley resigned as premier and was replaced by Percival Patterson, the former finance minister. In a snap general election, held in 1993, Patterson increased the PNP’s majority, winning 52 of the 60 lower-house seats. From 1991, the PNP government followed a programme of economic liberalization, including removing exchange controls, floating the exchange rate, reducing tariffs, removing restrictions on foreign investment, and privatizing state enterprises. This helped bring the inflation rate down from 80% in 1990 to 7% in 1998 and there was steady economic growth until the mid-1990s.

In 1995, the JLP was weakened when its chairman, Bruce Golding, broke away with colleagues to form a new centrist party, the National Democratic Movement (NDM). This enabled Patterson to secure two further unprecedented consecutive victories, routing the JLP in December 1997 and narrowly winning the October 2002 general election.

But in 2002 Golding rejoined the JLP, to become its chair again in 2003. Meanwhile, Patterson stepped down as prime minister in February 2006 and the local government minister Portia Simpson-Miller was elected head of the PNP and Jamaica’s first female prime minister.

In September 2007, the JLP, under the leadership of Bruce Golding, returned to power, narrowly defeating the PNP by 32 seats to 28.(elicon Publishing is division of RM).

The problem is not in winning elections as can be seen from that report published by Elicon publishing, one needs to look at the disconnect between winning elections through catchy jingles and hooks, and actually doing the grunge work of Governing and producing results.

With the exception of the period from 1991 to the mid 1990’s  under Percival James Patterson,  there is not much to point to . Patterson adopted conservative strategies  of  removing  exchange controls, floating the exchange rates, reducing tariffs, removing restrictions on foreign investments and divesting some State holdings. this move saw inflation plummet  from 80% in 1990 to 7% in 1998 and there was steady economic growth until the mid-1990s.The achilees heel of Patterson however is that he had no idea how to control the monster of corruption and crime.The PNP even though having been  the belle of the ball as it relates to Jamaican politics really has not delivered much in the way of tangible accomplishments to the Jamaican people, who for some strange reason seem to favor them to the JLP.

It is interesting to see Miller unwittingly acknowledging that in the past the party has been all about winning elections. quote: “Opposition parties are always faced with the temptation of crafting programmes for vote-getting. I thank the team for resisting the formulation of empty promises, quick fixes and populist sloganeering,” .

You don’t say ? Populist sloganeering ? Are these the same things as.

Better must come.

My father born ya.

power comrades:

lick them wid de rad of carrection:

Jamaica a pnp country.

Time for a change.

Democratic socialism.

Are we to believe the PNP has gone through a metamorphosis , ? Are we to believe that they have repented as Michael Manley did after the debacle of the 70’s ? As we have said in previous blogs, Populism cannot run a country , despite all of the tears and hugs of the Party president her constituency remains one of the most depressed in the country despite her many years in representational politics.

I am not an economist, subsequently I will allow the them to critique this newest slogan  ” PROGRESSIVE AGENDA” .

I would imagine that fiscal prudence, deregulation, competence,lack of corruption, greater transparency,respect, humility,accountability,and an appreciation for the fact that campaigning and governing are different. Most importantly the rule of law must take precedent over everything  Moving the country from one of man to a country of laws. That includes the bedrock principle of support for those who toil to make the country safe.

Nothing coming from the President of the PNP indicates that she even understands the need to empower the rule of law, which is a necessary characteristic, if crime and terror is to be contained, a necessary component if the country is to be competitive in attracting manufacturing and other investment opportunities.

Harvesting mangoes and processing them though admirable, and intuitive, is not going to be enough if our people are to compete going forward.

mike beckles:

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