Wilson: ‘We Look Forward To Being Independent’

June 6, 2012 | 95 Comments

“We look forward to one day ultimately sitting at the table with the other nations of the world as a confident, economically prosperous, politically stable, still beautiful and independent Bermuda,” said Attorney-General and Minister of Justice Kim Wilson during a recent speech in Ecuador.

Minister Wilson was speaking in the Senate today [June 6], providing an overview of her attendance and speech she delivered at the United Nations Seminar on Decolonization recently held in Ecuador.

Bermuda presented a discussion paper at the Conference on the current position of Bermuda as it relates to independence in order to assist the UN in making a realistic analysis and evaluation of each Non Self Governing Territory. The Attorney General’s Chambers previously noted that funding for the trip was borne by the United Nations.

“As a society that prides itself on the value we place on democracy, we are equally committed to the democratic process of ensuring that we will consult with and be guided by the will of the majority by way of referendum before independence will take place,” said Minister Wilson.

“We established the Bermuda Independence Commission in December 2004. Its mandate was to thoroughly explore the subject of independence through broad consultation and to present a report to the public in a way that was understandable to everyone.

“This culminated in the August 2005 Report of the Bermuda Independence Commission. Among other things it gave critical insight into what informs public sentiment about independence.

“The sentiments that fueled aversion included: The perceived ill-fate of other small countries that have gone independent including the debt load they subsequently incurred to upgrade their infrastructure; that freeing local government from UK control would threaten its integrity; and that international business as a pillar of our economy would flee our jurisdiction as a result.

“Those in favour of independence cited: Bermuda’s inherent lack of democracy under the present arrangement; restrictions Bermuda currently faces to advance its national interests; past colonial abuses and lingering inequities against the Black population that independence would help to resolve; and the power imbalance and subjugation to the UK in the existing relationship which in turn discernibly risks stagnation and ultimate demise.

“And yet while the dream of independence persists if temporarily deferred, our Government’s present cue from our people is that this pursuit is not a current top priority,” said Minister Wilson. “However, like all self-respecting peoples Bermudians aspire to national sovereignty as an integral part of our destiny beyond our present circumstances.”

“We are appreciative of the work of the UN in supporting us toward our unwavering aspiration. We look forward to one day ultimately sitting at the table with the other nations of the world as a confident, economically prosperous, politically stable, still beautiful and independent Bermuda.”

Minister Wilson’s full statement follows below:

Madam President, I would like the provide to this Honorable Senate an overview of my recent attendance by invitation of the United Nations to represent Bermuda at a decolonization conference held on May 30,2012 to June 2, 2012 in Quito Ecuador.

The United Nations Pacific Regional Seminar on the implementation of the Third International Decade for the eradication of colonialism was held last week. The seminar was held in support of the commitment of the United Nations as it regards national sovereignty as one of the basic fundamental human rights.

As such, the 16 remaining non self-governing territories were invited to attend to provide to the Special Committee the views of their respective Countries so as to assist the UN in identifying policy approaches and practical ways that they can peruse in the UN decolonization process. Bermuda, like the other countries represented, presented a discussion paper on the current position of Bermuda as it relates to independence in order to assist the UN in making a realistic analysis and evaluation of each Non Self Governing Territory.

Allow me to present to this Senate the speech that I had the privilege of presenting to the UN General Assembly’s Pacific Regional Seminar in Quito, Equator on the 31st of May 2012.

It has been modified primarily to be directed to this body for the purpose of its presentation while retaining its essence. I deliver it accordingly as follows, and I quote:

“I am grateful for your invitation and the opportunity to appear before this Committee on behalf of the Government of Bermuda to address the issue of its UN mandate for the ‘eradication of colonialism’ as pertains to Bermuda.

“Let me begin with taking special note of that mandate itself. It should be further noted that this purpose (the commitment to decolonization as a noble aspiration), is rooted in values shared by the current Government of Bermuda. From its inception our platform has never wavered from the cause of the independence of our people.

“As a society that prides itself on the value we place on democracy, we are equally committed to the democratic process of ensuring that we will consult with and be guided by the will of the majority which may be by way of referendum before independence will take place.

There is an implied duty in the latter commitment.

“It places an onus upon us the elected representatives of the people to govern so as to prepare them for this eventuality and to embolden them to seize the opportunity as it presents itself to realize that goal.

“Let me digress by relaying a bit of the political backdrop to Bermuda’s unique circumstances. The current Government is led by the oldest political party in Bermuda having been founded in 1963 on a platform rooted in advocating for the cause of the common man and woman and ensuring that as a priority, endemic racial discrimination was eradicated from our society.

“We are a society comprised primarily of formerly enslaved Black peoples of African descent accounting for approximately 60% of our population; with whites (of English and Portuguese descent primarily) accounting for over 30% of the remainder; and a small minority of peoples from the full spectrum of humanity comprising the balance.

Ironically, in the aftermath of Hong Kong’s reversion to the People’s Republic of China on July 1, 1997; with just under seventy thousand (70,000) inhabitants Bermuda by default became the oldest and the numerically largest of the 14 remaining non-independent territories of the former British Empire.

“This status is in even more stark contrast to our cumulative geographical size of only 54 square kilometers or just under 22 square miles. We are one of the most remotely inhabited land masses in the world with the closest neighbor the United States being 700 miles north-west of us. Statistically, Bermuda’s per capita gross domestic product of approximately $70,000US annually puts us in the rank of the fourth highest material standard of living in the world. Our economic drivers are international companies (insurance, re-insurance and finance) and a domestic tourist industry.

“Reverting to the subject of good governance and preparation of the Bermudian people for the eventuality of Independence; since coming to power in 1998 the present government has done much in that regard. We have sought to learn the lessons of Bermuda’s 1995 defeated referendum on independence under a previous government.

“It taught us first and foremost that preparation of the people (and indeed the people themselves) are not to be taken for granted nor is such a nationally consequential decision to be left up to electoral chance in spite of the electorate’s signaled aversion. It will have to be a concerted effort with hands on participation by the masses in the process itself and their strongly signaled endorsement of the cause of independence bolstered by their convictions as to the brighter future it will bring. This is indeed the challenge that the Government of the day is cognizant of and intent upon pursuing.

“Hence we established the Bermuda Independence Commission in December 2004. Its mandate was to thoroughly explore the subject of independence through broad consultation and to present a report to the public in a way that was understandable to everyone.

This culminated in the August 2005 Report of the Bermuda Independence Commission.

Among other things it gave critical insight into what informs public sentiment about independence. The sentiments that fueled aversion included: The perceived ill-fate of other small countries that have gone independent including the debt load they subsequently incurred to upgrade their infrastructure; that freeing local government from UK control would threaten its integrity; and that international business as a pillar of our economy would flee our jurisdiction as a result.

“Those in favour of independence cited: Bermuda’s inherent lack of democracy under the present arrangement; restrictions Bermuda currently faces to advance its national interests; past colonial abuses and lingering inequities against the Black population that independence would help to resolve; and the power imbalance and subjugation to the UK in the existing relationship which in turn discernibly risks stagnation and ultimate demise.

Moving forward the existing government has worked extensively with domestic international businesses to ensure that our jurisdiction remains profitable for them to continue to do business within Bermuda.

“Accordingly, we recently enacted the Incentives for Job Makers Act 2011 and all indications from that sector (as indeed business acumen dictates), is that they will continue to avail themselves of the profits of doing business in Bermuda independent or not, for as long as conditions remain favorable. We have witnessed social and economic advancement as well as political stability of other most comparable jurisdictions that have gone independent such as Barbados, Bahamas, St. Lucia and Trinidad and Tobago.

“Some of our competitive advantages are our developed economy, world-class infrastructure, tested Constitution and political stability. Additionally, we are beholden to retaining the Privy Council as our final court of appeal and the UK has granted entrustments for us to have limited engagement with the United States to enter into tax and mutual legal assistance treaties.

“These in turn augment Bermuda’s legislative preparation to carry on as an independent nation when that eventuality proves feasible. The process leading up to our historic 1995 independence referendum saw the passage of the Independence Referendum Act 1995 which sets out the parameters and particulars for conducting an independence referendum.

“It has since been augmented by the recently tabled Referendum Act 2012 outlining more generally comprehensive measures for conducting referenda in Bermuda. In between we have constitutionally established the offices of Ombudsman and Auditor General to see to the proper administration of the civil service and acceptable management of government’s finances.

“In the meantime, our government has turned its attention to the most immediately pressing needs of our people. In the aftermath of the global economic downturn, Bermuda has not been unscathed.

“For the first time in living memory we are contending with unemployment at a rate that (while enviable by most standards), is shocking to a generation that had the luxury of taking for granted surplus employment opportunities with a traditionally strong demand for employees from outside our shores to keep apace. Government revenue has also suffered the consequences of this happenstance necessitating increased borrowing that again while comparatively conservative, has further challenged general sensibilities about the health of the economy.

To further reassure our people and to instill confidence in political leadership our Government has taken up the gauntlet to implement certain measures including passage of the Good Governance Act 2011. We have also made concessions with our expatriate population and the exempt business community to continue to make Bermuda an enviable jurisdiction in which to do business.

“We are cognizant of the fact that the trying circumstances we face demand good leadership and commitment to safeguarding our economic well-being; which in turn will bolster the confidence of our people toward eventually assuming the responsibilities of a sovereign state.

“I would be remiss as pertains to the issue at hand if I did not mention the British Overseas Territories Act 2002. This enactment of the United Kingdom’s Parliament has ramifications for Bermuda that cannot be overstated. Our designation as a ‘British Dependent Territory’ was changed to “British Overseas Territory”.

“Furthermore, in consequence of that Act Bermudians who were formerly technically stateless (as we were citizens of no sovereign state), joined the ranks of the inhabitants of Gibraltar and the Falkland Islands to become full citizens of the United Kingdom. Today, no holes are barred to Bermudians who wish to fully participate in British society. As such, it now has to be taken into consideration that a move towards independence would confront the people of Bermuda with the issue of relinquishing or retaining their newly acquired British citizenship.

“I would like to conclude by pointing out that from our Government’s perspective Bermuda’s circumstances as relates to the issue of independence are unique; as are necessarily the challenges of the UN’s Special Committee in supporting us in that regard. Viewed from a compelling vantage point, we are indeed stragglers in the great decolonization movement ushered in after the Second World War and generally culminating around the decade of the 1960s. We have been spared both the turbulence and upheaval that that process entailed for many societies, as much as we are now denied the inertia of its momentous zeal.

“Indeed, Bermuda no longer carries the full stigma or exacting limitations of the label ‘colony’ as our very relationship with the United Kingdom has changed. We have been afforded the benefit of a time-tested Constitution which provides for a semi-autonomous internal government. We boast an enviable economy, world class infrastructure and a stable government that is periodically elected.

“In short, our circumstances present the people of Bermuda with having to grapple with a status quo suggesting that we have much to lose depending upon the choices we make, as we are equally challenged to formulate a compelling vision of what is to be gained by standing on our own.

“And yet while the dream of independence persists if temporarily deferred, our Government’s present cue from our people is that this pursuit is not a current top priority. However, like all self-respecting peoples Bermudians aspire to national sovereignty as an integral part of our destiny beyond our present circumstances.

“Finally, we are appreciative of the work of the UN in supporting us toward our unwavering aspiration. We look forward to one day ultimately sitting at the table with the other nations of the world as a confident, economically prosperous, politically stable, still beautiful and independent Bermuda.”

Madam President, It was an honour for me to present this message to an international body at this juncture in our history. I am pleased to say that it was well received and I trust that it accurately and sincerely captures the facts as well as the sentiments of Bermuda generally as pertains to the issue of independence.

Thank you Madam President.

-

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  1. Old Furberts kettle says:

    That day will never come. the country is already a whisker away from going running to the IMF or the UK for a loan. This administration could not run a bath.

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    • Barracuda says:

      +1

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      • WellSaid says:

        +2

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        • yeesh says:

          +3

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          • Yup says:

            +4 Bermuda is bankrupt. How can a financial basket case afford independence.

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            • Yup says:

              +5 Step 1: Bankrupt Bermuda; Step 2: Take it to independence; Step 3: Govt floats the Bda dollar and plunders our reserve funds; Step 4 Watch the exodux; Step 6 Put bars on your window; Step 7 SUFFER.

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              • navin johnson says:

                +6 and you could not just say that "I and a few members of my socialist Government look forward blah blah blah..." clearly the ovewhelming majority of the real people do not want it and thats what you were suppossed to say....

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    • pepper says:

      old Furbert, I agree with you...and it is so sad that a few fools are running our island for their benifit......and to hell with you stupid Bermudians that think they are doing a good job !!!!!!!!!! Paula Cox has no clue what is going on here !!!!!!people can not pay their rent because they have no job.......... and they are stealing to feed their families!!!!! but our Premier and her party are traveling all over the world !!!!!!!for what? Paula Cox has to go she has no clue how the poor are suffering.....
      We all thought she would clean up the mess that Doc Brown left... but she has made it worse.................. this island has no chance of recovering under these fools.

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      • will says:

        you mean Her's and Doc Brown's mess, it was her who signed all the accounts for him, she handled all the finances for the party...but of course she won't own up to any of it..

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        • Yup says:

          COG signed a deal with the devil. Now the chickens are coming home to roost. This is classic.

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        • concerned says:

          premier cox publicly stated that she could not say 'NO' to the man - pahleese and he supposedly is going to make a come back. I truly believe the man has never let go of the reins - all of these people are pawns to him. They better ask the Lord to open their eyes to this nonsense and repent of their wicked ways because it is not until then thata he shall hear the cries of His people.

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    • As Bermuda sinks! says:

      +4

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    • Tolerate says:

      Save us U.K. this woman speaks only for herself and her Party. Bermuda has spoken and it is not our wishes as AG Wilson has portrayed. This is betrayal at its greatest by a once respectable member of Government.
      PLP has lost my vote!
      My apologies to Bermuda for being a part of the voting population who voted them in from the beginning. “Fool me once, shame on you, fool me twice, shame on me”.

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  2. Kathy says:

    Here we go again...

    Does anyone in this government know that they have the full right to live and work in Europe right now? Do they know that their children and grandchildren have this right, which will be stripped from them FOREVER if Bermuda goes independent? Why wasn't this listed in the "list of cons" above? I would call this a rather LARGE con. Do they want to remove this "opportunity" from all future generations?

    If the answer is "yes" (just for the sake of anti-colonialism and sovereignty) then they are not the intelligent bunch I might have otherwise thought them to be.

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    • Tolerate says:

      Kathy, its unreal what individuals will lower themselves to just to achieve a personal goal? The fact that Bermuda stand strong on it existing ties; it is criminal to suggest during these challenging times to make such dumb decisions. I stated this bellow on the RG.
      @ Mister Wolf, not sure HOW you did not see this coming? I have spoke on this considerably and engaged in conversation with other bloggers on the same point on RG and Bernews when-
      1. The new Referendum Legislation on how to introduce Referendums was table by Premier Cox.
      2. The notification AG Wilson was to speak at the U.N. Meeting on Independence.
      As I filter over the comments made by AG Wilson, there are great points the AG has made on the initial majority objection in 1995 and the changes regarding Rights of Full Citizens in 2002. AG Wilson is correct in her research on the lack of education to the public prior to the 1995 vote, but that is the extent of which I can agree.
      The statement she made on “while many Bermudians aspire to the PLP’s long-standing goal of national sovereignty, others are concerned they have much to lose from breaking ties with the UK” is incorrect. What the AG fails to fully mention is that a 76% voted AGAINST!!! This does not translate into MANY Bermudians aspiring for Independence. In fact, it has only been a long term goal for individuals; and not even a majority by the Polls, of people in HER PARTY.
      Since Bermuda is made up of more than individuals in her party, it is misleading to insinuate many Bermuda aspire to HER PARTIES long standing goal.
      @Shooter, it’s not weak to have common sense and stand by your convictions. It is BRAVE to have a mind of your own and your own thoughts. A minority of Bermudian agree with your side of the argument so I feel confident in my decision, as most Bermudians with half a brain, understand the world we live in today and the importance of the ties we share with Britain.
      You want to live in an Independent country, leave…. Because the majority of us are quite fine with our present arrangement.
      Once again the PLP is making my decision on who to vote for in the upcoming election easier.

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    • Thatkidatoxford says:

      Why is living and working in Europe so important? We can live and work here in Bermuda. Why give our time and effort to support another economy when we can help our own?

      Also, if we went independent, I don't think it would be impossible to live and work in Europe. Yes, it may be harder, but not impossible.

      I just don't think everyone has a deep desire to live and work in Europe.

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  3. cox must go says:

    I agree, this is just electioneering to make the "Worker" feel he will have more say in BDA, after the election Senator Wilson and PLP will tell us that we must pay down debt and get AAA sovereign credit rating before we can even consider Independence, and to pay down Cog's $1.4 Billion in spending we will have to sell Bermuda to foreign investors in Dubai, Africa, Singapore and of course CHINA - so we will be independent from UK and become slaves to the people who put the money up for the first 3 Casinos and this Monaco Super Boat Port they keep saying is gonna be built on Front street

    Bottom Line Bermuda, Cox Must Go

    Cox must Go

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  4. jt says:

    “We look forward to one day ultimately sitting at the table with the other nations of the world as a confident, economically prosperous, politically stable, still beautiful and independent Bermuda,” said Attorney-General and Minister of Justice Kim Wilson during a recent speech in Ecuador

    The first 4 of those descriptors are gone or going. The final one is not wanted by the vast majority of the populace.

    Who is "we"? Surely she does not presume to speak for Bermudians as she knows that they do not want independence.

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  5. Grouper says:

    This is not a country. It is a 21 sq. mile Island in the middle of the Atlantic Ocean with a population less than most mid-sized towns in the US and Europe. It does not manufacture anything except babies, water and cement. It has to import most of its food, all wearing apparel, motor vehicles, oil, building materials (except sand), appliances, computers, furniture, paper, utensils, pharmaceuticals, boats, etc. etc.. Thinking that we are equal to nations that have large poulations, large natural resources and large land ares with huge multifaceted economies is just simply crazy. I think we need a serious reality check! Up until now I thought the Hon. Kim Wilson was a sensible lady. Not no more!

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    • Enforcer says:

      We do not manufacture cement. It's imported as well!

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    • cow polly says:

      + 1 on that cuz

      All of this 'country this' and 'nation that' started with JWS and Pam Gordon and someone should have slapped them in the chops back then. Such unmitigated delusions of grandeur.
      It's always entertaining how our great politicos often start out making a statement designed to inflate the egos of the insecure with 'country' or 'nation' and then slip up and revert to 'island'.

      As someone I know likes to ask , I wonder what they would think if the weather girl said on tv one night 'a strong cold front is approaching the country from the north west' ? hahaha

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    • Thatkidatoxford says:

      But this is not our permanent state. This can change. I think we have the ability to produce and export. Yes, it will take effort and careful planning as we have limited land but we also have plenty of sea as well. I just think we'll have to be more creative to make our unique situation work for us. Don't give up on Bermuda just yet. We'll get there.

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  6. Grouper says:

    "...confident, economically prosperous, politically stable, still beautiful Bermuda until the PLP came to power and ruined it all..."

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  7. Opressed says:

    Another embarrassment to this Island. Please be gone, the whole lot of you!

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  8. Itsaboutallofus says:

    Well said and well delivered Madame AG!

    One day we will have the confidence and pride to govern ourselves without having to rely on Mommy England as our backup.

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    • C.B.A says:

      Obviously you never benefited from lower fees in a UK university or from working in Europe.

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      • Thatkidatoxford says:

        If we had our own university in Bermuda, we wouldn't have to worry about UK university fees.

        Why do we need to work in Europe? And, even if we decide to invest our time and efforts into a community besides our own, I don't think it would be impossible to work in Europe after we go independent. Harder, maybe, but not impossible.

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    • WillSee says:

      Its about trust,not confidence!

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      • proudbermudian says:

        That's right, TRUST, something this lame a-- Government has never had from me. Although I like Kim Wilson, I just think she's trying something again. Do you notice every time there's an election nearby, this issue comes up! Have a damned referendum and get this over with!

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    • SHOWANAX says:

      We might have the confidence and pride someday....but where will we get the MONEY to buy out as you say Mommy England? This government certainly hasn't shown that it can save up the necessary money to do so. Independence comes with a price tag. LITERALLY.

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    • Unbelievable says:

      “Those in favour of independence cited….past colonial abuses and lingering inequities against the Black population that independence would help to resolve;”

      Right now I think that we as Blacks need to start by resolving the issues we currently have with our own people. More specific, how in the HELL can we expect Independence to fix shit that had no relevance on the lives we are living right now,in 2012, when we have BLACK CHILDREN that can't even play on the other side of the street of their own friggin neighborhoods, let alone travel to another damn parish, and WE CAN'T EVEN GET THIS SHIT SORTED THE HELL OUT!!!!
      ARRRGGGGHHHH - to much ruffling my friggin feathers this morning....
      KIM I had the utmost respect for you but after this I think I need to rethink that position!!!! Go lay down please with the Independant BS!!!

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  9. Pelican says:

    If Sen Wilson is serious about having an open and broad consultative process about independence, there needs to be more objective language used in the discussion. I note the turns of phrase: "The sentiments that fueled aversion" (to independence) vs. "Those in favour of independence". This language immediately polarizes different points of view and elevates those holding a positive view of independence to a higher status.
    I also remind Sen Wilson that in making the statement "However, like all self-respecting peoples Bermudians aspire to national sovereignty as an integral part of our destiny beyond our present circumstance." she does take a liberty in speaking for all Bermudians, when she is full aware that this is not necessarily the majority sentiment. She could state this as the Govt's position, but not as "the people's voice".
    I did not see mention of a "referendum" in her statement.......and this is one of the reasons it is difficult to believe that this Govt is truly committed to an open debate on the subject.

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    • I gotta be me says:

      Exactly! Who do I write to in the U.N. to dispute Kim Wilson's statement. I don't want the U.N. believing all this BS.

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    • really? says:

      It is the "people's voice" when it suits them. Otherwise it does not matter what the people think. You have ministers who have the arrogance to state publicly that they only answer to the Premier, obviously the "people's voice" does not count on that ministry's issues. Also the only people that will be allowed to travel to these countries will be the politicians. Bermudians will most likely not qualify for visas once they are independent. Right now the only reason they do is the connection with the UK. The US wont be allowing a lot of Bermudians in. The risk will be too great for them trying to stay in the US illegally. The thought that independence is freedom is fine, if you live in a place that takes you longer than 30 mintes to get from one end to the other. We will not have the freedom to travel whenever anymore. You can only apply for a visa once a year(to the US at least). This Government is not open enough to be trusted to lead this island to independence. If it isnt broke don't fix it!! I do not see us Being surpressed by England. I do not see the Governor or the Queen taking over the Island's rule. I see a self serving Government ruining a beautiful place so someone could be called the King or Queen of Bermuda!

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  10. TheFuture says:

    One thing politicians have done successfully is to persuade the common person that independence relates exclusively to politics. Question: in what ways is Bermuda currently dependent? And what is the plan to take Bermuda away from that dependence? A flag changing exercise will not rid you of being economically dependent, spiritually dependent, socially dependent, militarily dependent...the list goes on.

    Political independence itself is even a farce in that most many small nations choose their former political masters to become heads of state. Lastly, it is better to be socially independent (directing you social institution's agendas and not being dictated to my mass media and outside interests) and economically independent (even the PLP are becoming aware that political power has strings pulled by economic powers and if they make policy that differs, the rug will be pulled from under their feet...leaving them with nothing worth governing).

    Don't be suckered into this one dimensional independence nonsense. You need no one's permission to be socially and economically independent, although politicians egos won't be massaged in that situation.

    The PLP supporters already have a preview of the letdown that is inevitable from mismatched priority on politics over social and economic sovereignty. Without economic power, you are chumps. Without morality, who wants to do business without anyway?

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  11. Thinking Aloud says:

    An admiral wish, but let's look at Going Independent 101.

    Get the people behind you - Fail (at least you have admitted this)
    Be Financially Independent - Fail. $1.4 billion and increasing debt makes Bermuda totally dependent on the whims of International lenders. Until this debt is almost paid off, any lender will increase rates with Independence and the debt load will be unsupportable.

    Can the PLP please concentrate on the important issue and that is getting the financial stability back. Forget Independence, licencing pit bulls and challenges to the leadership and all these other distractions. Bermudians want to see a responsible and effective Government again.

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  12. This has be the scariest thing I have heard, And let me guess who wants to be the first ruler of Bermuda, anybody have any guesses?

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  13. Pitts Bay says:

    "economically prosperous, politically stable,"

    Not under your government I am afraid !!!

    The proof is in the pudding....

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  14. Chardonnay says:

    Re the headline, it should be edited it to read "We Look Forward to Being Independent of the PLP". Dependence on this incompetent bunch for the last 13 years has driven our economy into the ground. Get real people. We need the right to live in the U.K. now more than ever. Good grief, we even export our single mothers and their kids to go and live off the British taxpayer - and that's about the only export we have. Senator Wilson, you disappoint us. Let it be know you do not speak for the majority in Bermuda - we voted down independence before and we will vote it down again. We need the UK more than ever in these tough times, plain and simple. Stop playing roulette with our future and that of our grandchildren.

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  15. Redman says:

    “We look forward to one day ultimately sitting at the table with the other nations of the world as a confident, economically prosperous, politically stable, still beautiful and independent Bermuda,”

    Well the confident, economically prosperous part of this spiel will never happen as long as this PLP runs Bermuda!!

    Good Luck trying to float that wreck, heck they can't even get their own supporters to back them with that red herring!! Certainly the PLP's dismal handling of the Government and the economy means they have set their Independence agenda back in Bermuda by at least 30 years!!

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  16. Concerned says:

    This is horrifying. This island is going straight to hell. Every day I wish to do more for this place only to see nothing could come out of it.

    What the hell is going on in her head?

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  17. terry says:

    Don't even have to read all the comments.
    Headline speaks for itsself.
    You tell um Ewart.
    Howard rules.

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  18. terry says:

    By any means neccessary; and we had to decieve you.

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  19. Joonya says:

    Really? And what will we be sitting at the table with? A bottle of Black Seal and The Gombeys?!?
    Please, you lot have set us back years. We need some serious damage control first thank you.

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  20. no entiendo says:

    Where is the kool aid?

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  21. Truth is killin' me... says:

    SPEAK FOR YOURSELF KIM WILSON!

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  22. Grouper says:

    Is it just me..this speech sounds like it could have been written by Dr. Brown....

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  23. navin johnson says:

    What a shame this Government does not have the courage to put their money where their mouth is....run at the next election on Independence....if the people do not want it you will go away.....thought so...no guts because you want the money...we the people do not want independence and certainly not with the PLP at the wheel///how about it Kim......make independence your platform put up or shut up......

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  24. M.P.Mountbatten JP says:

    Speak for yourself Lady . Question , Independent from Who ? I'd love to be independent from the container ship that brings in our overpriced goods from abroad , But guess what ? I gotta live with it as a fact of life .

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  25. Family Man says:

    Why is it that these People who are Lacking Principles run off to tell otehr countries their ideas but say nothing to Bermuda? Are they afraid their half-a$$ed ideas would be seen for exactly what they are here?

    First we have Paula & Ewart mouthing off in the Caymans about the Governor and his silly hats an now we have Kim telling everyone in Ecuador how "We look forward to one day [being] economically prosperous" and independent. By "we" I have to assume she means the 21% of Bermuda that wants independence and not the 73% that do not want to be independent.

    We were far more prosperous 14 years ago than we are today. Are these the people you really want taking us to independence?

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  26. Baltic Fury says:

    And good luck with that expensive visa application every time you go golfing in Florida or shopping in Jersey. Special dispensation? You mean like every other former British Caribbean country, oh that's right they don't get any. They lose their passport, and their ease of travel. And we pay Kim Wilson? I honestly thought she was better than this, but this is a DUMB speech that reminds me of another slick fool we worked hard to push out of power.

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    • Thatkidatoxford says:

      So if we invested more in Bermuda so that we could compete with golfing in Florida and shopping in Jersey, you would support independence?

      Yes, we may lose our ease of travel but is that really that bad? Plenty of other countries manage just fine without our ease of travel. I think we may gain a lot more from becoming independent that easily compensates for losing our travel benefits.

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  27. Floats says:

    This woman is all style and no substance, and this an ill-informed speech. Don't the PLP get it? We don't want Independence!

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  28. Rockfish #2 says:

    What! The taxpayer paid for her to spread this propaganda?

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  29. James Goodfellow says:

    Minister Wilson you are a fool.

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  30. SMH says:

    Sometimes no amount of education will remove ignorance. This government wants to make history. Hilarious that my grandchildren will one day be reading about the worst government Bermuda has experienced. Sad that they will also have no future here. Get your British passport while you still can!

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    • Goose says:

      That'll be taken right away were we to go independent. You don't own your passport, the Crown does.

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      • Thatkidatoxford says:

        Why is having a British passport important? Plenty of other countries are getting on fine without them. I don't think it's the case of "having a British passport" or "not being able to travel". Yes, it may be a little harder but it won't be impossible. If it's submitting a Visa application that you don't want to do, then that's a different conversation.

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  31. will says:

    and what are the positive consequences of becoming independent..all i see is negatives..she wants to join the UN fair enough, we are already a guest member so thats certainly good enough for a collective of small islets within 21sq miles..we cant support ourselves with food and other basic needs thats all imported and how the hell are we going to find $25mil a year to pay our membership fee to the UN. our debt is skyrocketing and she is only thinking of Bermudians having to pay more for travel, education and everything else! but i guess she will be gone by then anyway, just another one for the history books she is.

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  32. Carla Rose Louise Wilkinson says:

    LOL!. Just another dang puppet talking absolute nonsense. Poor Kim! Did she even read that drivel first? Don't these people get tired? Can we all just get rid of these clowns and be Independent of the P.L.P once and for all? Enough already!

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  33. Crystal Cave says:

    I would entertain the idea if somebody (the Minister perhaps) could give me one (just one) advantage of going independent.

    National pride, finally out of slavery, and such emotional rubbish doesn't count. I'm talking a real advantage that is measurable.

    Of course I won't get a reasonable answer, because there isn't one - there's just the above emotional garbage.

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  34. Pat says:

    This is crazy! Bermuda keep a watchful eye. The Derrick Burgess debacle is the biggest smoke screen we have seen to date. Ewart Brown is still in control and is putting things and people in place for his return. An independent Bermuda! That is the biggest joke of this century. We weren't able to accomplish independence during the good times, so how would we be able to afford it now? Don't be deceived into thinking that independence means a better life for Bermudians. How many Bermudians are presently unemployed? There is no hard facts reported and that is by design because we have to deceive you. Paula Cox is only holding the reins until Ewart Brown gets his plan in full gear. Once complete, Paula will be yanked off the stage like the puppet that she is. Derrick Burgess accidentally raised the lid of the pressure pot. If we don't pay attention, we will wake up one day and find that we are independent and the dictator will emerge. Stay vigilante.

    If you think it is a joke, look at the make up of the new Corporation of Hamilton! Donal Smith as Deputy Mayor?
    Hmmm, if you can't beat em, join em and take over. It is all about the money. Hypocrites who would waste taxpayer funds to go to the Queen's Diamond Jubilee While the are doing their best to cut ties with the UK. Derrick Burgess didn't want to accept honors from the Queen yet he goes to the celebration to save face? Really!

    These people need to go now or we will live to regret it.

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  35. Disgusted says:

    More rubbish! VOTE OBA! VOTE. OBA!

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  36. Mad Dawg says:

    What an utterly clueless woman.

    Ironic it comes after another junket to rub shoulders with royalty.

    All the things this country needs, and they keep banging on that stupid idea.

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  37. Liars! says:

    can someone please tell these PLP Fools to stop with all the President crap.......please no more PLP and lets get back to making m,oney...

    However l bet, that if the OBA got into power for four years....the deficet would be gone enough just for the PEE L PEE to come back and spend it like crack heads.

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  38. Crystal Cave says:

    Up until now, I thought the lady was fairly intelligent.

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  39. Liars! says:

    Ecuador.....Really?..... Ecuador, WTF do they care of your stupid irrelevant dreams KIM? oooh better watch ourselves bid Attorney General might have long arms.......I wanna know what WOMAN they are going to replace Burgess with,,,hahaha

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  40. R you serious!!! says:

    +5......I Pray that that day is no time soon!!!!!!!

    Mrs. Wilson; "Are you serious"???

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  41. sandgrownan says:

    Yup...not the sharpest knife in the drawer is she?

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  42. LIGHTBULB says:

    We need find a way to get the Ministers who are supposed to be speaking on behalf of all Bermudians to allow us to read their speeches before they go international with them.

    She is not talking about how I am feeling.

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  43. J Galt says:

    "Those in favour of independence cited....past colonial abuses and lingering inequities against the Black population that independence would help to resolve;"

    Can someone expand on the past colonial abuses and the inquities against the Black population that independence will resolve?

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  44. bermuda says:

    Kim Wilson ..independent u can't tell what's going on and how much we benifit from not being independent..you can't even handle the economy neither the violence with help of UK now u want to be greedy n try to make the island independent...

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  45. street wise says:

    There are no logical reasons to go Independent. Over 70% of the Bda population are against it and have been for decades. With Independence we would lose significant privileges to live, work, and educate our children in Great Britain, and travel & work in the E.U.

    The only perceived benefits of Independence are purely emotional, and apply almost exclusively to our black brothers and sisters. Unfortunately, if Bda went Independent these folks would be the first to suffer the consequences. Particularly if the good Doctor was involved!

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  46. street wise says:

    “Those in favour of independence cited ... past colonial abuses and lingering inequities against the Black population that independence would help to resolve.”

    The only abuses and lingering inequities against the black population are mostly self-induced and usually involve dysfunctional family issues and education.

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  47. joe says:

    In Ecuador?

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  48. LOL says:

    Who's 'we'? The polls have been consistently at 75% against for several years.

    Oh wait, an election is coming. Time to beat 'that' drum again.....

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  49. LOL (original TM*) says:

    Can anyone guarantee that going independent would not crash the value of our dollar and greatly diminish our spending power overseas thus causing major issues such as higher prices (if that’s even possible) hunger, a much lower standard of living (something the PLP seem to want for our people, except those that call themselves our politicians). If our dollar is devalued would not our credit rating take a nose dive then our loans would get called in and then what? All this for independence now? I think our debt needs to be severely diminished before we even think about this, also the rite of recall for our politicians cause once we go independent we will only be able to do some thing about our new 'gods' will only come every 4 years or so.

    LOL
    I do not trust the government with all that power....

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  50. Tommy Chong says:

    So the only thing in Bermuda that plp doesn't have 100% control of while we are still a colony is the police force. Makes me wonder if their plans for independence coincide with having the same control method over the police here that other decolonized islands do. Bermudians should think about setting aside some bribe money just in case we go independent since this is the way police work in decolonized countries.

    Also I have to LMAO after reading that United Nations had a Seminar on Decolonization after they have colonized most of Europe. I don't think this a bad thing I just think its humorous that they think their reign is any different than the reign of a monarchy or empire over countries that didn't belong to them in the beginning.

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  51. Frank'N'Onions says:

    "I" don't look forward to being independent regardless of what our government ministers say. "I" for one enjoy the relationship between Bermuda and the UK - we get to play in their yard, and mommy keeps an eye on things in case little Mikey or Suzie have problems playing nice or sharing their toys.

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  52. skeptical says:

    http://www.un.org/en/decolonization/questions_answers.shtml

    This worries me! It seems that someone else is going to tell us what to do. I support the Premier of Montserrat when he told the committee to take his island off the list. Bermuda should have done the same!!

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  53. serenity now says:

    clearly the braids are too tight.............I am for independence but not at any cost. Right now we could not lead ourselves out of a paper bag. For Mrs. Wilson to put that on the agenda right now concidering were we are as a country shows ignorance, and a level of disconnect. She has stayed under the radar, and away from any major controversy so we have never heard her true feelings but has she emerges, we are noticing she has very little substance and lacks new ideas.

    she too is apart of the pupit regime. Serenity NOw!

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  54. navin johnson says:

    hopefully the volcano stays dormant if Montserrat goes independent.....

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  55. Bermyman says:

    Can anyone name an Independent Island with one of the highest GDP's in the world that is reasonably safe and politically stable??????

    Couple of issues with Independence:

    Corruption: If we were independent when Ewart was our leader, he would have been a dictator, would still be in power and there would have been blood on the streets.

    Currency: It is unlikely with our debt and without the sovereign backing of the U.K. that we would be able to retain our peg to the US dollar. If we loose that we will loose international business overnight.

    Immigration: Bermudians would need a Visa to go ANYWHERE in the world which will cost money and these Visas will be denied to some.

    Education: We would almost completely remove our ability to study on the U.K. and Canada. the 2 countries that most Bermudians go to for school. We have no credible university on the Island so how will anyone achieve worthwhile credentials?

    Policing: There would be undoubtedly be more corruption on the Police force without Cops from outside of Bermuda (UK) working here.

    Real Estate: People will leave this Island in droves due to the uncertainty, accompanying that the currency change would leave our houses de-valued compared the rest of the developed world. So the 800k condo you bought in 2007 would be worth a hell of a lot less.

    Banking: again, less business and poor currency- say no more.

    To even contemplate Independence and then blame it on current racial inequality is so far fetched and emotionally charged. It lack common sense and in the end could spell ruin for a nation that has sustained itself against all odds since 1609.

    BERMUDA IS WHAT IT IS BECAUSE OF THE DECISIONS OF THE UK GOVERNMENT AND THE FORMER LEADERS OF THIS ISLAND. WE ARE A SUCCESS STORY, WHY?? AND HOW? 25 sq Miles and 60,000 people.

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    • Independent thinker says:

      I don't think the ability to study in the UK will be lost....it will just cost a whole heap more!

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  56. Really? says:

    CORRECTION KIM " YOU LOOK FORWARD TO BEING INDEPENDENT " me I like to travel with ease, but its okay Im Bermudian but have British background so they wont be taking my passport away. Have fun spending thousands of dollars around the Globe on Visas when you decide to step off this 21 miles...

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  57. bdagirl says:

    LOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOL

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  58. outsiDe man says:

    The second anyone refers to Bermuda as a country, they lose all credibility as far as I'm concerned.

    Currently, I live and work in the UK. I saved up some money, bought a one way ticket and found a job. I have also worked in Spain, Canada, America, and will be working in Poland this summer. Without a UK passport this would not have been possible.

    There is no benefit in going independent. Why would anyone want to be chained to Bermuda for the rest of their lives...

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  59. Wow, i am not Bermudian and i just want to weep for you guys. Can someone explain to me why this tiny little island has more ministers and government portfolios (some with dubious names) than anywhere else i can think of? Can someone explain to me the Bermudian psychic? I just don't understand your thought process. The ignorance is astonishing and frightening!

    All i can think of is the line from Redemption song: "Emancipate yourselves from MENTAL slavery, none but our selves can free our own mind"

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  60. navin johnson says:

    you get paid almost twice as much to have a portfolio....you also get paid twice as much to be a minister without portfolio(my personal favorite) Bermuda has more representatives per capita than almost anywhere in the world....comparitively the US congress would have almost 650,000 members to equal the proportional representation that Bermuda has......and they are part time.....nice gig.....

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  61. Jeff says:

    Does Bermuda deserve to have UK cititizenship? I don't think so. Please become independant.

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  62. Cavacroft says:

    There already is a brain drain, who will be left? How many with the welfare of ALL will return and be willing to serve in public office? Economics needs to be taught in primary school.

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