Column: “I Ain’t Voting, All Politicians The Same”

July 22, 2015

[Opinion column written by Chris Famous]

“I ain’t voting.” “All de politicians are the same.”

Both statements made frequently lately. At first listen, I wonder why anyone would even have this rationale? Then I remember there was a time many in my generation had those same thoughts two decades ago.

Heck, some in my present day generation still have these views.

I have voted in every election/referendum since 1995. I often ask myself, had my generation not voted in 1998, where would we be now?

Look around the island and let us say the UBP had remained in power :-

  • No Perimeter Lane housing
  • No Harbourview Village housing
  • No Loughlands housing
  • No One Man One Vote;
  • No Future Care for our parents;
  • No Heritage Wharf for Mega Cruise ships
  • No Sylvia Richardson Seniors Home;
  • No Dr. Cann Seniors Housing
  • No fast ferries;
  • No Lambe Foggo Clinic;
  • No relief from death tax;
  • No affordable DayCare allowance.

lamb-foggo-urgent-care-center collage

We are not alone

Many don’t fully understand politics, seemingly even some politicians. Many don’t give a flying flip about actions in the Senate or the House. Essentially most don’t keep up with the weekly ‘Igrance.’

What most, if not all Bermudians, are concerned about is having an equal opportunity in the island of our birth.

We are concerned about :-

  • Affordable public transportation
  • Healthcare for our parents.
  • Our children having a job when they return from university
  • Public education that will prepare our children for a changing future
  • That broken street light

With these concerns, each and every one of us have a vested interest in making sure our voices are heard and our representatives are doing as we wish them to do. We hold them accountable with our vote.

If anyone tells you oh do not worry about voting, ask yourselves why would they really tell you something like that?

Universal Adult Suffrage

Please ensure you and all those in your household are all registered properly. Ensure that each and every young persons that you know over the age of 18 is properly registered to vote.

If you have moved over the last 2 years you will need to re-register in your new constituency.

It is fairly easy to do online at this website: www.elections.gov.bm 

Not voting is unacceptable and counter-productive to the progress of all Bermudians. Take a few hours and watch the movie “Selma” to see what persons had to endure in order for everyone to have a chance to vote.

FT_15.03.05_selmaMontgomeryMLK

Less than 50 years ago many Bermudians were denied the right to vote. Many Bermudians died without ever having the fundamental right to vote. We owe those who fought for this right to vote much more than to say “I ain’t voting.”

ballot 2

- Chris Famous can be contacted via email at Carib_pro@yahoo.com or Twitter at @ryderz777

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Comments (75)

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  1. San George says:

    You missed no $2.1 billion in debt. If you keep lying to people it will not be safe to live here. The chickens always come home – Donald Trump, South Africa, etc.

    Quo Fata Ferunt

    • Love it says:

      I love it Chris, this is a great letter. It reaches to the heart of our young votes and those that feel that Politicians no longer have our interest at heart. Keep writing Chris.

      • Boom says:

        Wow Chris,

        Did you ask yourself, if the UBP had remained in Power:

        a) Would Grand Atlantic Housing been built
        b) Would There have been a Bda Housing Corporation Scandal
        c) Would we have $800 million in unaccounted for money.
        d) Would the Berkely contracted be given to Proactive a company with no previous track record – leading to 60Million over run
        e) Would the Bda Cement company be snatched from one businessman and given to Friends.
        f) Would Bda emmissions have been built without RFP and given to a family member?
        g) would TCD have been built the same way?
        h) Or the Dockyard Cruse Pier
        I) Would we be Billions in debt from Overspending?
        j) Would we have still have almost zero unemployment?
        k) would we know where the cedar beams went?
        l) Would there have been a faith Based Tourism scandal?
        m) Would the GlobalHue contract be given to a Buddy, overpaid and then awarded again WITHOUT even going to RFP the second time?
        n) Would there have been millions wasted on a $4M Beyoncé Concert aimed at bringing east Coast vistors here when she was touring those same East Coast cities?

        Chris , I actually have a lot of respect for you and admire your loyalty, but this isn’t one of your better articles. Sometimes it’s better to let the flames die out instead of trying to blow on the fire!

    • One Up One Down says:

      I have been seeing this new figure (2.1 billion) a lot lately.

      At one point I was seeing 800 million A LOT.

      Please do not call me names when/if you respond….I genuinely want to know…..What happened to change the amount?

      • joneses says:

        One is the amount of unauditable monies during the PLPs reign due to poor book keeping ($800m). The other is our national debt ($2.1bn).

      • jt says:

        2.1 billion debt.

        800 million unaccounted in qualified audits.

        • Onion says:

          The $800 million unaccounted for precedes the qualified audits. The qualified audits occurred in the years AFTER accounting was supposedly beefed up following the $800 million and BHC/other scandals.

      • Boom says:

        $800 million represents the total amount that the Auditor General reported as “unaccounted for” . Nobody knows where it went, what it was used for , who took it? over a 14 year period that equally to $156,000 a day. Just vanished – gone – whoosh! But Chris and others won’t talk about that! shhhhh.

        2.1B is what we owe as a country.

        • Kangoocar says:

          @boom, you forgot to mention the fact that a lot of plp higher ups became very wealthy mysteriously on Premier and Min Salaries around the same time the $800 million went missing??? Now we have many of their supporters standing in the FA lines to try and get money from a present government that only has BORROWED money!!!!

    • Ya mama says:

      You all miss the point the guy is trying to make. He’s saying that from what he can see the ubp (lets stop pretending that it’s not) aren’t doing things to help the average person and that he wants to see people vote, the entire article was basically a war cry for everyone to take the right to vote.

      • hmmm says:

        Then Chris needs to write unbiased articles. He can’t, it would upset his social standing in the PLP.

      • Come Correct says:

        Because he’s a radical that only sees gene?

        • Come Correct says:

          Green autocorrect, dammit green.

        • Now Ya Nice says:

          If you know Chris he is not Radical. He is one of the nicest guys you would ever meet. However, he is loyal, VERY LOYAL, and like many can be accused of being loyal to a fault.

  2. Alvin Williams says:

    You forgot one thing if the UBP were still in power; there would be no OBA who unlike their UBP political father has not brothered to hide the dagger as they cut away the Bermudian right to their country and has declared a Bermudian has no birthright and is only a accidental Bermudian as compared to their friends who are status Bermudians by choice with the help of a loop-hole.

    • hmmm says:

      Alvin you have a warped mind, full of self generated hatred.

      The loop hole was a result of the PLP’s doing…don’t you think it was in their plans to exploit this, but they were voted out !

      The OBA started from scratch, completely different constitution, completely new rules, completely open to anyone who wanted to step up.

      We have had Premiers and heros who were not born here, yet you worshipped the ground they walked on. Surely someone with the “birthright” was being prevent then, yet you said nothing.

      • Mike says:

        No point telling Alvin that. He can’t take the facts. No one in the PLP ever could or will ever be able to.

        At the end of the day – it’s not abut facts anyway. It’s just about raw power.

  3. Unbelievable says:

    If the UBP had stayed in power those things would not have happened? You mean to tel me, Chris Famous that you are psychic?

    This is amazing! And extreme silly and desperate.

    If the OBA is the old UBP then we can still put the blame of Bermuda’s struggling economy to the PLP. See how that works?

  4. Tank Rain says:

    Why is there available space for these type article each week? Title should have been “According to My Crystal Ball”

    Do people sincerely buy into this?

    • inna says:

      No, i think he laps up the comments that people write to his articles, and enjoys seeing people all riled up!

      Clearly only a small segment of the population reads what he writes. I for one scroll straight to the comments, as most times you can gather what nonsense he wrote from people repeating it in their replies.

    • Come Correct says:

      Not people, sheep.

  5. Claudio says:

    You produce a weak argument for encouraging disillusioned to vote. Yes PLP did some good things, but what about the present and the future? The last few years the PLP was in power did not resemble anything like they did in the past.

    People fought in the past for the right to vote, correct – but it is up to me to exercise that right. Right now neither party appeals to me so you are telling me to vote just because?

    You are willing to promote the PLP’s past, during the 14 years in power our public education system has not improved – it has deteriorated according to some. The disparity between whites and blacks increased and it continues to do so, record numbers of work permits were signed. We are to our eyeballs in debt in which we cannot afford to implement some programs – and yes, I dont believe the PLP was wholly responsible, however they played a part of our current economic situation because they have mismangaed public funds in a time they should have been prudent.

    Currently, your party is not showing me any solid and concrete plans how to move this country forward. Inspirational notes and vague ideas show me that your party does not have any solid concrete vision for the country and is just using emotive politics – something I despise.

    I am not a fan of the OBA either.

    TCF, what you fail to realize is that many people are able to see through garbage other people spew. That whole ‘people fought for the right to vote so you should vote’ mindset is dying out. More and more people are not voting because of a lack of options.

    Stop pointing fingers and start looking within to find out why most people are becoming disillusioned with party politics – it has nothing with sleek political campaigns or misinformation propaganda. Take a look outside your bubble.

    • Come Correct says:

      ^^^^^This! In a nutshell, this is it.

  6. TonyC says:

    Unless you have a crystal ball, how do you know those listed would not have been done?

    I also wouldn’t be boasting about Heritage Wharf either – massively over budget and falling down.

    I see that you didn’t mention TCD, Berkeley, Port Royal and Magistrate’s Court. Embarrassed about those? You should be. Your brother not getting work without tendering now?

    It is evident how scared you are of the present Government being a success, and just keep banging the race drum to garner support. Pathetic.

  7. Sara says:

    No Perimeter Lane housing
    No Harbourview Village housing
    No Loughlands housing
    No One Man One Vote;
    No Future Care for our parents;
    No Heritage Wharf for Mega Cruise ships
    No Sylvia Richardson Seniors Home;
    No Dr. Cann Seniors Housing
    No fast ferries;
    No Lambe Foggo Clinic;
    No relief from death tax;
    No affordable DayCare allowance

    This is ALL we got for 2.1 billion? No wonder we all feel so ripped off by the PLP! Thanks for putting it in perspective!

    • Love it says:

      A great more deal than the OBA has done with the monies they have borrowed. That list by the way is incomplete. You missed out many more things the PLP has done.

      • Accountant says:

        The OBA don’t have much to show for it is as they are still paying for the careless spending that was carried out by the last PLP Government.

        It is a burden still as the PLP spent it all with no plans on how to pay for anything. THAT IS WHY WE ARE STILL PAYING!

      • jt says:

        The OBA borrowing has covered debt payments and civil service wages/benefits.

        Next.

      • GTA says:

        You do realize the OBA has been in power for just over 2 years compared to the PLP’s 14 years… and the monies they had to borrow is a direct result of the debt racked up by the PLP trying to fill your incomplete list of cost over runs and spurious spending.

        • Self says:

          That’s hogwash. I don’t have a degree in economics, but common sense would dictate that you don’t borrow to pay off debt. If I were in debt, would I borrow to pay it off or increase my earning power to pay it down?
          They blame all of their failures to fulfill their promises on the PLP…how long are people going to buy that?

          • inna says:

            As long as we do not spend more than we bring in!!! The PLP, consecutively (that means year after year) spent more than they bought in. This is the reason why our debt is so high.

            Fast forward to today, and we are STILL paying for our debt.

            You are correct, common sense does tell you that you do not borrow to pay off debt. Maybe you should have been this interested when the pie was being sold in the sky!!!

          • jt says:

            It’s called servicing the debt….interest….you need to educate yourself on your country’s financial position. You clearly haven’t the foggiest idea.
            And you might in fact borrow to make payments on the principle if the terms of the new borrow were more favourable.

          • Jus' Wonderin' says:

            That’s why you don’t have a degree in economics…dummy!

            • Self says:

              I don’t have a degree in economics, but I do HAVE a degree!! I also have a good job, a house that is mortgage free, a car that is paid for and NO debt…so who’s the dummy?

              My father had me saving money from an early age, and I WAS a homeowner at 21 years of age with his help. One thing I was always told was not to borrow money for bills. My dad may not have been an educated man, but I bet he knew more about saving money and getting out of a hole than these guys do!! I think you’re calling the wrong person a dummy.

          • Yahoo says:

            You apparently don’t have a degree or diploma in anything, let alone common sense. If a loan comes due and there is no money to pay it back, there are essentially two options:

            1. Default (worked out great for Greece, huh?)
            2. BORROW MORE MONEY and use those funds to pay down the debt coming due

            PLP all dee way

          • Accurate says:

            “Increase my earning power” is that it? Come on Bermuda everybody just needs to increase their earning power. What are we waiting for?

          • aceboy says:

            LOL My dear fellow, if you were in debt but didn’t have the money to pay it you cannot simply increase your spending power at the drop of a hat. That takes time. Rather than have your house or car (whatever you borrowed to buy) repossessed you would indeed borrow….or lose the asset. It is that simple.

      • Boom says:

        Fill us in!

        • Come Correct says:

          Apparently just increase your spending power. Didn’t work out for me. Instead of handing the cashier my money I baseball pitched my wallet at her head n ace girl took a tude. I recon it was at least 87mph, confused dun. I’m going straight Tim “the tool man” Taylor this week…MORE POWER!

    • Self says:

      You people don’t care because most of these only benefit a certain segment of the community…you know, those of us who didn’t suck on a pacifier made of gold. Unlike the OBA, the PLP had a social conscience and cared about the have-nots.

      • Sara says:

        Look bad math is bad math stop making excuses.

      • jt says:

        Having a ‘social conscience’ at the expense of fiscal ruin is poor governance and helps no one over the long term….or not so long term as the case may be.
        This puts aside what motivations may or may not have been behind the rampant overspending and ludicrous PS expansion.

        • hmmm says:

          Anyone could have joined the OBA and put themselves forward as a candidate for election.

          The haves and the have nots were, and are included.

      • Come Correct says:

        Your chosen name says everything about you. 2012 I had to apply for jobs. I almost filed a charge on the job I was given this week.

  8. Noncents says:

    While I agree with Mr Famous on the importance of our right (and I believe duty) to vote, it does read like a letter outlining the importance to vote PLP.

    • Love it says:

      Yes it is important to vote PLP, this government has broken every promise and seem to only have the interest of those that can affort and not the have nots.

      • Dude says:

        what a load

        • Come Correct says:

          Why? I dropped out of school before I got my GED but I feel I should make $250,000 a year after full benefits. Am I not entitled to that by birthright? These foreigners are taking my $250,000 from me and I was actually able to type this with a straight face.

      • Yahoo says:

        Because the PLP didn’t break any promises? Go back to sleep.

        • Come Correct says:

          The adventures of Bob n Dunk -season 1 Episode 1

          Dunk: Arg! We plundered this ship and its booty from the infamous people’s liability party.

          Bob: Aye Cap’n Dunk, but there’s no booty.

          Dunk: No booty?!

          Bob: Aye Cap’n, seems the booty was squandered on exotic hats.

          Dunk: Exotic fattin hats?! Exotic fattin hats won’t put sails on this ship. Bring me deck swab Baron.

          Bob: At once Cap’n.

          Baron: y y y yes Cap’n, you summoned?

          Dunk: Aye, Arg, aye, fetch me me flask of black **** rum, the one that hits deep in the throat. Prepare the men, today we go after the legendary manatee “Americ*cup*as.

          To be continued

    • Tolerate says:

      @Noncents; Hit the nail on the head; Unfortunately it still gets eaten up by many.
      PLP and Mr. Famous was adamant that they lost because voters did not show up.
      This is ALL this piece is about…. Oh, and throw in the fluff while leaving out the parts we are ashamed of as TonyC said above, “I see that you didn’t mention TCD, Berkeley, Port Royal and Magistrate’s Court. Embarrassed about those?”
      We are ALL not stupid.
      lol

      • Tolerate says:

        “I ain’t voting.” “All de politicians are the same.”

        This scares the s**** out of CF and the PLP and is why CF is addressing it now before it spreads up to the next election. Their success is based on higher numbers of voters, voting from emotions and lack of background education on where BDA is economically and why. I have always said as I am not rooted to any Party; “The PLP’s strategy for winning the next election is by default”. They have not shown their worth and only speak to throw mud at the OBA waiting to see what sticks, hoping to make the OBA look bad to voters and walking away with the Government. They need to try harder at proving THEY are the better choice; NOT the ONLY OTHER choice.
        But hey, keep up the good work. I’m sure your Party will reward you well. Got a few constituencies that will need filling.
        lol

  9. James says:

    One of the dimmest columns I’ve ever read on what is actually an important topic. No fast ferries? Really? You’ve got to be kidding me.

  10. GTA says:

    The right to vote also comes with the right to abstain… If someone is not satisfied with the options given they have the right not to choose either option. To say “Not voting is unacceptable and counter-productive to the progress of all Bermudians” is a complete farce to the Civil Rights movements which were not about selecting one political party over another, but were fought so that everyone, no matter their race, creed, or political affiliation, are treated equally and that everyone has an equal right to vote. Whether someone choose to use this right is their choice and not a requirement, and certainly not unacceptable. Sometimes we use the term ‘opinion’ when the correct term should be ‘propaganda’!

  11. Starting Point says:

    Your reference to ‘Look around the island and let us say the UBP had remained in power’ shows how utterly inept you are both from a columnist perspective and as a political thinker. It really is staging that you put this on paper. Using Mr. Famous warped logic we can then say this.

    Look around the island and let us say the PLP had remained in power :-

    No end to conscription
    No amendments to civil rights
    No hotel developments
    No amendments to the drug act to allow medical MJ
    No implementation of PATI legislation
    No casino gambling legislation
    No increase in mega ship access to dockyard
    No Heros day weekend
    No expanded harbour nights to eastern Hamilton
    etc. etc.

    To say that things that have happened after a political party leaves office is proof that the party prior would not have done them is pretty much as juvenile a statement as a person could make, to actually write it down in an opinion piece is clear evidence that your intellectual capacity to add to the political debate is lacking.

    SMH

    • inna says:

      Makes sense when he entrance into the op-ed world started by his spewing of nonsense on FB!

      He writes like he talks.

  12. Young Professional says:

    San George: Yes we have a debt and that’s why the PLP lost the vote. It’s not wise to vote for a party based on the poor performance of the other so all the pointing fingers at the UBP and PLP need to stop. We need to vote a party based on their platform and their actions. So when the next election comes around my vote will be based on the performance of the OBA.

  13. Mark says:

    You forgot to add the south shore housing to the list .

  14. UmJustSaying says:

    I’m not voting to tow THE PARTY LINE, look where it has taking us.
    I put them in one of two catagories…………….wise or wicked.

  15. Jurist says:

    More garbage from a PLP propagandist.

  16. Terry says:

    You wonder where the yellow went; brush your teeth with green PLPdent

  17. Ty says:

    Mr. C. Famous. – You sir are………WOW. You spew this crap on a regular basis and then you wonder why we can’t just get along. I would have given you more credence if you would have just left it along the lines of why someone should vote. As soon as you put in that “Look around the island and let us say the UBP had remained in power” you lost all credibility. Why did you just not say – If you don’t vote PLP – you are doomed. Like I said up top…. you sir are………WOW

    “Many don’t fully understand politics, seemingly even some politicians”

    According to your above quote – Why – then should I vote especially if even a few politicians are clueless??

    I actually want to thank you for that quote because it just confirms to me that the only person who is going to work for me… is ME – by myself and not rely on people like you and/or any politicians. I stayed in school and ensured I got a decent education (never went to college)and am a Systems Analyst now. It’s called applying yourself. I by myself ensured I had the right qualifications to get a decent job to sustain myself for years to come. It’s called applying yourself. I by myself ensured I stashed a lil money aside for when the proverbial ‘sh!t hits the fan’ – as we are seeing now. I literally sat in my living room just yesterday and watched 2 of our politicians walk right across my house and never knocked. (actually glad of that).. the other group of persons will hopefully do the same.

    I have become SO disillusioned with ALL political parties that I will ensure I do for ME and ME alone. The majority of them are like ‘things on a bull – USELESS’. On a daily basis I feel like I’m watching an episode of Rugrats when it comes to both parties. For myself who has been voting since 1981 it has become incredible to see how politics has turned into gutter crap today.

    To you young folk out there – Do what grandma would always say, hide your money in your mattress – stay in school and at least get a high school diploma. You do not need all that fancy paper work from these prestigious colleges to get a decent job. It’s called applying yourself. I truly feel sorry for the younger generation if politics continue to go the way it is going today.

    I wish my little island all the best for the future – YOU’RE GONNA NEED IT.

    Ty

    • Terry says:

      He is a radical.

      That is why I gave him up as a facebook friend.

      You wonder where the green $800 million went?

      Look north

      Shalom.

  18. bluebird says:

    The DEBT has now rissen to $2.385BILLION DOLLARS,we are still feeling the effects of the previous administration.
    Still borrowing $220 million per year to keep the Civil Service paid.And 5years that will be over another BILLION DOLLARS.
    What cant go on forever will STOP.

  19. bluebird says:

    That bye must have forgotton about the $50million dollar school over there in Pembroke that cost overun at
    $123million and the parents of the children were screwed out of another $1000.00 dollars to buy the school computors that were never used in the school at that time,where they go,they ended up in a cupboard at home.

  20. PBanks says:

    “All de politicians are the same.”

    Take away whatever pin they have in their suit jacket, and it indeed feels the same to many.

    You’ve managed to take what should be a compelling piece regarding the importance of the right to vote, into a bit of a propaganda piece to encourage abstainers to vote for Party X. That does a real disservice to what the right to vote should be about.

    Earn our votes, don’t demand them by playing on our sense of duty.

  21. Tank Rain says:

    I am thankful Port Royal is such a great golf course now!

  22. Unbelievable says:

    Ya boy went back in time just to see into the future. That takes real talent.

  23. Terry says:

    Everyone comments on the “Civil Service”.

    With my dealings with Government Employees over the past 50 years (prior to young )……………………

    Only a couple were “civil”.

    Memories.

  24. Unbelievable says:

    He probably came across a person who won’t vote for the PLP anymore. This “opinion” piece is exactly why that person won’t vote for the PLP anymore. I’m certain they aren’t the only one.

  25. Betty Boop says:

    Uh Famous….who cares, you’re loss!

  26. Mind-boggling says:

    The right to vote is a huge thing and of vital importance. But what the constant rhetoric of “we lost because our supporters didnt come out to vote” apparently fails to recognise is that those people DID vote. Many of them could not bring themselves to vote FOR the other side but they ACTIVELY chose to NOT vote for the PLP also. That is also no less of a statement than casting a vote at the polling station !

    Until the PLP recognise that and address the real reasons that people made that decision, pieces like this will not inspire those people to go back to the polls.

  27. John E. Thorne says:

    If the UBP had remained in power would the country still be bankrupt?

  28. Chris Famous says:

    Thanks for taking the time to read and put in your comments.