Video: Brannon Dismissed From Tourism Board

June 14, 2011

[Updated with video] Veteran entertainer Tony Brannon was ‘dismissed’ from the Bermuda Tourism Board today [June 14].

Mr Brannon was named to the Tourism Board in December 2010 along with Malcolm Butterfield [Chairman], Jonathan Crellin [Deputy Chairman], Brian Duperrault, Wendell “Shine” Hayward, Kelly Francis, Quinton Bean, Vincent Ingham, Randolph Horton, Maxwell Burgess, Michelle Cox, Sallie Singleton, Isabelle Braxton and Anthony Santucci.

Further details to follow later this afternoon.

Update 2:45pm: The Bermuda Department of Tourism confirmed that Mr. Brannon will “no longer serve on the Tourism Board for the remainder of 2011.”

A spokesperson said “The BDOT took this opportunity to publicly thank Mr. Brannon for his passion and service over the last several months. The public can be assured that the work of the Board will not be adversely affected by Mr. Brannon’s departure and it is anticipated that the vacant Tourism Board post will be filled in due course. As this is an internal matter, the BDOT has declined further comment regarding the issue at this time.”

Update 3:11pm: Mr Brannon said he thinks he was too “progressive” for the Board and the Minister.

Update 3:55pm: 8 minute video statement from Mr Brannon below. Mr Brannon said “The way things are going with the political animal controlling tourism is not a working theory, and its a failure.”

“We need to take the politics out of tourism, so it doesn’t matter who the sheriff of the day is, the business of Bermuda tourism is managed in a consistent manner.”

“The Tourism Board has written not one line of code on their plan. So in 6 months we’ve done nothing but talk, eat cakes, and have coffee,” said Mr Brannon.

Update 5:53pm: The email sent by Mr Brannon to Minister Minors and Premier Cox prior to his dismissal is below:


Please forgive me for intruding on your Cabinet meeting, but I consider it important to have a reality check on where we are in regards to the Tourism Boards writing of a NATIONAL PLAN and other issues.

· It is now 6 months from the date of meeting # 1 and there has not been one line of a plan written to date.

· We have had board changes, sickness issues and I feel we are nowhere near where we should be. In business this would not happen – with all due respect.

· I said at my first meeting that the system was fundamentally flawed and that the management of Bermuda Tourism needed to be based on a business model or a Tourism Authority.

· It seems that all things are not on the table as Minister Minors has said on more than one occasion that she does not support Resort Gaming. Norman Mastalir and many other hoteliers have lobbied government to address Resort Gaming

· The violence at SNORKEL PARK where Cruise Ship staff were attacked by local thugs has resulted in at least one cruise line enforcing a curfew for all crew in Dockyard – they all have to be back on board by 1.30 am. The result has spread to passengers who are also not wondering afar from the ships at night. Crew have even been told to take their name tags off whilst off the ship so as not to identify themselves.

· I spoke with a senior cruise ship employee who told me that it is “policy” to keep the passengers on board at night. There is no interest to promote local night time events in Bermuda as they want all the business to remain onboard ship as much as possible. I asked if it could be recommended to send passengers to certain nightspots and was told that the cruise employees would be fired for doing so. They have specific sales targets to meet in their shops, bars, spas etc and so they want the passengers to spend all their cash onboard as much as possible.

· I always suspected this was the case, but now I know the reality is that Bermuda business gets very little, whilst the cruise lines look to maximize $$$ because of the price they discount their cabins for.

· The Cruise Ships have full blown entertainment in port so no need to get off. HERITAGE NIGHTS just had their 3rd event in the Victualling Yard, and the attendance from passengers has been pathetic – and they are 300 yards away. Attendance has dropped week over week.

· Bermuda Government make anywhere between $900,000 to $ 1.2 million a week in head tax.

· There is little police presence ever in the Dockyard and street lighting at night is poor – Wedco is aware but this has still not been addressed.

· Whilst some hoteliers see improvement on current projections over last year, some are seeing July & August as challenging. The winter will come again and again we will all struggle. More people will close up shop this winter.

· Whilst Cruise Ships sail full to Bermuda each week, with ALL OPTIONS offered to guests, Local Hotels are still behind the 8 ball as they cannot offer all options. This puts them (hotels) at a serious disadvantage in terms of being able to compete with other destinations.

· A hotel developer has said that there is serious $$$$ in Middle East re possible interest in Bermuda, BUT that there are visa issues and a standoff between UK and BDA over visa’s ? These folks need a hassle free connection if they are to invest in Bermuda – same goes for others.

I am hoping for a true renaissance in Bermuda Tourism, but we have laws, policy and red tape preventing this from truly happening, and whilst there has been some changes (yacht policy) change is not coming fast enough to address the dire situation we all face economically in the business of tourism. The other issue I find concerning is that the Tourism Board members are always the last to know about any current initiatives, and whilst our mandate is to “write a plan”, whilst the current BDOT keeps their hands on the rudder, we surely need better advance information of current plans before they go out publicly ?

I hope you appreciate my concerns.

Tony Brannon

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Comments (138)

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  1. Have some sense says:

    hmmmmmmm — Why?

    • itwasn'tme says:

      WHY? Anybody can see that the DOT is nothing but a consuming glutton with several civil servants and consultants simply feeding at the trough. SHUT down DOT and spend the money on promoting BDA on CBS/NBC/ABC and Cable Channels. Offer the tourism board members incentives for every initiative that shows results. If Paula really wants to same money, SHUT DOT DOWN!

    • LOL says:

      Watching Mr Brannon reminds me of Charlie Sheen lol

  2. CB says:

    Sound as if they didn’t like his idea of revitalizing the night life and generally trying to improve our product. I mean, what was TB thinking?

  3. Triangle Drifter says:

    Well…that didn’t last long! So much for a starting from a clean slate & fresh ideas.

    Its the same old same old. Watch his replacement be a PLP party hack, somebody who really knows about tourism like a doorman or bellman.

    • SMH says:

      WOW – thats very discriminatory and judgmental. Are you saying that a doorman or bellman doesnt know anything about tourism? These are some of the people that likely know the MOST about dealing with tourists and their likes and dislikes.

      • Triangle Drifter says:

        Yep, a bellman or a doorman gets to exchange a few short greetings with a visitor but rarely gets an opportunaty for an in depth conversation with them.

        I’ll give you one thing, the bellman or doorman knows far more than the ‘yesman’ party hack who knows nothing of tourism other than his trip to Disneyworld or a cruise.

        • Preto Plato says:

          Unless the yesman party hack is a doorman right. You people kill me.

        • crazytalk says:

          Triangle, judging from the reaction here, it looks like you nailed it.

      • Terry says:

        You can shake your freekin head all you want.

        You cannot be a “doorman” or a Bellman” unless you have guests.

        Ok, we have a few hotels that have doors.

        Go figure.

        Never read so much crap in my life. Must be the milk……………………

    • Preto Plato says:

      Oh yeah that’s right.. only people educated overseas who would never be opening doors have any good ideas right… No wonder you and your likes can’t win an election. Talking down to people without even realising it.

    • Spikes says:

      Triangle drifter, wait until the facts are revealed before you start blaming the PLP. Everything that goes wrong is attributed to the PLP according to people of your ILK.

      • Triangle Drifter says:

        The majority of members of Government Boards are appointed by the Governing party. Each board does have a no politically appointed decfacto member having a working expertise with the department concerned.

        The mess Bermuda is in IS the creation of the PLP. Get over it. Take responsibility for it. Deal with it.

        I would not be a bit surprised if AIR VISITOR, not business, arrivals are now below late 1960s figures.

      • sandgrownan says:

        of your ILK…excellent…can’t hide your distaste eh?

      • Think about it says:

        @ Spikes

        IT IS THE PLP’s FAULT!!!!

        Who else is there to blame? They have been running the show for over 12 years!!! So who else is there to blame? Sh*t, bring Ewart Brown back, please. Even under him things wouldn’t be this bad.

        • Truth says:

          Wow. Just wow. It’s is largely because of Ewart that things are this bad. What Bermuda have you been living in?

    • mixitup says:

      You are so wrong on your point that a door man has little to offer. It’s actually quite the opposite. The Hotel Manager does not have their pulse on that guest like the doorman does. Door man have build lasting relationships and are a fraction of the reason for many people returning to BDA. There the ones that can tell you the stories.

      • Think about it says:

        That doesn’t mean a doorman is the right man to run the entire DOT, thats’ stupid to think so.

    • Dale Butler says:

      If anyone feels they have the skills to serve please send your name to your Member of Parliament or the Minister and or Premier.

      • FYI-Just A Thought says:

        Greetings Mr. Butler,

        Thank you for weighing in on this discussion and your suggestions have been noted. However, with that being said, after reading a number of the comments many would like to know why has there not been a Tourism Authority in place or further plans to implement one? Like most ideas/suggestions/that often fall fate to an individual (current Minister) who’s knowledge in this arena is limited.

        I am a young Bermudian, who often finds that when suggestions like these have been made they often fall on deaf years or are overlooked. There are a plethora of people in my humble opinion who could serve in a capacity and the first are of interest to consider would be gaining input from individuals working at what little hotels, transportaion or perhaps even asking our exempt companies to partner with the DOT. Perhaps one would even suggestask their business guests to offer a suggestion on what types of activities could be made available to them? A joint effort on all partiess. And I am not just referring to a typical golf game.

        This would of course be offered to those that are interested. Secondly, tourism begins at home. With the history and ethos of a people. I find that some tourist based activities could also be used as a team building excursions to also help boost the morale of employers and employees foster healthier relationships amid the current economic climate. It goes beyond just serving on a board, it’s about being proactive and starting with one initiative or project at a time. And too many people are getting tired of hearing the same rhetoric.

        So, other avenues to consider would be taking your suggestion and generating it into an advert so that transparency offers clarity. How do people know whether or not they can serve if that information is not known publicly?

        And for the record I know both MP’s representing my constituency and have welcomed the both of them to sit and discuss many a issue affecting my generation (80s) and after engaging in a number of meetings with them, the both only seemed to be interested in their own agenda.

  4. Terry says:

    Come on guys and gals….jingus. This is a news headline. We don’t know the details.

    As for Tony….pain in the freeking ass because he sticks it too you. History is a bitch.

    Thank you Mr. Brannon for sticking to your guns. Only ones that got shot are the bastards that shot themselves in the foot. As for Duperrault, well..what can I say. A real Bermudian family from the 1600′s…..

    Soo me.

  5. PEPPER says:

    It is obvious that Tony knows more than the tourism minister..that is why she fired him.

    • SMH says:

      oh puh-lease

      • Peppere is probably right!! Minister Minors admitted she knew very little about tourism from the very beginning!! Tony has had his hands in tourism for several decades!!

      • sandgrownan says:

        You don’t think so?

        • SMH says:

          i highly doubt that is why she fired him. Minister Minors is not one that rules with an iron fist and is not vendetta driven.

      • crazytalk says:

        I think that’s highly likely.

    • Red says:

      Pepper- Brannon and the minister are playing at it, however I fully endorse making this a tourism authority and allowing real professionals to run it. I am equally supportive of required expertise being contracted from overseas as this PLP experiment has been a complete failure. The numbers, or lack of same, don’t lie.

      Note- The UBP did well in spite of themselves / their incompetence. Once real competition to the south opened up Bermuda’s lack real direction and strategy was cruelly exposed..

    • tradition says:

      Glad someone is holding them in check

  6. Citizen Banned (Original) says:

    He should have got the message way back in that text from Alex that Government doesn’t like people who look like him.

    • True Bermudian says:

      Don’t forget Renee Webb saying she only wants “people who look like me” to be awarded public contracts and business.

  7. Venj says:

    They won’t comment because it’s an internal matter? BS – it’s a public board!

  8. True Bermudian says:

    Talk such as ACCOUNTABILITY and privatising tourism probably helped seal his fate.

    They probably gave him the job in the fall hoping he’d shut his mouth, be a good boy, accept his pay off and go away.

    I guess creating a new and exciting event, such as his beach tennis, to attract customers to this tired old spiteful unappreciative joke of a tourist destination, did him no favours.

    Sorry to hear that Tony. You’re way better than those FHULES anyway.

    • Terry says:


      Get off your computers and your asses instead of taking your earnings, family and shipping them overseas. Thats all your doing. Green cards, visa here, visa there.

      It’s all about you.

      You Tube……………………..whats at the bottom…..AHHHHHHH!!!!!!!!

  9. Fed Up Bermudian says:

    I hate to tell you lot, but Government boards and commissions don’t actually get a big pay off. What you get paid for sitting in the meetings is dependent entirely on whether you attend- absentees don’t get paid for that day- and the fee you get is more of a nominal honararium, maybe about $50 per meeting. It’s not something you quit your job for, it’s something you do because you want to serve. Might buy a nice dinner every couple of months- but only if you didn’t order wine. Pretty sure it’s in the relevant legislation, actually. If there is any in this instance. Sometimes you serve on a board for free…

    Just a point of clarity, that’s all.

    • Dale Butler says:

      Most times $25
      and some Boards get NOTHING

      • Fed Up Bermudian says:

        Thank you, Mr. Butler- I just get a little frustrated when people think that you are being paid some sort of king’s ransom for serving on a board, and then that lie get propagated and expanded. You serve out of duty and love for what you do, because the time commitment can be huge and the personal gains are minimal at best- as it should be. In my opinion, for what it’s worth, there needs to be some footsoldiers on there- someone who is familiar with the attitudes, familiar with the missteps of management, etc.- and I don’t really think that viewpoint will be given by Mr. Duperreault or Mr. Horton. I totally don’t understand his appointment…but I suppose there was some reason. If nothing else, the man speaks his mind.

  10. Terry says:

    But most of us knew that Fed Up…….or were you just speaking to the gangsters that lurk here and there. Jingus……

    Maybe a 6.2 might waik yoo lutt hup…………………….

    I saw the movie ’101 Dalmations’……Maybe the Minister of Health should pass out bigger condoms……..Inflation is a beach…….you’ll get it…….

    • Fed Up Bermudian says:

      Wow, you lost me completely there, Terry. I have no idea what you’re even referring to, with the 6.2 or the 101 Dalmations, or even how my comment inspired those leaps. What I was responding to was the remark about ‘accepting his pay off’- that’s not what happens when anyone is invited to join a Government board, that’s all. What with the ignorance, racism, finger-pointing and general displays of pettiness and arguing, I couldn’t be sure that this was common knowledge.

      • Yup says:

        Most people have no clue about this, Fed Up. So thanks for the clarification. I sit on a board and have not received a single dollar. I do, however, give up one evening a week and one weekend a month to meet with board members and ensure that all is in order. It really IS community service.

        • Fed Up Bermudian says:

          Yes, it is. And, most boards also have an ex officio who is the director of the relevant department- a civil servant- they don’t even get paid OT for their extra time involved, nor would most of them ever even dream of asking for it. It is a commitment, and you’re definitely right- it IS community service. These aren’t like boards in the private sector. But, what this does mean is that those who are there are there because they want to be. Government does have that part of the equation more or less right.

          And- another point of clarity- we all ruined tourism. We confused service with servitude, we got used to easy money, we got used to hiring foreigners to do our ‘dirty jobs’ and then complained when they couldn’t speak English. We made visitors feel unwelcomed by ‘elevating’ our once-pleasant ‘good mornings’ to ‘I SAID GOOD MORNING!!!’- we took our good manners to bad practice. We thought of ourselves as the most exclusive country club in the world, all we had to do was be Bermuda and everyone would want to be here. We delivered no service for top dollar, shabby decor for too much money, no nightlife. Those were not acts of any government, not UBP or PLP. We did all of that without their help. We need all hands on deck now, regardless of who the captain is. We can’t expect the captain to fix it on their own.


    • PEPPER says:

      So Charles, what does this have to do with the firing Mr Brannon ?

  12. SMH says:

    so this has become the Tony Show…smh…

    • Cleancut says:

      Tony Brannon probably tried to run the whole show himself. We all know how his ideas have to be implemented in a whim. i don’t see any of the board members supporting him, so i guess they also found him to be too hot to handle.

  13. Chris says:

    It’s funny to see people on here blaming the state of tourism on the PLP. Whilst they may not have done much to improve it even Mr. Brannon stated in his email to the Premier and Tourism Minister “30 years of political mismanagement of Bermuda tourism created the disaster that befell this country”. My math is a bit rusty but the PLP have been in power since 1997 and that means they have been running the country for 13 years. Who was in charge of Tourism for the 17 years of political mismanagement before that? If anyone can sit there and honestly say that tourism was flourishing in that time under the UBP you are only trying to convince yourself because to the rest of the reasonable thinking Bermudians that is a joke. Before anyone jumps to the conclusion that I am a PLP supporter, I AM NOT. I just can’t sit hear and listen to people blame the PLP like they’re the ONLY ones at fault. I wonder if these same people made as much noise when the UBP decided to focus on International Business rather than tourism or when they stopped promoting the island as a Spring break destination for college students (Both decisions made well before the PLP came into power). Lay the blame where it belongs, on the feet of both political parties instead of targeting one because you don’t like them.

    • True Bermudian says:

      Well said.

      You forgot about the good ol’ BIU.

    • My two cents says:

      Exactly, the PLP has continued the bad habits of the UBP much to the dismay of those that voted for a “change”.

    • Watching! says:

      You are right. The blame belongs to the BIU for their strike in 1981. Tourism began it’s decline because of it.

  14. Bulla Bulla says:

    The PLP will not be happy until there are no tourists and international business leave for good and we are all living in the bushes!
    P.eople L.iving in P.overty!

  15. crazytalk says:

    What we’re talking about here is what the government is doing today, not what someone did in the 1980′s.

    There have been dozens of hotels closed (and demolished) in the last 13 years. The few new ones are either insolvent or on life-support. The industry depends on large cruise ships, and even those passengers are largely disgruntled because of the poor product they’re receiving (disorganised buses and ferries, dirty beaches, etc).

    So they get a guy on the tourism board who has the nerve to actually say something, and they don’t like it. Here is a guy, with experience, who might have a freakin clue, and he’s dumped. Why? Because they didn’t like the tone of his email? Get over it. Will they listen to him…? No, they’d rather have a group of passive yes-men who never rock the boat, and who won’t say anything that might ‘make the govt look bad’.

    • Chris says:

      Crazytalk, so what the UBP did in the 80′s (and most of the 90′s by the way) has no bearing on the state of tourism today? No hotels were closed in the time they were in power? Were the UBP great progressive thinkers? Did they have people on the boards that rocked the boat? No, they acted and did the same thing you are accusing the PLP of doing now. Let me ask this question, if the UBP was so great why did the majority of Bermudians vote them out of government? Tourism was a problem when the PLP got into power. Granted, they have not done a good job in reviving it but it’s a problem that they inherited. Let’s do an analogy: John breaks your TV and you take it to Paula to fix. She fixes it but it still doesn’t work. You mean to tell me you would just blame Paula for your TV not working or would you blame John for breaking it in the first place. It’s not a perfect example but I hope you catch my point.

      • What happened ! says:

        The UBP didn’t kill tourism .. If a product is good and desireable and managed properly it sustains itself. The UBP certainly saw a massive opportunity in IB , but that didn’t kill tourism.
        There are still thousands of Americans who haven’t forgotten how their ‘beloved Bermudians’ spat on them and danced on the tables at breakfast in the 81 strike ! How about all of them that had their bags snatched and rooms robbed while they were either still in them or out for fun ?
        Or them that travel to other beautiful destinations that watched as we littered everywhere and filled our open spaces with concrete and filled the roads with out of control traffic that had zero respect for their presence ?
        All the while believing that we were the most special place in the world.
        And then we charged them exhorbitant rates and wouldn’t serve them unless they said ‘good morning’ ..
        No , it was Bermudians who killed tourism … Ironically the offspring of people who built the product and came home everyday after work and told their children …’These ‘Mericans love us sooooo much they is neva going to stop coming here’ helped kill it .

        • Me says:

          You are right! Bermudians killed tourism! Our bad attitudes, piss poor service, and outrages prices did it!

      • why PLP??? says:

        The PLP were voted in, and will continue to be voted in because of the divide in the population in this country. It’s all about ‘us’ and ‘them’ and there is no ‘we the Bermudians’ as a whole. The PLP know that they can do whatever they want because the ‘majority of Bermudians’ will never vote for the ‘them’ in the other parties. i suppose its better to be robbed blind by your own people rather than ‘them’ people.

      • crazytalk says:

        Chris, it’s not a perfect analogy, but let’s run with it.

        Paula promised, as I recall it, to fix the TV set. She said she could do better than John. In fact, she said she could ‘fix the TV set in 100 days’. That came and went.

        Paula has hired all sorts of expensive consultants to help fix the TV. But all that keeps happpening is that they take compnents out and lose them. The TV started as project that needed redirection, but now it almost has no chance of working unless we throw it away and buy a new one.

        We need (in your analogy) a new electrician.

      • Think about it says:


        The reason the PLP were voted in is because black Bermudians wanted to see more people that looked like them running the show, that was it. And it’s been a slow downward spiral ever since then. And so long as the PLP plays the race card, they will keep winning elections.

        And to address your analogy: Paula helped break Bermuda(the tv) so yes she is to blame. All that money Brown pissed away, you know who had to sign those cheques? Paula Cox. You know who could have suggested or told him it wasn’t smart to spend this or that? Paula Cox. And now, the person who let Ewart Brown run wild with Bermuda’s money is now in power, and you all (PLP supporters) expect her to be any different. I can’t count how many times she’s been off the island since she became premier. Even Obama stays in the U.S. for more than a week at a time.

        • Chris says:

          To Crazytalk and Think about it: I still see nothing in any of your statements that acknowledges that the downward spiral in Tourism started during the reign of the UBP. All I continue to see is the blame laid at the feet of the PLP. It’s like you have ignored everything that happened before they came to power. “Think about it” makes it sound as if there was a Golden Age in Bermuda when the UBP was in power. He’s a news flash for you buddy, the same people that are suffering now, were suffering then. I believe in the saying that “Power corrupts and Absolute Power Corrupts Absolutely”. It doesn’t matter what political party is in charge, there will always be matters of government overspending and government corruption. That is the nature of the beast. And guess what, when the UBP was in power they acted the same way as the PLP are now which is why people got tired of them. So stay in your own little word and pretend everything was peaches and cream with the UBP, the rest of us poor folk remember the struggle that we went through and continue to go through.

          • Tired of nonsense says:

            You own a computer….you are not that poor mate…

            • Chris says:

              Actually, I’m on a work computer mate. If you’re on your computer at home at this time of the day you must be privileged enough not to work. So you wouldn’t have a clue when I talk about struggling. I work 2 jobs regularly and take hustle jobs where I can just so I can make enough money to support my family. In a good month I might be able to save a little something to leave for my kids when I’m gone. Do you what they call people like that mate, the working poor. And this may be a surprise to you mate, but there are scores of people like that Bermuda. But I guess because we don’t wear rags and live in shacks we’re not poor. Because we save up to buy a second hand computer to help our kids with their homework we’re not poor. I guess that makes me middle class then, right? Wow, lucky me, and all this time I never realized it.

              • Tired of nonsense says:

                I also work two jobd my friend and have been paying rent to someone else for 15+ years as I cannot afford property in my own island.

                But in your world only black people do such things…so sad and predicatble the thought process of some…

                I am happy to open your eyes…even if it is just a squint…

                • Chris says:

                  Your eyes must still be closed. No where in my post did I mention color, black or white. How can I assume what color you are or vice-versa. You seem so eager to bring race into the debate when race was never mentioned in the first place. And your ASS-umtion that I’m black, try again mate. I am of mixed heritage, so guess what, I’m in your world too. It’s so sad and predictable the thought process of some…

                  • Tired of nonsense says:

                    ” He’s a news flash for you buddy, the same people that are suffering now, were suffering then”

                    So who are the “same people” to which you refer oh perpetual victim?

                    • Chris says:

                      First of all Ass, I was talking about people that are struggling to get by. Many of them happen to be black but there are also whites that have struggled as well which I why I would never mention race. But you felt the need to include race into the conversation. I was making the point that everything was not all peaches and cream under the leadership of the UBP. I must have hit a nerve for you to take my statement and turn it into a racial issue. Feeling some guilt about something are we?

                      Second of all Ass, I’m nobody’s victim. I’ve never asked for nothing and work for all I have. You on the other hand like to think of yourself as a victim of the PLP and Paula Cox. It’s all their fault that your life isn’t great.

                    • Tired of nonsense says:

                      Hey Dick (or any other body part that aptly describes yourself),

                      Where did I ever mention anything about PLP and Premier Cox about being the reasons for my position in life? Never did and I never will.

                      I don’t take the route, as many do in Bermuda, for blaming everyone (alive and dead) or anything for my lot in life.

                      I don’t have a lot in life (material possessions), but what I do have I worked for and did not receive handouts from any Govt or family member.

                      So in the end I guess I am not much different from you. I am an ass. You are a dick. We both don’t have much and we expect little from others.

                      Good to meet you…gald we came to an understanding

                  • LOL (original) says:

                    Would just like to interject here I might be wrong but seems that a lot of mixed people on this island freely identify, either though minority non expectance or majority pressure as black which concludes that being white is bad yes. Why is that do mixed people at some point say hey I’m going to deny half of myself. Just the other day I hear someone tell a mixed girl that she is not mixed and that there is no such thing she is black and all ways will be black. I just want to know as I see it mixed people will be the wave of the future and until we are all mixedup we will say stuck on the race issue.


                    • Think about it says:

                      I’ll comment on that because I am mixed myself. I personally identify more with white Bermudians as I find most black Bermudians I encounter to be rude, arrogant and ignorant.

                      @ Chris,

                      You need to calm down mate, what’s with all the name calling? I never said that it was a golden age when UBP was in power, but I did notice a lot less people were struggling back then. I also noticed that the UBP didn’t make it a habit of hiring incompetent or inexperienced people to head up ministries and waste tax payers money. How is it that the current head of Tourism can admit that she has no experience and doesn’t no much about Toursim still keep her job? I can get all the other seedy things politicians do, like stealing money or whatever. But it’s one thing to have a theif in power who takes little bits at a time, and complete morons in power that piss away large sums of money at once(PLP)

                      Go ahead and keep defending the PLP mate, but I can tell you this- They don’t give a damn about you.

              • wow says:

                then get back to work and surf bernews on your own time… surely your not being paid to browse the internet during work hours…

          • Yup says:

            This is on point. This is a case of animal farm. The PLP is acting as did the UBP of the day. Government overspending. Government corruption. The PLP was voted into power because the people of Bermuda wanted to see something different. Well, we got it and we still aren’t satisfied. So…when people get entirely fed up, there will be another changing of the guards and we will go through this all over again. Nature of the beast.

    • True Bermudian says:


  16. Common Sense says:

    I firmly believe that this is a sad day for Bermuda tourism. Tony Brannon is outspoken so we all know he tells it like he sees it – regardless of political affiliation. He had complained about UBP policies way before the PLP came to power. Tony also knows as much as anyone I know about the entertainment scene in Bermuda so he is not only candid in expressing his opinions but he also has a level of expertise that made him ideal to be on the Tourism Board. Unfortunately, some civil servants and some heads of Government do not want to hear dissenting or alternative opinions even though different points of views are essential when making critical decisions about our 2nd most vital industry. I don’t always agree with Tony Brannon but I have a great deal of respect for his passion for tourism and his love of Bermuda. This is a case of talent going to waste.

  17. Beezlebub says:

    Tony is the guy. Regardless of all the hate on this thread what can either side say to his idea of a Tourism Authority? What are the pros and cons of that? Sounds like a great idea if you ask me.

  18. Hmmmmm says:

    Brannon is a legend in his own lunchbox. If every Bermudian entertainer, good, bad and indifferent is employed presently; South P, Elbow and Hamilton P are all full, cruise ships are here in abundance and full…..and he’s still not happy? He, like so many, is looking for an 80s experience that ain’t never coming back. You will never have those numbers again simply because there’s nowhere for them to stay. What you see is what you get until we have some new hotels. The real story here is that Patrice thought she could stick her finger in Ewart’s eye by appointing his nemesis and prove in so doing that the problem was him and not Brannon. Well, Ms. Minors has now learned the hard way a lesson that her boss is learning too: the same people who were crazy in October are just as crazy and unhelpful now. If only Patrice, Paula and the rest had been more mature they could’ve saved themselves the trouble.

    • 32n64w says:

      The reason there’s nowhere for people to stay is because the total number of guest beds has halved in the last 10+ years (Sonesta, Lantana, etc.).

    • UncleElvis says:

      “every Bermudian entertainer, good, bad and indifferent” is NOT employed presently. To say they are is either completely naive, completely misinformed or the worst kind of lying political hackery there is.

      The cruise ships may be full, but they’re STAYING full. No one is coming off and spending money. Go stand on Front Street for 20 minutes and look for shopping bags. There are maybe a couple from the tshirt places, but that’s it.

  19. Winnie says:

    Well at least we can now resume the party at Hawkins island, smh wishful thinking.

  20. Terry says:

    Hmmmmm… you talk sh%t.

    Guess what. The “lunchbox” is empty. Deal with it…………..

    Oh thats right, your educated and have a job. Not for long bro…….well with your ties, your house in Florida needs a new ……..

    Talk about Fatways…………………………

  21. Preto Plato says:

    This man seems a bit unstable. However he does make one valid point, we should have had gaming a LONG time ago!

    • Rockfish#2 says:

      @Preto Plato.
      I will refrain from commenting on your many posts which cover almost every topic.
      However, I must say that you really work hard at singing for your supper/ earning your keep!

      • Terry says:

        Oh come on “Rocky”….detz vat dey pey hyme four….jingus……

        Problem is, his/her Plate/to is gonna be empty but we already discussed that prior. Poor black people they suck it up. Yeah I said that but history proves we would not be where we are, not even close without a negro, a Gee anda few 39 thieves.

      • LOL (original) says:

        Must be a Senate post in the future. ;)


    • Red says:

      Plato – Unstable, maybe, however he is correct in saying that this group have no idea what they are doing.

      Dust off the Monitor led BATT plan ( 880k that it cost this govt. to produce )and implement it Asap….

  22. Triangle Drifter says:

    And the disasterous beat of Bermuda’s tourism goes on while elsewhere tourism, while not booming, goes on in a healthy fashion.

    Today I sit in a campground in Talkeetna, Alaska. Last night it was at least 80% full. Right behind this campground is the train station for Talkeetna. I watch trains stop to transfer passengers onto waiting buses. These buses are owned by companys such as Celebrity Cruise Lines & Princess Cruises. They have their own train cars.

    Up to 10 loaded buses leave per train stop.

    Walking around the little village of Talkeetna yesterday, the place was booming. Shop sales people were eager to help.

    Keep on drinking the PLP Koolaid Bermuda. Keep on ignoring people like Tony Brannon. Real soon Bermuda will be a tourism backwater.

    “I will turn tourism around in 100 days” Said David Allen in 1998. The suckers believed him. They also believed a bunch of other impossible promises from the PLP.

  23. Sara says:

    yay PLP, your leading us in such great ways…. geesh you SUCK! TB tryin to come in with new ideas and nope they dont wanna hear that!!!!
    seriously tho, PLP really are KILLING Bermuda, (well whats left)

    • The Truth says:

      If this PLP government are re-elected there should be an investigation. IE: heads should be examined. One government will sent up the creek with one paddle, the PLP government will sent you up the creek with no paddles, and with a hole in your hull.

  24. The Truth says:

    A minister who hasn’t got a clue as to what she is doing. And as always if you cross them you will get the Ewart Brown chop.

  25. Parent says:

    My God this is depressing reading – so many of you arguing back and forth without substance. What will it take to have constructive dialogue. There so much bitching and blaming about black vs white, PLP vs ‘opposition’, all the bad stuff that has happened in the past. At what point do we truly wake up, draw a line in the sand and work together and move forward to rebuild this island (yes, ISLAND, not to be confused with ‘Country’ which so many like to call it!). I fully expect that none of my children (all Bermudian) will want to live and work here in the future, because there will be nothing left to do that will support a decent livelihood. *Sigh*

  26. What is going on? says:

    Vote in the OBA and maybe they would ask Mr. Tony Brannon to set up the Tourism Dept. (non-political)……. and then watch Bermuda take off!

  27. Malachi says:

    I don’t know Tony that well, but from what I can gather he is a forward and progressive thinking person. And while I really do not care to discuss the merits of the Minister’s decision per se (she probably done Tony a favour!), the real issue is the mentality of the Ministry or, perhaps, the entire Government.

    One problem we have with tourism is that the powers that be are so hung up on this “moral” rubbish that they cannot see the forest for the trees. We need to allow gambling (even if only for the visitor); legalize a certain amount of personal possesion of marijuana – in general simply stop acting like a bunch of pompous asses. This is Bermuda, and most of us mere mortals are aware of the sometimes unethical (if not illegal) acts of our parliamentarians and other influential individuals. And yet it is these same individuals who then have the audacity to implement these so-called ‘moral’ edicts which often cannot even be enforced.

    It’s is clearly time for a new brand of politican.

    Ironically, with the forming of the new political party, no such brand appears imminent.

  28. W.T.F.??? says:

    Tony don’t look like dem!!
    dat’s y!

  29. Vigil Auntie says:


    • LOL (original) says:

      Of England? That would be the Premier’s push for independence……..Some where over the rainbow……………………

      LOL from never never land

  30. memory meister says:

    Well , well , well….what a suprise…NOT! Anybody that has known Brannon over the years wouldn’t be either. The man is only interested in himself, all his grandiose ideas would always have to be all about him. A very self serving narcissistic individual with a vindictive spirit if he does not get what he feels is due. minors just got away from one of those narcy loonies, I dont think she fancied dealing with another.

    Cant you all see how Brannon is always kicking and screaming like a child who cant have what he wants. look back over the years at his vitriolic videos and personal attacks on politicians and adversaries alike, if Brannon was given anymore stature in the running of Bermuda disaster would be upon us like never before. when will you people realize he is no different from the other self serving politicians, he sees himself as the great white hope. I have no doubt he is loving every minute since this firing, he is more famous than ever….ha ha ha..the joke is on all of you……well done Brannon…..feed that ego !

    • navin johnson says:

      Name a politician that does not have an ego as big as the great outdoors so what is the issue with Mr. Brannon’s ego?.. The Government cannot accept criticism under any circumstances even if they are completely and totally wrong…The tourism board was doomed when Mr. Butterfield announced a weekend meeting to discuss the frame of reference for the board…frame of reference? do something …do anything… dont go to a hotel and eat cake for a weekend…..put a politician or a bureaucrat on a board and that ends any hope of action…and if a doorman is the best person to know the pulse of tourism put The Deputy Premier in charge…why bother…put Government in charge and nothing gets done… is that census coming along?

  31. memory meister says:

    just to make one final point, he makes a lot of sense in that video, and maybe he is right….but he needs to respect others opinions and convince some that he has grown up a lot and is not just looking out for himself. he kinda reminds me of Ewart…..

  32. Johnny Eve says:

    I would just like to say, if Tony Brannon is so great and is so concerned about tourism why does he have to be on the board to promote tourism. Since he knows so much about tourism and has so much experience with his 30 years in the business, he should be able to set up his own programs as a private entity. Since he knows so much about tourism he can invest his own money into said programs, and since he is so great he should make a lot of money off of his great ideas.
    I’m just saying, if he is so great why does he need government to do his work?

    • In General says:

      That is just the thing – Tony does do his own programs to help promote Bermuda and Bermudians. He works on a regular basis to make sure things are done. Many of the programs that bring people here and that all Bermudians enjoy Tony has a hand in.

    • sandgrownan says:

      That was pretty dumb

    • UncleElvis says:


      Why should Government have to do the job that they’re supposed to do?
      I mean, it’s not like they were elected by the people of Bermuda to do it or anything!

  33. relevant says:

    @Johnny Eve and Memory Meister consider removing your past thoughts of TB and listening to what he says in regards to the current challenge. He is saying a lot of the right things, a country that relies on Tourism as a major economic pillar without a plan is like a chicken running around without a head! The TB was tasked to give the country a strategy (remember their retreat at Fairmont to do just that?) An outline needs to be given to the country so we know whether we are catering to the Hoteliers, the cruise ships, the sailing community. We gotta figure out if we are doing fractionals, resorts, or cottages. We cant continue throwing millions of dollars at the novel ideas that trend (Belmont Hills, Tuckers Point) and then find out they aren’t a fit for Bermuda and then start changing laws (selling fractionals to International businesses, allowing fractional owners to drive cars) to try to stay afloat. We will create a mess withought the proper forsight! Our carribbean counterparts are miles ahead with their island, highlighting to the masses what their niche is! Time for us to overcome our political agendas and demand to be kept in the loop of the process of the strategy and when it can be expected. TB you have my support (at least based on the email you sent above).!

    • randy says:

      The sad thing is that this govt have a plan that they paid significant money for back in 99-2000. As mentioned by Red above, the PLP paid close to 800k for the Monitor Group (with the assistance of the Bermuda Alliance for Tourism ) to write a Strategic/ Business Plan for the late David Allen.

      The fact that it never saw the light of day is not surprising as we are dealing with politicians that have no desire to delegate authority. This plan is fantastic, written by extremely intelligent MIT/ Harvard types and assisted by hundreds of locals that have industry experience.

      The fact that we have entrusted this vital industry to a board that for the most part have no clue about the industry and as Brannon states have not presented any evidence that

      • relevant says:

        WOW!!! As a country we have so many initiatives that are well researched and presented. We fall very short when it comes to implementation! Its a shame.

    • memory meister says:

      Agreed, he says some good things, but…talk is cheap, especially from him. Perhaps if Dupereault or someone with a more creditable reputation made these suggestions in a civilized fashion. Instead of “scweam scweam scweeem till I get what I want”

  34. Eric C says:

    Tony may beleive in self promotion…which he does..but so what..doesn’t everybody sell themselves in one way or another? He is a very creative person and BDA needs visionary people like him to help a failing Industry. So what if he is outspoken..sometimes the truth hurts..6 months of hanging out todays biz world..doesn’t cut it….bottom line. He wanted more action less words..they wanted snails pace movement…a clash just bound to happen. Firing him is not the solution..that is just a high school response. Having dialogue to tame down the fire is the best response. Look…Tony really puts his heart and soul in tourism..not just for his fame or gain…bottom line..he is a visionary and has the background skills and intelligence in this Industry..nobody can deny that… owner, Beach Tennis International, Hawkins Island Cruise entertainer. Promoting Bermuda Music Internationally…just a few Tourist related things he has been in…He simply asked Govt …if they needed some help…they agreed….whats wrong with that. More help the better I say ! So before you knock Tony…know the facts first!

    • I have no desire to engage in a “TUG OF WAR” with seemingly myopic politican/s. People with far more on the line than I told the people in attendance at the recent Tourism Retreat that Bermuda Hotels are in dire trouble. One hotelier said he has not made a dime in 10 years, and just keeps the doors open – he added “Does anyone think new investors are going to pour in money to Bermuda when existing properties are struggling”?

      The Elbow Beach owners have sunk over $ 200 MILLION since 1991, and have yet to see a return on their investment. Even rich arab princes can walk away, and we all know the struggles of Newstead, The Reefs, Tuckers Point. Club Med is no closer to seeing construction beginning than it was 2 years ago. PINK BEACH is NOT sold. 9 Beaches have endured months and months of waiting for Government to pass legislation to sort out the lease – the money just might walk away if we are NOT careful.

      30 years of decline, 17 under UBP and 13 under PLP means BOTH political parties presided over the precipitous decline and closure of over 83 hotels and guest houses.

      Other countries “moved with the times”. Bermuda has simply not. Our collective future is at stake, and I hope the people of Bermuda have had enough ?

      Bermuda Tourism needs to be operated as a business. If you want further business failures then keep doing it the same way, as that is what is going to happen. I thought that the Premier would be true to her word that things would not be “business as usual”. Well from where I sit, after 6 months on the Tourism Board without ONE LINE of a National Tourism plan written as of June 15th, it is worse than before :(

      In the world of business this would not happen……
      By the way I have asked that my few $$$$ for Tourism Board meetings be given to The Coalition for The Protection of Children

      There are many good folks who work in the BDOT. Whilst Bermuda will have a good period between now and August, the fact remains that the overall structure needs a complete rethink. Once we address all the issues that were tabled at the Tourism Retreat Bermuda will see a brilliant future. To cherry pick a NATIONAL TOURISM plan will be “politics still in control”. It is time to change and……fast.


      • Think about it says:

        I’m with you Mr. Brannon, but sadly we live in a country where the head of a department(tourism) cares more about parking tickets on their GP vehicle than the state of tourism.

        I’m counting the days until my U.K. passport arrives, it’s time to abandon ship.

        • Chris says:

          “Think about it” well leave then. It’s people like you that Bermuda doesn’t need. There’s a problem here so I’ll just run away. I’m glad that you have the option to abandon ship and go somewhere else but many of us don’t have that luxury. And for the record I have my UK passport and could leave anytime I choose but Bermuda is my home and I would rather stay and see what I can do to help make it a better place. Obviously you don’t care about Bermuda because how could you possibly the country or the people by leaving. You represent a portion of Bermudians that don’t care about the island or it’s people. All you care about is yourself and how YOU are affected. I’d like to round all of you up and ship you to the UK where life is so much better for you. At least then we would know who cares and who will try and improve this island no matter how small their contribution. Let me give you some helpful advice: Call the Deputy Governor’s Office, they can help to expedite your UK passport application. We need to help you abandon ship as soon as possible.

          • Eric C says:

            Chris do not generalize in your view of Bermudians living overseas. I am Bermudian and live overseas and love that little Island. You have an option with a UK Passport to be part of the European Union. Do you know how many people from around the world that would die for a EU passport. Try millions of people…who live in desperate situations around the world in wars/conflicts etc…So(Libya,Syria,Yemen, name a few…Plus most of asia…etc etc etc…Bermuda is a special place..but quite frankly for 67,000 have a ridiculous amount of people who cannot live in Harmony..for one reason or another. Always blaming some person or Expat for your problems….this guy is just frustrated with the current system..and let out a little frustration. Bermudians are dead lucky to have it so easy to get a EU passport….don’t you forget it….one day it might not be there !

            • Chris says:

              To Eric C. I’m not generalizing Bermudians who live overseas. People have the right to live where they want to. I have relatives who live overseas and I have a UK passport. But when people start talking about abandoning, I have an issue. Things aren’t going the way you want so you run away from the problem instead of working to fix it. And if we manage to fix things here, he’ll probably be one of the first to come running back.

              • Think about it says:

                @ Eric C.

                Thank you for putting Chris in his place


                How are you not generalizing? When you say things like “You and people like you” thats exactly what it sounds like. Who are you to attack me for wanting to leave a country that I feel is going down the drain? I’m supposed to sacrifice my family and I’s happiness by staying here to help YOU and the other 67,000 people who cant get their sh*t together?! NO!!! NOT GONNA HAPPEN! That’s like me telling someone fleeing Libya to stay where they are and help their fellow man. If I want a better life for myself and my family, and leaving Bermuda is the only way to achieve that, then I’m gone, it’s that simple.

                • Chris says:

                  Are you comparing Bermuda to Libya? Are you serious?

                  So me and the other 67,000 people of Bermuda can’t get their sh*t together huh? That sounds like the most generalized statement of all not to mention ignorant.

                  If the only way for you to be happy is to leave, then bye bye. Go to another country where the streets are paved with gold and you live happily ever after. Stop commenting about Bermuda issues because you don’t care about me and the other 67,000 people of Bermuda that can’t get their sh*t together. Please take my advise and hurry up and get your passport because me and the other 67,000 people of Bermuda that can’t get their sh*t together don’t need you either.

                  • Think about it says:

                    Lol, I like people like you. You make me laugh. Where did I say that Bermuda was Libya? Stop reading into things that aren’t there. Another thing, I never claimed that I wasn’t generalizing, you were.

                    Ok, let me be more specific for you. I want to leave because the 35,510(53% who voted PLP) cant get their sh*t together. The other 31,490, I’m sorry that you have to live in a country where your peers cant get their sh*t together Lol

                    • Chris says:

                      Oh, I’m so enlightened now. I see, we should have left the UBP in charge and none of these issues would have come up. Tourism would still be booming, gun violence would never have been an issue, the drug problem would have been eradicated, the worldwide economic downturn would never have affected us and Cedarbridge would have been a success. Ok, so if I go and talk to my “peers” and convince them to get their sh*t together and vote for the OBP (The new UBP) will that solve all of our issues. And by the way I already have my UK passport so I guess you’re stuck here until you get yours. LOL.

                    • LOL (original) says:

                      You are proving Think about it’s point right now.


                    • Think about it says:


                      Thanks, Lol

                      @ Chris

                      The big difference between the PLP and the UBP is that most of the UBP members own and run businesses, which to me is important. The tourism industry in particular needs to be ran like a business and the UBP would be the best people for the job.

                      p.s. You can try and make fun all you want about my UK passport not being here because even if it doesn’t come, I have status to live in the U.S. I just prefer the UK.

                      Who’s laughing now? Lol

              • Eric C says:

                Hi Chris..people don’t have the right to live where they want to…passports give you the right of abode. Most Bermudians don’t run away from Bermuda…they just way up their options for a better life…where they can reside..(Visa,Passports)

  35. WOOOOOOOOW! says:

    That was the most amazing thing someone has ever said. SOOOOOOOOOO Many people feel the same way, but no one comes out and says it. I commend you Mr. Brannon. I am so happy you came out and said it to their faces.

  36. Great says:

    If “Ms Minors said that she knew “little” about tourism, and would be relying on the board to develop a tourism plan.,” then why is she tourism minister if she does not know much about it. Thats like saying I am going to hire an electrician that doesn’t know anything about wiring or electricity. If these ministers are getting paid over $150, 000 a year I expect them to know EXACTLY what they are doing. Mrs. Minors should be fired, not Mr. Brannon.

    • relevant says:


      We need to look at islands like the Bahamas, Tortola, and JA where there numbers are much better than ours. The Ministers and/or junior Ministers actually come up through the ranks of the industry. Now that’s what we need BDA!

  37. Concerned says:


    • randy says:

      Tony is no more qualified or capable of reversing our tourism problems than the good minister Minors.. His ideas are basic/ simplistic which should be applauded, however he does not have the expertise nor experience to lead a properly managed tourism authority, nor does he have the ability to create a proper strategy.

      Tony speaks of his Cornell education and the plight of the Elbow Beach. I would like to remind Tony that his good friend Bill Shoaf, another Cornell grad, did significant damage to that property. He was able to reverse 3 positive financial years under Whyndham in very quick time and was eventually dismissed. Another pal/ former Cornell grad was raced from the Sonesta Beach. In short, having a Cornell education does not automatically make one a good manager.

      I fully agree that the PLP have screwed up in a big, massive way, however Tony is not the answer and I suspect he knows it…This is a time when we have to put aside our xenophobia and hire real experts, even if they come from Mars..

      • Eric C says:

        Randy,,,seems like you have a phobia about Cornell Hotel Grads. Anyway …Tony is not trying to head up Tourism. just be part of a solution. A bosrd which takes 6 months and accomplishes quite frankly useless. Tell this to the hundreds of folks looking for a few jobs at Fairmount. The person who was elected as head…does not have the background in this Industry. In the real world…outside of Bermuda…she would have never been appointed to that position. Bermuda is in a crisis scenario with Tourism…and action speaks louder than words…obviously after many years of a Gov backed Tourism Model..does not work…bottom line..Under UBP/PLP it has failed…time to let an indepedent authority with Hotel/Tourism professionals head up this area….the people Of BDA should demand it..for the future of the country.

    • memory meister says:

      ding bat

  38. rick olson says:

    TB is smart enough to know GIVE PEOPLE WHAT THEY WANT ! We have our heads so far up are ass we actually think we have a top notch product ? We need massive change if we want to be on the map our competition is beating us like it is a cricket match !

    • randy says:

      Which should include getting out of the way and letting real experts do the job of which he is nt..

    • memory meister says:

      I bet one would be bring back the gambling machines that made you rich……

  39. Bermyman says:

    We need to modernize all aspects of our tourism product. We need gaming on Hotel properties to facilitate investment. We need to change our attitude, Bermuda will not market itself. We need to develop Hamilton waterfront so it can actually represent something attractive and vibrant. What is wrong with this Government? Seriously, you need to have guts and make decisions that impact robust change. 6 Months to produce a report is terribly un-professional. Seriously it does not cut it! We need to modernize quickly we need hotel investment to boost our economy and provide jobs. DO SOMETHING POSITIVE AND PROGRESSIVE PLP, YOU’RE DESTROYING THIS ISLAND’S FUTURE!!!!!!!!

  40. CUSHITE says:

    At the end of the day I am not sure what government or board can do to get more tourist to this island. It all boils down to price an hotels and everything is just to exspensive why are we kidding ourselves. We all go to other places because price does influence choice of destination.

    • memory meister says:

      yay!! some one thats not trying to make it political. Price is everything. Well said. Neither PLP, UBP, BDA or Brannon can change years and years of bad attitude and greed. Sadly things will not correct until Bermuda has hit bottom and that is a very very long way to go.

  41. Hubert says:

    There’s something wide eyed and freaky about the man on this video clip. He’s used to running businesses (some of which failed) and getting his own way rather than work as a disciplined member of a team. That’s pretty obvious.

    • wow says:

      god forbid we get a leader type….we need more sheep….muppet