…and the boat on judiciaryHere we go again! Gridlock! This time it’s on the appointment of the Chancellor and Chief Justice – the two highest officials in the Judiciary. As your Eyewitness has taken pains to belabour, one of the unfortunately unwelcome features of our system of governance is the fusion of the Executive with the Legislative branch – leaving only the Judiciary to prevent a permanent, existential dictatorship after every “democratic” election.If the Executive were to have unfettered power to appoint the members of the Judiciary, then Lord help us!! For this reason, the President can only appoint ordinary judges, who’ve been nominated by the Judicial Service Commission. For the aforementioned two apex officials, there’s a special CONSTITUTIONAL (Art 127 (1) ) feature which brings in the Opposition Leader: he HAS TO AGREE to the nominees of the President. There is absolutely no ambiguity on this one!!This is a critical feature meant to increase the impartiality and integrity of the Judiciary on the assumption that, in a country as fractured as Guyana, there at least ought to be agreement on that final bulwark of our democratic governance by the “two sides”. Recognising, however, that the Opposition Leader and the President might not find agreement on the nominees, and to prevent the former from having an absolute veto on these key appointments, the Constitution makes provision (Art 127 (2) ) for the President to make temporary appointments until agreement can be reached. The selected individuals are said to be “acting”.However, as we found in the last set of appointments, the “acting” appointments lasted for more than a decade!!! Honestly, this doesn’t do the Judiciary any good as far as reinforcing its legitimacy to the populace. Only recently, the President of the CCJ – and our Bar Association — had to bemoan the then status quo, only to have no change when the incumbents retired and new appointments were made. If two generations of Guyanese will not have the experience of witnessing substantive Chancellors and Chief Justices in action, they can be forgiven for believing that that branch of Government is as polarised and partisan as the fused Executive/Legislative branch.On the Opposition Leader’s rejection of the President’s two nominees, the President says he’ll have to seek “legal advice”. From whom? His Attorney General? The fella’s already steered him wrong on so many occasions, in spite of being given five legal “old heads” as advisors!! And advice about what? The President has only one route open to him – the “acting” route. To suggest otherwise, as the President’s spokesperson has done, is only to muddy the judicial waters and further delegitimise the credentials of our Judiciary.Let’s not have our top Justices belittled as being qualified only for the Academy Awards!…on Dutch DiseaseIt’s hard to believe someone can stick their foot into their mouth as often as Raphael “Nassau” Trotman! It’s as if he enjoys hopping around on the solitary foot left!! Addressing the Oil Summit, the man whose Ministry co-sponsored the event told the participants that Guyana’s focus isn’t only on oil, but also on food production to ensure a balanced economy!!He certainly must’ve had the foreigners rolling on the floor laughing their a55 off!! These are business professionals. Before coming to Guyana they would’ve had such thorough briefings on the Guyanese economy as to make Trotman’s head spin!! Every one of them knows that “Dutch Disease” – where other sectors of the economy are neglected in favour of oil — is the existential threat facing Guyana; and that the Government fired over 5,700 workers in agriculture with no plan in place to employ them in alternative food production!!“Nassau” Trotman confirmed he’s all bluff and no substance. ROFLMAO!!!…on adviceOK, so we’re the new kid on the (oil) block. “Nassau” Trotman’s oil contract proved THAT!! But what’s with the President and his oil advisor? Why have a professional available and ignore his advice??Is it all a pappy show …like the sugar CoI?
Re “4 more years: priceless” (July 23): Four more years for council members is not going to get any more done or teach them any more than eight years. After watching the council meeting on July 25, the only thing these people showed was how rude they are. First of all, the 10 a.m. meeting could not start till 10:14 a.m. because not enough members could get there on time. Second, the president had to ask the council members to be quiet so the speakers could be heard. Manners are something you learn at a young age. These people showed they have never learned them. They are above everyone else. – Jane McKinsey – Jerry F. Piro Sun Valley How many workers? Re “Powerless” (Your Opinions, July 26): George Killbride asks, regarding a recent power outage during which various foods in his freezer were ruined and had to be thrown out: “Why can’t these companies build for maximum power use?” Having read the whole story, to me a more important question is this: Why did it take “Ten nice men in two trucks” to respond to the situation, when only one of them got out to throw an overload switch to restore power? Sounds like overkill to me. – Anita Work Sylmar Do this, then whine Re “Outage outrage” (Our Opinions, July 25): Calling all applicants who want to work for good pay assisting the minimum number of crews working west end of San Fernando Valley. From Granada Hills south to Mulholland Drive and the 405 Freeway, west, to Valley Circle. Working overhead on poles or in underground vaults. De-energized or energized up to 34,000 volts. Always exciting. Work possible on weekends. During emergencies up to 16 hours a day. During the winter and summer. In the wind and rain or up to 119 degrees. With little or no appreciation from the public or any other group. – Christine Martinson West Hills Common knowledge Re “Hot: Power outages” (July 24): As parts of the San Fernando Valley were suffering from the recent catastrophe, I was wondering why a slew of businesses, closed for the night, need to be lit up like a Christmas tree. Common sense? Yes, wouldn’t it be lovely if people had some? – Christine Peterson Woodland Hills And it’s getting hotter Re “Heat’s on DWP” (July 25): Why is Los Angeles unable to meet the energy needs of its citizens? According to press reports, the infrastructure of our electrical plants is as old as 1929. Why haven’t our elected political leaders insisted on mandatory solar energy and other renewable sources of energy in order to meet the ever growing needs of our population? Who benefits from this crumbling system besides the likes of Enron, the dead Ken Lay and other greedy price manipulators? Why haven’t we as a citizenry held those in “power” accountable? I say vote anyone out who does not consider this a top priority. Lives are at stake, and it’s only getting hotter. – Victoria Minetta Hollywood Passing the DWP buck Re “Heat’s on DWP” (July 25): I was disappointed to read that Councilwomen Wendy Greuel and Jan Perry passed the buck and blamed the Department of Water and Power for the energy emergency in Los Angeles. Since they serve on the City Council’s Environment and Energy Committee that oversees the DWP, they should have anticipated these problems and are as much to blame as the utility itself. – David Fleck Granada Hills Heat and humidity The heat lately has been bad enough, but the humidity makes it even worse. The weather in L.A. has been more akin to Houston than Los Angeles. It occurred to me that if we rid ourselves of gasoline-powered autos and go with hydrogen engines, would the water exhaust from those engines make the humidity in the air worse? Maybe a scientific-minded reader can answer this question. – Armand Vaquer Tarzana Strategy not working Until Jews and Arabs realize that the solution to the Middle East problem is through negotiation and listening to the other side’s point of view there can never be peace. Israel’s strategy for fighting terrorism – so admired in the USA – has led Israel to suffering more terrorist attacks than any other nation, losing more of its citizens to terrorist attacks than any other nation, and still the terrorism is mounting. This strategy can hardly be called a success. The international community after World War II imposed Israel on the Middle East to give Jews a homeland; now the international community should impose a peace on the area before this situation gets too out of control and leads to a much larger conflict. – Paul Hutchinson Calabasas Haste makes waste The mayor’s currently proposed takeover of LAUSD (Nuñez AB 1381) is seemingly based on shaky and loosely interpreted data/studies. It is a hastily conceived bill, shoved through the California Legislature without adequate committee hearings and oversight. During one “Mayoral Town Hall” I attended, the mayor’s staff used PowerPoint presentations without handouts, followed by questions from only carefully selected audience members. Despite frequent requests, the mayor has not publicly released a hard copy of his presentations, nor given citations for the studies referenced. I am suspicious of the need to conceal data/sources, and I invite the mayor to provide the public and legislators with the original data used to support his bill. – Diana Dixon-Davis Chatsworth Israel overreaction? Israel has won all their unprovoked wars so far but they have not been permitted to win the peace. The U.S. restrained Israel from completing the victory and therefore the peace. Recently, when a country is victorious, it occupies the defeated country until a regime, friendly to the victor is installed. In World War II, Germany, Japan and Italy, were neutralized and now exist in peace with the Allies. Israel was never given that privilege, and so the conflict will continue. Israel will never accept defeat. It will resort to the ultimate weapon instead. Israel overreaction? The U.S. reaction to Pearl Harbor: complete obliteration of Hiroshima and Nagasaki and the poisoning of the atmosphere for years thereafter. – Bernard Lehrer Ventura And neither can play Re “Dodger dogs” (July 27): After reading Steve Dilbeck’s excellent column in Thursday’s Daily News, and after seeing “Slayer” at the Long Beach Arena last Saturday night, I realized that “Slayer” and the Dodgers have something in common: “Seasons in the Abyss.” – Matther R. Hines Costa Mesa160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set! AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MORE11 theater productions to see in Southern California this week, Dec. 27-Jan. 2Canoga Park Silence of the lambs Re “Council snubs public views” (July 26): It was obvious that the City Council was trying to muzzle public dissent over the trash fee increase. Normally, when a hot item comes up, it is the first thing on the agenda. This time, the trash fee increase item was put off for many hours until all bedlam broke out in the audience. All 15 council members were allowed to talk their heads off, trying to convince the audience to accept the cost increase. Only Greig Smith dissented and got a round of applause. The people of Los Angeles did not have a chance to vote. Four more years?