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Opinion

  • Prime Minister adds insult to injury

    Joseph Muscat never struck me as a man of principle. Today, I’m certainly not alone in thinking that. Barely two years in government, he is a Prime Minister battered by political scandals. In the run-up to the 2013 general election, Muscat assured...

  • Soho’s coming to Malta

    Soho’s coming to Malta

    Former European Court of Human Rights judge Giovanni Bonello made a chilling statement about the state of our justice system last week. He said: “It is a miracle that justice can be served at all within such a flawed system of appointing...

  • Mint at Castille Place

    When the Knights came, there were all kinds of coins used in Malta. Then, for practical reasons and to make a point of their sovereignty, the Knights started minting their own coins and built their mint in what is still in fact called Old Mint...

  • Better economic reporting

    Would the Enron or World Comm stories have been different if reporters had probed beyond news releases coming from official sources or company releases that touted their own glowing performances? Would public policy play out differently if...

  • Vilification of Catholic religion

    Many are quite erroneously reaching the hurried conclusion that the law is removing the crime of vilification of the Catholic religion from our statute book. In fact, the legislator is not purporting to do anything of the sort. The government did...

  • A stronger pension system?

    The government-appointed Pensions Strategy Group has published a document entitled ‘Strengthening the pension system’, which aims to provide a strategy for adequate and sustainable pensions in Malta. Most members of the group are civil servants...

  • Will phoenix rise again?

    Will phoenix rise again?

    In 1992, Parliament approved the first Structure Plan for the Maltese islands. With hindsight, not many were aware of the implications of the Structure Plan, the Development Planning Act and of the then Planning Authority. For others, this was a...

  • Dun Karm has gills and can swim

    I always knew Aphanius fasciatus was destined for glory. The Mediterranean killifish, known in Maltese as bużaqq (‘pot-bellied’), may only be an inch or so long. It is also frankly unspectacular and looks a bit like a Grant Wood guppy. And yet...

  • Maltese language: what future?

    Thousands of parents, pupils and students, writers and authors, translators and interpreters, journalists, broadcasters and publishers, teachers, tutors and proof-readers must be grateful to the Minister of Education for his wise decision to...

  • More urban challenges

    Eight years ago the Kamra tal-Periti, Malta’s chamber of architects, had issued an inspiring paper called ‘The Urban Challenge’. The architects wrote: “If we want the best for our successors, we cannot afford to be complacent. Neither can we...

  • We’re not all right, Jack

    The incidents surrounding Hungarian student Jack Daboma’s arrest are symptomatic of a number of worrying and ingrained aspects of Maltese culture. First, a cockeyed transport and bus card system destined to put people off before they’ve even tried...

  • Another game of charades

    I am a great fan of telling it as it is and ‘what you see is what you get’ behaviour. I understand that a degree of civility is required for people to get along, but I cannot relate to people who interact with others under totally false pretences.

  • Are we the children of Cain?

    The Irish author John Connolly in his book The Wolf in Winter quite rightly writes that one should “know a man by his metaphors”. (Undoubtedly in this gender ideology driven times the same can be said for women.) The thesis of George Lakoff, the...

  • Doodle doodle do

    Doodle doodle do

    A year ago or so, a new recruit at the office came up to me after the morning meeting and asked whether I could pass on some of the notes I had taken about a certain story we were discussing. “Ahem,” I said, as I coughed the polite Maltese xerqa...

  • Believe me, it is not OK to be gay...

    Recently Sylvanus was privileged to be granted an audience by the distinguished Alabama preacher and card-carrying bigot, the Rev. Richard ‘Call me Dick’ Hedde of the Capiscopalean Mission of St Gavin the Butch. As most people may know, the Rev.

  • Heritage saved forever, for all

    Fifty years ago, on July 9, Din l-Art Ħelwa was founded with the aim of saving our nation’s heritage, our open spaces and natural environment. Today, 50 years later, Din l-Art Ħelwa’s volunteers are still working tirelessly to uphold these...

  • Summer ennui strikes

    Summer ennui strikes

    If you’re reading this online, you know what Facebook is. You probably know what it is even if you don’t read me online, because involvement with FB has become pretty ubiquitous. In fact, if the general age and aspect of the people who are asking...

  • The silence of the banks

    Few rights in life are absolute. Freedom of expression is subject to the laws of libel. The police must maintain order but cannot use excessive force. We all agree that the banks have a right to protect their customers’ confidentiality but even...

  • Daughters of Enlightenment

    Daughters of Enlightenment

    July 4 and July 14 are the national days of the US and France respectively. The first commemorates the adoption of the Declaration of Independence by the Continental Congress in 1776 that transformed the rebellion by the 13 North American colonies...

  • This wasted land of ours

    The construction industry has a poor image. Reports of large-scale corruption involving contractors and governments are commonplace. The manic clatter of jack hammers drives people insane. Clothes, cars, trees, windows, furniture are coated with...

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