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Opinion

  • Secrecy of warden fines

    In May, with the usual fanfare, the Labour government announced the creation of the Local Enforcement Systems Agency (LESA). In the name of simplification of bureaucracy, another bureaucratic entity was created. When the local enforcement system...

  • Concrete and specifications

    The poor quality concrete at Mater Dei Hospital and the case of Binja Buqana, among others, highlight the problem of concrete and proper specifications. These are not the only instances as there are many private residences with crumbling ceilings...

  • A surreal state of government

    Prime Minister Joseph Muscat spent his time in Opposition lecturing us all on the need for a clean and transparent way of doing politics. Following the 2013 general election, people have started to look elsewhere. The gap between rhetoric and...

  • Evidence in the cloud

    Evidence in the cloud

    The internet’s continued presence in the everyday lives of citizens has increased in more ways than one. More people use it to pursue educational aims, participate in social and cultural life, do business, and to interact with one another or with...

  • Where the wind blows

    The EU met on March 8 to decide whether to extend for another 15 years, the use of glyphosate, a crucial weedkiller ingredient. The decison was abruptly postponed at the eleventh hour. Glyphosate is a non-selective herbicide that is widely used in...

  • Westminster and Malta

    The British have historically held the view that government should not be just about formal systems of government enshrined in a rigidly written constitution but should be much more about the people into whose hands are entrusted the levers of...

  • Towards building a new polity

    In the past 60 years of integration, we have built a union of freedom, opportunities and fundamental rights, and we have grown from the Community of Six into the Union of 28. The European Union is facing very tough challenges, however. We stand at...

  • Dilemmas of writing

    When I write my weekly column in the Times of Malta, I use a rather systematic procedure. I normally write the first draft on a fixed day, I go through it the day after, and I then send it to the editor. In the days preceding the actual writing...

  • Off-brochure payments

    The editorial titled ‘Botched start to new tourism tax’ (March 15) was as timely as it was concerning. The Malta Hotels and Restaurants Association and the government mishandled the 50c eco contribution right from its birth. The idea of raising...

  • The master manipulators

    You find them everywhere, and throughout your life: manipulative people with their own agenda looking to get something out of you. The more you encounter these people, the more you realise that their tactics go further than just flattery and false...

  • Stay-at-home and get paid? Hmph

    Stay-at-home and get paid? Hmph

    They are internationally referred to as the ‘Mommy wars the perennial debate for and against stay-at-home mothers and working mothers. This week the argument was revived by Fr Charles Attard, director of the Cana Movement, who told the...

  • The drawn-out US election

    The drawn-out US election

    The American presidential primary and caucus elections are almost half over and although two leading candidates have emerged from both parties, the parties’ eventual nominee is not yet certain. Before looking at how the presidential race is going,...

  • A Cabinet reshuffle, willy-nilly

    As I write, the Panama matter has three protagonists: Konrad Mizzi, the Prime Minister, and Simon Busuttil and the Nationalist Party generally. Wednesday’s circus in Valletta was a mistake, for three reasons. First, the notion that the case...

  • Give us back the dignity we deserve

    What this country has been living through over the past eight weeks has been nothing short of surreal. We have witnessed the development of a unique scenario for a democratic country in the EU. In this case, its uniqueness is not something we...

  • Secrecy has gone viral

    After the Panama Papers, will anyone ever feel that their data is secure again? Whether it was a breach of the internal data system or the e-mail server at Mossack Fonseca, secret documents are not necessarily safe. At every digital gateway or...

  • White Paper not good enough

    Estate agency work has for years persisted as the most startling and controversial non-regulated activity in Maltese law. The law does not provide any comprehensive legal framework for people engaging in the activity, which is very lucrative and...

  • Twisting slowly in the wind

    Chances are that when people think of the Watergate scandal they think of the mythicised version of the scandal; the one where intrepid journalistic duos (looking like the Robert Redford and Dustin Hoffman starring in the screen adaptation) meet a...

  • Village to clean the stables

    The bishops’ statement of March 9 was strong. There is a “mentality of cronyism and nepotism and growing discrimination which is the result of in­­creasing partisanship within the public administration, in which genuine merit and competence are...

  • Vote for the alternative alternative…

    So Marlene, miskina, is feeling a little lonely in Parliament these days. But instead of sitting around sulking and waiting to get booted out at the next election, she’s decided to do something ‘practical’ instead. Marlene has decided to outflank...

  • This is Malta’s current tragedy

    It is saddening to see Malta in the grips of corruption crises and constant scandals that have damaged our country’s hard-earned international standing just months before Malta assumes the EU presidency. Likewise, it is maddening to see the depths...

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