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Opinion

  • The other sort of garage music...

    “Oh hullo, is that 2133 7799?” “Yes, how can I help you?” “You placed an advert in today’s Times.” “That’s right, yes.” “A garage to let... in Msida.” “Correct, just off the Msida roundabout.” “A large garage?” “Well... you’d be struggling if you...

  • Much in common with

    Much in common with

    Our jet-setting Prime Minister (if it’s Monday, it must be Beijing) was in London to talk about the Commonwealth. Just for the education of the more youthful among my readership, the Commonwealth is a remnant of the British Empire, a...

  • Ending human trafficking

    In the words of American Secretary of State John F. Kerry, “we find perhaps no greater threat to human dignity, no greater assault on basic freedom, than the evil of human trafficking.” With more than 20 million people estimated to be victimised...

  • Not just local elections

    Not just local elections

    The government’s proposal to postpone the next two rounds of local elections, due in 2015 and 2016, to 2019 is based on two arguments: the expense of holding such elections and electoral fatigue. While I do not agree with the proposal as...

  • Police force for our times

    Police force for our times

    This year, we are celebrating our police corps’ 200th anniversary. Sixteen months ago, we found a force that had suffered neglect and was demotivated and demoralised because of lack of decisions by the previous government. We immediately put into...

  • Regular elections matter

    Regular elections matter

    The government has floated the idea – to ‘all stakeholders’ – that all local council elections be postponed to 2019, to coincide with the next European Parliament election. In a democracy, all registered voters are stakeholders. So what should we...

  • Ethics from Brussels

    Ethics from Brussels

    The leader that appeared yesterday on Times of Malta, entitled Worlds Apart On Ethical Issues, is written from a standpoint of ignorance or dishonesty. Times of Malta opts to laud José Manuel Barroso’s ethics. He is the same man who, when elected...

  • A bitter pill to swallow

    A couple of months ago, I was asked to address a seminar about peace. I started my intervention by saying that war is inevitable. It might sound strange to start an intervention on peace with the word war. However, I think that any discourse on...

  • Quality versus squalor

    Quality versus squalor

    The new, energetic Minister for Tourism, Edward Zammit Lewis, has focused on “quality” as the centrepiece of his plan for Malta’s tourism future. He quotes approvingly that the World Tourism Organisation’s (WTO) central objective for tourism...

  • Monkey on our back

    Monkey on our back

    Charity doesn’t atone for sins. Someone should tell our President that. Flabbergasted and lost for words, I had to look up the promotional material of Montekristo Estates to find a description for a sprawling monster in the middle of the island:...

  • Education an important key

    Given its importance to civil society and the economy, it is little wonder that education is always at the top of the civil and economic agenda. It is inextricably linked to the economy – a country cannot make sound economic progress unless its...

  • Lobbying risks corruption

    In a democratic society, lobbying is a potentially legitimate activity. It involves the communication of views and information to legislators and administrators by those who have an interest in informing them of the impacts of the decisions under...

  • Germany on top of the world

    Germany on top of the world

    Germany’s victory in the World Cup is a symbol of the country’s emergence as a major world power, a European economic powerhouse, Europe’s leader and a nation very much at ease with itself after years of shyness and apprehension. This is Germany’s...

  • Common fronts and vigilantes

    This column has consistently argued that it is unwise to talk about migration only when some or other perceived crisis or emergency crops up. Accordingly, I wish to make three somewhat disconnected points on the subject. The first concerns...

  • Courting the Chinese dragon

    China has become a major economic powerhouse and is the second largest economy in the world. Globalisation has been a key success factor and the main driver in modernising the economy and the infrastructure of that country. China registered a 7.5...

  • Negativity back and flourishing

    Negativism is alive and well and living main­­ly at Pietà, at PN headquarters. If by nothing else, consider that in the context of the hounding of Sai Mizzi Liang, the appointee of Malta Enterprise to drum up business in China. The attacks on her...

  • Time for ministerial blues

    Media reports on how Education Minister Evarist Bartolo handled the Skolasajf fiasco say that he has publicly admitted he was irked by the way he was misled into believing that everything would be ‘all right on the night’, when in fact those...

  • It is the silly season

    Every now and again we get a bout of collective hand-wringing because of some survey showing that the great majority of the Maltese people haven’t read anything other than an article in Hello magazine for the past 10 years. This is usually...

  • Human rights: your rights, my rights

    In the mid-1990s I was one of the journalists who covered the visit of a Maltese delegation led by Eddie Fenech Adami, then prime minister, to the People’s Republic of China. It was quite a large delegation. Most, if I remember correctly, came...

  • Out of the box

    Out of the box

    To be honest, I’d never heard the name Jonathan Glazier before Under the Skin started screening at St James Cavalier. Many of you are probably shaking their heads at me, but what can I say. When I read that he is the director behind Scarlett...

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