The Premier's State of the Nation speech

The Premier put together a speech yesterday but apparently only for YouTube. ZBM wound up showing a snippet on their evening news show while VSB wound up broadcasting the clip from the website anyway. Strange that the Premier wouldn't have simply called up the media outlets (including Gov TV) and push out his message, but maybe it was spur of the moment. Not as many people have Internet access as have a television set, but luckily the PLP website posted a transcript of the speech and I suppose the newspapers will be able to post it in its entirety today. Not a big deal in the end, but curious.

As for the content itself, it essentially is a summary of what Government has accomplished in their first session. I wish that each of the 39 passed pieces of legislation was briefed upon, but what can you do. The Premier's also addressed the contentious issue that occurred recently where some of the unions were taking strike action against Government and there was discussions whether or not a government that was led by a labour party was looking after the interests of labour itself.

It's followed up by a not-so-friendly admonition of what he terms the "combined Opposition". Which is, really, the UBP, the Gazette/Mid-Ocean pair and segments of the online community. He brings up a desire for an elevated level of debate, something which we failed to get in any sense of the word, during the election period (here's a quick retort on it). Maybe the next time the House of Assembly is in session we'll see (actually, read about, since it's still not televised on Gov TV or other channel) if the parties concerned can do so.

The Premier informs us that he's contactable via many means including email and Facebook messaging, and I think most people appreciate that the Premier has made himself available in various methods. However I think that there's a section of the community that is frustrated that they can't seem to get straight answers on topics but instead get routed to a press secretary or a canned response, this probably applies to the news media more than most.

He finishes up by bringing up FutureCare, which clearly is the signature landmark of the PLP platform. Providing for seniors and those nearing retirement is an important task that most Bermudians are concerned about.

This speech could only have been topped upon (maybe if ZBM was prepared) by a nice little round table discussion of it a la the election day coverage by those on each side of the political spectrum. Would have been interesting.

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