Well on the 21st December Llanito World was one year old and coincidentally this is my 100th blog! I hope readers have found it stimulating, certainly some of the pieces have resulted in lively and heated discussion. I do not expect and have never expected agreement, what I have looked for (and I believe I have found) is debate. I have striven for new angles and fresh thoughts on old subjects. I have tried to be critical of political hypocrisy. I have attempted honesty and tried to uncover contradictions. I hope I have had a measure of success in this.
To those who I have angered, perhaps self examination might be one answer. There has been no intent on my part at being destructive. All criticisms and suggestions are aimed at hopefully people becoming more constructive and thus taking our small territory, Gibraltar to a better place, not with my thoughts only but with the comments that these stimulate. Some have clearly understood this, regrettably others have not. I trust that some positive thought will lead them to make a New Year's resolution that will help them deal with the Llanito World philosphy next year. My message is that I will not be frightened or threatended into silence. I will stop writing this blog voluntarily and only if and when I feel like stopping.
I believe that I have covered a great variety of subjects. I think that the Andorra issue is more than well publicised now. That issue should not distract our politicians from the wider issues that affect Gibraltar. The liklihood is that next year will be an election year. This means that the political debate has to be widened and deal with issues that go well beyond the eternal Spanish problem. Let us not forget that it is not our problem. It is Spain's problem. We need to live side by side and with Spain; other than for that consideration, it is not for us to find a solution to Spain's quest to recover Gibraltar and achieve what it views as territorial re-integration.
Our politicians should concentrate a little on helping more those who are less fortunate in society. This government and past governments and those who work in this difficult vocation have done a lot for this group. I undertand that but I think that Gibraltar's small size should allow and enable the introduction of a more focussed and personalised social services system. Such an approach would deal with people's circumstances more specifically and in a more tailor made manner. I speak with no great knowledge, just anecdotal knowledge gained from social and professional interaction with people. I would welcome the views of those who are more knowledgeable than me on these matters. I think a society can be measured by how it deals with the less fortunate. Any improvement in this will reflect well on Gibraltar as a whole.
One issue that is of great concern to me is Gibraltar's energy policy. It seems settled that received wisdom is that Gibraltar should be self sufficient in its production of electricity. I have a more radical view, believeing that in a Europe where sharing and integration of electricity grids is becoming more common, Gibraltar could participate in that sharing. There should exist a contingency plan to cater for any emergency that may arise in the supply. What is clear is that how Gibraltar's needs for electricity are presently met need improvement and modernisation. A new power station was promised and has not been forthcoming yet. Hopefully it soon will be. The secondary but equally important consideration is the EU requirement that a significant proportion of this power should come from sustainable sources. This is a challenge that our politicians should not shirk from meeting. They need to ensure that our technocrats come up with a solution.
Well there you are some bits and pieces on Christmas Eve. Let the onslaught begin! Whatever your political beliefs, principles and ideals I wish you all a great and happy Christmas.