Sunday, 20 February 2011

Coalition of Independents for Reform, not a Party, What is it and Why?

One person already commented, on that forum of political intellect and knowledge, known as "Talk about Town", that if a group of 10 people joined together to stand for election it looked and felt like a party, so it must be a party. On such a superficial analysis that may be the case but a political party has more attributes than just being a group of disparate people getting together to stand for election. A party has ideologies that are shared (or should be shared) by its members. It has a rigid structure. It has rigid and established policies that, if elected, it gives (or should give) effect to. It has longevity or at least should have longevity.

The  intention is that those who might come together to make up the Coalition of Independents for Reform ("CIR") will adhere to some core principles but retain full freedom, outside those principles, to campaign for their own policies (like Richard Martinez fought for family rights at the last election).  They will have no obligation to become Ministers and will have a free vote in Parliament.  I would like to see individuals coming forward who would want to fight the corner of , for example,  mental health, the gay community, the anti-bullying at work campaign and other minorities in our society.

I can already hear the gasps of disbelief, how can people fighting for minorities believe that they can get elected?  Well, two reasons immediately come to mind, a belief that the majority have a conscience and will support worthy minority causes and the attraction that the core principles will have.  These core principles will be revealed shortly.  They encompass, the fight against bribery and corruption, dealing with the public debt,  electoral and parliamentary reform, accessibility to fundamental rights and ensuring that the thorny issues of the relationship with the UK, Spain and constitutional matters, for so many years used by politicians to distract attention and so retain power, do not interfere with the ability to achieve the other aims.

The CIR, therefore, will be an alliance of independents free of the constraints that come about and are imposed on politicians by the self-serving existing bipartisan party political system.  Gibraltar has been held for generations in the stranglehold that is enjoyed by elected politicians , which produces a choice of the worst of two evils.  Gibraltar cannot afford this any longer.   The rot that many of us complain of so frequently has to be stopped some day.  The CIR, if candidates come forward, will provide to voters an alternative choice of individuals to break a political system that forces voters constantly to choose between the lesser of evils.

The CIR will not campaign for a block vote, nor will it deter voters from voting for their preferred candidates from all the other main parties.  The CIR will campaign for voters to break the block vote so that each will truly use his/her 10 votes so that the result is that the 17 individuals, who they perceive to be the best, are forced to choose from amongst themselves who will provide the excellent government that Gibraltar deserves.  Idealistic?  Yes and unapologetically so.  Difficult? Yes, but nothing that is good is not difficult.  Is it likely to succeed?  The odds are stacked against this experiment succeeding but this is not a reason not to try.  Even if the experiment does not succeed fully, I believe that just undertaking the campaign at an election will force the main parties to think and make some change for the better.

It may be that in the end only one (me) will stand as an Independent or a few candidates will come forward but there is a huge advantage if 10 could be found.  The media rules, as they now stand, are biased against Independent candidates.  A party presenting 10 candidates gets 10 individual slots on GBC and in the press to preach its policies. Each party, based on this media bias, can sell their policies over and over again to the disadvantage of an individual Independent candidate.  In addition, the party leader gets to participate in the Leaders' Debate on GBC from which all others, not having 10 candidates at the election, are excluded by GBC.  Remember the controversy when the PDP were exclude at the last election.  This ignores the reality that the election is not structured around parties.  The system is a vote for individual candidates.  Parties also have greater numbers to assist in the electoral campaign, including making house to house calls.

An independent gets one shot at it and may possibly be invited to one or two discussion programmes at which he gets a chance to attract more votes.  All this is in addition to the inbuilt skew in the system caused by  years of people being told to block vote for the 10 candidates to ensure that the "evil" alternative party does not get elected.  If CIR can find 10 candidates these disadvantages can be overcome.  It will be able to take advantage of the system in place to convince voters of the wisdom of the core principles of the CIR and the individual campaigns of each candidate.  In this manner the chances of breaking the block vote will be enhanced.  Just getting 2 or 3 CIR candidates elected and preventing the main parties from ending up with a majority of 10 or 9 will provide results.  

Come along to the Conservatory at the rear of the Royal Calpe on Wednesday 23rd February 2011 at 7 p.m.  You will hear a little more.  I promise not to take up too much of your drinking time.  It is a reunion after all and drink will oil the wheels of enjoyment.  CIR believes in enjoyment being brought back into politics in Gibraltar.  Anyone interested in participating in the experiment in any way, not necessarily as a candidate, can contact me on giving me your contact details.  If you just want to provide ideas but wish to remain anonymous just say so. 


  1. Robert, big mountain to climb in such a small and polarised community as ours were everyone has an interest one way or another. I really do admire your convictions and irrespective of the outcome, you have already made a real difference to our politics and democracy, even if you manage to get 3 or 4 independent candidates the forthcoming elections will be different, for the better.... If you managed to get 10 independents,the traditional parties will be extremely concerned, as all matters raised in your blog over the last few months have intellectually exposed our many weaknesses in our democracy. As a democrat I sincerely hope you succeed, good luck.

  2. Anonymous at 11:29

    Glad you believe, as I do, that my blog has already made a difference. Standing for election will continue the process of change, which is what motivates me. I hope it will motivate others to come forward. Just standing will break the ethos of fear that exists in Gibraltar. It will also push forward the agenda for change.

    I promise any person that stands for election with CIR that I will use all my skills in the law, for free, to defend them from any consequences that they may suffer from as a result. I guarantee that no government has the C. O. Jones to face up to a legal challenge on grounds of that type. I am sure that there are many other lawyers in Gibraltar who will offer their help in such litigation.

  3. Robert, it would just be great to see other leading businessmen and indeed leading lawyers standing as independents together. But, doubt it they prefer to talk and claim they will stand but never have the guts to do so, or even worse imply they are a threat to ensure better treatment from parties when these get into power. That is today's reality.... Hypocrisy at it's highest !! Suerte

  4. Question : can civil servants, teachers, GHA employees ect.... Stand for election as independents without having to resign from their job ?

  5. Anonymous at 12:39

    Many can, it depends on seniority, post and (for some) permission. If I remember correctly Stephen Linares was a teacher. I will research the point and give a more specific answer.

  6. Good afternoon Robert

    I think that you have done an outstanding job these last few months in trying to pick Democracy in Gibraltar up by its lapels, dusting it off and setting it right. Bravo.

    You are now going to embark on the next phase of the LW project which is the CIR. I think that it is imperative that you garner 9 like minded colleagues to stand with you on the central critical issue of democratic reform and accountability. Support for secondary minority interests is of course laudable but I don't think that this should distract attention from what the main drive of a group of independents should be.

    As you say, it is important for the CIR to field a full slate of 10 candidates to have equal media exposure in the run up to the election. It is important to expose the wider public, of which there are many still unaware, of the pressing need for a proper overhaul of how Gib conducts its affairs.

    I will be unable to attend next Wednesday's reunion but wish you the very best in your endeavours. Needless to say, you will have my vote.

  7. An inspirational piece RV

    I happened to vote for Richard Martinez at the last elections.

    I also agree with your statements in regards to minorities. They should be adequately represented and I do not believe they have been so in the past. A lot more could have been done in regards to the Anti- Bullying and Gay rights campaigns, in my humble opinion of course. The Government has promised to do so but has failed to deliver in both these cases. Even Mr. Zammit’s (I support your cause Brian) anti-smoking campaign has been tackled half heartedly by our current Government. Even Spain is now imposing sterner bans on smoking than Gibraltar, as ludicrous as that sounds it is a fact. How can this be?

    There is a lot of room for improvement and a lot of areas that need addressing.

    It is also clear that RV needs help he cannot possibly take on such a mammoth task by himself. I hope other strong willed, free thinking individuals will take the plunge for the good of our community as a whole.

    Furthermore even if the independents do not get into Parliament they will force the Government in power to take heed of their arguments. Merely making a stand will draw attention to their points of choice (as Richard did).

    It is time to BELIEVE in ourselves because if not no one else will.

    To which I will add....

    "Impossible is just a BIG word thrown around by SMALL MEN who find it EASIER to live in the world they've been given than to explore the power they have to CHANGE IT. Impossible is not a fact. It's an opinion. Impossible is not a declaration. It's a dare. Impossible is potential. Impossible is temporary. IMPOSSIBLE IS NOTHING!"


  8. I think K should go in as an independent there are synergies here.

  9. Robert, you need 17 to wipe out the government and opposition in one go. both as bad as each other with a few exceptions, they could join CIR

  10. RV,
    You will probably needs funds to launch an effective campaign, for adverts etc. How about opening a bank account so that people can deposit money to help your cause.
    I think you should also place an advert advertising this blog to expose the hard work you have been doing recently.

  11. RV, You don't need to post this is you feel it would harm CIR in any way.
    But... If you had the choice to form a coalition with GSD or GSLP which party would you be inclined to pick and why?

  12. Danger Mouse makes a great point. Funds!!! Unless Red Rob is our own version of Ross Pero y ta forao.

    Another candidate could be Nick Cruz, he doesn't believe that the PDP can win and seems to agree with Robert on many issues. Me dicen que el Azopardi se casa con Picardo si Bossano se va.

  13. Anonymous at 13:29

    Most of the people you name can do a better job than most of the Ministers who seem to have been castrated from offering opinions or being effective in their ministries. sorry there is a female Minister, perhaps she can be the man amongst them all ... NO! Wishful thinking :)

    Anonymous at 14:54

    !7 impossible because each voter has 10 votes so fielding more candidates means they are competing against each other but I know what you mean.

    Anonymous at 15:20 and 15:56

    Funds is an issue but there are ways and means ... there are plans.


    This question is premature but there are other possibilities that do not include agreeing a coalition with either the GSD or the GSLP. Agreeing a coalition defeats the purpose of the experiment so would not be a preferred course for me. Permitting a minority government to govern is my preferred option. There is one other option, which I do not wish to discuss until after the election and depending on the actual results.

  14. Robert,

    If you were on government what would your stance be on the civil service?

    Would you reduce staff?

    Would you make government departments work for a profit?(were possible)

    In general terms what are your views on the civil service and how do you think you could maximise efficency in service and value for money?



  15. D:

    Referring to the "Civil Service" as one is an error. There are many facets to the "Civil Service". Reducing numbers is not (as I understand it) within the realms of affordable possibility. What we have to strive for is to ensure that Gibraltar benefits as much as possible from its public service.

    There is a need for two things (a) specialisation and (b) training to help achieve this aim. At the same time those in the service have to be empowered to fully undertake their functions, with empowerment brings making them responsible.

    If civil servants are denuded of power by ministers the result is diminishing pride leading to disinterest and lethargy in the job. Empowerment also helps to overcome the lack of confidence that comes from over interference in decisions made and constant criticisms leads to inaction by public servants. Undermining confidence is more destructive and has a more negative effect than empowering and putting up with some errors. Too much intervention leads to paralysis , which in turn results in greater detriment to the economy.

    There is also a need to resource areas for which the Civil Service is responsible that are more profitable to the overall economy. Service standards are important in an increasingly globalised world, especially in all matters touching upon the port, gaming and finance.

    Over time the results will be seen. Those areas that are over resourced will become obvious. Natural wastage and an appropriate recruitment policy will deal with this issue. Nothing is gained by reductions with resultant destructive unemployment. There is more to be gained by more efficient deployment of resources. Assuming throughout that the economy can sustain the situation.

  16. Shame on the person who wrote at 13.29 calling me a "pit bull." I will have you know that am a mild mannered person who prefers cats to dogs ;) Anyway he / she and other contributors appear to view the next general elaction and Robert Vasquez' initiative for a Coalition of Independents for reform as a joke and the object of fun. Having been in the midst of the affairs of our beloved City of Gibraltar every single day since I qualified as a lawyer in 1982 and knowing more than most of the real workings of the place I can assure those who see Robert as a possible object of fun that the joke is really not on him but on you. That is why I stood for election in 2007; because eventually the cynicism of the powers that be (government and opposition and others) eventually got to me in the same way as they have now got to Robert! God luck Robert.

  17. Robert,

    i agree,but still those members of the civil service that do not perform and are constantly in denial of their duties should be put to task!Please take into account that like in the private sector there are individuals that don't even qualify for training and they also cost money to the tax payer.

    Surely you are diplomatic in your comment but there are definite arrears were some civil servants simply don't have a cure and they should be sacked!

    There are many good ones and those are the ones that should provide all of us tax payers with their skills.

    The reality is also that as you mention sometimes ministers think that they know better than the professionals employed to do the job.Other times there are very well paid CEO s that really all they do is act as mail but nothing else.

    Bye for now


  18. Charles

    Thank you for your stirling defence and for your expression of good luck! I had hopes that you would be joining me on this experiment and venture.

    The mirth and sarcasm of Anonymous at 13:29 had not escaped me. I just chose to ignore it! If it is an example of how the GSd intends t deal with me, it is in for a surprise. I am not known as a toothless individual. I can give as much or more than I can take. The important consideration is to choose one's moment, hit the target and hit it hard.

    Obviously this commentator knows me and my ability, attempts to ridicule me out of fear and so does it under the cowardly cloak of anonymity.

  19. D

    Each such issue has to be dealt with carefully and "managed". Sacking is not in my nature or necessarily the right option. Best to ensure proper lines of communication and responsibility and use them efficiently.

    Promotion comes with responsibility. It is that lesson that first needs to be learnt. Promotion means more money but that also carries the weight of responsibility. The RGP seem to understand this now. It is undergoing a massive change for the better. There is a need to start achieving the same in many other areas of the public service.

  20. RV I concur with your last posting.

    Sacking should always be seen as a LAST resort.

    These are REAL people with REAL families to support.


  21. I am really surprised that Charles Gomez will not be standing for election with the group of independents.... What a pity, Charles come on your contribution is really important...venga hombre...adelante

  22. I would also like to see Charles Gomez standing for election as an independent. Come on man.

  23. Verdad este K should really stand with Robert! He has his finger on the pulse.



  25. It was all going so well Robert until your apparent lack of courage with regard to the Civil Service.

    Stand up to the issue, the Gravy Train must end, they know it, we know it, there has to be a massive reform here to turn 'Gib Gov PLC' into an efficient machine.

    By the way, if you can break the partisan political system that we have, you will do Gibraltar a massive favour.


  27. Anonymous at 21:28

    Go on do it, destroy hundreds of lives in one foul swoop and remain anonymous as you go about it :)

  28. isn't that gravy train in the very private and very exclusive private sector?

  29. It would be suicide to try and tackle the public sector issue here in one foul [sic] swoop as you put it.

    Would anyone care to make an estimate of how much of the Civil Service is currently WASTE.

  30. Isn't this Govt doing a good job re civil servants?

    Everything you have said needs doing is actually being done and we all know that the process to reform this service is a long and windy one.

    I am more concerned as to how exactly this untested experiment which given it's experimental format may well compromise Govts functionality, is going to work?

    At best you have a few skywalkers that blow out a few GSLP wasters. this works as you are then able to effect accountable opposition not seen for decades.

    Worse still you get 4 even 5 skywalkers with Red Rob at the helm and you have the ingredients to influence change, essentially you are the king maker. But you are all fighting for totally different things and as king makers have to conjure up a Govt from peole that you have been criticising throughout and who are unlikely to join you anyway.

    The winner option is that you get 9 skywalkers through with Red Rob, but still all with different agendas and as admitted by you Robert on newswatch, possibly no intention of forming a Govt but rather playing King Maker.

    All of the above bar the first are potential disasters waiting to happen in the name of experimenting.And all have in built liabilities that weaken our society and economy on so many levels.

    Just some thoughts.

  31. Anonymous at 22:35

    I have no intention of changing areas that are being adequately dealt with but I do not agree necessarily because the right policy is being followed that it is being implemented correctly or efficiently. Standing for election does not involve reinventing the wheel.. If something is working do not touch it but improve on it. I am touching issues that are not receiving the required attention.

    My experiment is only an experiment in Gibraltar. It is something that is not unusual in other jurisdictions. Government's functions cannot be compromised by democracy.

    The result all depends on the electorate. The electorate is in charge, which is something that seems to upset you.

    Independents members of CIR will not be fighting for totally different things. We will fight for core principles. Working together happens in other places for example the UK right now. It does not lead to weak government. it leads to improved government.

    They do not all have different agendas. They have core principles and then specific issues of their own. I am not playing kingmaker. there are many formulae, read my piece and later comments. I explain some.

    My intervention in the election will not weaken our society and economy one iota. You begin the GSD scare campaign already, running scared? Well done, bring it on.

  32. Robert your doing a good job its about time Gibraltar needs someone interlectual like you to make a change in our injust political society

  33. altered
    2011 22:35
    Experimenting is the only way to find out if it’s possible to achieve change, change means transform, we have no alternative and cannot allow to be treated any more like halfwit idiots by our dictatorial so called British democratic system, in Gibraltar.

    If voters only achieve having one independent individual like Robert Vasquez it will be sufficient to keep the government if not totally in part in line as a democratic country with the human rights we all deserve.

    Voters should be concerned and want to know where we honestly stand with regards to our increasing debt, Spanish talks, and real reason why the UK are moving OUT of Gibraltar this worries many people and ask have Gibraltarians got a future in Gibraltar.

    Think positive demand to know the facts think of your children’s and their children’s future.



  34. Anon 22:35

    Not necessarily.

    I think we can all agree that CHANGE is required.

    The independents would strive for this much needed change. Admittedly they would each do so in their OWN unique manner tackling different issues in the process, yet in essence having the SAME exact goal in mind. This being to improve OUR Gibraltar in ways that our current and past Governments have failed to do so.

    I sincerely believe that under RV’s proposed Collation their “crusades” would have structure and purpose (if these attributes were previously missing that is).

    Let me put it this way, if the CM can organise Reyes and Co. I am sure RV could do much better with the likes of Gomez, Zammit, etc. It is a shame Mr. Gomez does not seem interested :(

    Don’t you people realise? That YOU can make a difference!

    Furthermore in my humble opinion I do not find Robert’s proposals to be farfetched not at all, especially when one takes into account the possible line ups of the GSD, PDP and GSLP .

    Please note I am not implying that these people are not capable. Some are and some surely are not. What I AM implying is that the independents as an 11 “team” line up have far more potential.

    Just imagine an ENTIRE LINE UP of capable individuals! 11 candidates who firmly BELIEVE in what they are advocating, passionately attempting to drive their points “home” and honestly wanting to make a difference. No puppets, no Yes men, Y ninguna paga muerta.

    Now that would REALLY be something wouldn’t it???


  35. L.E.F.

    What course of action or strategy to take will be determined by who and how many independents are willing to take the plunge.

    This is crucial to know, before we can start to concentrate our efforts on what is realistically possible to achieve ,to be able to influence the result.

    At present we will wait and see but the more I think about it the more I believe that having just 1 solid independent increases our chances of achieving a positive result which can bring some change.

    I personally do not favour quantity over quality , so I do not think that to ask for 10 independents to stand is a good idea if the quality is not there.

    I hope that I am wrong and that 10 people with your same values and calibre would present themselves and solve the whole problem, but I find that difficult to believe.

    I fully appreciate the lack of TV exposure for 1 single independent and agree that it is a disadvantage to fight an election but I do not think that TV exposure should be measured with the same importance as past elections.

    We have a valuable media tool through this blog which we will have to improve to reach the masses.

    We just have to focus . We have to look at the figures and be realistic of the number of votes needed for change.

    8000 votes is Chief Minister territory.
    7000 votes is Government territory
    5000 votes is opposition territory
    1000 votes is independent territory.

    This is the mountain in front of us.

    Can we climb it and conquer it?

    Yes .I believe we can achieve more than we actually realise.

    The problem is to decide which path will assure a greater chance of success .

    We first have to decide to what level of the mountain we want to reach and then which is the best way to climb it.

    We have a great opportunity in our hands , for which I have to thank you , we just have to make the best use of it .

    As Kaelan says impossible is nothing.

  36. Oh don't be so defensive Robert, I was only posting some thoughts. If you are going to have any success in this experiment you really need to be able to accept criticism and not dismiss or react with spin. In any case I don't think it's the GSD thats sacred on this one.

  37. Anonymous at 07:37

    Not defensive just replying to your criticism substantively. Well think again on GSD. I do not thimk your assessment is accurate. It is the incumbent government that suffers attrition.

  38. Maybe so on the incumbent Govt Robert, but I fear that under the circumstances it will be a weak opposition who will suffer from Red Robs crusade. Time will tell.

  39. Excuse my ignorance, I am a student abroad, but has an election date been set?
    Re today's Panorama poll, I think CIR needs to start mobilising fast, to get voters acquainted with their policies.

  40. Anon 11:17

    Yes yes lololol

    A weak opposition, which just so happens to be 8% ahead on the Panaroma Poll, the same exact Poll that has predicted (rather accurately) election results in the past.

    Comete esa con papa anda.

    I think the people of Gibraltar are fed up of being treated like second class citizens in their OWN land, by a Government who has lost touch with its people.

    Hoy soy Ministro y maniana no soy NADIE.

    It seems like the GSD elite will be "dropping" down to planet earth sooner than expected.

    “EUSTON EUSTON we have a PROBLEM!! “Preparing to CRASH LAND.....” :) hahah


  41. I think that the GSD is awful and the GSLP even worse. I detect in several of the messages sent to LW the hand of the GSLP egging on the independents who have no chance of being elected in order that they will take votes away from the GSD so that the GSLP can get their candidates into government (or may be vice versa).


  42. I will vote for any independent candidate who seeks to defend the rights of children to receive an education free from religious indoctrination.

    Isn't a society judged by the way it treats its minorities?

    Also forget the party-motivated mind games and just vote for the best individuals.

  43. K is that the same pollster that had the GSLP to win in the last election?
    I'm interested to learn why you think that the independents will gain votes from the GSD and not the GSLP? If LW is anything to go by and you are a great example, it would seem that GSLP fans like you are swinging to CIR. This essentially dilutes the GSLP vote to the point that your poll which you seem to be so chuffed with is as eronious as the 2007 GBC poll. But hey you might be right, the GSD may well be calling Euston, or is it Houston.

  44. I have never heard that a society is judged by the way it treats its minorities. Who is supposed to do the judging? Most succesful societies are those who treat everyone equally. In Gibraltar everyone is free to follow the religion that he / she wants or to abjure religion altogether. What religious indoctrination are you alluding to? In the old communist empire religion was illegal - did that improve the plight of the people or did it do the opposite? Stalin is long dead and the Gulag a grim memory of tyrrany and barbarism. My own concern is that children are indoctrinated in the sub-cultures of violence and dumbing down that come into our living rooms via the media of TV and computers. Is anon at 15.42 not concerned by that? If anon's notion is that children should not be taught their religions in state schools then I would strongly advocate the creation of more faith schools for those Christians, Jews, Muslims and Hindus who do not care for secularism. Secularists should no more try to impose their ideas on othere than people of faith. The example of the UK is that large numbers of parents prefer their children to be educated in faith schools.

  45. L.E.F

    I agree with you that the issues that you raise merit very careful thought and a judgement nearer the time of the elections. It may well be better to present one or two or three strong candidates, as you suggest.

    The power of the internet does certainly reduce and counterbalance the effect of GBC and the established print media. This is one reason that I am trying to atrtract as many readers as possible to this blog and to friends its Facebook page.

    What it is all about right now is getting as much coverage and publicity as possible.

  46. Anon 16:32

    Its is HOUSTON but EUSTON sounds more LLANI!

    There is indeed method behind the madness you see!! lololol ;)

    I have never been a GSLP supporter as such! I tend to vote for my candidate of choice rather than my party of choice. Blindly following party lines does not appeal to me, not one bit.

    What I am is FED up with the way our current Government is running things and have opted to make a STAND.

    Furthermore please note I have NEVER EVER stated that the CRI would dilute the GSD votes.

    When have I done so?? Please feel free to enlighten me. I believe you have got my comments mixed up with someone else's.

    If you are going to attempt to belittle my postings at least get your facts right will ya?

    PS - Good points Charles. You should stand for election, over 1000 votes at the last elections, imagine this time......


  47. Anon 16:32

    The Panaroma pollster last time predicted it was to close to call and it was indeed CORRECT (once again).

    The GSD barely managed to SQUEEK through......

    And if the student votes (from the UK) would have been counted (they did not "arrive on time" apparently). It would have been a VERY different story altogether.

    Guess what though? All these students are now in Gib and eagerly awaiting election time. :)

    The YOUTH vote will be the decider. Ya veras!

    Goodluck to the GSD! They are going to NEED IT!!! lololol


  48. I agree with L.E.F. quality over quantity every time. I would go further. I would say that your experiment has failed before it has got off the ground and this blog is living proof. Why? Because whilst many people agree either with what you write, or the ideas that you express, or simply having a place to mouth off about both opposition and government (thereby reflecting and agreeing with the frustration that many people feel and which was core to the beginnings of this blog) very few are willing to put their name to they are NOT willing to stand up and be counted.
    But if somebody else (ie you) is willing to stand up and be counted, then they will support you.

    Inviting candidates also seems di

  49. K one has to assume that your joy at the fact that the GSLP are leading in the polls would suggest your approval and support for them, equally it would suggest your distaste for anything GSD, although I think you make those thoughts clear enough. On the principle that the above us correct one needs to be no genius that you and many like you are swinging from what would have been almost dead cert GSLP to CIR.

    It's my opinion, a humble one at that.

  50. The rights of secularists should be respected in the same way as the rights of people of any faith. The concept of secularism should not make anyone feel threatened. Access to religious education is just as important as the right to choose to be free from such religious instruction We agree with each other Mr Gomez.

    And of course, I am concerned about the violence and sugar-coated superficiality on TV. Thankfully I can just switch off the TV and choose not to watch or expose my still young children to such rubbish.

    Schools should provide religious education (for all religions not just one) for those who want it but at the same time allow those who don't want it for their children to be free from such religious education without prejudicing their child in the process. Such would be equal treatment of all children. In this case I cannot just place my child in a secular school as there isn't one, all schools are run as Catholic schools (apart from Jewish school obviously). Maybe if there were one truly secular school in Gibraltar parents like myself would be catered for and our childrens' rights respected.

    I prefer the notion of having all children in the same schools and having religious representatives coming to the schools and giving RE lessons there for those who want it and allowing those who don't to leave the school. Arrangements could be made for RE classes to take place at the end of the school day. This would guarantee that children of all faiths would socialise and learn together thereby promoting greater social cohesion for future generations. It would also please all people of all religions in Gib. If we continue as we are we'll simply get more of the same. I would vote for someone who respects the values and rights of all (even a minority group) and is willing to make decisions to promote the welfare of ALL children.

    When I said that a society is judged by the way it treats its minorities I meant indeed just that. Those that form part of a minority group have the same rights as those of the majority. These are the people/groups that most often get ignored as their voice is not as loud. Let's not CHOOSE to ignore them.

  51. L.E.F.

    Just thinking. If GBC does not give the independent enough air time why not have debates live on Llanito World .

    After all I believe the population like good debates and a vast majority of the population have access to a pc.

    Why not have a leaders debate on LW.

    Why not interview other candidates on L.W.

    I personally am quite ignorant in technology but I believe it is possible.

    Some technological fan of LW might advise on the physical possibilities of such a project.

    Just a thought.

  52. Anon 19:22

    And your point is?



  53. I have seen many bad party political broadcasts in my time, but I think tonight's GSD offering must surely take the biscuit!

    I loved how Mrs Ellul-Hammond walks into the Primary Care Centre, and instead of the cameraman following her in, they switched to original footage of when it was opened 11 years ago, lol, perhaps its not quite as nice now as it was then? Perhaps there wasn't an appointment to be had!

    And the 'green' area of John Mac Square. Where's the green bit? Its a paved square with 6 trees, each surrounded by a metre squared of patchy grass! That cannot be termed as a green area, surely!

    The refurbished area of Chatham Counterguard was also a joke. How long ago where those shops supposedly finished? Why is it that they haven't been allocated yet? and if they have, why do they remain empty? I also note, the only one with a sign above the door, has a brick-wall barrier at the entrance to prevent rain-water flooding. Not very well made are they! Its a pity Mrs Ellul-Hammond didn't film later on in the day, especially Friday pay-day, then she would have captured the essence of the tobacco trade as it continues today. It would have been more realistic to see the many badly parked spanish cars and motorbikes and the hordes of spaniards making their purchases before heading off across the frontier.

    The market is also a joke! Why didn't they show the stalls/stores purchased by the Government with tax-payers money at a cost of approximately half a million pounds? We would have seen where our money really does go!

    I wonder who filmed this for them? Is it me? or is the background music very similar to type used by 'GBC' in their fillers?

    Oh well, if that's all they have to say for themselves, I suppose they have to steer clear of more contentious issues like the spiralling costs of the airport and tunnel, Andorra, the failed tripartite talks, the state of the new houses at Cumberland, the theatre royal, etc, etc.

    Perhaps it is better for them to stick to a sunny main street after all!

  54. Since secularists like 20.08 are more vocal than most religious minorities like Cristians need protection. If Anon wants to instil secularism in his children he should get a few like minded people to set up such a school. Why should I have to pay for that? Religious diversity has worked well in Gib why should this person want to tamper with it. stand for election on that ticket and see how far you get.

  55. Presently watching Panorama on the Irish Crash... lots of bells too close to home ringing very true here. scary stuff...

  56. to anon 20:08

    I agree with you entirely. Children are being targeted by the indoctrination of faith at school, for example, saying prayers in the morning.

    Religion is not something that should be forced, it should remain as something of choice. Gibraltar is indeed very much behind in this sense. Religious indoctrination of all faiths still exists.

    Children should be given a fair choice. Obviously because of maturity factors this would have to be at a later stage, therefore, R.E. should be left out of school untill perhaps they have to choose their options in year 9 (13-14 years old).

    I beleive the teaching of RE in the manner it is taught now is unfair. It is the same as indirectly forcing someone to belong to one political party or other.

    This aside, I would like to state that I have absolutely nothing against any religion or faith. I simply believe our children should not be forced into these things.

    Also, at D, on the matter of the civil service.

    There are some members of the service who work relentlessly. It would be unfair to generalise. On the other hand, there are many who are simply riding along.

    However, the most important matter I believe is to look at the future, and at the moment it is bleak. This being because of the recruitment procedures.

    I shall upload another post shortly.


  57. University Graduates are put off by joining the civil service because of the fact that they have to start at the lowest administrative position.

    In the UK graduates MAY APPLY through the "fast track" option. This ensures that more graduates apply and therefore allow the service to make better recruitments. At the same time it doesn't prejeduice against non-graduates applying to the AO positions (as normal).

    This mechanism opens a door to graduates who would otherwise go to the private sector.


  58. Robert, I totally agree with most of what you say and truly wish you and your mates the best in our next election. I like many many people have realised the importance of having independents, my concern is that we end up with Picardo as our CM.


  59. RV could you please explain how you purport to "choose" or as you have stated consider the "number of candidates" (as regards the quality/quantity debate earlier in the blog. Surely if they are truly independants they cannot be subject to any filtering.

    Similarly, if one of these individuals chooses not to adhere to your "core principles" there is nothing that you or the CIR can do save of course that you do envisgae operating as a quasi-political party. Then you can bring out the paty whip...

  60. I think the only way you might stand a chance is to contact personally individuals in our community that stand out, in a good way to see if they would be willing to join you. Its all well and good inviting people to listen to your cause/offer at a bar in Main Street, but it just doesn’t look as serious as I think it should be. Another point I would like to make is, who would lead the CIR? As soon as you have a leader you no longer have a coalition you have another party camouflaged as a group of individuals.
    Personally, unless you get some good heavyweights from our community to join you in your quest, it will be yet another none starter as everyone that doesn’t want the GSD in power will vote for the GSLP and visa versa

  61. Anonymous at 00:51

    I have faith in the reasonableness of human beings. First let us see who volunteers. Then I believe that it is a matter for consensus/agreement and not coercion.

    If a CIR candidate rebels you are right, there is little that the CIR could do. It would be for the electorate to castigate or endorse that candidate, that is life! This can happen with or without a party whip. I believe there is enough dissent within the existing parties for it to have happened. I believe it does not happen because of the lucrative salaries paid, nothing to do with party whips.

    Anonymous at 01:09

    The reunion at the Royal Calpe started at the request of readers of this blog to "meet up". It is not intended as an invitation to listen to any speeches. It is a reunion to chat. Those who are interested in CIR will undoubtedly make it known to me. Those who want a preview of the Core Principles can get it from me. Seriousness or joviality are in the eyes of the beholder. They are not dependent on venue but on the reaction of people. The first meetings of the IWBP, I am told, happened in pubs!

    The idea is that the CIR would not have a Leader but will have a Spokesman chosen by agreement. Is there a need for a Leader? Consensus not coercion is the way for Independents. This needs maturity. If the coalition breaks up or has defectors so what? I do not believe in straightjacket politics.

    CIR being a starter or non-starter depends on people but if there is no beginning there is nothing. Let us not destroy that which has not started before it starts. Give it a chance, some positive vibes might help. Less negativism please. I have admitted it will be difficult and the party system is ingrained. This is no reason why not to try. if it does not happen let it not be for want of trying.

    I will let you into a secret, I never thought this blog would work. I started it to get issues off my chest. In 6 months I had over 750 readers, now, 7 months on from then, I have over 2000 readers. The Chronic prints 2000 copies a day. Not bad for one person sitting at home writing two articles a week. So look CIR may work or it may flop but between this Blog and trying to get CIR to work, I guarantee you one thing, politics in Gibraltar will change for the better. If that is achieved we should all be happy.

  62. The Panorama Poll:
    I cannot believe that a community can be so blinded as to decide to oust a successful Govt on the principle that they have been in Govt for too long and based on the misconceptions that the opposition is falsely presenting to us. What is even worse is that we seem to be prepared to elect a party into Govt that has a 72 year old leader at the helm with a track record that would make leaders of failed states look like good will ambassadors.

  63. Mr Vasquez, do you think that a coalition of unknown candidates would obtain the votes required or do you think like myself and many others that I have spoken to about this subject, that you need to attract people of the likes of Marilou Guerro, Bryan Zammit and Janet Hewitt to name a few. I really do think it’s crucial that the coalition have well known outspoken people (people who can hold their own corner in a debate) like the three I mentioned, who are what is known in politics as vote catchers, and not just an assembly of people who are unknown and not in the public limelight. I don’t even think political parties can get away with standing a team of 8 or 10 unknowns anymore. Politics has reached a new level now in Gibraltar and if you want to create an impact no matter what team/party/group you are from, you will need to field a team of people that are well known, well spoken, respected members of our community….aka, ‘vote catchers’.

  64. To Anon 23:41
    Again typical GSD sychophant
    "my concern is that we end up with Picardo as our CM."
    Well Mr Picardo is far, far more honest and down to earth than the current "Emperor" That is ruling Gibraltar. I'm conviced that Mr Picardo will not make the mistake of the Teriminal, Cumberland Terraces windows and doors, Theatre Royal and more importantly the massive debt that we will end up with. In fcat I 'm furtehr convinced that Mr Picardo is the most capable person to sort out the mees that the next Government is going to inherit.
    I wonder what it was that Robert has edited from this anon?? Insults I presume which is the tactic of the GSD.

  65. What is the dress code for Thursday's "reunion"? Should university or regimantal ties be worn? Are ladies allowed? Will separate areas be designated to ladies?

  66. Anonymous at 11:08

    Well doesn't that say a lot about the GSD? It is proof of its failing policies. They have a few months to put it right. Perhaps it should pay more attention to Llanito World? It is not the community that is bling it is the GSD! It is this precise attitude that is achieving these rsults for the GSLP. The GSD should open its eyes. If the best that it can offer is last night's Party Political Broadcast it will soon get a rude awakening. What are all the Ministers doing? Leaving it to the CM?

    Anonymous at 11:14

    It is precisely the type of person that you refer to that I would like to attract. First give me a chance, I am one man working alone. Second they have to want to. They know how to contact me so it is alos open to them to make an approach.

    Anonymous at 11:21

    I assure you that what was redacted was not flattering!

    Anonymous at 11:25

    CIR does not stand on ceremony, I leave that to the GSD :) Come to the reunion as you feel best suits you. Why are you casting aspersions about women? I see noreason for this and no reason for suggesting a class bias by reference to the type of dress that you use as exmpales. Am I missing something here?

  67. "It is this precise attitude that is achieving these rsults for the GSLP." what results are these Robert, the one where they have the same old leader with mootings of a change in leadership to el niño who has about as much on his plate at the mo to keep him busy for the next decade.

    but hey wait, aside from your comical references we have another comedian who says "Well Mr Picardo is far, far more honest and down to earth than the current "Emperor" That is ruling Gibraltar. I'm conviced that Mr Picardo will not make the mistake of the Teriminal, Cumberland Terraces windows and doors," this is brilliant is there another picardo in politics? And what mess are we talking about here, us there really a suggestion that changing doors and windows warrants ousting a Govt that has transformed Gib. But wait there's more and it gets better, " Mr Picardo is the most capable person to sort out the mees that the next Government is going to inherit." you mean after he sorts out his own mess or during or before?

    Clearly some choose to have blinders on, the fact remains that by comparison to most countries world wide we are in a different level socially, economically and on almost every level and you may choose to ignore this and substitute with Bossano or Picardo who in 15 years have been capable only of sitting on the fence with fundamental issues and telling us that they do not believe we can aspire to growth I'm the port industry, that gaming is a risk, that our air terminal is pie in the sky, that our economy is a myth and ready to tumble.

    And then we have CIR, it's not a party and has no leader, it wants checks and balances and reforms and accountability and it requires independents to rally on totally separate issues and then when it wins will act as king maker whilst red rob rides in on his White horse.

    Vamo llama a Spielberg que Aqui se forra..;)

  68. Anon 11:08

    The public is far from blinded.

    On the contrary the public has its eyes WIDE open and sees right through the “illusion” that the GSD propaganda machine has been attempting to create.

    The perfect Gibraltar the GSD Government portrays does not exist and the public is starting to realise this.

    Furthermore my assessments regarding tobacco smuggling have been given credence as of late. The trade is indeed stronger and more rampant than ever.

    The GHA saga, the lack of appropriate work for qualified and specialized locals, amongst other things.

    People are stopping me in the street and telling me.....“TIENES RAZON”, "DICES VERDADES". People I didn't even know lived in Gib! lolol

    Awareness is the KEY and Robert via this blog has certainly raised awareness.

    Not only that but he has enabled a media for people like myself to publicly vent.

    Bravo Robert!

    Anon 11:14

    I totally agree! People win Elections and not policies!


  69. GHA saga K? Surely you are not talking about the fact that this Govt actually doubles up on many jobs to allow young locals to mirror jobs filled by ex-pats until properly trained and then take over once ex-pat term is over.
    You make some very rash arguments K and the illusion youvtalk about is marketed by the party you say you do not support.
    Facts are facts and Gibraltar finds itself in a better position today than ever in it's political, economic or social history.

  70. Anon 15:95


    Give me facts and substance.

    We both know you have no evidence to support such bold statments.

    Come on post an article or give me some proof. ANY proof will do. Go on.......

    PLEASE prove me wrong. I WANT to be wrong.

    Don't you get it? I am not party orientated! No soy del GSLP or del PDP or del GSD (LOL)!

    I just want what is BEST for OUR PEOPLE.


  71. Anonymous at 14:41

    The atittude that I refer to is the self belief that everything is all right, everyone else is wrong and bad obnly the GSd has it right and anyone wgho does not see that is blind!

    It is the GSd whjo do not see that it has to change its atittude if it intends to get elected at the next election. Polls tell stories the GSd can see and listen or can carry on, on its merry way to probbale election defeat. Alterntively it can take a long hard view at itself, make some changes and win, which as you say may well be for the better of Gibraltar.

    As for the CIr ... let us see ... it will certainly wake people up, I assureyou, just as this blog is doing whether you want to see that or not.

  72. No you are not missing anything. As you rightly said above Robert "It is not the community that is bling it is the GSD!"
    One thing is clear and through this blog the public (or at least those who participate on this blog 2000 or so!!)are realising that the GSD tactic which has been shown all along (from the beginning when you started writing articles in this blog) that the GSD Sychophants lack substance, argument, and real political honesty.
    They are being flashed out for what they really are????!!!!

  73. Anon 14:41
    Again typical!! sige, picha sige, all you do is show the GSD up. Que bien, entre tu y el broadcast de a noche its no wonder that the polls dice que va a ganar el GSLP with el Ninio y to. You are the sort of individual who I personally "like" since you clearly show your colours!!!!!!Sige, sige y no pare!!

  74. Anon 1505

    " Surely you are not talking about the fact that this Govt actually doubles up on many jobs to allow young locals to mirror jobs filled by ex-pats until properly trained and then take over once ex-pat term is over.

    Which jobs are these?? PLease, let me know about them. I hadn't realised! And here I am a few years on after having completed my degree serving alcohol behind the bar! And my mates, same with degrees and a few years after graduating, are delivering pizzas, cleaning offices and the likes! I thought these jobs were being filled by friends of Peter caruana and / or Retired Professionals who already have very well paid pensions and who seem unwilling to retire and let the next generation progress!

    On another note, the GSD broadcast last night was pathetic and for anyone with an ounce of brain matter insulting! Do they really think we are going to buy that image of perfect Gibraltar that Isobel tried to piant with her walkabout town! Images shown, probably produced by those behind the GBC fillers, failed to show the real picture - the ongoing large scale tobacco activity and illegal parking in the area of Ocean heights, the as yet unopened vaults in the area despite one having had the Tapas sign for ages; the use of 10 year old footage of the Health Centre despite the crew actually walking into the building for the filming of the broadcast video....and then, the whole essence of the GSD message - the only thing that matters is that gibraltar looks nice. All they did was talk about how lovely and nice everything looked, but failed to address the real issues - employment, housing, etc. It seems that the GSD think that having nice looking bus shelters and nice coloured paint on our walls are the things which concern us! How Effing PATRONISING! They really think we are dumb! Give me a cheap ugly tacky bus shelter anyday, and instead focus on trying to get me, a young qualified (with extensive experience) GIBRALTARIAN a PROPER job and AFFORDABLE HOUSING - single people are also entitled to housing -we no longer live in 1940s Gibraltar!

    GSD Dimite YA! Political reform YA pleasssssseee!

  75. Anonymous said...
    Robert thank you for your prompt reply. I find myself not disagreeing with you totally. However I do not believe that the GSD leads on the basis that it is never wrong, but rather leads, and on occasions of weakness or mistake, corrects and does so within a political arena driven by an opposition playing patio politics with our lives with no concern about the machinations and political hijackings that they proceed with.

    Your concern about Gib politics is admirable, but you choose to bicker and focus at the few misgivings of the GSD valid as they are, and ignore the incredible injustice to our democracy, that being the opposition.

    Gib is prosperous on so many levels comparably to even the wealthiest nations and socially stable with low crime, lowest unemployment in Europe, generally low taxes across the board, free education to university and beyond, the list is long very long and distinguished too.

    Yes mistakes are made, but give us a break and query what the GSLP have done as an opposition other than moan and sit on the fence all at our expence and with the arrogance that allows a party that's lost four elections to continue with the same leader and a second in line who may have issues to answer.

    Do yourself credit Robert and dig at the democratic deficit we have lived for 15 years at the expense of an anti cousin Peter crusade.

  76. Anonymous at 17:54

    I think a large majority of the readers of this blog will disagree that I "BICKER". Once again a misjudgment. Bickering may come from commentatotrs and, with respect, the majoprity of the bickering comes from GSD supporters.

    The issues that I raise in my pieces are substantive and important issues. The GSD could do worse than to pay a little attention to them. There are others involved in politics that do so.

    The misgivings are not "FEW" most are manifesto promises on which they have failed the electorate. ALL are ones on which I (and from comments many people) feel strongly about.

    The opposition are not in power. They do not have to answer. Leave the family out of this. I do I hope in future Peter will. Although the publicity i have got from his "Cousin Robert" comment on GBC has been priceless, thank you.

  77. Estas equivocao Robert, but it's your prerogative. You are right on the issues that you right about, they are substantive, unfortunately your bloggers seem interested in other matters. The thrust of the majority of your posts are worthy of consideration and carry substance. They all relate primarily to reforms some valid some (in ny opinion) excessive and tantamount to a Govt by committee. Regardless of this the focus of your bloggers is geared only at discrediting a Govt that by your own admition has improved and transformed Gib on many levels. The fact that "others" may be paying lip service to your experiment does not mean that the GSD aren't paying attention. there is no doubt that LW is and will have impact.
    As for the family comment, my apologies.
    Oh I maintain that there are few misgivings when one considers the bigger picture and the opposition may not be in power but are elected and are aspiring to be in power, a frightening possibility given their jack if substance which you evidently seem to shy away from.

  78. Anon 17:54

    Wealthy and prosperous? We OWE MILLIONS!

    Lowest unemployment rates in Europe? There are only 30 000 of us!! Can't be that hard.

    Low Crime rates? They are at an ALL TIME HIGH and RISING.

    As for the current TAX system I believe it benefits the Rich mostly. Tu sabe lo CAT 2, 3, 4.

    Free Education? For how much longer? At this rate we won't be able to sustain such a system for much longer.


  79. I'm not sure what's bothering me the most today, last night's part political broadcast or today little letter in the chronicle.

    Last night, the GSD tells us to stop complaining about everything else, and concentrate instead on what a lovely Main Street we have.

    Today Mr Andlaw tells the world are opinions are worthless, y encima con orgullo!

    I'm getting sick and tired of all this! Quien se han creido que son toda esta gente?

    Its high time they stopped patronising the ordinary man & woman on the street because we have a voice too, and a vote!

  80. K get a grip, your interpretations are completely off the mark and your excuses riddled with misconceptions that the party you apparently don't support are so desperate to shove down our throats.
    The facts are there, the standard of living is real, unemployment is the lowest in Europe, the economy by conoarisson to most developed nations is on a different level ( debt by the way is only for infrastructure), socially we are educated and we have never been so politically stable in our history. Furthermore the confidence that others including massive organisations have in our economy is something to be proud of. You Like the part you don't support choose only to spin a negative that is not there.

  81. To Kaelan Joyce 19:18

    "there are only 30 000 of us!! Can't be that hard." ?

    It cannot be that hard? It can indeed, in fact it is! A population of that size in the tiny little space that there is... It is amazing that we have such a good employment record. I mean just look across the border... La Linea 60,000 with a space of more than 10 Gibraltars and with an unemployment rate of over 10,000.

    One has to bear in mind the amount of Linense that are employed (legally and illegally) in Gibraltar. Therefore, it is hard to keep employment up.

    We owe millions? In relation to the rest of Europe, we are not doing that badly in terms of debt, at least that is what the estimates show.

    Note, my argument is based on statistics not party bias! Look at the figures in the estimates.


  82. J, I would add that the debt is purely for infrastructure works which are of benefit to gib. Every economy in the world survives on debt, we are no different except that our debt is actually self imposed and driven by required works, our financial position is more than safe and not as some may have us believe.
    The opposition resorts only to scare mongering as a means to win the election. Think about it:
    The constitution
    The port
    The tourist numbers
    The buses
    The economy
    All spun as potential disasters or in the case of the constitution it was maybe, don't know, yes , no.
    Now we have the airlines doubt, the airport doubt, the debt doubt. Well given historical evidence bring it on.
    Oh and let's not forget our political stature today, in light of the new gaurantees that our constitution gives us.

  83. Anon 21:00 and J 21:19

    I was merely putting things into context. You cannot quote facts and figures without taking into account the “other” factors.

    The fact is Gibraltar is diminutive in comparison to other EU states. It is one thing to create employment opportunities for 30 000 people and quite another to do so for a MILLION or more! This is a FACT.

    We are MILLIONS of pounds in debt no matter how you wish to spin it. A debt of epic proportions of the likes that Gibraltar has never encountered before and that incidentally our Children and their Children after will have to pay off. This is also a FACT.

    Politically stable? hahhah hahahah What Gibraltar do you live? Not this one.

    Furthermore Anon 21:00, I find these comments regarding my postings amusing:

    "Off the mark", "excuses riddled with misconceptions" and "desperate to shove down our throats".

    On the contrary they are ON the mark and they are not "excuses" but rather objective assessments.

    I base my assumptions on FACTS and figures rather than subjective views, unlike YOU.

    I am not "desperate" to shove anything down anyone’s throat. What I AM doing, is exercising my democratic right to freely express myself.

    At least I do so openly, with my NAME. Whilst being fully aware that I could be held accountable for my statements and that repercussions could be in order. Unlike you who "bravely" posts behind the cloak of anonymity.

    Who are you? You who dares to belittle my comments. Go on then......

    PS – J por el AMOR de DIOS. Please do not compare us to La Linea. Not even the Spanish Government wants to be associated with them! It is a dump. Additionally La Linea De La Concepcion is not an EU state it is a TOWN in Spain. A TOWN that has been neglected by its Government for way to long.

    You comparison is completely out of CONTEXT.


  84. This K guy is amusing

  85. totally agree, but one thing wasn't it the GSD who used to say that Gibraltar was economically in ruins when the GSLP was in Government and the debt was only a fraction of what it was?
    Vale then you can now admit that the GSD when in Opposition was wrong in their criticisms???
    What is happening is that you are now on the receiving end.
    Well thats life and you have to live with it!!!

  86. J.............. 22Febuary 2011 21:19

    You argument is based on statistics and not party bias?

    Have you really looked at the estimates?

    Are you good enough to find out how the debt has been shown to be less than it actually is?

    Come on J work it out.

  87. Lets not compare debt comparisons in an economy lead by 16 year old boys in fast lanches to an economy in which we have FTSE 100 companies are comfortable enough to be based here. Give us a break!

  88. I can't wait for the K classic, it's coming you know it is. It'll be the patriotic call to arms of how our people are suffering and the unemployed are in the streets and wait for it, the quotas on foreign employment. Hey, we can bring back the 1st of July law remember that one?

  89. So let's not compare the debt. Why? cos it's not convenient? And Old boys in fast launches? And 27 Banks as opposed to only a few now? Anyway if you wish to go to the past answer my question in relation to the fractional debt compared to the one we have now which by the way it is now presented is even less than what was stated by the GSD IN THE PAST.

  90. Anon 22Febuary 2011 22:23

    What are you saying? That the debt was greater then?

    Or that the debt is greater now?

    Or do you just want to take a slug at the Gslp?

    Or has the Panorama poll confused your little grey cells?

  91. I am sure that Kaelan Joyce's heart is in the right place. I have read his past comments with interest. He makes good contributions from time to time although he is clearly biased ( a quick glimpse at his past postings will shows where his loyalty lies ...its just so clear mate).

    However, this time his gone too far in his anti blue and yellow streak. He cannot even accept the good things that the GSD have achieved or maintained. Free education (he says ...lets see how long it lasts) or that uneployment figures are low (says well can't be that hard...)

    The most amusing thing is how he shoots from the hip with off the cuff remarks and then calls them FACT but of course without quoting sources, figures or statitics. Common mate get a grip and be objective. criticise government for their failings give credit where credit is due and of course feel free also to add the many crticisms that could also rightly be levied to the opposition party (which you do not support) LOL.

  92. K,
    I am uncomfortable with your ultra nationalistic stance, You seem like you want to ship every non 100% llanito far far away!!

  93. Good to see the GSD sycophants ganging up on me in such a blatant manner. Por que sera? ;) hahaha Love it!!!

    Anon 22:41

    I am and was totally AGAINST the 4th of July rule.

    As for my set quota theory, I have advocated in the past set quota limits on the amount of locals that should be employed (15% not much is it?) by Private firms. And not the OTHER WAY ROUND and there is a BIG difference.

    Anon 00:08

    I shoot from the Hip with off the cuff remarks?

    Crime rates at an all time high and rising- please feel free to find such FACTS, figures and statistics in the Gibraltar Chronicle or Panorama. They are printed out on a monthly basis.

    Debt - anyone who knows anything about our current financials knows this. Unfortunately the CM is the ONLY one who can give us an EXACT figure as he has changed the way our current and total net debt is calculated.

    Free Education on the way to being scraped - one plus one equals TWO. Millions in debt plus a hefty increase in tuition fees equals............

    I do not shoot from the hip my misguided friend. What I am is well informed, unlike others.

    PS- You need to work on your grammar.


  94. "Free Education"? It is certainly free at the point of use but is definitely paid for by the Gibraltar taxpayer!

    Our education system is, overall, something to be proud of and which should continue to be supported well into the future. Taking into account the imminent tuition fee hikes in the UK and the state of the local jobs market though, isn't there an argument for reassessing our University grants system?

  95. No one is ganging up on you Kaelan, do not confuse other well founded and realistic opinions with an attack on you. You already sound like the GSLP party machinery, the moment someone puts you right you get defensive.

    You impressions of Gibraltar are impressively way of the mark. If you really want a barometer on Gibs socioeconomic status just look around you, Ireland, Portugal, Greece, Spain, U.K (forced into a weak coalition), the list is frightening, what's more and I repeat, Gibraltar had the lowest unemployment in Europe, the lowest crime which admittedly is up but is only so because of unemployment in Spain (little can be done here), low taxes, pensioners who do not pay tax, continous GDP growth (only China and a few others are better in this regard), huge confidence by investors, OECD in our finance driven by quality and not quantity, Gib alone underwrites nearly 10% of motor insurance in the UK.

    Our success has been femominal and is regarded as so by most who visit. It's is a real shame that you and others are blinded by this propaganda from the party you do not support.

  96. Guys seriously now, winds up aside.....

    If truth be told the GSD Government has indeed done great things for Gibraltar in the past, not even I can deny that!

    I even voted for a few of their candidates at the last elections and the elections before that! But there is a need to look FORWARD. What is important is the NOW and the TOMORROW, not the PAST and the YESTERDAY!

    Anon 00:49

    Ultra nationalistic? Selwyn Figueras (possible GSD candidate) typically once branded me so.

    WHY? Is this because I advocate preferential treatment for OUR people in OUR land?

    Is this not OUR Gibraltar? Should Gibraltar not be FIRST and FOREMOST for the Gibraltarians?

    Now I assume you will proceed to tell me how LAZY OUR PEOPLE ARE and that there is a NEED for foreign labour. Which I concede there is at times (especially now with the recent establishment of FTSE companies) but not always.

    It is funny how the people who usually claim such things are high flyers, who happen earn A LOT of CASH. I do wonder who you are.

    So stating that a 15% minimum quota limit should be set on the amount of locals that should be employed by private firms in Gibraltar is being ultra nationalistic then?

    Why is this exactly? WHY is advocating a SLIGHT advantage for OUR people in OUR land so ULTRA nationalistic? Please feel free to elaborate as I am curious.

    People like you disguise extreme leniency shown towards non locals by creating this “aura” of misconception that OUR people DON’T want to work. Then proceed to brand me Ultra Nationalistic. Ere un makina!! lololol

    I am fed up of seeing MY people getting treated like second hand citizens in their OWN land, whilst Gibraltarian high flyers nod in approval (not all though but many do).


    Please note that in my humble opinion Nationality is not only something you are BORN into but also something you EARN.

    I consider those who have lived here many years (regardless of race/religion etc) to be as Gibraltarian as I am.

    Two of my best friends are from India and most of the kids at the gym are Moroccan. If you knew me you would never claim such things.

    Furthermore please note that the type of nationalism I adhere to though is the liberal form otherwise known as Civic nationalism, which is a non-xenophobic form compatible with liberal values of freedom, tolerance, equality, and individual rights.


  97. K,
    You seem to be confusing yourself now, what if those morrocan friends of your started taking away the jobs of locals?
    If you were in government who would you define local then, is it those people who speak with your accent? The must be an objective criteria, which even you seem to be unsure about.

  98. Kaelan, completely with you!

    I also have no problem with foreign workers foreign residents etc. In fact I have many foreign friends who currently reside in our Gibraltar, and I have also been a foreign worker in various foreign countries on several ocassions.

    However, in our being accepting it does not give Carta Blanca for us to be treated like second class citizens in our own land. I also agree with you that it is generally llanito high flyers - who are normally detached from reality - that make the claims and are the first ones to brand people like us as ultra nationalistic and dangerous! In my book, its generally "Gente del pish" que siempre han tenido todo muy facil y no saben lo que cuesta un saco de papas!

    I am in my thirties, qualified, with what i consider some "valid" experience, both professionally and life experienc; I have worked away from Gib, but now that I am back in my homeland I find I cannot get any sort of employment! And Gibraltar is really small where the six Degrees thing whittles down to the Two degree, so we get to hear things, and it has come to my attention that various of my job applications have been dismissed without even an acknowledgement or decline merely because I am Gibraltarian and have been brushed off as "lazy". And then, withlocal employers, you get the usual, "We are looking for someone with LESS experience" (The new Overqualified it seems) and / or "We are seeking for a younger candidate" (despite being relatively young myself at just 30!). True stories these - I can already hear the GSD fan base making claims that I am making these things up.

    Sadly, although it is somewhat selfishly comforting, I am not alone, as I know quite a few number of Gibraltarians in my age bracket currently going through the same and getting the same response.

    So I agree, Kaelan, We should look after ourselves doesn't mean we cannot be welcoming and accepting of others in our homeland too! We can do both!

    Maybe if some of the high flyers, or their offspring, would have had to take up after school jobs during their latter teen years, holiday jobs, and juggle up to three jobs whilst undertaking a degree at uni, to come back to this Gibraltar, they would think differently.

    In Gibraltar, We are our own worst enemies it seems! And the Government voted in by THE People of Gibraltar to Serve the People of Gibraltar, should look after the People of Gibraltar, whilst they also welcome others and accept others into our community.

  99. And the future is what exactly K. A Govt who continues in the main to produce results as you have admitted to or an opposition who are so far off the mark of representing any type of good Govt as to be not worth considering.
    If it's the people of Gib that interests you, then by all means pursue policy I'm the way that LW describes and is proactive, whilst at the same time acknowledging that our current positive and successful status is a result of good sensible and strong Govt which can always and should always be improved upon.

  100. Kaelan... This is rich coming from someone who fronted a very public campaign against Gibraltarians who weresupporting Spain during the World Cup? Where was your non-xenophobic liberal tolerance at that time?

    Anyway, this isn't the Kaelan debate...

    To get back on point. I really do hope that a few capable and credible individuals step forward and support Robert in our cause.

    It's all very well having all of us sat at our PCs ranting but it's time we put our money where our mouth is and actually did something about it.

    I would urge anyone in the position to do so to please step forward on behalf of Gibraltarian's like me who up until now have had no voice and have been stuck between these bickering dinosaur parties since el año de la Pepa.

    I'm not expecting a mass revolution - Just representation and recognition of those who don't fit in with the polarised nature of our current political system and a bit of a wake up call to whoever does end up in power.

    Good luck Robert

  101. WSG

    My very public campaign?? I had ONE Facebook group, which happend to be very popular.

    Furthemore I barely commented! Other people did! I just created it for FUN!! As my mates were supporting Spain. They even created the "anti" group "Soy llanito and I support Spain y Que".

    It was just banter between mates that admittedly it did spiral out of controlled :(

    Please go to the "PALOMO" group and actually READ the GROUP statements. Get properly informed.

    They go as follows:

    "Pensamos que Esta MAL que un LLANITO apoye a Espania, Cuelge sus Banderas de sus Balcones llanitos y se pongan sus Camisetas. Y el AMOR PROPIO GENTE?? NO AY ORGULLO YA??? Gibraltar para los llanitos y Espania pa los Espanioles!"


    "DISCLAIMER - This GROUP is open to DEBATE and is NOT Anti-Spanish. I have seen alot of FANATICAL COMMENTS from BOTH SIDES and must make it CLEAR that NOTHING CAN CONDONE VIOLENCE! I will NOT be held responsible for anyone's actions or statements or any negative outcome that comes from the use of information contained within these pages."

    BUT please do note I do STAND by my statements.

    If it would have been any other nation it would have been different. But how can Gibraltarians hang Spanish flags from their Windows and wear their national shirts?? Whilst being fully aware that our neighbours think we are RIGHTLY THEIRS. What messsage are we then sending across to them?

    Spain DO MIX sports with POLITICS - FACT.

    Evidence of this was clear. When they won the World Cup and La linea Digital put a photo of a Gibraltarian registered car draped in Spanish flags heading their MAIN article. SPAIN WINS WORLD CUP (obviously in Spanish).

    The photo and LINK to this page are both on the PALOMO group.

    Tu cre eso pega?? Ni con super glue guapa! lolol

    Please do not be naive.

    If we concede an inch to Spain they will proceed to take a MILE!! All we all know that.


  102. My last posting of the day as I have used up my entire lunch break writing replies. Lol (SAD SOY)

    Anon 13:43

    I am not “confusing myself” ??? Not at all. You just DON’T GET IT.

    Non locals are those who come from abroad (other countries), who have never lived in Gibraltar before and have therefore never contributed to our economy. Comprende now??? Or shall I explain again?

    I regard ANYONE who has been born, bred and educated in Gibraltar (regardless of race or religion) to be local, as are non nationals who have spent many years in Gibraltar.

    Either way I am not stating non locals are not welcome. Not at all! I have many non locals’ friends. What I am stating is that preferential treatment should be given to OUR people in OUR land now and always. That is all.

    Anon 14:01

    Good to see you come forward. I know there are many people like you in Gibraltar. That is why I am so vehemently trying to put these points across.

    Thank you for your support : )

    Anon 14:58

    You now raise valid points worthy of my time : )

    I will have to agree, somewhat.


    Have you checked out the group logo?? I think you can tell by simply looking at it I was “messing around”. I never expected to have over 1000 members in such a short space of time. Since then I have hardly posted anything on the group and have ceased to advertise it. Many members have now left due to group inactivity. The group is still open though and continues to have other 1000 members to date.

    Ps - Talking about grammar:

    "It was just banter between mates that admittedly it did spiral out of controlled" hahaha WTF!!

    What I meant was "It was just banter between mates that admittedly spiraled out of control."


  103. K,
    you don't convince me, just because as you've stated a few times that you have many non local friends, your best friends are indian etc does not mean you're not a xenophobe (ask your Indian friends what they think)
    Again I ask how long do you have to live in Gib to be local????
    Are those friends really Indian or is it their parents who are in fact Indian and you just call them Indian because of their parents, when in fact they are just as Llanito as you and me.
    You are a dangerous nationalist I think.

  104. Kaelan, cuidao, there's a 'grupito' out to get you!

    A dangerous nationalist indeed!

    God forbid you should stand up for the ordinary Gibraltarian on the street, you know, el que no tiene padrinaje or nadie que lo enchufe in Daddy's firm, or Daddy's friend's firm!

  105. "I am in my thirties, qualified, with what i consider some "valid" experience, both professionally and life experienc; I have worked away from Gib, but now that I am back in my homeland I find I cannot get any sort of employment!"

    Well, instead of whingeing and moaning why not become an entrepreneur and start a business? Doesn't have to be a major undertaking. Selling coffee or rolls from a small van or cart is a small business - and it can grow to greater things.

  106. Wow, has this blog spiralled out of control.

    As briefly as possible. Foreigners are very much important to Gibraltar in all senses. Be it Tourists, Moroccan workers, High Net worth individuals, or simply qualified Europeans, they all ensure Gibraltar prospers. All of whom do so in their own manner.

    It all depends on whether you are individualistic and want to simply pursue your own interests no matter the impact on your state/ community (in which case you fall in the same category of those ‘del pish’)
    Or whether you are more communitarian and want the state/community you are in to prosper.

    Very importantly, do you ‘anon 14:01’ believe the phenomenon of being “enchufado” exists only in Gibraltar (whether it does or doesn’t)? There were two very interesting documentaries on BBC 2 a few weeks ago called “Posh and Posher: why public school boys run Britain” and “Who gets the Best Jobs”. They are absolutely brilliant and a very interesting watch. Also there was an article on the Guardian which commented on how a conservative party dinner (costing £400 a head) was also used as an ‘auction’ of internships between parents (costing £3000 for each internship). Internships in the UK are presently, in this boom of unemployment, very valuable as they are ‘voluntary’ and thus a very good profit for companies (especially when they receive £3000 for hiring).

    In Gibraltar, funnily enough, it is harder to “enshufar”. As an example, an application comes out for a position as an AO in the civil service. 1000 people apply, of the 4 board members (interviewers) each of them knows quite well over 50 applicants. Each of them gets asked favours by 100s of parents and families. Now, just imagine the amount of (external) pressure against those board members.

    Again I don’t question whether it happens or not, just see that Gib is not an exception if it does.


  107. Hi J
    Yes and that happens with Los conservatives, liberals, labour, GSD, GSLP etc....

  108. Anon 18:21

    Now I am "dangerous" also. It just keeps getting better and better. LOL

    I couldn't care two hoots if I convince you or not.

    With me what you see is what you get and everyone knows it.


    Are you for REAL?

    An entrepreneur selling coffee and rolls? hahahahaahhaha

    You are being VERY naive. Do you still live with your parents? How old are you?

    Maybe in Disney Land you can become an entrepreneur selling coffee and rolls, that can then "grow to greater things". In the REAL world things are not that simple.


  109. Andrew 1857

    Unfair of you to make a comment like this, without even knowing who I am, wjhat I have done to remedy my situation, etc.

    Of course starting a business is an option, but I was commenting in line with the discussion. But nonetheless, it seems you think that a Government should not occupy themselves with creating employment because everybody should start a business????? And why should I sell rolls out of a van??? Why doesn't Govt spend money on buying us all vans from where we can sell these rolls instead of payting for our education??

    Seguro ke ere del clan del pish and you don't know what real work is. Seras el ke va con el clip board, pen and pointy finger and have never done a second of actual physical work!