Category: GENERAL

MOSCOW — Tens of thousands of Russians gathered peacefully in central Moscow on Saturday to shout “Putin is a thief” and “Russia without Putin,” forcing the Kremlin to confront a level of public discontent that has not been seen here since Vladimir V. Putin first became president 12 years ago.

via Tens of Thousands Protest in Moscow, Russia, in Defiance of Putin –


Christmas Economics

Christmas has been a universal catalysis for bringing out the best of values within people. The last few years have seen this being changed as people concentrate on their physical possessions rather on their emotional connections.

The news has raised alarming eye brows around the world of a toddler in China eroneously wandering across th treet an being ran over by oncoming traffic. It is now confirmed that the child died as a result of the injuries sustained in that fateful incident.

How is it possible that the drivers of the vehicles that ran over the infant did not see the child? Even more frightening is the inexplicable response of pedestrians and passers-by who passed the injured child lying helplessly in the busy street. Some persons actually walked right over the distressed child as if she were nothing but an inanimate obstacle in the pathway.

Is this the way China really treats it citizens and its children? I was of the opinion that such “accidents” were only the art work of the Hollywood studios for pure entertainment purposes. But the fact that a child can be run down in broad daylight multiple times indicates that the world or human societies are not that far removed from the animal kingdom. The Chinese authorities have not been noted as addressing this inhumane treatment of a human being. This is hopefully not some Chines drivers way of saying that they want a reduction in their country’s population. We have to remember that more than a quarter of the people on earth are repotedly living in China.

Circumstances Beyond My Control

Please be advised that the absence of new posts has been due to a system malfunction from within the WordPress servers. I have made WordPress aware of the problem; they are yet to fully resolve the matter.

Here is something that you never knew Michael Jackson was good at doing. (The video is preceded by a thirty-second advertisement)

Vodpod videos no longer available.

Chavez tells his citizens that he is not going to die

President of Venezuela, Hugo Chavez, is undoubtedly one of Latin America’s most formidable political titans.

In his twelve-year run as president he has made headlines around the world. Who can ever forget the historical boldness of Chavez when he went right in President Bush’s yard and called him the devil?
Chavez, however, has also been of help to us here in St Vincent. The much talked about “Labour Gas” is the initiative of his regime. He continues to offer LPG for many in the island. Chavez is now making global headlines but of a different sort. While in Cuba last month he was forced to have emergency surgery: the diagnosis, cancer.
Now, after just returning home, he is back in Cuba for Chemotherapy tomorrow, Sunday 17.
The Opposition in Venezuela is ranting that he should delegate his presidential duties to his VP but Chavez would have none of it.
But the point I wish to get at here is the facing of his mortality by this political militant. The US media has already surfaced reports that he has colon cancer. Mr Chavez has only said a cancerous tumour was removed from his “pelvic region”.
I am certain Hugo does not want to appear weak and unable to lead his revolutionary efforts in the Bolivian republic; however, he is learning that mortal man is no match for circumstance. In an unprecedented move he actually handed some of his presidential roles to his finance minister and VP. His must be a condition that has the potential for being life threatening. While in Cuba his doctors advised him to stay there for up to the reported 180 days, but Chavez suddenly came home to appease any growing factions of rebellion about his ineligibility to preside over the country.
The fact that he is, once again, in Cuba says the seriousness of his ailment.
In his usual attempts at being fully in charge of the situation, President Chavez last words at the airport was “it’s not time to die, it’s time to live.”
I am reminded of another Caribbean political leader, Mr David Thompson, former PM of Barbados. He, too, was diagnosed with cancer and had to seek medical treatment abroad. However, Mr Thompson never once indicated that he knew for a fact he was going to live. Yes, he admitted he would fight with all his might, but he also told the Barbados people that his “fate is in the hands of the Lord.”
David Thompson died of pancreatic cancer not too long after that radio address from a New York hospital bed.
Why does Mr Chavez on the other hand want to give the impression that his life is in his hands? He believes in his military training so much that he cannot accept there are situations where he cannot strategize his way out. He also categorically told his citizens that he will come back better than he is leaving.
I assume that if Mr Chavez is to be in therapy for the rest of this year then Venezuela will be nearing the time of a new leader selection. There is something about pride and illness that just doesn’t sync.
Have Vincentians lit their last “Labour Gas” bottle?

Blogosphere, here I Come!

It is with eager anticipation that I release the following message as a preparatory task for being officially verified and ratified by the major international search engines as a genuine blog and given the privilege of being listed in their directories among the best of the best!!

The code is: TABFVMYAZZ79

A moment ago I invited you to join me on a new blog site I recently made public; however, as soon as I typed the ending of that blog I immediately felt a nudge from the heart that this blog, Ashford Daniel Writes is the one to use indefinitely. It also confirms with what I was saying in that invitation about success being sweeter when it comes from unexpected places.

I am still finding my way about WordPress and there is still much for me to discover and benefit from, including the quick access to the international blogosphere.

I am therefore recalling that invitation because I am staying right here with Ashford Daniel Writes.

Once again, my future posts will originate from this site.

Power to the Reader!

“Jesus Loves Even Me”

The beginning of summer takes me back to a long lost, almost forgotten holiday period when I was a child. Oh, I must have been age 9 or thereabouts. Anyway, being home from school, my mother sent me to the shop. Although I can’t remember exactly what the sopping list was, I know it wasn’t the usual bread—which was bought on evenings—so it probably was chicken, or something essential to the mid-day pot.

Two unforgettable things happened on this trip. The first was that, as I reached Evesham just outside the shop then operated by Mrs Delplesche, the most terribly noisy thunder pealed across the heavens. Actually, the thunder seemed to actually peel back the sky as one might do a curtain during a staged performance.

I remember that the umbrella that I was using to shelter the drizzling rain almost took flight from my bony hand. In fact, I clearly remember literally jumping off the ground. If it were possible for a person to jump out of their skin, I would have shed mines right then and there.

I wanted to cry, being so frightened: but I didn’t shed a tear; I refused to let the strange grown ups around see me cry. Thinking about it now, I am pretty sure those grown ups were just as frightened as I was and would probably have wanted to be indoors to run under the bed and “bawl”.

Anyway, I went down to the Forde shop. I must pause as I remember the Forde couple—both senior citizens, both now deceased—slowly moving about behind the counter of this childhood shop.

When I got back home mommy took a song book and started to sing and teach me a song I will always remember. She must have known that I was terrified being on the road with such a powerfully loud thunder.

The words, and voice of my mother’s singing are still echoing in my ears even to this day:

“I am so glad that my Father in heaven

Tells of His love in the book He has written

Wonderful things in the Bible I see

This is the dearest that Jesus loves me

I am so glad that Jesus loves me

Jesus loves me

Jesus loves me

I am so glad that Jesus loves me

Jesus loves even me!”

This was one of the few moments I know that mommy and I were able to share a quality moment bonding as mother and son. It is only now after mommy herself is in heaven and I am all grown and a pilgrim on earth, that I appreciate the significance of having Jesus’ love as I face this earthly life on my own.

My mother breathed into my inner being and spirit the comforting truth that my real Father, provider, caretaker, Creator, helper is in heaven and does love me.

I have come to realize that God’s love is characterized by His made up mind to always help, forgive and be there. Unfortunately, humans look at how other human beings try to “love” them and then they want to define God’s love as they have experienced  the heart breaking love of man.

But that is a big mistake. We have it twisted!

Instead of judging God and His love based on the failed love of man, we should really get to know God’s in- spite- of- it- all love and in turn love our fellow man as God loves us.

Up until a few years ago when my mommy’s song was sung in church, I never ever heard it; I used to often wonder if I had imagined that song because no-one else anywhere seemed to know it.

But when it was sung in church recently, all the precious memories came flooding my emotional being.

You know, I have been blessed to have had a mother who was able to impart a seed of faith to me in the growing years so that now I can rest assured that Jesus doesn’t give up on anyone, so I cant give up either.

But what about the numerous children who come of age today and don’t realize who their real helper and hope is?

It is a frightening thought and so many live without the Saviour’s love and their whole life is a sleep walking exercise.

I want somebody to know and say to themselves in the often darkened path of earth’s journey, that “JESUS LOVES EVEN ME!”

by Ashford Daniel

Vincy Carnival every year is a showcasing of the much promoted talents and cultural diversity and unique activities that have defined our Vincentian identity in the Caribbean.

The up and coming Vincentian young generation wants to party; however, they are not satisfied with the cool and mellow ways their forerunners had their fetes.

While they have kept the use of alcohol and late nights activities, they are also focusing heavily on one motivational karma: SEX.

The artistes in particular are producing very explicit sexual songs that leaves nothing to the imagination as the saying goes. They have maximized the use of pun as their literary tool.

One probably cannot blame the artistes solely .Ask the singers why they make these songs and you will ultimately hear: “It is what the people want.”

So, whereas we had the much anticipated social commentary several year ago. today’s revellers have little idea or interest in calypso much less the social commentary genre.

We have soca and all things “wave and wine” in the air waves, and this year it is loudly sexual.

Former calypsonian Godwin Augustus Oliver (GAO) has returned after a soufriere type dormancy to awake the Vincentian populace with a much taboo item of an abominable sort.

He pokes fun at the religious denominations and followers of Christ by stating that a “preacher man” some time ago “jump de sheep”. This is a Vincentian idiom for having sex with.

The song is given non-stop air play. The imagery of such worthless acts are being reinforced in the minds of all, particularly the vulnerable.

Then there is a song that owes its lines to a near fatal natural disasters in the north eastern side of the country—Georgetown—to be precise.

After a freak storm, much of the community was impassable as heavy rains literally brought down tons of heavy trees and mud into the residential areas, damaging much of the infrastructure.

Now, Vincentians are frantically jumping to the idea that “Georgetown full ah wood.”

This is using another Vincentian expression of wood which is a metaphor for the male sexual organ.

Another song reiterates that the girls want big sticks (again punning on the idea of wood) not small sticks. The audience is clearly understanding the implied meaning of girls wanting large penises for their sexual gratification as opposed to small sticks or small penises.

Another of this year’s songs echoes a call from a frustrated male home owner who wants to eliminate some rats. His solution? He wants “a pussy cat.”

This is a direct pun again on the word pussy and cat which are both use in our Vincentian vernacular to represent the female sex organs.

Now, the artistes and supporters will inevitably say that the songs are just literal compositions and mean what the words say.

But I challenge any artiste to make a song with a slightly combined imagery from two of the above “innocent” songs.

Since our men are among the best carpenters who use varying categories of furniture which comes from, you guessed it, wood, then sing about the male home owner who is physically strong enough to use the wood to kill the rats.

Why won’t this be sung?

I rest my case!

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