Everbody home?

The wellbeing of private industry here should matter to all.

When it expands in healthy ways it helps upgrade the quality of life across the archipelago. It creates jobs and gives people work opportunities to earn a living to meet basic family needs. Money moves about in the economy. More power to villagers!

While it grants that sense of optimism I had to ask myself: what’s the consequence of the departure of Nippon investments in recent past? Is anyone monitoring this ominous situation?

Isn’t this a wake-up tale that we shift ignorance and arrogance into a more lasting relationship with investors from near and far? Shouldn’t this be the paradigm dealing with investors from the Land of the Rising Sun and elsewhere?

I would think policymakers are fully wary of it so it is handled and disposed as a serious matter over business as usual. Or is my assessment shortsighted or acutely accurate?

The combined loss from the storms and investment exit is about $14 billion money that is no longer being recycled in the local economy. Even more troubling is the apparent lack of another industry to cushion the humongous loss. Dazed, we sing our rendition of White Christmas even during the Lenten Season!

Why does it matter to me? Financial security isn’t an issue one could guarantee beyond the usual frequent fluctuation throughout the course of the year. Other than a small tourism industry is there any other rock-solid economic component to scaffold mounting obligations at home?

Now sit back and watch the bankruptcy floor collapse! Everbody home?

Fiduciary: Have you factually emplaced policies to encourage expansion of private industry to spur both jobs and income for the islands? Or is your juvenile view to fast track steady economic contraction? Do you have any sense of depth of perception and purpose other than overlooking these issues?

Yes, I’m making an appeal that you return to realistic paradigms to reassess what happens when you ignore and neglect the exit of Nippon investments here. It’s about the quality of life of our people in the villages. It’s about family income that pays for the first family home, automobile, food, clothing, and other obligations. Why would you slam it into your “not yet, already” file?

Issue: Your focus should be on “wealth and jobs creation.” Or is the concept above your nimble mind? It’s about money and jobs for locals! Komprende or “not yet, already?”

The exit would further translate into far less job opportunities and income for locals associated with firms that have left in recent past or slated to leave. Where would these employees go for their next jobs? The loss of revenue is the other challenge in terms of its replacement.

Has private industry seen a surge in new business ventures here recently? Or is there a lull while we struggle to figure out the apparent uncertainty of investments here? Troubling, isn’t it when there are more questions than there are answers from our esteemed men of wisdom.

New MW rate: About 20 states have implemented a $15-an-hour minimum wage that equally triggered a tsunami of small business closures and job losses.

Small business owners simply decided to close down given the high cost of operations and healthcare payment they remit for employees. Goes to show that some good news aren’t necessarily so, when the opposite effect hits home.

Beyond: I’d hum a favorite kanaka tune (Beyond the Rainbow) while doing home chores, reading or scribbling. It gives me the opportunity to take an imaginary trip to an island somewhere alone to relax in all its simplicity.

There are the natural settings of the land and sea for sustenance and a seaside cave for shelter while birds sing happily about at dawn. At sunset, I see the rainbow in the horizon as distant skies gathering clouds chase it down threatening a rainstorm. Nature!

Beyond the reef a canoe sails home at sunset. It must be a long journey or returning fishermen after a whole day floating out in the deep blue.

Though the discordant noise of events around us make for that imperfect day in tropical paradise. I’d sail home quietly to the mellifluous melody, Beyond the Rainbow, to maintain sanity!

John S. Del Rosario Jr. | Contributing Author
John DelRosario Jr. is a former publisher of the Saipan Tribune and a former secretary of the Department of Public Lands.

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