At cliff’s edge


With the NMI financial posture dangerously clamped down by a huge deficit, we sit and ponder what other devastating hardship would emerge that would adversely affect family pocketbooks in the near-term.

When more than half of employees here earn poverty income level or below you know so-called leadership has failed royally in its fiduciary duty. This negligence doubles down, with more than 46 percent of our people without health insurance of some sort.

Definitely, one could only envision the parlous consequences of these familial setbacks NMI-wide. How would families fare if Trump slashes more entitlement programs that include food stamps and help for senior citizens? Would not this translate into more debilitating form of hardship for families here?

Sadly, irrelevant valedictory speeches about poverty here aren’t going to help the multitude deal with the deepening mess. Moreover, the mercurial and negligent “solutions driven” team can no longer be in denial of reality of bad economic conditions that fan the fire of poverty NMI-wide.

These conditions place NMI families at the cliff’s edge financially. But then it’s deafening the lack of some thoughtful blueprint that lays out realistic answers to resolve the familial economic tsunami.

Though national Republican policy on the Affordable Care Act (Obamacare) has yet to emerge with clarity, it’s an issue to follow through to completion. A change shifts financial responsibility to state and territorial governments.

Given the uncertainty of the NMI’s financial posture, it behooves so-called leadership to exercise some real time agility doing the mea culpa with Trump. Otherwise, we’d have to line up for a sunset parade to American Memorial Park protesting impending cuts.

The federal government now pays for the cost of these and other programs. If push comes to shove, could the NMI navigate this obligation or “not yet, already?” Subjecting our people to vicious and mind numbing hardship isn’t self-government, is it? Neither is bankruptcy!

CW Issue: The administration is using its quiet tentacles, pushing for 4,000 CW workers for Best Sunshine. The hospital management was told it’s a semi-autonomous agency and must make do with what it has today. Really?

With 114 nurses subject to exclusion two years from now, is the inconsequential demeanor the attitude of this administration on an issue of dire urgency?

Land probe: The U.S. Department of Justice is reportedly investigating decisions by the Guahan Chamoru Land Trust limiting issuance of homestead land only to Chamoru descendants.

This story emerged after a federal court declared unconstitutional limiting voting on Guam’s political status plebiscite strictly to Chamorus. Understood the conflicting narrative in the collision of culture versus rights of citizens.

But without stoking racism, one should draw an honest answer: who is the colonized people since 1898? Under pertinent international law, the Chamorus have rights to self-determination. The exercise in itself should effectively eliminate all non-indigenous in this case. This isn’t so hard to understand, is it?

Indeed, the resurgence of culture steadily mounts and clashes with the military buildup in Guam. It fuels spirited discussion how the indigenous Chamorus should approach the two issues. It’s your rights, therefore stand up for it!

I can understand and appreciate the limiting notion of Guam being small and therefore incapable of self-government. This view runs against the grain of the benefits of imperialism built over decades. To succumb to this viewpoint is to prolong neocolonialism. It need not be this way!

It’s all a matter of self-definition in terms of your vision for you and posterity. In short, it’s about the self. What do you want beyond what’s before you today? You need not succumb to the whims of indigenous Chamorro who prefer pushing the agenda of neocolonialism for purposes of convenience and comfort.

Ooops! At a ribbon-cutting ceremony on the new vent system for CHC, Lt. Gov. Biktot Hokog asked the presenter if the new cooling unit would save the hospital millions. Obviously, the mercurial Hokog is incapable of separating people from issues or what’s the greater question. Isn’t it about how much has he pushed to sufficiently fund the local hospital? That he missed this point is a tale of his obvious lack of comprehension of the complexity of healthcare issues!

Reminds me of what Einstein once said, “Two things are infinite: the universe and human stupidity; and I’m not sure about the universe.”

In error: I made the mistake of calling “VIP gambling rolling chip” income. It isn’t! It’s how much wagers rolled, gambling on tables and others at the BSI temporary facility. Sorry! An honest mistake!

Nonetheless, BSI should show its income forthwith so our beholden men of wisdom on the hill would start using their calculators to figure out how much tax it should charge. Macau charges 39 percent tax on income.

Furthermore, would Capital Hill work up the courage to translate tangible opportunities to meet the needs of our people? Or are you guys so beholden to your sugar daddy it’s hard saying it’s time to do things right by doing it right? Why is your voice so muted or inaudible?

The bubble: For those basking merrily with fat sugar daddies living up their Cadillac lifestyle, notice where you’re standing. Is it the floor and is the floor the first floor? How far away is it from the ground? Does it have a strong scaffold or as crispy dangerous as dry bamboo reed?

In brief, the elected elite can’t go on ignoring and neglecting issues that directly affect families here. It’s food and health that require serious review. Are you anywhere near these issues or have you stuffed it dazed and unsure how to approach them?

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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