Mango: Spelled c-o-r-r-u-p-t-i-o-n!

As though fatal disunity isn’t enough, Republicans have allowed the introduction of legislation that would neutralize integrity in the casino law. It slammed the final nail on its own coffin!

The blatant attempt happened last week. A house republican measure (House Bill 19-195) would repeal casino law provision that prohibits the hiring of legislators and family members at Best Sunshine for at least five years.

It finally shows its true colors founded on greed and the unintended consequence of planting the seed of corruption, self-destruction and the credibility of a controversial industry here.

The approval of policy, including proposed laws by the legislature, is usually intended to benefit a majority of people it represents. The focus normally envisions helping the entire NMI community.

Appalling though the bold and open agenda to derail strengthening of our democratic institutions protecting the innocent. Ever heard of moral values? Shouldn’t you use this as your foundation to promote stronger governance? So it’s time for you to harvest the fruits of your labor? Talk about the epitome of greed!

There’s no doubt in mind that this prompts voters to actively weed out the warp minded beginning this November. Heard a lot of voting students declare, “No Mas!”

From the outset, the intent of the legislation conflicts with the Open Government Act (OGA). The law prohibits legislators or family members benefiting from laws they’ve worked on as lawmakers. Remember the MV Luta case where Biktot Hokog’s family benefited from his action? It would seem to me very similar, if not, exactly the same! It’s a direct violation of the OGA!

Is it now fashionable that only the politically powerful are at liberty to fill their pockets under the maturing “elite culture? You prep yourselves as to completely ignore that “we the people” also need greater economic freedom? Have you done anything on our behalf?

It is no wonder that wherever I roam folks are saying “Enough!” to incumbent Republican legislators. Haven’t we learned from the lessons of recent history? It must be new Republican rare mango spelled c-o-r-r-u-p-t-i-o-n!

Arrogance vs public service
Over the years, I’ve seen how local government managers have used the collar of their office to show “who is the boss” in their grand immaturity. They’d find every legal and administrative excuse to hurl at poor Mr. Public seeking help from the alleged “government of the people, for the people and by the people”.

Eggheads in government place greater importance in their authority than coming to terms with the public aspect of their roles. This arrogance and abrasive attitude turns into a huge hurdle for simple Mr. Public (taxpayer) who usually gives up trying after begging for help for too long only to be flatly denied services instantly.

A perceptive reader reacted with a tongue in cheek view: “Here is a single parent, a mother of two young children ages 10 months and 3 years old. She lives in an apartment paying $350/month rent $150/mo for utilities and not much left for food and other bare essentials for the two kids.

“She hitches a ride every day to work with her brother where she is making $6.50 an hour. She applied for help at the food stamp office for which she was given the run around asking her to go get this and get that. After so much running around without ever seeing at least the dim light at the end of the tunnel, she was FLATLY DENIED any food stamp help in the end.

“So then tell out strait, HOW RELIABLE are those statistics, I can see from afar the many massage traces on the paper the information is written on as provided. You never know who is the force behind making things look honky dory when in fact not so. Not believing, just review those records hoping they are fudged.

This is a perfect example of sheer negligence simply failing to help the needy. If the food stamps staff were listening he or she would easily empathize—bending backwards—to help the applicant. He didn’t and he’s probably saying, “Good riddance!” Really?

More junkets: As taxpayers, we insist for transparency in the publication of our taxes spent so far this year on junket trips abroad. This list should include destination, purpose, and number of people involved; total per diem paid, cost for airline tickets and an explanation of the benefits to taxpayers. Please write it in simple sentences (if you can write) with appropriate syntax, diction, grammatical integrity, etc.

We insist on this explanation wary that we have problems paying utility bills with CUC, other obligations to vendors who’ve waited for over a year, money for the Settlement Fund and land compensation, among others. Interesting the junket trips after the vacuous announcement that the economy has improved. Really? Has this improvement moved to family pocketbooks or is it in your wallets to pay for excesses abroad?

Discipline: When I started out as cub reporter, there was the persistent conviction to capture the foundation of journalistic writing. It was a difficult beginning trying to figure what newswriting entails. I was told of the Five Ws and an H. It piqued my interest probing which one comes first or just how do I approach it. It took a lot of trip to my manual typewriter with the Micronesian News Service to hone my ABCs.

Writing well entails nothing else but “writing,” daily. Textbooks and lectures are helpful but building journalistic writing skills entail, if I may reiterate, actually writing! And good writing is rewriting! It took a little time to figure out the beast or “discipline” in journalistic writing. I started strengthening it in 1976 after journalism school and training. Indeed, it was a long worthy journey.

The term “discipline” though is a good word for eggheads on the hill to redefine and understand. Get out of your elitist nest so we can stand together and see eye-to-eye. Sayu?

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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