Is Senator Anick Joseph A Political Comedian?

Senator Francois Anick Joseph

Senator Anick Joseph of the Artibonite District, someone I used to have great esteem and admiration for, is now scooping to the lowest of the lows. Just when you think he could have spent his time pushing to pass legislation to get his district, which used to be the food-generating engine for the country, back on its knees, he wants to spend his congressional time in pettiness trying to find out how much money these President Martelly’s top political advisers (Lambert, Latortue, etc…) are getting paid to advise the president. Seriously, is this the senator’s newest punchline in his career of political comedian or what?

See, this is what you call vile demagoguery politics. In the realness of things, for the sake of checks and balances, what the senator is doing is exactly the right thing to do, and I do not think any objection to that could have stood ground. But it seems as though these folks in the so-called opposition to the Martelly administration want to enforce the law, that is if such recommendation is one of the senator’s constitutional prerogatives, only when it best serves to advance their political agenda.

Where was Senator Anick Joseph then when Moise Jean Charles was working in the National Palace as President Preval’s political adviser? I am sure President Preval had, like President Martelly, a gang of political advisers, too. If so, where was Senator Anick? I guess he was not in the Senate at the time, for I did not hear his voice wanting to institute his concept of checks and balances. Well, let us not be too harsh on the senator. Maybe that law that gives him the authority to find out how much the President Martelly’s top political advisers are getting paid had not made its way in the books yet. Right, Senator Anick?

Now you see why no one really wants to take the motives of this man and his acolytes at face value, right? I think they are in the wrong business. I should have been watching them on television doing stand-up comedy; they are a bunch of political comedians to me.

Haitians: Stop Acting Like The Dominican Republic Is So Indispensable To You

Some of my fellow Haitians are crying blood over the fact that the Dominican Republic is placing immigration restrictions on Haitians to travel over there. What is the big deal? I myself do not see what the fuss is really about.

Let us look together what the new immigration restrictions put in place say. According to the Dominican ambassador in Haiti, Mr. Ruben Silié Valdés, for now on, no visas will be granted to third parties, including these local travel agencies, on behalf of individuals like it used to be. That means if you are going to make a demand for visa to visit the Dominican Republic, you must do so in person at one of their consulates.  Also, it is required of anyone making a demand for visa to submit an array of documents, such as proof of employment, bank attestation and invitation letter. It is now a violation for employers based in the Dominican Republic to hire illegal Haitian migrants.  

To be honest with you, I applaud their decision. That shows you they are taking care of business. That is the way it should be, and no one should hold that against them. Instead of engaging in a futile diplomatic uneasiness with them, we need to learn from them how to structure and organize our system. If your government does not care about who enters your country, do not expect governments from other countries to have the same attitude.

I really do not see the issue at hand that is getting some of my people to go ballistic. Some of us act as though the Dominicans owe us something. No, they do not. That is their country, and it is their prerogative to enact whatever policy deemed necessary to protect their territory for whatever reason. You can call the policy discriminatory however you want, that’s your business. But that is their country; therefore, they have to do what they have to do to protect their territory from whomever and whatever.

You don’t have to travel there. Don’t you have your own country? Okay, then. Stay in your country and place restrictions on foreigners to enter like everybody else is doing. I have yet to see you going on a rampage because the other countries -the United States, Canada, France, etc… -ask you to submit these same documents and even more.

Stop complaining like it is the end of the world for you if you do not travel to the Dominican Republic to be humiliated and mistreated for the most part. When a seller makes it so hard on you to purchase their products, in a free market economy, what do you do? You take your money some place else or make the products for your own consumption, don’t you? Okay, then. You do not go ballistic because they do not want to sell their products to you. Some of you make me sick making an issue out of a nonissue. Stop acting like the Dominican Republic is indispensable to you.

My Position On The Publication Of The Amended Version Of The 1987 Constitution

Per Lucien Jura, the spokesperson for the Office of the President, President Martelly will publish this month in the Moniteur, the country’s official newspaper, the highly contested and controversial amended version of the 1987 Constitution.

Public opinion is split on whether the president should publish it or not. As it can be noticed, I refrain from positioning myself on that simply because I am clueless in terms of its content. I hope the president is well advised and, if he decides to publish it, knows exactly what he is getting himself into.

The question I and others are asking ourselves is, why is it that a document of such magnitude and importance is not being made available to the public online and other venues for everyone to access it and have a political position on it in terms of its publication? By not doing so, the president and his close and trusted advisers are giving the impression that there are things in there they are hiding and do not want the general public to know about. They need to keep in mind that in politics, impression or perception is reality. So they do need to be very careful in their approach.

Because I refuse to extrapolate or do the Haitian “voye monte,” I choose not to have a political position in terms of whether the amended version of the 1987 Constitution should be published or not as the President is poised to do some time this month. Also, because it has been kept with such a top secrecy, my instinct tells me there are things in there the authorities do not wish to be known by the general public. So for those two reasons, I do not back up the idea of publishing it without it being placed under the microscopic lens of the people. If in spite of all the opposing counsels from high profile and respected constitutional analysts in the caliber of Gerard Gourgue, Georges Michel and others, President Martelly decides to publish the document, whether the consequences of such action are politically positive or negative for his presidency and the country as a whole, he must keep in mind that he will be held accountable.