Today is Human Rights Day, treat each other extra nice.
And talking about treating each other nicely.
I asked a few of my friends the following
Q: Why do you think did the Dutch let the AVP government go on spending for 8 years, as it pleased, and is now cracking down so hard on the MEP government, enforcing an unrealistic recovery plan, that perhaps Aruba cannot meet?!
A: I think they have been pretty lenient with MEP – they cracked down on AVP much harder. But AVP managed to duck and finagle. The crux of the issue is the cutting back of GOA’s personnel, which no party wants to touch, they are afraid of reduce staffers. And unless cost is slashed, they will never be able to balance the budget.
A: I don’t know.
A: The former MinPres made so many promises to the Dutch that he did not keep — to everyone in fact — now the Dutch don’t believe GOA anymore. Right or wrong that is how it is, and the former MinPres is to blame.
A: New men are in charge now, harder, more no nonsense, more PR savvy, they are losing patience, I suspect that the current MinPres always promised in backchannels that she would be tough, but it is hard to deliver on that promise. GOA only raised taxes, and did not cut personnel expenditure. One year later and fundamentally NOTHING CHANGED. Time is running out.
A: They raised taxes, and I hear the MinInfra is making noises about wanting to further raise the Environmental Levy by 1.5% – To date we do not know what they do with the money, for sure not spending it on the environment – the hotels cannot be burdened any further, with any taxes, or tipping fees. Enough. Cut back on wasteful ill-run GOA institutions.
A: They were told to streamline AruParking and get rid of ARUBUS, that’s huge savings, the buses run empty anyway, let the private sector take transportation over, with more efficient mini-buses. They can also get rid of some redundant government departments, let the garages certify cars for road worthiness and shut that technical department down.
A: They cracked down on AVP too. Remember ENSURE? They will go harder and harder by the year. And if we don’t act, they will step in. The trend of hiring people continues unchecked, and MEP has added to the payroll. At a certain point they will have enough. It’s only logical. The former MinPres was maybe smarter and had his cronies in the Netherlands. He perhaps had more friends in high places than the current MinPres.
So, you see people don’t always answer questions, but they give pretty good answers.