Could secret investment be island’s paradise found?
I was reading through one of my Bermuda books, Paradise found, almost! by Vernon Jackson. This is a book based on his letters to the editor and other articles he wrote for the Mid-Ocean News and The Royal Gazette. It is one of the Bermuda books that should be compulsory reading in all of the schools. Mr Jackson tells it as it is.
However, I am digressing because in one of his letters dated March 13, 1984, titled “Increasing Bermuda’s Land Area”, he made the comment “recently our finance minister, the Hon David Gibbons, made public a plan to invest in US bonds the sum of $8 million (out of a surplus of $13 million) for redemption in the year 2012, thereby creating a fund of $200 million for future use”. First of all, Sir, I wonder whether this transaction ever took place. The second point is that in 1984 there was a surplus of $13 million and by 2012 the Progressive Labour Party managed to get Bermuda into $2 billion dollars of debt. And here we are now in 2016, where the cost is in excess of $280 per month for every man, woman and child in Bermuda. Everyone is screaming for money for all government departments — police, fire service, seniors wanting more money, but if it isn’t there, it cannot be spent. It will be another ten to 15 years before we can resolve our problems, but another 50 to 100 years, if ever, should the PLP become the government.