Archive for January, 2010

January 29, 2010

Haiti

By Jackson Henry

This nation is known not only as the poorest in the western hemisphere, but also a “revolving door” saga of coup d’etats, corruption, rebellions, brutal violence and anarchy for the past 500 years. After devastation recently by four hurricanes, the January 12, 2010 earth quake finally leveled this struggling island not only to a “failed state but in a state of chaos”. No wonder why evangelist Pat Robertson calls Haiti a “cursed nation”.

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January 27, 2010

Ngdideberbel Ma Tekingel (Talk Upon Arrival)

By Santy Asanuma

The Kingfisher is a bird of mishap (mdikik malechub e ng metemall) in Palauan observation. The full saying goes like this, “ng ko ra Tangadidik el di deberbel ma tekingel” (like the Kingfisher who speaks as it lands on a branch). This proverb discourages people from speaking their mind when they first join in a discussion. Palauan wisdom is keen from past experience that a person, who does not spend time to see who is in the group and how they are connected and what is the nature of their discussion, tend to put his foot in his mouth by saying something. This is a crucial social skill to have because Palau being very small makes the likelihood of person you speak against to be related to someone in the group.

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January 25, 2010

An anniversary that was not expected

By Kambes

This week marked my first year anniversary in the news reporting business. For 52 weeks, I have always wondered what got me into this – to give up some of my precious after hours and weekends, to toil as a news writer, reporter, photographer, editor, columnist, layout, etc. and all with no compensation. My better half – a truly wonderful and most adorable woman I know – insist that I go get a brain scan.

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January 22, 2010

Palau’s silent economy

By Jackson Henry

When we talk about the main sources of Palau’s cash inflow, we immediately think of tourism and fishing. However there is low profiled but a vibrant economic sector that is not well known because of the lack of reliable statistical data available. If the speculators are correct, this sector would be Palau’s second largest source of cash inflow, only second to the $80 plus million tourism industry. I am referring to cash remittances from overseas Palauans which I call “the silent economy”. I heard from a reliable source that this sector is $20 million annually. This explains why our local economy has remained a bit buoyant, despite the negative effects of the global recession. Cash remittances also explain why Palauans are able to raise sizeable amount of cash during funerals and Ocheraols.

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January 20, 2010

Ousebus A Medob (Calling A Whale Sebus)

By Santy Asanuma

Sebus is a small fish usually found in the mangrove while whale is the biggest living creature on this planet in the deep ocean. One bears great economic significance and has captured world scale attention between those who exploit it and those who want to preserve the species while the other is literally negligible (ng diak do le cheseuar er ngii).  So by all counts there is nothing that can be compared between these two creatures. So why call the biggest creature with a name of a small fish? Palauans have a tendency to employ cunning ways to undermine (sel do ngerar ra chad malechub e ng tekoi) and trivialize (ke de ngongengetii el mo diak a ututelel) people or issues to bear no significance in the arena of discussion. I invite you to consider ethics in Palau.

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January 18, 2010

Toribiong’s first year

By Kambes Kesolei

January 15 marked the first year anniversary of Johnson Toribiong’s presidency. His first twelve months in office has been a confirmation to the voters. The strength that he projected during the campaign that he is capable of connecting between his policy decisions and the prevailing sentiment of the citizens. On the other hand, it has revealed a president who can be impulsive and hasty which has left many questioning the rationale behind various policy positions and public declarations.

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January 15, 2010

Unpublished comments

I have received many comments from various readers that are yet to be published.  This is because comments are being held in moderation until approved by the administrator. I have tried contacting those who provided the unpublished comments through the email address provided, but either their email is not registered  or they prefer to not respond. In any case, if anyone would like to contact me for unpublished comments or anything els you can do so by the website email: alekokau (at) gmail (dot) com.

January 15, 2010

Palau’s Silk Road

By Jackson Henry

One of history’s most famous routes is the 7,000 miles long Silk Road connecting China to the Roman Empire and Europe. The road obtained its name from the profitable trading of silk fabrics which started in Xi’an, China some 5,500 years ago and lasted for 3000 years. The road did not only link people but, also culture, knowledge, religion, art and technology. In essence, the Silk Road created the first “International Commodities Exchange”.

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January 13, 2010

Ak Tatach (I’m No Good)

By Santy Asanuma

I remember the late Dave Williams by this simple and almost childish, if not down right silly, saying on most application. As many of us one time or another had been caught red-handed (te mletngeiong er kau), Dave would offer to most of us, who are likely guilty for failing to do a task or simply keeping a promise, that it is not necessary to make elaborate (kemanget malechub e ng mlelolaok) explanation bordering on poor excuse. He would say that this only worsen your plight (adelekikngem) so why waste time. He offered then that the best line is just to bow your head and say, “I’m no good.” And to make sure that the point of this story is not missed Dave was not talking about naïve small children but grown up adults.

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January 11, 2010

Those without need a lift from us all

By Kambes Kesolei

Hordes of holiday parties and celebrations usually take place in the five weeks between Thanksgiving Day and the end of the year. This is a stretch that typically represents relaxation of norms where we spend more, eat and drink more, laugh more, and celebrate more than at any other time of the year.

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January 9, 2010

The Bermuda Formula

By Jackson M. Henry

Many Palauans became aware with Bermuda on June 11, 2009 when CNN and BBC broadcasted worldwide that this tiny island, along with Palau, has accepted the Uyghurs detainees from Cuba. Thus, Palau and Bermuda have something in common. However, economically speaking, Bermuda stands a universe apart from Palau. For instance, Bermuda is only 20 square miles in size but boasts the 3rd highest annual per capita income in the world at $91,477.00 per person. Palau on the other hand claims 177 square miles but its annual per capita income amounts to a meager $8,100. Bermuda’s per capita income is 50% more than the US and surpasses Palau by a whopping $83,377. Moreover, the annual GDP of Bermuda is nearly $6 billion while Palau only scores $164 million in annual GDP. While Palau haggles over taxes, green fees, budget deficits and minimum wages, Bermuda enjoys being a tax free haven. Yes indeed, Bermuda has no income tax, no corporate tax, no capital gains tax and no sales tax. Unbelievable!

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January 7, 2010

Adidil 2010 (Wishful Thinking For 2010)

By Santy Asanuma

How come I grew up thinking that life in Rio de Janeiro is more vibrant (smiich a klengar e rengii ma klebekelel) and that it deserves our admiration? I always had in the back of my mind that it would be so romantic and exhilarating (kmal el mo ungil a rengud) to visit there. But after this New Year’s Eve celebration a mudslide fell onto resort houses full of tourists killing 17 people and possibly more as rescue effort continues. Somewhere closer to home, we are wishing that our economy be thriving like that of Hong Kong. On the morning of first day of 2010, thousands of Hong Kong-nese took to the streets in demonstration to demand for full democracy and suffrage (lemeltir a re chad el sengkyo). And demand that Liu Xiao Bo be released from imprisonment in China for writing his ideas on protecting human rights.

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January 5, 2010

2010: Year of the Citizens

By Kambes Kesolei

The big hope of 2009 was that the new political class would be an antidote to the egotistical excesses that was in full display in past governments of the Republic. Such odd behavior exhibited by the previous political leaders occupied most of their time and away from focusing on workable and timely policies. It became an impediment to a unified direction for the whole country. And it was such conduct that was rejected outright by the citizens that eventually set the stage for this new group of leaders.

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January 3, 2010

REMEMBERING 2009

By Fuana Tmarsel

Let me begin by giving glory to God for the great and wonderful things He has done for us and through us, for it is in Him that we live, and move and have our being. For some the year may be memorable because some of life’s monumental events happened for them like marriage, giving birth, becoming a homeowner or even having achieved great accomplishments. Some of us perhaps look back with sorrow having missed opportunities or lost someone we held dear to our hearts to death or other adversity. Whatever it was, we can be grateful because we still have tomorrow to find new opportunities and to seek to open new doors.

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