Archive for September, 2013

September 27, 2013

Palauan Money and its Bali-w

Words from Orakidorm

By Stevenson Kuartei

In recent months the discussion around Palauan money has inundated forums all over the land including the crevices of gossips, coffee brothels, huts of generosities, whispers of bulkolks and Internet latrines. And the discussions have revolved around who shall serve as the Czar of Palauan Money Treasury who will decide what are “real” Palauan monies and what are not or “Bali” and what is the value assigned to them. And who will or shall appoint this Czar. 

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September 27, 2013

Globalization And The Palauan Culture

By Jackson M. Henry —-

The wind of change blowing over Palau intensifies and accelerates incessantly. The wind is called Globalization and it refers to the movement toward a homogenous, westernized and consumer culture that knows no national boundaries. International trade is the very heart of globalization but it has become a divisive topic among political activists and policy makers today because they say it has the power to destroy cultures worldwide.

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September 26, 2013

DUI

By Gaafar J. Uherbelau —-

There was a thread on facebook recently talking about how we could limit the number of injuries and deaths caused by alcohol use in Palau. Some respondents went so far as to suggest that we completely ban the importation of alcohol products. Others wanted to intensify fines and sentences of alcohol related offences to deter further use of alcohol. Although these are great ideas, I think it would be impossible for them to be effective unless we put enough research and resources behind them.

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September 25, 2013

9th KSG, Budget and Priorities

Tia Belau Editorial, September 23, 2013 —- 

Koror State voters, once again, are going to the ballot box on November 12 to elect their governor and members of the 17-seat legislature.

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September 24, 2013

Palau Tourism Beautification Fund

By Jackson M. Henry —-

It is no rocket science that beauty attracts and beautiful destinations attract visitors. For this reason, city managers and destination promoters invest in beautification programs to create their unique “signature” as means to draw visitors. Research has proven that direct correlation do exists between a destination’s beauty and the volume of their visitor arrival and return rates, according to Sue Templeton of Brand Mgt. Hence, investing in the beautification of a destination pays back big dividends.

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September 22, 2013

Standing at the corridor- “Mededechor era ilasngesungel”

 

Words from Orakidorm

By Stevenson Kuartei

I am on my way to the hospital. Why are you asking? No, I need to go and get my medicine to shut you up because you are getting very loud and annoying. Because of you are talking to me all the time, I find myself standing by Topside Bangladeshi Store, by Franco’s or by Yano’s Market and sometimes by the Penthouse Hotel listening and talking to you. Sometimes I sit by Topside Minimart or NECO Plaza and sometimes just wondering around Ben Franklin. And then I wonder if these ‘normal’ people notice me being there. I am sure they do because some of them are quite mean in what they say. What? Hey! Be quiet and stop talking to me because I am trying figure out what to say to my Unco. I am trying to tell my story. I know! I know I have a million dollar in the United States treasury, which President Reagan gave me. I just need to convince these ‘normal’ people to send me there so that I can talk to the head of FBI regarding my money.

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September 21, 2013

Berrotel El Udoud (Underground Economy)

By Santy Asanuma —-

A Bali a sebechel tomelii a klau el tekoi (counterfeit Palauan money will cause serious problems). Money will put people into a fierce confrontation (klautok). As one Bangladeshi friend of mine in our recent conversation, forewarned that he is not surprised if some of them will be hurt or killed because of greed and cheating among themselves. He said that they combine their money to open a store. But when money starts coming in the one running the store does not want to share the profits anymore. This is where lies and cheating reach boiling point. This is the universal evil that even during biblical times it was forebode (mildung). Money that are not earned in the right way tends to be underground (berrotel er tirkel kirir el mo medengei).

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September 19, 2013

“BH”

By Gaafar J. Uherbelau —-

A couple of days ago I had a really interesting conversation with some colleagues as they interviewed me about my thoughts on the stigmas associated with mental health issues.  As part of their class work they were noting ideas on how we can minimize these stigmas that are common in Palau.

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September 19, 2013

The Seven Types of Kelulau

Tia Belau Editorial, September 16, 2013 —-

Kelulau refers to important secret or sensitive political matters.

The legend of kelulau er Belau is an unusual one. It tells how the Kelulau of Palau was obtained from the snake of Angaur (Bersoech er Ngeaur). This legend is an illustration of how the kelulau came to be; it is not an explanation of its actual nature and function. The legendary derivation of the kelulau of Palau from a snake is because a snake is long and has but one head and one tail. By comparison, the kelulau of Palau is well maintained and systemized from its head down to its tail in each beluu of Palau. Kelulau arranged and established the kebekuul and teleuechel titles, made them sacred, and empowered then as well. Kelulau installed them as klobaks of the various beluu of Palau and entrusted with aspects of kelulau to enable them to preserve Palau.

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September 17, 2013

Syria

By Jackson M. Henry

Last week, not a day went by in Palau without Syria stealing the top spot in the world news headlines. Many were bewildered at the horrific scenes on CNN of the children in the town of Zamalka being killed or gassed by chemical weapons. Palau is now following up on this fast developing international incident that could mark a turning point in Middle East’s political history.

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September 16, 2013

Public Policy- Regulating Individual Choices

Words from Orakidorm

By Stevenson Kuartei

 Radio Australia couple days ago reported that a South African man was facing deportation from New Zealand for being too fat. His name is ‘Too Fat’ Chef Albert Buitenhuis. He was given a 23-month reprieve to stay in New Zealand but he was told that he “will have to meet any health costs himself” if he gets ill. During the same news broadcast by Radio Australia, the Governor of Port Moresby in Papua New Guinea has put out a decree to outlaw chewing of betelnut in the whole city except for a few identified places.  When the Ministry of Health was declared a “chew free zone”, there was a public outcry when in reality there was already an existing law that prohibits chewing of betelnut and smoking in government offices. A well-educated gentleman once made the following statement, “people should be left alone to make individual choices without the government regulating things such as tobacco use”.

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September 15, 2013

Bai De Bo De Chelsechusem Er Rokui (The Fear of Unshared Blame)

By Santy Asanuma —-

My American friend has coined this phrase to describe us Palauans on how we have fumbled greatly in the ways we are handling our life affairs in modern history of Palau. According to his observation, he sees that Palauans in general cannot do anything right today unlike our ancestors because we fear taking a stand on any issue in the first place for fear of getting blamed for whatever consequences, especially ones that are considered negative or too aggressive; therefore, are not supported by others. This has made us passive (ke diolengeng e diak dokerang) people in light of many rising social problems like crimes, violence, suicide, drop-out, alcohol/drug abuse, pre-teen and teen pregnancies, exorbitant (mla mokeiyangel) customary practices, and breaking up of family or clan solidarity (cheldelel telungalek ma kebliil) to name a few that are mounting around us in all our communities today.

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September 14, 2013

Palauan Way?

By Fuana Tmarsel —-

Recently I asked a couple of relatives to help me move earth for a fee. One flat out told me “no”,  while the other said, “ oh sure, not a problem, just holler when it’s time.” Well, I rang, then I begged and hollered to no avail.  I was okay with one who refused, but it took me awhile to get over the one who agreed to help, but never showed up. In fact it bothered me for some time, but seeing that I was gaining nothing out of it, decided to move on. Once I decided to forgive him, he came and began talking to me – of course not about helping me out. In a way I am relieved because now that he knows he did not live up to his end of the bargain, he does not come around saying   “me tara chens.” His failure to live up to his word, precludes him from asking for chens. And honestly, that brings me little relief.

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September 13, 2013

Cooperation, Compromise, and Budget

Tia Belau Editorial, September 12, 2013 —-  

Anyone, who was ever alive in previous years, knows that budget battles have long taken center stage in our daily conversations. It assumed the form of our national pastime. The talk of baseball, fishing, and other popular Palauan happenings became boring subjects.

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September 12, 2013

Feelingeled

By Gaafar J. Uherbelau —-

Sometimes I wonder what life was like in pre-colonial Palau when traditional laws and social structures were unadulterated and life was supposedly less stressful.  I wonder how each klobak effectively addressed problems and issues within their respective communities.

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September 12, 2013

Manifestation Of A Dream

By Jackson M. Henry —-

Amazing how time flies. On the 29th of August, one of Palau’s iconic landmark tourist establishment celebrated its 15th year in business and being,– in the words of President Remengasau–, “a good corporate citizen”. I am referring to none other than the Palasia Hotel whose 15th anniversary marks another key milestone in Palau’s tourism history.

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September 12, 2013

The Journey to Me, Myself and I- What about Yous?

Words from Orakidorm

By Dr. Stevenson Kuartei, MD —-

The foundation of Palauan society was created based on the sense of “pluralism” which means whatever was better for the community, or for the clan or for the family outweighed what was good for individual members. Thus there were no individual land ownership, our governance was by consensus and even marriages were arranged regardless of individual feelings. According to an article by Father Hezel titled, “The Cult of the Individual”, even “personal responsibility and strong individual positions were de-emphasized in traditional island societies that depended so much on harmonious community interactions.” However, through out the years, what was seen as passiveness or charming island spirit, or warm hospitality was exploited by foreigners who mistook this “communal spirit” as lack of individual initiatives. Sadly, this is still happening today.

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September 8, 2013

Ngemedechad (Palauans Becoming Endangered Species)

By Santy Asanuma —-

Genocide is the killing of one group of people by another group of people and is probably the most evil and monstrous crime against humanity. But the weakening and wiping out of Palauans is not caused by some militia rebels of different people attacking Palauans. Ngemedechad literally means disappearing people which is used to refer to lineages or clans that by many reasons including not reproducing enough people have only few surviving members or have totally been wiped out. I would venture though to expand my observation in the economic realm and social fiber where Palauans are losing out…sort of weakening into extinction (riiedang e dikea luut er tir).

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September 8, 2013

Bridge Over Troubled Water

By Fuana Tmarsel —-

If you are over forty-five, you should be able to remember Simon & Garfunkel’s hit released in 1970; from which comes the title of this piece.  If you are younger, no sweat – let your fingertips do the work – download it from You Tube and enjoy something different from your usual sound. It was one of my favorite songs during my growing up years, though I had never really analyzed the lyrics until recently.

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September 8, 2013

Mererekos

By Gaafar J. Uherbelau —-

I’m sure you’ve heard over and over about the 3 Ms (melaok, merkos, mecherocher) and how they’re bad for you in the long run. And although many of us are physically active or try to “exercise”, we tend to neglect to watch what and how much we are eating.

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