By  EWALT AINSWORTH             11 18 2012

The same week the emergency-care-barrels were uprooted from the basements on the East Coast destined for Gt,  is the same time hurricane Sandy come and up-stage entire swaths of homes and apartments without discrimination in the diaspora.  A lot of canaries and soup bowls will be untouched by hand and twice as many empty chairs will be unfilled while families huddle in dank quarters and rude ATM machines lay dormant.  The prognosis is bleak at this time.                          

The commercial sector is begging folks to come-by-ya and enticing ethnic enclaves with swanky  commercials like…buy a mini-van and get a turkey free.  Buy a  CAMRY …19.00 down and 339.00 a month.  Wait wait  wait…pay a dollar more and get a second   CAMRY at no extra cost.  One hundred and fifty million families are expected to forget their woes and line up…have already started to line up and stock up on the door busters and cheapy-squeaky deals while there is still sufferation in the land three weeks after a squall of magnanimous proportions.

At the corner of South Harrison and Central Avenues in the Oranges…another sign reads…GOING OUT FOR BUSINESS.  Scores have been entrapped and many are being screwed over the black Friday pampazetting.

WALMART… the biggest employer in America has trouble on its hands…, the employees up and down the East Coast feel screwed  and  are planning a massive protest at all stores come  black Friday…snow, rain or sleet.  The employees cannot afford the bargains because of the prohibitive prices as capitalism takes a nose dive.  Another massive employer…HOSTESS CAKE/TWINKIES/WONDER BREAD….shuttered its doors and screwed the workers over.  The next few weeks before inauguration of President Obama after re-election will be difficult.  Family and friends back in the yard will have to bite the bullet (literally) and plant their own lil-kitchen garden and feel fuh hassar and curass in the side line trench until the situation right sides itself.

There is no poultice or polite way of saying that global economies are screwed;  it is not a permanent condition but will call for creative measures to un-screw and upturn the vulnerabilities that are encroaching on civil societies.  In other sectors of the economy pilots are in short supply, blackouts are a permanent feature, depression is affecting normally good people, crime is on the rise and con artists are screwing the old, young and not so smooth operators.  Drug use is also on the increase and some politicians are still reeling from the last landslide victory by President Obama.  The era of the white-man rule is over according to prominent politician Pat Buchannan.

And  Guyanese and other Caribbean nationals will have to bring out their rolling pins or use a rum bottle and mek  i-tal and bus-up-shirt.  Shine rice and oil down with a portion of bhoop-and-roll (breadfruit) can save the day this Thanksgiving.  The average price of a gobble-bobble is 38.00.  Last year a turkey was 21.00.  Food prices in Brooklyn and Baltimore are going thru the roof.  A 20 pound bag of shrimp-rice in Toronto is CDN 6.99.  The same bag in Strawfus is USD 18.99.  Petrol in New York averages 3,79…Toronto is 5.12.  Plantains in the Asian markets in Canada are four for a dollar and in Brooklyn in it is five for 2.00.    Just to give you a flavor of the marketplace.  We are screwing ourselves over by charging more and delivering less and so the Asian communities see an opportunity that is leaving Guyanese and Caribbean folks both broke and breathless.

FEMA…the Federal Emergency Management Agency had cut the first checks of US 1,700.00…our folks claim that that money was barely enough to cover  shipping of one barrel to GT or St  Lucy.  FEMA had to rewind and come again and this time give each affected homeowner US 33,000.00.  They still make a bacchanal and gazbar and say how they have been scewed over.  Some are even citing the Obama election machine for screwing them well and this caused the President to make another whistle stop in the area before departing to South East-Asia.  We ent easy.

This week is Thanksgiving and West Indians not checking.  Guyanese too have put down their names to work on Thanksgiving, Christmas day, Boxing Day but New Years eve…the job can go to France.  West Indians do not sign up for New Years so that they can take care of their business.  Black Friday too, they coming out from 8.00 pm to catch the  sales and refill the barrels.  The families may not get the barrels for Christmas but surely for the New Year and Carnival and Mashramani all the mark-ups and mark-downs will be enroute.

An Indo-Guyanese confided in this writer that “black-Friday sales is the best; I does line up from midnite and as soon as the door bust open at 4.00 am…I do be there.”  This year he does not have to line up; scores of big-box stores are opening up from 8.00 pm from the even of Black Friday.

Some have already begun to moan and groan that “the holiday is not we own; name a Thanksgiving song…tell me one eh?”

Some others too who have jobs with places like WALMART start raising some serious concerns about trends in the Diaspora.  Jobs are no longer employing full time staff so as to thwart the OBACMACARE plan.  Employers are only giving folks 29 hours of work.  The deduction for health insurance is more than that.  Workers have to convert their lunch break into a sleep break because they cannot afford to munch on the fresh vegetables and sandwiches and pizzas the stores are selling.  In addition too, restaurants are adding 2% of the tab to cover  OBAMACARE.

This flood…this surge…this storm, is a blessing in disguise.  A year ago, it was a rule of thumb that families can fill a barrel from one paycheck.  And if you cannot pay your mortgage/rent from one paycheck, you will never be able to do it.  And your car too…if you cannot do it from one paycheck, you will never be able to pay it.

Gasoline/petrol was available at some stations for as much as US 6.08 cents per gallon.  Three weeks after the surge, the buses and trains are offering limited services.   PAC-A-LIGHTHOUSE a patriotic soul from GT has a courier business.  His 2011 earnings were in excess of US 70,000.00.  For black Friday shopping he had to take a pay-day-loan of US 1,500.00.  He would soon realize that he would have to pay in excess of 700% interest on that loan.  He has about 30 weeks to repay.

The stories of hardships and sacrifices are overwhelming; 30,000 Guyanese stand to lose their airfares from EZ-JET.  Somebody has about US 200,000.00 sitting in their trunk.  This is a dangerous trend and bend.  The PPP has been playing a double game and playing with people’s lives.  Guyanese are no longer dispensing jumbie-lashes.  At high noon they shooting and killing each other.  But that is another matter for a different arena.  Have a great Thanksgiving, irrespective of the outcome of the turkey.


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