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Nassau, Bahamas - Ten
months ago, AML Foods Limited introduced Bahamians and the residents of
western New Providence to a one of a kind, world class grocery store,
Solomon's Fresh Market. Now, the Company is gearing up to open another
location in the Harbour Bay Shopping Plaza, in December ofthis year.
customers have embraced the Solomon's Fresh Market concept", says Gavin
Watchorn, President and CEO, of AML Foods Limited. "From the moment
that we opened our doors we received numerous requests from residents in
the east to open a store closer to home. Bahamians...
"Politics changes when people can't pay for their home mortgages and can't afford medical care and can't send their kids to school....It is such a humiliating blow to be the head of a family and be unable to work and provide, that people don't respond entirely rationally all the time. It can explode in politics in a hard-to-understand way."
This was the view of former U.S. Vice President Walter Mondale, a veteran politician and observer of politics and the vagaries and vicissitudes of political fortune. That economic distress is typically decisive in deciding the outcome of an election becomes even more so in periods of greater economic turmoil.
In a 2009 column Front Porch noted: "While the adage, 'It's the economy, stupid!' was popularized by Bill Clinton during his successful bid for the U.S. presidency in 1992, a country's economic situation is typically a central election issue, even more so during economic crises.
"No less a figure than British Prime Minister Winston Churchill learned this lesson following the humiliating defeat of his Conservative Party soon after it led an all-party coalition government that secured victory for Great Britain in World War II.
"It was Britain's first general election since 1935, elections having been suspended until there was an Allied victory in the war. Held just months following Victory in Europe Day (VE Day), the 1945 election saw a return to normal party politics.
"Months before the election, Churchill's approval rating stood at 83 percent with the Labour Party given poor odds for victory. After the opinion polls gave way to the election poll, the Conservatives lost nearly half of its members in Parliament...." While voters appreciated Churchill getting them through the war, they turned to Labour during a period of continued rationing and great economic anxiety.
After an election, the winning side is lauded for its brilliance while the losing side is derided for its missteps. The reality is typically more mixed.
Campaigns make a difference. But public relations alone rarely win elections, especially in light of the daily lived reality of voters and long-held perceptions.
Moreover, with the size of our electorate and the small number of voters per constituency, margins make a difference, especially in the last two elections where neither of the major parties has garnered 50 percent of the popular vote.
The role of the DNA, the personas of Perry Christie and Hubert Ingraham, crime, the influence of money, campaign and communications strategies, mistakes made by the incumbent administration, among others, all made a difference individually and collectively in terms of the number of seats won by the PLP and the FNM. Still, the underlying factor was the economy.
The Ingraham administration did not buck the global trend. In France, Nicolas Sarkozy became the first French President in 30 years to lose re-election. In Jamaica, the fresh and youthful face of Jamaican Labour Party Leader Andrew Holness was not enough to help the JLP retain office after one term.
During that term, the JLP concluded a historic debt agreement with the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and cut violent crime nearly in half, an extraordinary accomplishment that won universal praise within and outside of Jamaica. Yet, Portia Simpson Miller, the veteran politician and leader of the People's National Party, returned to office riding the wave of economic distress and anxiety.
In Belize, Prime Minister Dean Barrow and his United Democratic Party (UDP) barely bucked the trend, almost losing to the People's United Party (PUP). Barrow called an early election to take advantage of deep divisions and a leadership vacuum within a PUP still tainted by the scandals and corruption associated with the administrations of former PUP Leader and Prime Minister Said Musa.
On the eve of the general election, two of the PUP's stars, one a possible future leader, declined to run sending the party into turmoil. One of the PUP's candidates was disqualified from running for the lower House because she held dual citizenship. And yet, Barrow held onto office with a mere three-seat margin reduced from a sizeable majority.
President Barack Obama is also at risk, ever more so if U.S. economic recovery slows, jobs are added at a slower rate than expected, along with other factors such as higher gas and home heating oil prices this coming winter.
When he was defeated in 2007 with less than 50 percent of the vote, then outgoing Prime Minister Perry Christie claimed that the FNM did not have a mandate to govern. Clearly that was political boilerplate meant to appease his supporters.
While the PLP enjoys a landslide of seats but not of the popular vote, Christie and his party have a mandate to govern. Christie knows, following his 2002 victory and 2007 defeat, that a landslide can easily turn into a slippery slope. Having failed to win the popular vote in 2012 he is even more cognizant of how the numbers can easily turn around.
But it would be churlish of FNMs or those who did not vote for the PLP to wish for the failure of the Christie administration. The country needs him to succeed especially in the areas of the economy, jobs and crime. Only the most irresponsible would have no problem erecting billboards at highly trafficked areas advertising the number of murders on what is now the PLP's watch.
Because of the nature of the times, the PLP will enjoy a brief honeymoon, and its "window of opportunity" to blame the FNM and Hubert Ingraham will be just as brief. The performance and political problem for Christie is the high level of expectations which he raised dramatically during the campaign.
Fulfilling high expectations during normal times is a difficult balancing act. During unprecedented times it is like juggling a myriad of objects which keep growing in number while navigating a high wire, backwards, with no net and partially blindfolded.
While the PLP has a mandate to govern, it does not have a license to give vent to the endless settling of scores, victimizing opponents, the cavalier cancelling of contracts, and other mindsets and actions which can quickly erode the support of voters who are decidedly in the mood for getting on with the people's business.
This is especially true of younger voters who are not as aligned to any of the major parties as their parents and grandparents. In many ways this is a new day in Bahamian politics. Those politicians who fail to understand this will learn the old fashioned way, i.e., at the ballot box.
Christie has been given the proverbial rare second chance in political life. How well he uses or squanders this opportunity will determine his legacy, and more importantly, the good of the nation.
Next week: The First 100 Days. In the weeks to follow: the Ingraham Legacy and the Christie Opportunity.
Graycliff restaurant is known for its five-star fine-dining experience, its award-winning cellar, and for its Humidor Churrascaria that serves up Brazilian Rodizio with a Bahamian flair in a South American steakhouse setting, but now its owners are expanding their repertoire to include Giotto, a pizzeria that will serve authentic Italian pizzas just like you would expect to find in Naples, Italy.
All pizzas are made with authentic "OO" Italian pizza flour, and cooked in 90 seconds at 900 degrees in their organic wood-fired brick oven. There is pizza and there is pizza, but Graycliff says they are serving real pizza, with real ingredients, all of which they say have been imported from Italy.
"I just wanted to have something different, and to bring some kind of Italian culture to Nassau," said Graycliff proprietor Enrico Garzaroli of his pizzeria which is located inside the Humidor Churrascarria.
"I brought in a low fermentation flour from Italy; I brought in anchovies, tuna, everything from Italy so that people can experience real pizza. It is like art. People will get probably the best pizza they can get in town, with a different look altogether."
There is also a variety to be had from the normal toppings for their 12-inch, thin crust pizzas. There signature offerings include a scampi tropical with shrimp; fresh mango; green, yellow and red peppers; Vidalia onions; Italian diced tomatoes and Italian mozzarella. The tonno pizza is a white pizza with seared ahi tuna, onions, artichokes, Italian diced tomatoes, gaeta Italian olives and Italian mozzarella. The meat lover's is topped with certified Angus beef, Italian sausage, Italian dried salamino, Italian mozzarella and San Marzano tomato sauce.
La Siciliana is of course classic with capers, anchovies, black olives, oregano, red onions, Italian mozzarella and San Marzano tomato sauce. And the authentic Margarita Napolentana is made with San Marzano tomato sauce, Italian Mozzarella and fresh basil.
The Pizza Americana is topped with pepperoni, Italian mozzarella, mushrooms, pepperoncino and San Marzano tomato sauce. The Pizza prosciutto cotto e crudo is topped with Parma prosciutto crudo and cotto hams, Italian mozzarella, arugula and San Marzano tomato sauce.
For the adventurous eater, there is the pizza patata e porcini with truffle oil, which is a white pizza with sliced potatoes, porcini mushrooms, rosemary, truffles in oil and Italian mozzarella.
And just in case there isn't a signature to suit your taste and you can personalize a pizza with toppings that include mushrooms; green, red or yellow peppers; salami; pepperoni sausage; anchovy fillets; a selection of olives; Vidalia onions; Italian sausage; sliced Wuerstel (a Viennese sausage); arugula; chicken breast; goat cheese and double Italian mozzarella.
And for even more decadent toppings there are lobster chunks, shrimp, Spanish chorizo, Jamon Serrano Spanish ham, Italian Parmacotto ham, Italian Parma reserve prosciutto crudo and buffalo mozzarella.
Giotto's menu also features a calzone classico with prosciutto ham, mushrooms, Italian mozzarella and San Marzano tomato sauce. Three types of focaccia are also on the menu -- la focaccia Italiana with rosemary, Maldon salt, extra virgin olive oil and Italian mozzarella or pate's of sundried tomatoes and hot Italian pepperoncini and Italian Mozzarella; la bruschetta Italiana with fresh basil, arugula, goat cheese, fresh vine-ripened tomatoes and extra virgin olive oil; and la focaccia inglese with fresh hot smoked salmon, capers, red onions, arugula, crème fraiche and brie cheese.
Panini lovers will of course go for the Panini di carne, skirt steak with figs and Italian mozzarella; the Panini de agnello with lamb leg with garlic, caramelized red onions and Italian mozzarella; or the Panini gustos with Italian sausages, roasted red peppers and gorgonzola cheese, and of course there is a Panini
di pollo with chicken breast and spinach with brie cheese, red onions, Italian diced tomatoes and Italian mozzarella.
With all the meat floating around, vegetarians will delight in the Stromboli vegetarian wrap filled with mushrooms, green and red peppers, onions, spinach and low fat mozzarella.
And no meal is ever complete without a sweet ending, and a meal at a pizzeria should of course not be left out. Giotto offers pizza dolce dessert with Nutella hazelnut cream and walnuts for the perfect finish.
Prices range from $10 to $24 and Garzaroli said he intentionally made the pizzeria offerings affordable so that people can taste what authentic pizza should taste like. But at the same time he refused to sacrifice quality, as he imported all of his products from Italy.
"I went for quality at a very affordable price. I had to find the right oven (it's so hot and fast, Giotto can turn out six pizzas every 90 seconds), the right flour, the right mozzarella and the right pizza expert. And because there is no fermentation with the flour that we use, the pizza is very light, so at Giotto you can have 20 different slices of pizzas to try them all," said Garzaroli.
The flour that they use at Giotto is virtually gluten free to allow people with gluten allergy to enjoy Giotto's pies as well. The dough rests for 48 hours to 72 hours before it is used.
Chef Ramon Rodriguez who has been making authentic Italian pizzas for more than 20 years said at Giotto he wants to bring something new to the islands which no one else offers.
"Everything is made very thin, so that people can have a taste of everything, unlike traditional pizzas in which they put too much dough and people get just full of bread," he said.
The special oven at Giotto has been treated for 10 days in preparation for the opening of its doors to the public in two weeks.
WANTED - Andros Police seeking public help locating 20 year old Hugh James Aka Slimmer/Slug of Fresh Creek
Police at Andros are requesting your assistance in locating 20 year old HUGH JAMES aka "SLIMMER/SLUG" of FRESH CREEK, ANDROS.
Hugh is described as having dark brown complexion, slim built and stands at 5'8" tall.
Police want to question this suspect reference to a stolen vessel.
with information as to the whereabouts of HUGH JAMES is asked to
contact police @ 919, 322-3333/4/5, 322-4005/6/7, Andros Police @
Back by popular demand! Hurry in to
Sawyer's Fresh Market Nassau
for Fall Savings!
Your grocery bill just got lower! satisfaction guaranteed! Shop Sawyer's for Fall Bargains & Stock up! Special Buys at
special prices. Fall specials... to show how much we appreciate our
All prices effective Thursday, October 25th to Monday, November 5th, 2012. While Supplies Last...
Freeport, Grand Bahama - Don't Miss
Star of the Sea Annual Bazaar & Grand Raffle on Saturday,
November 17th from Noon to Midnight at the Mary Star of the Sea School Grounds. Theme: "Catholic Education ROCKS"
! and dedicated to Father
Remy David. All Are Welcome.
Bahama's Greatest Fun-Time Extravaganza Children's Games, Bingo, Native
Dishes, Hamburgers/Hot Dogs, Sweets & Treats, Refreshments...
Freeport, Grand Bahama Island -
Flying Fish Modern Seafood is pleased to announce their
Waterside Happy Hour every day between 5 to 7 pm.
Enjoy 2 for $5 Sands & Sands Light; $5 Wine of the Day; and $5 Mixed
Drinks while enjoying the elegant ambiance waterside on the Port Lucaya
In addition to happy hour,
Wednesdays are OYSTER nights! Enjoy
fresh-off-the-plane Malpeque oysters, straight up with Tobasco &
lemon, or cocktail sauce...
A cave containing artifacts stretching back hundreds of years will be incorporated into Baha Mar's new 18-hole Jack Nicklaus Signature Golf Course.
The historic site, discovered years ago when the $2.6 billion development performed a survey of the land, rests near Lake Cunningham on the resort property. After some extensive investigations, the items in the cave have been catalogued and date back to the pre-Columbus era.
According to Laura Pinder, the environmental monitor for Baha Mar, the site will be made a "point of interest" on the golf course.
"It will be part of the golf course experience," she explained. "We'll develop interpretative materials and signage. As you walk the trail of the golf course, you'll see the signs. They'll be a buffer between the cave and the course. But it will explain the history of the cave, and what is interesting about it and how it relates to the culture of The Bahamas."
The attraction is sure to make the Jack Nicklaus course one of the more unusual golf experiences in the world.
The cave is reportedly home to fragments of tools, pottery and bone.
"We'll preserve it and ensure it's not ruined," she said. "And it becomes a feature of the golf course."
Pinder insisted, however, that guests will not be permitted inside the cave. She noted it is currently home to a colony of fruit bats, further reinforcing the importance of working around the historically significant site.
The environmental officer for Baha Mar told Guardian Business a more in-depth survey was done recently, and a team was enlisted to make note of the treasures that lie within.
Maintaining the environment has been a particular concern for the Cable Beach project since the beginning, according to executives.
Back in September of last year, Gary Larson, the director of environmental affairs, announced that Baha Mar would contribute $2 million to the creation of a wildlife reserve.
The resort back outs onto hundreds of acres of untouched wilderness and wetlands.
"When I came on board here, I was very pleased to see the company's attitude towards the environment," Larson said, who served as executive director of the Bahamas National Trust for 20 years. "It's refreshing to see them not just saying so, but doing so. Often you have to beat people over the head with environment issues. But the philosophy comes from the head."
Robert Sands, the senior vice president of administrative and external affairs, told Guardian Business that the golf course actually had to be redrawn to incorporate the reserve.
Of the 1,000 acres included under the Baha Mar banner, approximately half will be considered part of this protective ecosystem.
The vision is to create opportunities for bird watching, walking jogging and enjoying the indigenous species.
Baha Mar has considered incorporating eco-tourism into its menu of offerings once the resort is up and running at the end of 2014.
The Police Staff Association (PSA) may be poised for a new election after several of its executive members were promoted.
According to the Royal Bahamas Police Staff Association Act, a police officer ceases being a PSA board member if that officer no longer holds the rank that he or she did when elected, or if he or she is no longer a member of the force. The association held its annual election back in January, however seven board members received promotions over the last week.
PSA Chairman Dwight Smith was promoted from the rank of sergeant to inspector last week. According to him, this creates a unique problem for the association, which must decide if it has to call fresh elections, and when, in light of the promotions. He said the laws which govern the association state that he cannot demit office until there is an election.
Smith noted that while some on the force are calling for him to quickly vacate office, he said he will not give into the "selfish" desires of a few and leave the organization vulnerable.
"These were persons who wanted to get into the association and did not get in by way of election. They are not just going to jump in here," he said yesterday. "I just can't demit office because some are saying 'you have to leave immediately'. Who do I hand over to? I sit as the chairman on some international boards, you have to properly hand that over. I cannot be distracted by those small-minded people who are only looking out for their interests."
He said the association is also in consultation with its legal team on the issue.
Smith added that the PSA is also in the process of drafting new by-laws to address what he sees as deficiencies in the rules that govern the organization.
"There is nothing in writing; I have to make sure I put these things in writing in our by-laws. Then I have to forward that to the commissioner of police and then to the minister of national security, so that they can be in our laws. There is always a process," Smith said.
In addition to Smith, four constables were promoted to the rank of corporal, and two corporals were promoted to the rank of sergeant, during the last round of promotions in the Royal Bahamas Police Force.
In January, Smith was re-elected as the PSA's chairman.
Last week the RBPF announced the promotions of 106 senior policemen. The news came a few days after it was revealed that 206 officers also moved up the force's ranks.
The official opening of the Bahamas Football Association's (BFA) beach facility in November was much more than an advancement of the sport here in The Bahamas. Several Caribbean influential soccer voices, in the presence of representatives of the Football Internationale de Football Association (FIFA), Bahamian dignitaries and an appreciative crowd, lauded the occasion and the indication was clear.