Kien hemm żmien meta t-“Times of Malta” dehret li birdet mill-ħeġġa anti-Laburista tagħha li kienet mitqiesa bħala parti mid-DNA tagħha. Bdiet iżżomm aktar ’il bogħod minn qabel f’kontroversji li nqalgħu kontra l-Labour. Mhux darba jew tnejn ażżardat tkun kritika tal-PN fil-gvern.
Imbagħad, il-gazzetta mill-ġdid fetħet il-kanuni kontra l-gvern Laburista, b’appoġġ totali għall-PN fuq – ħaġa tal-iskantament – allegazzjonijiet ta’ korruzzjoni. Wieħed kellu kull raġun jiskanta b’dan. Fi żmien l-amministrazzjoni Gonzi, it-“Times” ftit kienet turi interess f’każi hekk.
Mill-aħħar elezzjoni lil hawn, waqt li baqgħet ħerqana kontra l-Labour, il-gazzetta ħarġet ukoll kontra it-tmexxija ġdida tal-PN u donnha qed tiffavorixxi l-klikka telliefa. Diffiċli tifhem kif u għaliex dan qed jiġri. Wieħed jibqa’ bl-impressjoni li t-“Times” tilfet il-boxxla ta’ fejn trid tmur.
Nemmen li dan beda qed jiġri minn mindu nqala’ l-każ tal-eks direttur maniġerjali tat-Times Hillman. Il-gazzetta għadha ma rkupratx minn dik id-daqqa. Sal-lum baqgħet ma tat l-ebda informazzjoni dwar x’inqala’ fil-każ u x’effett kellu fuq l-operat tagħha. Fl-istess ħin, tibqa’ tinsisti għal trasparenza minn ħaddieħor.
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EWROPA SOĊJALI
Fl-Isvezja, b’mod simboliku naħseb, ġie ffirmat id-dokument dwar il-pilastru soċjali fl-Unjoni Ewropea. Fih tniżżlu dawk il-prinċipji u obbligi li l-Unjoni Ewropea tqis – jew tgħid li tqis – bħala li jiddefinixxu l-karattru soċjali tagħha, lil hinn mill-ekonomija u l-kummerċ.
Hu dokument interessanti imma fil-verità, ftit li xejn għandu proposti ġodda. Kull ma jgħid, diġà qiegħed fit-trattati Ewropej; sempliċement iġib flimkien ħafna miżuri separati sparpaljati fit-testi ta’ liġijiet u direttivi.
Kien hemm numru ta’ deputati fil-grupp tas-soċjalisti u d-demokratiċi tal-Parlament Ewropew li fissru d-diżappunt tagħhom għal dar-riżultat. Forsi ħasbu li d-dokument seta’ jimtela bil-proposti li l-Parlament Ewropew innifsu fassal f’riżoluzzjoni li għadda aktar kmieni dis-sena dwar x’għandhom ikunu l-għanijiet soċjali tal-Unjoni. Ir-riżoluzzjoni kienet għaddiet b’maġġoranza kbira bla ma kellha xi ċans li se titwettaq malajr fir-realtà.
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KUNTRADIZZJONIJIET
Ftit ilu ktibt dwar dil-kuntradizzjoni: is-servizzi finanzjarji f’pajjiżna iddaħħlu l-aktar mill-PN, u qed ikun hu issa li qed jagħmlilhom ħsara bla qies, donnu jrid joħnoqhom.
Imma hemm kontradizzjoni oħra. Kemm Malta ilha li daħlet membru sħiħ fl-Unjoni Ewropea, wara żmien tal-bidu fejn is-settur tas-servizzi finanzjarji batta, dan irpilja. Sar il-magna ekonomika li l-aktar qed iddawwar ir-rota fil-pajjiż.
Suppost li dan ta ferħa lil kulħadd, inklużi sorsi Ewropej. Mhux hekk ġara. Is-servizzi finanzjarji ta’ Malta qed jiġu taħt attakk kontinwu speċjalment minn rappreżentanti għolja u mhumiex tal-Unjoni Ewropea. Uħud jgħidu ċar u tond li l-pajjiż qed iservi bħala magna tal-ħasil tal-flus.

English Version – Compass

For a while, the Times of Malta seemed to have cooled the anti-Labour urges which were considered part and parcel of its DNA. It kept somewhat aloof from anti-Labour controversies that would emerge. Not once or twice, it even ventured into some criticism of the PN in government.

Then the paper returned to form and once again began to open fire on the Labour government, returning to its total allegiance to the PN over surprisingly, claims of government corruption. It was understandable for one to feel puzzled by this. In the course of the Gonzi administration, it had shown scant interest in such stories.

Since the last election, while maintaining its anti-Labour stance, the paper has also been at odds with the new PN management and seems like it prefers the outgoing administration. It is difficult to understand how and why this is happening. One remains with the impression that The Times has lost its compass and cannot determine where it stands exactly.

I guess the starting point for all these developments was the problem with the Times’ ex managing director Hillman. The paper still has to get over that setback. As of now, it has never really provided any information about what the whole matter was in aid of, and the impact it had on operations. Meanwhile, it still calls on others to show full transperency.

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Social Europe

In Sweden, symbolically for sure, a document was signed about the European Union’s social pillar. It lists the principles and obligations which the EU considers – or says it considers – as defining its social character.

The document is interesting but in reality hardly carries any new proposal. All its pronouncements can already be found in the European treaties. What it does is simply bring together many different measures that you’ll find laid out in the texts of laws and directives.

A number of S & D deputies in the European Parliament have expressed their disappointment at this outcome. Perhaps they thought the document could take up the proposals which the EP itself adopted in a resolution that was passed earlier on this year regarding what should be the social objectives of the Union today. The resolution was approved with a huge majority even though there was no chance that its proposals could be implemented fast.

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Contradictions

Recently, I raised this contradiction: while the PN was largely instrumental in launching financial services in this country, it is now causing them a lot of harm, giving the impression it actually wants to see them fade out.

But there’s another contradiction. Following Malta’s accession to the EU, after an initial period of decline, the financial services sector again took off. It became the most powerful engine of economic growth.

Such a development should have been welcome to all, including our European partners. That is not what happened. Financial services in Malta have come under continuous attack, especially from EU representatives, high and low. Some say quite openly that the island is serving as a money laundering machine.