Isir wisq diskors dwar kemm għandna qalbna tajba bħala nazzjon. Forsi li hu diskors minnu, ġenwin.

Ngħidu wkoll kemm nieħdu ħsieb lil għajrna u lil min jinsab fil-bżonn. Mhux se niċħad li dan hu minnu.

Biss li x’aktarx jonqosna hu ħsieb dwar kif l-aħjar nassiguraw li t-tjubija lejn ħaddieħor ma tkunx paraventu għal modi mgħawġa ta’ kif niddeċiedu min jieħu xiex u lil min jingħata xiex.

Il-faqar u d-dgħufija soċjali ma jseħħux b’kumbinazzjoni. Jirriżultaw minn kif titmexxa s-soċjetà, għat-tajjeb u għall-ħażin. Minn kif inqassmu r-responsabbiltajiet, kif inwettquhom u mbagħad kif nassumu r-responsabbiltà għal li nkunu għamilna jew m’għamilniex – dawn il-modi ta’ imġiba huma parti integrali mit-tjubija tagħna (jew bil-maqlub, min-nuqqas tagħha… imma m’hemm l-ebda nuqqas, għax bħala nazzjon, sew ngħidu, għandna qalbna tajba…)

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KIF TIŻGIĊĊA MIS-SANZJONIJIET

Wieħed mid-dnubiet kbar li għamel is-sid tal-Pilatus Bank u li dwaru qala’ tumakka kbira l-ewwel mill-Istati Uniti, imbagħad mill-awtoritajiet finanzjarji Ewropej, kien dan: li allegatament ħawwad fit-tmexxija tal-finanzi tiegħu biex ikun jista’ jevita s-sanzjonijiet finanzjarji tal-Istati Uniti kontra żewġ pajjiżi – tiegħu, l-Iran, u l-Veneżwela – fil-mod kif ħallsu lil xulxin għal proġetti li riedu jwettqu bejniethom.

L-Istati Uniti temmew minn rajhom il-ftehim dwar il-faċilitajeit nukleari tal-Iran. Reġgħu daħħlu s-sanzjonijiet finanzjarji fuq dal-pajjiż. L-Unjoni Ewropea tinsab fost oħrajn li qed jaraw kif ma jirrispettawx dawn is-sanzjonijiet. Saħansitra sar diskors dwar kif jistgħu jinħolqu għodod finanzjarji li bihom il-bejgħ u x-xiri li jsir bejniethom u l-Iran jgħaddu minn kanali li jiżgiċċaw is-sanzjonijiet Amerikani.

Teknikament dak li qed jiddiskutu li jagħmlu ftit hu differenti milli allegatament ipprova jagħmel il-mexxej tal-Pilatus, bla dubju fl-interess ta’ familtu li kienet imdaħħla fin-negozji mal-Veneżwela… imma żgur ukoll f’linja mal-politika tal-gvern tal-Iran.

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ELEZZJONIJIET AMERIKANI

Il-kontroversji dwar kif marru l-elezzjonijiet “mid-term” fl-Istati Uniti qed idumu biex ibattu. Min jara t-tazza nofsha mimlija, min nofs vojta.

Li hemm interessanti f’dan kollu hu kif is-sistema politika Amerikana jirnexxielha ddaħħal il-kontrapiżi fit-tmexxija biex ma tħalli lil ħadd iżomm dominanza wisq fit-tul: la l-White House, la l-Kungress, la l-Qrati; la d-Demokratiċi u lanqas ir-Republikani; la l-istati u lanqas il-gvern federali.

Kollha l-ħin kollu jaraw kif se jaslu għal xi dominanza. Anke meta jirnexxielhom għal xi żmien, donnhom jafu li wara se jerġgħu jitilfuha. Togħġobni bħala sistema ta’ demokrazija għalkemm għandha żewġ żvanaġġi: il-polarizzazzjoni hi deni dejjem għaddej (imma f’pajjiżna mhux l-istess?); u jkun hemm wisq żminijiet meta kull deċiżjoni importanti donnha tisfa maqbuda f’paraliżi.

English Version – How we assume our responsibilities

Too much is said about how kind the Maltese are as a nation. Perhaps it’s true and there’s a genuine ring in what’s said.

We also proclaim that we care a lot about our fellows and those who are in distress. One cannot deny that such is the case.

However what we miss most is some attention about not letting this sentiment of solidarity towards others become a screen for twisted ways by which we decide how to distribute wealth and who gets what.

Poverty and social exclusion do not happen haphazardly. They result from the ways by which society is organized, for better or worse. How responsibilities are shared out, and then how responsibility is assumed for what has been done or not – all these ways of behaving constitute an integral part of the sense of kindness that we profess (or contrariwise, its lack…; but no, there can be no such lack, for we’ve already agreed that as a nation, the Maltese are really and truly, a kind people…)

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Sanctions busting

A serious misdemeanour committed by the owner of Pilatus Bank which led him to be strongly sanctioned by the US first, and then by Euroepan financial authorities, was the following: he allegedly ran his financial affairs in a way that allowed him to evade the embargoes which the US was applying to two countries – his own, Iran and Venezuela – when they came to make payments to each other for projects they were jointly carrying out.

The US has unilaterally terminated participation in the nuclear agreement with Iran and reactivated financial sanctions on this country. The European Union is among those who are seeking for ways and means by which to evade these new sanctions. There was even talk about new financial vehicles that could be created to cover sales transactions between them and Iran, using methods that would evade US sanctions.

Technically, what they have been discussing is hardly different from what the Pilatus boss was allegedly attempting to do, no doubt in the interests of his family which had business interests in Venezuela, but also surely in line with the policies of the Iranian government.

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US elections

Controversies about the outcome of the US mid-term elections took time to calm down. Some judge the results in terms of a half empty glass, the rest as one that’s half full.

What is interesting in the developments that have occurred is that they provide another indication of America’s success in introducing counterbalances within its political system. They prevent anybody from remaining dominant for too long: not the White House, not Congress, not the Courts; not Democrats nor Republicans; not the states nor the federal government.

All of them are continually pushing to achieve dominance. Even when they succeed for some time, an awareness seems to prevail about how in a short while, it will be lost. I rather like this kind of mechanism in a democratic system although it has two disadvantages: polarisation is a running sore (but doesn’t the same occur in our country?); and very important decisions get caught too often in a political gridlock.