15 MAY 2002
Comic this week: Maltese fall
The uncertainty principle
The Maltese business world is suffering from a bad bout of a depravity of confidence - a sensation exacerbated by the constant bickering over Europe and the hysteria campaign fuelled by isolationists and nationalists.
The indecisiveness over Europe has fuelled an uncertainty that is at once contagious and negative and it thrives on the fact that staying out will depress investment possibilities.
This is not a mere illusion, it is a fact that cannot be denied.
There are a few within the Labour party fold who have convinced themselves that Maltas future is best cared for from an isolated vantage point.
This is dangerous talk.
There is an added concern, the no lobby attempts to portray the advantages of Europe in the number of funds that have been received for certain projects.
This is not the only handicap raised by the no lobby. They also argue that Malta can change and reform without the intervention of the EU commission.
Their excessive fear is caused by the insular politics that dominates a large chunk of the Labour party - a politics reminiscent of the Mintoff years and inherited by the Sant administration.
Accession into Europe, and this cannot be repeated enough, will allow for a growth potential to our hitherto limited economic base. It will contribute toward widening our horizons. The Europeans do not needs us, but we need them.
The long knives
The Nationalist party is full of smiling prima donnas who are so infatuated with themselves they are willing to stab their own family to get to the end of things.
In doing so, they may well lose those who are most capable. Because let us face it, the Nationalist party lacks the quality of human resources it boasts of.
It is understandable that people disagree with people, but not to the extent that we are witnessing. Sworn enemies have wilfully leaked information and exaggerated information to shoot their party rivals in the back.
These are the same people who pretend to be holier than thou, who are unsure why they rally within a Christian Democratic party.
If the party leadership fails to tackle this problem, one should not be surprised if the Labour opposition were to have a field day and make successful inroads into Nationalist core.
There are many lessons to be learnt. But lesson number one is not to enter a battle with your captains fighting between themselves, or, worse still, with a corporal attempting to stab a general in the back.
Spin on Europe
The spin on Europe has, until now, been restricted to giving information to two or three journalists.
The governments press office, the DOI, might as well close down because the government is not interested in seeing it organise competent briefing sessions.
Once again we appeal to the government to address all the media and not small sections of the press. This is the only way forward. Until now, the governments press strategy has been poor and very limited.