Thursday, January 16, 2003

From a fascinating story in today's Express:

Leader of Government Business in the House of Representatives Ken Valley said the need to make profits may be the reason for sensational headlines in the nation's newspapers and the type of calypsoes being produced for the 2003 Carnival season.

(You mean newspapers print headlines that will increase sales? What an astonishing insight! No wonder the man's in cabinet!)

Valley said, "Whenever I go to Jamaica, I always wonder what is wrong with us here in Trinidad. There seems to be an intellectualism in Jamaica that seems to be absent (here) at present."

(Is that the same "intellectualism" the Manning government is trying to breed here in T&T by turning Laventille & Morvant into garrison communities like Kingston's?)

Valley also knocked the print media saying "there seems to be an absence of analysis".

I suspect I read more of the regional press than Valley does; in fact, just about every day I read the English-speaking Caribbean's eight major newspapers: the Trinidad Express in print, & the Trinidad Guardian, the Jamaica Observer, the Jamaica Gleaner, the Barbados Advocate, the Barbados Nation, the Stabroek News, & the Guyana Chronicle online. (See links to the right.) Naturally I don't read every last local news tidbit in every paper, but I glance through the major stories & pay particular attention to the op-ed pages. I can say with great assurance that the T&T newspapers are as good as their Jamaican counterparts, & better than those in the rest of the region, at reporting. And when it comes to "analysis", by which I suppose Valley means the commentary in the op-ed pages, the T&T papers are far superior on the whole to the Jamaicans, the Bajans, & the Guyanese. Frankly, Lloyd Best in the Express twice a week is a better deal than all the op-ed writers in those other papers combined. Guyana's best columnist, Ian McDonald, is really a transplanted Trini; as is Wayne Brown, who's one of the highlights of the Observer's Sunday edition.

But maybe my idea of good "analysis" is not the same as Mr. Valley's; see his first quote at the top of this post.

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