Clean slate

2018-03-08T13:22:27+01:00Thu, 8th Mar '18, 13:22|

The removal from the public record of an embarrassing court decision against a government official is a scandal in and of itself. The stupid 19 year old girl who stole a credit card and went on a shopping spree is now a 28 year old woman around whom rules are bent and exceptions made just [...]

Jacob Rees-Mogg on Freedom of Speech

2018-03-08T12:04:08+01:00Thu, 8th Mar '18, 12:04|

Watch this remarkable speech in the Commons by Conservative MP Jacob Rees-Mogg, far from my favourite person in the world but brilliant here while making a strong case against the use of libel laws and defamation suits to silence critics of politicians and independent journalists, as well as rules to subject the press to state [...]

What happens in Riga

2018-03-08T09:18:35+01:00Thu, 8th Mar '18, 09:18|

The goings on in the political and banking scene in Latvia should be attracting more attention here. Latvia’s third largest bank, ABLV, has just been driven out of business after the United States Treasury proposed to ban ABLV from having a correspondence account in the United States due to money laundering concerns. The Financial Crimes [...]

Street Justice

2018-03-07T16:18:40+01:00Wed, 7th Mar '18, 16:16|

I’m not a caveman. I do not want to give the impression that I think wives allow themselves to be used as mouthpieces by their husbands. Anyone who knows my wife knows that is one primordial macho prejudice I most definitely cannot have. But read through this Facebook chat started by Labour MEP Marlene Mizzi [...]

Manchurian bank

2018-03-07T15:12:25+01:00Wed, 7th Mar '18, 15:12|

Creditors and depositors of Cypriot Laiki bank are on tenterhooks to see the purchase of that bank’s shares in Lombard Bank go through. Indeed contrary to mistaken information in a The Sunday Times report, the purchase of the shares would go a long way to settle moneys owed to creditors and depositors, not the Cypriot [...]

Bending the rules

2018-03-06T18:55:24+01:00Tue, 6th Mar '18, 18:54|

Ivan Camilleri’s Times of Malta story on two law graduates passed by the reviewing board of judges for their warrant in spite of a criminal record makes for great reading. And it caused something of a stir. First a summary of the facts: eight years ago Yanica Barbara and Thomas Sant were found guilty and [...]

Steward dismisses accounting staff

2018-03-06T14:33:50+01:00Tue, 6th Mar '18, 14:33|

One of the first tasks undertaken by the new management of the Karin Grech, Gozo General and St Luke's Hospitals was to dismiss administrative staff. This website is informed the entire accounts department is being shut down and staff made redundant. I have asked Vitals Health (now owned by Steward) to confirm or deny this [...]

What the Maltese really think of corruption

2018-03-06T12:57:51+01:00Tue, 6th Mar '18, 12:57|

Even logic is subject to mood. If one’s own hypotheses are not challenged they become dogma and one is stuck without a way out. In times like these we give in to despair when argument is not enough, logic is optional, truth but a version of reality likely least favoured by many. But in despair [...]

Long read: The People vs Democracy

2018-03-06T10:47:31+01:00Tue, 6th Mar '18, 10:47|

Take some time to read this article in The Guardian by Yascha Mounk on the uncertain state of play of liberal democracy in the world today. It is hardly comforting that Malta is but a part of a worldwide trend. The fact of the matter is anyone born after 1980 is not directly experienced in [...]


2018-03-05T21:50:12+01:00Mon, 5th Mar '18, 21:50|

I’ll be honest with you. I cannot be fagged to go down the comments board, particularly the ones under the Facebook posts, to give individual answers to the shocked, the obtuse, the stubborn, the disappointed, the angry, the stupid, the facetious, the cowardly and even the odd sincerely confused. What they all seem to be [...]

What’s Chris Cardona’s secretary thinking?

2018-03-05T20:43:13+01:00Mon, 5th Mar '18, 20:43|

So Chris Cardona’s secretary regrets suing Daphne Caruana Galizia for libel and filing to have her bank accounts frozen in the process because she said he was with his boss at a brothel in Germany while they were supposed to be on duty. When his expression of regret emerged in court, his lawyer, Pawlu Lia [...]

She’s back

2018-03-05T15:57:55+01:00Mon, 5th Mar '18, 15:57|

Nicky Vella de Fremaux, Adrian Delia’s wife, is back on Facebook. She had deactivated her account during her husband’s leadership campaign. In an 8 October interview with Rachel Attard of The Malta Independent she explained her reasons. From that interview: “You have always been outspoken. Why did you close your Facebook page? I did not [...]

Holier than thou

2018-03-05T13:15:41+01:00Mon, 5th Mar '18, 13:15|

Robert Musumeci is famous for many things: dexterity with planning permits, dexterity with political allegiance and dexterity with logical summersaults. He’s not famous for dexterity with language. His tweet mantra these days is ‘holier-than-thou’ thrown willy-nilly at critics of his twin deities du jour: Joseph Muscat and Adrian Delia. I suppose I can guess what [...]

Global Anti-Corruption Consortium: Report on ‘Golden Visas’

2018-03-05T11:02:14+01:00Mon, 5th Mar '18, 11:00|

Transparency International EU and the Organised Crime and Corruption Reporting Project have teamed up to produce a study on how citizenship- and residence-by-investment schemes, commonly referred to as ‘Golden Visa’ programmes are vulnerable to abuse and undermine the fight against corruption in the European Union and neighbouring countries. Read their reports on Malta here and here.  

Reporters without borders: Why are Malta public officials so hostile towards the media?

2018-03-05T10:17:57+01:00Mon, 5th Mar '18, 10:17|

Here's a brief interview I had with Rebecca Vincent on RTK earlier. Rebecca Vincent is director of the UK office of Reporters without borders (RSF). Reporters Without Borders promotes and defends the freedom to be informed and to inform others throughout the world. Based in Paris, it has ten international offices (Berlin, Brussels, Geneva, Madrid, [...]

They must think they’re smart

2018-03-05T09:56:38+01:00Mon, 5th Mar '18, 09:56|

So they did it at last. They 'cleaned up' the protest site in front of the courts demanding justice in the cases revealed by Daphne Caruana Galizia and the case of her own death. They forgot to remove the bay trees. They must have liked those or completely overlooked their symbolism. And they forgot to [...]

Face it

2018-03-04T17:30:59+01:00Sun, 4th Mar '18, 17:30|

We often speak of Joseph Muscat’s new clothes. His delusional imperialism rests on clay feet that everyone can see but those who would rather not, especially the naked emperor himself. But what is Adrian Delia smoking that allows him not to shudder in the cold? The Nationalist Party, heir to generations of political thinkers, expert [...]

THE SUNDAY TIMES: First one down

2018-03-04T08:16:58+01:00Sun, 4th Mar '18, 08:14|

The first to go is freedom of speech. And it will not be a scene out of 1984, with miserably clad drones crossing their fists to black and white propaganda playing on the screen of a dingy cinema. It will be an ordinary sunny day that people will treat just like any other. The day [...]

G Farrugia Calleja: That Fitch report

2018-03-03T20:26:11+01:00Sat, 3rd Mar '18, 20:26|

By resident guest George Farrugia Calleja: Far be it from me to question the economics underlying any rating agency’s report, I am entirely unqualified to do so. When Fitch or whoever come out with a stellar rating report on Malta, it is generally my position that I will let someone who can read numbers without developing [...]

No Steward hospital in top-100 US rankings

2018-03-03T19:30:29+01:00Sat, 3rd Mar '18, 19:20|

Not one of Steward Health Group’s 41 hospitals in the United States made it to the top 100 US hospitals rankings for 2017 in the Healthgrades National Health Index. Clearly being “the largest private network of hospitals in the United States”does not mean it runs hospitals that rank among the best. Healthgrades was the first [...]

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