GUEST POST: I’m a stranger at home

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2018-02-16T11:24:03+01:00Fri, 16th Feb '18, 07:50|

By someone known to me: It is difficult to describe the four months since Daphne’s assassination. I knew her and am privileged to have done so. I did not know her well. She was not a friend, more of an acquaintance. Our paths crossed fleetingly several times - none had anything to do with politics [...]

George Abela’s short knife

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2018-02-15T16:39:35+01:00Thu, 15th Feb '18, 16:39|

The President must be having an uncomfortable afternoon. Reading the testimony given by her predecessor in court today in the proceedings against the organisers of the 2015 charity car show event when a driver mowed down viewers in a horrible accident she must feel the cold knife in the small of her back. George Abela [...]

On anti-money-laundering weaknesses in the gaming sector

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2018-02-15T14:37:29+01:00Thu, 15th Feb '18, 14:37|

Agimeg is a specialised Italian news agency interested in the gaming industry. They asked me some questions in view of the recent sparks between Malta and Italy about the use of Malta by mafiosi to launder their money here. Here's the interview. There will be the usual hackles accusing me of treason. The zombie troll [...]

American patients unhappy about Steward’s foray in Malta

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2018-02-15T12:43:39+01:00Thu, 15th Feb '18, 12:43|

Last boxing day, Steward Health Group announced on its Facebook page it had purchased the concession of three hospitals in Malta. Its regular readers were none too pleased. The general message was they were not too happy with the service they were getting and they were not expecting things to get better now their hospital [...]

Steward Health Group sister company files for bankruptcy

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2018-02-15T08:57:29+01:00Thu, 15th Feb '18, 08:57|

Remington Outdoor Company Inc, that like Steward Health Group is owned by Cerberus Capital Management, has filed for bankruptcy to slash a debt load just shy of a billion US dollars. Remington is one of the largest American firearms manufacturers. A Reuters report quotes Remington saying it will receive $145 million in bankruptcy financing to [...]

If you are a journalist, quit the IĠM: leave it for functionaries of the state

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2018-02-14T22:39:36+01:00Wed, 14th Feb '18, 22:37|

Not that I was falling over myself to join, but today's Istitut tal-Ġurnalisti Maltin statement "condemning" Daphne Caruana Galizia's sister for stopping a self-described "One TV journalist" in his line of duty, should be enough to get any self-respecting autonomous person to walk out immediately. Their statement is an act of collaboration with an oppressive [...]

Economist IU: “Risk that investors could turn away from Malta”

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2018-02-14T21:20:50+01:00Wed, 14th Feb '18, 21:20|

The Economist Intelligence Unit has in a report issued today analysing the impact of the killing of Daphne Caruana Galizia concluded that "the international focus on corruption and organised crime in Malta in the wake of Ms Caruana Galizia's murder does not appear to have had a negative impact so far on the country's business environment. [...]

Martin Scicluna and Alfred Sant on corruption

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2018-02-15T07:36:09+01:00Wed, 14th Feb '18, 20:31|

I am way beyond the stage of describing Martin Scicluna as the poorer signatory of a Faustian deal. Doing so perpetuates the fiction that he is some objective analyst who uses knowledge, experience and professionalism to rule independently in favour of Joseph Muscat like the one year old’s innocent grasp of kinky underwear at their [...]

Where impunity does not rule

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2018-02-14T07:51:04+01:00Wed, 14th Feb '18, 07:51|

Israel’s police have recommended prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu be charged over alleged bribery. While the attorney general assesses the recommendation, which can take months, Benjamin Netanyahu pledges to stay on as prime minister. He says he’s convinced the charges will amount to nothing. Some people have pointed this out to me highlighting how proper institutions [...]

Defiance

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2018-02-13T21:27:57+01:00Tue, 13th Feb '18, 21:27|

Today’s Valletta Council meeting and the decision not to vote on a Councillor’s motion to destroy the Daphne Caruana Galizia memorial in front of the Court house is no cause for celebration. The Mayor’s decision, perfectly correct, to rule the motion outside the Council’s competence, does not address the question the motion raised: not whether [...]

Campaigning for the 16-year old vote

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2018-02-12T17:05:00+01:00Mon, 12th Feb '18, 17:05|

I kept thinking how, in the midst of the general euphoria for the emancipation of 16 and 17 year-olds, I was going to explain my queasiness about this notion. And then I saw the picture below and perhaps without having to say much I can be better understood. Is this what we need for our democracy [...]

Monumental mistakes

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2018-02-12T17:09:05+01:00Mon, 12th Feb '18, 16:40|

I will not go into the merits of if and when and where a permanent memorial for Daphne Caruana Galizia should be erected. If I try I suppose I can form an opinion on the subject but I don't think this is really the most important thing on the national agenda right now. When I [...]

Gaming authority to clamp down on Italian licencees

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2018-02-12T12:20:23+01:00Mon, 12th Feb '18, 12:14|

Specialist industry journal GamingCompliance quoted "high-ranking Maltese sources" saying that all Italian online gambling licences in Malta will be investigated to root out connections with illegal betting shops in Italy. Not a moment too soon. This is welcome news for an industry tarnished by ineffective policing on the mafia who has been using Malta to [...]

What are we supposed to think, Neville Gafà?

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2018-02-12T21:12:18+01:00Mon, 12th Feb '18, 11:41|

Neville Gafà is pitying himself for having a rotten reputation of corruption, particularly for extorting money from immigrants seeking an entry visa. He tweeted his anger at PN MP Claudette Buttigieg for retweeting someone who first tweeted Neville Gafà when quoting newspaper reports that a quarter of the American University’s student body vanished after they [...]

The MAM should not be left alone

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2018-02-12T10:26:18+01:00Mon, 12th Feb '18, 10:26|

It is high time for the other unions to speak up about the privatisation of hospitals. MAM, the doctors’ union, has issued a statement today (see below) reminding everyone how it has stood, mostly alone, against the dismantling of our national health service since this corrupt idea first popped out of Konrad Mizzi’s genius.  And [...]

Joseph Muscat for President: Labour MP tweets support

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2018-02-11T12:45:51+01:00Sun, 11th Feb '18, 12:45|

Rosianne Cutajar, Labour MP, has tweeted her support for Joseph Muscat's transition from prime minister of a parliamentary democracy to president of a presidential republic with enhanced and concentrated executive power. She expressed her support of the notion with her characteristic kiss-my-sweaty-balls attitude in response to a tweet asking whether Joseph Muscat's intention for constitutional [...]