THE SUNDAY TIMES: Dropping eaves

2021-09-26T17:39:16+02:00Sun, 26th Sep '21, 17:39|

From my article in The Sunday Times today: "There’s another reason why warranting wiretapping should no longer be in the hands of politicians. It is unsafe to give people so motivated in learning what their rivals or opponents are doing the power to decide who gets listened to and who doesn’t. "A 2014 Daily Mail [...]

A note to Prime Minister Robert Abela

2021-09-24T12:44:51+02:00Fri, 24th Sep '21, 12:44|

I won’t take too much of your time, prime minister. I feel I must thank you for taking the time to speak with the police chief about my safety and the safety of journalists. I could say I shouldn’t need to thank someone for doing their job. But I disagree with that approach. It’s good [...]

Switching off gravity

2021-09-24T12:37:44+02:00Fri, 24th Sep '21, 12:35|

In the coming few weeks John Dalli is expected in court to answer for alleged crimes the police felt confident it could prove in 2012, nine years ago. What happened in between the decision to charge him and the implementation of that decision so much later? Joseph Muscat won the election. John Rizzo was fired [...]

Perspective in perspective

2021-09-24T10:08:46+02:00Fri, 24th Sep '21, 06:36|

I am writing to provide a fuller picture of the facts that have led me to leave Malta for a while. I have to do so because I have left room for misinterpretation and controversy that distracts from the real and burning issues facing this country. In an interview with an Italian press freedom NGO [...]

Show will go on

2021-09-23T08:21:05+02:00Thu, 23rd Sep '21, 08:21|

You will have heard that in the next few days I’m stepping away from the island because of security concerns. I am, as you might imagine, impatient for those concerns to be addressed. My family is here, my home is here, my work is here. So here is where I want to be if I [...]

Inequality of arms

2021-09-22T15:37:54+02:00Wed, 22nd Sep '21, 15:37|

An anonymous correspondent writing on Simon Mercieca’s blog asks a pertinent question. Why is the Attorney General’s office “losing one trial after the next”? Put properly the question might give a clearer picture of its importance. Why is Malta failing to convict so many people it brings to trial? The question is pertinent because its [...]


2021-09-20T16:25:02+02:00Mon, 20th Sep '21, 16:25|

Those who do not remember the past are condemned to repeat it. - George Santayana Those who, like me, are of a certain age will surely remember what Malta went through in the seventies and eighties under the regime run by the party then known as the Malta Labour Party. The Mintoff and Karmenu Mifsud [...]

Political deaths

2021-09-20T15:48:42+02:00Mon, 20th Sep '21, 15:48|

The crisis in the prison has now been “politicised”. I use that word with the meaning it has acquired in the local context which is not what the word properly means. An event in Malta is said to be “politicised” the moment it becomes impossible to persuade anyone to change an opinion they feel is [...]

A hundred years of building

2021-09-20T14:04:41+02:00Mon, 20th Sep '21, 14:04|

Joseph Portelli’s interview with Times of Malta’s Mark Laurence Zammit raises a number of questions. Let’s be clear from the outset. I’m going to take quotes out of their proper context and jumble them together in ways Joseph Portelli did not mean them to be. So the charge of unfairness and perhaps even the risk [...]

Being Giovanni Grixti

2021-09-17T17:26:20+02:00Fri, 17th Sep '21, 17:26|

That must be awkward. The judgement he’s most known for is the one when he accepted an appeal by the Panama Gang against an order of a lower court to start an in genere inquiry on the back of Simon Busuttil’s argument that the Panama Papers gave enough indications of the existence of a crime [...]

The woman who paddled her canoe

2021-09-17T16:01:30+02:00Fri, 17th Sep '21, 16:01|

Josette Schembri Vella, known by readers of this website as Mrs Prince of Darkness, was today, at long last, charged with money laundering. A company she part-owns was also charged. Through the noice in the courtroom while bail was debated there was talk of a small number of euro with several zeroes at the end [...]

It’s never what you think you remember

2021-09-17T12:03:40+02:00Fri, 17th Sep '21, 11:25|

Perhaps like me you’ve sometimes wondered how they manage to do it. Consider Robert Abela yesterday spraying his shorts with that stupid political o face as he received an envelope from EU taxpayers with a cheque for several hundred million euro to help us with the covid recovery. I know it’s not exactly a new [...]

TVM: The Ministry of Truth

2021-09-17T10:53:39+02:00Fri, 17th Sep '21, 10:14|

They say it's 2021, but we're back to 1984. A water polo player has been suspended for 10 games and fined €960 after the association’s disciplinary commissioner found him guilty of threatening to kill an official of the aquatic sports association that organises the water polo league. You’d think it’s an ordinary story for the [...]

Death in hell

2021-09-17T09:24:43+02:00Fri, 17th Sep '21, 09:24|

Read the interview the grieving father of the last suicide in Kordin prison gave Matthew Xuereb. Two warders are being charged with involuntary homicide in the case. The parent’s version of the story is different from the official story in a number of respects. Officially the prison authorities say they had no reason to suspect [...]

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