[private] At the turn of the Century, I recall attending a gathering in Coxen Hole, where then President of Honduras, Carlos Roberto Flores, gave a speech in which he praised our ancestors for having a courageous and independent spirit. As I reflect on that speech, I can’t help but wonder where has that spirit gone, and how we can recapture it. Last month I wrote, or should I say, railed against the tax collectors — tax people come to our island in hordes, and once here they divide into hunting packs and hit the streets running. Every business is fair game. No one is immune but the rules change from day to day. I must say that I am somewhat surprised and disappointed that there has not been a stronger pushback by the island elite against this abusive and this corrupt blood sucking practice.
Unfortunately our elected leaders haven’t intervened on our behalf. I would wager that when our scheming tax collectors meet the chant: “come, let us prey.” They appear to have abandoned all reason, and are driven by avarice and greed. They are relentless in their predatory pursuits – they keep demanding to see documents until they find one that you don’t have, that’s when the extortion begins. This has been going on too long, it has to stop, they are bleeding us and unless we stand up to them it will only get worse.
One person cannot do this; it will take a concerted effort. Marie Dressler, Canadian actress (1869-1934) wrote: “Never one thing and seldom one person can make for a success. It takes a number of them merging into one perfect whole”. How about it folks, can we put an end to this? Sure we can.
I have always tried to maintain an appropriate level of civility and adhere to a standard that respects readers by refraining from using provocative and inflammatory rhetoric. But when it comes to describing these cold-blooded tax collectors, I get carried away. I sometimes wonder how deep is the hole these people live in?
What agency or department imbues them with so much power and authority that allows they can act as judge, jury and executioner when it comes to our financial affairs. I see them as a corrupt energy totally out of control. They clearly have run amok. When I think “Tax-Collectors” all of my emotions become unpacked. But I keep reminding myself that “in the middle of difficulty lies opportunity”, or so said Albert Einstein, the ultra-genius. After all, the tax collectors are no worse than the government they represent. They are doing the bidding of the reprehensible bureaucrats that compose the central government. A government that is by all accounts, morally bankrupt.
Here in the Bay Islands there are individuals that have immigrated from all around the world. From the U.S., Canada, Europe, Latin America, Africa, Australia, Asia, the Caribbean, even the Middle East. You are potentially a valuable resource as we pursue social, economic and political alterations here in the Bay Islands. We cannot afford to wait any longer for change. We are losing our culture, our ancestral lands, and our identity.
There’s an old saying that “the surest way to go broke is to sit around waiting for a break.” If we wanted to fool around, we should’ve done that last year; it’s too late for that now. We need to revitalize the spirit of our ancestors. They were renowned for their courage and fierce independence. These attributes could serve us well today. We should refocus on those values. Bay Islanders are by nature a patient, tolerant and hospitable people. Treat us well, and we will treat you even better. But be advised, there is a limit to our tolerance and patience, and we can take only so much abuse. We have had enough! We would like to chart our own course in this world and follow it. Is that too much to ask? I don’t think so. [/private]