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posted 12 Sep 2017, 10:14 by Gerry Kangalee   [ updated 12 Sep 2017, 10:26 ]
Viscosity is defined as the measure of a body's resistance to flow. Some of us, car owners for example, check the viscosity of our engine oils in layman's terms. When it begins to lose its viscosity, we change it since it can no longer adequately protect our engine parts.

What, dear readers, you may be asking, has piqued my interest in petroleum engineering? Do I want to go work in our aging oil refinery? Nope! Do advertisements for NP? Nah! Serve on some committee to review Petrotrin's options? Even if I were, the professional 'Board-ers' from the labour movement have sewn up that market.

I was just wondering what were the properties of the oil in the $100m dry hole that A&V Drilling is reported to have struck. Yes, I know the late Malcolm J must be smiling in his grave seeing that some the best practices he adhered to during his chairmanship are being maintained; that he was not expecting such a glorious tribute to his legacy so soon after his passing. A&V drilling seems to have pulled of a remarkable "Hustle and non-Flow''.

The (sick) joke is that this kind of rip-off has been taking place since the early 
Image result for owtunineties, when the lease operatorship and farm out programmes were launched. The Oilfields Workers Trade Union has been raising the issue of rip off and corruption in these programmes for years. Ancel Roget has been quoted as saying: “The OWTU has consistently raised the issue of corruption with the lease operators, the farm out programme and the contracting of and giving away of lucrative wells.

“We raised that issue prior to the United National Congress (UNC) coming into office, when Malcolm Jones (then Petrotrin president) was there. We raised it when the UNC were there and we raised it again under the PNM. It is just a matter of which party is in power and which corrupt contractor and contract lease arrangement benefits that party. So now it is benefitting the PNM, before it was benefitting the UNC and the PNM before and so on.”

This, my dear, friends, comrades and detractors, is the brave new world of privatisation, which bone-headed academics and spokespeople for capitalism still see as the panacea (snake oil) for all ills, even in the face of the CLF Ponzi scheme and the exposure of the international banks and investment houses as the modern day pirates who always “rob I”.

Not that this practice of drilling into the national treasury is new. Just, it seems, that A&V is a wildcat, a maverick, a J.R. Ewing come lately, since none of the political majors, who usually broker such deals want to acknowledge his acquaintance with them.

Poor Nazim Baksh, CEO of A&V, all of a sudden nobody knows his name, although in 2012 Keith Rowley then Leader of the Opposition was the only parliamentarian attending the finals of Mastana Bahar in Penal, on the invitation of one of the show’s sponsors…Nazim Baksh!

Not my friend, says, Franklyn Khan, the chairman of the ruling party, one of whose Senators is Allyson Baksh, the daughter of, take a bow, Nazim Baksh! Rowley was even present at Allyson Baksh’s wedding.

It is an internal affair, they say. Internal to PNM, it seems, seeing that Vidya Deokiesingh, the Petrotrin employee who the Petrotrin audit committee has pointed fingers at, as the facilitator of the great oil scam, being Petrotrin’s crude oil specialist, was the PNM candidate in the 2015 general elections who fought the Siparia seat against Kamla Persad-Bissessar.

Internal indeed: reminds one of the Emile Elias matter re: Massy Communications! Though it was state funds in a State owned company, the directorship was not accountable to the State because of business rules. My blanket is mine…Your blanket is yours King Cypher sang years ago. Even if my money buys both!

Yet we thought we changed governments in 2015. Adolphus Daniell’s E Beam Interact scored $34m. with Life Sport for educational services not delivered? Kind of shifts the paradigm though. Workers at MTS work and do not get paid, even after negotiations are settled; but companies do not operate and get paid. They never get to meet the Industrial court judges. Their matters go straight to the Treasury regardless of the price of oil or natural gas. No humbug with the Ministry of Labour conciliators.

It is not hard to imagine with all this going on in the context of a looming austerity budget; the people all over the country engaging in a new level of righteous self defence; police refusing to obey orders to arrest and charge colleagues; Ministers being caught flat out lying at Parliamentary enquiries; the shift in SEA exam dates adding more pressure on students, teachers and parents; with ill Cabinet ministers ensuring that they do not die on the hospital lawn by going to St. Clair Medical facility that maybe...just maybe, Colm will get the riot he called for!