HAEMORRHOID ON HOW TO STOP BLEEDING

The domino game against Dessie and The Dunce was intense when, at five-all in the last six before supper, I drew: Double-six; six-three; six-blank; five-four; double-three; deuce-ace and deuce-blank.

Double-six was posed faster’n Baby P can cry “I want EWI!” Dessie played six-deuce; Gene Autry gratefully drew double-deuce; and the Dunce contributed deuce-five. Quick, what’s my correct play? No peeking. The answer comes at the end.

During the pizza break, Haemorrhoid, who’d been kibitzing as usual, told one of his famous shaggy dog stories. Regular readers remember Ernest H. Flower whose nickname came from his repeated complaints about “piles and piles” of work on his desk. “This time” he began in a dramatic tone “I’ll tell you the inside story of the Battle of Trafalgar.”

“Lord Nelson” Haemorrhoid continued’ was aboard the HMS Victory on October 21, 1805, when his look-out reported ten French ships approaching in battle formation. After signalling the famous words to his men ‘England expects every man will do his duty’ Nelson sent for his trusty right hand, Captain Hardy. ‘Hardy’ Nelson commanded, ‘Go to my quarters and bring me my bright red jacket.’

“Hardy obeyed and, as Nelson put on the jacket, asked him why. ‘We’re entering a fierce battle with the French’ Nelson explained ‘if I should be wounded, I don’t want my men to see me bleed.’

“Not long afterwards, the look-out published what the Gleaner would’ve called a ‘clarification or correction’. There were thirty-three French ships approaching. Nelson didn’t hesitate. He turned to Hardy: ‘Hardy, go to my quarters and bring me my brown corduroy trousers.’”

I remembered that tall tale as I watched pictures of Darryl Vaz in attendance at James Forbes’ sentencing hearing. I tried to see what colour trousers he wore but the cameras were careful to stay above the waist. Now that Forbes is found guilty of corruption and Darryl made no secret of the fact he was the catalyst for the entire “mediation” process, he’d be entitled to a somewhat queasy feeling while contemplating the future.

I’ve several questions arising from Forbes’ verdict and sentencing because this episode has always struck me as akin to Watergate or the Monica Lewinsky affair in that the cover up was more offensive than the original act. Recall all this began when Bruce Bicknell was charged with attempting to bribe a police officer to avoid a traffic ticket. The policeman has since recanted, testifying he erred in believing Bicknell tried to bribe him. Meanwhile, impressive State muscle was called into play to try to “mediate” proceedings.

I’m amazed media hasn’t picked up on the fact that, before Forbes’ involvement, the first “mediator” on the scene was Former Commissioner Lucius Thomas (then a consultant at the National Security Ministry) who advised the policeman to “think about his family”. Gleaner reports had the policeman approaching Thomas but why? From all accounts, nobody approached Llewelyn directly after the day of the dirty deed. Forbes, tongue no doubt loosened by relief, said, in a post sentencing interview, that he was contacted by Lucius Thomas and told “a motorist” had a problem with Sgt Llewelyn. Was Thomas in charge of the entire process? If so, on whose authority?

Within an hour of sentencing, the $800,000 fine was paid. When I grow up, I want to be an SSP.

Also recall the peculiar behaviour of the present Commissioner who issued a personal statement (not through the CCU) to say he was “hoping for an early trial so SSP Forbes will get an opportunity to have his say in court” (doesn’t everybody?) and then refused to give a statement in the case against Vaz despite Vaz’ public allegations that he called Ellington for permission to mediate. Remember a young prosecutor who insisted on postponing the case against Vaz awaiting a statement from the Commissioner was unceremoniously pulled from the case. He’s now the Contractor General.

Why was Commissioner Ellington unwilling to testify? Why’d he allow intervention in current police operations by a former Commissioner? Did he even know Thomas was conducting the orchestra? Did Thomas’ current boss know of his consultant’s moonlighting as “mediator”? Or wasn’t it moonlighting after all? Why’d no policeman question Thomas?

The play is to cut the pose with six-blank. Don’t expose your only five so early. The Dunce might have a place to attack. Worse five-four is also the only four. Protecting that character from public scrutiny is crucial. If they can’t see it, they won’t know it’s your weakness.

Peace and Love

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