I have read the recent articles by Mr Roban and Mr Famous about the OBA’s “contradictions and lies” to the people of Bermuda.  

I found them depressing — though not because I felt they had caught the OBA in some fundamental dishonesty, or because I was embarrassed by the allegations they made.  

No, I found the articles depressing because they speak volumes about the reasons we are in the mess we are in in the first place.  

Those articles indicated to me that the authors, and by inference, their political colleagues, don’t fully understand the world and how it works.

The world is full of confusion and contradiction. Top business leaders around the world have remarked that inability to understand and deal with those things equates to inability to be creative.  

What was it that Walt Whitman said?  “Do I contradict myself?  Very well then, I contradict myself.  I am large.  I contain multitudes.”   

The One Bermuda Alliance does contradict itself sometimes.  

We make no apologies for that.  We were elected to get Bermuda out of the mess our predecessors got us into.  

We were elected to govern, not to glue ourselves desperately to every jot and tittle of every prediction and promise every politician ever made, going back into the days of the UBP.  

Sometimes, looking reality in the eye is a sobering experience, and that was how it was for those who were chosen to make up this government.  

We found that there was a wide gulf between what we were told by our predecessors about Bermuda, and what the economy of Bermuda and its social fabric were really like.  

Before we were elected to office, some of the things we thought we would be able to do were conceived in ignorance of the real facts about the Bermuda the then-government had created, and about some of the very unwise things they had done to make Bermuda fit their vision of how it should be.  

We must adjust

As the government, we must learn. We must adjust. We must fix what is broken. We must do our creative best for Bermuda.  That is our overarching duty to the people of Bermuda.

We are all proud of the ability of Bermudians down the centuries to reinvent themselves and their economy, in response to adversity and changing times.  

But I have to wonder what it would have been like if Mr Roban and Mr Famous had been around.  

Would the Governor of the day have been able to hire a shipwrecked Dutch shipbuilder to teach us how to build what are now called Bermuda sloops?  

Or would our PLP friends have nixed that in the name of protecting Bermudian jobs?

Would Portuguese people have been brought to Bermuda to help us with land management?

Would hotel developers have been allowed to build here?

Would we have made any investment in tourism at all, or in international business?

I have to say that if people like Mr Roban and Mr Famous had been around, I doubt the answer to any of those questions would be ‘yes’, and I cannot guess what on earth we would be doing now to try to make a living.  

Commercial immigration has been helpful in many other economies.  

We don’t pretend it is going to fix all our problems at one stroke, but it may help us without having overly troublesome side effects.  I think Bermudians understand that our number one priority is creating jobs.  

Jobs grow from wealthy residents — as a businessman, I have first-hand knowledge of that. 

As Minister Michael Fahy said, it’s not a done deal. It’s an idea we’re exploring. We’ve asked Bermudians to help us make a decision.

It would be helpful if our friends in the Progressive Labour Party would stop frothing at the mouth about red lines and selling Bermudians’ birthright.  

It would be helpful if they would empty their minds of prejudice and preconceived notions and get their creative juices flowing…if they have any, that is. 

Glen Smith is the OBA MP for Devonshire North West.