EDITORIAl: FORMING REALISTIC EXPECTATIONS

anguillian
By anguillian June 26, 2017 12:44

 

 

 

Should our expectations be constrained by reality? Very often they are not. As a result, we are often disappointed and feel aggrieved because what we took for granted cannot be realised. Our failure to constrain our expectations by reality is often reflected in the measuring sticks we use when determining what can be reasonably expected of local business establishment or the government. We tend to conclude that a business is able to acquiesce to requests for sponsorship because it has an obligation to fulfill what is described as its corporate social responsibility. We form this viewpoint without any regard for the actual financial circumstances of the business.

While every business on Anguilla should strive to contribute to our social development, and thereby meet its corporate social responsibility, the business must first have the resources available to it to meet that responsibility. While a business might recognise its responsibility and actually desire to contribute, it might not possess the financial or other resources which would enable it to make such a contribution. Sadly, as citizens, we are not always understanding of this situation and many persons or organisations relentlessly pursue business entities in Anguilla for support of their social and community activities without regard for the actual financial circumstances of the business entities.

We appear to be even more relentless, inconsiderate and unforgiving in relation to our expectations of the Government. Our expectations are that the national government will attend to all the country’s security needs; all its social (education, health etc.) needs; and all its infrastructural needs. Very few of us appear to consider the extent of these needs – and the actual capacity of government to meet these needs and where or how government obtains the financial and other resources to meet these needs.

We must quickly come to the realisation that the citizenry, through the payment of taxes, plays a significant role in terms of the extent of the resources available to government. How many of us express high expectations of government but yet have not met our obligation to pay our taxes? How many of us expect all areas for which we consider the government to be responsible, to be promptly and effectively addressed without regard to the government’s actual budgetary allocation?

I suspect that most of us can readily gain an appreciation of the constraints a government may be operating under if we simply consider our personal budgetary constraints. In many instances our desires for our homes and our families, no matter how worthy, cannot be met because our financial resources cannot fund our desires. The reality is that this is a situation our government and other governments encounter regularly.
In the absence of a thriving economy, a country’s needs will be more than the government is capable of meeting. Citizens must, however, still demand accountability from their government in terms of how available resources are utilised. The implementation of a national plan, which is used as the blueprint to guide the use of our country’s scarce resources, should greatly assist in tempering and managing the expectations of members of the public. It is hoped that current plans to devise and implement a national plan will be realised. A well-constructed and implemented national plan, funded by a highly compliant taxpayer base, and managed by a responsible government, should lead to the formulation and realisation of realistic expectations.

anguillian
By anguillian June 26, 2017 12:44

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