As if that would calm the nation's jitters.
Even so, she (conveniently?) neglected to mention that:
- In the case of Iraq, as of the date of this writing, its 2009 Budget has not yet been approved by its Parliament and, in any event, the Iraqi Deputy Prime Minister has publicly declared that it will amend its projected expenditure because of falling oil revenues. Karen and them have not.
- In the case of Alaska, whose financial year runs begins in July, thus, whose Budget is prepared and approved some time before then, the U$83 oil price used for their 2009 Budget was LOWER than that for their 2008 Budget. Karen and them went in the opposite direction.
- In the case of Indonesia, in response to falling oil prices, their economic projections have already been downgraded; and, they have already, twice, revised, downwards, the base oil price, overall by some 15%. Meanwhile, Karen and them have not budged. And,
- In the case of Iran, one of the world's major oil-exporting countries, there's abundant evidence of serious efforts being made to re-hike world oil prices by tweaking the supply. Iran's probably prompted so to do because depressed oil prices would mean less revenue available to maintain her massive social welfare programmes. Whatever! Suffice it to say that everyone knows Iran could get OPEC to turn on the screws, as she has some heavy clout in that oil cartel. Karen and them have none.
Since Trinbago has neither say nor sway over the price of oil, it stands to reason that, in projecting therefrom-to-be-derived revenues, any prudent Finance Minister would yaw close to shore rather than look to chart a course through Kick-'em-Jenny type waters. Karen and them have not.
One might also recall that, whenever challenged by the public to "run something" from the increased oil revenues, former Junior Finance Minister, Conrad Enill, was fond of explaining that, when projecting for the future, the Manning administration sticks with the historic long-term oil price price and that, regardless, the increase didn't amount to much, as Trinbago's oil fetches a much lower price than is popularly believed.
Given that, for the ten-year period ending 2007, that historic figure was about U$41/barrel, in light of the dramatic turn (for the worse) of events, hindsight forces one to wonder why Conrad was not given the job which Karen now holds?
There's cause to be alarmed, for, truly, Karen-and-them behaviour reminds the cognoscenti of the recreation-club nowayrians, the ones who always hang around in the wappie and poker rooms, scrounging and grovelling for a lil change from the Casa or some lucky, carefree gambler and who, eventually, when someone does throw them a bet, would dive in the gamble and, if they happen to win two bets, would become so frenzied by the sight of a couple hundred dollars scruffily heaped in front of them, -their money, not nobody else own- that they would fervently believe that, such is their there-and-then fortune and skill, they could break everybody, even the Casa and, without fail, overplay their luck, because their winning would launch them into a spending spree, buying whiskey and chasing with beer, plus Benson and Hedges, when, just before, it was literally catpiss and pepper and a bummed smoke, until, as surely as thunder follows lightning and in about the same time frame, they end right back at square one: penniless, wondering whence cometh the next meal, reminiscing and telling whoever cares to listen of the pile ah money they just had.