Hello. My name is Peter Campbell and I am the provisional Managing Director and CEO of the Caribbean East Atlantic Company. In addition to overseeing the business and social functions of the C.E.A.C. it is the job that I have designated for myself to present a political vision for the company once it is formally registered by November 1st 2013. I hope that one day this company will lead a united Caribbean Diaspora and a united Caribbean. To make this possible we must begin as we wish to continue, that is, on a path with a vision which unites our own people and connects us constructively with other peoples of the world.

My watch word for this month is tolerance and the pragmatism of tolerance. We all know what tolerance means; a fair, objective, and permissive attitude toward opinions and practices that differ from our own. I learnt about pragmatism in philosophy back in my time at the University of the West Indies. Pragmatism is a philosophical concept which emphasizes practicality of thought and the usefulness of ideas.

There are no permanent friends or enemies. There are only permanent interests. If we as a community of countries and a community of individuals are to be successful then we must learn to first understand and permit other people to live and by that token demand the right to be understood and permitted to live as we please. I contend that being tolerant of others is a great way to defend our own permanent interests.

In holding beliefs we must never forget where our interests lay. Our interests as individuals lay where they have been for thousands of years. Our interest is in the ability to feed, cloth and shelter ourselves and our family, protect ourselves and our family and actualize our vision of ourselves. Our beliefs my waver over time but our interests are permanent. We should not hold on to changeable beliefs at the expense of permanent interests and we should cultivate the ability to see beyond the varying beliefs of others to the common interests that they hold as fellow humans.

In my travels through the different communities of London I have learnt the usefulness of tolerance in a multi-racial and multi-cultural society. I have not always been the richest or most able person in the groups that I have frequented. The tolerance of others has helped me survive and grow and by that token I feel that it is my duty to help others to survive and grow from strength to strength by tolerating them at the stage of development which they happen to be at.

Tolerance will be useful to the clients of the C.E.A.C. since they will be required to live among other people from the Caribbean during their first six months in the country. This is an economic necessity in London since it is very expensive to rent on your own if you come from the Caribbean where wages are stagnant and the exchange rate is prohibitive. I currently live with flat mates as a way to save and invest money and their presence doesn’t always make it worthwhile. A neighbor recently got cats and even though my contract prohibits me from having cats my intolerance could have stemmed from the fact that he doesn’t take good care of the cats or their living in the house. Needless to say if the cats don’t have a sandbox things will get messy. I have decided to allow my flat mate to grow in his own time and endure the unpleasant odor until he learns better. This is not because I am weak or unable to fight but because I have deemed it pragmatic to tolerate him. To me he is obviously in the wrong but just by stating the case to the wider community and positioning myself as the morally generous and superior person I have gained more with you than I could have lost by making him an enemy. There are many other ways in which tolerance pays off but I hope that this example was sufficient. My closing admonition is that if you are tolerant you will move freely through a world of people.