Photo gag falls flat as Mac takes aim at PPM

| 27/05/2015 | 61 Comments
Cayman News Service

Photoshopped image of McKeeva Bush in the Legislative Assembly May 2015

(CNS): A photoshopped image of the opposition leader in the Legislative Assembly showing him supposedly napping during the budget debate has failed to raise much of a giggle among politicians. McKeeva Bush took aim at the PPM Wednesday saying he believed the image reportedly sent to the local paper by the premier’s press secretary was taken on the day he made his response to the budget statements and was a malicious attempt to ridicule him.

Bush asked Speaker of the House Julianna O’Connor-Connolly to allow him to raise the issue as a matter of privilege and debate it after the budget issues were dealt with. Bush was allowed to outline his concern briefly but the speaker declined to allow a debate as she said it was a misconduct issue and not a matter of parliamentary privilege.

As well as being sent to The Cayman Compass by Tammie Chisholm, the paper’s former news editor who is now Premier Alden McLaughlin’s press secretary, the image was widely circulated on local email and posted on the Facebook page of Chris Wight, one of the PPM’s longest standing leading members.

However, Bush acknowledged that neither Chisholm nor Wight were in the legislative Chamber on the day the picture was alleged to have been taken and then edited. The UDP leader said he did not know who took it but the angle and other details suggest it was taken last Wednesday (20 May) from the government side when Bush was responding to government’s budget. CIGTV footage shows he never fell asleep during that session and he warned members that if they ever think McKeeva Bush is asleep they are mistaken.

In a brief outline about his concerns, the opposition leader said it was a continuation of the “smear campaign” to undermine him, but he said it was also a slight against the entire parliament and the “authority” of the members of the LA.

“The taking of this picture and its publication … is a deliberate attack to bring ridicule on me,” Bush said, adding that after more than 30 years in politics he had never seen things get as dirty as they are now, as he pointed the finger at people he described as political opportunists outside the LA. Bush stated that whoever did it was bent on maligning and degrading him but it was disrespectful of the whole House. He also made it clear he believed it was a member of the PPM.

“This skullduggery does nothing to advance the House or the party system. I know it’s not right,” he said, claiming that government supporters were doing everything they could to make him look as bad as possible. “This is a serious contempt on me,” he said and offered the speaker a blown up copy of the image, which he said he planned to frame.

O’Connor-Connolly had already addressed the matter when she reminded visitors to the Chamber last week that unauthorised photography was not allowed.


On Thursday 21 May she stated that as well as the picture of the opposition leader, which was circulating, another unnamed minister had also been photographed and that picture circulated. CNS has been unable to establish who was in that image or where it appeared.

Following Bush’s request to have the matter debated on the floor today, she said she did not believe the situation was a matter of privilege and ruled against the debate but reiterated that picture-taking was strictly prohibited. The speaker said she was beefing up security at the LA to prevent people from being able to take pictures and warned the party leaders to impress upon their membership, as well as civil servants and government staff who are required to be in the LA, not to take images. She said she would take appropriate action if she found out who was behind the breaches of the parliamentary rules.

However, Bush disagreed with the speaker’s position and said he believed he should have been allowed to raise and debate the matter under the standing orders.

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Comments (61)

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  1. Anonymous says:

    As God is my witness

  2. Anonymous says:

    It seems to me that were he sitting in an upright position mckeewa’s face would be almost completely covered by the object in front of him. My acknowledged unprofessional opinion therefore is that “doctoring” of the picture is nearly if not completely out of the question.

  3. Anonymous says:

    This man? can stay awake 24 hours on the trot playing the slots (whilst on Government business) so he must have been in a bad way in the LA.

  4. Anonymous says:

    Listen to him speaking on the video. If you can make sense of his garbled, confused words, he says that people cannot take photos in the house without the “express permission” of the Speaker so it’s a matter of misconduct. In other words the photo was taken but without permission.
    He then says that from the angle of the shot you can see that it was taken from the PPM section. So Bush admits that the photo was taken in the chamber.
    He then goes on to say that the photo was doctored but provides no evidence at all for that assertion. He knows nothing about IT and obviously thinks that photoshopping is easy and simple. It isn’t.

    • Anonymous says:

      Did you even read the article? It clearly states that CIGTV from that day proves he wasn’t sleeping.

      • Anonymous says:

        If you read the article it in fact clearly states that he was not sleeping during a particular session on the day that the picture was supposedly taken. That does not in fact rule out the possibility of the picture being genuine.

    • Carl says:

      Did you not read the article? It clearly states that the CIGTV cameras proves he was at no point sleeping. Wow. Black and white evidence in front of you but still in denial. Not surprising.

  5. Anonymous says:

    Man unna guys could a lease put annoda pension in dey f po ol mac.

  6. Anonymous says:

    THAT is one heck of a photoshop job if it is one.

    • Anonymous says:

      You mean first he goes to court for gambling with the country’s money, then he gets his photo taken fast asleep in the LA, and now he’s lying about it and trying to make someone else look bad to cover his own a**? Is THAT what we should be expecting from our forewa honerable ex premier?

  7. Anonymous says:

    who said caymanians were lazy or have a poor work ethic????????

    • Alarm clock says:

      The sad thing is, even though he is fast asleep, he is still out thinking the others. You wake him up you like him down what a hard man feh dead.

    • So many trolls make the same kind of comments and it just makes you look silly. All of my co-workers are Caymanian and I would never describe them as lazy.
      As any employer will tell you the issues we have here are around education levels and availability of state sponsored training programs to ready people for the available careers. The private sector in a capitalist society is centered around making profits (these profits translate into revenue for govt through duty and fees) it should be the role of govt to use those funds to prepare, train and educate its electorate to take advantage of the available opportunities – this is where the system is failing its people. Big mac and his fellow elected representatives have been asleep at the wheel for decades – the sooner they realise that education, more education and then a bit more education is the way to go to further the wealth and well being of their people – the better!

    • Anonymous says:

      Some dimwit expat looking for a job.

    • Anonymous says:

      To be honest, it is wrong to stereotype. I have a couple in the office who turn up and work fairly proficiently.

  8. Anonymous says:

    This is quite funny. The global spotlight is on the Cayman Islands right now because of FIFA, and this will be the first thing an outsider sees when they pull up the local news.

  9. Bluff Patrol says:

    > he warned members that if they ever think McKeeva Bush is asleep they are mistaken.

    So he never ever sleeps.

    What’s that saying? “The D____ never sleeps.”


  10. Anonymous says:

    Not only is he sleeping but most likely dreaming that he just won the jackpot in Vegas…

  11. Anonymous says:

    Whether or not the photo is genuine or photo-shopped is irrelevant and quite secondary to the real issues. If the Leader of the Opposition did indeed fall asleep in the LA Chamber surely he is not the first or only one. I distinctly recall observing Mr. Kurt Tibbetts fast asleep in LA sessions on a regular basis when he was Leader of Government Business – also he is not the only one. It must be recognized that LA meetings often go on for most of each day (when in session), well into the night and then again all the next day. That is quite taxing on anyone, especially persons who are clearly high in BMI.

    However, if the photo has been altered or not, the matter speaks to the puerile maliciousness which has been displayed by someone across aisle from the Leader of the Opposition (who perhaps took the photo) and those who circulated and published the photo on social media sites. At the very least, the Premier’s secretary is shown to be malicious, shallow and disrespectful of official elected posts.

    While we have serious issues with unemployment, crime, environmental matters, social decay, high cost of living, etc., etc., that persons in senior official positions of responsibility would choose to engage themselves in such juvenile activity speaks volumes of such people. That they appear to be affiliated with the PPM and the Premier (as leader of that party) has made no comment distancing himself and his party from such behaviour speaks volumes about him and his party’s professional morals (no suprise there). Another disappointment from Alden et al!

    Focus on the serious issues affecting these islands and leave this kind of fun-taking to Rundown!!

    Another disappointment from Alden et al! Caymanian politicians on all sides are an embarrassment. God forbid any of them would ever consider themselves statesmen!!!

    • BORN FREE says:

      It is so hypocritical of Bush & his two supporters that they are spending so much time complaining about this photo that has hurt Bush’s feelings, yet did not once complain, or have anything to say about the other photo posted on Facebook showing two government backbench members on their phones! The country has more serious issues to deal with, yet he wastes time crying about an unflattering photo of himself. Is he that self-obsessed? Why does Bush think that it was so wrong to take and share the photo of him but there is nothing wrong, no complaints, about the other photo of two members from the other side being taken & shared? Is it only wrong when it is done against him? For him, of all people, to complain about “WRONG DOING” is a joke, a massive joke! I suggest that he grows up, learns to take what he so often gives, or if he cannot do that then simply just get out of it, if he can’t take it anymore. Boo Hoo.

    • Bling Man says:

      I na consider them statesmen ether.

  12. CaymansList says:

    I find it incredibly interesting that even in the face of facts and CIGTV footage showing the picture was faked people who hate Bush would rather still believe it’s real and that he was asleep in the LA on that Day. No different than when he was proven not to have broken the law for using his CIG Card in those Casinos. If the money had not been paid back then it would have been a crime according to CIG policy at the time, yet people still chose to believe that he was guilty of a crime. This goes to prove that no matter if it’s wrong, right, legal or not, if the person is someone you don’t like you would rather they be condemned if they are guilt or not.

    If this case was switched around and the photo was of Alden, people would be blaming Bush for it and calling for investigations to prove he took the photo saying he should be barred from the LA.

    I must say this whole thing is making me believe more and more that there is something to the accusations of a conspiracy against Bush. The more I follow this whole political sage the more I am starting to truly believe this was all engineered to further embarrass him and distract from his accusations which people are working desperately at sweeping under the rug in lieu of facing them head on like an innocent man would do. Like Bush Did

    • Anonymous says:

      ‘Was asleep on that day’, answered your own question there buddy, the point being that he was asleep at some stage for the picture to have been manipulated. Could it have been before or after the cameras were switched on, could it have been another day in the LA, could it have been a momentary lapse not caught on the TV camera? These are questions that have not been fully answered.
      Or are you suggesting that Photoshop can magically enhance a picture to fake an obviously sleep induced relaxation, if so, please enlighten me because it can’t be done on mine.
      And for good measure, it matters not that something is written in law, as a sworn public servant he should abide by a moral and ethical code of conduct in his official capacity or when dealing with public funds and interests.
      If he were asleep in the chamber, those who posted or passed on the picture in good faith were acting in the public interest.

    • Anonymous says:

      Please explain how the lectern and the microphone have been superimposed across his body and his head. And how do you account for the obvious crumpling of the jacket shoulder pad and the sleeve as the head rests upon it? To arrange the detail in such a manner is very skilful and beyond a simple smartphone or home editing suite.
      This isn’t Photoshopped, period!
      But for fun, let’s further expand the delusional paranoia of Bush and his dead head followers. If, (and it’s a very big if) this photograph is a montage, then it has been done with a very sophisticated piece of software to just to account for the simple examples above.
      But in reality that just isn’t feasible, because the question would be why? Why would anyone really bother to go to that length for a dozy picture, why not a picture that is far more damaging?
      If there was a campaign to smear Bush, I am sure that with the resources available to both the CI and UK Governments he would be history by now.
      But all of this is easily proven should Bush have the courage to check the technical data associated with the picture. But so far, neither he or CNS have come up with conclusive technical proof that this is not an original.

    • Anonymous says:

      Was it his money? No.

      Can you sleep whilst at work and get a salary or double salary for it? No.

      No wonder the Islands started sliding down the pan years ago with people out there who think this is ok!

  13. Anonymous says:

    We’re paying him (twice) to do nothing anyway, doesn’t matter if he’s asleep or awake. At least he’s not talking when he’s asleep.

  14. Anonymous says:

    Ahh that familiar face… I remember when he came to my graduation and fell asleep like that. My parent just shook their head. I still can not get how this man keeps getting in. Unfortunately with the incompetency of whats her name from west bay, Im sure he’s a shoe in . Such a shame, of how we wanted fresh young blood and have gotten knowing from them. One has her goals on micro managing with no results, her assistant is a joke.. Im sure he will return to his law office. Another one lives on Facebook and adds no real value, just brings up controversial stuff with no real solutions… such a shame, all this ‘talent’ with no real value. These clowns actually make Kenneth look like a champ

  15. Anonymous says:

    That picture is definitely not photoshopped.

  16. Anonymous says:

    I HAD A DREAM and in that dream he said …….

  17. Pogo says:

    As the other poster said, CNS is stating as a fact that it is Photoshopped – may be an idea to explain why you think that. Pretty clever Photoshopping given the lectern and microphone in between the camera and the subject, and the body posture. They not only took an upright person wide awake and converted it to a slumped person asleep, but did so whilst preserving the overlapping foreground ? Have you checked the meta data on the raw image? Unless you have, or have watched every minute of the TV coverage and ensured that the TV coverage covers from start to finish, then I suspect you have an unPhotoshopped image, but of course it mya have been taken on a different occasion.

  18. Anonymous says:

    All Bush has to do to prove that the image has been tampered with is to provide the original picture of him “resting” in this position. I will be amazed if he can.

  19. Anonymous says:

    I’ve blown up the image and find no evidence that it was photoshopped. I believe it to be genuine and I also think that the words “allegedly photoshopped’ should appear in the story.
    Bush has form in the area of IT. Remember that he has no idea what a ‘blogger’ is and he probably doesn’t know what ‘photoshopped’ means either.

  20. Anonymous says:

    Put slot machines in the LA if you want to keep him awake.

    • Anonymous says:

      Just one? Doesn’t he play four at a time?

      • Anonymous says:

        but that would be illegal, but using government funds to gamble and then using gambling proceeds to repay the money 3 years late is not.

        I wonder if Webb quickly pays back all the alleged bribes if the FBI will let him off all charges?

  21. Mr. Clean says:

    The Honourable ex-premier implies it’s a “deliberate attack to bring ridicule on me,” and “make him look as bad as possible”. Maybe so, but it isn’t necessary. He’s doing that all by himself.

  22. Michel says:

    Them chairs way too comfortable. I was NOT sleeping just had my eyes closed. It’s another Conspiracy…

  23. Anonymous says:

    The class that a press secretary shows by sending this to a news outlet speaks volumes to the childish and irresponsible nature of the leadership of this country. With the issues that this country has, taking the time to photograph and distribute a picture of this taste is absolutely shameful. It is no wonder the UK treats Cayman like an unwanted pest. Acts like this do nothing but put less and less credibility and faith in the government as a whole. Furthermore, show me one senior citizen that has not dozed off in the afternoon and I will show you a snowman on smb. What a waste. Get your act together.

    • Anonymous says:

      I’m glad this is circulating. For mid-six figure comp, there are no MLAs that should be napping on our time. Not one. Any empty chairs or snoozing MLAs should be exposed and shamed – that you and others feel that louts should be held to a more lenient standard is, frankly, appalling to me. If a Director did that in a Board Meeting – they’d be canned.

    • SSM345 says:


      “speaks volumes to the childish and irresponsible nature of the leadership of this country”

      Really? Is falling asleep at your job not irresponsible? Especially when you are a supposed “Leader”.

      “With the issues that this country has”

      So why is he sleeping then?

      “Acts like this do nothing but put less and less credibility and faith in the government as a whole.”

      Yep, I do not expect someone collecting CI$15K+ a month to be sleeping on the job, EVER.

      “show me one senior citizen that has not dozed off in the afternoon”

      I can show you none that dosed off on the job, because they no longer have one. And a “senior citizen” is deemed as someone who is 65+, why is he working? That’s retirement age.

  24. Anonymous says:

    It’s quite sickening that Certain people are so desperate to bring down Mac that they will stoop so low. Shame on you Alden, shame on you Tammy and shame on you David. We need to find out who took the picture. Why is that person not man or woman enough to admit it. Shame on you again.

  25. Anonymous says:

    Peoples Photoshop Movement …

  26. Anonymous says:

    But it’s ok for him to blame and be rude to people. it’s alright as long as he is not the target?

  27. Anonymous says:

    C’mon just let sleeping dogs lie.

  28. Anonymous says:

    A master strategist at work. No one can deny it was photoshopped because to do so would require an admission of taking it.

  29. Anonymous says:

    stop wasting the people’s time, bush. Government time should not be wasted on talking about pictures.

  30. Anonymous says:

    CNS states the picture was photoshopped. Has CNS made its own analysis?

    • Anonymous says:

      How can CNS state this is a photoshopped image? If they are journalist they should be reporting only the facts. CNS should be reporting that Mac claims this is a photoshopped image.

    • SSM345 says:

      Mac told the world it was photo shopped, so it must be right?

  31. Anonymous says:

    The country is safer while he is asleep

  32. Anonymous says:

    This amounts to much ado about nothing. A childish prank that does not rise to the level of debate. While I don’t condone this silliness, politicians have to expect being pranked and, yes, even ridiculed, albeit in a childish way.

    As for the Compass’ editorial on it — an example of the heights of that publication’s journalistic standards that we are daily being treated to.

  33. WideAwake says:

    “I know it’s not right,”
    — McKeeva Bush

    Huh? How can he claim to know right from wrong after using his government credit card for personal spending (to the tune of about a half million) and then demand that over-worked civil servants waste their time to do the reconciliation.

  34. Anonymous says:

    Where is the hard evidence that this picture is in any way Photoshopped, we only have McKeeva’s conspiratorial word for it?

  35. Anonymous says:

    Wa ah see happnin…

  36. Anonymous says:

    But he is asleep, whether on the day in question or not?

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