How bad things are when people who live in an English-speaking country don’t understand English

Published: May 16, 2016 at 11:26pm

And it’s even worse when they are aides to the Prime Minister of Malta, which sells itself as a destination for the teaching of English as a foreign language. One aide to the Prime Minister, on his ill-produced and ill-conceived ‘blokk’, has written an entire post accusing me to his followers of having said that Keith Schembri (the Prime Minister’s chief of staff, who works out of the same building as Bedingfield) should be shot.

Cue a litany of morons, saying that I should be reported to the police, to the Cyber Crime Unit, that this is a crime and a threat, and so on. There are no limits to idiocy, made more pathetically ruinous by the inability of these poorly educated people to wrap their heads around idiomatic English. People living in Italy or Germany can be excused for not getting past the basics in English. People living on an island which was a British colony for 165 years, and where English sits with Maltese as an official language, have NO such excuse.

“He/she/they should be taken out and shot” is a standard, frequently used idiomatic expression with which these losers are clearly unfamiliar. I can’t say I blame those of his followers who speak nothing but Maltese (and badly at that), but an aide to the Prime Minister should have a better level of education and speak, write and understand proper English instead of the sort of English that Matteo Renzi speaks.

No, I did not say that somebody should shoot Keith Schembri, you twits. Though quite frankly, you should be talking about how best to get rid of him yourself before he brings your entire ship down with his suspicious offshore operations.

How about explaining to your followers, Bedingfield, what it means when the Prime Minister’s chief of staff is discovered (to his deep and abiding horror) to have four offshore companies in Panama, Cyprus, the British Virgin Islands and Gibraltar? And those are just the ones we have rooted out so far.

Ah, but you can’t do that, can you, because they’re paying you to be their mouthpiece. I think you should be taken out and shot.

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25 Comments Comment

  1. may borg says:

    The best comment is the one suggesting that Keith Schembri should seek legal advice.

    Yes, and while he is at his lawyer he should seek some advice on how he’s going to dig himself out of the mess he has put himself and the country in.

  2. Joe Fenech says:

    Clearly, Schembri is being defended, because he is the de facto prime minister; if he goes, the party will collapse.

    • Daphne Caruana Galizia says:

      No, Muscat’s cabal will collapse, and the party will regenerate.

      • Catsrbest says:

        How can a party full of fools and idiots regenerate? The party delegates elect a leader that is simply a carbon copy of what most of them are. Most of them, if not all, are very happy that Joseph Muscat is their leader. This island is simply doomed.

  3. Godfrey Leone Ganado says:

    What a bunch of idiotic fools. No wonder Labour is in government.

  4. Mary T. O`Cracy says:

    I wonder what will they make of the idiomatic expression “the shit hit the fan”.

  5. Odyssey says:

    Given that Keith Schembri is exposed to these serious threats, he can recycle and hire a few bodyguards from his deceased friend Gaddafi. After all, he has the same mindset.

    His security details should not be subject to any budget limits. He is more important than Ira Losco.

  6. Joe Fenech says:

    F’kaz ta’ “flogging a dead horse” u “fish out of water”, cemplu lil tal-SPCA u lill-pulizija.

  7. seen it all says:

    No, it’s not a hunch. That was his intention. Pure and simple.

  8. C Camilleri says:

    Daphne, I suggest Glenn Beddingfield is ignored. All he wants us to do is go through his blogs and waste time commenting about them instead of focussing on the more important mess the government is doing.

  9. Joe Saliba says:

    Ma naħsibx jistgħu ‘jisparawlu’. Imma jtugħ bix-xabla (jew sejf ) jistgħu. Staqsu lil Chris. Jekk ma jtugħx xi sitt tiri bħal Anġlu. Jew joqtluh b’xi ittra anonima.

  10. Daphne Caruana Galizia says:

    Please note that this portal is not somebody’s Facebook Timeline or the comments board at Malta Today and Glenn Bedingfield’s ‘blokk’. If you have nothing intelligent or amusing to say, go and play somewhere else.

  11. Daphne Caruana Galizia says:

    They’re subliterate. The fact that many people can speak only Maltese does not mean that they speak Maltese well. I can’t say this enough. People living on the council estates in Greater Manchester speak only English, but their English is disastrous. These are the Maltese equivalent. They are really annoyed at the fact that my Maltese is far better than theirs, and they can’t understand that it’s because the people from whom I picked it up, growing up, are educated.

  12. Daphne Caruana Galizia says:

    They wouldn’t have reacted at all. They all think that ‘guts’ (spelled gazz) means brazen nerve of a certain kind, and would never imagine that the word actually means intestines. And they will never have heard of garters, and so have to look it up in an English dictionary, which will present some problems.

    It took them a long while to understand that Borg Cardona’s “onanist” reference to the Prime Minister was actually as big an insult as “mother**ker”, because the word was completely new to them. Glenn and his trolls rode right past it until somebody posted a comment suggesting that he looks it up. Then they went nuts, but still couldn’t probably work out its exact meaning.

  13. Daphne Caruana Galizia says:

    No, they would take it as an offer of pork chops. It’s one of the most popular cuts of meat among people like that and they all know the word.

  14. tinnat says:

    Dead in the water.

  15. Benny Hill says:

    One telling comment in that post on GLANN’s blog is that by ‘Abuirba’, in response to Stephen Bonello’s comment.

    Because Bonello put forward a well-reasoned argument in proper English, in an attempt to explain that Daphne didn’t literally mean that Keith Schembri should actually be shot, he is branded full of himself (rasek kbira). A good segment of the population see the ability to reason clearly and to make judgements based on knowledge and information, as something negative. And this is largely a symptom of the generalised ignorance in the country, were being a backward hick is promoted, while being analytical, cultured, well-informed and European is discouraged.

    This is one of the main reasons why these types of people don’t like Daphne, and why they vote Labour.

  16. c calafato says:

    Maybe when we say “raining cats and dogs” they really believe it.

  17. GerrG01 says:

    The people commenting of Glen Bedingfield’s blog – the ones so easily gulled – remind me of the ones collected on

    It collects Facebook comments of people who believe that the articles from satire newspaper ‘The Onion’ and other sites are true.

  18. U Le! says:

    So we cannot shoot anyone but we can axe them.

  19. NLC says:

    And clearly, the last person writing on the post “Rayham” is that short for Ray Il Hammalu?

  20. Carol Cassar says:

    Hadd minn dawn in-nies sewwa ma talab Iil xi wiehed mill-hames kummissarji li kellna taht Joseph Muscat biex jinvestiga lil Keith schembri.

  21. Thomas Rubicon says:

    If there ever was a chance to turn the Labour Party into a respectable contender to the Nationalist Party’s 25 year period of government, surely it should have been Dr. Muscat.

    All that pipe dream was blown away by the constant gaffes and scandals wafting through these blessed islands for the last 3 years.

    • Daphne Caruana Galizia says:

      A ‘gaffe’ is an unintentional act or remark which causes embarrassment. It is not a deliberate, planned act of crooked behaviour.

      ‘Gaffe’ used in this context is Maltese (very bad) English and worse, it downplays the seriousness of what is happening.

      And I’m afraid you are completely wrong. Muscat could never have been a rival to Fenech Adami and Gonzi, and that much was apparent to all sane and intelligent people before March 2013. Muscat did not come out of nowhere, though those who drift through life in Malta appear to believe that he did. He has been in the Labour Party, working for years as a Super One reporter and apparatchik, since he was 18. And he was the lead campaigner against EU membership.

  22. A.Vella says:

    And found wanting.

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