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Study of 1 t street,
162, ,ast ?5 10021,
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WEEKLY REVIEW F As
AM^ BA LWOA r IA 91 AiKD 4IPMA
DURING the last seven
days, political focus in the
country has fixed on inter-
nal conflict in the Tapia
House Movement. On
Saturday December 31,
the New Year Edition of
the Sunday Guardian re-
ported a split in the party
between a Denis Solomor,
faction and a Lloyd Best
On Tuesday, The Guar-
dian carried an interview
with Lloyd Best who
cleared up errors in the
Best told the Guardian
that Tapia had had the
valid fiction in its New Year
Literary Supplement, fic
tion by masters of poetry
and prose. The Sunday
Guardian's rumours, he
said, could easily have been
put to the test by reading
the publications ol Tapia.
Best denied the existence
of any factions lining up
behind Denis Solomon and
CALYPSO AS THEATRE
He admitted that there
existed fundamental con-
flict, that the conflict had
raged for full three years?
and that, at bottom, it
divided those who per-
ceived the need for a
political party and those
content with the armchair
politics of o1d.
Best claimed that-he had
become a Bobolee in the
conflict especially since he
had resigned his job and
had thrown his weight on
the 'side of those
foot-soldiers who had given
up everything .they had in
the cause of a New World
in Trinidad and Tobago.
Best told the Guardian
that the old armchair poli-
tics was nowadays quite
loosely described as charis-
matic politics which really
meant relying on magic
rather than work. Every-
body was looking for a
man to whip up ar. easy
crowd and so deliver them
from their sins when all
they had to do was to take
up their beds and walk.
Reporting from the docu-
ments, the Guardian re-
peated some of the back
page story carried in Tapia
of Novemlier 21, 1976,
following the second sitting
of the Annual General
Assembly on November 14.
Three constitutional pro-
posals were brought to the
public notice. The first
came from the Tunapuna
Constituency, the second
from a Comrhittetsspeak-.
ing through Frank Solomon.
the third from Port-of-Spain
West speaking through
On Wednesday January
4, the Guardian reported
a Cascade meeting of
Monday%- uary 2, at
which a decision was said
to have been taken to form
a new party which would
put Frank Solomon in the
Viaddle and leave Best alone
with his marbles.
On Thursday January 5,
Tapia received a press
release from a group of
four election candidates
denying that their Cascade
meeting on Monday had
mooted any new party.
(See back page).
On the same day, Lloyd
Best received a note from
16 people requesting the
Executive of Tapia to call
a meeting of the member-
ship in an Extraordinary
General Assembly. The
note came on two scraps
Best On His Own
LAST Deceriber 5,,the
Third Sitting of the Annual
General Assembly of Tapia
broke up when Secretary
Lloyd Best walked out say-
ing that from the next day,
he was "on my own scene",
Before the Sitting had
actually begun, Chairman
Denis Solomon left on the
ground that the meeting
could conduct no serious
Solomon claimed that
the small attendance was
not due solely to the heavy
rains that morning.
The Tembership, claimed
Solomon, had lost .con-
fidence in the Executive.
The National Executive
of Tapia at that time con-
sisted of Denis Solomon,
Junior Wiltshire, Lloyd Best,
Ivan Laughlin, Allan Harris,
Beau Tewarie,. Lloyd Tay-
lor, Arthur Atwell, Michael
Harris, Billy Montague,
Dennis Pantin, Syl Lowhar,
Hamlet Joseph, Dalton
O'Neil, and Angela Cropper.
Solomon declared that
he was going to resign.
In the ensuing discussion
and division, the Chairman
was outvoted and the
meeting was called to order
by Vice-Chairman Junior
Towards the end of the
day, the meeting built up
greatly on the start
Since the Assembly,
Solomon has written a
letter to the Secretary,
resigning his post.
INSIDE THIS ISSUE
See Pages 6 & 7
- Mirror of Haiti
Pages 5 & 8
A yU m
THE Tapia Edition of Sunday January 23 will contain a
Special Supplement on the Construction Industry.
Focus of the reporting will be on
The Scale of Construction set by the 1977 Budget
Factors Retarding work in Construction
The N -.d for Organised 'Apprenticeship in Con-
The Crisis in I losing
The Boom in Real Fstate Prices
Bank Liquidity and thle Mortgage Crisis
The Impact o; Big ( overnment Projects.
'The Edition will) n:tua;ll. appear on tlie streets on I id;iy
VVL~t-KL.T MV I
~ 4 W,
TEL.::662-5 AND 22 CI N
PAGE 2 TAPIA SUNDAY JANUARY 9, 1976
FROM whichever viewpoint one
cares to look, for the peoples of
the Caribbean the year 1976
brought few tidings of joy.. By
year's end, the clouds of disaster
had gathered darkly over the
entire region and one had to look
hard for the freshening winds of
By year's end all the pro-
blems of the Caribbean condition,
political, economic, social and
psychological, had strengthened
their hold on the region while the
possibilities for meaningful change
all seemed to have been frittered
This is not to say that the year
had started with a clean slate. The
problems faced by the countries of
the region were stark and resistant to
any simple solutions.
The economies of the region,
were, as they have always been, highly
vulnerable to the mildest of changes
in the international economy. Ever
since 1973 most of them had found
themselves reeling under the severe
impact of the international economic
All the old problems of unem-
ployment, poverty, inequality and
slow economic growth were com-
Spounded by massive inflation, reduced
export earnings, and persistent balance.
of payments crises.
Translated into figures, the
reality that the region faced at the
beginning of 1976 was of an un-
/ employment rate of well over 15%. In
addition, it was estimated that if the
region was to attain anything like full
employment by 1980, then we would
need:to create the staggering figure of
about i00,000'obs per year,
Of equally depressing significance
were the figures which showed that
the regional food import bill had
jumped from EC$550 million in 1973
to over EC $1 billion in 1974. This,
with no prospects for any improve-'
ment, and in the context of a situation
in which over 40% of the Region's
population were badly nourished.
As always the bald economic
figures were given poignant life in the
harsh realities of social conditions.
Throughout the region development
plans were abandoned, production
levels deteriorated, the gap between
the rich and the poor widened, and
the spectre of social unrest and
: violence reared its ugly head.
Last year brought with it no
relief from this dismal picture of
economic deterioration and collapse.
The limited recovery in the industrial-
ised nations was too weak to be felt in
Not only did inflation continue
to grow but by the middle of the
year the boom in the world price of
sugar, which had brought some relief
in the previous two years, was over
and the regional 'economies stared
disasterin the face.
And as though to deny any hope
Sfor the future the end of the year saw
a further increase in the price of oil
which, whatever the ramifications in
the long run, spelt only more inflation
and desperation for 1977.
The experience of Jamaica is
typical,of the enormous problems
faced by the Caribbean economies.
Ever since the middle of 1975 Jamaica
has been struggling, desperately with
the effeots'of mounting inflation on
Sono hand and reduced export earnings
on the other.
In 1973 when the world average
I ialationary growth was 9.6% Jamaica
- -1- '
was experiencing a rate of 19.2%. By
1974 Jamaica's inflation rate had
leaped to 27.2%.
By a series of measures taken in
mid-1975 Jamaica was able to reduce
the inflationary rate for that year to an
average of 17.4%. One of the main ele-
ments of its anti-inflationary struggle
was a lifting of import restrictions.
But by 1975 Jamaica's export
earnings had begun to experience a
sharp decline. Sugar prices had begun
to dip. The demand for bauxite
declined in the wake of the recession
in North America and the huge infla-
tionary rate had served to curtail
capital investment and production
rates had declined.
In this context, the lifting of
the import restrictions produced a
run on Jamaica's foreign reserves. From
a net position of J$ 14 million in
July of 1975 Jamaica's reserves
plunged to some J$ 36 million in
April of 1976 and by June they were
completely wiped out forcing Prime
Minister Manley into a mad scramble to
seek financial assistance. f
Temporary relief was obtained
from a number of sources including
some J$ 70 million from Trinidad
(lent at actual World Bank rates) and
a total of J$ 26.5 million in Special
Drawing rights from the IMF.
In spite of this, however, the
drain on reserves continued. By the
end of the year it was estimated that
the foreign reserves deficit totalled
more that J$ 100 million and Jamaica
was faced with the prospect of finding
some J$ 170 million in loans in 1977.
By the end of the year too, the
Jamaican story was clearly being re-
peated up and down the Caribbean
with only minor variations on the
In the non-english speaking
Caribbean, The Dominican Republic's
whole economy was thrown into chaos
with the decline in sugar prices, and
even in Cuba which sells more than
half of its sugar output to the Soviet
Union at far higher' prices than free
market rates, strict austerity measures
were introduced and a ban placed on
the purchase of capital goods from
hard currency sources.
Guyana also faced the decline
in the demand for bauxite brought
about by the stocks piled up by the
companies before nationalisation as
well as by the recession in North
From a level of G$ 256 million
in 1975 Guyana's reserves had fallen
to about G$ 70 million by the end of
By that time Prime Minister
Forbes Burnham was already warning
the country of the need for a drastic
reduction in many of the welfare and
subsidy programs which were in
In Barbados at the end of the
Year, the new Government under Tom
Adams had to beg a loan from the IMF
of some B$ 10.6 million to cover the
foreign reserves deficit brought about
by sharply declining sugar prices.
But if the larger islands of the
Caribbean were suffering one could
well imagine what was taking place in
the archipelago of poverty, the Leeward
and Windward Islands.
Heavily dependent upon both
Sugar and tourism, and with a history
throughout the seventies in which
consumption spending exceeded Gross
Domestic Product, these islands were
in such desperate financial straits that
some Governments had to borrow
merely, to meet normal recurrent
expenditure such as civil service
The effects of this tale of econ-
omic woe in hunian terms needs no
elaboration. 200.000 people unem-
ployed. A large percentage of them in
the age group 15 to 25. The enduring
and widening poverty. The resort to
violence or madness in its many guises.
All these manifestations are visible
throughout the Caribbean.
But the implications of econ-
omic collapse for the region are wider
and deeper than this- For implicit in
the social confusion and human despair
caused by the economic problems are
the possibilities either for the flourish-
ing of a new initiative bent on the
task* of reconstruction or for the
complete disintegration of the social
At the beginning of 1976 both
these possibilities existed. For the
year held in store elections in a num-
ber of Caribbean countries. On the
other hand, if no solution was to be
found to the problems of the coun-
tries and the slide into social disintegra-
tion continued then as we had already
been warned the possibility of recolon-
isation was but one of a series of
By the end of the year, elections
had been held in Antigua, Barbados,
Trinidad, Grenada, and Jamaica in the
English speaking Caribbean, as well as
in Cuba. In the main it cannot be said
that .any of the elections in the
English speaking Caribbean served to
throw up any fresh initiative.
Even where the Government
changed, the elections served to re-
entrench the Old Regime of politicians
who had risen/to power in the fifties
and early sixties; and who had for a
long time amply demonstrated a
chronic incapacity to handle the
urgent tasks of economic and political
The two islands where there
were changes of: Governments 'were
Antigua and Barbados. In Antigua the
victory of Vere Bird over the one-term
Government of George Walters can
hardly be said to be a radical trans-
formation. Prior to his defeat in the
last election Bird had presided over
the fortunes of Antiguans for twenty-
Thrown out five years ago when
the collapse of the sugar industry
brought Antigua to the blink of
bankruptcy, and when the tales of
of corruption in the ranks of his Gov-
ernment grew too numerous to be
stomached any further, Bird's return
cannot but raise serious doubts in the
minds of serious people throughout
Helped by the economic distress
caused by massive inflation and drast ic-
ally curtailed earnings froit tourism,
Antigua's chief foreign currency.
earner, Bird. campaigned on the.
promise to abolish income taxes.
That he has now kept his
promise is hardly a cause for joy. Not
if. we choose to recall that Bird was
the one who first introduced the
Casino into Antigua. A Casino which
brought some measure of notoriety to
Antigua when the Valachi papers re-
vealed that it was owned and operated
by the Mafia.
In Barbados, the DLP under Mr.
Errol Barrow was defeated for the
first time in fifteen years and replaced
by the BLP under Mr. Tom Adams. In
an interview after his election victory
Adams, who calls himself to be a
"Democratic Socialist", declared that
"We may have the possibility of
establishing Barbados as a tax haven
similar to Bermuda, Panama, etc."
In the same interview he went
on to reject the suggestion that coun-
tries like Guyana and Jamaica had
anything to teach Barbados in terms of
political and economic policies. But
apart from declaring support for the
idea of Caribbean economic integra-
tion, Adams had nothing to say about
the condition of the region and no
plans for any new initiative. ,
Yet, if in Antigua and Barbados
the changes seemed only to bring
more of the same, at least we must
recognize that the people in those
countries at least had the will to
change and to look for something
If in the expression of this will
their range of choice was limited then
the blame can only fall on those ele-
ments who see the necessity for a
radical reconstruction in the Caribbean
for not having done whatever was
necessary to make themselves credit-
In the other Caribbean islands
which had elections however not even
so minimal a change was forthcoming.
With the possible exception of Grenada,
nowhere could one discern the faint-
est advance of those forces espousing
a new initiative.
In Grenada, while Gairy retained
the Government, the emergence of the
New Jewel Movement as the major
force in the. combined opposition is of
The NJM is part of the new
movement in the Caribbean which
emerged during, the latesixties, and
which has since then been the catalyst
for upheaval and political agitation in
every island of the region.
Yet while the NJM certainly
moved through the phases of Black
Power and Marxism, they have over
thepast couple of years tended more
and more to avoid ideological ortho-
doxy and to concentrate their atten-
tion on the particular elements of
Grenada's economic and social con- t -
In so doing, they were not loatlhe- .
to join witlh the more tradition.l
opposition o Gairy's totally c'-rrui. -
and brutally repressive rule. Tl)i. hai*-..
culminated ,4i their present P- *'.. 1f,-
the opposition alliance which. it i an
SUNDAY JANUARY 9, 1976 TAPIA PAGE 3
I WAS the last to come in
to the dressing-r-oom. There
was a strong smell of
embrocation in the air. My
teammates were arguing
joking and making a lot of
noise. The coach shut the
door to keep the reporters
"Just a minute, please',
I settled down on i
bench in the corner, near
the showers. The wan after-
noon light filtered in
through the windows
through which just a bit of
sky was still visible. We
could hear the roar of the
crowd leaving the Stadium.
The coach was making the
rounds of the room telling
each of us "Okay now, okay.
After all, we won. ." When
he reached me "Cheerup" he
said, patting me on the back,
"don't be so flrd on yourself.
None of the goals was your
fault. Nobody could save
He moved away to con-
gratulate Echevarria who had
scored the winning goal.
Some of the others had
finished showering by this
time. They walked past me
Has-Been Before Time
towelling themselves dry and
throwing the drops of water
everywhere. I hadn't moved
or changed position.
The strong smell of embro-
cation resurfaced. Pablo was
massaging Echevarria who had
got a nasty knock and was now
stretched out on the table. He
was insisting that he wasn't
feeling any pain but Pablo
preferred not to take any
Eventually, the reporters
were allowed in. A tape
recorder was set up on one end
of the bench and a reporter
began by putting several ques-
tions to the coach. Some of
the others spread out and
began to interview my team-
Echevarria pointed at me
once or twice while a tall; fair-
haired reporter scribbled
feverishly into a note-pad.
They laughed together and
then the reporter shook
Echevarria's hand and said
aloud: "Great goal, that .."
Then, he looked around the
Earl Best Translates
room and ambled over to me.
"Hi," he said. I knew him;
Id seen him here several times
before. He was Echevarria's pal.
"Echevarria's told me that
you couldn't get the ones that
got by you today, eh?"
"Don't you think that the
"No; I was well positioned.
A defender blinded me."
"He moved off to join the
little knot of players and re-
porters that stood listening to
the coach. The reporters fired
an endless stream of questions
at him, not always waiting for
whoever happened to be speak-
ing to finish.
His answers were always
quick in coming. The micro-
phone was passed to Echevarria
and when he was finished
speaking that reporter said
goodbye and, waving at us,
left the dressing-room. Through
the open door I saw a group
of people waiting.
"We want Echevarria!"
they chorused. An attendant
/ slammed the door shut.
Cose by, some of my mates
were chatting with a couple of
friends. Not many because the
rules were very strict. Echevarria
was with three who patted
him affectionately on the
back. He got up and dis-
appeared into the showers.
Though only 20, he was
Already an international, play-
ing on the second team. All
their eyes followed him as he
walked and then one of them
took out a tobacco pouch and
offered it to his two com-
I began to strip off my
wrist bandages. Slowly. My
face, I noticed was dirty and
my knees, muddy and bloody,
were covered with scratches
The turf had been repaid
and the playing surface was
very soft. There were chunks
of thick reddish mud sticking
to the bottom of my boots. I
banged them on the floor and
left a lite scattering of dust
I took off my jersey and flung
it onto a bench. It smelled
sweaty. Some of the others
were leaving now, along with'
the last of the reporters and
their friends. Everytime the
door opened, the group out-
side yelled: "Echevarria, Eche-
varria .' ."
I wgs not called in the
dressing' room. It had been
some time since the crowd had
left the Stadium and I could
no longer hear their character-
istic rumble. I undressed, grab-
bed my towel and went into
Back out, I sat down in my
corner and dried myself slowly.
A director had just come in.
With a smile he shook the
coach's hand. Then he turned
towards those who were left in
"Well, my boys, you'll all
get the usual bonus."
"Raaay! 'I we exclaimed
He went over to Echevarria
and showered congratulations
on him, as he smiled and
I began to put my clothes
The others had almost all
gone. Just Echevarria (who
was combing his hair) and the
director remained, chatting
with the coach.
As I was putting my shirt
on, Echevarria called to me
from the door: "Coming,
"No, ne. . 'm going
"Okay, see you tomorrow
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He said goodbye to the
coach and director and left,
his friends tagging along behind
him A volley of hurrahs went
up from the crowd that had
been waiting for him.
They asked him for auto-
graphs and tried to carry him
on their shoulders.
The door was closed and
their shouts died down slowly.
"So long," said the coach
and he left as the director
came towards me.
"Fine goal, Echevarria's,
eh?" he said "He's a really
good player. A good boy...
Did you notice now they
were waiting for him?"
"Yeah . all of us have
had our chance to be waited
"Sure, sure... By the way,
I took my comb out of my
coat pocket, ran my fingers
through my hair.. They were
coarse and dusty.
"See here, Rovira, would
you drove in at my W ffiWe.
tomorrow? I've to talk to
He was shorter than me, not
too much hair. He was puffing
on a cigarette.
"Something in particular" I
"Yes... Ive been meaning
to talk to you for sore time
"Yeah... I understand...
Nobody could get the ones that
they scored today.
"Sure, sure; of course'. ."
"Even the coach said so."
"Sure . it's not that' '
"How old are you, Rovira?"
"Thirty-five". I said, after a
He blew out a mouthful of
smoke, blew away the (ashes
and then without looking at
"That's old, you know, very
"I feel fine, better than
ever. I'm in good shape."
"Yes of course, of course
"Nobody could get today's
"The second one..."
"A defender Was blinding
Very well but . it could
have cost us the match."
"They were very good
shots; well placed."
"Thirty five years, Rovira,
are a lot for a footballer."
"Stanley Matthews was still
an international at 41".
"He's an exception."
"He plays out ... A goal-
keeper lasts longer. rm only
"That's old . a goal-
keeper is a key player, you've
got to admit. His mistakes are
definitive, there's no coming
back. .. You see that, Rovira.
"I said nothing. He took a
final drag and stepped on the
"But, what will 1 do now?".
I asked in a whisper. "If 1 am
"Oh you can probably sign
on with another team .. in a
lower division, naturally
Just the other dav in fact ...
"No, no; 1 prefer to hang
up my boots."
"As you wish.
"The bad thing is that 1
began to play very young. I
don't know anything else.'"
"Well, you must have a
little money saved, don't you?"
The director looked at me.
Continued on page t0
PAGE 4 TAPIA SUNDAY JANUARY, 1976
A scheme from since 1970
says Beau Tewarie
IN the 1977 Budget, we are
told that a short term
has been initiated in 1976
for unemployed 'o' level
We are not told that the
Prime-Minister first spoke
of this in 1970, after the
Black Power upheaval,
under the banner of 'Na-
The finest cuts
We are told that the com-
panies involved are Trintoc,
Tesoro, Fed, Chem., Tringen
and Amoco. We are not told
that, because of the nature of
these industries and the skills
they require, these companies
have always had an apprentice-
ship scheme as part of their
So that if government has
"initiated" anything, it can
only be in terms of negotiations
for an increased intake of
We are told that the petrol-
eum industry may provide
places for 230 apprentices. We
are not told if this is a yearly
figure or an end game.
We are told that the scope
of the apprenticeship scheme
is to be extended to include
industries in the private sector
(also mentioned in 1970) -
Neal and Massy, McEnearney;
Alstons, Dunlop, Caroni Ltd.,
the country private sector?!
We are not told that Caroni
Ltd. already has an apprentice:
ship programme and that Neal
and Massy are already involved
with Fatima College in a work/
The point about all of this is
that after the big gambage in
1970 about National Recon-
struction we have only now-
begun to do anything about
Secondly, according to the
proposal in the Budget, except
in"the oil based industries and
the larger -industries, an
would be virtually non-existent
in Trinidad aid Tobago for
some time yet.
This is so precisely because
the government has taken, and
it would seem, intends to take,
no initiative in the matter.
Where apprenticeship schemes
already exist, the government
seems willing to negotiate for
an increased intake.
Or where, as in large indus-
tries, apprenticeship presents
no difficulties, they are willing
to make token gestures.
Certainly there is nothing
wrong with building upon
what exists; or beginning in
those areas that would present
the least difficulty. But would
the government have us believe
that they are embarking on a
THERE are several things
wrong with the govern-
ments' proposals on
apprenticeship. The first
Angostura Old Oak Runm
A mellow blend of light
Trinidad rums. Smooth.
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new and immense scheme with
the greatest of difficulty, after
having studied matters very
The budget claims that an
initial recruitment of not less
than 700 would take place
through the programme
_advanced. One knows, instinct-
ively that this is an optimistic
estimate. Even so, however,
that still leaves, thousands out
in the cold.
And then the apprenticeship
scheme proposed in the 1977
Budget involves only 'o' level
graduates. 700 is a small per-
centage of those who pass 'o'
level, which is only 25% of
those who sit, which is an
insignificant number when one
considers the 0t,000 jobless in
this new (old) plan
problem with their scheme
is that it is 'o' level
The second is that it
focuses only on the Petrol-
eum sector and on large
Thirdly, despite the con-
struction of comprehensive
schools and proposed new cur-
ricula, the apprenticeship
scheme is still viewed as part of
_the post-secondary technical/
vocational programme to be
overseered by the National
Any combination of class-
room work .and on-the-job
training is spoken of in relation
to technical schools alone, and
this. in the vaguest of terms'.
In general however, the pro-
gramme of apprenticeship seems
to be viewed as a separate
Fourthly, there is no attempt
to uWe the apprenticeship
scheme as a mechanism for
change that could benefit the
nation as a whole.
The government's. ~prime
concern seems to be to fit the
apprenticeship scheme snugly
into the present system. No
attempt is made to integrate
it with the'-rest of the system,
it is merely accommodated in
the present scheme.
The ultimate aim seems to
be to ensure that the status quo
remains firmly intact.-
Perhaps the biggest problein:
in. the education system is the' .
problem of- '"wastage" so
deftly spoken of by the Prime
Wastage is a direct result of
the 'o' level focus in education
which designates 75% of those p.
sitting the exams as failures.
The apprenticeship system pro- ,'
posed in the Budget does not
Tackle this problem in any way.,
The crucial issue in education
in this country has always
been how to break out of the
'o' level "A' level syndrome.
When the first set of second- :
ary modern schools were built '.
in the early sixties, it was with
the intention of diversifying
after the third form.
Because no public education ;,
accompanied the introduction'
of' the new system however,
there was much public resistance.:
to diversification. '
In any case, no preparation .
was made for the transition- so-..
the easy solution became fivei-
year grammar schools and the
'o' level exams.
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Plenty thing wrong
I - -
THE life and work of Jacques
Roumain are the mirror of the
tragic history of Haiti.'The country
which so heroically produced the
first great slave revolution in
America continues to be today
a "blood-soaked sponge," as
Nicolas Guillen put it in his
moving Elegy to Roumain pub-
lished in 1948 as a posthumous
Tribute. Thirty two years after his
death, which occurred prema-
turely on August 18, 1944, the
S words of another poet, Roussan
Camille, can be repeated without
reservations: "The catastrophe
came at ten in the morning. The
greatest Haitian of our times had
died." His funeral entered the
realm of legend. That life and that
work not only irradiate an
exemplary timeliness; they also
encourage and alert for the defini-
tive 'liberation of the Haitians
from a horrendous dictatorship
of fascistic characteristics.
IN addition to being an
extraordinary writer of both
poetry and fiction, Roumain did
research and wrote monographs
in the social sciences which have
provided new conceptions of his
society. An ethnographer, his-
torian and archeologist, he
founded -the Institute of Ethnol-
ogy, the Bureau and Museum of
this discipline itnHaiti. But along
with all that literary and scienti-
fic activity, Roumain was also .a
person' of action, as one of the
outstanding young revolutionaries
of his time. -He founded the
Patriotic Youth League and was
Selected honorary president of the
Haitian Student Federation. His
S singular talent, placed at the
Service of the pQpular cause, com-
bined thought and action.
BORN in 1907 to a well-to-do
landowning, business family, he first
went to school in Port-au-Prince. He
continued his studies in several Euro-\
pean countries, learning English,
Spanish and German well. He returned
home and began the first stage of
intellectual struggle. He published
poems, stories, studies and translations
in La'Revue Indigene in 1927.
THE magazine served as a rally-
ing point for vanguard and progressive,
youth, and it began a decisive process
in cultural renovation. At the same
time, Roumain fought the Bornm dic-
tatorship which remained in power
from 1922 to 1927. The magazine
favored a national awakening of con-
sciousness. It waged campaigns against
assimilationism, that is, the ideology of
assimilation forged by a minority of
alienated intellectuals in the Antilles
and in African countries under Frernch
domination; The people who favored a
new cultural movement clashed with
the ironclad cosmopolites. Further-
more, they salvaged the.better part of
the African substratum, rejecting nega-
tive European influences and preserv-
ing the best of the African heritage.
BUT what singles out the young.
people around Jacques Roumain is an
event of a political nature: the United '
States military occupation between
Mirror Of The Tragic
History Of Haiti
1915 and 1934. That Was a turning
point in the history of the Haitian
people. Although Roumain conducted
a laudable effort along with his co-
workers on LA REVUE INDIGENE,
he realized that its scope was narrow
and he plunged, intrepidly, into
BECAUSE of its nature and
consequences, the occupation was a
trauma that would mark the Haitians
forever. Roumain's generation became
known as the"occupation generation".
He threw himself into the effort to
reconquer national sovereignty, vio-
lated and outraged by the US invaders.
It was at that time that he published
his first books with a marked inten-
tion of denouncing the sell-out oli-
THIS is the intention of the
stories and novelettes in THE PREY.
AND THE SHADOW (1930) and it
became even more marked in the
novel PUPPETS. At the same time, he
played an active part in the direct
action of the masses. In 1928, he was
imprisoned for the first time because
of statements he made to the press.
In that year and the next, peasant
risings broke out under the leadership
\of Charlemagne Peralte. They were
supported by Roumain through that
other art of his, the strike. One of his
great feats in the action sphere, and
this is widely recognized, -is having
rounded out the preferred form of
struggle of the Haitian workers, the
general strike. That is, he transformed
student strikes into general strikes.
Roumain also led the vanguard of the
anti-imperialist resistance. That earned
him great popularity.
TO no avail, given the nationalist
character of many. of his texts, the
oligarchy persisted in its efforts to win
over Roumain totheir own designs.
On the one hand, the official mouth-
pieces protested against the occupa-
tion and on the other, it grew evident
that they accepted economic inter-
ference with the aim of consolidating
their own interests. This attitude
radicalized Roumain; his view of .the
Haitian political scene became more
profound and his concept of the
national liberation process was purified
.and reaffirmed, nourished by the
imminence of a solution that would
make social justice viable.
ROUMAIN'S response to this
political situation (the United States
occupation and the compromising of
the local oligarchy) was the foundation
in 1934 of the Communist Party of
AT the same time that he con-
tinued with his social science work, he
began a very important book, THE
'SCHEMATIC ANALYSIS, (1932-34),
written in collaboration with Christian
Beaulieu. This work, one of the least-
known of Roumain, is 'the first to
analyze Haitian society and history
from a Marxist standpoint.
DURING this period, he was in
and put of jail. Finally he was tried by
a military court that. sentenced him
to three years in FDrt Dimanche,
where another writer, Jacques Stephen
Alexis, author of the novel COMPADRE
GENERAL SUN, was also imprisoned.
Roumain left for exile, in the course
of which he published two basic works
in the research.field. CONTRIBUTION
TO THE STUDY OF PRE-COLUMB-
IAN ETHNOBOTANY IN THE
GREATER ANTILLES (1942) and'
THE SACRIFICE OF THE DRUM OF
ASSOTO (1953), the latter on Voodoo
POETRY AS A WEAPON
THE' poems of Jacques Rou-
miain were not collected in book form
until after his death in 1945, when his
wife, 'Nicole, published them. -One of
his longest poems andy ariong the
Most important in the collection is
EBONY WOOD," which gives the
book its title. The great'agitator
wrote poetry sporadically, as a reflexive,
-rest after performing a hard job. Some
of these poems present the incon-
-formity and anguish of a man whose
existence was thoroughly dedicated
to the cause of his country's liberation.
EBONY WOOD reflects the con-
ceptual essence of all of Roumain's
work and complements 'it. Intense"
and angry, the small volume is a
synthesis of what was the central axis
of the life'and work of this immortal
Haitian. Colonialism and capitalism
distorted the essences of the peoples
of America. What might be regarded
as an Antillean-civilization was tor-
pedoed by both systems.
IN the Caribbean, they imposed
European cultures, which nonetheless
shaped, upon the Indian subsoil, and
along with the multiple and diverse
African heritage, an authentic series
of identifiable characteristics. It is no
se,:et that the African component
was shunted aside by the very nature
of relations of production--based on
slavery. Roumain was extremely con-
scious of this typically colonial situa-
-tion. We have already pointed out how
he fought' from the pages of LA
REVUE INDIGENE against the
Europe-worshipping alienation and
imitativeness of the neo-colonial oli-
garchy that acted as the bearer of
assirnilati6nism. Several of his poems
*' Contiiued on Page 8
BEAT ALL OTHERS FOR QUALITY VALUE AND LIFE
S DIEGO MARTIN
PORT OF SPAIN
112, henry st.
42, eastern mn. rd.
- ;--- --
SUNDAY JANUARY 9,1976 TAPIA PAGE 5
PAGE 6 TAPIA SUNDAY JANUARY 9, 1976
IN the nights of the Season the calypsonians
begin to collect outside the tents, with its
barrera announcing whichever Brigade they're
in, like young hopefuls or.punch-drunk prize-
fighters on the seamy fringes of a gym, or like
bullfighters with two chances. The old days of
the mano a mano combats between top
singers like Melody versus Sparrow, with
invective as sword and cape, are over, no
picador no picong anymore, and once that
passed so did the reason for'the Master of
Ceremonies' affectionate insulting of the
audience in the gym or arena or tent.
Also, of course, the participation of the
audience in the Sans Humanite responses as
the loser bit the sawdust with the crowning
insult. Nowadays, the M.C., Stalin or Com-
poser coddles the audiences at different tents
when those who remember how. it was are
dying to be insulted. People used to sit far
back for that reason alone, and in fact, those
who sat in the front rows looked like show-
offs hoping to be awarded the ears of the
great picong bullshit. It was the greatest kind
of celebrity column. First the MC's Uncle
Tommish kotowing to the presence of some
bigshot, a parody of slavery, then the pafise
and the pitiless insult that immediately dem-
Well I'm sure you have heard-of that great calypsonian
Who went by the Soubriquet
Of Attila the hun, I don't mean the Mongolian
But the one from right'here.
Well is-years ago since Attila died
To be joined by Spoiler and Small Island Pride
But the songs they have left us are here to stay,
Though they crossed the Jordan to the other side
'Crossed the Jordan to the other side
Now it is written in Isiah, 'All things have a season
There's no abiding stay'
That the greatest of us, without rhyme, without reason
could take off today.
Well, I've just heard a rumour that this friend of mine
A mighty calypsonian who was in his prime
Who was sent up the river for a holiday
Has just crossed the river for good this time.
Crossed the river for good this time.
Jn Trinidad, long ago, anybody with emotion
j Right here in this crowd,
Will recall the signs, proclaiming: calypsonians
and dogs not allowed
Well Henderson Josephs, in calypso,
sang: 'If man's best friend is his dg, not so?
Then who call us dogs must be less than men,
The sons of bitches never had a friend'.
Sons of bitches never had a friend.-
Any friend that you lose makes a great desolation
But a man of this kind,
Was the pride and joy f this little nation
In music and rhyme
For a calypsonian Is a king indeed,
And if man Is a dog, then he top the breed,
And the king of all kings in oldtime Calso,
Was Henderson Josephs, the Mighty Cobol
.La. L La.- La...
ocratised the Tent and had the blackest VIP
blushing at the howls of de-ision.
THE-spontaneity of picong went quickly as the
Tents become more showbiz-oriented, as ticket prices
rose and the shows became flashier theatre, with
ushers, reserved seats, and a hierarchy of front, middle
and back rows. The rhymed insult-exchange. the
flying died and for us who remember, a lot went with
it, including the skill of the calypsonian at improvisa-
tion. Improvisation degenerated to the roadside
welcome to visitors and the gentle satire or out-
rageous flattery in circulating "night-club tables and
the using of cliche refrains.
No point claiming that everything progresses,
including calypso. Calypso can't really progress any
more than poetry can, and no flashiness is going to
make it look like progress.
The only one left with the old abrasive brass is
Stalin, who is still too gentle. Composer has lost the
acid sarcasm of his apprenticeship, but so much
sweetness and lights and razzmatazz have come in
with the likes of Duke, Shorty and the other sexpots
that flashy costumes are the rule now. The old die-
hards who come in, Pretender style, Terror style, and
:Kitch-in-the-tent but not in the Savannah style, the.
ones with the stingy-brinm hats, the tie and the dated
suits look like artificial anachronisms.,
Those are' the true-true characters who interest
me, whose theatricality is their way of life, and not
.the androgynous anonymity of those who try to
'make a mini Las Vegas lounge of the tents, studs and
tight crotches and razmatazz. Thank the ghost of.
Spoiler that the audience remains the judge, and that
no amount of brass, wining and back-up girls in hot
pants can seduce them. Viva the second contenders!
Viva and oles to the middleweights: Stalin, Blakie,
Brigo, Composer, Terror, and, when he is where he
belongs, blinking, stabbing the air, hat on, working
tight with the mike, El Rey himself, Belmondo!
Calypso As Theatre-
Ten To One Is Murder
The superb example of calypso as drama is
Sparrow's "Ten To One is Murder", in which the
singer, in self-defence, addresses a court whose jury
is his public. The case is blurred in memory, but the
calypso itself contains the defendant's version line
by line as it mounts to an apologetically violent
climax. The-chorus of "Ten to One Is Murder" is
cynically funny because it is not the defendant who
leads the chant, but a solenmly agreeing court, the
premise being morally unarguable. Ten men against
one is not fair, whether the man is wrong or right. If
we find the chorus irresistible, then the judgement is
decided immediately. The dramatic mastery has this
built-in irony, that, as far as one remembers, what
Sparrow describes is not supposed to have been
completely true. Thus, every fast thrust of explana-
tion, propelled by the public chorus, accelerates in
exaggeration, and the exaggeration approaches legend-
ary proportions. These lines are quoted from memory:
"I remember I had a chicken atMiramar"
(Ten to One is Murder)
Well, I say to meself, this was me Last Supper",
there we are of course, the defendant as Christ to be
"and is then I remember
in me next pants pocket I forget me wedger"
(I think the charge or rumour was that Sparrow shot
off a gun), but which court is going to prefer the fact
"Well, they go cut me down as smarllas Pretender"
Masterful, masterful! Pretender is of course, the short- '
statured calypsonian. Pretender is a classicist of old-
time kaiso. -Sparrow's reputation, and its inevitable-
arrogance, was at its peak. So the ten bad-johns
coming after him are not. only after his physical
person but his reputation; they want,he implies,to :
reduce him to the status, of Pretender, to-be nbt
quite a king, to remind him of his origins and teach
him a\lesson in humility. Line after line is-liket that'
without a single discordant syllable, structurally-.l
impeccable, and working on so many dramatic levels,''.
that, if it were staged not only the actors-but-the
entire audience as well as the orchestra-and I suppose
elements of the set would be involved.
Before we argue that there are several other .
calypsos like that, we should remember that the,
dramatised calypso, and the calypso is dramatic
because it is narrative related by a singer, also has a
strong lyric element. In fact tlht is>its first necessity:
the tune: whereas in the case of "Ten To One Is-
Murder", the first necessity is the Aristotelian imita-
tion of an action. And the action, in this instance, is
not fictive, but actual. It answers the first question
of theatre. What happened? "The response is the plot.
A famous public figure enters a courtroom.
He is charged with assault and, again, working from
memory, the possession of firearms which he dis-
charged. The famous public figure listens to the
prosaic, traditional charges, the laborious inquisition,
the evidence piling up, and he is asked to speak in his
defence. "'Mr. Fransisco, could you tell the court, in
your own words, what happened?" The famous public
figure'is disarmed. No guitar, no mike, no music, no
We cannot imagine the prosecution singing its
charge. That would lack dignity and would be frivol-
ous.. Not unless that prosecution were dcne in an
operatic style, but the mock-operatic style would
contain elements of self-parody and reduce the-
seriousness of the charge. The famous figure could -
go to jail. He has enemies like all famous men, who
feel it is time to cut him down. What weapons has he
left? Without defamation, it is to lie like hell, or
make things look so overwhelmingly against him. the
martyr, the Christ-figure, the slain tribal-king, the
betrayed leader. How can he do it? By physical elo- .
Notes On The Calyp
Whose Revised Versk
Opens At The
-. -- --- - .-- -r- -
._- .= ._-*_ :,; ...- : -. .* .F- ..?
quence. In other words, he must stage himself, and
by the time he is finished, have the court itself
chanting his defense. All the charges are obscene
"They say I push a galfrom Grenada "
(Ten To One is Murder)
Okay, even if I push the gal from Grenada and I ent
saying, is they say, is only one person I push, so why
ten men must attack me? The work is so assured that
it can .swiftly give a side wink to Cole Porter and
Frank Sinatra, the latter another vilified, violence-
"In the still of the night,
I was really in a fright,
' Me alone against ten,
Ten vicious men"
All the endings are feminine, and therefore plaintive
and pleading. But the exterior is macho. '
But as theatre it is even better since every line
sets its own- gesture, and staging. The defendant will
require the entire space of tire courtroom to, almost
hysterically, re-enact his bravery and his panic. The
jnagistrate's mallet is a gun or razor.
"I hear potow-pow and the crowd start to
The jury ducks, as he imitates the violence of stone-
throwing, he runs, he cowers, he prays. All this in
totally honest folk-rythmn, but most admirably of
all, with the. tart twist of, 'I may be exaggerating a
little', but 'look at what the very mastery which they
are attacking is capable of, and that is of illuminating
a banal newspaper incident, a rum-shop rumour, to
Sthe incandesence of art.' The participants are given a
more heroic stature than just being bad-johns. As for
the singer-defendant himself, exaggeration or not,
the truth no longer matters, the dramatic power, the
exquisitely precise rapidity of phrasing, (only Spar-
row can sing that song) and the gaiety that domi-
nates its dread have made it one of the true master-
pieces of our poetry. Yes, and something
that should be used for an audition for any West
One is not leaping onto an academic
bandwagon in claiming all of that for a-calypso. I
retain my irritation at.the awful structural banality
of most calypsos, the boring musical structure the
o As Musical
n Of The Charlatan
jaded rhymes, the worn-to-a-frazzle sexual metaphors,
and the danger of teaching the calypso as poetry.
That does not mean that my admiration for certain
calypsos as verse-writing is not still alive. In the best
examples it approaches astonishment and delight.
But like any other art the immortal examples are
works of genius, and we make too many concessions
when we ascribe genius to the kind of calypso that
sounds indestructible in its year, but which fades.
and in fact, can sound embarrassing some seasons
later. For all its flourishes of self-dramatisation how-
ever, the principle generating "Ten To One Is
Murder", is humouS. The situation is desperate but
Funny, or perhaps funny in reminisence, despite its
You Doing A Play
Carnival Time, Boy?
'You doing a play Carnival Time, boy? You mad?'
The calypso itself is dramatic, and for a couple of
years in the Tents there were very brief-dramatised
documentary style calypso dramas, one about Mano
Benjamin that was in execrable taste, and another, if
I remember right, about some kind of wedding.
Cy'pher I think, was in one of them. They were the
,germ of what someone else has called 'Calypsopera',
but they didn't always work because of their-brevity,
and the plot lines were mere jokes. But there is
something in there for Trinidadian playwrights,,and
one should be bold-faced enough to try and create
the same audience hostility and participation as in
the Tents. "The. Charlatan" is no way near that, but
any calypso-comedy should have the gall forthe same
kind of bacchanal comedy of any ethnic farce. As
playwrights we can't duck those challenges, and
failure can only teach.
As far as choreography is concerned, I
am more interested in the kind of spontaneous jump-
up that is detonated by catchy choruses and irrepres-
sible movement when a bunch of West Indians are in
a room, where two or three people can male a fete.
Since the play is a domestic farce, its main action
confined to a Belmont attic with a fair amount of
physical clutter, presumably there is no room for
dancing, not if one thinks of conventional choreo-
graphic space. But how much space does the West
Indian, responding to his music really need? In
fact, the less space, the better; the fact that the jump-
up is an effort to clear from the crowd occasionally,
like a surfacing porpoise before the dancer dives
back in his element, whether it is in a crammed
room or on the streets so jammed with people that
the only way to go is up. Also people dancing to
calypso listen as well as dance, and even with the
calypsonian who wants every punch line to be heard,
too much wit is out. He needs to be in close contact
with the orchestra, his style is direct narrative pre-
sentation and with calypsonian and choru:., n.
intensity of both listening and dancing which yet
appears to be relaxed is the calypso style. But all
theatrical dancing must be disciplined, even the most
spontaneous and domesticated. The thing is that th'e
style is tribal and doesn't look favourably on too
much individuality. A communal rythmn, is not
only traditional but necessary, since anyone break-
ing-away from the crowd is using up space and can
break the beat. A chipping Jour Ouvert crowd is as
disciplined as an army keeping step.
No theatre should dare to duplicate the mass
impact of Carnival, and no film can ever be wide.
and simultaneous enough to capture it, because both
forms can only show progressive, instants and there
are no climaxes. A film would have to pound us'into
that insensate surrender which two days of unrelent-
inig music, often of the same tune reduces us to, so
that perhaps a carnival play should avoid the mass
impact of Carnival before anything else. If it tries
otherwise it will be pathetic.
Even if that is the final judgement of the
audience: 'pathetic', the playwright must have the
guts that it takes for any contender to face the crowd
in the Tent.
"We in the same trade, anyway,
music and rhyme
so is to get up dey
and stand the grind."
To win a crown is-nothing, I agree,
But when you lose it, you lose majesty.
And once a man has been a King, is hard
To put a common hat back on your head.
You feel like Caesar with his Laurel Wreath
You feel each breath to be a golden breath '
But all the power that you feel ent wrong
For what made you a King? A common song.
Your Kingdom is your music, words and song,
But best win nothing than to lose a crown.
It was great
To be a King
It was great
To be a King
The sceptre, c.'own and ting
great, it was great
But that is the trouble with Trinidad
What good today by tomorrow bad,
What they dig tonight they go bury tomorrow
Look last year what they do to the Shadow
Look how Lord Brigo struggling for years
And Stalin and Blakie, is a thing for tears
What theV like now is personality
The flash in the pan and 'he nonenity
I have seen it all it will pass away
The true-true beauty of the old lavouay.
ao when you meet sonto man out on the stree-
His collar shrivel, old shoes on his feet
.ust tip your hat in passing, he might sing
'I ent no beggar, boy, I was a King.
I was a King for one night on that stage
And I'm proud to pass on that heritage
.Fromr Kino to King in passing goes a crown
But who is trulv humble can't fall do'.,n
You SFr m,, sc--r vinq h"'ct'.in ic\ :'.?iav
lBu h re is r.e thin! :h'v cin tt ta'.', wav
SUNDAY JANUARY 9, 1976 TAPIA PAGE 7
: .? -
_* : -
.< & :-* fl. -
PAGE 8 TAPIA SUNDAY JANUARY 9, 1977
To The Liberation
6 From Page 5
tell this truth.
On the slow journey to Guinea,
Death travels with you, guiding
Here you find anew the mighty
your trees, the jungle,
and the furious wind that ruffes
its nocturnal and eternal tresses.
On the slow journey to Guinea
Your grandparents await you
calm-footed upon aged dust,
to speak unhurriedly of worn-
Your grandparents awaityou.
Fearful streams see death,
they hear your homebound
steps, and in their beds
their liquid skeleton trembles.
This is the slow journey to Guinea.
No palm trees or drums
will welcome you, in this black
country of blackfaces,
under a sky of smoke
stung by birdsong;
a sky eternally suspended
over the monster-eye of the pond
fringed by lashes of trees.
Only there beside the water,
in the quiet village,
the house of your parents
where the family stone awaits
to give repose at last to your
THAT recognition of Africa as the
original source does not involve any
feeling or desire for metaphysical
Africa-I have kept your memory
you are within me
Like the splinter in the wound
Like a tutelary fetish in the
center of the village.
Use me as the shot for your sling
my mouth as the lips of your sore
my knees as the broken columns
of your fall...
I Want to belong only to your race
workers, peasants of all coun-
IN recognizing his African fore-
bears, he honors his condition as a
human being. Thus, Roumain could'
never be regarded as a "poet of negri-.
tude." On the contrary, after being
first immersed in the quest for the
national identity of his country, he
found in the revolutionary practice of
Marxism the road to independence
and legitimacy. Without peasants and
without workers, it is impossible to
attain the freedom of the nation. The
poem EBONY WOOD expresses this
beautifully, rising, to a more human,
CONCRETELY, Jacques Rou-
main conceived of poetry as a weapon
in revolutionary struggle. In a theoreti-
cal piece called POETRY AS A
WEAPON, published in the first issue
of the Cuban magazine GACETA DEL
CARIBE in 1944, he sets forth the
different positions of poets in regard to
their creative craft, summing them*
up in the views of two key figures of
totally opposing nature in this regard.
He analyzes- the French poet Stephen
Mallarme and the Soviet Vladimir
HE points to Mallarme as the
height of reaction and the author of
THE CLOUD: WEARING PANTS as
the protopype of the revolution. One
embodies decadent escapism, the other
innovational commitment. After out-
lining their respective attitudes to
language, conceived in one case as a
magical incantation and in the other
as a means of communication, Rou-
"The myth of the freedom of
the poet must be brought to an end.
Far from being a 'very ancient figure',
as Valery claims,the poet is above all
a contemporary, the consciousness
that reflects the epoch. Poets are not
free unless their thinking reflects
action. They are not free unless they
are bound to the need to choose, to
choose between Garcia Lorca and
Franco, between Thaelman and
Hitler, between peace and war,
between socialist democracy and
THEIR mythical freedom ends
in what might be called the Pontius
Pilate complex, which covers all the
artifices of cowardice and betrayal.
Poets are both witnesses and actors of
the drama of history. They are enrol-
led with full responsibility in that
drama. Especially in our times must
the art of the poets be a frontline
weapon at the service of the people."
Unquestionably in his brief, cutting,
concise verse in keeping with an esthetic
that encourages national values, there
is to be found an effective, committed
: RULERS OF THE DEW
THE posthumous novel GOBER-
NARDORES DELROCIO (RULERS
OF THE DEW) is the great master-
piece by Jacques Roumain. It is also
the most popular. It is.no accident
that the novel occupies a place in the
universal literature of our times.
Jacques Stephen Alexis, another out-
standing Haitian writer, said that in
the most remote parts of the planet,
people approached him to speak of
the love between Manuel andAnaisa,
including some Hungarian friends who
confessed that they had helped to
popularise the book among country's(
peasants in an effort to help. themi--
fight a serious drought that was des-
troying the crops.
THE novel was completed in
Mexico while Roumain was serving
on a diplomatic mission. Before he
returned to Haiti for the last time, he
stopped off in Havana where he left
the manuscript with Guillen, as well as
translations of some of the latter's
poetry into Creole. A few days before
his death the Gaceta del Caribe
announced the probable translation of
RULERS OF THE DEW into Spanish
by Alejo Carpentier. Unfortunately
this did not come about. Howeyei, in
1961, it was published in Cuba bythe
National Publishing House. The novel's
splendid fiction"proves to be a poetical
transposition of reality in fiction of a
ROUMAIN has been described
as a realistic writer. The fact is that
although his first stories,and novelettes
can be included within certain realism,
it is useful to point out that his second
novel, THE BEWITCHED MOUN-
TAIN, published in 1931, is a clearcut
antecedent of RULERS, OF THE
DEW has no connection-with the
stylistic procedures used by the fore-
bears of the Haitian novel, Marcelin,
Hibert, Lherisson, whose work is part
of the current of critical realism.
FULL of hope, militancy and
love, it thrusts us into a world that
carl be only by the organ-
ized, aware strength of those who
collectively work the land. That does
not mean that Roumain is devoid of a
rigorous critical sense in regard to the
customs, and especially the deeply-
rooted mysticism of the Haitian
country people. Thus Roumain uses
his dreams and ideals in his concep-
tion of community life in the little
town of Fonds Rouge. But it would
be risky to try to find autobiographical
elements in the work, though his exile
in Cuba was undeniably important.
His activities here alongside the best
of the workers movement and the
correct assimilation of practice instill
evident veracity into Manuel's pbses-
sion with the strikes organized on the
largest of the Antilles.
ALTHOUGH the author is pro-
jected in Manuel as hero, he certainly
did 'not, experience directly the
wretchedness of peasant life. Not
in vain did Nicolas Guillen so wisely
throw light upon the character of his
"AS people have said, he was:
born in a plushcradle. Everything
conspired to make him one of those
light brown people whb comprise the
Haitian aristocracy (Blacks there are
looked down upon) and who find
sleazy national politicking or business
deals under the wing of US imperial-
ism the means for obtaining success.
Grandson of a former president, an
educated young man with nice man-
ners and appearance, the little world
of hlis country and of his class was at
BUT Roumain gave up that
world. He took the side of the Haitian
people, the exploited Blacks, breaking
with, the light-skinned bourgeoisie to
line up beside the peasants who toil
from sunup to sundown in the
CUMBITES (work parties)."
WEDNESDAY DEC. 22.
Ellis Clarke unopposed in
IPresidential nomination. Sena-
tor Louise Horne-calls for ban
on overtime to.create jobs for
unemployed. Caroni refuses to
budge on 10% bonus demand.
OWTU fail to get bonus from
THURSDAY DEC. 23.
Speaker rules Opposition
No-Confidence Motion out of
order. Police win appeal in
'Thornhill case. Abolish tax on
agriculture says Senator George
Bovell. George Weekes backs.
call to abolish overtime work.
Tobago self-government Motion
omitted from Order Paper
without Speaker's knowledge.
.Panday says pay 10% bonus to
sugar workers from sugar levy.
Bomb found in GPO.
FRIDAY DEC. 24.
Trinidadians on spending
spree for Xmas; stores record
heavy sales. ,Senate passes
record Budget at 3 a.m. Clinton
Bernard to act as Judge. Mans-
well says Cabinet main hind-
rance to efficiency in Public
Service. OPEC lends $42m. to
Third World countries. National
Service plan for Dominica.
SATURDAY DEC. 25.
Ellis Clarke Christmas-mes-
sage: Civil War rages in our
midst. Nigeria nationalises
Esso. Japan to buy more bauxite
WEDNESDAY DEC. 29.
Clarke to be confirmed as
President today. Opposition
Reps. plan boycott today;
Senators expected to attend.
Three murders, 6 road deaths
mar holidays. Trintoc earnings,
up by $5.9m but daily crude
output drops by 22,058 b's.
THURSDAY DEC. 30.
Clarke elected President at
4-minute sitting; Opposition
stays away. Neal & Massy sees
itself earning "illusory" profits
on account of inflation. Trintoc
not concerned about oil con-
servation. PS outlines policy
for wider use of community
centres. "Tobago" runs halted
by port Body. Chalkdust to
sing "To Lloyd with Love."
Calypsonians object to Sparrow
alone in Lagos. TICFA blasts
bonus call by rival Sugar Union;
call for handing out of land to
farmers. Extra month for mer-
chants to clear docks. Dayclean
decision to be given today.
Nobody can open door to
Mercedes Benz society says
FRIDAY DEC. 31.
Oov't lifts import ban on
cement. DAC plans self-rule
education year. TICFA says
-bring back cess. Shah hits back
at rival union. 1976 a remark-
able year for Court decisions
says Express analyst. Retail
prices skyrocket at Central
Market. Caroni aims to pro-
duce 208,250 tons sugar. Post-
men drop lockout charge
against. CPO. Guyana slashes
Budget from $795m in 1976
to $546m; background of
serious economic and political
challenge. Dayclean decision
put off again.
SUNDAY JANUARY 2.
S Barclays' to go 51% local
this year. Knox new Neal &
Massy Chairman. Guardian re-
ports Tapia split between Denis
Solomon and Loyd Best fac-
tions. Guyana to get assistance
from OPEC Special Fund.
MONDAY JANUARY 4.
Under 18's banned from
pool rooms. Sugar Union will
not strike in fiirl week of'
crop. 5000 enter secondary
schools. TTTU says. ban on
teachers in poll ics nw obsolete.
Bishop Abd'dl;lah-: '19'P6 oiiur .
Watergate year; "people con-
tinued to make the wrong
choices." Sugar/- Boilers to
meet on Bonus Issue. Death
Toll on Road fifth in world..
Saudis to hike oil production.
NCB Executive: Supply -of
money outstrips demand. Econ-
omic expansion slowing down:
Central Bank Review.
WEDNESDAY JAN 5.
Panday to meet Speaker
Jan 5 on No-Confidence
Motion. Public Accounts Com-
mittee due to meet next week
(beginning Jan. 10) under
Panday's Chairmanship. ULF
Central Executive to meet
Thursday January 6 to plan
public meeting campaign.
Panday accuses media of stifling
ULF voice in Parliament. ULF
Parliamentarians to meet
workers and farmers at OWTU
on Sunday Jan. 9. to discuss
whether party should continue
to attend Parliament. Crop :
-iarts Jan. .4. at Reform ajld...;I
Woodford Lodge.: 'cut
ieaing uiges Shahl. Conp
. Conti d
TODAY we are oi the road
to 'diversification in prin-
ciple, with the establish-
ment of Senior Secondary
which are supposed to be
equipped with a technical
wing and a curriculum
which offers vocational
But there are myriad
problems. Most of the
technical wings have not
been built-and have not
In addition, we have an
extreme shortage of teachers
in the technical and vocational
subjects because no preparation
for these was made in the
areas of teacher training and
So what in fact we have
now are massive school plants,
teachers and therefore no
What this means is that we
might very well end up being
saddled with grammar schools
all over again. And escape
from the 'o' level 'A' level
syndrome will have eluded us
for yet another time.
This is where widespread
apprenticeship should come
in, overseered by Local Govern-
ment and co-ordinated in rela-
tion to individual schools by
the school boards as well as
post secondary on-the-job
How can the Prime Minister
speak so glibly about the short-
age of skills in the construction
industry and not see the need
to train large numbers of
Apprentices on the job as car-
penters, .bricklayers, masons
and so on at a time when the
construction industry is expand-
Welders and mechanics
could be apprenticed in small
garages, financed by the State.
The local government can
ensure that standards are main-
A system of National Certi-
fication must be devised that
will incorporate 'o' level passes
alongside technical skills
acquired during apprenticeship.
From Page 8
Tapia meets in Cascade to
discuss formation of new party
with Frank Solomon in the
saddle. Trial of postmen leaders
postponed to Jan. 21. Riot
Squad called out to scatter
dock-workers outside Min. of
Public Utilities. 600 Pool
Tables left on docks following
new taxes, etc. Williams unable
meet Manley call for late January
Summit. .Grenada police on
Best denies Tapia split
into two factions; says conflict
3 years old and over permanent
professional party or armchair -
politics. STATT finds PSA
80% wage demand unrealistic.
WEDNESDAY JAN 6.
Warrant out for bed money
doctor. Panday mum on talks
with Speaker. Snags to be
removed on MV Tobago. Sugar
Union holds talks on Caroni
/ diversification. Pitt to lead
i.gecia Festival Team. Jamaica
tightens foreign exchange.
SUNDAY JANUARY 9, 1976 TAPIA PAGE 9
Will these Seni
go the way of
That is the only way we and integrate schooling and
will be able to break the 'o training, theory and practice.
level stranglehold on the sys- Such a programme would
tem, diversify the curriculum force a reorientation of the
It is in the cathedrals of the age
decorated by the age's artists
that the soul must be laid bare
It is to the loan's manager that
you must confess your siAs now
and beg forgiveness
Pay your tithes
make a fixed deposit of your soul
Christ, trying to break even, what a vocation
Take waning from the figures, no saints they,
sculpted by hunger and other things
stuck in their niches near the doorway of your bank.
They are lepers seeking miracles at a church font.
entire system and would also
create some of the conditions
necessary- for a more equal
The apprenticeship scheme
proposed in the 197.7 Budget
far from influencing the pre-
sent education system in a
positive way, will only help to
create another elite group of
The government is establish-
ing the 'o' level certificate as a
minimum qualification for
Finally, the 1977 Budget
also speaks of improving the
Employment Exchange System
to ensure placement of 'o' level
graduates after their programme
What the government fails
to see is that one of the crucial
departures must be to prepare
people for self-employment and
Apprenticeship is vital to
such a task.
L- I I iI
TAPIA SOLD HERE
SHenry St. & Ind. Sq. under Salvatori's
Frederick St. & Ind. Sq. under Nova Scotia
Frederick St. & Ind. Sq. under Salvatori's
Chacon St. & Ind. Sq. under Hoadley's
Alchemist Drug Store Duke Street -
St. Vincent St. & Ind. Sq. under Gordon Grant
St. Vincent St. Opposite Trinidad House
St. Vincent St. Under Trinidad House
Frederick Street & Queen under Ross Drugs
Frederick Street & Queen under Y. De lima's-
South West Cor.-Duke & Frederick Streets
Frederick Street & Park tinder Min. of Petroleum
Chock Hong Parlour Duke St. West of St. Vincent
Sealy's Bookshop- 111, Frederick St. North.
Lq 11 KIRPALANI'S
Frederick St. POS. 112 High St. San F'do Arima,
and HARDWARE & ELECTRIC: Kirpalani's Roundabout
I SUNDAY JANUARY 9, 1977 PAGE 10 TAPIA-
I Am Prepared For Any Consequences
ON Friday last, Decem-
ber 31, Ken Loutoo of
the Sunday Guardian
phoned the Tapia Office
to say that there were
reports of a split in Tapia
between a Best faction and
a Denis Solomon faction.
Michael Anthony Harris
took the call in my absence.
Would I phone back to
When I phoned back
the call went straight
through to the Production
Department down below.
"Call 38876 on a day like
I called frankly hoping
to get anybody I knew to
find out who gave the
story. But it was Old Year's
Day and Trinidad. Endless
Lloyd Taylor asked me
what I would have said.
To which I returned that
I really did not want to
interfere but candidly, it
was the best news I had
heard in many, many years.
RANK AND FILE
Nothing is more un-
healthy than the idea that
political parties should not
'iave conflict. That idea
too is part of the old colo-
nial .politics. In a demo-
cratic party, conflict is the
salt of growth and open
conflict is absolutely neces-
sary so that the rank and
the public can judge the
Equally, it is inevitable
that valid political parties
would split where for some
reason they have assembled
I have no doubt that
Tapia needs to split. I
have known it for at least
three years; I have repeated
it over and over so that
people could be warnedand
so that the wrong people
would not fall on the right
side or the right people
on the wrong side.
At bottom, Tapia must
split not because it con-
tains two diametrically
opposed political cultures,
one of magic and one of'
work. That conflict cannot
be avoided. We have to
split because we include
godfathers and manipula-
tors and opportunists who
live by exploiting the in-
evitable clash of cultures.
I am satisfied about that;
I have repeated it openly
a thousand times over the
Says Lloyd Best
last three years.
Now that the elections
are over, all our weaknesses
are there to be exploited
by the opportunists who
mB e. mT
e o a a am'-
From Page 3
Then, he robbed .his chin.
Then holding up his palmns and
shrugging, he exclaimed.
"That st ridiculous! I. don't
understand it. We've paid you
"I wasted it."
"I don't understand".
"I. invested all my money
in a business which has
"That's crazy . Well, rn
see if we can arrange a benefit
match for you. I shall propose
it to.the Board at the next meet-
ing ... Yes, Rovira, you deserve
it, you do...
"Yes but what about now?"
"I don't know. Youll work
something out. That's not my
concern . meanwhile at the
next meeting I shall propose
this benefit thing to the Board.
It's the best I can do..."
"Well, Rovira, I'm sorry ...
drop it at the office. So long ...
He lit another cigarette and
left. Shortly afterwards, I heard
the roar of a car engine
leaving. I sat down in my
corner and sat there motionless
for a few minutes.
Finally, I put,my jacket on,_
turned the lights out. Outside.
it was dark. Beneath the stands,
there was a lot of moisture.
Dark streams of water
flowed along the streets.
Through one of the gates I saw
the lonely tiers of seats, neatly
lined up against the blue sky.
I took out my Watch which
was in one ol my pockets. I'd
got it as a present in Lausannce
when I.d been there for an
international. Its gold-casing
sparkled in the light.
only yesterday were attack-
ig the ULF from our
platform and today are
saying that we lost because
we failed to join them.
Tapia lost the election
because we were unequal td
the task of turning our
people in a new direction
and there are many com-
plex reasons for that inclu-
ding errors made by Lloyd
Now that we have to,
continue the hard road
ahead, many people are
tempted to fall by the way,
especially those ambitious
ones who were activated
late and who set their gaze.
too tirmly on election
The public must look
carefully at the people who
are causing confusion
They will invariably see
people with milk and water
commitment to serious
The glib manipulators
have never done any hard
work in Tapia; they thrive
on the exploitation of all
,our weaknesses. They cover
up their indolence and
their commitment to the
-politics of whipping up an
easy crowd by creating con-;
fusion in the ranks of the!
We spent three years of,
Tapia's working time try-
ing to .resolve these in-,
compatibilities by demo-'
cratic and constitutional
means. I am satisfied that
that way lies no solution.
We are now in a state of'
open strife civil.
When I walked out of
the Assembly on December
5, I made my position
'very plain and I am fully
prepared for all the con-
I was going to put it on my
wrist when it suddenly slipped
from my grasp and Pll to the
floor. Bending dowi,. I picked
it up and held it to nmy ar. It
had stopped. I shook it. It still
did not lick.
There before me was the.
watchman., staring at me. He
had come to lock up.
"Something wrong. Mr.
"No, It's.nothi fih,;
**^' ;'. /'::^
LOOKING back at the collective experience what
we can see is a number of cycles of growth in a deve-
lopment of Tapia, each new cycle being marKed by
critical points of pain and stress and internal crisis
in relation to the issues in the country. Corres-
pondingly, the fruits of survival and development
appear from time to time in periods of calm, inseAiible
unnoticed progress and expansion, of the movement.
On my reckoning, there have been seven crucial
moments in the evolution of the Tapia Movement.
Each requires a full articulation and comprehensive
contemplation if Tapia people are to win for them-
selves and our movement the inner peace required
to set the flame of dedication alight
From THE LAST HOPE Lloyd Best June 1, 1975
THIS of course is what we have already been doing
for many many years ever since the days of the New
World Movement . deepening and widening our
resources, expanding the circle of our influence and
creating a social and -poltical movement with its own
vision, its own plans and its own programmes; its
leadership, its organization and all me means it finds
necessary for translating the breakaway by the iso-
lated individual into a moralresurgence and a cultural
revival oT historic proportions tor the people of our
nation. The ingredients of this process are personal
integrity, moral insight and political judgment, all of
them drawing necessarily on a combination of faith
and hope, of trust and love. THE LAST HOPE
THE cynicism which confuses agitation and mobil-
isation with education and organization has no place
inwnarsoever the Tapia scneme or things. In no way
must crowds be a substitute for cadres, though
necessary they both indubitably are, provided that
they are coupled in the right sequences and combined
in the correct proportions. On that unpopular ground,
we must continue to take our stand in Tapia and
to frame our proposals for action proposals which,
at this particular conjuncture, since 1973 September,
must focus on our drive to office and to power and
therefore on a programme of agitation; mobilisation
THE LAST HOPE
* I- -4~ati' ~ '
. From Page 2
hold together while maintaining the
perspectives for Caribbean transforma-
tion as advocated by NJM, can certainly
become a source of hope for the rest
of the region.
In Jamaica quite frankly one
discerns no-such hope. The re-election
of Michael Manley's PNP in what has
been described as a landslide victory,
can only be seen as a source of hope
for the Caribbean if one is first willing
to swallow the idea that Manley's
"democratic socialism based on love"
is anything more than manipulation.
It may make far greater sense to
investigate the impact of the new
li the first place, the victory
was a landslide victory only.if we
look at the number of seats won. But
the actual percentage of votes reveal
that there was a national swing of
only 0.64% to the PNP and that the
JLP only slipped back some 0.2% on
the popular vote:
This has been touted as a demon-
stration of how solidly the two-party
system has been established in Jamaica.
It may very well be that. And it
would do us well to remember that a
two-party system is strong when both
parties have broadly similar ideological
The fact is that Manley for all his
"socialist" rhetoric has done relatively
little to liberate the Jamaican economy
from the stranglehold of foreign and
domestic corporations and the Jamaican
people from the stranglehold of politi-
cal ignorance and impotence.
Little need be added about the
victory of the PNM in Trinidad and
Tobago. Here to the return of the
population 'to the traditional pattern
of political alignment demonstrates
SUNDAY JANUANYtF ,'lo iMretA rIsii *
the inability of any segment of the
new movement to win their confidence
and their trust.
Where the Trinidad situation
assumes importance is that we are the
one Caribbean country which has
managed to escape the crippling impact
g~ economic crisis. Indeed as a result
of the Oil Bonanza Trinidad and
Tobago is enjoying unprecedented
Trinidad's revenue increased
from $398 million in 1972 to a pro-
jected $2.313 million in 1977 thus
providing uJ not only with ,, the
opportunity but with the responsibility
for taking the lead in working for the
transformation of the entire Caribbean
The tragedy of the re-election
of Williams and the PNM is therefore a
Caribbean one. For if Williams' past
performance is any guide the opport-
unity will not be taken and the
responsibility will once again be
Yet, paradoxically, Williams,
more than any of the other Caribbean
leader, recognizes the consequences of
that. For he has on several occasions
warned the peoples of the Caribbean
of the possibilities of recolonisation
and of the hegemonic ambitions of
countries like Venezuela, Mexico and
Brazil, not to mention the United
It is now clear beyond the
shadow of a doubt", he said in 1973
on the occasion of his first resignation"A
that Caribbean integration will not be
achieved in the foreseeable future and
that the reality is continued Caribbean
disunity and perhaps even a reaffirma-
tion of colonialism."
m me context of Trinidad's'
failure thus far to use our massive
surpluses, in a positive an4 far reaching
way to transform the crumbling
economies of the region, those words
may well constitute a policy_ and a
Yet, gloomy as the economic
picture is, the basic choices of political
life in the region are still-to be made.
The forces of change through-
out the Caribbean and especially here.
in Trinidad have the opportunity for
regrouping and for reassessing the
basic choices and our own adequacy -
for the task.
Next time round we must be
better prepared. For the next time
round may well be the last for a long
time to come, and if history is any
guide it may be coming sooner than
TAPIA SOLD HERE
Pressy's paper Stall, Tunapuna Market
dOga's Parlour, E.M. Rd, East of Bazilon St.
Ali's Snackette, E.M. Rd, West of Bazilon St.
Payne's News Agency, E.M. Rd, West of Jubilee St.
Under Hi-Lo, Tunapuna.
Carl Carrington, Henry Rd, Tunapuna.
Carmen Best, El Dorado Rd, Tunapuna..
Sankar's Parlour, Corner Green & Fairley Sts.,
Yacoob Ali, North of St. Thomas St. on Tunapuna Rd.
Cox Tailoring Est, Tupapuna Road & E.M. Rd.
Universal Barbering Saloon,E.M. Rd, East of Auzonville Rd.
Paula Williams, UWt Campus
Pat Saenpson, UWI Campus.
Chooran Roberts, Richards St. Tacarigua.
Hi-W y Grocery, Cor. Knowles and South Main Rd, Curepe.
Tap.a House, St.-Vincent St. Tunapuna, Nr. Water Lane.
Under Hi-Lo, St. Augustine.
Sobers' Parlour, Jackson St. Curepe
Mini-city, Valpark Plaza.
Manbodi'siafe; Curepe Junction.
And General Insurance Agents
No. 5 (oncession Rd. Sea Lots
----- ---- --- --- --- - -~--~----~rfrru*- -r- --~
"';iu: b, il:~;bL .;.:;~.~i~ Li~.iT~L-CI~B~38Eii~;i4~;Be~
PAGE 12 TAPIA SUNDAY JANUARY 9,1977
TRINIDAD begins the
defence of our half of the
Shell Shield next Thursday
when we meet Jamaica in
an away game.
No encounter with the
Jamaicans is an easy one
least of all when in Jamaica
There is certainly no
reason to believe that this
coming game will be in any
To my mind, chances of
an outright victory for our
boys at Montego Bay next
week are slim.
One has to admit that
Jamaica starts with a big
psychological advantage in
Coupled with this, our
own spin trio _n which we
have relied heavily in recent
years, has always been far
less successful away from
In addition, our now-
established new-ball attack
FOUR ex-candidates of
Tapia in the last General
Elections are spearhead-
ing moves to call together
the members of the organ-
At a Cascade meeting
held on Monday night, a
resolution was passed
calling on the Tapia
National Executive to
summon the membership
to resolve the three sets of
for reorganization of the
Angela Cropper, Dennis
Pantin and Gloria Henry
called the meeting in the
light of the fact that the
agencies, of Tapia have
not been functioning in
their normal routine way
since the last sitting of
the Assembly on Dec-
ember 5, 1976.
The four Tapia mem-
bers made it quite clear
that there was no discus-
sion at their -meeting of
-the formation of any new
The Resolution calling
for the meeting of the
Assembly, signed by the
sixteen members, has
been sent to the Secretary
The report of this
meeting which appeared
in the Trinidad Guardian
of Wednesday January 5,
1977, announcing the
formation of a "right-
wing" party is a total
WEEKLY REVIEW PRINTED A
of Julien and Barthol-
omew has held few terrors
for the rest of the region's
batsmen since they have
There is no getting away
from the fact though, that
Julien could be one of the
world's most dangerous
bowlers in conditions that
siuit him; or that Barthol-
omew is one of the hardest
Larry Gomes will once
again be the one most
depended upon to get our
runs. Along with him,'we:
have his brother Sheldon,
Theo Cuffy the man-in-
form, Keith D'Heurieux.,
the experienced opener
Ron Faria and the West
Indian Test players, Skipper
Deryck Murray and all-
rounder Bernard Julien.
They have the task of
batting against the torrid
pace of Holding and, to a
lesser extent, of Uton
Dowe, plus the steady
spin of Jamaican Skipper
Maurice Foster and Benson
and Hedges' product
Our bowlers have to
contend with Foster the
most prolific run-scorer in
Shell-Shield cricket over
the years, the classy Law-
rence Rowe, and Jamaica's
two young batting giants
Jeff Dujon and Herbert
Chang. We certainly hope
that Deryck Murray and
his team do not come out
holding the nasty end of
THAT Tapia is the only surviving political weekly in Trinidad and Tobago today?
2 THAT our newspaper covers sport, literature and the arts as well as economics,
politics and public affairs?
THAT Tapia also covers Latin America and the entire Caribbean region?
4 THAT Tapia dates back to September 1969 and has come out every Friday
morning since November, 5, 1972?
5 THAT you can buy your Tapia from vendors downtown in Port-of-Spain and
San Fernando and from news agents all over the country?
* GET VALUE
0ND PUBLISHED BY THE TAPIA HOUSE PUBLISHING CO. LTD., 91 TUNAPUNA RD.J.NAPUNA. TL! dG2-512-G .vl ':' "' NI P\'t. ... .'-