The People's Court: Parts I and II [Spoken word] - Mutabaruka


THE PEOPLE'S COURT: Part I
By Mutabaruka

Sung introduction:
"Better must come, better must come,
Better must come, better must come,
Better must come, better must come,
Better must come, better must come..."

Judge 1,000 Years:
Order! Now my court is in session.
Will you please stand.

First, allow me to introduce myself.
My name is Judge 1,000 Years
Some people call me Judge Better Must Come.
I am from Africa and I come to try all you politicians for selling out black people.
In my court, only me talk 'cause I am vex,
This is The People's Court.
Now, what you have here today?

Clerk:
Well your honour, we have defendants Senator Sankey Sing and Senator Change Mih Mind
Also here is Mr. Religious Belief but I think we shall deal with the senators today,
At a later date we will deal with Religious Belief.

Judge 1,000 Years:
Alright, alright.
Politician Sankey Sing and Politician Change Mih Mind,
You are brought here for tricking black people,
By promising them good living every five years
You have been selling out black people to foreigners.

Sankey Sing:
Your honour...

Judge 1,000 Years:
Hush up!
Ah not finish yet!
What you want to do, promise me too?
I see rich getting richer and the poor dying...

Change Mih Mind:
Your honour, fundamentally, if I might say something at this point in time...

Judge 1,000 Years:
Shut up!
This is The People's Court and I not allowing any politriking here!
If you disturb me again I will give you 1,000 years for contempt of court.
You are also charged for charging the people too much taxes
Because of your mismanagement
Spending money then taxing the people for it.
You keep borrowing money from the IMF and the World Bank in the people's name
Continuing the oppression of black people by the same colonial masters
Why you can't learn?
No so called Third World country have been able to break loose from these money hogs.
You have black people in a vicious cycle...

Change Mih Mind:
If it wasn't for me, black people in this country would still be worshipping the Statue of Liberty.

Sankey Sing:
Well tell me how come you change your mind now?..

Judge 1,000 Years:
Shut up!
What you trying to do? Confuse the court?
I am giving you both 1,000 years on the first account.
From 1938 until now you have been dividing black people
You promising the people dem right back into slavery
Now, the only thing you have been truthful about is your thing about, 'Out of many, one'.

Sankey Sing:
Your honour,
That was taken from my Uncle Sam...

Judge 1,000 Years:
Yes, 'cause is only one people ah clean the street
Is one people ah eat out ah garbage heap
One people ah cut sugar cane
One people in ah sun and rain
And one people ah toil
And is one people ah see ah collect the coil...
And speaking of Uncle Sam,
I shall also charge you for giving rise to crack and cocaine in this country
By killing off the ganja plant that used to help our foreign exchange deficit
I am giving you 1,000 years for the crimes of Anthony Girlie Girlie,
Godfather Don And Mr. Crack Stone...

Change Mih Mind:
But your honour...

Judge 1,000 Years:
Shut up!!
You should be hanged but I shall be lenient and give you both 1,000 years.
I have been noticing that in your airports, only outgoing passengers are caught with drugs but never a tourist,
Yet we don't grow cocaine here
But it keep getting more common and common...

Sankey Sing:
But the tourist business is very vital to our national development!

Judge 1,000 Years:
Vital? Vital to who?
With your all-exclusive hotels,
Tourists will soon think that Negril is a next island by itself.
You claim that the poor can't take no more but you not giving them anything.
I see more Benz than Lada
And I hear that a car that cost $20,000 in Miami, cost $800,000 here.
What you do with all those extra money at Customs?
You keep talking about tourist harassment,
What you call what them doing with Jamaicans in foreign?
Every day they talking about Jamaican posse...

Sankey Sing:
Your honour,
As you can plainly see, when I was in power things were going to get right,
I had all the white people with money on my side
All the brown people were starting to feel as if they were living in Miami.

Judge 1,000 Years:
But what about black people?

Sankey Sing:
Well, as I was just getting around to them I lost the elections, your honour.

Change Mih Mind:
That is no excuse, your honour.
Before him, black people were getting very self sufficient
Brown people were starting to acquire homes in Miami...

Sankey Sing:
That is because they were running away, your honour.

Change Mih Mind:
White people started to say, "I and I" and "irie".

Sankey Sing:
Your honour,
If it wasn't for him and his black ideology, we would reach much further!

Change Mih Mind:
Your honour,
Him never have poor people on him mind,
That is why we having so much trouble now.

Sankey Sing:
Your honour,
Is him change, not me...

Change Mih Mind:
Your honour,
Him have a party of gangs! Is him say so himself!

Judge 1,000 Years:
Shut up!
I see no difference between both of you.
You both following the same thing that has, and is still keeping down black people.

Change Mih Mind:
When you not in power, your honour, it is easy to say this and that.
But when you have power, it is very different,
A different sankey you have to sing.

Judge 1,000 Years:
I am giving you both another 1,000 years.
None of you have the solutions to black people problem.
I suggest you read the philosophy and opinions of Marcus Garvey.
Study him carefully, then I might just grant you a pardon...
And another thing, before onnu begin onnu sentence,
Both of you should visit arcade
And see how poor women run business from nothing.
Let the domestic helpers show you how to use $130. to feed a family of six for one week.
Now take them away!!



THE PEOPLE'S COURT: Part II

By Mutabaruka

Sung introduction:
"Whiter than snow, whiter than snow
Lord wash me and make me whiter than snow..."

Clerk:
All rise! Judge 1000 years presiding.
Your honour, we have here Mr. Religious Belief and his henchman, Mr. Denomination.
Mr. Religious Belief, Mr Religious Belief! Please take the stand.

Judge 1,000 Years:
I am noticing that there is a new prosecutor here?

New Prosecutor:
Yes, your honour. After the last trial the other prosecutor had to resign.

Clerk:
Your honour, I think both of the gentlemen should take the stand at the same time
Considering the magnitude of charges against them.

Judge 1,000 Years: 
Mr. Religious Belief and Mr. Denomination,
I see where you also have been promising black people
But you are even worse than the politicians.
You promise them good living after they die
Yes, you say their reward is in heaven
It would appear to me that both of you have been to heaven already and have gotten yours.
The charges are too numerous to mention here.
For over 500 years you have been wanted,
From ever since you sent your relative here.
Yes, I am talking about the same Christopher Come-buss-us...

Mr. Religious Belief:
Your honour, the name is Christopher Columbus...

Judge 1,000 Years:
Hush up! Columbus, Come-buss-us, it don't matter!
He did come trick us.
It was you who went to the Americas and Africa
With your doctrine of civilizing the savages.
You taught black people to pray with their eyes closed,
When they open them, you had their land and they had the Bible.
With the Bible and gun you robbed, raped, murdered our foreparents in the name of Jesus.
You have divided black people into groups causing them to distrust each other
The first charge is for misleading black people into their color blind blindness.
You have black people worshiping everything white as good -
White Jesus, white winged angels, white Christmas...
Even the songs talk about, "Whiter than snow, I long to be."

Mr. Religious Belief:
The Bible did say, "Though your sins be like scarlet, they shall be as white as snow."

Judge 1,000 Years:
So you trying to tell me that if my sins are white instead of scarlet,
God will accept my sins?
And by the way, Michael Angelo painting of his uncle...
For years black people keep revering this picture as the true picture of Christ.
All your religious holidays originate in Europe,
Everything in Heaven is white, everything in Hell is black
Is a lucky thing Jamaicans start to visit Hell
and really see for themselves.

Mr. Religious Belief:
Your honour, if I may be allowed to speak. Our divine and beloved father, Pope....

Judge 1,000 Years:
Shut up! Dope... or Pope, I will not allow you to ask any questions here.
I have never heard any one asking you any questions in one of your church services
You are also charged for collecting money under false pretense
You keep saying the church have no money
Yet every little open land have a tent for a few months then a massive building later
Did not your Bible say that your body is the temple of God?

Clerk:
Your honour, Mr. Denomination has been collecting money from people,
Saying that he can get them into Miami via the Bahamas
Through the guise of Christian crusades.
Through such a scheme, people have been jailed, Sir, trying to reach Miami.

Judge 1,000 Years:
What? I thought you would be trying to get them to heaven via your church.
You are also charged for misinterpretation
You have twisted the Bible to suit white supremacy
You have taken stories and quotes from other books much older than the Bible
And made them into myths.
Have you ever read the Egyptian Book of the Dead?

Mr. Denomination:
The what?

Judge 1,000 Years:
It is because of you why the DJ's have no respect for our black women
You have painted a picture of women as the originator of sin
You have made women look inferior in all your religious books
You have been preaching a sexist doctrine to our people
From Eve till now you have blamed women for the downfall of the world
You blame Delilah for Samson's stupidity
You have even placed sin on sex saying that Mary was a virgin all her life
With these images, what do you expect from our people?
You even have the earth as only 6,000 years old.
Maybe the history of Europe is only 6,000 years,
But black people have been here long before... long, long before.

Mr. Denomination:
Your honour...

Judge 1,000 Years:
Hush up! Didn't I tell you not to interrupt?
You shall get an extra 1,000 years for contempt of court!

Clerk:
Your honour, there is a certain denomination that have been given legal status here
That said denomination has been preaching for years that black people cannot enter heaven
Yet their recruiters travel around on bicycles two by two, trying to win souls.

Judge 1,000 Years: 
I have heard of this.
I hear they call themselves Church of the Latter Day Saints of Jesus Christ or Morons

Mr. Denomination:
The word is Mormons, your honour.
You have to understand that things change....

Judge 1,000 Years:
Hush up! Understand?
Black people have been under the stand for centuries.
These Morons or Mormons as you call them should never be allowed into a country
That is predominantly black to preach about God.
You have been collaborating with the politicians to trick black people.
You have branded voodoo and obeah and all African oriented traditions as paganism
Yet you have the people going to church,
Trying to drink the blood of Jesus and eat his flesh.
And I did hear you teaching them to pray and I quote,
"Lead us not into temptation..."
It is you they should be asking to lead them not into temptation.
When since the Lord lead people into temptation
That you should be asking him not to do it?

Mr. Denomination:
That was a slight misinterpretation.

Judge 1,000 Years:
Remember the Baker?
Remember the one who was Swagging hearts;
Remember the one who was using his mouth to Orally-rob-earth
All of these was collecting souls under false pretense
Mr. Religious Belief and Mr. Denomination,
I hereby sentence you both to 1,000 years for swindling poor people by way of radio and TV
I also give you 1,000 years for each year that black people
Have been suffering since Columbus came here.
Now, take them away!!

Source: The lyrics posted on this blog are often transcribed directly from performances. Although it is my intention to faithfully transcribe I do not get all the words and I have a knack for hearing the wrong thing. Please feel free to correct me or to fill in the words that I miss by dropping me a message via e-mail. I'd be forever grateful. Thanks in advance!
..............................................................................................................................
"Patria est communis omnium parens" - Our native land is the common parent of us all. Keep it beautiful, make it even more so.

Blessed is all of creation
Blessed be my beautiful people
Blessed be the day of our awakening
Blessed is my country
Blessed are her patient hills.

Mweh ka allay!
Guanaguanare

Music To Our Ears..."El Sistema" For Trinidad and Tobago

Social Development looks at music to fight crime.
Trinidad & Tobago's Newsday | Wednesday, December 29 2010

Minister of the People and Social Development Glenn Ramadharsingh yesterday sat with renowned musician and artist Dr Pat Bishop and three musicians from Venezuela to have preliminary discussions on a new and innovative crime-fighting initiative centred around music, art and sports.

The programme will be based on El Sistema, a publicly financed voluntary sector music education programme in Venezuela and will be tailored to provide youths with an alternative to crime.

Eleazar José Yegüez, regional coordinator of El Sistema in Sucre State; Jesus Beltran Acosta, director of Cariaco’s Orquestra; musician Llelina Poryillo and interpreter Mildred Yegüez- Francois were on hand to provide the ministry with ideas and direction.

Ramadharsingh said he saw a model of this programme in Colombia where there were high levels of poverty but music was used to combat crime and other social ills in those communities. He was particularly impressed that no one was turned away because of lack of finances or on the grounds of proficiency. Read more...

El Sistema
July 20, 2008 2:55 PM

Through a system of early training and local orchestras, Venezuela has developed an orchestra that is world famous. Bob Simon reports. (This segment was originally broadcast on April 13, 2008.)


Read more: El Sistema: Changing Lives Through Music
..............................................................................................................................




A Note From The Gull


El Sistema - an excellent idea originating in Venezuela, our closest neighbour in the region. Congratulations to the Minister of the People and Social Development, Glenn Ramadharsingh, for recognising the worth of this programme and for actively working to secure for Trinidad and Tobago its many documented benefits for our young people at risk.

Excerpt from video above:
"In the midst of that poverty The System uses classical music to instill self- esteem and confidence. Popular music, Rafael says, wouldn't work. "What they have at home on the radio is popular music all the time. Their father who drinks everyday, gets drunk with that music. So you have to give them something different and when they sit in one of these chairs in the orchestra, they think they are in another country, in another planet and they start changing."

How many times in the past have we heard brother Morgan Job's voice crying in the wilderness, saying the same thing about music and making his plea for the uplifting of the souls and spirits of our children? Like with anything else there is the good and the not so good in what we produce. Some of our popular music is brilliant but the messages conveyed by the rest deliver more spirit blows than blessings. Think, for example, of the number of songs which have emerged in recent times which deliberately glorify and promote abject drunkenness?

Recommendation: Look also at the Montessori and Waldorf educational systems and take the best of both to adapt to our pre and primary school environments and the training of our early childhood educators.

"Patria est communis omnium parens" - Our native land is the common parent of us all. Keep it beautiful, make it even more so.

Blessed is all of creation
Blessed be my beautiful people
Blessed be the day of our awakening
Blessed is my country
Blessed are her patient hills.

Mweh ka allay!
Guanaguanare

Bottle and Spoon Jam [Song]


Uploaded by IsDePanInMe

BOTTLE AND SPOON JAM

By Leon Coldero

I wish that parang was like long ago [Aye yay yaye, oye yoy yoy]
With a box bass, a bottle and a cuatro [Aye yay yaye, oye yoy yoy]
Going from house to house, people they don't know
Singing serenal and aguinaldo
Some of them don't know what they singing
Is then I does know is Christmas morning.

If you hear them boy, them paranging [Bottle and spoon jam]
They sounding like J'Ouvert morning [Bottle and spoon jam]
If you hear them boy, them paranging [Bottle and spoon jam]
They sounding like J'Ouvert morning [Bottle and spoon jam]

Boy, I sit down there just wondering [Aye yay yaye, oye yoy yoy]
From where this rhythm was coming [Aye yay yaye, oye yoy yoy]
When I thought was iron I hearing
Was a bottle and spoon they was pounding
If you hear how sweet this thing was sounding
Is then I realise was Christmas morning

If you hear them boy, them paranging [Bottle and spoon jam]
They sounding like J'Ouvert morning [Bottle and spoon jam]
If you hear them boy, them paranging [Bottle and spoon jam]
They sounding like J'Ouvert morning [Bottle and spoon jam]

I get up and I peep through my curtain [Aye yay yaye, oye yoy yoy]
To see what was really happening [Aye yay yaye, oye yoy yoy]
I realise is by me they was coming
Same time I run to the kitchen
If you see me how I preparing
I just catch myself, is Christmas morning!

If you see them boy, them paranging [Bottle and spoon jam]
They sounding like J'Ouvert morning [Bottle and spoon jam]
If you see them boy, them paranging [Bottle and spoon jam]
They sounding like J'Ouvert morning [Bottle and spoon jam]

I wish that parang was like long ago [Aye yay yaye, oye yoy yoy]
With a box bass, a bottle and a cuatro [Aye yay yaye, oye yoy yoy]
Going from house to house, people they don't know
Singing serenal and aguinaldo
Some of them don't know what they singing
Is then I does know is Christmas morning.

If you hear them boy, them paranging [Bottle and spoon jam]
They sounding like J'Ouvert morning [Bottle and spoon jam]

Well I pick up my hat and my cuatro [Aye yay yaye, oye yoy yoy]
Heading straight for Lopinot [Aye yay yaye, oye yoy yoy]
When they hear Coldero was coming
If you see them people preparing
All kind of wild meat they cooking
They just realise is Christmas morning.

I see and I know [Parang music music sweet for so!]
I see and I know [Ask Leon Coldero]
I see and I know [Parang music music sweet for so!]
I see and I know [Let we go and ask ---------]

Source: The lyrics posted on this blog are often transcribed directly from performances. Although it is my intention to faithfully transcribe I do not get all the words and I have a knack for hearing the wrong thing. Please feel free to correct me or to fill in the words that I miss by dropping me a message via e-mail. I'd be forever grateful. Thanks in advance!
..............................................................................................................................
"Patria est communis omnium parens" - Our native land is the common parent of us all. Keep it beautiful, make it even more so.

Blessed is all of creation
Blessed be my beautiful people
Blessed be the day of our awakening
Blessed is my country
Blessed are her patient hills.

Mweh ka allay!
Guanaguanare

Bella Trinidad! [Song]


Uploaded by Mastamindproductions

BELLA TRINIDAD
Lyrics written by Leon Coldero
Music produced and composed by Shawn Mastamind Noel

ANY HELP WITH THESE LYRICS WILL BE APPRECIATED

Bella Trinidad, bella Trinidad, bella Trinidad, cancho de melodía
Bella Trinidad, bella Trinidad, bella Trinidad, isla de alegría.

Cristopher Colon --------------------------------
Buscando el oro si no nada de ------------
Cristopher Colon --------------------------------
Buscando el oro si no nada de ------------

Bella Trinidad, bella Trinidad, bella Trinidad, cancho de melodía
Bella Trinidad, bella Trinidad, bella Trinidad, isla de alegría.

Tres picos ---------- es --------- en el mar
Y ---------- les nombró Trinidad.
Tres picos ---------- es --------- en el mar
Y ---------- les nombró Trinidad.

Bella Trinidad, bella Trinidad, bella Trinidad, cancho de melodía
Bella Trinidad, bella Trinidad, bella Trinidad, isla de alegría.

En el playa de Mayaro, ha eso de melodia
--------------- cantaron ------------- comida
En el playa de Mayaro, ha eso de melodia
--------------- cantaron ------------- comida.

Bella Trinidad, bella Trinidad, bella Trinidad, cancho de melodía
Bella Trinidad, bella Trinidad, bella Trinidad, isla de alegría.
Bella Trinidad, bella Trinidad, bella Trinidad, cancho de melodía
Bella Trinidad, bella Trinidad, bella Trinidad, isla de alegría...

Source: The lyrics posted on this blog are often transcribed directly from performances. Although it is my intention to faithfully transcribe I do not get all the words and I have a knack for hearing the wrong thing. Please feel free to correct me or to fill in the words that I miss by dropping me a message via e-mail. I'd be forever grateful. Thanks in advance!
..............................................................................................................................
"Patria est communis omnium parens" - Our native land is the common parent of us all. Keep it beautiful, make it even more so.

Blessed is all of creation
Blessed be my beautiful people
Blessed be the day of our awakening
Blessed is my country
Blessed are her patient hills.

Mweh ka allay!
Guanaguanare

Sweetbread [Instrumental]


Uploaded by Mastamindproductions

SWEETBREAD [Instrumental]
By Da Spirits
Music written, composed and produce by Shawn Mastamind Noel for Mastamind Productions
..............................................................................................................................
"Patria est communis omnium parens" - Our native land is the common parent of us all. Keep it beautiful, make it even more so.

Blessed is all of creation
Blessed be my beautiful people
Blessed be the day of our awakening
Blessed is my country
Blessed are her patient hills.

Mweh ka allay!
Guanaguanare

Maria [Song]


Uploaded by Ancil Lynch

MARIA
By Crazy

I took the role of lead singer, Parang-rama in Arima
Fans heard of my parang band so thousands flock the grand stand
Dave Elcock was the MC when he introduced me
People jumping like Carnival to my rendition of serenal.

Alagata alpagata, uno rum, uno paratha
Maria, Maria, Maria, mi corazon
From Port of Spain to Fyzabad, everybody know Crazy mad
Maria, Maria, Maria, mi corazon!

I sang on The Annunciation to show my appreciation
Then the crowd went wild, I sang on the birth of The Child
My next song, an aguinaldo with good rhythm and fast tempo
Place break down a second time to see this parang singer wine.

Muchachita, muchacita, vamos bailar, vamos bailar
Maria, Maria, Maria, mi corazon
Come on honey, squeeze me tighter, tighter, tighter, tighter
Maria, Maria, Maria, mi corazon!

Big singers like Henry Perreira, Daisy Voisin, Gloria Alcazar
Papa Goon, Clarita Rivas, Brito and the Lara Brothers
They boo them when they done sing, people pelt them with orange skin
Pandemonium it was up there, Crazy is all people want to hear.

El poquito, el poquito, this place have too much mosquito
Maria, Maria, Maria, mi corazon
Cocorico, cocorico, I got this ----- from Toco
Maria, Maria, Maria, mi corazon!

Nearing the end of the fete, a garland was placed round my neck
Muchas gracias, todo el mundo your reception magnifico
That night I will remember, the whole place caught Crazymania
When I collected my dinero, I sang Manzanare to end the show.

If you got to Manzanilla, you could get your chip-chip water
Maria, Maria, Maria, mi corazon
And when you drink your chip-chip water, you could fight a Bengal tiger
Maria, Maria, Maria, mi corazon!

Source: The lyrics posted on this blog are often transcribed directly from performances. Although it is my intention to faithfully transcribe I do not get all the words and I have a knack for hearing the wrong thing. Please feel free to correct me or to fill in the words that I miss by dropping me a message via e-mail. I'd be forever grateful. Thanks in advance!
..............................................................................................................................
 

A Note From The Gull


Thank you, Tio Loco!

This is one of my favourite songs of the season. Now, I were asked to invent a new category of parang into which I can place this song, I'd call it a prime example of a "Locura" - craziness.

"Patria est communis omnium parens" - Our native land is the common parent of us all. Keep it beautiful, make it even more so.

Blessed is all of creation
Blessed be my beautiful people
Blessed be the day of our awakening
Blessed is my country
Blessed are her patient hills.

Mweh ka allay!
Guanaguanare

Peace, Hope, Love, Joy!

Painting of Red Poinsettia by Susan Pechacek; Music by Robert Munro and others.

Special Christmas greetings to King Selewa, Louis, Liane, Max, Mistou, Winsome, Wsteffie,
all the anonyMICE who left comments and the followers of this blog
who've kept me company this year.
Wishing you all, and especially my T&T people,
a blessed Christmas Eve night and a beautiful Christmas Day.
Try not to stay out too late tonight and be careful on the roads.
Enjoy sharing the special Christmas love with your families tomorrow.
For the Christians, I hope that Jesus will find a gift or two under each tree.
And even though the birthday boy's name might not be on many of our gift cards,

He is there in the sincere, loving thoughts behind the simplest of gifts,
especially those we did not buy at any store
and especially those that we've been giving each other from our hearts all year through.
LOVE, LOVE, LOVE...
..............................................................................................................................
"Patria est communis omnium parens" - Our native land is the common parent of us all. Keep it beautiful, make it even more so.

Blessed is all of creation
Blessed be my beautiful people
Blessed be the day of our awakening
Blessed is my country
Blessed are her patient hills.

Mweh ka allay!
Guanaguanare

Vous Souhaiter Un Noël Rempli D'Amour.


NOEL C'EST L'AMOUR - CHRISTMAS IS LOVE

Noël c'est l'amour, viens chanter toi mon frère [Christmas is love, come sing, my brother]
Noël c'est l'amour, c'est un cœur éternel [Christmas is love, it is an eternal heart]
La voix de ma mère, sa voix familière [My mother's voice, her familiar voice]
Chantait douce et claire, "Un enfant est né." [Singing sweet and clear, "A child is born."]
La voix de ma mère, amour et prière [The voice of my mother, love and prayer]
La voix de ma mère, qui m'a tant donné. [The voice of my mother who gave me so much]
Des lumières dans la neige [Lights in the snow]
Mille étoiles du berger [Thousands of stars of the shepherd]
Et des hommes en cortège [And people in procession]
Vont chanter la joie d'aimer [Will sing the joy of loving.]
Noël c'est l'amour dans les yeux de l'enfance [Christmas is love in the eyes of children]
Noël c'est l'amour, le plus beau, le plus grand [Noel is love, the greatest, most beautiful love]
Un monde commence d'un peu d'espérance [A world begins with a little hope]
D'un ange qui danse auprès d'un enfant [Of an angel who dances with a child.]
Noël c'est l'amour, viens chanter toi mon frère [Christmas is love, come sing, my brother]
Noël c'est l'amour, c'est un cœur éternel [Christmas is love, it is an eternal heart]
Reviens moi mon frère et vois la lumière [Come back to me, my brother and see the light]
La nuit de lumière qui descend du ciel [The night of light which comes down from heaven]
Et moi sur la terre j'entends douce et claire [And on the earth, I hear, sweet and clear]
La voix de ma mère qui chante "Noël". [The voice of my mother singing, "Christmas"]

Merci, Maman! Je t'adore. Joyeux Noël!
..............................................................................................................................
"Patria est communis omnium parens" - Our native land is the common parent of us all. Keep it beautiful, make it even more so.

Blessed is all of creation
Blessed be my beautiful people
Blessed be the day of our awakening
Blessed is my country
Blessed are her patient hills.

Mweh ka allay!
Guanaguanare

President Chavez: "Give Mr Palmer A Coffee From Me, Then 'Bye-Bye'."

Predictably ignoring the opportunities for introspection and soul-searching that the WikiLeaks' revelations have provided, it has been business as usual for Americay. In the Americas, Venezuela has provided them with their most recent opportunity to do some sabre-rattling and to appear to be promising to drop some retaliatory slaps on that country when the moment is right.

The story is that back in July of this year, following Ambassador-Designate Larry Palmer's confirmation hearing to be U.S. Ambassador to Venezuela, Mr. Palmer was asked twelve questions about Venezuela by Senator Dick Lugar, the Ranking Member of the U.S. Senate Foreign Relations Committee. In his questions, Senator Lugar covered:
"human rights and intimidation of citizens in Venezuela based on their political beliefs,
current and future governability after the elections,
a recent Government Accountability Office report stating that the National Guard is deeply involved in the narcotics business,
President Chávez breaking off ties with Colombia,
Venezuelan-Cuban military-to-military interaction,
President Chávez's meddling in the affairs of Colombia,
President Chávez's threat to cut oil supplies to the United States in case of a military attack from Colombia,
Venezuela’s economy and its Central Bank, and
whether the U.S. representation should be downgraded to a level commensurate with the attention and respect granted." SOURCE
You will have to read Larry Palmer's answers to understand why President Hugo Chavez decided at that point that this man was not going to be allowed to function as USA Ambassador to Venezuela. Would the USA accept Hugo Chavez, if he were a diplomat, in their country as Venezuelan Ambassador to the USA? The article below, preceded by the relevant quotes extracted, explains the reasons for President Chavez's antipathy that led to the actions which he took when his concerns were ignored by the sending country, the USA:
SELECTED QUOTES: "President Hugo Chavez's government formally rejected Washington's nominee for ambassador Monday, and the U.S. State Department said the decision will have consequences on relations with Venezuela."

"State Department spokesman P.J. Crowley said Venezuela's government presented an American diplomat in Caracas with a note withdrawing its consent for Larry Palmer to be appointed ambassador. Crowley reiterated that the U.S. stands behind its nomination of Palmer, who is awaiting Senate confirmation."

"Tensions flared over the issue as Chavez warned on Saturday that if Palmer arrives in Venezuela he would be detained and put on the next flight home. Palmer angered Chavez by suggesting during the Senate confirmation process that morale is low in Venezuela's military and that he is concerned Colombian rebels are finding refuge in Venezuela...."

"Chavez, for his part, has publicly been saying for months that Palmer would not be welcome under any circumstances."
US: Chavez's rejection of diplomat to have impact.
By Ian James
The Associated Press
The Washington Post | Monday, December 20, 2010; 4:57 PM

"CARACAS, Venezuela -- President Hugo Chavez's government formally rejected Washington's nominee for ambassador Monday, and the U.S. State Department said the decision will have consequences on relations with Venezuela.

State Department spokesman P.J. Crowley said Venezuela's government presented an American diplomat in Caracas with a note withdrawing its consent for Larry Palmer to be appointed ambassador. Crowley reiterated that the U.S. stands behind its nomination of Palmer, who is awaiting Senate confirmation.

Tensions flared over the issue as Chavez warned on Saturday that if Palmer arrives in Venezuela he would be detained and put on the next flight home. Palmer angered Chavez by suggesting during the Senate confirmation process that morale is low in
Venezuela's military and that he is concerned Colombian rebels are finding refuge in Venezuela.

Crowley said Venezuela's rejection of Palmer "has consequences in terms of our relationship with Venezuela."

He said U.S. officials have been discussing the issue with the Venezuelans for months and have warned that if Chavez's government withdraws approval for Palmer's appointment "it would have an impact on our ongoing relations."

Chavez, for his part, has publicly been saying for months that Palmer would not be welcome under any circumstances.

"They've made this decision, and obviously we will evaluate what to do," Crowley told reporters. "We will evaluate the consequences to our relationship."

He would not comment on possible U.S. responses.

A Venezuelan foreign ministry official, Temir Porras, presented a formal diplomatic protest on the matter to the U.S. Embassy's charge d'affaires, Darnall Steuart, during a meeting Monday in Caracas. Steuart said the U.S. regrets Venezuela's stance, and it "will bear the responsibility for that action."

Chavez, whose economy relies heavily on U.S. oil sales, initially expressed optimism that under President Barack Obama, years of hostility between Venezuela and the U.S. could ease. But tensions have persisted, with Chavez accusing Washington of trying to undermine him, and U.S. officials increasingly voicing concerns about threats to democracy in Venezuela." SOURCE

So now we have the USA making threats like:
US State Department spokesman Philip Crowley: "We regret this action taken by the Venezuelan government and it will bear responsibility for that action," he added. SOURCE
"He said the Obama administration will now "evaluate" what action to take.

"We're not arguing that it is within Venezuela's rights to take this action. What we're saying, having taken this action, there will be a consequence in terms of US-Venezuelan relations," Crowley said." SOURCE

So while the USA acknowledged that it is "within Venezuela's rights to take this action" the unspoken message is that rights become wrongs when they do not serve the USA's interests or when they provide a safe haven for those who do not agree with its worldview.

For those of you who are wondering, Venezuela is perfectly within its rights as the receiving state to refuse an ambassador selected by a sending state. The Vienna Convention on Diplomatic Relations [1961] covers this aspect of relations between states. Articles 2 and 9 are relevant to this particular event:
Article 2
The establishment of diplomatic relations between States, and of permanent diplomatic missions, takes place by mutual consent.

Article 9
1.The receiving State may at any time and without having to explain its decision, notify the sending State that the head of the mission or any member of the diplomatic staff of the mission is persona non grata or that any other member of the staff of the mission is not acceptable. In any such case, the sending State shall, as appropriate, either recall the person concerned or terminate his functions with the mission. A person may be declared non grata or not acceptable before arriving in the territory of the receiving State.

2. If the sending State refuses or fails within a reasonable period to carry out its obligations under paragraph 1 of this article, the receiving State may refuse to recognize the person concerned as a member of the mission.

Understand that no legal liability will be incurred by any State for refusing to send or receive diplomatic representatives and that every sovereign state has the right to make these decisions. President Hugo Chavez is of the opinion that "he [Larry Palmer] has disqualified himself by breaking all the rules of diplomacy, by prejudging all of us, even our armed forces." SOURCE

I consider this a plausible reason for refusing Larry Palmer.

Refusals based on plausible reasons should not be considered a cause of rupture but the problem in this case is that, for obvious reasons, the USA will NOT agree that President Hugo Chavez has based his refusal on plausible reasons.

"The Cyclopædia of Political Science, Political Economy, and the Political History of the United States" explains right of legation or diplomatic intercourse at paragraph I.23.7
"—II. RIGHT OF LEGATION. The right of legation is active and passive, that is, the state which has the right to receive diplomatic envoys has also the right to send them to other states. The right of legation is a consequence of sovereignty. Its exercise belongs to the representative of the state. It is optional and not obligatory. Nevertheless the refusal to receive the minister of a foreign power in time of peace may be considered as a cause of rupture, if the refusal be not founded on plausible reasons. Among these the most important may be the person of the minister himself, who may be objectionable to the government to which he is accredited. When one state denies to another the right to accredit ministers to it, it refrains from exercising the like right itself."

Keep in mind that last year the Vatican refused the last of three Ambassadors selected to represent the US at the Holy See. Caroline Kennedy was refused in April 2009 because she is not pro-life. According to the Vatican, their refusals were based on the "plausible reason" that these ambassadors support for abortion disqualified them from representing the USA to the Holy See.

What was the USA's response to that? Did they tell the Vatican that there would be "CONSEQUENCES"? Did they tell the Pope that they regretted his actions and that the Vatican would "BEAR RESPONSIBILITY FOR THOSE ACTIONS."? Not at all! Because monkey know which tree to climb, "The White House declined to comment on the matter."

Although I continue to refuse to put my head on a block for any human being [including myself], I cannot disagree with President Hugo Chávez Frías in this matter.

Update: Jan 7th 2011 - Chavez-Clinton surprise meeting reduces tension.Link
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"Patria est communis omnium parens" - Our native land is the common parent of us all. Keep it beautiful, make it even more so.

Blessed is all of creation
Blessed be my beautiful people
Blessed be the day of our awakening
Blessed is my country
Blessed are her patient hills.

Mweh ka allay!
Guanaguanare

Mr. Trinidad [Song]


Uploaded by foreignmovies

MR. TRINIDAD

By Maestro (1974)

Mr. Trinidad, tell me what scene you on?
Do you just like political confusion?
You criticizing the way you live
Yet you can't produce an alternative.
You say you against the power structure
You ent like the Opposition either
But take care you jump out the hot water
And end up in the centre of the fire.

Because you refuse to vote in election
But then you ent want revolution,
You strongly against Communism
You walk out on colonialism
You say Eric Williams had to go
But who to replace him, you ent know
So to make a long story short from in front
Trinidadians ent really know wey they want.

My friend, if you don't want democracy
The opposite is guerrilla activity
If you don't want democratic improvement
You had to want a revolutionist government
And yet when Guy Harewood went in the hills
With Jennifer [Beverly] Jones, you let them get kill
All you doing is grinning and skylarking
You come like the ass in the lion skin.

Because you say Robinson is a traitor
You say worse than that about Granger
You say Kamal seeking his own interests
You call Millette, a Marxist Leninist
You ent want DAC, neither DLP
And you say PNM is only ratchifee
Well, you tying up yourself, I go tell you why
Trinidadians just like plenty mamaguy.

Afro-Trinidadian talking Black Bower
It’s not wrong for a man to love his culture
Yes, you walk around with your afro plaits
And you dragging alpagat and fat sapat
But although they rapping 'bout Africa
You eating roti like if you born in India
So who you go blame when you make your vote
And end up like a cat on a hot tin roof.

'Cause you saying you going Afro all the way
Yet you smile when they bring in Tony May
Williams say he want to retire
You beg him to stay a lil longer
You reject Karl's Act of Public Order
Now you want the same Karl for Prime Minister
Like your sense of reasoning goes and comes
It won’t surprise me if you call back Albert Gomes.

You say that you didn’t want no dictator
Yet you want one fella to reign forever
Abbot help Malik, you say he guilty
Parmessar did the same, yet you set him free
Long ago you didn’t want Fidel Castro
But now you say the same Castro is a hero
Well, this attitude like Humpty Dumpty
You might fall off the wall eventually.

Because you say Butler was too high handed
Stephen Maharaj uneducated
You say that we can't trust Jamadar
You find Seukeran too congosah
You say the accent is on the young man
Yet you went and call back Ashford Sinanan
'Cause you go call back until you call disaster
Like the colonial days of the slave master.

Indian-Trinidadian, naive as ever
That is why they form the Maha Sabha
They conservative, only talking race
Yet you seeing so much dougla all 'round the place
They say they doesn’t eat pork but then
How come them and black pudding is such good friend
You making your own self a pappyshow
You might end up just like Rumpelstiltskin-o

You call Batsford woman a bad john
Yet he spending your money in London
You say the country’s ace crime fighter
Is a regular ganja smoker
You call Raffique Shah a seditious traitor
Now that same traitor is a union leader
It won’t surprise me if you move Malik from Death Row
And make him Minister of Home Affairs tomorrow.

Rasta-Trinidadian walking, talking peace
Yet he always in trouble with the police
Saying "Peace and love, Right on brother man."
Yet if you watch him hard, he want to break your hand
They say they doesn’t eat pork but then how come
Them and black pudding is such good friend
They making their own self a pappyshow
You might end up just like Rumpelstiltskin-o.

Theodore Guerra prosecute soldiers
For that he get one set of horrors
And then when Murray gun down Walker
They run and they call the same Guerra
You say Mahabir too quiet and soft
And Victor Campbell is a big show off
You ent want Eric, Kamal, Karl neither Pat
If is a bad john you want, well call Doctor Rat.

My friend if you don't want democracy
The opposite is guerrilla activity
If you don't want democratic improvement
You had to want a revolutionist government
And yet when Guy Harewood went in the hills
With Jennifer [Beverly] Jones, you let them get kill
All you doing is grinning and skylarking
You come like the ass in the lion skin.

Because you call Robinson a traitor
You say worse than that about Granger
You say Kamal seeking his own interests
You call Millette a Marxist Leninist
You ent want DAC, neither DLP
Yet you say PNM is only ratchifee
Well, if you bringing back dead horses on the line
Well, is all right if you bring back Learie Constantine.

Source: The lyrics posted on this blog are often transcribed directly from performances. Although it is my intention to faithfully transcribe I do not get all the words and I have a knack for hearing the wrong thing. Please feel free to correct me or to fill in the words that I miss by dropping me a message via e-mail. I'd be forever grateful. Thanks in advance!
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A Note From The Gull

KAISO ! Thank you Maestro. I found this interesting bit of information submitted by Quelvisv about the recording of this calypso. It can be found among the visitors' comments below this calypso on YouTube:
"Many of us don't know the history and facts about this great calypso. This calypso was never recorded by Maestro this recording was recorded live at the Calypso Revue Tent at the Princess Building in city of Port Of Spain in 1974. It was not until after Maestro's death (August 31, 1977) when the late Rocky Mc Collin in around 1981 found it of vital importance to make this audio tape and record it for us today. One must thank Mr. Collin for his vision or this calypso would have been lost."
"Patria est communis omnium parens" - Our native land is the common parent of us all. Keep it beautiful, make it even more so.

Blessed is all of creation
Blessed be my beautiful people
Blessed be the day of our awakening
Blessed is my country
Blessed are her patient hills.

Mweh ka allay!
Guanaguanare

The Story Of Life [Song]


Uploaded by kaiso22

THE STORY OF LIFE

By Mighty Shadow

While going through some torture and strife?
Well, I sat and I asked myself, "What is life?"
Why all this struggling to survive?
What is the sense of being alive?

You small and your Mama tell you born
You fighting to grow up to be a man
You grow up, you fall down and bounce your head
You don't even know if you end up dead.

Chorus:
What is life?
Can anyone around give an explanation?
What is life?
Life is something no one will understand
Take the trees, they grow big and strong just to be cut down
Tell me the sense, this tree was ever in existence?

Take two fishes fighting for survival
The big one must swallow the small
Then up comes a big shark from nowhere
Well, he makes a grab and swallow the pair
Then up comes the fisherman with he rope
Well he grab the shark and he gone and cook
Next time he wind up in the cemetery
And worms end up eating he.

Chorus:

What is life?
Can anyone around give an explanation?
What is life?
Life is something no one will understand
Take the trees, they grow big and strong just to be cut down
Tell me the sense, this tree was ever in existence?

Well, a worm in a valley eating some germs
Up came a fowl who eat up the worm,
And then a manicou eat the fowl
And then a hunter catch the manicou on the prowl
Well he grab the animal and he gone and cook
Next thing he wind up dead like a mook
And when he end up in the cemetery
Same worms end up eating he.

Chorus:

What is life?
Can anyone around give an explanation?
What is life?
Life is something no one will understand
Take the trees, they grow big and strong just to be cut down
Tell me the sense. This tree was ever in existence?

Source: The lyrics posted on this blog are often transcribed directly from performances. Although it is my intention to faithfully transcribe I do not get all the words and I have a knack for hearing the wrong thing. Please feel free to correct me or to fill in the words that I miss by dropping me a message via e-mail. I'd be forever grateful. Thanks in advance!
..............................................................................................................................
"Patria est communis omnium parens" - Our native land is the common parent of us all. Keep it beautiful, make it even more so.

Blessed is all of creation
Blessed be my beautiful people
Blessed be the day of our awakening
Blessed is my country
Blessed are her patient hills.

Mweh ka allay!
Guanaguanare

Trini Shark, Pleased To Make Your Acquaintance.


...Listening To Our People

Today, I discovered an interesting channel on YouTube. It is called ActivismTT. I started viewing some of the videos and I was drawn to the Trini Shark series of commentaries because I took an instant liking to the shark. Well that was the hook that got my attention.

"Trini Shark on Communication" is one of my favourites. Embedding is disabled so I don't have the pleasure of displaying it here but do go to ActivismTT's channel and have a look. I have provided below a transcript of this particular comment by Trini Shark:

Trini Shark: "Hi folks!
Trini Shark wants to know when will the government of Trinidad and Tobago and everybody involved in the leadership realise that communication involves a two-way exchange. We have Kamla, UNC. We have PNM, etc. tweeting, Facebook, all ONE-WAY. No opportunity to dialogue, to discuss. Trini Shark not like that. You talk to me, I listen. And remember, beware, there are lots of sharks out there.
Bye for now."

This is a subject that is close to my heart and I have written about it under Operation Mindstrap. For me, it is not enough to hear promises that the government is going to listen. I want to see steps being taken to operationalise that promise to "listen" and I do not mean interception of citizens' communications.

How is our government listening, and to whom? Is it noting only what is reported and analysed by the media? Is it collecting the comments made by online readers? Is it studying what the MP's hear by chance in their communities? Is it paying attention mainly to its support base? Is it going along with opinions and directives from interfering and not necessarily benign external parties and/or their internal agents?

What mechanisms are in place for soliciting and acting upon feedback [complaints, concerns, ideas] from the population? I always remember that famous conclusion last year gleaned from "cottage meeting" polls à la Tesheira that the property tax was supported by "the majority of the population." For me that was just more evidence of a government that was pretending to be listening. And when Roodal Moonilal said in parliament, after the appointment of the foreign CoP was approved earlier this year:
"the average man in the street did not care whether the person appointed was local or foreign.

“Whether it is a local or foreigner, they do not care if it is Dwayne Gibbs, Lance Gibbs or Andy Gibbs, let us move on to the next challenge..." SOURCE
how exactly had he had come by this information? Granted, the persons taking the time to comment online may not have been comprised only of "average" men in the street but I got the distinct impression from the debates, that those for and against had equal weight.

I understand that it is easier for a government to just make it up as it goes along to convince us that the homework has been done and that the best decisions have been made. But if it could get just this one promise right - the promise to listen and deliberate upon and act upon what is heard, it would be the foundation upon which all other deliverables could be achieved.

The people, our people, live in all the corners of this nation and all across the globe. They know what the problems are and they are the government's best scouts. If they know that it wants to hear, they will talk. If they understand that it is really listening, they will help this government to get it right. Why shouldn't any government want to get it right?

Trini Shark, really pleased to make your acquaintance.
..............................................................................................................................
"Patria est communis omnium parens" - Our native land is the common parent of us all. Keep it beautiful, make it even more so.

Blessed is all of creation
Blessed be my beautiful people
Blessed be the day of our awakening
Blessed is my country
Blessed are her patient hills.

Mweh ka allay!
Guanaguanare

PNM Mule to Cobo PP: "Stop Scapegoating And Start Governing."


...Accepting Useful Messages For The Nation Even When Their Messengers Annoy.
"Though quite prepared to deal with any mischief directed at me, I hope I will no longer be called upon to account for matters that are now properly under the control of this Government. Stop scapegoating and start governing,"
These words, directed at the People's Partnership government and its leader, concluded the Trinidad & Tobago Express' coverage of the press release issued on Wednesday 8 December 2010 by former Prime Minister, Patrick Manning. Though he was focussing specifically on the astounding fancy footwork surrounding the "discovery" of the spying agency and the subsequent fallout, these words sum up what many of us, including some of us who continue to support the new government, have been feeling.

Patrick Manning's words brought Killer's calypso "Mule and Cobo" hurtling back to my mind. It located itself in the current political situation in T&T and presented itself as a metaphor for the relationship between the PP and the PNM. Under the influence of the song's story, I reworded Mister Manning's statement to the PP to read, "Take your head out of my erse and mind your own!"

Big joke you'll hear, just take it cool
This happen with the cobo and a mule
Big joke you'll hear, just take it cool
This happen with the cobo and a mule
The mule feel tired so he lie down
Cobo think he dead, he fly down on the ground
Hungry like fire, fus he want to eat
Chook he head by the tail to test the meat.
Poor PNM Mule, exhausted after a sound thrashing, decides post May 24, 2010 to take a little rest to catch its breath. Next thing, the Cobo PP is making some bold assumptions and taking live body to make carcass. It decides to swoop down across the aisle to "test the meat." Well, as is the habit of vultures, the Cobo PP must choose a weak spot to begin its feast, and the Good Lord knows PNM Mule is more weak spot than mule. Cobo PP decides to zone in on the anal orifice. Who send it!

PNM Mule: WTA!! Well ask a question nah?

Cobo PP learns immediately that the PNM Mule is very much alive and kicking as it scrambles to its feet and takes off pelting down the street, "Brigadip brigadip, the mule running..."
[Brigadip brigadip, the mule running]
As if he flying with the cobo lock behind
[Brigadip brigadip, the mule running]
As if he flying with the cobo lock behind.
Well both of them now in lacouray. PNM Mule is bolting down the road with Cobo PP's head trapped in a hot, steamy sphincter clench.

According to this song the PNM Mule is defeated but no mention is made of the fate of the unfortunate Cobo PP. All indications are that the Cobo PP will go the way of the PNM Mule, the two having locked themselves irreversibly in mortal combat.

Some of us may already be concluding that it might not be a bad thing if they do put each other out of their miseries. Maybe with the two zombie light blockers removed, something new and improved will finally have a chance to reach for the sky.

If it eventually breaks free from this tailspin, the Cobo PP would have learned one lesson: Never assume that anything is dead until you can actually see grass growing through its rib cage. Don't make any arrogant assumptions about the PNM Mule and its hidden reserves of strength. True, it looks like death warmed over, but you ever hear 'bout playing dead to catch cobo alive?

The more you spend time attacking the PNM Mule and the past, the more it appears that you cannot envision or realise a better future.

Patrick Manning asks an important question, "Is this incompetence, carelessness, indifference or worse?"

All I know without a doubt is that after all that we have endured, the citizens of this country should not be asked to choose from that list which extends the miserable choices being considered here - incompetence or corruption.

PP and PNM, we are watching you both. You can take each other down but we are NOT going down with you. Whenever you try to slip us mediocrity or worse, you will be told in no uncertain terms to scrap it and take it, and yourselves, back to the drawing board. We understand that evolution is iterative and we will be patient and help you if we feel that you are worthy of TRUST. If you haven't realised it by now, TRUST is the crucial element that is missing.

Just have some respect for the people who voted for you. Have some respect for yourselves and the legacy that you will leave behind. Have some respect for our nation.

Cobo PP, do try to extricate your head from the PNM Mule's erse and let us move forward. While it is clearly too late for you to amaze us with an ability to hit the ground running AND sounding like political thoroughbreds, I want to believe with every feather on my body that it is NOT TOO LATE for you to wheel and come again.

Well, I couldn't believe what I seeing
Behind the mule tail the cobo was flying
Friends, look I laugh, I nearly dead
Seeing the cobo and I cannot see the head.

[Brigadip brigadip, the mule running]
As if he flying with the cobo lock behind.
[Brigadip brigadip, the mule running]
As if he flying with the cobo lock behind."

Listen to Leon Roach's rendition of Killer's "Mule And Cobo" courtesy we7.
[Link will open in new window.]


Manning: Incompetence or carelessness?
SIA confusion

By Ria Taitt Political Editor
Trinidad & Tobago Express | Dec 9, 2010

Confusion reigns supreme at the highest levels of the Government which is creating "despair and uncertainty" at home and "growing derision" abroad, former prime minister Patrick Manning has stated.

In a press release issued yesterday, Manning spoke of the "dangerous spectacle" of the Commissioner of Police having to contradict the Prime Minister on the matter of accounting responsibilities of the SIA, with the Prime Minister eventually having to admit she was wrong.

"And all done through blaring headlines in the newspapers," Manning said in a press release issued yesterday.

"What in the world is going on here? Is this how you manage the critical matter of our national security, by generating unnecessary and dangerous tensions between the political directorate and the leadership of this critical arm of the law?" Manning asked.

Manning said it was inconceivable that the Prime Minister, as Chairman of the National Security Council, should not have immediately known who has responsibility for the SIA.

"Is this incompetence, carelessness, indifference or worse? It is disconcerting for the country that the Prime Minister has again had to correct an error. This regular need for our nation's leader to backtrack and apologise cannot generate confidence in the leadership of Trinidad and Tobago. Instead, it is creating despair and uncertainty at home and growing derision abroad," he said.

The former prime minister said the growing tensions between the Prime Minister and the Commissioner of Police arising from the matter of the files as well as from the problem of mounting criminal activity, were alarming. "First, there was the very public upbraiding of Mr Gibbs and the leadership of the Police Service in a much publicised visit to Police Headquarters as part of a carefully orchestrated piece of political theatre. After all, the show of governing must go on," he said.

Manning said Justice Minister Herbert Volney has attempted, "in his wild way", to solve the growing mystery of the missing SIA files by claiming knowledge of their destruction by "two shady Israeli individuals". Manning said Volney also suggested that he (Manning) as former prime minister, knew what happened to the documents.

"Mr Volney will have to eventually clarify his own mystery of Middle-Eastern intervention in matters of national security. However, I wish to make it absolutely clear that I have no such information with which I am credited by the Minister. I have been out of the Office of the Prime Minister for going on seven months, I know nothing of where these files are," he said.

Manning said no one is able to reveal the whereabouts of these files.

"But Mr Ashworth Jack says he saw them and so has a leading journalist. However, the Prime Minister claims categorically that she has never had these files, nor has she ever set eyes on them. Yet she comes to the Parliament revealing information supposedly contained in these files, and holding documents aloft, waving them theatrically to support her claims," he said.

"What is the truth Prime Minister? Did you or did you not ever have these files in your possession? Have you ever seen them? Did you ever read any of them, certainly, for example, the ones that would have contained the names of those individuals whose names you so carelessly called in Parliament? If not, it was scandalously irresponsible of you not to verify the source of the information that you gave to the nation with such fanfare and indignant self-righteousness. Speak the truth to us, Prime Minister. That's only fair," Manning stated.

Manning suggested that CoP Dwayne Gibbs be called upon to shed much needed light on these matters, at least to reassure citizens that the files are secure, safe from mischievous intent on the part of unscrupulous individuals.

"We look forward to hearing from the Commissioner of Police, who, so far, has been speaking clearly and plainly to us, unlike the Prime Minister and many in her Cabinet. The nation should be spared any further shocks on this matter as well as the entertaining allegations of Mr Volney," Manning said.

"Though quite prepared to deal with any mischief directed at me, I hope I will no longer be called upon to account for matters that are now properly under the control of this Government. Stop scapegoating and start governing," he said.
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"Patria est communis omnium parens" - Our native land is the common parent of us all. Keep it beautiful, make it even more so.

Blessed is all of creation
Blessed be my beautiful people
Blessed be the day of our awakening
Blessed is my country
Blessed are her patient hills.

Mweh ka allay!
Guanaguanare

HOUSEKEEPING


Parang Soca Fun - Sharlene Flores

I am in the process of importing into this blog, posts from another blog "Guacara Dreamtime" which I've closed. With my schedule, I cannot maintain more than two blogs. I am keeping the original dates of publication so once they are merged they will only be accessible by their labels of the archives. This blog is now a real salmagundi and navigation may be confusing for the visitor but there is a link on the menu to the music index and I am working slowly on arranging the other posts into themes. Thanks for your patience and for visiting!
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"Patria est communis omnium parens" - Our native land is the common parent of us all. Keep it beautiful, make it even more so.

Blessed is all of creation
Blessed be my beautiful people
Blessed be the day of our awakening
Blessed is my country
Blessed are her patient hills.

Mweh ka allay!
Guanaguanare

WikiRebels – The Documentary [Video]



After a while the original video above will not be available so I am including below one of the copies which have been posted on YouTube. This copy below was uploaded by zerwas2ky

I urge everyone to take the time to view this documentary so that no one has to be disadvantaged by the careless accounts or the skewed information being supplied by the media and certain states' agents.

WikiRebels - The Documentary (1/4)



WikiRebels - The Documentary (2/4)




WikiRebels - The Documentary (3/4)



WikiRebels - The Documentary (4/4)


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"Patria est communis omnium parens" - Our native land is the common parent of us all. Keep it beautiful, make it even more so.

Blessed is all of creation
Blessed be my beautiful people
Blessed be the day of our awakening
Blessed is my country
Blessed are her patient hills.

Mweh ka allay!
Guanaguanare

Citizen Power: Reclaiming Democracy In T&T


...Walking The Talk.

Recently, two new citizen action groups have announced themselves in Trinidad and Tobago. The first is the National Democratic Movement [E-mail: sales@colyp.com] headed by Phillip Edward Alexander. His post of Wednesday 8th December, 2010, titled "Going Forward...(National Democratic Movement)", states:
"Further to many discussions over the course of the last two years and events that have occurred within that time frame, it is fair to assume that the Country is currently politically challenged and starved for new blood and fresh ideas outside of the cultures of greed and exchange.

"The refreshing counterbalance and hope seems to lie in the vast amount of bright people capable of bringing real change and willing to make themselves available in service of the nation, and it is from this we find hope in the possibility of a better tomorrow.

"We believe that perhaps it may be time to look at a new dispensation; an organization formed, not in reaction to the ULF/UNC and the PNM, but something new, built on a vision of a better Trinidad & Tobago, a group dedicated to the concept of Country First and mindful of the legacy we are leaving for our children and the future generations.

"The idea is to meet and discuss how exactly do we go forward.

"Ideally we would form ourselves into a structured committee with a mandate to identify which would be the better road to take - either as a lobby/pressure group with objectives and plans to encourage Government compliance, or evolve into a formal Political Party and create our own Contract with Trinidad & Tobago.

"Either way, we would need to create constituency groups to identify and manage constituency issues, potential candidates and campaigns, create an organizational structure, write policy documents a framework document for a Party constitution, as well a team to draft the above mentioned contract.

The purpose of this memo is to invite all those who might be interested in this sort of national service and who would like to be a part of something like this to either reply here, post to the wall or email me/us at sales@colyp.com.

"This organization does not intend to be another vehicle for self promotion or an avenue to greed, but rather a group of civic minded individuals who are willing to lend themselves in defense of our beautiful country and in service to create a better day for all.

Phillip Edward Alexander
The National Democratic Movement"
Link
The second group to announce itself is, Fixin' T&T. [Facebook. E-mail: fixintt@gmail.com]
New group moves to ‘fix’ T&T. From the hills of Laventille to halls of Parliament
Geisha Kowlessar
Trinidad and Tobago Guardian | 11 Dec 2010

"Crime and violence, fear and anger, disenchantment and hopelessness. Can T&T be truly “fixed?” Can the Police Service win the war against crime? Can there be an end to drinking and driving? Kirk Waithe, president of the newly-formed organisation Fixin T&T believes that within six months, with effective and continuous strategies, the country could be on its way to becoming a harmonious, peaceful nation. The organisation’s logo, a heart, represents patriotism. Waithe, former president of Arrive Alive which was founded in January 2005, said Fixin T&T, which was launched on Monday, was fast growing in popularity. The idea, Waithe said, germinated about two or three years ago, adding that some of Fixin T&T’s policies were adapted from Arrive Alive.

“We learnt a lot in Arrive Alive about many others things that require urgent attention,” he said. “Even for Arrive Alive’s objectives to be achieved there are many other issues that need to be urgently addressed—like our administration of justice. “Moving on to Fixin T&T and leaving Arrive Alive afforded us the opportunity to address other critical issues that would positively impact on the issues of Arrive Alive as well.” Waithe said Fixin T&T stood on four pillars—courage, consistency, commitment and consequence. “The perception is that there is no consequence so that if a person runs a red light—the business person or politician with the stroke of a pen who engages in corrupt activities—they all do it because they believe they would be not caught so they continue,” he said. 

Two fundamental challenges
"According to Waithe, the country faced two basic challenges, both of which were easily surmountable. One, according to Waithe, was lack of law enforcement which led to the perception of lack of consequence. “Which was why most people did the things that they do—from the bandit who uses the pen to the bandit who uses the gun,” he said. The second Waithe identified was illiteracy. “We’re too rich to be so poor...Many of our issues are symptomatic of poor countries, poor economies,” he said. “Successive governments have buried their heads in the sand with respect to our illiteracy level and we need to make sure illiteracy is part of the legislative agenda in the next Parliamentary session.” He described Fixin T&T as much more than a “think tank, ” but rather “an implementation tank.”

"Swift justice and consequence
Law enforcement, Waithe said, required three key components; knowledge that wrongdoers would be caught, understanding that once caught there would be swift justice and meaningful consequence.
“When we have those three things we start addressing the issue of crime and lawlessness,” he said. “We need leaders with courage to commit to go after the bandits from the hills of Laventille to the hills of Goodwood Park, from Beetham Gardens to the halls of Parliament.” He added that it must be understood that the law was applicable to all and would be enforced without fear of favour.
Why would Fixin T&T work? Waithe said what people chose to accept was much more important than what they demanded. “We have been demanding for a long time safety and security, a proper health and education system but what we choose to accept that ultimately defines us as a country,” he said.

"He said it was only when people decided to accept something different then they would end up in a different place with a different result. “So we citizens must understand that it could be fixed and that T&T is capable of creating a society for the world to model...That’s the basis of Fixin T&T’s concept,” Waithe said.
And by simply deciding to choose something different was the only way that it could be achieved, he added. “Part of our strategy is to get citizens in actively participating in our democracy and in taking our country forward,” Waithe added.

"Fixin T&T’s measures
Immediate measure Waithe said was “getting the law enforcement right.” Saying that safety and security were the first job of every leader, Waithe added that human resource was a country’s most valuable asset. He said this must be recognised because without safety and security there could be no stability and without stability no real growth could be achieved. “T&T has been in a collision and is in the emergency room and is incapacitated...We first have to stabilise T&T so that we can then focus on specific aliments like illiteracy,” Waithe said. Taking full control of the nation’s roads, he suggested would not only lead to the creation of a more stable society but it would also reduce crime and road carnage.“Everything has to pass on our roads...We have a water ferry but even to get to that you have to pass on the roads,” he said.

“We can take control of our roads and cause the public minimal inconvenience and in so doing we bring criminals to their knees...we can get the guns and bandits off the streets.” Saying that the state of the Police Service was no fault of the lawmen, Waithe said blame should be placed instead on the general public. “Because as citizens we were part in allowing the politicians generally to allow the service to degenerate to the state that it is in right now,” he said. “A lot of government policy dictates how the Police Service and other independent institutions operate.” He added that motivation and morale played critical roles, saying it was impossible to achieve effective and efficient law enforcement policies with a demotivated and demoralised law enforcement agency. “The conditions under which the police work are pathetic at best,” Waithe said.

"Two Tuesday’s ago, members of Fixin T&T met with Finance Minister Winston Dookeran and submitted the following recommendations:

• Immediately revise the compensation package of the Police Service.
• Immediately commence a needs assessment on the working conditions and resources of the Police Service.

“Safety and security is an investment,” Waithe said. “When we manage the roads correctly crime will not only decrease, but the travel advisories will also come off the international Web sites and more people will start coming in the country. “It will lead to an entire domino effect where businesspeople will open at later hours because they feel safe, so more revenue will be generated and the economy stimulated.” He said it was also suggested that independent institutions become “strong and truly independent.” “Our politicians have created independent institutions in name only,” he added.

"Recruitment of officers
At the end of January 2011, Waithe said he hoped to create a bank of 1,000 volunteers. “We feel what T&T requires of its citizens more than anything else is the investment of time,” he said. “These people would invest five hours of their time per month whether it’s teaching someone to read and write, filing something in the judiciary so the system could become more efficient or helping the police with IT.”
Based solely on this article, since I had no prior knowledge of this group's existence or history, I heartily applauded their intention to address our problems including those caused by a lack of consequences for wrong actions [echoing Afra Raymond's comments in this interview and excerpted here], weak law enforcement, tardy justice and illiteracy.

Those who know me will understand why I almost flipped over my keyboard as I stood repeatedly to applaud:
“We need leaders with courage to commit to go after the bandits from the hills of Laventille to the hills of Goodwood Park, from Beetham Gardens to the halls of Parliament.”
“Part of our strategy is to get citizens in actively participating in our democracy and in taking our country forward,”
He added that motivation and morale played critical roles, saying it was impossible to achieve effective and efficient law enforcement policies with a demotivated and demoralised law enforcement agency. “The conditions under which the police work are pathetic at best,” Waithe said.

"Two Tuesday’s ago, members of Fixin T&T met with Finance Minister Winston Dookeran and submitted the following recommendations:

• Immediately revise the compensation package of the Police Service.
• Immediately commence a needs assessment on the working conditions and resources of the Police Service.
I was particularly interested in this and I look forward to learning more:
"Taking full control of the nation’s roads, he suggested would not only lead to the creation of a more stable society but it would also reduce crime and road carnage.“Everything has to pass on our roads...We have a water ferry but even to get to that you have to pass on the roads,”"
Governments come and governments go but the PEOPLE ARE FOREVER. If we are not in charge, we will never really be able to call this land OUR home.
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"Patria est communis omnium parens" - Our native land is the common parent of us all. Keep it beautiful, make it even more so.

Blessed is all of creation
Blessed be my beautiful people
Blessed be the day of our awakening
Blessed is my country
Blessed are her patient hills.

Mweh ka allay!
Guanaguanare