Message to Barbadians

The climate developing countries have to manage affairs of state appears to be very challenging at this time. Barbados the former colony can no longer expect to hide or be protected by England. There was a time we benefited from preferential trade treatment which seemed fair in a dog eat dog world where the ‘strongest’ always has the best chance to navigate challenges.

In a post 54th independence period sensible Barbadians are forced to reflect and to ask – where do we go from here?

Some debate whether the decline of the Barbados economy (and society) started in the 70s, what is for certain is that the decline accelerated after the 2008 global recession. The structure of our economy with an over reliance on services made us extremely vulnerable to significant slowdown in the world economy. Unfortunately we have been unable to patch the vulnerability which has been exposed again by the Covid 19 pandemic.

Reading many comments on BU and listening to commentary elsewhere, it has become painfully obvious despite the dark challenges facing Barbados there are unrealistic expectations the leadership of the country has not address. Barbadians for many years have enjoyed a reasonable standard of living supported by deficit financing in the post Barrow period. There is nothing wrong with spending more than you earn but it is a practice which cannot be sustained. Successive governments in the last four decades have borrowed heavily to pursue national budget objects. We can continue to quibble about who to blame and see where that get us.

The blogmaster is palpably aware from walking among Barbadians on a daily basis that many are suffering from a form of ‘Alice in Wonderland Syndrome’. At a household level commonsense would dictate that supporting a lifestyle of spending more than one earns will lead eventually to a problem. Why do Barbadians expect a different outcome if successive governments continue to engage in reckless financial management? We have spent billions on education, should citizens possess the awareness to translate it to a strident lobby against the establishment to ensure realistic policy decisions are implemented? What about other key stakeholders in civil society like media houses/practitioners and NGO groups?

In the 54 Not Out blog there is a cursory discussion about local media. We have a David Ellis who has been the standout media person in Barbados over the years but a single journalist will not do it. Also we do not have the columnists of the past who provoked deep thought in the population the likes of Oliver Jackman, Gladstone Holder, Leonard Shorey to name only three. Active NGO groups are important as well because interest can be more forcefully represented in numbers. We are at a place in Barbados all problems must be solved by the government. To move forward we must implement a fit for purpose governance model. The reactionary approach to managing our affairs will not deliver meaningful long term results. We fail to plan, we plan to fail.

This morning as the blogmaster sips from a cup of peppermint tea alone with his thoughts, it is clear the country is suffering from a ‘fatigue’, especially wrought by the post 2008 period. This was compounded by a severe policy prescription that has decimated the hopes and dreams of the middleclass forced to witness a manhandling of nest eggs in the most unprecedented way. Finally came Covid 19.

The unprecedented times in which we live demands a degree of planning and collaboration between stakeholders in civil society never envisaged. The blogmaster is unable to reconcile conversations emanating from the mouths of key actors given what the national imperatives should be. Propping up a lifestyle fuelled by conspicuous consumption must be addressed. Calibrating our educations system to produce citizens who can compete to support themselves. Dismantling sub cultures and replace with initiatives to nurture national pride. The forgoing should positively impact crime. Last but not least the environment. We have to care about the space in which we have to exist.

No more tea…

Discuss for 15 marks.

267 thoughts on “Message to Barbadians

  1. @Artax
    here, I believe, is the relevant quote from the article posted by @David above
    “Caddle said that agreement needed to be reached where it was understood that integrity legislation was not just for Government, but extended to the private sector where they too would be subjected to the same sanctions as public officials.”(quote)
    You already know that is tantamount to an extra 50 pages and a 2 year delay. Sounds sweet, but……

  2. @ David December 5, 2020 5:44 AM
    “A promise that Integrity in Public Life Bill is coming.”

    Caddle said that agreement needed to be reached where it was understood that integrity legislation was not just for Government, but extended to the private sector where they too would be subjected to the same sanctions as public officials. (Unquote).

    Just another load of diversionary political bullshit!

    There are already a wide range of laws (including the Companies Act) to govern the behaviour of the private sector.

    The ‘challenge’ for Barbados is NOT the need for more laws but the application and enforcement of the existing laws without fear or favour; that is, ‘Fairly’.

    If the law enforcement agencies cannot deal with the large number of uninsured vehicles (including the large gang of motor bike bandits) on the 2X3 country’s roads how on earth can they be expected to enforce laws to ‘police’ white collar ‘colluding’ criminals both in the public and private sectors?

  3. “There are already a wide range of laws (including the Companies Act) to govern the behaviour of the private sector.”

    they are always telling the public lies complete with misdirection….but I didn’t SEE NOT one minority racist or crook defending Donville, bet ya he can’t call up any of them either, not now and not in the future, although he made it his priority to put them before the people who elected him…they have no time for losers who is also black, but frauds will never learn that….even if they see it themselves in letters as tall as the empire state building.

  4. I do not engage in the white/Indian conversation for a simple reason.

    It may be simplistic thinking on my part but I believe that with blacks being the vast majority and with political power for over 50 years, these inequalities continue to exist because of our failing of our black political leadership. It is not the white/Indian fault that we are unable to make progress, it is the fault of the two sets of jokers that we elect every five years.

    Their laws and policies are not meant to liberate blacks and tend to enriched others We continue to pretend to be a two party state, whilst others groups stop pretending to have that binary split; Mark Malone and company thrives in B or D.

    Keep this in mind.. It takes effort to keep a man down; unrestrained he can change his position; tied down his actions are limited.

    Free your minds and free yourselves

  5. It is not my intention to throw shade to the blogmaster. I am glad that he is still a believer
    Let me throw out a few phrases as we have seen this promise repeated over and over

    ” A promise is comfort to a fool”
    “Fool me once shame on you, fool me twice shame on me”
    “The proof of the pudding is in the eating

    Let torture a phrase
    “Insanity is hearing the same lie over and over and believing it”

    A word to the wise is sufficient


    At some stage, (I hope) all of us are passionate lovers whispering sweet nothings into the ears of our partners.

    This woman has been repeating this speech like 20 years now. Sisyphus was more productive

    Excerpts from BT
    “The BBA welcomes recent comments by the Honourable Attorney General to the effect that legislation is coming to deal more effectively with attorneys-at-law who misappropriate clients’ funds. For many years, the BBA has advocated for a more efficient and robust disciplinary regime.

    “The new legislation is not only timely but overdue. It is possible that recent cases have been the catalyst to bring the issue to the fore once again,” Smith-Millar said.

    She recalled that in 2016 the BBA submitted feedback on a wide range of proposed changes to the Legal Profession Act, but noted that, “nothing came of that draft legislation”.

    She said that draft and the recommendations had again been submitted to the Attorney General and the new Chief Justice Patterson Cheltenham for further consideration.
    If you are going to tell me what her powers are or what she can or cannot do, then you missed the point. She has been a longtime player in the charade for years.

  7. Changes are coming. The people are becoming increasingly demanding. But we have some work to do on ourselves to keep it going to the end. Otherwise we will revert to status quo when the waters calm ever so slightly. We must not stop until the job is done!

    Onward and upwards, Barbados!

  8. “Keep this in mind.. It takes effort to keep a man down; unrestrained he can change his position; tied down his actions are limited. Free your minds and free yourselves.”

    Should be recommended as an additional BU motto.

  9. Whenever I hear of an Integrity Bill the title of the Supremes hit “you keep me hanging on” comes to mind. In the fall of 2007 David Thompson made a speech to a group of Bajans assembled at a hotel in Mississauga, Ontario that if the DLP was elected his Gov’t would introduce a Bill under the heading “Integrity in Public life” within six months of being elected. This was music to the ears of those who had assembled as many of them were being bombarded by tales of profligacy by members of the then BLP Gov’t.

    I don’t have to detail what has transpired since then and in 2020 and some of us are still hanging on and hanging in but we are resilient lot and sometime come hell/ highwater/pandemic or Republic we will agitate for an Integrity Bill.

  10. The cheap laugh brigade reporting for duty
    “We drafted an integrity bill, but somebody stole the copy”
    “Did you say integrity? I heard thievery?”
    “Speaker did you say integrity? I heard get the tea”
    “Did you say integrity? I heard, it is gritty”

    I think my brain just shut down and is spewing random nonsense. Will try to reboot.

  11. @ Theo at 12 :55 PM

    Welcome to the club. My brain has been overwhelmed by the abundance of outpourings coming from normally sharp and entertaining commenters. I believe it has to do with COVID-19 lock downs and the consequential effects on our sense of what is important.

  12. SOEs suffer big loss in six months
    By Shawn Cumberbatch
    Government’s reform of state-owned enterprises (SOEs) has hit a major COVID-19 pandemic snag.
    One year after earning a collective $60.95 million profit halfway through Government’s financial year, the tables have turned for 33 commercial and non-commercial SOEs being fixed under the Barbados Economic Recovery and Transformation (BERT) programme.
    They suffered a $4.9 million loss in the same six-month period ended September 30 this year.
    The problems were compounded by the fact that while over the period the statutory entities cut spending, including $23.73 million less for wages and salaries, their revenue simultaneously fell by $118.9 million.
    Based on a 34-page Mid-Year Review Report April 2020 to September 2020 released by the Ministry of Finance, the financial situation at SOEs would have been worse were it not for $132.86 million in subventions from Government. Subventions were reduced by $41.19 million up to the end of September.
    Faced with what it called a generally “poor” performance by SOEs in the first half of the financial year, the Mia Amor Mottley administration has signalled to these organisations that they have to improve, including reducing arrears owed to suppliers, generating more income and cutting wastage.
    Reviewed performance
    The report, which Minister in the Ministry of Finance Ryan Straughn addressed in a Ministerial Statement in the House of Assembly last Tuesday, reviewed the half-year financial performance of 22 commercial SOEs and 11 non-commercial ones.
    “For the six-month period, revenue collected was less than the corresponding period of April to September 2019 due to the curfew/ lockdown of the country because of the COVID-19 pandemic,” the document stated.
    “However, expenditure was not in proportion to the revenue collected and this resulted in the entities .. . reporting a comprehensive net loss.”
    The biggest loss makers were the Queen Elizabeth Hospital (QEH) at $13.52 million, National Housing Corporation (NHC) at $6.37 million, Caves of Barbados by $2.95 million, and the non-commercial Barbados Community College – $1.97 million.
    The profitable SOEs were Barbados Tourism Marketing Inc. (BTMI) $11.43 million, Barbados Agricultural Development and Marketing Corporation – $5.16 million, Barbados Investment and Development Corporation (BIDC) – $4.04 million, Financial Services Commission (FSC) – $2.79 million, and Barbados Water Authority (BWA) – $2.16 million. Of this group, BIDC and FSC are in the non-commercial category.
    The report, stating that total revenue fell from last year’s $449.2 million to $330.3 million in the first six months of Government’s financial year, said it was noteworthy that some of the revenue-raising programmes implemented to wean some SOEs from the public purse were hurt by the pandemic.
    Lack of ridership
    These included the “Transportation Augmented Programme of the Transport Board due to the lack of ridership; the collection of Garbage and Sewage Contribution due to the closure of businesses; the Health Services Levy due to the loss of jobs, and the Airline Travel and Development fee due to the decrease in international travel”.
    SOEs spent $54.61 less but this was negated by the bigger fall in revenue.
    “For the period April to September 2020, the top five spenders were QEH ($102.12 million), BWA ($69.40 million), Sanitation Service Authority ($28.82 million), Transport Board ($20.46 million), and National Conservation Commission ($17.67 million).
    Government attributed part of the expenditure reduction to SOE operations being negatively impacted by COVID-19, and said the QEH increased spending related mainly to getting the health sector ready for the pandemic.
    Regarding arrears, entities owing the most at the end of September were the BTMI ($10.35 million), Transport Board ($8.31 million), BWA ($6.07 million), NHC ($3.72 million) and QEH ($3.13 million).
    The report added that “although there has been some improvement in the financial reporting of the entities, a greater effort is required if proper oversight is to be achieved”.

  13. Spouge economics and innovative thinking

    You know how I feel about economics in the Caribbean today right? I feel that it is too narrowly focused on numbers, too textbook and formulaic in approach, lacking social, cultural and historical context in analysis and prescriptions and that our economists are prone to speaking in economese and jargon which very few people can understand, but may pretend to in order to appear smart.
    Readers could reasonably assume that I feel all dem so just so fuh so.
    But as with most things, the truth is probably more complex.
    In recent times, colleagues have introduced me to the work of some prominent Caribbean economists of the past whose thought is so contrary to what I currently perceive as Caribbean economics that it makes me wonder: “What on God’s good Bim happened?.”
    Economists like Lloyd Best and George Beckford presented perspectives so creative, innovative and Caribbean that reading them gives me the same feeling I get listening to spouge.
    You ever see Bajans react to spouge? I doan mean react to the mention of spouge, because, mention spouge to many a Bajan and you will either get a blank stare or a loud stupes. I mean how dey does react when a DJ or a live band hit dem wid de spouge unexpectedly, when their defences are down. It is a wonder to behold.
    Something is light up in dem like if the DJ had de code to the microchip in dey brain. Try it. Ask a person how they feel about spouge and then without warning pelt on “ You’re No Good” by Jackie Opel or “ Drink Milk” by the Draytons Two and see what happens. When you listen to spouge you can’t help but wonder: “What happened?”
    The same way we lef’ out good homemade music to import sounds, it often seems to me like we abandoned innovative, indigenous economic thinking to adopt wholesale, economic theory from elsewhere. In all fairness to our economists, this trend is by no means unique to that discipline.
    We do it across the board, from music, to economics, to food, to architecture, the idea seems to be that foreign is better. But we focus here on economists because of the central and leading role that profession and discipline has taken in the development of the region.
    It is possible that it is not our economists who are narrowly fixated on numbers and jargon, and uninterested in nuance and context.
    It could be that that kind of work just doesn’t interest our journalists enough and so rarely makes it into mainstream media. It is possible that I have characterised our economists unfairly and erroneously. Enter Marla Dukharan as exhibit A.
    In a video that has been making the rounds on social media, Economist Dukharan lays out in clear and plain language how the European Union’s (EU) practice of blacklisting countries is biased and unfairly targets smaller and more vulnerable nations, particularly former European colonies. Dukharan characterises the EU’s behaviour as “institutionalised discrimination and economic warfare.” She also calls out the “Europhiles” among us who would make excuses for the EU.
    Wunna know how I feel already.
    The war against the non-western world which began in 1492 when Columbus sailed the ocean blue has never stopped. The global game is and always has been rigged. The Europhiles among us would like us to believe that all our woes are of are own making. That if only we were smarter and more industrious we would easily close the gaps that exist. They suggest we leave Nelson’s statue on high, continue to swear allegiance to the queen, forget about history altogether and just be better.
    Dukharan’s video, available on her YouTube page, suggests that it’s not so simple.
    Yes, we can definitely be better.
    But that may not mean what the Europhiles and Americanised among us think it does. As I’ve said before and Dukharan also indicates, seeking to punch above your weight is not a sustainable strategy. But push back we must.

    Adrian Green is a communications specialist. Email: Adriangreen14

  14. Important office of Chief Justice
    By Ezra Alleyne
    Within the past month there have been some headlines focusing on the office of Chief Justice. That this office and news relating thereto attracts the attention of Barbadians and journalists, presents a teachable moment on an important constitutional position.
    The office of Chief Justice is critically important in any genuine democracy. The holder of the office “heads up” (a vulgar expression), the judicial power which is one of the three great powers of the State. People often speak of the power prime ministers exercise. Chief Justices and their judges also exercise awesome state powers.
    Prime ministers exercise what is called the executive power.
    The monarchs formerly exercised this power in real terms, at a moment in history when the office of prime minister had not been established.
    So, the current constitutional position is that the executive power resides as a matter of law within the Head of State, and so, it is strictly speaking, Her Majesty’s Government or to use the jargon of the Throne Speech, “my Government”.
    Made it clear
    And now prime ministers “run things” because one momentous day, in ancient times, the people finally made it clear to monarchs that their sell-by date for the exercise of their “off with his head” dictatorial powers had passed.
    The ensuing political settlement allowed the monarch to keep his constitutional position but henceforth kings and queens would cede the exercise of the major powers by convention to the real masters, who were and are voters and their elected representatives.
    The elected members eventually exercised the right to choose their leader from among them and to have a Cabinet chosen from among them by their leader.
    Thus the executive power became principally exercised by the Prime Minister and the legislative power became exercisable by the elected Parliament of which the prime minister was a member.
    There was some overlap of the legislature and the executive.
    The king’s wings had been well and truly clipped. But hold on, we have to connect with all this to the judges.
    At the same time, the judges who in practice exercised the judicial power, would continue to be appointed in theory by the monarch, but in reality by the prime minister.
    But, and here is the key point, of the three powers the judicial power would henceforth stand alone.
    There would be no overlap with either the legislative power or the executive power.
    The judicial power would be exercised independently of the other two powers.
    Hence, judicial independence of the operators of the two other powers of the state became an immutable principle of what is known as the separation of Powers. The rule of the law would replace the dictatorial judgment of the monarch.
    That is still the position today. Now, and this is an important situation, The Constitution is declared to be the supreme law, and Sir Patterson Cheltenham and his fellow judges have the high duty and task of interpreting The Constitution and what it means whenever a subsequent law is passed by the legislature at the behest of the Executive.
    Any citizen may complain that such a subsequent law infringes that citizen’s rights.
    It is an important safeguard against the modern-day kings overreaching themselves.
    But history had proved that judicial independence has to be nailed down and supported by some heavyweight “hurricane shutter” doctrines, the major one being that a judge can only be removed from office by a complex procedure.
    Protects them
    The Constitution protects them. The removal procedure takes away the capacity to fire a judge from the hands of any prime minister or Cabinet in exercise of the executive power This is important because a year ago in Britain much top floor criticism was heaped upon the heads of the judges who ruled against Boris Johnson’s prorogation of Parliament.
    Unpopular though principled decisions of the courts have provided the justification in times past for ancient kings to remove judges.
    Modern democratic constitutions know better.
    They insulate the judges from this kind of outdated and capricious dictatorial action.
    Our Constitution effectively provides for the security of tenure of our judges.
    Finally, Sir Patterson spoke sensitively on his observing the social history in practice of this formerly agricultural society, as a boy going to The Lodge School. His generation, he said, must never forget they owe their current social well-being to the hard work of those plantation workers. I find this a strikingly profound observation: The law is better interpreted and applied when the courts at all levels remain acutely conscious of the social milieu in which the law laid down in their judgments has to be applied.
    How the law is interpreted deeply affects the social fabric of our society.
    It is after all the habitual obedience and respect for the law that provides the foundation for the peace, order and good governance of the society.

    Ezra Alleyne is an attorney at law and former Deputy Speaker of the House of Assembly.

  15. I have enormous respect for Ezra Alleyne, but it looks as if he has not looked at the theory of constitutional government since his university days in the 1960s.
    The Head of State (the Queen or her representative) does not head up the Executive; the Executive is head up by the Cabinet, in a parliamentary democracy.
    The Head of State’s functions are ceremonial, even in the signing off of Bills to turn them in to Acts. S/he is the embodiment of what we call the State, that mysterious institution that has no real existence, apart from the sophistication of how powers are exercised.
    It is the State (or Crown) which prosecutes a wrongdoer; it is the State (or Crown) which owns property. In shot, think of the idea of the State in much the same way we think of a person having a mind.
    Where in the body is the mind? Yet we talk about it with such confidence that it appears as if we can magic it in to existence. To put too much emphasis on the Queen’s Speech is to misunderstand both the speech and who delivers it.
    When the Head of State says ‘my government’, what s/he is saying is that the government; the Head of State is only the echo of what is being proposed. It has not a single jot on the government’s programme.
    It is ceremonial, not influential, not of any legal significance. It is like wearing black and white to a funeral; if you do not the dead can still be buried. It is ceremony, like soldiers marching up and down in fancy uniforms, and shouting at each other.
    I can understand why he could have such a mistaken view of our constitutional arrangement, since a strong prime minister can usurp the powers of parliament and of the Head of State.
    We have seen that recently with Mottley, both at Owen Arthur’s funeral – which officially was a State Funeral, therefore should have been head by the Governor General – and the Independence Day, a state occasion. We have also seen the abuse of the Governor General during the Queen’s Speech with 52 pages or rambling, rhetorical stuff that could have been delivered in at most 45 minutes, rather than the near three hours it took.
    Mottley gets away with this nonsense because the grand figures of Barbados politics would not whisper in her ears when she is misbehaving.
    Then he gets reality mixed up with constitutionality. If you have a 30/0 (29/1) legislature, a Cabinet that is subservient to the prime minister, a Chief Justice appointed by the Prime Minister, then we have a dictatorship? Or do we?
    Should not judicial appointment s be by an independent Judicial Appointments Committee? How can there be a rule of law independent to dictatorial rule when the laws are made by the prime ministerially-controlled Legislature and Executive, the judiciary is headed up by a Chief Justice appointed by the prime minister, and with a overwhelming majority in parliament, the prime minister can amend the constitution at a whim?
    Then he comes in with some waffle about the constitution effectively guaranteeing security of tenure of judges. Plse explain that in plain English.
    Are Barbadian judge, like those of the US Supreme Court, guaranteed jobs for life, or like the UK Supreme Court, their jobs are guaranteed until thy reach a retirement age? Which is it? What happened to the previous Chief Justice? Did the BLP come to power determined to remove the DLP appointed Chief Justice?
    As a leading and long-standing advocate, I am not surprised that Mr Alleyne is giving a greater importance to the doctrine of precedence than most legal theorists will. Judges interpret law, not make it.
    There is a set procedure for understanding the intentions of parliament in law making. You go first to the social problems that necessitated the call for a new law; then you go to the discussion document issued by parliament; then the responses; then to the Bill, the parliamentary debate, then the final Act.
    If the court’s interpretation of the background to the legislation does not accord with that development, then there is a need for an amended Act.
    Mr Alleyne’s weekly pieces are useful in that they force people to look closely at constitutionalism, rather than the theatre of the courts. But I hope he is not influencing young minds.

  16. My soul brother, Adrian Greene hits the spot again! Just like drinking milk with the Draytons Two.

    And he is right about that spouge reaction. Never ceases to lift my spirits. First comes the broad smile as I recognise the opening bars, then comes the singing at the top of my lungs. It speaks to my Bajan soul. And I wonder what happened? How did we let that gem slip through our fingers?

    And my soul cries out –


    • @Donna

      It is better if locals have been encultrated to believe it is so. This is the kernel of the issue we have to unpack to move forward.

  17. As usual Ezra Alleyne makes an in depth comment on recent events in our blessed country. He uses his column as an educative tool. Some of us commenters can learn a thing or two about exposition. We have a tendency in public conversations to criticize without understanding the social and political reasons for the establishment of state structures.

  18. Donna December 5, 2020 8:15 AM

    William Skinner,

    “I, being a fanatical “come yuh” convert and one who lives ignorant and enslaved on the 2×3 barren rock, bereft of hope and in need of urgent counselling to help me to distinguish my ass from my elbow, humbly bow before all overseas Bajans whose vastly superior brains enabled them to escape from a terrible fate in Barbados living among the savages to an enlightened and perfect life among the white people.“ (Quote)
    @ Donna
    I respectfully think you have made a mistake by sending such a post addressed to me. I have never referred to Barbados as a 2×3 anything. I don’t know why you would direct anything like that to me. I have written nothing to you or anybody else that deserves such a response. This is at least a month or more that I have not made any comments regarding overseas or fellow Barbadians living at home.
    I don’t indulge in such phrases as you have stated above.

    PS .The very last post that I addressed to you was why I use the word “ Peace” at the end of my posts. And that was only by way explanation.

  19. New Spouge songs ahould be created and arrangerd by our best musicians.

    There has not been enough done to promote this genre of Bajan music.

    This instrumental version of Spouge is top class.

  20. William…ignore the ignoramuses who weren’t even born in Barbados and could never be so disrespectful to any white or other who makes suggestions or have opinions relating to the upliftment of the people for economic and social progress in the UK, they would probably deport her ass just for her impertinence…just speak to people who live in UK and they will tell you.

  21. William…we have been trying for years before these jokers showed up and think they can change a narrative when many of us have receipts to pull out about what we’re saying, that we can show and don’t have to talk about ..”beliefs” not when we got proof in black and white.

    i came and found people like u on this blog and outside of the banter etc, never took it upon myself to tell anyone living in the diaspora or on the island that they should not contribute with an opinion, idea or radical information that is needed right now, we might dispute this or that, but that’s a normal part of arriving at some semblance of a solution….but these, when they don’t want to hear intelligent discourse they believe they can bully people to shut up….and most times don’t know what the hell they’re talking about.

    on another note, things are moving forward as they should, hope you have been checking out other platforms..

  22. on another note, things are moving forward as they should, hope you have been checking out … platforms..

  23. William Skinner,

    No, you did not make those comments. But others have. Just showing it to you.

    As for Wonder Woman, I would have her know that I am a third generation rebel (my guess is longer than that). My grandfather stopped the school from TRYING to beat my mother into singing God Save the Queen in the 1940s. She was not even 10 years old. My mother went to England in 1962 as an eighteen year old girl and gave the white man as good as she got and even better. Nuff smart lip and on one occasion she bust a white patient’s ass for spitting on her. I have told that story, one of the many I could tell on BU.

    At Q.C. we had many white teachers. A Mrs. Gilmore was mentioned here just last week. I think she was probably the same one who pulled my folded arms from across my chest on the way to assembly when I still young enough to be wearing a tunic. My response was to look into her eyes and put them right back up. The school rules did not permit her to put her hands on me. She got the message and used her voice instead. Then I complied in accordance with the rules. And this was after I turned my back on the queen’s motorcade in 1976. My friends and I also took over the white retreat by the tennis courts. Labelled the benches “South Africa”. Started a war of words after watching Roots. We did all that and escaped without punishment. Nobody wanted to deal with us. They knew we could represent ourselves and they would be exposed. But we earned a reputation at Q.C. When the overseer type Colleen Winter-Brathwaite took over from Elsie she said she had been warned about us and she gave us the name – The Rabble Rousers.
    Do you know what audacity it took to behave like that at Q.C. in the 70s? I have been confronting racist whites and the system since childhood.

    I also belonged to a political group with some serious militants at the age of eighteen. Some of them were Marxists. The young lady who brought me aboard is Bobby Clarke’s niece. I still have her Angela Davis books on my shelf.

    So piss off, you stupid woman! My grandfather, my mother and I have been taking a stand against the stuff you are now jumping up and down about since the 1940s.

    We lived it! Never bowed! Never will!

    I will leave you with another of my mother’s choice titbits.

    Once another white patient asked what the hell she was doing in England. My mother, ever quick of tongue, had the perfect reply –

    “I have come to practise on you as a guinea pig so I can go back home and take care of my people properly.”

    And that is precisely what she did! She gave them her all and sometimes brought them home. After retirement she took care of anyone in the neighbourhood who asked. Dressing wounds, putting in drops, bathing some and literally pulling the shit out of an old neighbour’s ass who suffered with terrible constipation.


    And so I devoted all my time for more than a decade to community work even mentoring at the Juvenile facility and following up after release to the point of standing up to the police at Central police station for unfairing my mentee.
    I left them speechless. I sat in my car after dark for half an hour, with only a pregnant woman as company, in The Orleans where shooting deaths occurred even this year just to prevent them from finding him hiding out and giving him a beating. I took him in as he said that is the only way he was going. He TRUSTED ME to protect him. And I did. Little, petite me! Bloody fearless when necessary! Or when angry! Just as mad as my mad ass mother!

    Not stand up to white people shit. I bought a car from Simpson Motors. They NEVER kept the parts in stock. Wanted me to wait for six weeks or have it sourced and pay more than twice the amount. One night, carless, I walked to Oistins alone. I walk or drive when I am angry. Even if it is midnight on a lonely road. But even though it was only eight, I got attacked by a would be rapist. Tripped him up and he ended up on the ground with me sitting on him. I jumped up still holding a grocery bag in each hand. Refused to run. I walked and HE got up and ran.

    Went into Simpson Motors next morning and ripped hell. White manager was summoned from upstairs. Tore into him too. Told him I would tell everybody I knew not to buy a car from Simpson’s. He apologised profusely and repeatedly. Never had to wait for a part after that.

    And you dare to tell me to do something useful with my nuisance life and that I am a coward who would not stand up to white people?

    You stupid, stupid woman!

    You may post a lot and that can also be useful. I act without even thinking. That’s why I don’t think of myself as an activist. To me, I am just living a normal life.

    Because, having grown up the lone black in a white neighbourhood from six weeks old ( 🙄) a white person is no big deal!

  24. Boy, I gotta go! The blood is pounding in my head. I can hear it in my ears! That stupid bitch got me so damn angry. She is not worth it.

    Bloody stupid bitch!

  25. I don’t need any biography from idiots, am not going to read it, waste of energy, I tend to conserve mine….hope the blood does more than pound.

  26. @ Mr. Hal Austin,

    You said, and de ole man quotes

    “…I can understand why he (Ezra Alleyne the man whom yo may remember as one of the earliest BLP lawyers debarred in the 70’s?) could have such a mistaken view of our constitutional arrangement, since a strong prime minister can usurp the powers of parliament and of the Head of State.

    We have seen that recently with Mottley, both at Owen Arthur’s funeral – which officially was a State Funeral, therefore should have been head by the Governor General – and the Independence Day, a state occasion.

    We have also seen the abuse of the Governor General during the Queen’s Speech with 52 pages or rambling, rhetorical stuff that could have been delivered in at most 45 minutes, rather than the near three hours it took.”

    Today you have spoken a gem of truth that will go missing in the melee that is ensuing around you.

    Today you have highlighted how this so called luminary Ezra Alleyne IS SINGING FOR HIS SUPPER AT THE ADIPOSE LIPS OF THE DICTATOR MIA MUGABE!

    Today you have deconstructed the literary hog shyte that Ezra Alleyne posted in this submission that should get a blog of its own here on Barbados Underground BUT IT WILL NOT!

    Because these truths you have enunciated though self evident ARE DANGEROUS!

    You broke down every single line of the Alleyne Lie that supports the coming Republic Dictatorship for Life of Mugabe Mottley!

    You have shown how Mugabe Mottley has merged all three powers under her single rule.

    Like her hero Putin

    While stupid bajans looking at Covid-19 vaccines and Nelson Moving and Virtual We Gaddering


  27. Boy, I gotta go! The blood is pounding in my head. I can hear it in my ears! That stupid bitch got me so damn angry. She is not worth it.

    Bloody stupid bitch!








  28. @ Piece
    You said” Today you have spoken a gem of truth that will go missing in the melee that is ensuing around you.” You are correct about @ Hal superbly written article.
    A very impressive piece. I don’t comprehend how anybody can seriously praise the pitiful BLP propganda columns of Ezra Alleyene. Alleyne is now a mere shadow of the promise he showed when he entered politics and the country was impressed with him as a rising star on the political scene.
    The clarification is appreciated. Thanks

  29. @William

    Thanks. I have great appreciation for Ezra, that generation just below John Connell and Calvin Alleyne; and it was enhanced when he started teaching law before returning to Barbados.
    Sometimes he gets it, not so much wrong, but fails to keep up. There are two sides to the law, the theory and the practice. In Barbados we are familiar with the practice: robes, theatre, etc. But we are lacking in discussing the theory. Often we get the two mixed up.
    But for the uninitiated, law and finance are twins; the law of contract, pensions law, regulation, etc. The same with sports/entertainment and the law. Law is a popular second degree in the UK.
    There is also an ignorance of specialist law; if you want to know about welfare law, will you go to a young man or woman in a robe, who came out of college two months ago, or to an experienced social worker?
    If you want to know about industrial relations law will you go to a leading QC who has only done criminal work or to a leading trade union official? A right to appear before a judge and knowledge of the law are two different things.
    But, on BU, even questions of as objective as law and the constitution become party political or personal issues. It is the Bajan Condition.

  30. @ Hal
    I had the opportunity of hearing a young Alleyne speak on his party’s platforms and in Parliament. I remember him driving his superbly kept title Morris Minor, quickly building a reputation as a fine lawyer and future PM. Always smiling articulate and affable . I don’t know the man that has reduced himself to a propaganda machine, using his legal writing skills to basically mislead readers.
    As for those who come on BU positing everything in pure party positions, it looks like the sheer stamina of @Mariposa is getting the better of her opponents ,on the other side , at this time. After all who can defend a PM , who calls workers protests “ spectacles” and tells them to behave properly for “ outsiders”.
    For me there is nothing more relaxing than seeing the political cannibals devour each other. That’s what they do best!

    • @William

      You are being very dramatic. Which prime minister or leader of an enterprise would not appeal for calm at a difficult time for the country or business? Should she have said the opposite? Context man!

      Defend the workers we must but uneasy lies the head that wears a crown.

  31. @David
    I know , what I heard and read what my Prime Minister said. She needs to apologise to the workers.
    You are incapable of defending the working class. I have all your responses to attacks on the corporate class. You have defended them 85% of the time. You have no authority to tell me about context. You only know about that when it comes to the BLP.
    Let me stay emotional. Thank you very much.

    • @William

      The Prime Minister overseas the country, not just the working class. The job of any prime minister is to ensure the environment of the whole country supports all classes. The blogmaster like you can have any opinion he damn well pleases.

  32. (Quote):
    Defend the workers we must but uneasy lies the head that wears a crown.

    That piece of timely advice also applied when a ‘blue(s)’ head wearing a yellow crown (of economic thorns) was served with a letter of ultimatum and over 5,000 marched in Bridgetown headed by a pied piper dressed in the ‘politically colourful’ white.

    The more administrations change the more they do the same crap.

    ‘Those who live in glass houses should not throw stones (even from the shade).’

    Karma can be a bitch (of any colour)!

    • @Miller

      This iOS true and you and others have discussed the tactics of opposition politics compared to when in government.


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