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Havana Domestic Radio and Television Service in Spanish 2244 GMT 24 July

(Live Fidel Castro speech from the Santa Clara on the occasion of the
ceremonies for the presentation of awards to emulation-winning canecutters)

(Text) Invited guests, comrade workers: Coming from every corner of our
country, the men and women who most distinguished themselves in the great
economic battle which the past harvest represented are gathered here today.
They come to receive the homage and recognition of all the people and,
moreover, the moral prizes, which, though not precisely proportionate to
the efforts they have made, are prizes consisting of articles that will
surely be very well received by the workers and, above all, by their
families. (applause)

In the search for the ways to the construction of socialism and communism,
there is much debate about what are the best methods, the most practical
measures that will lead man toward those goals. Doubtlessly, one cannot
explain within a few minutes or on an occasion such as this, the entire
series of ideas and viewpoints being debated in this matter. It is possible
that much will have to meditated on and analyzed still--above all, the
question of the moral and material stimuli.

For us the prize given the workers is, above all, a matter of honor
(applause), above, all recognition that is much more valuable than the
material prize they are going to receive (applause). That material prize is
an expression of this moral recognition. The people, from their resources,
in addition to the salary earned by each workers, offer them a small
sacrifice made by the nation to express in that way their appreciation and
recognition (applause).

The exact number of arrobas each of them cut is not studied in order to
give to each a prize in proportion to his effort. Instead, within certain
categories, those prizes are awarded on the basis of province, brigade,
individual workers, peasants. Greater stress was placed on the province in
which tens of thousands of workers go to cut sugarcane on a voluntary
basis, that is to say, those who, without the harvest being their job, left
their homes for entire months to make the harvest possible in some areas of
the country that are practically unpopulated.

It is logical that the recognition of the country be stressed there for
those workers. Distinctions were made between professional and voluntary
workers because, naturally, the voluntary workers do not have the
experience nor are they as accustomed to that very difficult work of
cutting sugarcane (applause).

I make this clarification without touching upon the root of this problem,
which we will have to go ion studying and analyzing so as to always select
the best methods with which to push man ahead. These will not be idealistic
methods that conceive of the totality of man as being guided with
discipline by the concept of duty. In real life at present we cannot think
of that, but we will be able to think that way as the new generations of
our country become trained.

Moreover, those ways will not seek to awaken selfishness in man above all,
nor will they be paths that, though not seeking that end, will lead to it.
Those methods will be designed to make man want to conduct himself
properly, thinking that acting correctly will be a reward in itself for him
and not merely a serious moral obligation. (applause).

It would be very idealistic and absurd to want to build socialism--as I
have told some comrades a little facetiously--imagining money running like
mad after man, and it can be said that it would be anti-Marxist to conceive
of man running like a madman after money (applause), because the
capitalists ran like madmen after money. As madmen after money they did
commit all kinds of abuses, all kinds of excesses, and all kinds of crimes
(applause) to accumulate fabulous fortunes and amass millions of pesos. And
you who know what work is and what work is worth have the right, more than
any academician, to understand that by working with your seat and with your
arms, nobody would ever have been able to accumulate millions of pesos
(applause). But they accumulated millions of pesos only by taking away from
the hundreds and thousands of workers a considerable part of the fruit of
their labors.

I feel that our revolutionary, enthusiastic, intelligent and optimistic
people believe in themselves, and we leaders must believe in the country
and in the people (applause). Furthermore, we must know of the great volume
of moral energy and all the wealthy of goodness and generosity that can be
contained in the human heart and do everything that is necessary in order
that the outstanding qualities of man may be developed and everything
necessary may be done so that the selfish feelings of man will vanish.

It is not expected that this can be accomplished with one speech or with a
thousand speeches, nor from one day to the next, nor from one year to the
next. It will be a question of time and much time. But as revolutionaries,
we can never reject the idea of a collectivity made up of men and women of
superior human feelings (applause). Because of this, there is the
tremendous importance of schools, the tremendous importance of educators,
Because of this, thee is the extraordinary effort that the revolution
dedicates to developing educators and resources, for very soon all these
feelings of solidarity, of generosity--all these moral feelings and
feelings of responsibility--must be instilled from the moment that human
beings begin reasoning.

Meanwhile, if it cannot be said that all the men and women think and act
the same, always in a generous and positive way, it is unquestionable
that--although our present generation, our present population lacked
schools and grew up in the midst of that jungle of wolves, which was the
capitalist society,and received such poor examples in these times when the
best man, the hardest workers, the many who sacrificed the most was not
honored; times when the worst man rather than the best man was awarded the
prize, the honors went to the rascals (applause); times when the highest
honors were bestowed on thieves and rich exploiters--many were the sons who
when told by their own parents not to be fools when they had a chance to
steal, did not do so. The rule that you must succeed at all costs
regardless of the price and without any moral scruples, had almost become a

On the other hand, it cannot be denied that during these years of
revolution, the number of men who are outstanding because of their virtues,
their generosity, and their courage, is increasing. They have shown this in
many cases with their zest for work, as was shown in this very sugar
harvest. Each time there is a growing (applause) spirit which seizes the
masses. No one can deny that at least we can count on a large enough
minority of men who will act primarily moved by moral and human reasons.

It would be absurd for us to expect that these men who earn their daily
bread cutting cane make a maximum effort by telling them that they should
do this as a duty without being interested in whether they are going to
earn more or less. This would be idealistic. But we believe that if a man
has a responsibility for something; if a man has been appointed
administrator or chief of a labor front, we have the duty and the right to
demand that that man fulfill his duty in the best possible manner,
regardless of the material remuneration which he receives (applause).

Because to create capitlists is not difficult. It does not require hardly
any work. But the making of communist cadres requires effort. It takes
work. It takes arduous selection. It also requires that those who in one
way or another have anything to do with the selection of these men (Castro
does not complete thought) and it is necessary that the working mass
intervene more and more in these selections (?just) as they have intervened
in the selection of the exemplary youth, where the men of our United
Socialist Revolutionary Party come from (applause). It is necessary that
the selections be right,and never be guided by subjective criteria, never
be guided by friendship or by favoritism, but by objective criteria so that
we can always place--or hope that the day will come when each man selected
to an office be the ideal man--the best among those from whom they could be
chosen for that particular responsibility.

It is becoming easier in Cuba to find those who are the best. I am sure
(applause) that anytime something is discussed in a meeting,the fact of
having been here today among the 5,000 winning canecutters will always be
something which will speak in your favor (applause). It will be something
that will work in your favor when references are requested of a citizen, a
worker, or his merits, his character, his spirit is discussed. This way,
though a sort of mechanism, each time we will be better able to learn,
because during the seven years of revolution there are enough years to have
written already a piece of the history of Cuba (applause).

The work of the men in these seven years, their conduct on all fronts, in
all activities, is the letter of revolutionary recommendation for each
citizen (applause). This way everybody will have the right to write his own
letter of recommendation. Each one will have the opportunity to tell what
he is and what he is worth. We are traveling a long road, out at the same
time an interesting and promising road for our country. Along this road we
will learn much, just like in these seven years all of us have learned
something (applause).

We have also learned something with regard to the prizes, that is to say,
we have learned to appreciate certain facts that influence the
award-winning workers. It must be said that all of them have been
influenced greatly by the truly noble, generous, and humane feelings.

That is to say that they were thinking of their relatives at the time they
selected their prizes. They were thinking of their wives, their mothers,
their children (applause). So we have seen that the individual
prizes--those prizes which only the worker can enjoy--were not the type of
prizes that was of most interest, despite the fact that they were among the
most valuable.

Thus, for example, the trip abroad--despite the fact that there is
practically no one who has never dreamed of traveling and that it is the
most expensive prize--only 80 workers chose that prize, although there were
500 of that type. Almost all of them said: "Well, if I take the trip,
(applause) my family will not receive anything. But if I receive a
refrigerator, everyone in the house will enjoy the refrigerator"
(applause). The same thing happened with regard to the motorcycles and with
the rest of the prizes. Therefore, a problem presented itself: There were
1,000 motorcycles but 1,200-plus wanted motorcycles: for 1,500
refrigerators, 1,700-plus persons applied.

Of course, the idea behind the prizes was that if there were 1,000 of them,
that was all there were, because that was the number of motorcycles planned
for prizes. The comrades found themselves in this dilemma: that there were
far fewer who chose the trip than chose (Castro changes line of
thought--ed.)--among those who had a right, because the ones who earned the
better prizes, had the right to chose a lesser prize, that is, a
first-prize winner could for a second prize. That was the problem.

In any case, we have decided that on this occasion, in view of the
experience, an attempt will be made to obtain the motorcycles needed to
complete the 1,200-plus requested (applause), and the refrigerators needed,
so that now, despite misinterpretations--although everyone knew what was
coming to him--absolutely no one can leave this fraternal and beautiful
gathering in Santa Clara in sadness (applause).

But this shows us what we must do for next year. We should raise the number
of motorcycles to 1,250; that of refrigerators to 1,750; and provide 100
trips abroad with two members of the families (applause)--reduce the number
of trips, but increase the number of travelers. In that way, the bachelor
may take his mother, a sister, someone to accompany him; the married man
may take his wife, a son. In short, the contradiction that presented itself
this year must be overcome in that way.

I gave this example because in everything the following year must be better
than the one before, if we know how to take advantage of the experience.
This was the first time that an emulation of this type was established with
prizes of this type. Naturally, next year there will be a bit more
sugarcane (laughter and applause), but not as much more a there will be in

We are now looking skyward daily to see how the rains are coming along. The
rains are playing an important role. There has been sufficient and good
work, good enough to achieve the 6.5 million mark next year. That is next
year, because it is a long leap from 4.4 to 6.05 million.

Of course, that tremendous stride (Castro chuckles and the crowd laughs and
applauds--ed.) cannot be achieved two years in a row. An effort will have
to be made, particularly in the sugar industry and other sectors that play
a role in the harvest.

A great effort was made this spring in the planting of sugarcane. It was
tremendous, and substantial rain is falling, at least in this province. But
the rains play an important role. We even have a team of planes ready so
that, when that short pause in the rains takes place, we can send those
planes to seed the clouds with dry ice to try to prevent them from passing
without some rain (applause).

In this matter of more or less sugarcane, there are a series of factors.
Even though there was not much rain, with greater quantities of
fertilizers, production would be guaranteed. Production is guaranteed in
the absence of natural resources, when, for example, sufficient quantities
of the necessary fertilizers are available. But our present resources do
not allow us to have at our disposal the amounts of fertilizers that may be

Unfortunately, we are a country that did not have any basic industry--an
underdeveloped nation without practically any production of fertilizers
that have not been mixed with fertilizers that were imported. We had to
import them and it was not always easy to acquire them. Moreover, there
were not the necessary resources available to be able say: "The rain is a
little slow in coming. We are going to spread 100,000 tons of nitrogen to
guarantee such and such."

How is it that we cannot do this? In the future we will be able to do this,
thus acquiring a greater security, just as we will acquire more security in
the degree to which the hydraulic plan is being developed, and we shall not
have to depend on the rain to decide on the day to plant and to fertilize.
In short, a considerable part of our sugarcane land will become independent
of these (?problems) (applause).

And greater economic resources, greater amounts of fertilizer will allow us
to have a reserve of technical resources and to be able to use them when it
is necessary because, if there are three rainfalls in a month or in two
months, much more will be produced from these three rainfalls if, after the
rainfall, there is spread some fertilizer, such as nitrogen, which
accelerates the growth of the sugarcane. The water is used to greater
advantage because the plant take advantage of it more rapidly and in great
amounts before the water evaporates or (word indistinct). In short, there
are still these imponderable factors.

We also struggle against these imponderable problems by trying to place in
practice in our country certain techniques related to artificial rains. You
know that the planes have already flown over this province, over Camaguey
and Oriente, and they truly have made rain. This is not fantastic at all,
but rather the application of certain physical principles that allow a
cloud, which is merely condensed water or water vapor, to be condensed and
to fall as rain. All this that you see above is water in the form of water
vapor (laughter). And the clouds carry this water vapor. This is
essentially what clouds are. Sometimes they pass by and leave us without
water, but if, when they pass, we can make them spill the water, we shall
have a yearly greater average of rainfall than the natural average.

Naturally of course, for such a thing to be successful, it is necessary to
have clouds. If there are no clouds, then I do not believe that they have
yet discovered a way to make these clouds (laughter). But even so, it has
been proved successful in a series of countries and it seems that our
country has favorable conditions for this technique. And a group of
comrades have been touring several countries and gathering experiences to
be applied in our country. This is to say that we will have more water by
knowing well the technique of artificial rain and we will have more water
for the dams we are building. Also we will make better use of the water to
the degree that the country's resources allow us to have greater quantities
of fertilizer. I believe that you understand this perfectly well (applause)

For the year 1967, besides water and fertilizers, we are going to use other
resources--the sugarcane area. And thus, between this year's winter
sugarcane and the spring sugarcane of next year--to be cut in 1967--we are
planning some 20,000 caballerias of sugarcane (applause). (indistinct
question from audience, to which Castro replies--ed.) Well, not all, but an
important part. This is so that there will be no central, neither large or
small, which does not work at full capacity. It is unfortunate when a
central completes its harvest very early and, having the capacity to grind
more, has no more sugarcane--particularly when there is sufficient
equipment and it is all in working condition.

The winter cane will be planted and when the dry spell comes there will be
many tractors breaking the ground like crazy--and they (?are going) to
break ground like crazy. Besides, the tractors will produce a greater
yield. In addition, there will be more implements. This also means that
next year for the weeding it will be necessary to have more equipment, and
more--above everything--equipment to mechanize the weeding: "Rotobator,"
like they are called, or Rotobator--it should be said this way because this
is in Spanish--and the Peruvian plow, and the spider, and also fertilizing
equipment. It is necessary to mechanize all those activities which greatly
increase man's production, just as we have to increase the production of
hoeing machines in order to put an end to the manual hoeing of pastures. A
man hoeing that type of pasture does not produce enough milk or meat to
feed a (?cast), practically speaking (laughter, applause). Anyone
understands that, if we want abundance, (?productivity) must be increased.

Even in the middle ages when the world population was much smaller there
was much hunger, and man had to work with a scythe, cutting grass to feed
the cattle. Today, many must work with a harvester which will do the the
work of 100 men. Then that man can produce enough grass for a sufficient
number of cattle to feed a few people with milk and meat. All these things
are simple enough for our people to understand them better all the time.

However, the canecutting machines are now beginning to be developed. It
must be said that those machines have been very successful in our country,
the Soviet cutting machines, which have been developed, practically, in two
years. Many other nations have taken much time in trying to resolve this
problem, but they never solved the problem of cutting cane fields filled
with weeds. They used to burn the sugarcane. Of course, to burn the cane is
to burn organic material, to destroy many thousands of tons of nitrogen and
precisely (?nitrogen), aside from the advantages that the (?organic)
material has for agriculture. That is to say that by burning the cane you
destroy natural resources and the natural conditions of the earth for
higher production. We cannot burn the sugarcane.

In some countries, they are obliged to burn the sugarcane, not only because
they do not have machines capable of cutting it with weeds, but because
they also have countless poisonous insects, snakes, and all types of pests
which forces them to burn the sugarcane for safety's sake.

We do not have those problems. What we need are machines that will cut
cane, and without the need for burning it--and we are achieving this, that
is, the Soviet technicians are achieving it. Now those machines have been
initially tested this year. Next year, we will have 250 more
machines--still not many--but they are still being perfected.

For 1967, we will still not have a new mass of machines. They still will
be, one can say, in the final stage of perfection. But the machines will be
in mass production in 1968. Moreover, in 1968, we shall already have much
more sugarcane area prepared for machine cutting. It is not only a question
of the number of machines, but also of the surface of the land being so
prepared that the machines can be fully utilizes. For 1968 we shall have a
considerable number of machines and a considerable number of caballerias
planted in the proper manner for mechanized cutting. Meanwhile, in 1966 and
in 1967, the rest must be put into that condition, above all, in 1967
(applause), when we will have to produce, approximately 1.5 million tons
more than this year with only 500 additional machines.

When will this agony, this rush-rush of the harvest end? Unquestionably,
when we have enough machines and have mastered their use as well as the
proper preparation of the land. But we firmly believe that the major part
of the sugarcane will be cut with machines, although there will always be
some sugarcane which will have to be cut with a machete. In addition, we
will have loaders. Also other techniques are being tested, such as the
machine, the collection center, which will permit the receiving of cane
with more weeds and result in an increase of the output per man. (sentence
as heard) We have hopes that with the application of the techniques being
studied, the mass of cutters will increase its average of production. We
also think that a working mass, which is better fed each year, will
increase its output (applause).

We believe that the extraordinary number of pastures which are being
prepared will also help in the production of the 10 million tons of
sugarcane (applause and shouts from audience)

I believe that the chickens have helped somewhat this year, as a comrade
here says. (A voice from audience shouts: "Also the inseminators") yes, but
indirectly. They will be the daughters of the inseminators (laughter). He
has those cows which will be the result of the product of insemination and
which will produce more milk. We had forgotten that we are at a school of
insemination, you know, that is what is the matter. These will play an
important role also in the plans of the 10 million tons of sugarcane.

In short, we have to advance along every road to resolve those tasks. We
cannot enjoy the luxury of saying: "Let us take this central away from this
mountainous zone and plant this sugarcane in the lowlands". We could not
fulfill this goal. I believe that from 1970 onward, we will be able to make
adjustments with regard to the centrals located in areas where a machine
cannot be used and the sugarcane must be cut by hand--areas where livestock
can feed perfectly well; and take other areas, which are in pastureland,
and place centrals there.

Naturally, the new centrals being planned will have level land and

However, there is one resource which I have not mentioned: the increase per
caballeria of productivity. We will be able to reach those 10 million tons
in fewer caballerias when the output reaches 80,000, 90,000, or 100,000
arrobas per caballeria. We should aim for an output of at least 100,000 per
caballeria, this is, perhaps, a difficult goal. Perhaps we will achieve it,
perhaps we may just come close to it. But we are optimists, and we should
be optimists. A believer in science--and we are believers in science--would
say that it is possible to produce 100,000 arrobas in a caballeria of cane
without irrigation--without irrigation--particularly in those black,
organically rich soils which retain moisture well, but not so easily in the
soils such as the red clay of Matanzas, which hold less moisture. But with
the water that does fall--which is not little--and the proper preparation
of the soil and the use of the formulas and the proper quantities of
fertilizers, 100,000 (arrobas--ed.) can be obtained even without

With irrigation, in reality in the future we must never allow a production
of less than 150,000 (arrobas per caballeria--ed.). We believe it is
possible by using the right variety of cane--because there are canes that
grow more--to make better use of water, and the genetic centers are even
working to produce types of cane that are better, faster growing, of
greater sugar yield, and which make better us of water. Naturally they have
to concern themselves not only that the cane yield large amounts of weight
but also that it must yield much sugar per hundredweight. It must also grow
straight and not fall over easily. This means that the technicians of the
Genetics Research Center who cross tens and tens of thousands of plants
trying to achieve the varieties they desire, will without any manner of
doubt achieve canes which are more adapted to our climate and our needs.

Therefore, to aspire that one day we will reach a production of 150,000
arrobas with irrigation, with the necessary fertilizers and the proper
varieties, and they are taken care of (at this point the transmission drops
off the air for a brief period--ed.) increases productivity because it
fights the borer. It combats it through a biological procedure and the
borer is responsible for low sugarcane yields. Mice also, that is,
sugarcane has more than one enemy. In order for sugarcane to have a high
yield--with water, with fertilizer, protected from disease, with varieties
that are disease resistant, and also protecting it from various plagues by
various means, very high yields can be achieved.

It appears that our climate is a climate particularly favorable because
traditionally Cuba's yield in sugar has been very high. The bad things here
have been the low yields in cane per caballeria. We must produce high
yields of sugarcane with high yields in sugar per caballeria. This year the
yield in sugar has been higher in spite of the fact that the harvest was
begun earlier and that sugarcane in December has a lower sugar yield. That
is a good proof of the improvement in work in the processing industry and
that work in general, agricultural as well as industrial, has improved.

Some provinces, such as that of Oriente, passed 13 percent in yield.
Oriente went beyond 13 percent in sugar yield. It would be necessary to
analyze--and the analysis of the sugar industry must find the factors that
have caused Oriente to achieve a yield of more than 13 percent. Were those
industrial factors?

They could be. Were they climatic factors? They could be. Was it sugarcane
free of leaves? It could be. Was it a greater volume of cane carried over
from the previous year? It could be. However, it is necessary that we
obtain an answer as to why sugarcane that is left (a woman in the crowd
yells "and the cane must be cut down low--ed.) (Fidel continues amid
laughter) . . . cut down low where the greatest percentage of sugar is
concentrated. (laughter and shouting from the crowd). I am sure she must be
from Oriente; there is not the slightest doubt of that (applause). She must
be from Oriente and from Guantanamo. (she yells something back,
unintelligible) (applause).

The time that the sugarcane lies in the field before being hauled to the
mill may also have some effect in this respect.

All these factors may give us tens of thousands of tons more with
practically the same amount of work and the same amount of cane. that is
why in 1966 and 1967 we must make extra efforts to produce 6.5 million in
1966 and 7.5 million tons in 1967. And in 1968 we must produce at least 8
million (applause) And if possible, produce more than 8 in 1968 (applause).
It is redundant to tell you that we have markets for our sugar. It is
redundant to tell you (somebody yells from the crowd) water is coming over
there. Over there (again some woman yells something). No, because I was
going to say that when the dam on the Huaso River is built, we are going to
have enough water. Therefore we will have more cane and higher yields in
the area of Guantanamo.

We are not going to indulge in sugar restrictions. It is well that I say a
few words on a certain aspect of the sugar future. At this time, sugar has
one of the lowest prices in the past 30 years. This means that we are
passing through a period of very low prices in sugar, for part of our
sugar, the part that we sell in the so-called free market. this is where
many sellers participate when there is excessive sugar and low prices
result. In the same way, two years ago, we were getting very high prices.
This caused a great increase in sugar production. Part of our sugar is
suffering from these fluctuations in prices. The sugar that we sell in the
socialist camp has a stable price, a price that is guaranteed to us. This
permits us to estimate the income we are going to have from the amounts of
sugar we sell.

There is the price of the sugar that we sell outside the socialist camp in
a market where chaos exists, where prices rise and fall. Our country could
have a much better place in the markets today,incomparably better, if it
were not for the policy followed by the capitlists. This being a country
with favorable conditions for the production of sugar, it should not have
lost the markets that it lost. Nobody should have been allowed to wrest
those markets from it. However, various factors intervened. In the first
place, we had trade agreements with the United States which forces us to
allow it very low tariffs. This meant that its merchandise played lower
tariffs than merchandise coming from Europe. As a result, capitalist
businessmen bought American merchandise that arrived cheaper than European
merchandise because of lower tariffs.

The result was that no country of Europe could afford to trade under a
system where they bought from Cuba, the Cubans, instead of spending their
money in European industries, spent it buying North American products. The
result was that sugar beet production developed considerably in Europe and
sugar beet sugar costs twice as much and somewhat more than twice a much to
produce in the country where the cheapest beet sugar is produced. It can be
said that, economically, if a European country can buy sugar at half of
what it costs to produce, it is good business for that European country.

However, past circumstances decreed that trade between those countries and
us did not develop. As a result they developed a sugar industry in those
countries. Our possibilities for trade were lost. Those circumstances could
not be changed from one year to the next because sugar interests were
created within those countries. The sugar beet producers, although they
produce something that is costly for the country--it is not easy for a
country to ignore that those interests have been created, the interests of
the sugar beet producers.

New sugar cane producing areas were also developed for the same reasons.
What policy was followed by the capitlists? In the country we had hundreds
of thousands of men without work. Dead time was the terror of all. Men
waited eagerly for the beginning of the sugarcane harvest. You all know
that history perfectly well. And what did our capitlists do? If the price
fell, in agreement with the other sugar producers, they restricted
production so that prices remained high. Who suffered? The workers
suffered. When they reduced sugar production by a half-million tons, they
reduced the harvest time by 20 or 30 days, they harmed the economy. They
did not suffer. They made the same amount of money, or even more money.
They kept the prices up.

However, that policy encouraged producers that have fewer natural
conditions for the production of sugar than we had. With a policy wherein
they arrange an agreement among all the sugar producers, and they say "Let
us all produce less," they are encouraging sugar production in those
countries that do not have the same conditions that we have, and that
cannot compete with us (applause). We could speak strongly--who could speak
strongly on matters of economy before? And of the interests of the people?
But our country does not do any business to maintain artificial producers
of cane sugar, because that would be to the detriment of our interests,
that nature gives each country. Some countries are given great iron mines,
or were given gold mines, or were given ideal conditions for raising grain.
Others were given great oil deposits.

Each country has certain natural, that is ideal, climatic conditions to
produce much cane. We produce cane with much less effort and sugar with
much less effort than other countries. Fine. Let others whose conditions
equal ours produce, but why pursue a policy which means bread today and
hunger tomorrow? Prices of three or four or perhaps three and one-half
cents, that is, a little more for two or three hunger today and bread
tomorrow and forever, and to pursue this policy particularly (few words
indistinct) of hunger, because in the capitalist system with these prices,
Gentlemen, the people would really be starving, starving. We would be in a
kind of (word indistinct).

That did not happen. On the contrary. Why? because, Gentlemen, today we
have two advantages, two, two with which to fight on the market. Two
advantages: the natural advantage we received from nature, and the
socialist economic system of production. (applause) Our economic system
represents an advantage over the capitlists producers of the economy will
help the sugar producers. Before, when the price of sugar dropped here, the
tobacco producers did not help the sugar producers, nor did the textile
producers, that is, the capitalist factory owners. They could sell more or
sell less, but no one deprived himself of a cent, saying "Let us pay the
workers a better wage." (?A sugar producer assists the sugar capitalists?)
No. Everyone defended himself as best he could.

If the price of sugar dropped, the sugar producers were ruined. If the
coffee prices instead of the sugar prices dropped than the coffee producers
were ruined. If the tobacco prices dropped, then the tobacco producers were
ruined. The price of sugar could go very high,and the coffee producers
would get a much lower price for their coffee.

Today the situation is not like that. Today the country's entire economy is
responsible for the sugar producer's wages. Thus, that is the case, that is
the reason why, when the sugar prices are lower on the world market, the
wages for the sugar workers are higher. This is an unquestionable truth.

I would say that we have three advantages: the natural conditions; the
socialist system of production; and the sugar treaties we signed with the
socialist countries, particularly with the Soviet Union. We signed a treaty
with the Soviet Union for 5 million tons by 1970 at six cents a pound.
(applause) That is, the biggest power concentrated between the Soviet Union
and Cuba at present. This permits us to continue to increase our production
and to bear up against the low price at which we are selling part of our
sugar today with an eye to the future. Thus, then it will be the
revolutionary government's policy not to promote any restrictive artificial
measure designed to maintain artificial prices which do not solve anyone's
problems and which are harmful to the country's future interest. We shall
bear up against these low prices for our sugar as long as is necessary, and
those who do not have the natural or social conditions for competing with
us should withdraw from the markets. (applause)

That will be our policy which is the opposite of the policy which was
always pursued in the past. When we (?have produced) the 10 million tons of
sugar we shall see what happens, for we shall then be a dangerous
competitor. Since we must compete with capitalists, let us have an all-out
competition with the capitalists. What do we care if some capitalists are
ruined? (applause) We defend the principle of the international division of
labor. Let each country produce whatever it has the best natural conditions
for producing, where man's efforts bring greater fruits and he can exchange
products with those countries which produce other things for which they
possess the best natural conditions.

That will be our policy, and we shall be able to pursue it because not only
are we developing sugar production, we are developing our sugar production
intensely. We are developing our fruit production intensely. In general, we
are developing our entire agricultural production intensely, and it will
not be many years before agriculture has been developed to such a degree
that there will not be one inch of land which is not being used for most
useful and suitable cultivation; cane here, pasturage there, fruit

Well, all those things for which we possess natural conditions, and where
we cannot sow cane, sugar root products, or vegetable products, we shall
plant lumber trees. We shall have patience and faith in our future, knowing
that the trees we plant, trees which we shall fertilize, will be available
in half the time.

But this is a small island, for we do not have unlimited land. We are an
island with a limited amount of land. We cannot grow that way, but we can
grow this way. It is like when (applause) when someone has a plot of land
and wants to build a house for 20 families. He will have to build it 20
stories high. He will not be able to build 20 little houses. So, we must
seek those products which produce most per caballeria. If we had hundreds
of thousands of square kilometers, we would have enough land, and it would
be possible to let a man with a (word indistinct) to produce any product on
10 caballerias, although the value might be very low per caballeria.

Then the product per many would be important. However, we are interested in
two things: quantity of product per caballeria and quantity of produce per
man. We must reconcile these two things. We must not waste a single inch of
land. That is what we must do. Then we must all begin to strive for higher
production per inch of land, or per hectare or caballeria, whatever you
want to call it, through technology. That is our path.

In the future, we shall not be able to produce more sugar by sowing more
land--We could say more sugar--but we must produce more sugar because we
eat other things. We shall go over to other things. We shall increase other
branches of industry and keep sugar at the level of (word indistinct).
Possibly, in a world which is growing at the speed with which the present
world is growing, at the speed with which the population is growing,
greater than that at which food products are increasing, a food producing
country such as ours will enjoy a privileged position in the world.

Population is increasing. Unfortunately, many countries are underdeveloped.
The sole solution for the world will, then, be for us to produce more. The
solution for the world will be that each underdeveloped country be in a
position to produce more and more. In other words, the solution lies in the
revolutionary struggle of the people for their liberation, and once
liberated (applause) for them to eradicate ignorance (applause), eradicate
ignorance, eradicate their ignorance of cultural things, develop the
country, and employ technology because those countries have great natural
resources. There exist enough natural resources in the world to feed the
entire population.

The present population of the world amounts to 3 billion human beings, and
in 35 years there will be 6 billion. Now, how is the world to solve these
problems with an illiteracy rate of 80 to 90 percent, producing in the most
primitive conditions? One need but consider this to realize that the
nations have no alternative but to liberate themselves from imperialism so
that they can do what we are now doing. However, the imperialists try to
keep us from doing it. How are those billions of human begins to be fed,
without any technology, without any culture, and with infinitely low
production? The natural resources such as large rivers are being wasted,
the land is being lost because men need instruments with which to work.

Because of the difficulties we are having in solving our problem, we can
understand the difficulties other nations will have and how they will solve

Without any doubt, agriculture is the best way for our country's economic
development. By 1970 we shall have developed agriculture extraordinarily.
We shall see about the period between 1970 and 1980. We shall have time
enough between 1965 and 1970 to know exactly what to do between 1970 and
1980. We know very well what we must do and what we can do between 1965 and

However, more and more young people are entering our universities to embark
upon technological studies of all kinds. By 1970 our situation will be
quite different from our situation when we began. For example thee were not
even three inseminators at the time of the victory of the revolution. By
the end of this year we shall have 1,000 inseminators. (applause) The
significance thereof can be appreciated by the fact that, if the country
invests 10,000 dollars on a good quality animal, it can use it with 4,000
or 5,000 cows. This means that the resources are increased extraordinarily
which permits the accelerated development of livestock in quantity and
particularly in quality.

Well, now we know exactly what we must do and agriculture will receive a
tremendous boost; so will industry, particularly with agricultural
development and the satisfaction of our people's needs in mind. For
example, we know that all the cement plants we now have, when producing at
top capacity, do not even fill half our needs. We need at least four more
plants of equal capacity in order to meet the infinitely of construction
requirements for building schools, hospitals, highways, plants, agriculture
and livestock centers, and housing. This is a great necessity, because
(words indistinct) needs cement for a room, needs houses.

However, the requirements are laying claim, many requirements are laying
claim to limited resources. We are distributing these resources with a
dropper. This for the (word indistinct) center, this for that bridge, this
for that other bridge, this for a store, this for a hospital, this for a
school, this for an aqueduct, and this for a house, this (?for repairs).
So, when the people ask--and it is logical that they should ask because
they are in need--generally, they do not stop to think how (words
indistinct),that we are a poor country and cannot pull the things we need
to satisfy all our requirements out of a hat like magicians.

That is what Comrade Borrego meant when he was speaking of the difficult
road of a country's economic development, beginning with an underdeveloped
country. Had the capitalists left (?the country) full of cement plants,
full of fertilizer plants, full of everything, we would be well off, and we
would only have to distribute them. But they left us the work and we must
create everything, and in order to create everything we must work very
hard. We must devote a large amount of the little we have to all this, if
we wish to cease being a country lacking many things, as soon as possible,
and to become, as soon as possible, a country whose essential needs are
being met.

It is true that something has been done by a better distribution and
utilization of what we had. Without a doubt something has been done. In all
fields: in education extraordinarily; in public health extraordinarily;
unemployment was liquidated by making the land produce. Before, it was a
question of how to find work, and now it is a question of finding the men
to do the work facing us. (applause)

No doubt, all this has meant great social progress for the country. From
time to time we do not have this or that thing, but no one is starving in
this country. Everyone has a chance to work in this country, particularly
in the rural areas. In the cities there are still people who, well, want
jobs which do not exist. They are not there. (?We are not going to create
an office job for anyone). It is almost better to pay him, help him, and
make him study. What shall we now do with office personnel? We are not
going to allow them to be unemployed. We shall pay them, but make them
study. At least we shall be training them. We shall mainly choose the
youngest, and we shall make them study. This is much better business for
the country, instead of having the people filling our paper, or sitting
without (word indistinct). We shall have them studying. That is what we
shall be doing. If we are going to spend the same amount of money, let us
spend it converting these citizens into citizens capable of giving
magnificent service in future years, and not into a man who will become
fossilized behind some desk (laughter). Of course, in the rural areas the
people (word indistinct) hard work. They wanted whatever work they could
get. The dead period no longer exists. I believe it is dead forever. the
dead period is truly dead. I do not believe anyone fears it anymore.

On the contrary, we are being forces to mechanize. We reward the best
canecutters, and yet we hope that in the future this work will [Unreadable
text] that is, the job of canecutter, that the man will become mechanized.
However, since there will always be some sugarcane to cut, we shall be able
to pay the cane cutter better. The day must come when better economic
conditions will permit us to improve the wages not only of the canecutters,
as we have just done, but also of the other workers. The wages of the
livestock workers has also improved. Many of them were earning 74 pesos,
and measures have been taken for another wage increase. As with the
pasturage, man's productivity, and the productivity of land is being
increased. The men who work in the dairies will get 20 pesos more, that is
their wages will be increased to 94 pesos.

It is logical that we offer incentives in those jobs which benefit us the
most and, of course, sugarcane is the first place. It is one of the hardest
jobs, one of the most difficult jobs. We hope to reduce the number of men
who have to cut cane by and when we reach that point where the number of
those who still cut cane by hand is at a minimum, we hope that the national
economy will permit a better remuneration for that hard task than they
receive today, although what they receive today is an improvement over what
they did receive before.

A good proof of this are those workers who have earned more than 2,000
pesos, more than 300 pesos per month during this sugarcane harvest. Of
course, I do not believe that there ever was a canecutter who ever received
an average of more than 100 pesos per month before or maintained that
average for four or five months because the sugarcane harvests did not last
that long.

We have to resort to machines and in that way we will liberate man from the
hardest jobs. It is painful for us to have to produce such low yields as we
do with manual labor. It is painful that maximum advantage is not take of
the benefits of machinery. Here are some contrasts: While we meet here for
this ceremony for the best macheteros, we have with us the two Soviet
cosmonauts (applause) Belyayev and Leontof, Leon, Leonov, Leonov (laughter)
Belyayev and Leonov. My Russian is very poor. (laughter) So it is, while
man is now in space and he flies hundreds of kilometers in space, and they
walk through the sky, and they leave the cosmic ships, we are still cutting
cane by hand. (laughter). Those are the contrasts.

Technology and science have advanced in extraordinary fashion and we have
to advance also. If we want to create socialism and create communism, there
is one most important thing--abundance. Such an abundance that men will
have everything they need. This means that men will give of themselves what
they are capable of giving and they will receive all they need for
themselves. That is the communist aspiration of our revolution. To arrive
at this we will have to create abundance in practically unlimited
quantities with our work and with technology. We are beginning that path
which stretches into the distance ahead--a path with many uncertainties.

I wanted to say to you (at this point someone starts up a motorcycle and
there is a loud racket heard) Thee is a noise there, someone is running his
motorcycle. I want to say something to that motorcycle. (laughter) I wanted
to say that when a worker wins a prize, a first, second, or third price,
that must count in the records of the workers. And we are going to study
the possibility that in the same way that the workers who receive the
50-year award in an industry receive more money when they retire, we will
establish a system in which points will be accumulated.

This means that if a worker won a prize and then he wins more prizes he
will accumulate points, and we must take in to account that we have workers
here who have made an extraordinary effort and are over 40 years old and
some even more than 50, and when they retire these points will count for
better retirement pay. Naturally the young men here will not be interested
in that, but possibly their fathers or their brothers will be. There are
many of advanced years who have been cutting cane. We are going to study
the possibility of establishing this system by which points accumulated
will receive additional amounts of money on retirement than presently
authorized by law. (applause)

Naturally one could say, "What good is that, if under communism each will
have what he needs?" That is true, but we are not going to achieve
communism in five or 10 years. And while we are achieving that abundance
when we can say that each citizen will have what he needs, there will be
many men who will retire and there will be many men for whom the merits he
accumulated during his life will be acknowledged and rewarded when he
reached the age when he needs that protection. These accumulations of
points by winning prizes for retirement are of interest to the older men.
Those who are 17 or 18 years of age, well, I believe that we will have
reached communism before they retire. (applause)

At any rate those who work the most receive the most. Here we have the
prizes and above all, as I said before, they should be made part of the
record of each worker. I am sure that for many of you the greatest source
of price before your relatives, before your children, will be these prizes
you have received. The workers who have received a diploma from the
government or the party, or a national or provincial or regional prize,
will display it with the greatest price.

Next year, since there will be more cane, we will have to add some more
prizes. This does not mean--we do not know (he laughs) what we are going to
give in the future. However, next year we are going to include 100
automobiles among the prizes (applause). We all know that those who have
cut more than 100,000 arrobas will have a house built for them. This is an
extra prize. (applause) This extra prize for those who reach that figure
will be maintained. Next year we are going to include extraordinary prizes.
This is not a lottery prize but a prize for work. (laughter) This is not a
special drawing but a prize for extraordinary work. This is not a question
of luck, but of merit.

One hundred houses will be given out among those who cut 100,000 or more
arrobas. If there are more than 100, we will distribute the houses to those
who cut the most over 100,000 arrobas or who accumulate most points in
their work. (Some woman shouts something with causes great mirth in the
crowd) The truth is that that would be an equitable right. INIT should
establish some small prizes. However, cutting cane must come first. We know
that kitchen work is a hard job, but we are not giving prizes to the cooks
yet. (laughter) Perhaps the day will come. They have their own system of
emulation, but this is a special emulation in sugarcane because sugarcane
is above all the basis of the economy. Without cane and sugar there is no
nation. We repeat what the capitlists used to say. They said: "Without
sugar there are no millionaires." There was sugar, but there was no nation
here. Sugar is the foundation for our economic development. It is our
principal source of exchange because from sugar comes the greatest part of
the exchange with which we buy the this we import into the country.

Traditionally then, who was it that received the least? The sugarcane
workers. How did the people who cut the cane live? In misery, living in
barracks under the worst living conditions. Unfortunately those barracks
still exist. I take this opportunity to say this, because we believe that,
if there is a shortage of cement and we have to build housing, we must give
priority to housing in agriculture, in state farms, and above all in
unpopulated regions, as in Camaguey this year. They are building 4,000
houses there. Half of them for those who already live there--it would not
be fair to build them only for the new arrivals--and the other half for the
new arrivals. However, Camaguey poses a very serious problem for us. More
than 50,000 cane-cutters were mobilized to work there. We must establish a
policy, and housing may be one of the things that may help us solve it; it
should be one off the things that will help us to populate the province of
Camaguey. Of course, more houses in Camaguey than anywhere else. Due to a
social and economic need we must populate that province. We must give
preference to the rural areas over the cities.

We know that there are many needs in the cities. We know that there are
many families living in one room and there are many problems. We will
always build some housing in the cities, but the needs are much greater in
the rural areas and the rural areas have received less than any other area
of the country because the rural areas were exploited by capitalists. The
rural areas received much less than the cities. They had no communications,
highways, electric lights, moving picture theaters, nor parks--so many
things that are in the cities and must be had in the cities. These are
things in which the country invests much money. We shall follow a housing
policy which will be aimed at improving living conditions in the rural

The prizes for next year will be: 100 trips with two members of family,
1,250 motorcycles, 1,750 refrigerators, 2,00 trips to Varadero with the
family, just like this year, 100 automobiles, which possibly may be the
first prize, and 100 houses as extraordinary prizes. The houses will have a
garage and everything (shouting, applause). We think that whoever cuts
100,000 arrobas will be among the first (somebody shouts something from the
crowd). We will see, we will see, there may be some small prize, but first
we must take care of the man with the caneknife. (shouting from the crowd
continues) The loaders do not belong to the brigades. The brigades also
receive prizes as far as I know.

(shouting from the crowd) Well, why don't you organize them? (laughter)
Organize into a brigade. There are many advantages. (someone shouts
something about volunteer canecutters) Well, a volunteer who wants to
emulate with the collosi will have to cut 100,000 arrobas, because the
volunteers are becoming more adept and when they have acquired training,
they are going to fight hard because they had better nourishment in the
cities than in the rural areas. A man who grew up in the city, even if his
family was a humble one, consumed more protein and calories than the boy
who grew up on a cane estate.

They have a constitution that enables them when they are well trained to
compete with the macheteros who cut 100,000 arrobas. Therefore, the
extraordinary prize will be for extraordinary work and I believe that there
will be volunteers who will cut 100,000 arrobas (applause). That is why,
possibly, there may be more than 100 winners. Perhaps 100,000 arrobas will
not win those prizes. At any rate these will be the prizes.

We are still short some motorcycles because of the reasons I explained
previously, although we have some without the sidecars. We have acquired
them with sidecars, because we have a great interest in avoiding accidents
and we thought that, although they were much more expensive with sidecars,
they were much safer for the workers. In addition, he could also take his
family out for a ride once in a while, because these motorcycles are like a
small car. Now you will have to learn to drive them (laughter). It would
grieve me to receive news of accidents among our best macheteros. Therefore
we beseech you to learn to drive them, to have patience and do not drive
them until you learn how. There is no reason for driving fast. Competition
is in the canefields and not on the highways (laughter). This is
particularly to be avoided when you take your family for a ride.

That is why some of them are still not here. With respect to refrigerators,
all the electric ones are here. A large part of the refrigerators requested
are electric. We do not have the gas refrigerators. The National Industry
of Domestic Appliances (INPUD) could produce the electric refrigerators
because it was tooled to produce them, however, they could not produce gas
refrigerators here in Cuba. They had to be bought. They will be here during
this half of the year. Therefore those who need gas refrigerators, because
they live in the rural areas, will have to wait for a while, while they are
brought to Cuba and distributed. Unfortunately, we are to blame because
they have not arrived in time. We thought that the comrades of INPUD could
resolve the problem. A little too late the gentlemen of INPUD declared they
were powerless to resolve the problem. They told us we would have to buy
them. We hope that they will redeem themselves by producing them next year.
This year we will have to spend a greater amount of foreign credits by
importing them. Next year we will be able to get them at lower cost. But
they have been bought and we have to wait for their arrival to be

All the other prizes are here and the other refrigerators will require a
little bit of patience. However, they will get here. (applause) So the
women of the prize winners can be preparing the corner where they are going
to put them. And making plans and start learning to make candy, ice cream,
and all those sorts of things (laughter). (indistinct shouting from the
crowd.) I believe that they must (word distinct) for your safety. Well,
learn. (more shouting, the crowd, apparently some man is saying he cannot
learn to drive his motorcycle--ed.) I believe that the comrades of the
union and the Interior Ministry can organize training.

The comrades of the Ministry can help you learn to drive and later also
help in the matter of obtaining a license. Now, you will probably ask about
the man who cannot learn under any circumstances. Well, if he is a
machetero of 100,000 arrobas he can pay a chauffeur to drive him around on
the motorcycle. (laughter) He can get together with some comrade from the
brigade who is capable of learning (more laughter) Well, that is your
problem, after all. (laughter) You chose the motorcycle. If you cannot
learn, then choose a refrigerator. (laughter) I believe that, how can a man
who cuts the number of arrobas of cane as you do, gentlemen, not learn how
to drive? Play with this, so that you can learn. (laughter) If you cannot
learn, tell the man to take it away. (laugher) (background reply)

It is a question of public order. Are there no police out there in the
canefields? You can run it a lot out there.

I do not believe anyone is going to be fined, but I urge you to obey the
law. Do not expect me to tell you to ride around (few words indistinct) on
the motorcycle. (laughter) Moreover, you will be given a sign showing that
the motorcycle was an award. Thus, you will be fully identified. If there
are two (someone in the background says: No, just one award), if one family
gets two (laughter), I believe that it would be better they can get married
later (unfinished sentence). They will raise a family and will need more
refrigerators. It would better next year for one of them who wins a bicycle
to choose a refrigerator so that the same prize will not be repeated twice.
The houses will be built with a garage and everything. (A man in the
audience shouts to Castro) Well, we will have to wait until the time comes
when pickup trucks are distributed. How much did the truck driver earn?
About 2,500 pesos. Moreover, why would he want the motorcycle if he is
driving a truck? (laughter) It is very deserving and one should recognize
the honor and the merit, but what will you do with your truck and what will
the (?crabber do with his crabs) if there is no one to cut the cane?
(laughter). Without cane there can be no half a million. We shall help and
we shall give an award to whom does the most difficult work, most
difficult: the canecutter, Gentlemen. (applause).

The volunteer worker who leaves his family for four or five months in order
to make the harvest possible--we will reward him in your own interest and
in the interest of the entire country. We shall (word indistinct) our
attention by giving awards to these workers. Otherwise, otherwise, if we
did not do this, we would be making a mistake. I believe that the time of
the awards will come. But right now these awards cannot be granted. They
must be studied closely. (Someone in the crowd talks)

It was a lot worse when a man earned 10 pesos in four hours. It was worse
because it created inflation, and they distributed the money, and, so what
did we gain? (sentence not very coherent) More money can be spent on the
cane than it is worth, and that is why I believe that the hoeing should be
eliminated and the operation mechanized. It will then be possible to earn
more operating a machine. In the matter of norms, it is logical that the
productivity of labor with a hoe is very low. The salary question must be
related to the productivity of labor. But this is a problem which requires
sufficient knowledge for discussion. I do not know how this problem
compares with other types of work. The norms may be low, they may not be
low. (crowd talks to Fidel Castro) Well, I am going to ask you an honest
question. (Man keeps on talking) I am going to tell you something. Before
the norms there was considerable disorder in all this, was there not?
(crowd: Yes) and there were people who sometimes earned seven, eight, and
ten pesos in a few hours, and 16 also, someone tells me.

What is worse, or what is more difficult to do? (crowd answers) and piracy
to boot. (few words indistinct) Then there was a reduction. It happened
since it was not possible to conti that way. (sentence not complete) That
is why it was necessary to establish norms. Starting with that, it will be
possible to improve these norms. (applause) Starting with that, adjustments
can be made. They will be carefully studied according to our production
level and insofar as our economy permits. The problem of raising wages does
not depend upon us. What can we do? We cannot give what we do not have. We
would be deceiving our (?grandfathers) if we began to pay more money and if
there were nothing to buy with the money. What happens in many countries
might happen here, such as when the wages are increased 20 percent and
prices are increased 50 percent.

(?Our first concern) is that there are enough articles so that there will
be something to buy with all the money they earn. When more articles than
money become available, then we shall be nearing the time when we can
improve the wages of those with the lowest incomes (applause) Rest assured
that all the men of the revolution are most constantly concerned with doing
whatever will improve the living conditions of our workers and raise our
people's living standard. We know that many are still being paid better. We
know it, while others were excessively remunerated. Suffice it to say that
an industrial worker who was (?given an excellent fitness report) is
receiving 700 pesos a month. Listen to that, caramba, as they say.
(Laugher) But why? Because that was the chaos which exited under
capitalism, while another workers worked four months and earned a pittance.
the capitalists sought to create certain privileges among the workers. That
is not the only reason: the struggle. There were workers who were much
better organized. They fought. They went on strike. In industries which had
enormous profits, and they began to raise the wages considerably. Now, when
the revolution comes, the revolution cannot pursue a policy of reducing
wages. That would be a mistaken policy, an impolite policy. It is easy to
give, but it is difficult to take away.

The revolution took away from the privileged people, that is, the large
landowners, the big industrialists and landowners. However, with the
workers it could not establish levels. You understand that legally it was
possible to establish a level, theoretically speaking, of course. You know
that (?one person works better than another), so let us lower your wages,
and raise the other fellow's. That would be disastrous from a political
viewpoint. This is not the best way.

The path which seems the most logical, the most practical, and the simplest
way is not always the best way. That is why, as our economy develops, we
must invest this increase in our wealth in two ways: by improving the wages
of those workers who are doing productive and useful work and who receive a
relatively lower wage than workers in other fields, which are equally as
difficult and as useful, but which are better paid; and also by stimulating
those labor groups as are interested in giving incentives.

If our interests lie in agricultural work, we must not stimulate office
work. There are certain types of work which will be frozen because we want
the population to turn their interest toward those forms of work which are
most immediately productive, which create more wealth for the country. That
is why, in the future, as the economy improves, the conditions of those who
are worse off among the workers who produce material goods will have to be
improved. It will be necessary to improve the conditions of those branches
of labor we are interested in stimulating, as we are doing with sugarcane.
We know that there are still many such cases, and an equalization cannot be
done overnight or in one year. We must make an equalization without taking
from those who have a little more, for that would be to weaken the

We must improve the lot of those who are worse off with the gain we obtain
from labor, with our country's increased wealth. With this, I believe that
what I mainly wanted to say has been said. In the name of our party and of
our government, we warmly congratulate you all, and we hope (applause) that
in the coming years many of you will continue to appear here and will also
participate in this ceremony. We also hope (crowd shouts: Chinese machetes)
Chinese machetes. (more unintelligible shouting) Well, this is a problem:
It is better for each person to cut with the machete he likes best because
later someone will say yes (interrupted by shouts and hails). The majority,
is it not so? And who cuts with the other types of machetes? (more

Good. I see that it amounts to an elementary problem that you must have the
type of machete with which you work most easily and which gives you the
greatest yield. (More shouting) I believe that the comrades who are
responsible for the supplies and instruments for the harvest must take this
point into consideration: (?Issue) that type of machete which gives the
best yield. Files, also. There must be no lack of machetes or files. (the
crowd shouts) British files. Smaller files. Better ones. Grinding stones.
(From now on until the end of the speech the crowd talks all at once
between each of Castro's sentences). What? Oriente does not like the curved
machete. Who likes the mocha? The machete? I sincerely believe that each
person should cut, next year I shall test one of those machetes and mochas.
(laughter?) A curved one. What do you like in Matanzas? (crowd: Curved
ones) Curved ones? Good. I believe that each province should have the
machete which best suits it, but study this carefully, because I see that
so many different views may be somewhat subjective, and that a little
custom and tradition is involved.

It would be better to be able to reconcile various types of machete, mocha,
or whatever, to see which one gives the best yield. (More opinions emerge
from the crowd) Good. Yes? (Man in the crowd says something) No, do not
worry about this not appearing in the papers. (Few words indistinct) Yes,
yes. Good, if not the 64,000. What? 50,000, raise hands. Is it a matter of
an award to raise your hands? (Man in background says he got an award, but
is not part of a brigade) Individual cutting and loading (man says yes) and
what did you win? (Man says a refrigerator) Good. Has it arrived? (reply)
No. Electricity? (reply) Well, that is fine. Do you want an interview this
year? (reply) I shall call you and we shall have an interview all the time
you want. I cannot say this to everyone because (incomplete sentence). What
is your name? (Elaldio Padin--phonetic) What farm? Write that down. (Castro
is presumably speaking to someone behind him) What farm? (Elaldio Padin
Guines--phonetic) farm. An estate? (Catin--phonetic) Estate. (Others in
crowed want an interview).

What was your award? (reply) What is your name? (reply) There can only be
two more interviews, otherwise (words indistinct). What is your name?
Heriberto Aldana. What farm? (Roel Hernanda Silva-phonetic). (Someone
begins to speak to Fidel) I do not believe that. That is not right. The
administrator is incorrectly applying the norms. (It appears that one man
is complaining to Castro of a situation he does not like and tells him what
farm is involved. He is talking about two norms which have been
established.) Where does that situation exist? In (Cutiado--phonetic).
(Ursinio--phonetic) tells me that they will take up these cases with the
INRA norms committee. If they want to establish two norms, let them. A man
who does the work of two earns for two. (applause) Of course. That is
right. You are correct, of course, of course. The norms are adjusted and
readjusted, is that so? Well, Comrades, we shall not go on talking,
otherwise we will not be able to (word indistinct) the next harvest here.
They said that dinner is waiting where you are being lodged, and I am told
the coffee is very good there. (few words indistinct) That is what I was
told. Congratulations, Comrades. Fatherland or Death, We Shall Win. (said
very hurriedly--ed.)