Week in Review
The American left loves Cuba. A communist/socialist regime just a short boat ride from Florida. Where they put people before profits. And the left likes people. Just as much as they hate profits. And best of all Cuba has a national health care system. American film maker and darling of the left Michael Moore even made a movie about how great that health care system is. Sicko. Which showed how there are no health insurance companies in Cuba. No. Just a government that loves its people. A large number of who for some reason risk their lives to float their way to Florida. To escape that beautiful paradise Moore rhapsodizes about but never chooses to live in. Which probably has something to do with this (see Cuba slashes more than 100,000 health care jobs by The Associated Press posted 4/7/2014 on the Star-Telegram).
Cuban authorities say they have eliminated more than 100,000 jobs in health care, considered one of the pillars of the 1959 revolution.
The cuts come as President Raul Castro tries to streamline government as part of a broader economic reform package.
The weekly labor newspaper Trabajadores said Monday that 109,000 health care positions have been cut…
Cuba’s health care sector is entirely run by the state. Authorities have said that like other areas of the economy it is plagued by inefficiency, redundancies and bloated payrolls.
This is what Michael Moore and others on the left want for America. A health care system plagued by inefficiency, redundancies and bloated payrolls. Which, of course, consumes so many of the limited health care resources that there is little left for patients. This is national health care. This is a government bureaucracy doing what it does best. Incompetence and corruption. And the left is fine with this as long as they get their hands on those health care dollars. So they can create a vast, inefficient bureaucracy that is full of high-paying jobs to consume those health care dollars. Allowing anyone working for the national health care service to get rich. Just like those health insurance companies the left so hates. Only without being able to do what the private health insurance companies have been able to do. Create the world’s best health care system.
For the American people aren’t risking their lives to float to Cuba to get that health insurance-free national health care. At least, not yet. But with further economic reform President Castro may end up one day with a privatized health care system as the Americans move in the other direction. Which could very well create a health tourism paradise in Cuba after all. For Americans wishing to escape what President Obama and the Democrats are doing to the health care system they liked and wanted to keep.
Tags: American Left, bloated payrolls, bureaucracy, Castro, Communist, Cuba, economic reform, health insurance, inefficiency, Michael Moore, National health care, President Raul Castro, Raul Castro, redundancies, socialist
Week in Review
Cuba’s National Assembly is meeting to discuss Raul Castro’s economic reforms. And people within and without Cuba are watching anxiously. To see if Cuba will throw off their socialist/communist shackles. So the Cuban people can breathe liberty and enjoy prosperity. Where all Cubans can live the good life. Not just the inner party members (see Cuban parliament meets on Raul Castro’s economic reforms, budget, tax system by Peter Orsi, Associated Press, posted 7/23/2012 on The Washington Post).
Islanders and Cuba-watchers will be seeing if the assembly takes any action on long-promised measures such as the easing of travel restrictions, increased private farming of state-controlled land or the approval of cooperative businesses…
And last week the island’s burgeoning small business class was dealt a blow with the low-key announcement of new, stiff tariffs on imported goods.
The entrepreneurs say that without access to wholesale markets, the only way they can supply their businesses is through “mules” who transit between Cuba and places such as Miami, Ecuador and Panama with their bags stuffed with food, spices, clothing, electronics, diapers and other items tough to come by on the island…
It made no mention of the small businesses, however, and insisted that the measures were necessary because excess baggage is slowing down service at the airport, making it resemble a cargo terminal.
By 2015, Cuban officials are gunning to have removed 1 million workers from bloated state employment rolls and have transferred more than 40 percent of the economy into private hands, compared with about 15 percent today.
Import tariffs don’t protect domestic business. They hurt domestic business. By raising their costs. Which forces businesses to raise their prices. Which hurts their sales because people buy less when prices are high. So they find ways around paying those high tariffs. So they can keep their prices low so people can afford to buy their wares. And the Cuban small business owners turn to “mules” to bring in what the command economy of Cuba can’t. Goods at free market prices.
The command economy of socialism/communism doesn’t work. Free market capitalism works. Free trade works. As proven by the Cuban black market. People were jamming their bags so much with the goods that are in demand that it was turning the airport into a “cargo terminal.” The government may not know how to supply businesses in a free market. But entrepreneurs do. And the Cubans are ready, willing and able to advance Cuba into the 21st century. All they need is for the government to let them.
The Obama administration could take a lesson from the Cubans. In what works. And what doesn’t work. The Cubans are trying to move towards free market capitalism. While President Obama is moving America in the other direction. The Cubans want less government in their economy. Because it clearly doesn’t work. And they have the scars (economic and physical) to prove it. While the Obama administration is trying to put more government into the economy despite this not working anywhere it has ever been tried. Even our one-time Cold War nemesis is admitting this. And when they do perhaps it’s time for our president to do likewise.
Tags: capitalism, command economy, Communism, Cuba, Cuban people, entrepreneurs, free market, free-market capitalism, prices, small business, socialism, tariffs
Week in Review
The 2012 election is still about 5 months away. But President Obama has received another endorsement. In an interview with CNN’s Christiane Amanpour the daughter of Cuba’s communist dictator said President Obama is her kind of leader (see Obama wins endorsement from Raul Castro’s daughter by the CNN Wire Staff posted 6/4/2012 on CNN).
The daughter of Cuba’s president supports the re-election bid of U.S. President Barack Obama, but believes he could do more were it not for the pressures he is facing, she said in an interview broadcast Monday on “CNNi’s Amanpour.”
“As a citizen of the world, I would like him to win,” said Mariela Castro Espin, daughter of Raul Castro, in the exclusive interview, which was conducted Friday in New York. “Given the choices, I prefer Obama…”
Amanpour pointed to a Human Rights Watch description of Cuba as “the only country in Latin America that represses virtually all forms of political dissent.”
But Castro said the rights group “does not represent the opinion of the Cuban people. And their informants are mercenaries. They’re people who have been paid by a foreign government for media shows that do not represent Cuban positions directly…”
Castro offered no sympathy for Yoani Sanchez, the dissident blogger inside Cuba who has won multiple awards for her work, which is critical of the Castro government.
“She gives service to foreign powers who are interested in eliminating the Cuban experience,” Castro said. “She’s an official voice of the global dominant powers.
Castro disputed Sanchez’s assertion that she was not allowed to work. “She is allowed to work in Cuba,” Castro said. “But she makes much more money with the prizes, which are being sent to her from abroad, than for any work that she might do with the very low wages that we have in Cuba…”
Asked about Sen. Robert Menendez’s description of her as “a vocal advocate of the regime, an opponent of democracy, who has defended the brutal repression of democracy activists,” Castro called the Democrat from New Jersey “a person who really doesn’t have his feet down on the ground.”
Just in case you’re not sure Raul Castro is Fidel Castro’s brother. When Fidel suffered some health issues he handed the dictatorship over to his brother. Because he could. Much like Kim Jong-Il handed his dictatorship off to his son, Kim Jong-un. Because he could. When you have absolute power over life and death of your people you can play by any set of rules you choose. And Fidel Castro has chosen to continue their oppressive communist police state. For those who didn’t escape across the water to Florida, that is. This is Cuba. Where the Cuban masses suffer under the Castro dictatorship. Something Mariela Castro Espin apparently supports. Saying the Castro will is the people’s will. Those Cubans trying to make it to Florida on watercraft than can barely float, though, beg to differ.
And this champion of oppressive communist police states endorses President Obama in the 2012 election. As I’m sure the Castro brothers do. As well as Hugo Chavez in Venezuela. And if he was still alive, Mao Zedong. And the man that exported this oppressive Stalinism himself. Joseph Stalin. So it would appear that President Obama impresses the anti-capitalism bloc. For they must feel that he hates capitalism as much as they do. And they would love to see how much more he can hate it with 4 more years.
Tags: 2012 election, Castro, Castro dictatorship, Communist, Cuba, Cuban, Cuban people, dictatorship, Fidel Castro, oppressive communist police state, police state, President Obama, Raul Castro, Stalin
Week in Review
Change is coming to Cuba. A good kind of change. They’re making a move from communism towards capitalism. A move no doubt that will sadden a great number of beloved Hollywood actors (see Yes, they’re abierto: Cubans open their doors to small business by Ken Ellingwood posted 4/5/2012 on the Los Angeles Times).
Since President Raul Castro loosened the island’s commerce rules to energize the economy, Cubans all over are pondering how to get in on the wave…
The reform, announced in late 2010, is fast taking root around Havana’s weather-worn downtown and in other cities and towns, prompting Cubans all over to ponder how to get in on the wave…
The sudden wave of entrepreneurship has brought with it shades of cutthroat capitalism.
Garcia said a rival nail shop across the street was undercutting her price for a manicure, $1. But she planned to hold tight…
One vendor said he quit a decent-paying government job last year to strike out on his own, getting a license to sell hardware at the entrance to his home. His “store” is basically a chest heaped with light fixtures, electrical cables, fittings, valves and pieces of rubber hose.
The budding businessman, who declined to give his name, said his earnings of up to $20 a day top his old salary, despite the permit fee and the ups and downs of a merchant’s life…
The reform has boosted the number of small enterprises in Cuba to more than 350,000 since the government of President Raul Castro moved to coax more out of Cuba’s economy and ease the load on the treasury by shaving the bloated public payroll.
Very interesting. More capitalism is revitalizing weather-worn downtown areas. And it’s already lowering consumer prices. And these stores? Imagine that. You can’t do that in America. For you need permits and inspections. You need the fire marshal to approve of your egress lighting and egress paths. All of which costs. Which is why his $20 daily earnings can exceed his government wages. And perhaps the most interesting of all is the shrinking of the public sector.
My god, can it be? Is Cuba on a more capitalistic path than America. Yes, it can be. First the Berlin Wall falls. Then the Soviet Union. Now Cuba. What will be next? But more importantly, how will this affect Ed Asner? The actor who played the beloved character Lou Grant on the Mary Tyler Show? Whose leftist socialist activism stopped few from still finding a soft spot in their heart for Lou Grant. Our favorite curmudgeon. Even though he loves Cuba. And hates capitalism. So how will the news of his socialist Cuba going capitalist affect him? To have Cuba admit that the policies that Asner supported and believed in were wrong? Will it change his mind? Probably not. He’ll probably just say that Raul is betraying his brother Fidel. And then he’ll try to find a ‘Ted Baxter’ to yell at.
Tags: capitalism, capitalist, Castro, Communism, Cuba, Cubans, Ed Asner, Havana, Lou Grant, public sector, Raul Castro, socialist
Week in Review
Hugo Chavez is remaking Venezuela into to a socialist paradise. Where everyone is equal. And one of the tenants of a socialist paradise is national health care. Where they put people before profits. And give everyone access to the same quality health care. Unless you’re the president and have suffered a relapse of cancer (see Venezuela’s Chavez confirms cancer recurrence by Andrew Cawthorne and Eyanir Chinea posted 3/4/2012 on Reuters).
“I will live! I will overcome!” the 57-year-old socialist leader said in a televised meeting with some cabinet colleagues from Cuba, where he underwent an operation six days ago for a recurrence of the cancer that first struck him last year.
Chavez also lambasted Venezuela’s opposition as “bourgeoisie” intent on dismantling his welfare policies for the poor, spoke of an increasingly fervent Catholic faith and – as always – broke into verse at several points…
Chavez, a close friend of former Cuban president Fidel Castro, prefers treatment in Havana because he is guaranteed discreet treatment and a lower possibility of media leaks.
Yeah, right. Discreet treatment. If the choice was between quality care and discreet treatment what would you pick? Quality care. Because you’d want to live, right? So the quality of Cuban health care must be better than the quality of Venezuelan health care. Or Chavez simply chose discreet treatment over higher odds of survival. Which I doubt. No. He went to Cuba because he wanted to live. And the health care in his socialist paradise, that’s good enough for his people, simply wasn’t good enough for him. Which is socialism in a nutshell. Where all of the people are equal. Only some of the people are more equal than others.
Tags: Chavez, Cuba, discreet treatment, Hugo Chavez, National health care, relapse of cancer, socialism, socialist paradise, Venezuela