Fidel Castro: Out of Gas

Monday, December 5, AD 2016

 

The Babalu Blog. the go-to blog on all news Cuban, gives us this tidbit on the funeral of Castro:

 

The photo below taken in Cuba shows soldiers having to push the vehicle carrying the cremated remains of dictator Fidel Castro throughout Cuba. Rumor has it that the jeep pulling the ashes of the deceased despot on the planned parade route where Cubans were ordered by State Security to line up and mourn openly for the cameras or risk arrest ran out of gas. How fitting.

It would be hard to think of a more appropriate image to mark the end of Fidel Castro’s half-century of utter failures and misery in Cuba.

jeep-carrying-fidels-ashes-runs-out-of-gas

 

Que Lastima.  Never fear Fidel, I am sure that Satan, like all dictators, makes transportation run on time in his domain!

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6 Responses to Fidel Castro: Out of Gas

Fidel Castro and the Grim Reaper

Friday, December 2, AD 2016

 

Paul Kengor at Catholic World Report asks an interesting question:  how many people did dead Communist dictator Fidel Castro kill?

 

So, for starters how many people were killed by Fidel and his communist dystopia?

Unfortunately, no one truly knows, akin to how no one knows how many poor souls he tossed into his jails, from political dissidents to priests to homosexuals. Fidel’s prison-state has never permitted human-rights observers, reminiscent of how he never permitted the elections he repeatedly promised in the 1950s. That said, many sources have tried to pin down numbers and have generated some common estimates:

“The Black Book of Communism,” the seminal Harvard University Press work, which specialized in trying to get accurate data on the enormous volume of deaths produced by communist tyrants, states that in the 1960s alone, when Fidel and his brother Raul (Cuba’s current leader) established their complete control, with the help of their murdering buddy Che Guevara, an estimated 30,000 people were arrested in Cuba for political reasons and 7,000 to 10,000 were believed to have been executed. Even then, that was merely the start.

From the late 1950s to the late 1990s, it’s estimated that Castro killed between 15,000 to 18,000 people, whether victims of long-term imprisonment or outright execution by bullets.

That is a lot of people for a small island. And it isn’t all.

Cuba is a surreal island of no boats, where boats are banned—because people with boats flee. Thus, untold numbers of citizens have attempted the treacherous nearly 100-mile swim to Florida in shark-infested waters. An estimated 100,000 have risked the journey. Of those, perhaps as many as 30,000 to 40,000 died from drowning. As they bob for breath, the Castro government sends military helicopters to drop large bags of sand on them from high above.

Yes, actually drop sandbags on them.

So, Fidel Castro is responsible for a lot of death.

But here, too, these numbers do not capture the level of Fidel’s brutal madness. Consider the actual millions he badly wanted to kill, especially here in America.

If Fidel Castro had his way in October 1962, the United States would have been leveled by atomic bombs and so would little Cuba, which would’ve ceased to exist. The fact is that Fidel recommended to Nikita Khrushchev that Cuba and the USSR together launch an all-out nuclear attack upon the United States, literally igniting Armageddon.

This is no secret. Castro admitted it. In an open forum discussing the Cuban Missile Crisis 30 years later, Castro told Robert McNamara, JFK’s secretary of defense: “Bob, I did recommend they [the nuclear missiles] were to be used.”

In total, said McNamara, there were 162 Soviet missiles on the island. The firing of those missiles alone would have led to (according to McNamara) at least 80 million dead Americans, which would have been half the population, plus added tens of millions of casualties.

That, however, is a conservative estimate, given that 162 missiles was far the sum total that would have been subsequently launched. The United States in turn would have launched on Cuba, and also on the USSR. President Kennedy made that commitment clear in his nationally televised speech on October 22, 1962: “It shall be the policy of this nation to regard any nuclear missile launched from Cuba against any nation in the Western Hemisphere as an attack by the Soviet Union on the United States, requiring a full retaliatory response upon the Soviet Union.” In response, of course, the Soviets would have automatically launched on America from Soviet soil. Even then, the fireworks would just be starting: Under the terms of their NATO and Warsaw Pact charters, the territories of Western and Eastern Europe would also erupt.

Once the smoke cleared, hundreds of millions to possibly over a billion people could have perished, with Western civilization in its death throes. If Fidel Castro had gotten his way, he would have precipitated the greatest slaughter in human history. (Che Guevara also wanted to launch the nukes.)

The Soviets were horrified. Their ambassador to Cuba, Alexander Alekseyev, was so stunned at what Castro told him that he stood frozen, speechless, crushed. Without waiting for an answer from the numb ambassador, Castro started writing his feelings on paper, which Alekseyev saw as a kind of “last testament, a farewell.”

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13 Responses to Fidel Castro and the Grim Reaper

  • No boats–they might flee?

    How do you say “Vopo” in Spanish?

  • Most of the left-of-center back in the day had no interest in Castro or were explicitly antagonistic. An odd exception was George McGovern, always the ingenue. McGovern and Robert Kastenmeier aside, the leftists who admired Castro had hardly any place in electoral politics other than a few cretins like John Conyers, among whom it’s a supply-side phenomenon only. The nexus of opinion journalists employed by The Nation, The Village Voice, Mother Jones &c were in the business of offering briefs for Castro. The best sense I could ever make of that wretched crew is that they fancied themselves Special by virtue of their affinity for perverse and vicious stances.

  • Communists are murderers. So are atheists. And witness today’s Democrats – nigh unto 60 million babies murdered. Really, what more need one say?

  • Mystifying part of all this about Cuba and Castro is that it sits 90 miles from the US and not much further from continental South America and yet so many in various countries have a benign view of the man and the misery he has caused. Oddly, he never made a secret about what he was doing but the same people who prattle on about human rights not only give him a pass but are lavish in his praise. I guess it is true that there are none so blind as those who will not see.

  • Americans who praised Fidel Castro are and have been a special brand of stupid. There is no better way to desribe that legion of brain dead slugs.
    In Latin America, the meme “damn Yanqui” goes way back. If I give examples, there will undoubtedly ensue an argument with Art Deco and i have no time for that. It can be summed up in John David Crow’s book The Epic of Latin America. Castro told the US to shove it and got away with it.
    Therefore, leftists throughout Latin America, be they atheist or Catholic, praised Castro. Human rights have meant little in Latin America to the hard core left or right. Therefore, Castro’s human rights abuses meant nothing to the Left. Of course, the Left howls over Pinochet and the Argenine dictatorship, but has been silent when it comes to the Sendero Luminoso and the FARC.
    Piere Trudeau was part of a Liberal Party that helped to destroy a vibrant Catholic culture in Quebec and lunged at the opportunity to be amigos with Castro. Given the anti American feeling among certain left wing Canadians past and present, they didn’t care about Castro’s human rights abuses, either. Trudeau wanted to be a pest to the US and in this case he succeeded.
    The Cuban exiles have never been a popular bunch in the US. They started coming to Florida when Batista was running the show and we know the rest. America has taken in immigrants but it has rarely been a popular exercise. No irish need apply, Polacks are stupid, the Pope wants to rule the US, etc. PBS did an hour long hit piece on the Miami Cubans back in 2000 or 2001 that would never have been done about the Muslims or Mexicans or Indians with H1B visas. Nor, for that matter, the legions of New Yorkers who have made Miami a sixth borough of NYC and brought their politics with them.

    Right now the US has bigger problems than who runs Cuba. However, the impending death of Raul Castro will present Trump with an opportunity. Blockade the island and demand that they hand over the escaped felons there or else.

  • I once met a woman, the wife of an acquaintance, who seemed a nice person in her late 40’s. She then proceeded to tell of her admiration for Fidel. Everyone present was embarrassed, including her husband. She was dead two years later from early-onset Alzheimer’s’.

    I’ve never met anyone else with a good excuse.

  • What’s the Pope’s excuse?

  • Just a minor side note for those thinking of Cuba as the next adventure tour destination. Some years ago my wife (on a Thai passport) went to Cuba and brought back a bottle of their famous Havana Club Rum. It was easy to see why the Cuba Libre was invented; it was to disguise the taste of the Rum which can also double as varnish remover. Point is, Cuba has little to offer and won’t for a long time as the economy and business environment was almost completely destroyed by a half century of Castroism. Vietnam has a stronger economy than Cuba and it was in a shooting war for over twenty years with the French and Americans.

  • “Woe to those who call evil good and good evil, who put darkness for light and light for darkness, who put bitter for sweet and sweet for bitter.” I cannot understand how anyone would want to wear a tee shirt with Che’s face on it or praise Castro.

  • Our Republican legislators at the federal level were all for normalizing relations with Cuba–following the lead of the establishment Republicans in DC. My US Congressman, if memory serves me correctly, was the one who absolutely raved about how much our Arkansas farmers would profit from the opening of a new foreign market to their farm produce. I was not impressed by his argument.

  • From a Cuban born friend – http://www.faithwire.com/2016/11/28/heres-a-handy-list-of-atrocities-for-everyone-glorifying-fidel-castro-today/
    Castro regime death toll about 100,000 Cubans. 500,000 passed through his prisons and forced labor camps.
    A vibrant economy destroyed. A virtual prison island. High suicide rate.
    Fidel Castro – a vile man.

  • It appears that Trump is on board with keeping Gitmo open. Years ago my husband deployed there for 6 weeks and I had a week there on a command inspection team. It’s not an attractive part of Cuba; the standard of living for personnel there is not the same as CONUS, but it’s like Club Med for the cave dwellers jihadists interned there. The US should NEVER give up Guantanamo Bay.

  • We also read recently that the Communist Castro enriched himself to the tune of 900 million dollars during the nearly six decades of his dictatorship. To each according to his grasp-abilities and from each regardless of their needs. What doth it profit a man to gain the world but lose his soul?

Justin Trudeau and Fidel Castro

Tuesday, November 29, AD 2016

One source of consolation for all Americans is that Justin Trudeau, that source of hope for airheads everywhere, who hearted Castro after he assumed room temperature, is Canada’s problem not ours.  John Fund at National Review Online gives us the details:

Then there was Canadian prime minister Justin Trudeau. The 46-year-old leader fondly recalled that his father, Pierre, when he was prime minister, had frequently visited with Castro. The younger Trudeau lauded Castro for supposed advances in health care, education, and literacy and described him as “a larger than life leader who served his people for almost half a century.” He confesses that he felt “deep sorrow” at Castro’s death, adding, “While a controversial figure, both Mr. Castro’s supporters and detractors recognized his tremendous dedication and love for the Cuban people who had a deep and lasting affection for ‘el Comandante.’”

Such willful blindness spurred other Twitter users to launch the tag #trudeaueulogies to mock the clueless Canadian leader. “While controversial, Darth Vader achieved great heights in space construction & played a formative role in his son’s life,” quipped Jason Markusoff, a correspondent for Canada’s Maclean’s magazine. Canadian sports commentator Mike Hogan added: “Today we mourn the loss of Norman Bates, a family man who was truly defined by his devotion to his mother.” Australian news columnist Rita Panahi wrote, “Although flawed, Hitler was a vegetarian who loved animals, was a contributor to the arts & proud advocate for Germany.”

Trudeau’s comments infuriated Ileana Ros-Lehtinen, the former chair of the House Foreign Relations Committee. Ros-Lehtinen had to flee Cuba as a small child with her family after Castro’s takeover. Speaking on CNN, she directly addressed Trudeau: I’ve been reading his sickening love letter to dead Fidel Castro and I’m thinking, ‘Sure, you did not lose a loved one to an execution squad. You did not lose a loved one to the gulags in Cuba. . . . The only thing that Fidel has been successful in has not been health or education, or human rights or democracy, it’s been holding on to power — which is easy to do when you don’t have elections.

The debate over Castro will rage on, but arguments over him should take account of how unusual a dictator he was. My colleague Andrew Stuttaford has noted at NRO that during the Cuban Missile Crisis of 1962, Castro wanted to start a nuclear war. He urged Soviet leader Nikita Khrushchev to launch a first strike against the United States. In a letter, Khrushchev felt compelled to talk his ally off the ledge thusly: Cuba would have burned in the fires of war. . . . We struggle against imperialism, not in order to die, but to draw on all of our potential, to lose as little as possible, and later to win more, so as to be a victor and make Communism triumph.

Lastly, for all of Castro’s ranting about the exploitive nature of capitalism, it takes a truly mercenary mind to come up with the schemes his regime employed to garner hard currency — from drug-running, to assassinations to, well, vampiric behavior. The Inter-American Commission on Human Rights reported in 1966 that 166 Cuban prisoners were executed on a single day in May of that year. But before they were killed, they were forced to undergo the forced extraction of an average of seven pints of blood from their bodies. This blood was sold to Communist Vietnam at a rate of $50 per pint. Those who underwent the bloodletting suffered cerebral anemia and a state of unconsciousness and paralysis. But that didn’t stop the executions; the victims were carried on a stretcher to the killing field where they were then shot.

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8 Responses to Justin Trudeau and Fidel Castro

  • It’s peculiar how the very same people who are in hysterics over Trump’s
    election are simultaneously eulogizing Castro, painting him as a hero. On
    the one hand, they breathlessly tell anyone who’ll listen that Trump is
    determined to take away our civil liberties, criminalize homosexuality,
    and shut down freedom of speech. On the other hand, they wax nostalgic
    over an actual tyrant who did, in fact, do all of those things…

  • Canada is all to far from God, and all to close to their own frivolity, hence Justin Trudeau, whose name is a punchline. After the American electorate put a sometime lawyer / sometime academic who had little or no professional accomplishment in the White House, Canada elected to put a lapsed drama teacher / serial grad school dropout in the Prime Minister’s chair. Defenders of the Canadian body politic will assure you that Trudeau signs what’s put in front of him and leaves the rough stuff for cabinet ministers who know what they’re doing. The best you could say is that he doesn’t seem to carry around the spite that our Alinsky acolyte in chief does.

    Was that cartoon an original Watterson?

    Paul Hollandar and Thomas Sowell have dissected the Dictator Crushes (and the historical fictions which attend them, of which J. Haggerty gave us a double dose). They do not arise from any decent impulse.

  • “Was that cartoon an original Watterson?”

    Not sure Art. It has been floating around the internet for years.

  • The cartoon is original, but not the dialogue. It was a section toward the end of the strip where his babysitter takes up the offer to learn Calvinball.

  • The quote is from Dune. Herbert was quoting some 19th century Frenchman whose name I cannot recall at the moment, alas.

  • I don’t think Calvin ever got the better of the babysitter.

  • The babysitter was the only source of fear for Calvin.

  • The comic is from here:
    http://calvinanddune.tumblr.com/
    .
    The closest Calvin ever got to besting his sitter was when he convinced her to play Calvinball (from which those panels are taken). But she won fair and square so he went to bed in probably their most amicable adventure ever.
    .
    I sometimes wish we got to see future Sitter in the Hobbes & Bacon strips.

Fidel Castro Dies

Saturday, November 26, AD 2016

 

Fidel Castro, who turned his island homeland into a vast prison of which he was the Warden, died yesterday at age 90.  My usual rule after someone dies is De mortuis nil nisi bonum, but I can think of nothing good about the life of Castro other than it now has ended.  Under his regime millions of his countrymen risked death at sea rather than submit to his rule, and I can think of no more damning indictment for any ruler.  A squalid dictator of the worst sort, Castro always received good press in some of the media in the West from leftists who were willing to forgive any sin if the proper Communist platitudes were spoken.  Castro leaves behind him a broken nation of slaves.  May they soon rise up and bring a new day to a free Cuba.

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49 Responses to Fidel Castro Dies

  • 2016 has been the year of impossibilities:
    England leaves the EU
    Bob Dylan wins the Nobel Prize for literature
    The Chicago Cubs win the world series
    Donald Trump is elected President
    and now Fidel Castro’s unnatural long life has finally expired.

    I expect gene scientists to announce that they have produced a new strand of winged swine by Christmas.

  • It has been a year when the improbable is probable Bob!

  • Unless I am mistaken, isn’t the name “Fidel Castro” descended from the Latin “Fides Castrum” for “Faith Castle”? If so, then how ironic.
    .
    “…statutum est hominibus semel mori post hoc autem iudicium…”
    .
    “…it is appointed for men to die once, and after that comes judgment…”
    .
    Hebrews 9:27

  • Pope to honor him? After all, he’s more Catholic than most Catholics, he’s communist.
    Obama could rename Mt. Hood to Mt. Castro…as a sign of honor of course…

  • @ Bob Tanaka

    What?
    You didn’t get the memo!
    Hillary Clinton is the prototype…a flying swine, most appealing to the so-called tolerant left.
    Pork belly futures on the ascent.
    Reindeer futures look gloomy.

  • Everybody makes the world a better place.
    .
    Some by living.
    .
    Some by dying.

  • No Marxist me, but I would not call Castro a squalid dictator.
    A benign dictator with many personal faults including vanity.
    Cuba survived for years in spite of the US sugar embargo which created child poverty.
    Cuba had a lower infant mortality rate than the USA.
    Cuba sent more doctors to Africa during the ebola crisis than the USA.
    More young women, proportionally, study medicine in Cuba than the USA.
    The USA backed many squalid Latin American dictatorships where street children are routinely slaughtered by government-backed death squads.
    These countries are ruled by rich oligarchs and privileged families.
    The USA grants aid to underdevloped countries as long as they privatise health and welfare.
    Batista, the dictator before Castro, was financed by US money and people lived in squalor and poverty.
    I am a traditionalist Catholic but I support liberation theology too.

  • The USA sent its military to every continent on Earth..ostensibly to support freedom, but left Castro in Cuba because Kennedy backed down to Khruschev.
    Castro not only turned Cuba I no the tropical gulag, he supported, directly and indirectly, just about every left wing insurgency in Latin America. The Colombian ELN and Chavez’ mess in Venezuela can be laid at his feet. Most disgusting is the praise heaped on Castro by Canadian prime twit Justin Trudeau. Canadian support of Castro is something I have long found nauseating.
    Slightly less nauseating have been the papal visits to Havana. They did nothing to ease repression of the Church in Cuba.
    Raul needs to go before Cuba changes.

  • To Penguin Fan:
    Castro’s Cuba had many faults and some unpleasant aspects. But so have certain US cities such as Baltimore, especially if you are black.
    Batista’s Cuba was a great deal worse. The Church was tolerated as long as it did not speak out on social issues such as children living in filth and slum conditions.
    Oliver Stone said Castro answered every question that was put to him, and did not ask to see the filmed interviews before the film crew left Havana.
    Watch a DVD on Noam Chomsky, Manufacturing Consent, to see what the US got up to in Latin America.
    I love and admire the USA, but a true patriot must expose injustice, lies and double standards.

  • “No Marxist me, but I would not call Castro a squalid dictator.”

    Agreed. Murderous dictator would be more apt.

    “Cuba survived for years in spite of the US sugar embargo which created child poverty”

    Actually Cuba’s communism made it a poor nation. It was always able to trade with most of the world and used the US embargo as an excuse for its abysmal economic performance.

    “Cuba had a lower infant mortality rate than the USA.”
    http://freebeacon.com/issues/cuba-manipulating-health-care-statistics/

    “The USA backed many squalid Latin American dictatorships where street children are routinely slaughtered by government-backed death squads.”

    Unlike Cuba the US has been a force for democracy and free elections throughout Latin America. Castro wanted to make clones of his police state throughout South and Central America.

    “These countries are ruled by rich oligarchs and privileged families.”

    The most unequal country in the world in the Western Hemisphere is the Nomenklatura of the Cuban Communist party compared to the rest of the Cuban people.

    http://canadafreepress.com/article/cubas-stalinist-nomenklatura-celebrates-50-years-of-high-living-and-represshttp://freebeacon.com/issues/cuba-manipulating-health-care-statistics/

    http://www.nationalreview.com/article/432680/myth-cuban-health-care

    “More young women, proportionally, study medicine in Cuba than the USA.”

    Considering the state of medicine in Cuba, the vast majority of their “doctors” would not even qualify to be medics in this country.

    “The USA grants aid to underdevloped countries as long as they privatise health and welfare.”

    Would that we had such a requirement. Alas we do not.

    “Batista, the dictator before Castro, was financed by US money and people lived in squalor and poverty.”

    Batista originally had the support of the Cuban Communist Party. Cubans had a higher standard of living under Batista than under Castro:

    http://business.financialpost.com/fp-comment/how-cuba-was-destroyed

    “I am a traditionalist Catholic but I support liberation theology too.”

    I never would have guessed. Marxism is a form of State slavery. The main secular forces that have liberated people around the globe are democratic governments and free markets.

  • Mr. Hagerty, you can stop wasting your time singing the praises of Castro to me. Go tell it on Calle Ocho in Little Havana. St. John Paul II lambasted liberation theology, seeing it for what it is, a KGB inspired attempt to split apart the Latin American Church.
    I am sure the Versailles clientele on Calle Ocho is anxiously awaiting the eulogy of Castro. Justin Trudeau, the dunce PM of Canada, can deliver it.

  • haggerty: “I am a traditionalist Catholic but I support liberation theology too.”

    You are confused.

  • Democratic governments and free markets?
    Donald, in the US you do not even have a free press or free media.
    Vidal and Chomsky did a 30 minute discussion criticizing the Gulf War. Not a single TV station would air it. Your TV stations are terrified of dissent and so they end by ‘manufacturing consent’.
    Chomsky was speaking at Harvard. The young neo-cons, bless them, tore down all the fliers. The Boston papers did not even report that Chomsky was speaking. Yet he still draws crowds of over 2000 by word of mouth alone.
    Father Daniel Berrigan made some nuanced criticisms of Israel years and years ago – he was dropped by The New York Times and TV as a spokesperson.
    Pope John Paul was almost reluctant to recognize Helda Camara’s martyrdom.
    It’s OK for bishops to be political as long as they do it in Marxist regimes.
    William Colby in his fascinating autobiography Honorable Men discloses the exact sum (running into millions of dollars) allotted by the Nixon administration to destabilise Chile’s democratically elected government. This led to the truly sociopathic regime of Allende and the systematic slaughter of thousands of Chilean democrats. They rounded up the first of them and shot them in the football stadium in Santiago. The Nazis couldn’t have done a better day’s work.
    Milton Friedman earned big bucks as economic adviser to Allende and his junta.
    Castro, if not already Marxist, became a committed Marxist after the US declared him a ‘criminal’ and launched their very nasty embargo. JFK and Bobby were obsessed by Cuba and we all watched the black comedy of the Bay of Pigs.
    As for Fidel and Che fomenting revolution in Latin America, no wonder. The solution to Latin America’s gigantic problems could have been addressed by social democratic governance, but the US does not like social democracy, it demands that you do democracy its way or else.
    No worries, we had the CIA paying local thugs to hunt down and kill, sorry ‘take out’ as you Americans say, Che. In doing so they made him an icon for young radicals all over the world.
    Cubans had a higher standard of living under Batista? American big business created wealth for its client class only. Gambling, decadent night life, prostitution, child sex abuse, playboy culture, extremes of wealth and poverty? Yes, Senor Batista, God’s good democrat.
    I don’t need you to tell me about communism. I have stacks of back issues of Encounter magazine which I read during the Cold War years as well as histories of the Baltic states and what the Soviets did there.
    But fifty years of stupidity, ruthlessness and lies from US administrations has been no consolation for the nightmare of communism.
    Wait till the awful bloody mess (two years from now) when ‘Trumpgate’ is on every disillusioned American’s lips. Wait till the city riots begin.
    P.S. Save the Children NGOS were very impressed by the skill, expertise and commitment of Chilean doctors in the hell of the ebola crisis.
    I know someone who was there, Donald.

  • Sorry, I meant to say that Save the Children staff were impressed by the skill of young CUBAN doctors who worked tirelessly in Africa during the ebola crisis. For very little money and at great risk to themselves.

  • I stopped reading Haggerty’s comment at his laud of that commie anarchist Chomsky. Would that Chomsky follows Castro and the sooner the better. More freaking failed European crap over which I shouldn’t raise my blood pressure.

  • A second error. I mentioned Helder Camara when I meant to say Oscar Romero. Two great men who comforted the afflicted and afflicted the comfortable as the Lord Jesus Christ taught us.
    Lucius, I honestly do not enjoy making you angry. I am off to read my beloved Hilaire Belloc who does not, I hope, qualify as ‘European crap’.
    Hilaire met four Popes or was it five? He admired Pope Pius X at whose school I was educated in the principles of Catholic truth.

  • I love and admire the USA, but a true patriot must expose injustice, lies and double standards.

    Funny how those who claim to love an admire the USA soon demonstrate themselves as incapable of acknowledging anything positive about it. Well if we’re exposing double standards…

    P.S. Save the Children NGOS were very impressed by the skill, expertise and commitment of Chilean doctors in the hell of the ebola crisis.
    I know someone who was there, Donald.

    Funny, both of my parents work in the health care field, one has gone on several mission trips (with other health care professionals I’ll add) and… well the most charitable interpretation of their impression of Cuban doctors is the exact opposite. But by all means, go get treated by one. I’m interested in seeing how the medical tourism shakes out in a few years.

  • “Donald, in the US you do not even have a free press or free media.
    Vidal and Chomsky did a 30 minute discussion criticizing the Gulf War. Not a single TV station would air it. Your TV stations are terrified of dissent and so they end by ‘manufacturing consent’.”

    You don’t know what you are talking about. Both Chomksy and the late Gore Vidal, crazed leftists, were ever lionized by our media.

    “Chomsky was speaking at Harvard. The young neo-cons, bless them, tore down all the fliers. The Boston papers did not even report that Chomsky was speaking. Yet he still draws crowds of over 2000 by word of mouth alone.”

    Chomsky has been an ever present feature in academia for decades. It is conservatives on college campuses who are shouted down by the forces of tolerance.

    “Father Daniel Berrigan made some nuanced criticisms of Israel years and years ago – he was dropped by The New York Times and TV as a spokesperson.”

    Actually Berrigan, who received constant press coverage in this country until he assumed room temperature, called Israel a criminal Jewish community. Like most leftists he hated Israel.

    “Pope John Paul was almost reluctant to recognize Helda Camara’s martyrdom.”

    Camera was never a martyr except to common sense.

    “This led to the truly sociopathic regime of Allende and the systematic slaughter of thousands of Chilean democrats.”

    Allende’s, Castro’s pal., regime caused the Pinochet regime. The Pinochet regime ended in a prosperous democratic Chile and the left has never forgiven the late dictator for that. Imagine if Castro had left a prosperous and democratic Cuba.

    “It’s OK for bishops to be political as long as they do it in Marxist regimes.”
    That trample on the Church? Of course.

    “Milton Friedman earned big bucks as economic adviser to Allende and his junta.”

    Nope:

    Milton Friedman gave some lectures advocating free market economic policies at the Universidad Católica de Chile. In 1975, two years after the coup, he met with Pinochet for 45 minutes, where the general “indicated very little indeed about his own or the government’s feeling” and the president asked Friedman to write him a letter laying out what he thought Chile’s economic policies should be, which he also did.[26] To stop inflation, Friedman proposed reduction of government deficits that had increased in the past years and a flat commitment by government that after six months it will no longer finance government spending by creating money. He proposed relief of cases of real hardship among poorest classes.[2] In October 1975 the New York Times columnist Anthony Lewis declared that “the Chilean junta’s economic policy is based on the ideas of Milton Friedman…and his Chicago School”.[26]

    Friedman has wondered why some have attacked him for giving a lecture in Chile: “I must say, it’s such a wonderful example of a double standard, because I had spent time in Yugoslavia, which was a communist country. I later gave a series of lectures in China. When I came back from communist China, I wrote a letter to the Stanford Daily newspaper in which I said, ‘It’s curious. I gave exactly the same lectures in China that I gave in Chile. I have had many demonstrations against me for what I said in Chile. Nobody has made any objections to what I said in China. How come?’” He noted that his visit was unrelated to the political side of the regime and that, during his visit to Chile, he even stated that following his economic liberalization advice would help bring political freedom and the downfall of the regime.[27]

    “Castro, if not already Marxist,”

    http://www.nytimes.com/1986/10/19/magazine/fidel-castro-s-years-as-a-secret-communist.html?pagewanted=all

    “No worries, we had the CIA paying local thugs to hunt down and kill, sorry ‘take out’ as you Americans say, Che.”

    Are you seriously contending that Che, Casto’s hangman, was a social democrat?

    “Cubans had a higher standard of living under Batista?”

    Yes they did. That is why modern Cubans are still driving around in museum relics from the 1950’s.

    “prostitution”

    The world’s oldest profession has been one of the mainstays of the Castro economy:

    http://www.cubanet.org/htdocs/CNews/y00/jun00/30e17.htm

    “P.S. Save the Children NGOS were very impressed by the skill, expertise and commitment of Chilean doctors in the hell of the ebola crisis.
    I know someone who was there, Donald.”

    Castro’s Cuba has a three tier medical system. The first two tiers provide first world medical treatment to hard currency foreigners and to Communist party officials and their families. The third tier is for the vast majority of Cubans and is hellacious even by Third World standards.

  • I respect the informed opinion and front-line experience of your parents, Nate. So I will leave the reputation of Cuba’s young medics in their safe hands.
    As for my not acknowledging the ‘positive’ side of America.
    Being ‘positive’ for its own sake, as a Saul Bellow character says, can be just another game. (The Adventures of Augie March?)
    Being ‘negative’ with some moral purpose can be a good thing.
    You are welcome to be as negative about Britain as you like. We need to hear it.
    Surely Christian love calls us to look hard at ourselves, and to look critically at our own nation and those nations we admire.
    Christ called the common people to ‘repent’ because He loved them with a special love.
    I only need to see the oppressed people who come to America for a better life.
    Men and women escaping communist and fascist regimes. Yes, many of them Cubans.
    They love America and only want to work hard and enjoy religious freedom.
    Nor do I flatter myself in claiming to understand the US.
    Robert Caro’s monumental biography of LBJ made me see how hard it is to understand your country. But trying to understand is part of one’s endeavour.
    Recently I read an essay by William Styron on his friend James Jones.
    A veteran of WWII and a student of American history, Jones was visiting Washington for the first time.
    He stood looking at a monument to men who had fallen in the Civil War. Turning to Styron he said, ‘Those men died for nothing.’
    Many would be shocked by such a statement. But in his own way Jones was contributing to the debate that never ends. History.

  • Mr. Hagerty, those of us Americans who post here are well aware of our nation’s sins and faults. Fidel Castro was a bully, propped up and financed by the Soviet Union and unwilling to realize that his system was garbage. A long, meandering essay about American intervention in Latin America….our backyard that has been an unstable place since the Spanish and Portugese left…can in no way justify the deeds of Castro.

  • I wish I had Donald’s knowledge of history and patience in explaining these things to people who live in lands which we Americans rescued from Fascists and Nazis.

  • To Donald R McClarey.
    We have a very different world view. But let me say that I have taken issue with quite a number of ‘leftist’ people in my time. As long as forty years ago. On matters such as education and the Soviet Union.
    Chomsky is ever present in academia, as you say, perhaps because intelligent open-minded people there wish to hear him.
    Chomsky is attacked for having ‘sources’ that are said not to be ‘real’ sources at all, but he stands up very well to his critics. The sources turn out to be real if only his complacent enemies had looked hard enough.
    These sources show that hundreds of Palestinian villages were wiped off the face of the earth by the Israelis many years ago. Palestinian poets and writers have tried to preserve that lost culture.
    Amos Oz has criticised his own country in similar terms, and there goes another ‘leftist’ no doubt.
    Edward Said (another ‘leftist’ sorry) said he and Chomsky were seldom asked to speak on television though Paul Johnston (a ‘rightist’ and one of my own favourite authors) was always on US television.
    If I don’t know what I am talking about, then please show me an objective break-down of the people who have appeared on US news channels over the last 10 years.
    In Britain our universities have skilled media academics who monitor news coverage; the US must have them too.
    But Said would say that, wouldn’t he? Hell, these lefties, they’re everywhere.
    Television and newspapers are another story.
    The coverage of Iran and Afghanistan in both the American and British press struck me as being very limited.
    British television was a disappointment too, though Channel 4 stood out in asking tough questions. Its series Unreported World is worth watching if you want to see how the world’s economic systems shaft poor people.
    As for Vidal being ‘lionized’. His theory that America had an ’empire’ was pretty much ridiculed when he first proposed it. Things look different now.
    I am aware Cuba has a three-tier health system but I do not believe Castro (for all his terrible faults) planned it that way.
    He regretted the return of prostitution to the streets of Havana.
    In Batista’s day children were bartered for sex, bought by rich perverts.
    Cuba became degraded. The Party elite must take much of the blame but the embargo was cruel, unnecessary and hypocritical. The US propped up some rotten regimes with histories of human rights violations.
    Milton Friedman had a sense of humour and I admired aspects of the man and some of his ideas.
    But he parlayed with Pinochet, a brute with the blood of the young on his hands.
    I never said Castro and Che were social democrats.
    I do think social democracy with a mixed economy were the best weapons against communism.
    I admired Keynes. A leftist?
    Joe McCarthy probably thought so.

  • Yes Lucius, America’s intervention in WWII saved Europe from barbarism. I am reading Rick Atkinson’s The Guns At Last Light, so it is very much on my mind..
    I do know about the appalling American losses in the Ardenne Forest and at the Bulge.
    Remember, Roosevelt was giving Britain aid and hiding it from Congress, before Pearl Harbour.
    Remember too that the US presented Britain with a hefty bill at the end of the war. American war profiteers made millions.
    Britain’s economy was in ruins in 1945 but we managed to provide a health service and a welfare system for our people, which Mrs Thatcher dismantled in the name of the market economy.
    Clement Atlee, the British Prime Minister in 1945, came up with the Special Relationship with America.
    As someone said, it’s special to us but not to America.,

  • “Britain’s economy was in ruins in 1945 but we managed to provide a health service and a welfare system for our people, which Mrs Thatcher dismantled in the name of the market economy.”
    .
    Margaret Thatcher was one of the greatest women to ever walk the face of God’s green Earth. That the socialists of England reject God’s gift in her, preferring instead handouts from Caesar, is simply par for the course. Sadly her attempt to rid your island of suicidal socialism never succeeded. Yet her legacy lives on. She with Ronald Reagan and Pope St JP II defeated socialism’s close cousin of communism in the USSR though they could not drive the snakes of the fantasy of free health care for all from our suffering parent land.
    .
    TANSSAAFL
    .
    There Ain’t No Such Thing As A Free Lunch. Cuba is the end goal of England’s enbrace of the lunacy of free health care, and equally America’s Obamacare. Such pipe dreams die one dictator at a time – Fidel Castro did not depart soon enough.

  • “Clement Atlee, the British Prime Minister in 1945, came up with the Special Relationship with America.
    As someone said, it’s special to us but not to America.,”

    What baloney. It was very special in America when upheld by a Churchill or a Thatcher. Neither was known to toady to Americans. When they spoke Americans listened.

  • “Chomsky is ever present in academia, as you say, perhaps because intelligent open-minded people there wish to hear him.”

    Mo, because Chomsky is a far left loon and that panders to the prejudices of most of academia. Most American universities seek to shut out ideas they do not approve of. You can find much more intellectual diversity at most American bars.

    “Chomsky is attacked for having ‘sources’ that are said not to be ‘real’ sources at all, but he stands up very well to his critics. The sources turn out to be real if only his complacent enemies had looked hard enough.”

    Chomsky reaches conclusions first and then scrambles for factoids that support his conclusions.

    “These sources show that hundreds of Palestinian villages were wiped off the face of the earth by the Israelis many years ago. Palestinian poets and writers have tried to preserve that lost culture.”

    The “Palestinians” made the mistake in 1948 of assuming that the Jews would be wiped off the face of the Earth by the invading Arab militaries from each of their neighbors, and hence the “Palestinian” leaders rejected the partition plan. They choose poorly. Ironically, the Arab citizens of Israel are the freest Arabs on the face of the globe.

    “Edward Said (another ‘leftist’ sorry) said he and Chomsky were seldom asked to speak on television though Paul Johnston (a ‘rightist’ and one of my own favourite authors) was always on US television.”
    Only an American history enthusiast such as myself would even know who Paul Johnson is. It would be a dull American undergraduate indeed who would not know the names of Said and Chomsky, especially Chomsky because of his cult like following in American academia.

    “If I don’t know what I am talking about, then please show me an objective break-down of the people who have appeared on US news channels over the last 10 years.”

    Please. I am not going to waste my time proving that water is wet or fire burns. Vidal, until the very last years of his life, was a frequent presence on American television. Chomsky has had less of a presence, but he has been there. One of the earlier outings of him I can recall is when he appeared on Bill Buckley’s old Firing Line show on PBS. His videos are ubiquitous on YouTube.

    “The coverage of Iran and Afghanistan in both the American and British press struck me as being very limited.”

    Good coverage of any foreign nation requires in-depth knowledge of the place, something most foreign journalists lack.

    “As for Vidal being ‘lionized’. His theory that America had an ’empire’ was pretty much ridiculed when he first proposed it. Things look different now.”

    Vidal was a talented novelist. When it came to his looney tune conspiratorial political opinions, the best that could be said for him was that he employed a novelist’s craft in making facts fit his world view rather than vice versa.

    “I am aware Cuba has a three-tier health system but I do not believe Castro (for all his terrible faults) planned it that way.”

    Castro was in absolute control until he put his brother in charge of the family business in 2008. Everything that went on in Cuba was because he wanted it that way, at least he wanted it that way as opposed to allowing free elections.

    “In Batista’s day children were bartered for sex, bought by rich perverts.”

    Precisely the same thing goes on in the tourist sex trade promoted by Castro’s regime:

    http://www.miamiherald.com/latest-news/article1948284.html

    “but the embargo was cruel, unnecessary and hypocritical”

    I would actually apply each of those adjectives to the Castro regime.

    “But he parlayed with Pinochet, a brute with the blood of the young on his hands.”

    Pinochet was a piker compared to Castro. Friedman was always willing to tell anyone what he believed would lead to economic improvement.

    “I admired Keynes. A leftist?”

    I admire Keynes as a literary stylist. As an economist he made the dismal science a bit more dismal. You might enjoy this:

  • “Cubans had a higher standard of living under Batista?”

    It seems there is hard evidence of this:

    “But rather than raise the poor up, Castro and Guevara shoved the rich and the middle class down. The result was collapse. ‘Between 1960 and 1976,’ Cuzan says, ‘Cuba’s per capita GNP in constant dollars declined at an average annual rate of almost half a percent. The country thus has the tragic distinction of being the only one in Latin America to have experienced a drop in living standards over the period.’”

    Source:

    http://www.city-journal.org/html/last-communist-city-13649.html

  • From the same article about its wonderful health care:

    “As for the free health care, patients have to bring their own medicine, their own bedsheets, and even their own iodine to the hospital. Most of these items are available only on the illegal black market, moreover, and must be paid for in hard currency—and sometimes they’re not available at all. Cuba has sent so many doctors abroad—especially to Venezuela, in exchange for oil—that the island is now facing a personnel shortage. ‘I don’t want to say there are no doctors left,’ says an American man who married a Cuban woman and has been back dozens of times, ‘but the island is now almost empty. I saw a banner once, hanging from somebody’s balcony, that said, DO I NEED TO GO TO VENEZUELA FOR MY HEADACHE?'”

  • “He regretted the return of prostitution to the streets of Havana”
    What a lie!
    ‘In a mark of just how close to the brink the Cuban economy really was, Castro even welcomed the large-scale return of prostitution, which he had called a “social illness” in the early days of the revolution. But in a 1992 speech to the National Assembly, he bragged that the army of freelance hookers who swarmed through Havana’s streets every night in search of tourists were the most cultured in the world. “There are no women forced to sell themselves to a man, to a foreigner, to a tourist,” Castro said of the women, known as jineteras in local slang. “Those who do so do it on their own, voluntarily, and without any need for it. We can say that they are highly educated and quite healthy.”’
    http://www.miamiherald.com/news/nation-world/world/americas/fidel-castro-en/article117186483.html

  • Nearly 1,900 words (i.e. three single-spaced typed pages, pica font), shot through with fiction. Nearly all in defense of a small and terminally ill-governed country (the most retrograde in Latin America), appended to which is a slander directed at a small and generally well-governed country.

    While we’re at it, J. Haggerty, the quality of life in Baltimore is deficient for two reasons: street crime and school disorder. The political class in Maryland could repair this problem, but they cannot be bothered, nor do they suffer electorally for chronic nonfeasance in this regard.

  • To Art Deco:
    I am not ‘defending’ Castro. He was a dictator of a one-party state. Absolute power corrupts. So any despot must become very corrupt indeed. Castro’s latter remarks about prostitution can hardly be defended.
    Thirty years before, Garcia Marquez found Castro to be extremely astute in his judgments and very well informed in world affairs. Clearly he had deteriorated. So it was a case of an old man hanging on to power. The communist classes do this while the people suffer. Romania is another example of the extremes to which despots will go in their addiction to power.
    But I was attempting to look at the Cuban Revolution in an historic context. If the political class in Maryland can be guilty of ‘chronic nonfeasance’, then so too can national government be guilty of lies, injustice and intimidation.
    It is inevitable that American historians will now re-examine the involvement of the USA and American business in pre-Castro Cuba. I hope they will not be shouted down as traitors or as Castro sympathisers.
    Now this is not an ‘attack’ on the United States. I am having a conversation, I hope.
    To give one example.
    Mr McClarey mentioned the Palestinians and the partition. By 1947 the United States emerged as the most aggressive proponent of partition. That is the context in which the United Nations recommended the partitioning of Palestine into a Jewish and Arab state.
    The United States persuaded the General Assembly of the UN to delay a vote in order to bring certain Latin American countries into line with its own views. Some delegates charged the USA with diplomatic intimidation – they feared American ‘reprisals’.
    The UN was established to uphold the rights of all peoples to self-determination. But in this case the UN denied the rights of the Palestinians, who formed two thirds of the country.
    Indeed large sections of Israel’s society were opposed or extremely unhappy with partition, including Ben-Gurion.
    As for the Arabs who fled in terror, they feared the repetition of the 1948 Zionist massacres.
    The winter of 1949 was the first winter of exile for more than 50,000 Palestinians. Many of these starving people were only miles away from their own vegetable gardens and orchards, to which they could not return.
    Some ten years before, David Ben-Gurion had said – ‘in our political argument abroad, we minimise Arab opposition to us’. He added, ‘politically we are the aggressors and they defend themselves … The country is theirs, because they inhabit it, whereas we want to come here and settle down, and in their view we want to take away from them their country.
    Now I have gone ‘off topic’ but I am only attempting to demonstrate that there is a wider context to every issue.

  • haggerty started out saying “A benign dictator” and now says “a dictator of a one-party state. Absolute power corrupts. So any despot must become very corrupt indeed.”

    I think haggerty’s verbal self-gratification is just wasting our time to read his long posts.

  • I am not ‘defending’ Castro.

    Let go of my leg.

    As for the Arabs who fled in terror, they feared the repetition of the 1948 Zionist massacres.

    The massacre at Deir Yassin claimed about 120 lives in a war that ran on for about 16 months and had a death toll of about 8,000 It was a sideshow, but for some the only interesting thing that happened in that part of the world during that interval.

    The winter of 1949 was the first winter of exile for more than 50,000 Palestinians.

    I have news for you: the population of refugees in Europe at that time was enumerated in eight digits. (And while we’re at it, Israel alone absorbed 700,000 Jewish immigrants and refugees in just 4 years). You’ve had a refugee problem in the Levant (and not re Silesia or Pomerania, or Cyprus) because a UN agency was erected which, with the co-operation of proximate Arab governments, made being a refugee a way of life. More than half the personal income to be had in Gaza consists of UNRWA doles.

    By 1947 the United States emerged as the most aggressive proponent of partition. That is the context in which the United Nations recommended the partitioning of Palestine into a Jewish and Arab state.

    Mr. Truman, unlike Dean Rusk, was no fool. Ethnically distinct and antagonistic populations do not a viable state make.

    from their own vegetable gardens and orchards, to which they could not return.

    Their own? Allodial tenures were atypical at that time and place and Jewish landowners employed Arab agricultural labor.

    But in this case the UN denied the rights of the Palestinians, who formed two thirds of the country.

    There were no Palestinians at that time. The local Arabophone population had no such self-understanding, and the term ‘Palestine’ and its derivatives were at that time favored by the Jewish population, not the Arab population. The locals understood themselves as associated with particular villages, or particular lineages, or as Syrians, or as Arabs (itself a novel identity for aught but the Bedouin). And, of course, the local Arabs were not denied territorial self-government by the act of the United Nations or anyone but their own political leadership. What they did not want and were implored to accept was the presence of the Jews and Jews in a superordinate position vis a vis Arabs in those areas where they predominated. While we’re at it, there were three Arab states erected in the the Levant between 1919 and 1948. They had a total population of 5.4 million in 1946. The Arab population in mandatory Palestine was about 1.2 million.

    It’s a reasonable inference that the Ben-Gurion quotations are fabrications, likely floating around the internet for 20 years now.

  • We’re up to 2,300 words from J. Haggerty.

  • It is inevitable that American historians will now re-examine the involvement of the USA and American business in pre-Castro Cuba. I hope they will not be shouted down as traitors or as Castro sympathisers.

    Cuba as a political economy is nothing like the rest of Latin America as we speak. As for the period prior to 1959, the most notable thing about Cuba was that it was one of the more affluent territories in the region (behind the Southern Cone, not much else). Its political history as a sovereign country was briefer and somewhat less untidy than the Latin American norm, perhaps bearing closest resemblance to Panama in this respect.

    It’s is inevitable that our ruined arts and sciences faculties will produce indictments of American business and Theodore Roosevelt and John Foster Dulles in lieu of exploring why Latin American elite behavior (and rank-and-file reaction thereto) has been so unproductive for so long. It’s also inevitable that people will write inane flak-pieces while denying that’s what they’re doing.

  • “We’re up to 2,300 words from J. Haggerty.”
    .
    Yak, yak, yak, yak, yak……
    .
    Not one of which disproves that Fidel Castro was a murderous communist butcher best left to the judgement of God’s hands.

  • De mortuis nil nisi bonum.
    .
    Ergo, Castro became a good red. He spent his life fighting capitalism and he died on “Black Friday.” Karma?
    .
    Outside Cuba, North Korea, Das Kapital, SJWs’ feverish psyches, the post-modern, (morally and fiscally) bankrupt welfare state there is no unalienable, God-given human right of one person or group to take another person’s or group’s property. Government without justice is organized brigandage.
    .
    And, We Christians can simply ignore the tens of thousands of murders, tortures and imprisonments of Castro’s “enemies of the state” because Castro clothed and fed the poor; and we all are children of God; and BARF; . . .
    .

  • Gentlemen, I don’t need to tell you that it is Advent. No more yak yak yak from me.
    I am off to meditate on American Catholic’s timely look at Saint Bernard of Clairvaux, ‘the last of the fathers’ as Thomas Merton called him in a short book of that name.
    I wish you all a closer walk with Our Saviour.
    I leave you with someone else’s words.

    ‘I believe that there is no country in the world including any and all countries under colonial domination, where economic colonization, humiliation and exploitation were worse than in Cuba, in part owing to my country’s policies during the Batista regime.
    ‘I approved the proclamation which Fidel Castro made in the Sierra Maestra, when he justifiably called for justice and especially yearned to rid Cuba of corruption.
    ‘I will go even further: to some extent it is as though Batista was the incarnation of a number of sins on the part of the United States.
    ‘Now we shall have to pay for those sins.
    ‘In the matter of the Batista regime, I am in agreement with the first Cuban revolutionaries. That is perfectly clear.’

    President John F Kennedy 1963

  • That quote is from left wing French journalist Jean Daniel. He is the only source for it. Here is a quote from a speech JFK made four days before his death:

    But just as we have friends abroad, we also have enemies. Communism is struggling to subvert and destroy the process of democratic development, to extend its rule to other nations of this hemisphere. If the Alliance is to succeed, we must continue to support measures to halt Communist infiltration and subversion, and to assist governments menaced from abroad. The American States must be ready to come to the aid of any government requesting aid to prevent a take-over linked to the policies of foreign communism rather than to an internal desire for change. My own country is prepared to do this. We in this hemisphere must also use every resource at our command to prevent the establishment of another Cuba in this hemisphere. For if there is one principle which has run through the long history of this hemisphere it is our common determination to prevent the rule of foreign systems or nations in the Americas.

    We have ultimately won this battle against every great power in the past. We will continue to wage it and win it. And as we gain momentum and strength, the appeal and force of communism will greatly diminish. This has already begun to happen. Castroism, which a few years ago commanded the allegiance of thousands in almost every country, today has far fewer followers scattered across the continent. Experience in China, the Soviet Union, and in Cuba itself has revealed that the promises of abundance under tyranny are false. We ourselves can prove that democratic progress is the surest answer to the promises of the totalitarians.

    These are the many fronts of the Alliance for Progress. The conduct of those fronts, the steady conquest of the surely yielding enemies of misery and hopelessness, hunger, and injustice is the central task for the Americas in our time. But no sense of confidence, of optimism in the future of the hemisphere as a whole, can conceal our feelings at the self-inflicted exile of Cuba from the society of American Republics. The genuine Cuban revolution, because it was against the tyranny and corruption of the past, had the support of many whose aims and concepts were democratic. But that hope for freedom and progress was destroyed. The goals proclaimed in the Sierra Maestra were betrayed in Havana.

    It is important to restate what now divides Cuba from my country and from the other countries of this hemisphere. It is the fact that a small band of conspirators has stripped the Cuban people of their freedom and handed over the independence and sovereignty of the Cuban nation to forces beyond the hemisphere. They have made Cuba a victim of foreign imperialism, an instrument of the policy of others, a weapon in an effort dictated by external powers to subvert the other American Republics. This, and this alone, divides us. As long as this is true, nothing is possible. Without it, everything is possible. Once this barrier is removed, we will be ready and anxious to work with the Cuban people in pursuit of those progressive goals which a few short years ago stirred their hopes and the sympathy of many people throughout the hemisphere.

    http://www.presidency.ucsb.edu/ws/?pid=9529

  • ‘I believe that there is no country in the world including any and all countries under colonial domination, where economic colonization, humiliation and exploitation were worse than in Cuba, in part owing to my country’s policies during the Batista regime.

    If it helps you feel better, fine. As a comparative assessment in a troubled world, it’s utter nonsense.

  • “Ergo, Castro became a good red. He spent his life fighting capitalism and he died on ‘Black Friday.’ Karma?”

    Just the type of humor that keeps me reading TAC! ?

  • Alternate headline: Cuba’s Wealthiest Plutocrat Dies.

  • I don’t remember where I first saw this information but just found it on World Net Daily re: Mary appearing to St. Anthony Mary Claret and predicting Castro.

    http://www.wnd.com/2006/08/37357/
    “Did 19th-century priest
    predict Castro’s death?
    Archbishop’s 1850’s vision of Cuba’s patron saint –
    told of bearded leader’s demise in 40th year of rule”

    I was born on a US military base at the end of Sept. 1962. My father was in the army after college ROTC. They were sent to Florida during the Crisis. He thought we were all going to get nuked. I know JFK is the reason older Cubans vote Republican but frankly I’m glad nobody used the bomb or started a war – the Cold War was enough.

  • @ms

    I enjoyed the link.
    Thank you.

  • Chavez died not long ago, next it was Castro. Like Hollywood actors, these things often happen in threes.

    Like Bill Goldberg used to say in World Championship Wrestling, after he had powerslammed the latest jobber into the canvas covered plywood….”Who’s next!”

    Oh, and Justin Trudeau is a complete idiot. Canada, or more precisely Greater Toronto Area, Vancouver and Quebec, enjoy your Barack Hussein Obama. Prepare to see more Canadian hockey teams – and businesses – move to the United States.

  • Dear Mr McClarey,
    Thank you for providing us with this speech from President Kennedy. It is indeed crucial to our understanding of what happened in Cuba. I for one will read and ponder it. This speech deserves to go viral in the wake of Castro’s death. How moving to think it was made just four days before the President’s death. I recall our school in Scotland praying for the President in the last hour of his life.
    I have just read your recent essay on American Catholic, ‘Christ and History’. It is first rate. I look forward to reading any book that you write on the forces at large that are reshaping our world and which are also out to attack and rewrite Christianity. I am rereading Hilaire Belloc’s brilliant study of Cardinal Richelieu. We need another Belloc now.
    J Haggerty

  • Thank you for your kind words Mr. Haggerty.

  • Former Clergy Peter Grant speaks about Castro’s death – and the kids Castro sent to fight in the same African wars Peter fought in.
    http://bayourenaissanceman.blogspot.ch/2016/11/so-fidel-castro-is-dead-this-is-not-my.html

Cuba: A Failed Experiment

Tuesday, December 3, AD 2013

For more than six decades Fidel Castro has been running an anti-Capitalist experiment.  The results should be clear to all except Michael Moore and his ideological think-a-likes.  Michael Totten gives us the grim details:

 

 

 

I walked toward the center of town from the somewhat remote Habana Libre Hotel and found myself the only foreigner in a miles-wide swath of destruction.

I’ve seen cities in the Middle East pulverized by war. I’ve seen cities elsewhere in Latin America stricken with unspeakable squalor and poverty. But nowhere else have I seen such a formerly grandiose city brought as low as Havana. The restored part of town—artifice though it may be—shows all too vividly what the whole thing once looked like.

It was a wealthy European city when it was built. Poor nations do not build capitals that look like Havana. They can’t. Poor nations build Guatemala City and Cairo.

“Havana” Theodore Dalrymple wrote in City Journal, “is like Beirut, without having gone through the civil war to achieve the destruction.” Actually, it’s worse even than that. Beirut pulses with energy. Parts of it are justifiably even a little bit snobbish like Paris. Even its poorest neighborhoods, the ones controlled by Hezbollah, aren’t as gruesome as most of Havana.

Yet the bones of Cuba’s capital are unmatched in our hemisphere. “The Cubans of successive centuries created a harmonious architectural whole almost without equal in the world,” Dalrymple wrote. “There is hardly a building that is wrong, a detail that is superfluous or tasteless. The tiled multicoloration of the Bacardi building, for example, which might be garish elsewhere, is perfectly adapted—natural, one might say—to the Cuban light, climate, and temper. Cuban architects understood the need for air and shade in a climate such as Cuba’s, and they proportioned buildings and rooms accordingly. They created an urban environment that, with its arcades, columns, verandas, and balconies, was elegant, sophisticated, convenient, and joyful.”

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5 Responses to Cuba: A Failed Experiment

  • Donald,

    There is no argument from the Catholic Church’s side. We have formally and completely rejected “Statism” [government control of everything including the economy] Anyone reading the Social Encyclicals in their entirety will come to the same conclusion. I recognize that those still holding to Liberation Theology or interpreting all social teaching through the Populorum Progressio Encyclical (hermeneutic of discontinuity) and so called Catholic progressives in our own country would disagree. However, they are the ones who are not in the ‘mainstream’ of the teaching of the Church.

    Now, the dialogue with Democratic Capitalism and the Free Market [notice it is a dialogue, not a rejection] continues. Critiques made by the Church in social encyclicals or even the brief comments of Pope Francis in Evangelii Gaudium are, and need to be seen, in this light.

    If and when the Church does critique Democratic Capitalism, because it is a flawed human system, just as every other human system is flawed, given the Fallen Nature of ‘man’ in original sin, some people automatically think the Church is praising what even steadfast Free Marketers believe to be the only other alternative [although already ‘tried, measured’ and found wanting’]. It puts the whole Church in the position of what the Church in Latin America experienced: that if you were not ‘with’ the conservative, and in some cases right wing government and its security forces you must be a Marxist and a subversive.

    I believe you would readily say that ‘criticizing’ does not mean ‘rejecting’ etc. am I correct?

    As to Cuba, the sad, poor country of Cuba….in the late fifties, the people of Cuba had two choices, Batista and his fascist like control of the country, backed by Mafia money, and the American government, and the Marxist revolution of Fidel Castro, backed by the Soviet Union in its lust to counter America in every possible Cold War checker game. That was not much of a choice. The Cuban, in fact any form of marxist government, not only will not succeed-it cannot succeed. It denies the dignity of the individual person and his (her) hunger and thirst for truth, justice (the good) and freedom.

    And Cuba today? Why doesn’t America re-establish full political etc ties with Cuba? We had them with the Soviet Union. We have them with the People’s Republic of China. We have them with Vietnam, a much sorer piece of American history. It seems nothing less than hypocrisy, or is it prejudice (?), for America not to do so.

  • Botolph: As to Cuba, the sad, poor country of Cuba….in the late fifties, the people of Cuba had two choices, Batista and his fascist like control of the country, backed by Mafia money, and the American government, and the Marxist revolution of Fidel Castro, backed by the Soviet Union in its lust to counter America in every possible Cold War checker game. That was not much of a choice.” Who in their right mind, either in Cuba or here, would make the same choice again, 50+ years later? Batista looks like quite a deal compared to the greatest-still-barely-living-murderer, Fidel and his cohort.

  • Actually Batista was a political opportunist who had the support of the Cuban Communist party during his first period as President of Cuba in 1940-1944. The US ensured the victory of Castro when it stopped selling arms to Batista in 1958 and imposed an arms embargo on Cuba the same year. After the fall of Batista he was refused entry into the US. The US traded Batista for Castro, a very bad deal for the Cuban people.

  • Poor Cuba. Cubans deserve better. Thomas Jefferson wanted Cuba. the US wanted to buy Cuba from Spain in the latter half of the 19th century. What a shame Spain did not sell it. What a shame Reagan did not blockade Cuba until it collapsed.

    Castro harbors American fugitives from justice and a convicted cop killer, Joanne Chismard.

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One More Thing to Thank God For This Thursday

Tuesday, November 26, AD 2013

 

 

Michael Totten reminds us why we might wish to thank God this Thursday that we were not born in Cuba:

Private Internet is banned. You can only get online in hotels, Internet cafes, and government offices. Regular citizens are effectively prohibited from accessing the Web by the price. It cost me seven dollars an hour to use a dial-up connection. The government caps Cuban salaries at 20 dollars a month, so it costs a citizen ten days of income just to get online for an hour. Once they do get online, the connection will be so slow that surfing around is impossible. It took me the better part of my hour to get connected, to open my inbox, and to send a single email to my wife telling her I had arrived safely and without incident.

The government strangles the Internet because it fears free information. There can be no other reason. That’s also why they vet journalists in advance and require special visas. Information can barely get in and barely get out. There can be no Twitter or Facebook revolution in Cuba’s near future.

And there are apparently no real newspapers or magazines, at least none that I saw. No International Herald Tribune. No Newsweek and Time in the dentist’s office. No Google News since there is no Google. Certainly not the Wall Street Journal or The Economist.

I hadn’t even been there a full day and I already felt umbilically severed from the rest of the planet. My awareness of the world narrowed to what I could see right in front of me. I felt as though I had lost one of my senses. I had no real access to the Internet. No CNN, no New York Times. No blogs, not even my own. Nothing at all. I could not use my iPhone. I may as well have been at the bottom of the ocean.

The only newspaper I saw was Granma, the official organ of the Communist Party. Juventud Rebelde supposedly exists somewhere, as well, but I didn’t see any copies.

That, by the way, is the most outrageously named newspaper I know of. The English translation of Juventud Rebelde is Rebel Youth—as if it’s Cuba’s version of Rolling Stone. But God, no. It’s not that at all. Rebel Youth indoctrinates young people with the zombie ideology of walking dead men. Youthful and rebellious it ain’t. It is the most tired, stale, old, and establishment “newspaper” in the hemisphere.

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18 Responses to One More Thing to Thank God For This Thursday

  • Cuba sounds like the perfect home for Michelle, Barry, Nancy and on and on.

    I am grateful for our freedoms.
    To all contributors and frequent visitors of TAC….Happy Thanksgiving and Blessings to you and your loved ones.
    Thank God for all of you.
    Your insights and deep Faith help me to go on proclaiming the Great News in my daily affairs. Thanks be to God.

  • Obama must wish he was Castro.

  • But, free healthcare!

  • By far the scariest part I found was:

    French philosopher Michel Foucault assailed it as a cruel, ingenious cage. “The panoptic schema makes any apparatus of power more intense,” he wrote. “It’s strength is that it never intervenes, it is exercised spontaneously and without noise.”

    Prisoners collaborate in their own surveillance because their heads are haunted by the thought of an all-seeing eye.

    No prison was ever designed to all of Benthem’s specifications, but dozens were constructed around the world that met most of them. The one that most closely resembles Benthem’s Panoptic regime is in Cuba.

    I have something to add to it, but quite frankly it chills me too much to say anything.

  • Nate, I think today’s society of surveillance is primarily a product of increasing crime. When morality breaks down, people are less likely to self-govern. Resources are limited, and security personnel cannot be placed everywhere. But cameras can be placed almost everywhere.

  • Be careful what you wish for. The way Obama’s going, you’re headed right down that path.
    But I suspect that’ll change next November.

  • What continues to astonish me is just how committed some peopel remain to theory. They are willing to forego all sorts of things, mistreat others, and deny reality fro the sake of a marxist dream. It’s incredible. Cuba and North Korea are dinosaurs. What’s really scary is that many people in free countries continue to believe in marxism.

  • Don the Kiwi-
    “…but I expect that will change next Nov.”

    How I wish!!
    In 2016 the Dems will go with Cult hit Hillary. As the mindless dweebs thought it cool and “historic” to vote for the 1st Afro-sudo-American you can bet your 4X beer that they’ll vote Hell er eee.

  • “But I suspect that’ll change next November.”
    Right now the Dems are in full melt down mode over ObamaCare and it will only get worse by election day next year. In 2016 I think the public will be more than ready to make the customary swing to the opposing party after a two term presidency.

  • “When morality breaks down, people are less likely to self-govern. Resources are limited, and security personnel cannot be placed everywhere.”
    When morality breaks down? Did morality self implode” The person of God was forcibly removed from the public square by atheism which denies the immortal rational human soul and eternal destiny. When nobody was looking our unalienable civil rights went to hell in a hand basket. Human sacrifice, pornography and every other vile, evil vice became our women’s home companion. Men never bothered to grow up. So, we got sodomy. Legalized, codified atheism begot every demon in hell and you say morality broke down. Well, it had a lot of help.
    As far as Hillary, Hillary was more than willing to put innocent men in prison for two years for healing a patient without her healthcare. Hillary is the matron of the gulag. Wait and see if Obamacare isn’t willing to imprison citizens for practicing freedom. Obamacare has a clause which states that Obama may change anything at any time, even Congress cannot do that. Obama can order a conscience clause if he cared about his constituents. “…or prohibit the free exercise thereof.”

    HAPPY THANKSGIVING

  • Obama offering a “conscience clause” is akin to Hitler offering a Kosher catalog to the “vacationers of Auschwitz.”

    In the end the two sweet ideologists will have an eternity to pat each other on the back at their “social justice practices.”

  • Jon,

    I must apologize for heading into the wind with guns blazing with my last comment. All these happenings are no act of God. They are calculated and diabolical man made travesties of Justice. I do not apologize for speaking what they are. I apologize for saying it to an inocent person.
    Do forgive me and celebrate a Happy Thanksgiving. At our home some Thanksgiving Days we have a WHOBEAST…one roast beef with eight chiken legs attached. Domesticated WHOBEASTS can’t fly any more than domesticated turkeys.

  • Philip: “Obama offering a “conscience clause” is akin to Hitler offering a Kosher catalog to the “vacationers of Auschwitz.”
    True. Enjoy your domesticated turkey and remember grace before meals.

  • This to shall pass Mary DeVoe…
    domesticated turkey & the reign of a false presidency.
    Peace.

  • Mary De Voe, I was speaking metaphorically when I said morality has broken down. It’s kind of like saying America hates itself or our society is committing suicide.
    What is a Whobeast and what does it taste like? Where can i get one?
    Happy Thanksgiving!

  • On November 27th in 1095, Pope Urban II (declared Blessed by Leo XIII) called upon the Franks to defend Eastern Christians and liberate Jerusalem for the glory of God. Give thanks to God for the crusaders.

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  • Finally found what it was that was unnerving me.

    http://hawaiianlibertarian.blogspot.com/2013/12/this-is-just-beginning.html

    Prisoners collaborate in their own surveillance because their heads are haunted by the thought of an all-seeing eye.

    That’s what’s happening. Society is being turned into a Foucault cage as a whole, and we citizens are collaborating in our own surveillance.

    If anything, the cage proves we don’t need the “all-seeing eye” everywhere. Just enough places at random times to convince us it’s everywhere.

    And we’ll construct our own cages.

Castro: the Mainstream Media’s Favorite Dictator

Thursday, August 22, AD 2013

 

“When the world had given us up for dead, the interview with Matthews put the lie to our disappearance.”

Che Guevara, January 1958

Alas, if the mainstream media had only been half as questioning of Castro as the late Stuart Novins was when Castro appeared on Face the Nation on January 11, 1959.  Novins published several stories detailing Castro’s embracing of Communism and the blood stained methods he used to sustain his rule.  In short, Novins was a serious journalist interested in reporting the facts and alerting the American people to developments in Cuba.

Most of his colleagues had a different story to tell about Castro as detailed in Humberto Fontova’s book, The Longest Romance:  The Mainstream Media and Fidel Castro.  In writing this book Fontova certainly has rich examples to choose from.  Go here to view a sample of pro-Castro reporting over the decades in the US media.

It could be argued that Castro became dictator in Cuba largely due to the favorable coverage he received in The New York Times, courtesy of Herbert Matthews:

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8 Responses to Castro: the Mainstream Media’s Favorite Dictator

  • What’s interesting about that is there has been little of it-bleeds-it-leads going on in the Caribbean other than the annual hurricane season. There have not been any wars there since 1965 and the only discrete spikes in civil strife were in Grenada in 1983, an attempted coup in Trinidad in 1990, and serial troubles in Haiti from 1986 to 2004. There was the earthquake in Haiti in 2010 and there was the Jim Jones horror in Guyana in 1978. You cannot say there was much of what they habitually term ‘news’ in Cuba during the period running from 1988 to 2002.

    Do you think that network news broadcast that many special reports from Guatemala or Ecuador during that period? They are more populous countries than Cuba and likely have a larger economic base to boot. Ah, but their May Day celebrations do not have near the panache.

  • It was all in El Salvador (FMLN,) Nicaragua (Sandinistas) and Panama (Noriega.)

  • The Castro/MSM thing is the longest (outstripping the Kennedys, Stalin, and Ho Chi Minh) love affair in history. It’s symptomatic of the left’s (useful idiots) knee-jerk infatuation with dystopian mass-murderers.

  • It was all in El Salvador (FMLN,) Nicaragua (Sandinistas) and Panama (Noriega.)

    That’s blood. I would not endorse the habitual priorities of reporters and editors. I merely note what they are. However, if you are going to broadcast profiles or travelogues of countries south of the border, what would you find distinctive about Cuba.

    1. The world’s only attempt to set up a command economy in the context of export crop monoculture.

    2. In civic and political matters, the most retrograde country in the hemisphere. Without a doubt. Since 1990 if not earlier.

    3. The most enduring example in history of the bureaucratic authoritarian party- state conjoined to a caudillo’s cult of personality. If Castro had retired or died 25 years ago, he still would have graced the scene longer than any other such creature bar Marshal Tito, Enver Hoxha, and Kim Il Sung. (The milestone of ‘most enduring Latin American autocrat in history’ was passed in 1994).

    Of course, pointing that out kind of kills the theme.

  • Seriously? You guys make Castro out to be a bad guy. Here’s why conservatives should accept Castro as their lord and savior… oops, I mean a model leader worthy of emulation. Conservatives usually are in favor of the death penalty. So is Castro. Conservatives want controls on immigration. No one migrates to Cuba, and they have a negative net immigration rate. Conservatives believe the government should leave the economy alone. After the Cuban economy was destroyed, government economic meddling was significantly reduced. Conservatives generally believe that we should worship God and seek Heaven. Castro has proclaimed Cuba to be Heaven (http://izquotes.com/quote/217278). Conservatives believe the U.S. to be the land of opportunity. Castro has instilled that belief in millions of Cubans.

    If Castro were such a bad guy, wouldn’t the MSM tell us that? But they didn’t. It’s not like he advocated an immediate nuclear strike on the United States or something (http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2009/09/22/fidel-castro-suggested-nu_n_294365.html).

  • A/S:

    The smartest man on the planet, Obama, and his leftie stooges are pursuing all of it: death penalty = drone assassinations; hope and change – too soon illegals will be fleeing south as the US economy implodes; all attempts to institute Heaven on Earth result in Hell on earth; etc.

    “Most of the major ills of the world have been caused by well-meaning people who ignored the principle of individual freedom, except as applied to themselves, and who were obsessed with fanatical zeal to improve the lot of mankind-in-the-mass through some pet formula of their own. The harm done by ordinary criminals, murderers, gangsters, and thieves is negligible in comparison with the agony inflicted upon human beings by the professional do-gooders, who attempt to set themselves up as gods on earth and who would ruthlessly force their views on all others with the abiding assurance that the end justifies the means.” From The Mainspring of Human Progress by Henry Grady Weaver

    The MSM has been ignoring facts since Napoleon was a stable boy.

  • “Conservatives usually are in favor of the death penalty. So is Castro.”
    The death penalty is for capital one homicide and the bloodguilt for treason. Puttng patriots and statesmen to death is the greatest form of treason.
    “Most of the major ills of the world have been caused by well-meaning people who ignored the principle of individual freedom, except as applied to themselves,” “well-meaning people”?: Where there is a (good) will, there is a way. Hitler’s trains ran on time. Hitler killed millions of good people.

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Honoring A Murderer in Galway

Thursday, April 12, AD 2012

 “When people stop believing in God, they don’t believe in nothing — they believe in anything.”

 G. K. Chesterton

 Ah poor Ireland.  As the Faith has become weaker in the Emerald Isle, strange new gods are arising, and one of the strangest is Che Guevara, deceased Argentinian revolutionary and hero of politically correct fools everywhere.  In Galway of all places the local government passed a measure approving of a memorial to Castro’s Himmler.

 

The minutes of Galway City Council’s meeting of  Monday, 16 May 2011, include the following proposal: ‘That Galway City Council  commit itself to honoring one of its own, Ernesto ‘Che’ Guevara, descendant of  two of our Tribes, the Lynch family of Lydican House, and the Blakes. The  project to be furthered by liaising with the Argentinean and Cuban  Embassies.’

 

Billy Cameron, an Irish Labor Party councillor in  Galway, has scoffed at the claims made by fellow city councillors that they  didn’t know they had voted to approve a monument in honor of Ernesto ‘Che’ Guevara.

 

To underline his point Councillor Cameron dryly  asked if his fellow Galway City Councillors thought they had been voting for ‘an  egg and spoon race?’ when they unanimously approved the measure.

 

Councilor Cameron also had some advice for  conservative Cuban-Americans who have taken an interest in the case in recent  weeks: they should ‘butt out’ of Irish affairs, he told GalwayIndependent.com.

That last comment is rich.  What business is it of Ireland to honor a man who helped install a brutal tyranny in Cuba?  Of course this is being done because nature abhors a vacuum, and without a belief in Christ, people will search for substitute religions and for many in the West Leftism of various stripes is the favored choice.  It is gratifying that this attempt to honor “Saint” Che is drawing such fire.  Castro’s hangman deserves it:

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10 Responses to Honoring A Murderer in Galway

  • I would cite this, as well as all infatuation with such degenerates, as proof that evolution of the human species remains a myth. To evolve is to become greater and better. Such progress is difficult to find nowadays.

  • I don’t know if I would equate evolution with greater and better. To evolve is simply to adapt to changed conditions. Evolution is neutral as to whether those changes are good or bad, from a moral sense, particularly if we are speaking about “cultural” evolutions.

  • Fascinating video. It is rather ironic that the anti-capitalist Che’s image is exploited by capitalists on t-shirts and coffee mugs. I am sure Che is enjoying this from his 6th circle.

  • “To evolve is simply to adapt to changed conditions.”

    Granted, in the value-neutral sense. But homo sapiens is supposed to be able to change his environment as well as adapt to it.

    If we have that ability, and yet we still wind up on a regular basis with both murdering tyrants and those who worship them, I’d submit that something in the theory is awry.

  • My ancestors departed in suffering and tears.

    The sassenach succeeded after all.

  • For some reason known only to God, there are two surviving….things….that successfully resist extermination. One of them is the cockroach. The other is Marxism.

    Nothing on the face of the earth has failed in such a spectacular way as Marxism. Marxism is the worst ideology, the worst philosophy, the worst economic model, the worst system to devise a society ever thought up by man. Karl Marx was a degenerate. Karl Marx lived off of others for almost all of his adult life. Karl Marx abandoned his children. Karl Marx was a racist, an elitist and in favor of eugenics.

    Marxism survives primarily in the minds of so called academics who infest the so called “institutions of higher learning” which are turning out deeply indebted and highly stupid people. To a lesser degree, Marxism infests the worlds of art and entertainment. Marxism fails when it comes to sports. The blatant cheating of the USSR at the Olympic Games when I was young is proof of that.

    Ronald Reagan was born before the rise of the USSR and lived to see it fall. Karol Wojytla was born a few years after Red October 1917 but he too lived to see the USSR fall. RR and JPII were living proof that smarts, guile and determination were what it took to bring down an Evil Empire. These men should be seen as the heroes of our age and the ages to follow, but the expensive and failed indoctrination systems known as public education have failed the youth of the world and their parents.

    The Black Book of Communism should be required reading of anyone who enters high school. A good book to accompany that would be Bloodlands. Nazism was never more than second worst compared to Communism.

    Yet, the brain dead of the worldwide Political Left continue to genuflect at the High Altar of Evil. Guevara was a punk, a terrorist and a thug – a small man with a vicious mind and accountable to no one. He deserved his fate in Bolivia. the CIA should have cremated his remains and dumped the ashes into the Pacific – like what Israel did to Adolf Eichmann. JFK was too much of a coward to commit the necessary force to eliminate Castro in 1961, and as a result, Castro has sought to spread his cancer thorough Latin America. Castro has failed in creating other Communist states such as his own, but Castro succeeded in indirectly causing the deaths of countless people in Latin America through wars, political repression and economic instability.

    Our failed indoctrination systems have caused the USA to be led by insufferable twits – useful idiots – like Barney Frank, Nancy Pelosi, Hillary Clinton and Obumbler. Notice that these people come from states that are currently abject failures.

    The Irish Labor Party is populated by idiots – useful idiots as Lenin would call them. So is the Democrat Party of the USA, the Socialist Party of France, Spain and Portugal, the Liberal Party of Canada, the Sandinistas, the Chavistas, the followers of Evo Morales in Bolivia, et cetera, ad infinitum.

    Not so long ago, Mairo Vargas Llosa, a Peruvian intellectual, wrote a book, The Guide to the Perfect Latin American Idiot. Latin American “higher education” is permeated with worshipers of Castro, followers of the insufferably stupid Eduard Galeano, and abject haters of the USA, who they blame for all of Latin America’s failures. It is a funny and hard hitting book. Llosa excoriates Latin American politicians, university professors, liberation theology-damaged Catholic religious and other assorted fools.

    People who wear a Che t shirt should be given a week’s vacation in Little Havana and Hialeah. It would be like wearing a Joe Stalin T-shirt in Warsaw. I would pay my own way to see the fireworks from that.

  • Penguin’s Fan: Excellent!!!

  • Don’t blame the Sassanach for what is going on in Ireland. For generations, the Irish stood up for the Church and their Faith against great oppression. Given two decades of economic prosperity, they dumped it all for modernism and materialism. Maybe not all, but a great many.

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Miami Marlins Manager Ozzie Guillen Loves Castro, Should Be Fired

Monday, April 9, AD 2012

In a Time magazine interview Ozzie Guillen, major league baseball manager of the Miami Marlins and home to the largest number of Cuban expatriates, said that “I love Fidel Castro–I respect Fidel Castro.”

Fidel Castro, along with Che Guevara, have committed countless murders of innocent civilians, incarcerated many more, and the rest exiled to America.  Needless to say Castro is a monster that will take his place on the ash heap of history quite soon.

He apologized but the damage is done.  He denounced Castro, but it’s almost meaningless.  Of course I take him in his sincerity and accept the apology, but that doesn’t mean you are allowed to escape punishment.

There are some pundits and reporters say that this is America and we do have a right of free speech, so the Miami Marlins shouldn’t fire Guillen.  That’s where these pundits and reporters get it wrong, yes, Guillen has a right to free speech, but so do the Miami Marlins have a right to fire him in expressing their free speech as well.

The concept of free speech is that the U.S. allows it and they shouldn’t be persecuted for it by the U.S. government, but a private enterprise can do what they want.

Fire the guy.  He’s known to be a loud mouth and he had time to articulate his thoughts in a sit-down interview with Time magazine.  Plus the fact that he is from Venezuela where Hugo Chavez rules with impunity and is the Fidel’s BFF.  So I can see where his “love” for Castro is emanating from.

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26 Responses to Miami Marlins Manager Ozzie Guillen Loves Castro, Should Be Fired

  • Whoa there Tito! Don’t rush to judgment so quickly – I think we should just wait and see what Obama has to say on this before we come to any conclusion on whether or not Guillen should be fired.

    /sarc

  • I was thinking let’s not be like them raving liberals . . .

    Whether the team is winning . . .

    No, wait!

    How long would Guillen last if he said he loves and respects Adolf Hitler?

  • Fidel Castro is a hero of the American Left. About the only mainstream news media that says anything bad about him is the Miami Herald.

    Guillen is incomprehensibly stupid. South Florida has countless Latinos that fled Communist aggression – not just Cubans, but Nicaraguans who fled the Sandinistas, Venezuelans who despise Chavez, Colombians who fled the terror of the FARC and Peruvians who escaped the Sendero Luminoso.

    Guillen made no secret of his admiration for Chavez and his remarks about Castro will get him fired. You do not praise the Castros in Miami.

  • The remarks were inappropriate and the Castro regime is contemptible, but I think we need to stop insisting that everyone who says something stupid should lose his job. The author disliked Guillen(known to be a loudmouth) before the Castro remarks,so perhaps that is coloring his judgment a bit? Regardless, as he has apologized we should allow him an opportunity to redeem himself before demanding he step down. I am not a Guillen fan. But he should have a chance to experience the justified and understandable outrage of the community a bit, and then have a chance to make amends.

  • Chris C.,

    Nope, I’m not backing down.

    I’ve worked in management and have been blessed with great jobs working with some of the finest sports organizations in the country as well as working with some of the finest athletes anywhere.

    And when you have a $350million stadium opening up in Little Havana, you don’t want to start on the wrong foot by insulting your fan base on the most sensitive subject around.

    He should be gone. He won’t starve, he’s got millions in the bank and I’m sure there are other other major league teams that don’t have any standards that are willing to hire him.

  • Why is it that every time a public figure says something that is considered “unpopular” or “unacceptable” that he or she is forced to apologize or otherwise condemned to wear a scarlet letter for life and forever condemned to a lifetime of explaining or defending his or her views.

    Was not America built on dissent? Can we no longer express our genuine feelings without fear of public retribution and the scourge of mediaspeak and mediathink? America, once the guardian of the freedom of speech and protector of individual liberty, has devolved into a land of busybodies and snitches who like to point the finger of reproach and blame at anyone who would utter a minority opinion.

  • Joe,

    Like I said, Mr. Guillen can say anything he wants to say. He’s very well known for this and is a big boy.

    This is not a freedom of speech issue, but if you say so, the Miami Marlins also have the same right.

    This is a business issue.

    The Marlins baseball organization just got a new stadium built (estimates go as high as $600Million) with a new name trying to capture the Miami baseball market. Miami is home to the largest Cuban population in America.

    Logic dictates that you don’t insult your fan base in order to draw them to the ballpark. Especially if you have never before had a good attendance record, even after a World Series title.

    To have the face of the Miami Marlins, Jose Guillen, open his mouth and upset the fanbase that you are trying to woo is a poor business decision.

    Poor business decisions normally get you transferred, demoted, or fired.

    Considering that his area of expertise is managing and no other position is possible, the best business decision to make is to release him from all his duties.

    Case closed.

  • Tito,
    I don’t see where you have standing to close this case. Looking at this as a business issue as you do, I would think that task rests with the Marlins. It would not surprise me if they come to that conclusion, but nor would it shock me if they don’t. Guillen has a long history of saying things he later regrets. Most baseball fans don’t care all that much, especially if he apologizes appropriately. Perhaps Miami fans will be less forgiving, and understandably so, but I suspect the Marlins are in the best position to make that assessment.
    Sometimes it is appropriate to fire someone on grounds other than business. I don’t think that this offense rises to that standard.

  • Paul,

    Punitive.

    It’s a poor business decision, but then again, hiring Guillen was a poor business decision to make in the first place, so they’re par for the course so to speak.

    Mike,

    We can agree to disagree.

    I could be wrong and the Marlins have blockbuster attendance, but I doubt that will happen (increased revenues), especially after the whole Castro-Fiasco.

  • The police speech are out in force as never before, hiding under the umbrellas of “political correctness” and “business decisions.” Yes, I am aware that freedom of speech has limitations and you don’t shout fire in a crowded theater. Of course, what everyone forgets is sometimes the theater is really on fire.

  • When last seen in public, Fidel Castro was seen warmly shaking hands with none other than the Pope. So here we have professing Catholics criticizing Guillen for “loving” Castro, as their spiritual leader no doubt does. But all “love” is not the same, is it? Oh, the irony!

  • Joe,

    First, the state of Florida is a “Right to Work” state.

    Second, Guillen can “love” the pope until the day he dies. He won’t be suffering from attacks on his life, nor hunger, nor poverty.

    You missed the entire point of the article.

  • Tito, I’m not sure where we disagree, unless you are saying that Ozzie’s statement was a firing offense regardless of business considerations. Or you think you are in a better position to assess the business aspects than the Marlins, which I don’t think you mean to suggest.

    If the Marlins have blockbuster attendance it would surely be huge news given recent history.

    Joe, you raise a fair point about the Pope, but I don’t see how this has anything to do with free speech, which is a right against government impairment not private action. The Marlins have their rights too, and that includes firing Ozzie if they think his statements were sufficiently offensive — even aside from business considerations.

  • Mike, I would be interested to see a clause in Guillen’s contract that specifically includes penalties for expressing his opinion about a foreign leader.

    Secondly, Castro dumped a lot of Cuban riffraff during the Mariel boatlift including hundreds of criminals. To assert that all Cubans who now live in Miami were politically persecuted or otherwise suffered under Castro’s regime is to ignore the tyranny of his brutal predecessor, Fulgencio Batista, who used his anti-Communist secret police and U.S.-supplied weaponry to carry out wide-scale violence, torture and public executions; ultimately killing as many as 20,000 Cubans. But at least he was our SOB, wasn’t he?

  • Joe,
    I have no brief for either Castro or Batista — they both brutally suppressed civil rights though at least Batista respected religious and property rights and had no interest in exporting his suppression. Basically, the distinction is the totalitarian (Castro) versus authoritarian (Batista) one identified by Jean Kirkpatick. Authoritarian regimes have little or no ideology — they are basically criminals who allow folks to do as they wish as long as it does not endanger their power. Totalitarian regimes are ideological and therefore seek to control the beliefs of their citizens. The distinction strikes me as a fair way to distinguish grades of evil, which is presumably why Batista was our SOB.

    I have no idea what Guillen’s contract says, but I would not assume it is dispositive in a particular way. I’m pretty sure that firing offenses are not listed with the kind of particularity you suggest though. We lawyers are not that stupid.

  • Mike, totalitarianism is authoritarianism taken to its extreme but is no less insidious in its results. To argue whether one is worse than another is much like debating which of two lethal poisons is deadlier. It doesn’t matter. They both kill in the end.

  • Not only should he be fired…he should be Castro-ated !

  • I disagree, Joe. The two differ not just by degree, but in kind. Any system that allows freedom to worship is better than one that does not. And authoritarian regimes tend to have more limited lifespans and are more likely to eventually democratize, precisely because they are rely on cult of personality to the exlusion of ideology. The fact that Batista was better than Castro is hardly a compliment to Batista, but nonetheless a fact that would have been foolish to ignore. Reagan was right to back authoritatian regimes when the alternative was worse.

  • Mike, kinda like backing Stalin over Hitler?

  • Not really, Joe. First, the regimes of both Hitler and Stalin were totalitarian, not authoritarian, and reasonable people can debate which regime was worse. Second, the USSR did not declare war on us; Germany did. Finally, Germany was simply the greater threat at the time. It was unsavory indeed to be Stalin’s ally, but it would have been far worse if Hitler had not chosen to make Stalin his enemy. That said, it is certainly embarrassing that neither FDR nor HST appreciated the depth of the USSR’s (and Stalin’s) evil till later than warranted.

  • The old “the enemy of my enemy is my friend” position. Still, Mike, you argue persuasively, like any good lawyer should. Kudos to Don, too, for his usually cogent analyses.

  • Thanks, Joe. Yes, sometimes the enemy of my enemy is my ally, even if not my friend. An alliance with a villain can be risky and problematic, but sometimes all options are risky and problematic in which case one must choose the least imperfect. In these cases it is important that (i) one not delude oneself as to the nature of his ally (something I think Roosevelt did, at least for too long) and (ii) others not jump to the conclusion that the alliance is predicated on any real affection for the ally.

  • He just had a press conference in which he apologized profusely. I believe a second chance is in order. Consider your forgiveness an act of love. (Note that I too escaped the same regime he did.)

The Pope in Cuba

Tuesday, March 27, AD 2012

Apparently, he’s staying busy.

SuburbanBanshee has two very good posts on the topic– the first has the great opening of “seldom have I enjoyed myself more watching a speech at an airport.”  The second one is on what he said at Mass, with the bonus of an honorary mention of the Swiss Guard Ninja Death Squad Elite.  (Which doesn’t exist.)

Have I mentioned lately that the fellow has guts?

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One Response to The Pope in Cuba

Pope to Castro: Drop Communism!

Friday, March 23, AD 2012

7 Responses to Pope to Castro: Drop Communism!

  • I have to think that THAT is what scares dictators like Castro and would-be dictators like Obama the most. Should the good Lord tarry, the Church will still stand even after their day has come and gone. Everyone from Caligula, Commodus, and onward, everyone from Robespierre, Stalin and Hitler are all gone. But the Bride of Christ still stands. Castro and Obama know their fate. And that irritates them no end.

  • “And she may still exist in undiminished vigour when some traveller from New Zealand shall, in the midst of a vast solitude, take his stand on a broken arch of London Bridge to sketch the ruins of St. Paul’s.”

    Very nearly came to pass in the person of Sir Keith Parkes. 😉

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  • Quite true Don, but for the efforts of the Defender of London and his brave pilots!

  • Lord Macauley lives! But even more so, the Church!!

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  • Cuba has a leader for life unless resigns (such as Fidel). Fidel would still be president if it wasn’t for his health.

    People, as President Obama is, at most worse case he will ONLY be president (God forbid) for four more years. That’s it. That’s why his policies must be made in such a way they can be revoked and not in place for decades to come…long after the next president comes along.

Castro Hates the Tea Party

Friday, November 19, AD 2010

An English translation of the first portion of the above video.

Fidel Castro: Comrades, our nation is completely bankrupt! We have no choice but to abandon communism!
Castro’s Aide #1, Castro’s Associates: [sigh]
Fidel Castro: I know, I know, I know… but we all knew from day one this mumbo jumbo wouldn’t fly! I’ll call Washington and tell them they won.
Castro’s Aide #1: But presidente, America tried to kill you!
Fidel Castro: Ah, they’re not so bad. They even named a street after me in San Francisco!
[Aide #2 whispers something into his ear]
Fidel Castro: It’s full of what?

Hattip to the Babalu Blog, the go to blog on the net to keep advised of the follies of the Castro regime in Cuba.  It seems the Bearded One views the Tea Party as “fascist”: 

Speaking to a group of students visiting Havana, former Cuban leader Fidel Castro accused the Tea Party of leading the United States towards “fascism.”

In his comments, Castro chided the United States as a “ruined nation” and derided the Tea Party as “extreme right.”

Castro also announced that health concerns had forced him to step down from his position as head of the Cuban Communist Party.

Castro’s exchange with the students was published in Granma, the state-run newspaper.

“I got sick and did what I had to do — delegate my powers.” Granma reported.

Castro ceded the Presidency of Cuba in 2006 after 46 years in power. He was replaced by his younger brother Raúl.

Under both brothers, Cuba has been isolated from the international community, criticized for its lack of democratic elections and for its systematic abuse of human rights.

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Well, Duh!

Thursday, September 9, AD 2010

Fidel Castro, the soon to be late dictator of Cuba, proclaims what most Cubans have known since he took over Cuba two years after my birth.  Journalist Jeffery Goldberg of the Atlantic asked him if the Cuban economic model was something he believes should be exported.  The failed baseball player said that the Cuban economic model didn’t even work for Cubans.  Go here to read the story.

The “Cuban economic model” as far as I can tell basically consisted of reducing most of the population to the status of state slaves to support the nomenklatura of the Cuban Communist party.  The system only “worked” because huge subsidies from the Soviet Union propped it up.  After the collapse of the Soviet Union and the elimination of the subsidies, the Cuban economy went into freefall as detailed here

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3 Responses to Well, Duh!