Wednesday, September 18, 2013

Odds and ends

  • Reuters: Robertico Carcasses, son of jazz musician Bobby Carcasses, drew flak from the Cuban government when during a concert he called for free access to information and direct popular election of the Cuban President.  Singer-songwriter Silvio Rodriguez came to his defense and it appears that Robertico may be getting out of hot water.  Carcasses is also in favor of ending the U.S. embargo and releasing the four remaining members of the “Cuban Five.”

  • In CubaEncuentro, General Rafael del Pino, the highest-ranking Cuban military defector, calls on Cuban Americans in Congress to do the right thing and pull the plug on TV Marti.

  • IPS reports on cost-consciousness coming to the Cuban health care system, which has cut its workforce by one sixth (nearly 100,000 personnel) and nearly doubled the number of family doctor offices in the past four years.

  • Conservative columnist George F. Will chides the CIA for resisting releasing the final volume of its own history of the Bay of Pigs debacle, arguing that it would be good for the country and for the U.S. government to ponder its lessons.  Good for the National Security Archive for fighting in court to get it released.

  • Herald: Florida Governor Rick Scott, who shamelessly played to both sides regarding the Florida law that bans state government and Florida local governments from doing business with companies that do business with Cuba, has given up the fight.  Setting aside Miami’s foreign policy prerogatives, federal courts have deemed the law unconstitutional.

  • EFE: Cuban tour operators will begin selling the services of private restaurants and bed-and-breakfasts, Tourism Ministry official Jose Manuel Bisbe announced.

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