Wednesday, November 7, 2007

Odds and ends

  • You learn something new every day: the UN has a Special Rapporteur on the Right to Food. He just spent ten days in Cuba, studied the food situation, and saw an “immediate, dramatic, total” need to increase farm productivity. According to Reuters’ paraphrase of his comments, he says changes may be coming within months to “increase the scope of private cooperatives at the expense of state farms.” He also visited two prisons, but to look into the food situation, not human rights.

  • A Miami Herald editorial calls for changes in U.S. policy to allow greater contact with Cuba in the interest of promoting change in Cuba. The editorial cites Eastern Europeans such as Havel and Walesa, whom President Bush praises for their assessment of the human rights situation in Cuba, but who favor different policies.


leftside said...

The main thrust of the UN Food Reps. comments on Cuba was about how well it does to ensure food security, despite the obstacles. He said Cuba does this better than any other developing country, and that he did not see "a single malnourished person" in Cuba.

Also, it is noteworthy that this was the first UN Rights representative allowed on the island in 10 years. This is a direct result of the halting of the political special scrutiny Cuba had been getting on the old Human Rights Commission.

The UN Rapporteur also criticized the US for the embargo (which expressly violates the right to food) and for not recognizing the existence of social, economic and cultural human rights (such as the right to food, work or housing). He also noted that throughout the world, more than 854 million people go hungry. Not one of them is Cuban.

Roque said more UN Rights reporters are gonna be allowed in later.

BTW - the food situation in Cuban jails is one of the major human rights issues anti-Cuban sources reoutinely cite. So the fact that he did not comment negatively on the issue, should tell everyone something.

leftside said...

From the Posada case, it appears the Government has come to the realization that having him running loose selling paintings is a major embarrasment. Better to get him locked up for a couple years until he dies on some bogus immigration charge... where he can't talk. The 64-page brief makes some interesting reading, ripping Judge Cardone's decision to absolute legal shreds. Remember, she was appointed by a Republican and was a Latin American studies major... 1 plus 1 = 2. But ultimately, the Bush Administration is to blame for never invoking their right to charge Carriles with an immigrant warrant, or label him a terrorist. They just didn't count on someone wackier than them letting Posada free.

Fantomas said...

that UN rappaport man is a well documented communist who went to Cuba to play games ...

leftside please use more common sense before opening your big mouth


Were you born in a fucking farm in Idaho?

please tell me

leftside said...

You went straight to the "he's a Communist" line, a foul mouth and baseless attacks... nice. Get back to me when you want to argue ideas.

Anonymous said...

leftside, I would think the last thing you want to argue is ideas.
FACT: socialism, communism, whatever you want to call it has produced nothing but death and misery wherever it has been imposed.
FACT: The free market and open political systems have recorded the most advances in quality of life wherever they have been allowed to function. Is it a perfect system? No, but it sure beats the alternative.

Unknown said...

You state that Cuba allowed this imbecile to go inspect things on the island. Have you ever asked youself why they choose and pick who they allow?
Why haven't they ever allowed the Red Cross to go see the political prisoners?
If there isn't a malnourished Cuban on the island then what's all the crying about from the Cuban Government?? Gees the US is its biggest food supplier, what's the deal?

Go check out the state deparment's list of all the goodies bought by Cuba last year,then tell me why the Cuban government can't even fill the ration cards for every Cuban. Try to also keep in mind that the US is not Cuba's only supplier, remember Cuba also receives thousands of barrels of oil daily.

In your zeal to defend anything that is left liening like you clearly are, you're willing to overlook any abuses made by said party. Yet people like you, stomp and scream when a right side dictatorship does the axact same things you're willing to overlook in this case.

Forget what side of the political spectrum you're on for a minute. How would you like it if you were condemed to 20 plus years in a jail with common criminals because you have publicly expressed how different your thoughts are to President Bush's.

Do you favor the rights you enjoy in the US just because they defend you? Do you believe that your point of view is the only one that should benefit from those rights and anyone having a different point of view should rot in a jail?

You continue to overlook one public nonarguable thing, the same president for 48 years, no other political parties, no independent press. Is all that ok, just because they're leftist?

Anonymous said...

Bravo Lori!

Anonymous said...

if the embargo is a failure why the tirany still insist to end?

if cuba as the envoy of united nation says have not problem with hungry, why the left insist that people comtinue sending money to nbuy in the secondary market,reserved for dollars?
why the left insist to travel to cuba for better comunication and the cubans are not allow to use the internet?

leftside said...

Tranquillo, Socialism is the only hope of mankind, like it or not. Capitalism has no other endgame but the destruction of the planet, not to mention massive inequality, hunger, disease and death. It can offer nothing to those 2 billion people on the planet without money to buy the basic necessities. It leaves a million without even basic shelter in the richest country in the world.... 50 million unable to see a doctor. It is a gross system, as Europe and most of the rest of the world have already figured out. Ask the voters of Latin America how free markets worked for the last 20-30 years down there, or look at the statistics. Ask the Russians if the dissultion of the USSR was a mistake. The neoliberal experiment has failed miserably. Capitalism works for the winners only. That is its very essence. Where it worked somewhat - in Chile, or Taiwan for example - the US made it work by granting massive trade subsidies.

Lori, Cuba has said it will now cooperate with UN human rights reporters, so this is just the beginning, now that the discrimination Cuba had been placed under has been removed. The Red Cross used to inspect Cuban prisons all the time.

Are you really asking why Cuba "cries" over the embargo, Toricelli and Helms-Burton, who's express purpose is to starve the Cubans into submission? It has not worked, but that is only because of the remarkable priority Cuba places on food security and the organization of Cuban society.

There is no one in jail for simply criticizing Fidel Castro. This is a lie. Most were caught red handed with their links to the US Government. Most were even paid, received materials, or instructions from this Government, which has an express mission of regime change and has committed terrorism on Cuban soil. Give me a name of someone who stayed clear from the US Government and I will reconsider.

Anonymous said...

Lori, I feel close to Leftside in more than one point. But I also understand what you said.
I don't like dictatorship, but I don't like Latinamerican democracies either. I don't like Castro but I do like Fidel. I don't like people being sent to jail for opposing by peaceful means a given political system, but the US would do (and does!) exactly the same when there is a real threat. Just take a look at the Patriot Act and the way it undermines civil rights that were taken as granted. Why? Because the US is under treat. And if such a threat were stronger and closer, civil rights were further reduced as has happened in Cuba. Do you need me to convince you that the US has been openly hostile to Cuba from the very beginning of the Revolution? Do you need me to convince you that the so called freedom and democracy they use to justify that policy is just an excuse if we are supposed to accept the FACT (this is for you, “Tranquilo” boy) that they defend such things abroad as a function of their interests that are always big and hegemonic? Democracy, the one that function acceptably such as the US, Canadian, and Europeans democracies, is a luxury of the powerful. When the weak tries it is almost always to get further ruined.
It doesn't matter that the US is an important food seller, if we can not sell to them, for example, our touristic services. For pure geographical reasons we are supposed to have a fluid economical relation with such a powerful country. But the history of the relations between US and Latinamerica in general, and Cuba in particular, has been one of US interventionism that weakens our already weak societies and favors a national elite that cares just about their narrow interests no matter if that requires to sell the country. How do you explain that in El Chaco, a province of such a rich country as Argentina people die of starvation today? What Ziegler said was that such a thing doesn't happen in Cuba and that's fucking true!!! The tropical storm swept across Dominican Republic, Haiti and Cuba. There are more than 100 dead people. Just one is a Cuban. The quality of the Cuban Civil Defense has being appreciated at almost any international forum related to this subject. The list of achievements is longer. And we are poor and embargoed by the one who should be our natural partner. Again: partner not ruler.
I do want to listen to “Porno para Ricardo” in the Revolution Square, but not with a background of kids working from very early when they should be in the school, or farmers dying because a Hurricane went through a country ruled by a government with a weak political will.

Unknown said...


OH you dont'want kids working from very early, then what do you call "la escuela del campo"?

Why aren't you complaining that as a Cuban you can't enjoy the same places tourists in your country enjoy? Why aren't you as bitter about having a government tell you what you can eat or have a right to eat?

To further clarify why people in Cuba do not starve to death is because they fight for every morsel they can find, and you should know that. They don't die of starvation because of the government, they eat in spite of the government. They wheel and deal outside and above the law to get food on their table, the governmet has no hand in that except to make everything that they do unlawful and worhty of a stiff jail sentence.

The US has absolutely no reason to lift the embargo, one - Cuba owes US citizens for properties confiscated, sencond - Cuba doesn't pay its debts - third and last but not least, Cuba survived many years with the embargo in place without a peep, this, I'll refresh your memory was during the time the Soviet Union was Cuba's ruler, not partner, or better yet, when Cuba was a Soviet colony.

There is no reason for you to use profanity unless you have no point to make and believe that by using profanity someone will believe you have a point.


Anonymous said...


I think that you suffer from the same blindness you accuse Leftside and now me when you:
-Compare "escuelas al campo" with millions of kids working from early ages to support themselves and their families.
- Deny the success of the Cuban government in avoiding extreme poverty and malnutrition. What is true is that the government can changes policies, and will, to improve the quality and quantity of what people in Cuba eat. That's true.
- Fidel Castro has been mentioning the embargo and the US hostility since ever. Just read. The US has not been hostile because of lost properties which included, by the way, half of OUR lands. The hostility is because of the symbol of independence Cuba is. It is true that opposition to the embargo has grown after the soviet collapse for obvious reasons.
- We had USSR as partners. The idea of a soviet master of a Cuban colony is just another distortion. For sure we had to made concessions of our sovereignty like supporting the invasion of Czechoslovakia and Afghanistan but we gain a lot in independence. That was sad. However, the relation with the Soviets was an example of partnership. And I would say we had the upper hand almost all the time.

We probably cannot get closer. That is the everyday situation of Cubans at both sides of spectrum.
Good luck.

Unknown said...

The one who mentioned kids working from an early age was you. I only asked you why you had forgotten la escuela del campo, because in that case it was government enforced. the Cuban government enforced it, what a way to look out for children.

Yes Cuba had the Soviet Union pumping millions of dollars daily into the island, and Cuba still has an unmountable debt pending with Russia and not to mention many other countries.

Why would I, being an American citizen support a position where my country would come out losing, which would be the case if they were to extend credit to the Cuban government.

You are stating untruths by saying there isn't extreme poverty in Cuba when In fact there is extreme poverty in Cuba. Just visit Bayamo, Las Tunas, La Vigia, Cabaiguan, Manicaragua. People do not have running water. They have dirt floors and they have out houses. The children there have stomach parasites. Yes that is common with third world countries, but do not deny the truth, there is EXTREME poverty.

There are people in an around the Eastern provinces that have to hunt Cayman, and Jutia to survive because the government provides nothing for them, they live in makeshift wooden shacks, made with old furniture parts.

"No hay peor ciego, que el que no quiera ver"

I've chosen to agree that we disagree, I believe you may be more blind than Leftside, although this is the first time I've accused you of anything, my first post was directed at Leftside.

Go on accepting the apartheid the Cuban government has on the Cuban. Go on accepting Cubans as second class citizens in their own country. Go on accepting a government that believes it has a right to tell you what to think and believe in. Go on rationalizing that and everything else. After all it is your God given right to believe whatever you choose to believe, too bad Cubans do not have that right.

Juan Cuellar said...

Y se callaron. To much truth to handle.

Fantomas said...

estos enviados del regimen no tienen argumentos

none whatsoever ellos supieran el ridiculo que hacen

si se miraran en un espejo

Rey Juan Carlos perdonadlos

Sharpshooter said...

you are wasting your time preaching to Leftside. He will never understand the nature of Communism even if it stares him in the face. He continues to deny the human rights abuses in Cuba just because he believes in Fidel and the gang as saviours of Cuba. Eveytime he refres to the opposition he refers to them as "the anti-Cuba forces". In other words anyone who disagress with the tyranny is anti-Cuban. He has melded Cuba, Revolution and Fidel in his mind and to him they are one and the same. If you oppose the Communist regime you are anti-Cuban. Leftside will never understand the nature of the regime until the day they cart him away with his hands behind his back and tell him to hut the hell up or else. Although knowing Leftside he will be on the other side of the fence enforcing the abuses of the Communists more than likely as a member of the Security services. These kind of people always end up as guards or minions Secret Police agents. They will justify any human rights violations, or any death (as he has done countless times here) as for the "common good" and necesary for the Revolution in the face of his enemies. As we say in Cuba, there is no worse blind man than that one who does not want to see. Leftside advocates the type of Government he will never tolerate for himself or his family, but you see, this is good for the Cubans, of course, but not for him. Otherwise, he would be living in Cuba putting his money whre his mouth is, and he does not. He lives far away from Cuba safe and secure in capitalist, imperialist California. In other words, a socialist (a communist, same thing) who prefers to live in a capitalist society. Webster definition for this despicable position is found under H in the dictionary: HIPOCRISY.

leftside said...

You are right Agustin. A socialist's job is to move where socialism already exists, not to fight for it where it is needed most. Thanks for helping me to see the light. One day, when I am done fighting and see no hope, maybe I will live in Cuba. But with a 20% approval rating of Congress, a plunging dollar, a housing crisis, falling wages and inability of capitalism to solve basic problems of humanity, things have never looked so rips for change.

Sharpshooter said...

Mr. Leftside,
Keep dreaming. My advice to you is to move to Cuba now while the wonderful form of Govt you so wholeheartly defend still exists. You might no get another chance in a couple of years to enjoy such a panacea of a govt. on the island. The writing is on the wall and the communists know it, that is why you see such luminaries of the Revolution such as Che's daughter, adquiring and seeking to have other passports other than the Cuban one. The time for reckoning is coming and they know it. But you still have a chance to make your dream come true. My advice is to take advantage of that chance to enjoy the socialist life style now. Don't wait too much longer.

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