J Robert Smith
- Feb. 24, 2020
- 3 min read
“We’re very opposed to the authoritarian nature of Cuba but you know, it’s unfair to simply say everything is bad. You know? When Fidel Castro came into office, you know what he did? He had a massive literacy program. Is that a bad thing? Even though Fidel Castro did it?” Sanders told Anderson Cooper.
Castro’s End: With Fidel Castro’s death at 90, the encomiums are rolling in, especially from what remains of the American Big Media. But in fact, Castro during his 58 years of dictatorship was an evil man, a communist who tortured, killed and imprisoned with no remorse, a tyrant who tore a once-beautiful country apart and sent its finest citizens into exile.
— Investors’ Business Daily, November 26, 2016
THE QUICK TAKE
Bernie Sanders continues to soft-peddle the sheer evil of notorious leftist dictator, Fidel Castro, and the system he spawned in Cuba. In his 60 Minutes interview on Sunday night, Sanders mildly characterized Cuba’s communist system as having an “authoritarian nature.” Teaching Cubans to read and write is a good thing, claimed Sanders. That is, literacy is good for Cubans not murdered, imprisoned, or exiled by Castro and his brother Raul.
Estimates vary, but the number of Cubans that Castro killed and imprisoned (with torture often added for good measure) runs into the tens of thousands. Cubans driven from their homeland soars past 1.4 million, according to the Migration Policy Institute. That’s just shy of the population of San Antonio metro.
And spreading literacy amounts to what when you’re denied the freedom to read what you want by a tyrannical government?
Castro maintained his dictatorship for about 60 years, thanks to his iron-fisted rule. He tolerated no opposition, be that from liberty or human rights activists among his subjects. Freedom and human rights go hand-in-hand.
From the Investors’ Business Daily article:
He [Castro] murdered thousands upon thousands. The late R.J. Rummel, a University of Hawaii professor who tracked mass-killings by governments around the world, estimated as many as 141,000 people were murdered by the Castro regime. And that was just through 1987. Since then, of course, thousands more have been killed.
As to Castro’s vaunted successes, we find more disinformation than fact. For decades, propaganda was spread by Castro’s leftist apologists and dupes in the West. Michael Moore’s praise of Cuban healthcare is a recent example.
Cuban healthcare, long claimed has proof that socialized medicine works, is rudimentary at best. Hospitals for the proletariat are primitive – and filthy. Check out this You Tube post wryly entitled “Got to Love Hospitals in Cuba.”
From the Acton Institute, November 30, 2016:
Most Americans wouldn’t even take their family pets, much less a family member, to be treated in the hospitals the average Cuban has to endure. [snip]
Healthcare is also tiered, with foreigners and Cuban government elites receiving far better treatment. Average Cubans are left with something closer to “band aids and aspirin” care.
As to socialist economics, Cuba has been a basket case. Castro always blamed Cuba’s economic woes on the U.S. embargo. But Cuba received tens of billions in economic aid from the Soviets for decades. Until the collapse of the Venezuelan economy (thanks to its socialist policies), Cuba was aid dependent of Chavez and Maduro.
Castro had – and his successors have – the freedom to trade with most every other nation. But average Cubans chronically suffer shortages of food and other essentials – like soap.
From the New York Times, May 11, 2019:
HAVANA — The Cuban government has begun widespread rationing of chicken, eggs, rice, beans, soap and other basic products in the face of a grave economic crisis.
Yet, time and again, we hear Bernie Sanders sing the praises of Cuba as a place where socialism works. You don’t have to be literate to know that Sanders is a snake oil salesman.
What do you think? Weigh in!