Are there reasons to believe a change in Cuba’s economic strategies is coming, or is this merely a cosmetic change in the high spheres of power?
The sale of Labiofam perfumes with names alluding to Che Guevara and Hugo Chavez caused the stir that was to be expected. The Cuban company launched these new products at the fair it recently organized. The night following the news, Cubans, for the most part unaware of the marketing strategy, saw a 180-degree turn to the situation.
It is normal for Cuba’s official press to devote more articles to the Committees for the Defense of the Revolution (CDRs) during the month of September, as the anniversary of their creation is on the 28th of the month. This commentary takes a look at their roots and relevancy today.
It was a warm morning during Cuba’s inaptly-called winter. I had almost run into a group of Americans across the street from the awe-inspiring, Gothic Sagrado Corazon church, while heading down Havana’s Reina street.
The Cuban government’s reforms continue to make slow, somewhat erratic progress and to evince a series of unique characteristics and tendencies that are food for thought. Let us recall, first, that Cuban politicians like to refer to this process as the “updating of Cuba’s economic system.”
The Cuban government-Party-State has acknowledged the poor performance of the country’s economy during the first half of the year. Criticisms among Cuban economists are more frequent. There is a consensus about the need to free Cuba’s productive forces.
The slow implementation of economic reforms in Cuba is justified with the argument that the government does not want to make any mistakes. Every step taken is allegedly preceded by a pilot test used to evaluate the consequences of the change. This is doubtless a new way of doing things in the country, in which concrete results matter more than inspiration. Many Cubans, however, have grown impatient, because the waiting period is sometimes longer than what they deem necessary.
With jerseys like the one that batter Stayler Hernandez is wearing, Industriales appears to have become a living billboard for Cuba’s Bucanero beer. The repercussions of this should not be taken lightly. Our government’s official journalists, often very concerned about the spread of lifestyles based on consumerism and frivolity, could well take on an interesting reflection on this matter.
How’s this for a juxtaposition on how nations respond to a global health catastrophe. Check out these two headlines from yesterday’s news: ‘Cuba sends doctors to Ebola areas’ and ‘U.S. to deploy 3,000 troops as Ebola crisis worsens’.
I am expressing a conviction that is shared by many others. Trampling on the secular and impartial nature of the State and the public media is trampling on the freedoms of all citizens of all creeds. Such freedoms are curtailed when one religious message is imposed on those who do not want to receive it, through a television broadcaster that people pay for with their taxes and work.