"Castro dead" rumor fades; "Castro gay" rumor rises

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O to be Lucky Pierre in the middle of this sandwich:

El Jefe is bombarding Cuba's official media of clips of himself with Venezuelan Huey Long Hugo Chavez, dispelling rumors that he is dead or comatose and paving the way for his 140-year reign, a term of office that ominously promises plenty of footage of hotblooded Caribbean boys in winter. The full TV clip of the two world leaders spread out in scarlet bedclothes is slightly less compromising. Slightly.

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  1. You guys don’t understand; being called a fag isn’t considered an insult in my country.

  2. sssssuper!!!!!!!

  3. “It works for the very poorest in society and even in the United States a sizeable portion of the population starves.”

    No one starves in the United States except due to mental illness or neglect by parents/guardians.

  4. JT Barrie,

    I think you forgot the part about the rivers flowing with chocolate. Seriously though, if the Cuban people are so glad to have Castro in charge, why does he need the extensive police state apparatus? I’m sure it’s the US’ fault, but I’m just wondering how.

  5. JT Barrie sounds like an apologist, but we should keep in mind that the most deceptive spins usually have an element of truth, and that’s what makes them so deceptive.

    First, I have no doubt that the guy Castro replaced was a thug. Revolutions don’t usually happen because everything is just peachy. The most likely time for things to get worse is when they’re already bad.

    Second, from what I’ve heard, Cuba actually does have a decent number of doctors with very good training. Now, before anybody calls me an apologist, keep in mind that even the Commies can usually manage to do at least one thing right…they just get everything else wrong. The Soviets had a space program and a very good physics community (at least in theoretical physics, which is cheaper). It’s not unheard of for Communists to concentrate meager resources into one single area of endeavor, and then use their successes for propaganda purposes.

    The problem in Cuba is not the quality of its doctors, it’s the suckitude of everything else, thanks to Communism.

    I have a hunch that somebody will misinterpret this post and accuse me of defending Communism. Oh, well.

  6. It works for the very poorest in society and even in the United States a sizeable portion of the population starves

    If by “starve” you mean “eats themselves into morbid obesity” then I agree with you.

  7. did any of you guys see andy garcia’s “the lost city” came out on dvd about the same time castro religuished power to his brother by coincidance. it was interesting not a perfect movie but after gag inducing depiction of a christ like che from “motorcycle diaries” it was a refreshing alternative.

  8. JT Barrie:

    the guy he replaced was a murdering, torturing, capitalist thug

    “Capitalist thug”?? I’d be quite surprised to learn that Batista was a fan of, and actually permitted, economic liberty.

    The Cubans remaining do not want a return to the crony capitalism of the Batista era.

    The only way that a “crony capitalism” can survive is with government coercion to protect the cronies from competition. This, of course, is not capitalism. It’s more like fascist economics. Capitalism permits free access to the marketplace and that’s just Hell on the cronies. What ever you call the competitors who are able to carve out a market-share in a free capitalistic market place, it sure isn’t “cronies”.

  9. Castro and Kim Ir Sen the rocks of communism.
    Live after dead.

  10. [Castro] only turned commie after the U.S. and the CIA pulled their support.

    This is an old lefty trope that’s never been convincing. Isn’t it much more likely that Castro simply hid his Marxism to avoid spooking the U.S. and others? Revolutionaries have been known to lie.

    Batista was a pretty standard-issue Latin strongman of the day, but he wasn’t a totalitarian dictator like Castro. To claim, as JT does, that Castro has made the country better off is absurd. 50 years ago Cuba was one of the richest (if not the richest) country in Latin America, and now it’s one of the poorest. That should settle the issue.

  11. Ken: those were the options the Cuban people were given. The US certainly didn’t put much pressure on Batista to engage in democratic reforms. It was a US-backed dictator or a Soviet-backed dictator and, despite the efforts of Batista apologists, the decision they made was probably a rational one.

    Really, I couldn’t care less about the history here. My point is that Castro is the only option Castro gave the Cuban people once he was in power. …thousands of Cubans since then have decided they’d rather jump in the ocean with an inner tube than spend another day in Castro’s Cuba. Maybe they’re just the tip of the iceberg?

    Maybe there are thousands more who’d be willing to take less drastic measures–like, given the opportunity, voting someone else into power. …Batista’s been dead for twenty-odd years. I promise–an election wouldn’t be between Castro and Batista’s corpse.

    History’s a fascinating subject–really it is. …but the choice hasn’t been between Castro and Batista for some forty years. …and the suggestion that Batista would have been worse just doesn’t cut it.

  12. Great pic. But hey, sometimes a cigar is just a cigar…

  13. I’m surprised nobody has mentioned how a large part of the reason Cubans are so poor is the embargo. Are we really still concerned that Cuba is going to be the incursion point for a Communist invasion of the United States (or whatever the stupid-ass reason is for the embargo)?

    Oh, right, it’s politicians from both sides of the aisle kissing the asses of Cuban emigres (nothing against the emigres, but they sure do seem to wield a disproportionate amoount of political stroke in south Florida).

  14. JT Barrie:

    “the guy he replaced was a murdering, torturing, capitalist thug”

    so, I guess that it should be noted that it was okay that Richard Nixon was a liar and committed numerous illegal/un-constitutional acts because the guy he replaced (LBJ) was just as bad, if not worse!

  15. JD,

    Your points are all true. However, when the world’s largest buyer, which is also your closest potential customer, won’t buy from you, your costs go way up. I’m certainly not saying that ending the embargo would cure what ails Cuba, but it is, as I said, a large part of the reason Cubans are so poor. Obviously, the largest part is Castro and his policies, but unless we are willing to depose him, the next best thing would be ending the embargo.

  16. Batista’s been dead for twenty-odd years. I promise–an election wouldn’t be between Castro and Batista’s corpse.

    Actually, against Castro, Batista’s corpse might not do badly in a one on one election.

    Hey, I just thought of a great premise for a zombie movie. It’s sort of a Moon over Parador meets Weekend at Bernie’s with a Shaun of the Dead twist!

  17. I’m surprised nobody has mentioned how a large part of the reason Cubans are so poor is the embargo.

    True, but while I’m not saying it’s the case here, but it always cracks me up when Medea Benjamin and other lefties say this. Their argument boils down to: “Castro was good for Cuba because he stopped capitalist exploitation, but Cuba is poor because the main capitalist exploiter doesn’t engage in free market activities with us any more.”

  18. Headlines don’t get any better than this!!!!

  19. Well, if he’s gay, he wouldn’t be the first closet-case who viciously oppressed his fellow homosexuals.??

    -jcr

  20. Cuba has a highly educated population with a surplus of trained medical people that wouldn’t have happened under Batista.

    No doubt the trains run on time as well. That is, if they still have trains in Cuba.

  21. I’m surprised no one has made a reference to Castro Street.

    Castro: The Americans are not so bad. They even named a street after me in San Fransisco. [Aide whispers in ear] It’s full of WHAT?

  22. I love it.

    Even the commies defending Castro can only muster a “Well, Batista would have been worse!”

    The only reason that Communism’s undead presence is still even extant in the 21st century is because Fidel Castro and Kim Jong Il haven’t quite stopped twitching yet.

  23. “The only reason that Communism’s undead presence is still even extant in the 21st century is because Fidel Castro and Kim Jong Il haven’t quite stopped twitching yet.”

    The following is a list of current communist countries

    China

    Cuba

    Laos

    North Korea

    Vietnam

    You can argue about how “communist” they really are (as you could have with the USSR), but I think that accounts for a pretty good bit above 1 billion humans on the planet.

  24. What mediageek said. And what jf said.

    jf,

    A lack of favoring free trade should certainly undermine one’s claim to be a libertarian.

  25. your average Cuban on the street (the ones i chatted up/drank with/rodearound in cars w/ pretty ballerinas with/smoked dope with) got a better handle on how the world works than most people I interact with here.
    they ALL knew that the US wishes them ill….that the US dosnt want to make them another Florida (bad enough) but another Honduras.
    So- if you want to compare Cuba with some place to show how eeeeeeevil it is, compare it with its peers. El Salvador. Guatemala. Jamaica. Haiti. Nicaragua, now that we “won”.
    EVERY ONE of those places is a repressive hellhole. A “free market” “democratic” hellhole. Cuba, without the schools, doctors, clean water, & death squads.
    Cuba will indeed cast off the ossified bones of the Party. About every person I talked to did. But they WONT willingly become Honduras. And that will stick in a lot of craws…..in both Miami & Washington….and, probably, here.

  26. Mutt, you and those Cubans seem to have fallen prey to that idiotic leftist idea that capitalists want other people and other countries to be poor, which is a paranoid delusion. Capitalists make more money from rich people and rich countries, so they’d be happy if Cuba were a little Canada with palm trees.

  27. Great pic. All it needs is to be in green-glow nightvision ala the Paris Hilton tape.

    Weren’t Fidel and Che gay lovers? What is up with that?

  28. Mutt, you and those Cubans seem to have fallen prey to that idiotic leftist idea that capitalists want other people and other countries to be poor,

    Ummmm. Im talking about oligarchies. Fact of the matter is, the “capitalists” of latin america, and, increasingly, here, have little to do with your delightfully childlike view of some bright, shiney, theoryworld. … It certainly has nothing to do with Latin America.
    It has worked in the US , more or less, with various failures: the Gilded Age, the frauds that led to the Crash of 29, the massive export of US wealth to foriegn interests for short term gain……the world, as it is, isnt paras from textbooks. If El Salvador, etc is an advertisement for the wonders of captitalism, Im glad Im armed.

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