Michael Totten At World Affairs: ‘Cuba: To Embargo Or Not’

Full piece here.

‘In a non-communist country where such a basic product is in short supply, somebody would mass-produce it and sell it. Soap-making doesn’t require nuclear physics. You can make it at home. Google “soap recipe” and you’ll see how easy it is. But Cuba is a communist country where private commerce is banned. If you make stuff and sell stuff, you might become “rich” and “bourgeois,” and the authorities will send you to prison.

That’s why Cuba is poor. Lifting the embargo would have little or no effect on such tyrannical imbecility.’

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8 thoughts on “Michael Totten At World Affairs: ‘Cuba: To Embargo Or Not’

  1. I did not realize it was that bad. I know a gal who is here on her husband’s student visa. She does not have a work permit so she makes one off women’s clutch bags and can’t make enough of them. I wonder if she is illegally running a business. Heck, she invented her own job. Nothing wrong with that. Now to make it more interesting this gal is a Saudi national.

    • Ron,

      Thanks for sharing.

      As long as she eventually gets herself straight with the law, I don’t have any problem if folks like that want to stay and make a life here. They’re welcome.

      I doubt she’d have the same opportunities in the Kingdom of Saud.

      As for Cuba, I’d like to see changes, but we’ve got a guy doing business on our behalf who’s doing a lot of business with people we may not be able to do business with…if ya get my meaning.

      • In Saudi Arabia, she couldn’t do a thing. I don’t see how a person that creates their own job is taking a job away from someone else. I don’t know if she is inside or outside the law. Perhaps this highlights the injustice of legalizing 5 million illegal immigrants by fiat why many others with better stories get to struggle.

      • Ron,

        I’m with you. Shes the kind of person we want here, and she has fewer options where she came from. She’s doing for herself and may do for others. We’re getting a lot of the incentives wrong.

      • It is going to take some time to work things out with Cuba. They need to have a mixed economy like China. the Chinese call it pink, not completely red anymore. Not that the Chinese are choir boys…

      • Ron,

        Gradualism isn’t a bad idea, Cuba’s economy was walled-off and pegged to Moscow, and they’ve had two solid waves of emigration, and a steady stream since. But the same delusional revolutionaries are still in charge even if they make some gradual and grudging changes.

        Tourism, sugar and some music and the arts? What are they going to export?

        As for industries and jobs in the private sector…tourism, biotech, basic entrepreneurship for even things like soap, auto repair etc once there’s some freedoms?

        I suppose we’ll see…

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