I have been "lurking" all along. Allow me to share the following.

I find that to pass judgement on a revolution it is necessary to see it in historical perspective.  What led to the Cuban revolution of 1959? Did the revolution attain its objectives? What happened to the class structure of the Cuban society? How has the Cuban society evolved since? What have been its achievements? What are its current problem? 

That is why I offered a number of historical writings a while back as a good staring point to seriously engage with the problem of understanding the Cuban revolution. There is no short answer to what Cuba is and categories like "socialist", "state capitalist", "independent," etc. do not help much because they attempt to fix things at a given point and do not capture the motion of the Cuban society. 

As I noted earlier, there are many facets of lives in which the Cuban people have advanced way better than the rest of the "less developed countries."  These are due to their participation and their leadership. I posted the following on the occasion of the Mother's Day--Cuban leads the "Mother's Index for the "less developed countries." How can this and dozen other world scale achievements be possible in a dictatorship that Washington says rules that country (after all, a majority of Third World countries are run by dictators and autocrats--so why they don't show any progress for their people)? 

The Mother's Index Report


Kamran

PS. I very much liked Claudia's remarks about the other "discussion" that is going on. We would be all better off if we follow her wisdom.
On Fri, May 13, 2011 at 11:13 AM, Larry Romsted <[log in to unmask]> wrote:
Note:  I changed the Subject line

Mitchel:

OK.  But if there is only one primary source of news in Cuba and no opposition news, then that is a serious problem.  Makes democratic socialism difficult if not impossible

I realize that their resources are more scarce than ours, but how much more scarce and how it affects information distribution I do not know.

Larry

From: Mitchel Cohen <[log in to unmask]>
Reply-To: Science for the People Discussion List <[log in to unmask]>
Date: Fri, 13 May 2011 13:45:49 -0400
To: <[log in to unmask]>
Subject: Re: provocateurs and Stalinists

Hi Larry,

I didn't mean my question about allocation of scarce resources to be rhetorical. It's a central decision of all (especially poor, or "poorer than the U.S.") countries.

Cuba makes such allocations based on very different principles than capitalist ones.

Mitchel




At 01:39 PM 5/13/2011, Larry Romsted wrote:
Mitchel:

Does no good to ask someone, me, a rhetorical question about something that they do not know about.  I have tried to be clear in a number of emails that I am ignorant about Cuba society.

Please provide information or information sources about MANY independent medias.

Larry

From: Mitchel Cohen < [log in to unmask]>
Reply-To: Science for the People Discussion List < [log in to unmask]>
Date: Fri, 13 May 2011 13:21:23 -0400
To: < [log in to unmask]>
Subject: Re: provocateurs and Stalinists

At 11:35 AM 5/13/2011, Larry Romsted wrote:
Sam:

I cannot evaluate what is happening in Cuba in terms of social structures, but they probably need an independent media, does not need to be corporate, just independent, and independent political parties.  Is that possible?

Larry

Why would you think that they don't have MANY "independent" medias?

Some questions:
Where is the paper to print a newspaper to come from? (Who should have priority to have access to that resource, only those who could afford to pay for purchasing paper and producing it, as it is here in the U.S.?)

The question of allocation of resources is very real. It's ONE OF the reasons for Cuba setting up sanitariums in the past for people with AIDS. (I am not saying that there was not also problems with the policy of requiring people who tested positive for HIV to move to a sanitarium. But it did allow the BEST nutrition and care to be provided at centralized locations, where given Cuba's circumstances it could not have been provided scattershot, all over the place. As a result, Cuba has the lowest incidence of AIDS in the world, I believe.)

Mitchel


From: S E Anderson <[log in to unmask] >
Reply-To: Science for the People Discussion List < [log in to unmask]>
Date: Fri, 13 May 2011 08:38:24 -0400
To: < [log in to unmask]>
Subject: Re: provocateurs and Stalinists

SftP Folk,

I just got back from a week in Cuba. Haven't been there in many years. I was there during the collapse of the Soviet Union and a little while after that.... and over those years, kept in touch with ordinary folk we befriended as well as key party and government folk.

I remember the US Left back in those terrible days of postSoviet Cuba fiercely and arrogantly criticizing the Cubans for beginning to abandon socialism and head on down the capitalist road with their push for increasing tourism and attempts at what seemed to be privatizing farming. These Lefties were predicting the capitulation of the Cuban Communist Party to capitalism within a few years.

Obviously it did not happen. Obviously the Cubans still have a ton of social, economic and cultural issues to deal with. And obviously, after 50 years and almost three generations of folk, you have a different mindset among ordinary Cubans than you have here in the US over that same period of time. I believe that Cuban mindset is a better mindset to deal with the protracted struggle for equity and democracy than what has developed here-- even among the white Left here in the US.

I ask a simple question to my Leftist Comrades: What Should the Cuban leadership and people do to advance Socialism in Cuba? We criticize but offer nothing to help them along the Socialist Road.

Can we- the tiny discombulated and atomized Left in the US (and the West) be so arrogant as to just stand and criticize as all-knowing socialist gods?

In Struggle,

Sam Anderson

amamamamamamamamamamamamamaam
On May 11, 2011, at 4:01 PM, Larry Romsted wrote:

Mitchel:

Ok. All generalizations are wrong (including this one). :)

My generalization about the view of Cuba by members of this list is now wrong.

Sigh.  Hard to generalize without taking a poll and that will probably make things more complicated not less.

Larry

From: Mitchel Cohen < [log in to unmask]>
Reply-To: Science for the People Discussion List < [log in to unmask]>
Date: Wed, 11 May 2011 15:46:46 -0400
To: < [log in to unmask]>
Subject: Re: provocateurs and Stalinists

At 03:33 PM 5/11/2011, Larry Romsted wrote:
Yes, but I think you mis read this list.  Virtually all the who respond about Cuba think of it as state capitalist, not including myself. I don't have a full understand about Cuba

Hi Larry,
Unlike the USSR, I do not think of Cuba as state capitalist. Cuba's system is a form of socialism.

Mitchel





http://www.MitchelCohen.com


Ring the bells that still can ring,  Forget your perfect offering.
There is a crack, a crack in everything, That's how the light gets in. 
~ Leonard Cohen









http://www.MitchelCohen.com


Ring the bells that still can ring,  Forget your perfect offering.
There is a crack, a crack in everything, That's how the light gets in. 
~ Leonard Cohen










http://www.MitchelCohen.com


Ring the bells that still can ring,  Forget your perfect offering.
There is a crack, a crack in everything, That's how the light gets in. 
~ Leonard Cohen