Patterico's Pontifications

4/9/2013

Beyonce and Jay-Z Had Official Permission to Travel to Cuba

Filed under: General — Patterico @ 6:58 am

Why, it was part of a cultural exchange:

A visit by American pop star Beyonce and rapper husband Jay-Z to Havana last week was a cultural trip that was fully licensed by the U.S. Treasury Department, a source familiar with the itinerary said on Monday.

The longstanding U.S. trade embargo against Cuba prevents most Americans from traveling to the communist-led island without a license granted by the U.S. government.

Some lawmakers are not happy:

In a letter dated on Friday, reports Reuters, U.S. Representatives Ileana Ros-Lehtinen and Mario Diaz-Balart, asked Adam Szubin, director of the Office of Foreign Assets Control, for “information regarding the type of license that Beyoncé and Jay-Z received, for what purpose, and who approved such travel.”

. . . .

“Despite the clear prohibition against tourism in Cuba, numerous press reports described the couple’s trip as tourism, and the Castro regime touted it as such in its propaganda,” the letter said. “We represent a community of many who have been deeply and personally harmed by the Castro regime’s atrocities, including former political prisoners and the families of murdered innocents.”

. . . .

Sen. Marco Rubio also had strong words about the trip and issued a statement Monday accusing the Obama administration of not properly enforcing the law that bans tourism:

“U.S. law clearly bans tourism to Cuba by American citizens because it provides money to a cruel, repressive and murderous regime. Since their inception, the Obama Administration’s ‘people to people’ cultural exchange programs have been abused by tourists who have no interest in the Cuban people’s freedom and either don’t realize or don’t care that they’re essentially funding the regime’s systematic trampling of people’s human rights,” said Rubio.

I am not a fan of the policy of prohibiting people from traveling to Cuba. I understand the purpose of the ban, but I am generally for freedom. My default position is that we should be able to travel where we want to travel.

But if the ban should be lifted, it should be lifted for all — not just those who are friends with Obama.

41 Responses to “Beyonce and Jay-Z Had Official Permission to Travel to Cuba”

  1. wrt yr last sentence.
    Racist.

    Richard Aubrey (6c93a4)

  2. Remember those two fundraisers they hosted one right after Benghazi, next question?

    narciso (3fec35)

  3. I’m told that it isn’t particularly hard to gin up a “Cultural Mission” to Cuba, if you really want to go there. It used to be even easier, but Cigar tourists abused the system and that’s being cracked down on.

    Personally, I’d favor invading the place and putting El Beard and his Marxist pals in a zoo, but I’m a grouch. I’m also in favor of airdropping any idiot caught wearing a Che t-shirt into North Korea.

    I see signs that maneuvering to take down the ban is taking place behind the scenes. I read a lot of Bushwa about Raul Castro “not being the hardliner his Brother was”, which is nonsense. When Fidel dies – or when they are ready to admit he is dead – I think we will see a strong effort to end the ban, casting Raul as a reformer.

    C. S. P. Schofield (adb9dd)

  4. Gee, and pretty much EVERY photo of their trip shows him with a cigar. Hmmmmm

    Icy (f6133b)

  5. If the trip hadn’t been approved, we wouldn’t have been graced with that picture of Beyonce in a sundress, with her hair braided and done up behind her head.

    So I am personally I quite happy that the trip was approved.

    Leviticus (1aca67)

  6. Our commander-in-chief would now like to quote the philosopher of our age, Eric Cartman:
    “Screw you; I do what I want!”

    Icy (f6133b)

  7. Or the classic “Respect my authoritah!”

    Leviticus (1aca67)

  8. Because that’s what matters, Beyonce can’t go anywhere else in the Caribbean, except for the only police state,

    narciso (3fec35)

  9. I simply cannot imagine why some people characterize our current leadership as being elitist and arrogant.
    It must be a skin-tone thing.

    Icy (f6133b)

  10. Remember when the “artistic community” sanctimoniously organized a boycott of South Africa during the apartheid days? Good times, good times. Apartheid is bad, but totalitarian Marxism is good.

    But par for the course with this crowd.

    JVW (4826a9)

  11. america isn’t the sort of country what’s gonna be at all bothered by some bootylicious ho and her pimp overtly supporting tyranny cause americans hardly give a crap about their own freedoms anymore much less the freedom of some luckless faraway islanders

    happyfeet (8ce051)

  12. It’s only a guess this was a cultural exchange visa. Because they are celebrities they probably automatically qualify, but apparently they didn’t do any performances in Cuba, meet with performers, or anything.

    Sammy Finkelman (d22d64)

  13. Isn’t Beyonce used to totalitarian regimes? Doesn’t she performed in the middle east a lot.

    BradnSA (acab35)

  14. . . . but apparently they didn’t do any performances in Cuba, meet with performers, or anything.

    Somehow I don’t imagine they managed to avoid the photo-ops with stooges from the Castro regime though.

    JVW (4826a9)

  15. If the trip hadn’t been approved, we wouldn’t have been graced with that picture of Beyonce in a sundress, with her hair braided and done up behind her head.

    As a joke, someone told Beyonce that she should style herself up like Carmen Miranda, in order to pay homage to the legacy of Cuban music and entertainment. She did her hair that way intending to find fresh fruit in Havana that she could nest inside of those braids, only to discover that Castro had closed down the private fruit growers and the state-owned ones had all mismanaged their farms and allowed the fruit trees to die.

    JVW (4826a9)

  16. Isn’t Beyonce used to totalitarian regimes? Doesn’t she perform in the middle east White House a lot?

    Comment by BradnSA (acab35) — 4/9/2013 @ 9:13 am

    FIFY

    in_awe (7c859a)

  17. Whether or not I agree with a law, I think it should be enforced equally, and this business of “If you’re a rich and famous celebrity, and you perform for Michelle’s fiftieth birthday, you can do amazing things that are illegal for most of the rest of the country,” is sickening.

    bridget (84c06f)

  18. Now, I wonder what would happen if one of us (who aren’t celebrity donors to Obama) attempted to get a visa to travel to Cuba.

    William Teach (13c5dc)

  19. 11. america isn’t the sort of country what’s gonna be at all bothered by some bootylicious ho and her pimp overtly supporting tyranny cause americans hardly give a crap about their own freedoms anymore much less the freedom of some luckless faraway islanders

    Comment by happyfeet (8ce051) — 4/9/2013 @ 9:00 am

    http://www.guardian.co.uk/lifeandstyle/lostinshowbiz/2010/jan/08/beyonce-colonel-gaddafi-son

    Beyoncé and the $2m gig for Colonel Gaddafi’s sonDid Beyoncé not have any idea about who was paying for her services? None other than Hannibal Gaddafi, the out-of-control son of the Libyan leader

    Based upon this latest trip, I don’t think it would have mattered if she knew or not.

    13. Isn’t Beyonce used to totalitarian regimes? Doesn’t she performed in the middle east a lot.

    Comment by BradnSA (acab35) — 4/9/2013 @ 9:13 am

    Good news, friend. When she was performing for the Desert Duck of Death’s kid it was on St. Bart’s in the Caribbean.

    Steve57 (be3310)

  20. 5. If the trip hadn’t been approved, we wouldn’t have been graced with that picture of Beyonce in a sundress, with her hair braided and done up behind her head.

    So I am personally I quite happy that the trip was approved.

    Comment by Leviticus (1aca67) — 4/9/2013 @ 7:43 am

    FYI, if she shows up in a bikini on a beach anywhere in the world including Antarctica this outfit will have a photog there to record it.

    http://www.dailymail.co.uk/home/index.html

    Steve57 (be3310)

  21. I also believe the law should be enforced equally. But that is exactly the opposite of what the Left believes, their position is the law is for lesser citizens, not those who are morally superior by virtue of their leftist world views.

    Of course, the embargo hasn’t worked. It’s been over half a century now. We trade freely with Russia, China, and Vietnam; it is difficult to understand why those nations are okay and Cuba is not.

    But the repeal should come from Congress, not by executive fiat, and certainly not to benefit the President’s cronies. Let them buy stock in subsidized solar companies like the rest.

    Estragon (3bc1a7)

  22. @19 Thanks for the correction!

    BradnSA (acab35)

  23. Sure looks like the law isn’t color blind, especially if the colors are green and black.

    ropelight (a17baa)

  24. Have to wonder sometimes if the left does stuff like this just to get everyone riled up so they spend time being outraged about it instead of focusing on the real problems the administration is causing.

    For the record, I do think this is just another example of the left’s elitist mentality like the sequester soul concert. It’s frustrating for sure…but it’s becoming a distraction for us while they couldn’t care less. In fact, they’re probably planning something else just like it to keep attention elsewhere.

    Billy Bob (461c51)

  25. It wasn’t cultural exchange, it was education and their names were not on the application.

    Some people know how to work the system anbd that’s how they got the permission.

    Sammy Finkelman (d22d64)

  26. JVW,

    It’s not that Totalitarian(sp?) Marxism is good., it’s that the embargo is a 50 year old policy that has failed spectacularly. 50 years – same bad policy, same bad leaders. Why are you embracing failure?

    Fish (2931e8)

  27. Bad policies should just be ignored. As long as you are invited to the WH

    JD (b63a52)

  28. ‘to add it insult to injury’ he got a profanity laced, barely coherent song, out of it.

    narciso (3fec35)

  29. 5. Seriously, Beyonce merits no more than 7 out of 10, a point or so better than JLo but pedestrian.

    Christy Turlington, e.g., is a ten. Beyonce has no feature however small or trivial that approaches that perfection.

    gary gulrud (dd7d4e)

  30. After sending an eccentric sports star to NK, and this musical couple to Cuba…

    What’s next?

    MD in Philly (3d3f72)

  31. The only good that could come from unlimited travel to Cuba, is that some (more) of the Progs would stay there.

    askeptic (2bb434)

  32. “Seriously, Beyonce merits no more than 7 out of 10, a point or so better than JLo but pedestrian.”

    - gary gulrud

    You, sir, are crazy.

    Cray. Zee.

    Leviticus (17b7a5)

  33. beyonce is ok sometimes but she’s no lady gaga that’s for sure

    happyfeet (8ce051)

  34. I don’t find Beyonce to even be in the top 2 hottest Destiny Childs

    JD (b63a52)

  35. If you like over-the-top singing where one syllable is transformed into three syllables, and you like all that ‘talk to the hand !’ silliness, then Beyonce is your gal !

    Elephant Stone (8a7f08)

  36. Beyonce is kind of a dumb name I think

    in that Fox show about Raising Hope at first they tell you the lil girl baby wazzle is named “Princess Beyonce”

    but they’re just kidding cause of what a silly name Beyonce is

    Her real name is actually Hope.

    Beyonce.

    That’s silly.

    happyfeet (8ce051)

  37. Hey, get off my yard you damn hippies, what with that long hair and loud racket that makes no sense. And pull up your pants. Click here and scroll down to August. There’s a special guest appearance.

    Seriously, though, get off my lawn.

    Ag80 (f872ce)

  38. To quote one of the most famous lyrics from one of her hit songs, “To the left, to the left.”

    Indeed !

    Elephant Stone (8a7f08)

  39. 35. Exactly. Beyonce’s outstanding feature, her opalescent skin, does stand out, but she’s not striking, stunning en toto. Just really cute.

    33. Personally, I don’t regard Heidi Klum a perfect 10. Crazy would be pressing the point among the usual assortment of lovelies.

    gary gulrud (dd7d4e)

  40. Had the thought that mebee its a color thing.

    Vanessa Williams, ‘nuf said.

    gary gulrud (dd7d4e)


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