Patterico's Pontifications

8/15/2015

Good Neighbor Cuba: No Longer Enemy Of The U.S.

Filed under: General — Dana @ 2:18 pm



[guest post by Dana]

In light of the re-establishment of diplomatic ties with Cuba , I was reminded of Yale scholar Carlos Eire’s blistering response to President Obama’s vision for U.S. and Cuban relations:

I long for justice. Instead of seeing Raúl Castro shaking President Obama’s hand, I would like to see him, his brother, and all their henchmen in a court room, being tried for crimes against humanity. I also long for genuine freedom in Cuba. Instead of seeing his corrupt and abusive regime rewarded with favors from the United States, I long for the day when that regime is replaced by a genuine democracy with a free market economy.

Cubans have no freedom of speech or assembly. The press is tightly controlled, and there is no freedom to establish political parties or labor unions. Travel is strictly controlled, as is access to the Internet. There is no economic freedom and no elections. According to the Associated Press, at least 8,410 dissidents were detained in 2014.

These are the principles that Raúl Castro is unwilling to renounce, which have driven nearly 20 percent of Cuba’s population into exile.

Unfortunately, these are also the very principles that President Obama ratified as acceptable, which will govern Cuba for years to come.

And now this. Yesterday, as the U. S. Flag was raised over the Embassy in Havana for the first time in 54 years, Secretary of State John Kerry welcomed our neighbors:

We have begun to move down that path without any illusions about how difficult it may be. But we are each confident in our intentions, confident in the contacts that we have made, and pleased with the friendships that we have begun to forge.

And we are certain that the time is now to reach out to one another, as two peoples who are no longer enemies or rivals, but neighbors – time to unfurl our flags, raise them up, and let the world know that we wish each other well.

Unfortunately, for Cuban political dissidents and human rights activists, the message rang hollow as they were not invited to attend the ceremony, in spite of Sec. Kerry having acknowledged that it has been the activists and dissidents “at the heart of US foreign policy for decades.” Kerry rationalized the snub during an interview with Telemundo TV:

“That is a government-to-government moment, with very limited space…”

Here are several rows of empty chairs is the “very limited seating”:

Untitled-1

Kerry continued:

…by the way, which is why we’re having the reception later in the day at which we can have a cross-section of civil society including some dissidents,” Kerry told Telemundo.

On the surface, it certainly appeared to be a magnanimous gesture to invite human rights activists and political dissidents to a private, no-journalists-allowed soiree, except that it’s John Kerry were talking about, and it was John Kerry who forgot to mention why he later decided to meet face-to-face with the dissidents:

The secretary of state is coming under growing pressure to meet with Cuban political dissidents and human rights activists during his historic visit to the communist-led island, during which he will raise the American flag over the newly reopened U.S. Embassy. The critics’ push comes after Cuban authorities arrested dozens of dissidents, some of them reported to be wearing paper masks of President Barack Obama, during a march in Havana over the weekend.

It was unclear exactly how many Cubans were arrested and for how long on Sunday — some reports said around 90 while others said it was more than 100.

Further, there was this pesky little problem as well:

Cuban government officials are understood to have signalled they would not attend the ceremony if vocal critics of the government were in attendance.

In response to the opening of the embassy, Sen. Marco Rubio slammed the president:

“It is a diplomatic and moral failure on this Administration’s part to have moved forward with opening an embassy in Havana and providing the regime with a windfall of U.S. dollars without achieving any of our national interests in return.”

For his part, that old fox, Fidel Castro, quickly got into the spirit of this new-found neighbor thing. On the day before the flag-raising ceremony, he rolled out his Howdy, Neighbor! welcome wagon:

“Cuba is owed compensation equivalent to damages, which total many millions of dollars, as our country has stated with irrefutable arguments and data in all of its speeches at the United Nations,” Castro told local media on his 89th birthday Thursday, according to AFP.

–Dana

57 Responses to “Good Neighbor Cuba: No Longer Enemy Of The U.S.”

  1. Hello.

    Dana (86e864)

  2. Huh. Who knew our Fearless Leader would support haters”

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Recognition_of_same-sex_unions_in_Cuba

    Oh, I know. That’s different.

    Simon Jester (753872)

  3. My dad one time had dared to tell me that the Cubans deserved Castro because they kept voting him in. I rather forcefully disabused him of that notion. He hasn’t brought it up again.

    Bill H (2a858c)

  4. Do they have any vintage 1960’s cars or are they still in the 1940’s?

    mg (31009b)

  5. I read a report that the last “new” cars into Cuba dated 1957.

    Dana (86e864)

  6. How long until we see Toyota pick-up trucks with militant muslims roaming the countryside of Cuba?

    mg (31009b)

  7. Well, a 57 chevy would be sweet.

    mg (31009b)

  8. “Cuba is owed compensation equivalent to damages, which total many millions of dollars, as our country has stated with irrefutable arguments and data in all of its speeches at the United Nations,” Castro told local media on his 89th birthday Thursday, according to AFP.

    It’s funny how it is we owe the Cuban government all that sweet recognition cash when 1) they have had trade relations with virtually the remainder of the world for all that time and 2) they have very little of value to trade with. Sugar and tobacco from state run enterprises only gets you so far.

    Bill H (2a858c)

  9. Do they have any vintage 1960’s cars or are they still in the 1940’s?

    mg (31009b) — 8/15/2015 @ 2:43 pm

    Well, a 57 chevy would be sweet.

    mg (31009b) — 8/15/2015 @ 2:47 pm

    You would do well to consider the condition. Most anything on that island is far and away well past beater status. All the jokes of keeping a car together with bailing wire and bubble gum? All too real here.

    Bill H (2a858c)

  10. Cash for Clunkers – Cuba.

    mg (31009b)

  11. I just read an article in Practical Classics about this. Except for Russian imports all other foreign cars stopped in 1959. Most are very creatively maintained with later model alloy wheels, for example, and most re-engined with Russian diesel motors. That 57 Chebby might look nice, but you ain’t winning any drag races.

    Gazzer (feaf20)

  12. Bill H, No one has introduced them to PL-400 glue?
    Glue for Cohiba’s.

    mg (31009b)

  13. 1. It was past time we normalized relations with Cuba the way we normalized relations with China and Vietnam. Vietnam!
    2. It was inevitable that Obama and Kerry would f&@* it up.

    nk (dbc370)

  14. Simon Jester (753872) — 8/15/2015 @ 2:30 pm

    Castro used to tattoo homosexuals with serial numbers inside their lower lip — the ones he shipped over with the Muriel boat lift had them. He must be softening his hardline Stalinism.

    nk (dbc370)

  15. Millions? Did he really only say “millions”?

    Old school.

    Beldar (fa637a)

  16. 15. Millions? Did he really only say “millions”?

    Old school.

    Beldar (fa637a) — 8/15/2015 @ 3:09 pm

    I’m sure Obama will bump the compensation package to Cuba up well into the billions.

    It’s just how he rolls. I don’t think he’s met an anti-American dictator he didn’t like, and wanted to sell out the country to.

    Steve57 (5a07a9)

  17. 1. It was past time we normalized relations with Cuba the way we normalized relations with China and Vietnam. Vietnam!
    2. It was inevitable that Obama and Kerry would f&@* it up.

    nk (dbc370) — 8/15/2015 @ 2:59 pm

    That might be so on point 1. At this point they really aren’t much more of a genuine threat. More like North Korea with some good food. With point 2- well, Prez 404 had such complete success with Iran over the past couple of years. Why not give Cuba a shot? The on;y thing that surprises me is the JEF didn’t prostrate himself before Lider Maxima.

    Bill H (2a858c)

  18. Anyone who wants to think seriously about Cuba should begin with Michael Totten’s visit to Cuba.

    Then they should read Part II of his report on the visit.

    I’m used to seeing military and police checkpoints when I travel abroad. Every country in the Middle East has them, including Israel if you count the one outside the airport. The authorities in that part of the world are looking for guns and bombs mostly. The Cuban authorities aren’t worried about weapons. No one but the regime has anything deadlier than a baseball bat.

    Castro’s checkpoints are there to ensure nobody has too much or the wrong kind of food.

    Police officers pull over cars and search the trunk for meat, lobsters, and shrimp. They also search passenger bags on city busses in Havana. Dissident blogger Yoani Sanchez wrote about it sarcastically in her book, Havana Real. “Buses are stopped in the middle of the street and bags inspected to see if we are carrying some cheese, a lobster, or some dangerous shrimp hidden among our personal belongings.”

    If they find a side of beef in the trunk, so I’m told, you’ll go to prison for five years if you tell the police where you got it and ten years if you don’t.

    No one is allowed to have lobsters in Cuba. You can’t buy them in stores, and they sure as hell aren’t available on anyone’s ration card. They’re strictly reserved for tourist restaurants owned by the state. Kids will sometimes pull them out of the ocean and sell them on the black market, but I was warned in no uncertain terms not to buy one. I stayed in hotels and couldn’t cook my own food anyway. And what was I supposed to do, stash a live lobster in my backpack?

    Read it all, then think about John Kerry and his life of luxury, provided by his wives.

    Mike K (90dfdc)

  19. A Democratic president, a light-weight former U.S. Senator who thought he understood foreign policy very well, set out to have a frank talk with our country’s mortal enemies, convinced that with reason and intelligence he could persuade them to align themselves with our interests instead of competing with us to promote their own.

    It was June 1961, and the president’s name was Kennedy, and the place was Vienna.

    That disastrous meeting — that disastrous president’s spectacular naiveté — led very directly, inexorably and entirely predictably, to the beginning of construction on the Berlin Wall mere days later and, very shortly thereafter, the Soviet military build-up and ultimately its introduction of nuclear missiles into Cuba that precipitated the Cuban Missile Crisis in 1962. Bizarrely, JFK came away from that debacle with the reputation for having saved the world from nuclear catastrophe, instead of with the reputation of having very, very nearly plunged the world into it.

    Part of the price of the stand-down, of course, was the guarantee of the American government — not just JFK personally — that we’d not invade Cuba. In other words, the dictator who still rules Cuba, who’s outlived the presidencies of Kennedy, Johnson, Nixon, Ford, Carter, Reagan, Bush-41, Clinton, Bush-43, and (soon) Obama, has been in power continuously, with no threat of American military interference, due to a spectacular screw-up by Jack Kennedy in June 1961.

    I highly recommend Frederick Kempe’s superb 2011 book, “Berlin 1961: Kennedy, Khrushchev, and the Most Dangerous Place on Earth.” I defy anyone to read it without weeping with frustration at the comparably disastrous naiveté of Barack Obama and John F’in Kerry in the pending deal with the mullahs of Iran.

    At least Jack Kennedy didn’t actually give Castro a nuke. And yes, I agree that Cuba, since the Soviet collapse, has no longer posed the sort of strategic or even regional threat that it did while the Soviets were still propping Castro’s economy up and using his troops as proxies to promote communist revolution around the world. But it’s the same damned man — and I use the word “damned” in its Biblical sense — running Cuba. That our country, through Obama and Kerry, have now cloaked him in legitimacy makes my stomach turn.

    Beldar (fa637a)

  20. My stomach aches, too.

    mg (31009b)

  21. Thank you for the link, Mike K.

    mg (31009b)

  22. of course, it’s a singularity for anyone foolish enough to invest it,

    http://havanajournal.com/business/entry/leisure-canada-now-a-defunct-cuba-real-estate-development-brand/

    narciso (ee1f88)

  23. 19. …And yes, I agree that Cuba, since the Soviet collapse, has no longer posed the sort of strategic or even regional threat that it did while the Soviets were still propping Castro’s economy up and using his troops as proxies to promote communist revolution around the world. But it’s the same damned man — and I use the word “damned” in its Biblical sense — running Cuba. That our country, through Obama and Kerry, have now cloaked him in legitimacy makes my stomach turn.

    Beldar (fa637a) — 8/15/2015 @ 4:36 pm

    It’s important to know that the US had embargoed cuba for two reasons. One was to force regime change, and the other was if the embargo failed to bring down the Castro regime then to at least prevent Cuba from acquiring the finances to export communist revolution.

    It succeeded spectacular at achieving the latter goal. Cuba is a basket case, and the regime was on the ropes after Chavez ran Venezuela’s economy into the ground.

    It appeared that Cuba had run out of sugar daddies. But then this country elected a new one. Twice.

    Make no mistake. This isn’t in this country’s interests at all. And it demoralized pro-democracy advocates in Cuba. Which is exactly what it was intended to do.

    The parallels between reopening diplomatic relations with Cuba and Obama’s disastrous deal with Iran are multiple.

    Neither one of these shoddy moves by Obama have been made for the stated reasons, they were made by doing an end run around Congress, and they’ve been sold with packs of lies.

    Obama sold out the Cubans who want freedom from this dictatorship precisely for the same reason he sold out the Iranian green revolutionaries. They were pro-American, and thus not legitimate in Obama’s eyes. Their true “class consciousness” so to speak should have made them virulently anti-American.

    Just like Cuba, Iran was in dire economic straits and that is precisely why Obama threw them a lifeline. It was important not only to have some sort of rapprochement with Iran, but with this particular regime. Just like Obama wanted to restore ties not with Cuba in general, but with this particular regime. Obama could not and would not risk either of these two countries somehow getting rid of these particular sets of leaders and, even worse from his perspective, possibly getting more America-friendly governments.

    These aren’t the only instances when he has done this. When Erdogan was up for reelection recently Obama wrote an op-ed that appeared in a Turkish newspaper. There was an English-language version that appeared online, so if you’re interested you can read the vapid thing. It too was mostly a pack of lies, but the important message to the Turks wasn’t the words some speechwriter wrote for Obama. It was the paper he had run his op-ed. It used to be an opposition paper, run by critics of Erdogan. So Erdogan seized the paper, threw many of its editors into prison, and gave the paper to his son-in-law. Needless to say it is no longer an opposition paper.

    Also needless to say the message was not lost on the Turks. It was a despicable thing for Obama to do but it wasn’t his first despicable act (selling out the Poles and Czechs to the Russians over missile defense on the 70th anniversary of the Soviet invasion was no coincidence; Obama’s contempt for America as the primary source of evil and injustice around the globe extends to our allies who have and would again help us). As we are seeing it won’t be his last despicable act, and it won’t be his most despicable act. I see his betrayal of the United States to Iran as far worse.

    But he still has a year and half to go. I wouldn’t be shocked if he does something or a few somethings to knock the Iran deal out of the top spot.

    Steve57 (5a07a9)

  24. Had I been there, I would have had a paper bag over my head.

    Kevin M (25bbee)

  25. Sugar and tobacco from state run enterprises only gets you so far.

    And we don’t buy sugar from ANYBODY.

    Kevin M (25bbee)

  26. Beldar,

    There are those who have said that LBJ wanted to blame Cuba for the assassination and invade anyway.

    Kevin M (25bbee)

  27. phillip shenon, pointed out how the commission ignored leads like those proferred by the late Charles Thomas, that showed DGI involvement,

    narciso (ee1f88)

  28. taking the long view, Bill Atwood’s back channel at the time of the assasination, and the Richardson mission thirty some years later, would have lead in the same direction,

    narciso (ee1f88)

  29. I have read in the past that Ceauşescu’s downfall was catalyzed by an elderly woman yelling “You Lie!” during his last speech. I have not been able to find it on a quick search
    (though I now know about several songs with the title or lyric and was reminded of Joe Wilson’s comment).

    This is what I have meant when I have said we need a “Ceauşescu moment”.

    It is almost beyond belief that so many people are willing to roll over brain dead for this president, and that so many roll over because they don’t know any better, including people I know who are otherwise bright.

    Denying truth is a cancer of the soul that spreads rapidly.

    MD in Philly (not in Philly at the moment) (deca84)

  30. a friend recommended this book, which is an overview, of the whole period,

    http://www.amazon.com/Revolution-1989-Fall-Soviet-Empire/dp/0307387925

    narciso (ee1f88)

  31. It succeeded spectacular at achieving the latter goal. Cuba is a basket case,

    I think Cuban communism and socialism should get credit for that. We never blockaded Venezuela and they are as bad off. Plus they had a big oil industry that Chavez destroyed in usual communist fashion.

    Mike K (90dfdc)

  32. the Brits, the Germans, the Italian all had concessions in Cuba, and it didn’t seem to make much difference,

    narciso (ee1f88)

  33. The op-ed Obama praising Erdogan had the main purpose of telling Turks that he supports the kind of man who seizes newspapers that dare to criticize his imperial butt, and throws his critics in prison.

    I am convinced he’d do the same here if he could. Look at how he talks about Fox news. In fact, his DoJ investigated Fox’s James Rosen for the crime of printing something (or merely having the government info in his possession) that some unauthorized leaker had given to him. I believe there’s even a question of whether or not the information was even classified. But it was an attempt to intimidate whistleblowers from going to the press, and the press from printing what they get from whistleblowers.

    But the English language version of the op-ed was only interesting in one regard. You’d never know the guy who Obama was describing was the virtual dictator he really was. It’s often been reported that of all the world’s leaders Obama is only truly friends with Erdogan. Which again speaks volumes just on his own.

    So the other purpose was to cover for Erdogan to an English speaking audience, i.e. Americans. It’s been his pattern all along; support anti-American would-be or actual dictators, then lie to his domestic audience about the true nature of those regimes.

    He has been doing the same thing in the case of Iran for years. His administration has been lying about their absolute refusal to abide by the terms of their previous agreements, and acting as their attorney not only against Congress but against the IAEA’s complaints about their non-compliance.

    That’s his pattern, if they don’t meet the terms then he’ll order his administration insist that they have been abiding by the terms. And that the terms really weren’t the terms. Like his Obamacare tax wasn’t a tax, and everybody’s lying dictionary was wrong.

    He has already started the process of rehabilitating the Iranian regime as some legitimate, normal government (Hagel spilled the beans about that, and that the Obama regime had abandoned the idea of preventing Iran from getting nuclear weapons, during his confirmation).

    Similar to the op-ed he wrote praising Erdonan, he taped an English language message for Nowruz, the Iranian new year, ostensibly to the Iranian people. You can find it on YouTube but I won’t link to it as I can’t stand watching the guy lie to my face.

    But he said things like:

    http://www.usatoday.com/story/theoval/2014/03/20/obama-iran-nowruz-iran-nuclear-deal/6645163/

    If Tehran “meets its international obligations, then there could be a new relationship between our two countries, and Iran could begin to return to its rightful place among the community of nations,” Obama said in a video message.

    Iran hasn’t met its old international obligations. So Obama simply dropped and demands that they do so, and has lied to cover those failures that should have spelled the end of negotiations. Then he closed with:

    “If Iran seizes this moment, this Nowruz could mark not just the beginning of a new year, but a new chapter in the history of Iran and its role in the world,” Obama said, “including a better relationship with the United States and the American people, rooted in mutual interest and mutual respect.”

    Of course, as with Cuba Obama’s ultimate goal is to reestablish ties with Iran. So it’s clear that he will continue to lie about Iran to cover for it’s leaders and for it’s breaches of the nuclear deal.

    Rouhani is not a moderate by any stretch of the imagination, and there’s no way Khameini would let him become President if he were, and in any case the “Supreme Leader” Obama is so in love with is called the the supreme leader in Iran (and its domestic agents in the WH). Because he really does rein Supreme and Khameini is the guy leading the chants of “Death to America.”

    So his Nowruz message was aimed at promoting several of his lies. That somehow he is making peace with some mythical moderates or reformers. If they exist then they’re in prison or under house arrest.

    He’s making common cause with the thugs who put arrest and imprison reformers, but in the fiction he was promoting to the American people he turned the truth on its head and said somehow his domestic critics were somehow making common cause with the “hardliners.”

    As if the people he’s cutting deals with, including “moderate
    reformer” Rouhani, routinely talk about wiping out Israel with nukes despite the fact that they would retaliate and wipe out Tehran would be a decent trade aren’t the hardliners.

    So we can expect him and his minions to tell similar lies about
    Cuba. That his brilliant diplomacy has somehow changed the leoopard’s spots and that the Cuban government is moderating.

    Meanwhile, they are cracking down with increased gusto because they get sweetheart deals from Obama. And like Iran those deals come with no strings attached.

    And if, like the Mullahs in Tehran, the Castros and their henchment are also emboldened to commit new outrages with their economic windfall then Obama will simply lie to our faces. Demanding who are we going to believe? Some clearly racist Cubans and American conservatives who just never learned to accept a black man in the WH, or are we going to believe the Historic First Black President who says if you like your plan you can keep your plan?

    Steve57 (5a07a9)

  34. My dad one time had dared to tell me that the Cubans deserved Castro because they kept voting him in. I rather forcefully disabused him of that notion.

    But he really isn’t too far off the mark, given the recent history of Venezuela or the long-time history of Argentina, whose electorates still have some sway. Of course, Castro and his Cuba are even more excessively and extremely totalitarian and leftist than nations like Venezuela, but merely by a few degrees.

    Closer to home, and while it’s a bit of a stretch, but not too much, are uber-blue cities of the US, along the lines of dystopias like Detroit, which also have an electorate that has some sway. Transport many of the residents of such places to faraway Cuba, allow them to continue to have the right to vote, and I wouldn’t put it past quite a few of them to check the box next to “Fidel Castro.”

    Anyone who wants to think seriously about Cuba should begin with Michael Totten’s visit to Cuba.

    The story of such draconian measures to track and control people in a society should always call to mind the humans who are responsible for enforcing the harsh edicts handed down from on high and who are more than (and even happily) willing to do it for compensation (or for the righteousness of the cause!). Those are the folks who will proclaim: “Hitler brought pride back to Germany!” Or “Stalin kept the trains running on time!” Or “Castro gives us free education and healthcare!”

    cbsnews.com, August 10: Chinese authorities ordered a state broadcaster to punish a popular TV celebrity for insulting Communist Party founder Mao Zedongat a private dinner, state media reported. Bi Fujian was a talent show host on China Central Television when a video circulated in April showing him mocking Mao in comments interspersed in a song. He publicly apologized and was suspended.

    The China Discipline Inspection Daily, a newspaper under the party’s anti-graft watchdog, said Sunday that discipline inspectors at the broadcasting watchdog had found that Bi had violated “political discipline” in harming Mao’s image. The report said the State Administration of Press, Publication, Radio, Film and Television had ordered CCTV to deal with the matter “severely” and to educate people within the broadcasting system.

    Even though some of Mao’s policies have been officially critiqued, the ruling Communist Party can hardly renounce him because it has built much of its legitimacy upon the imagery surrounding the revolutionary leader.

    From those situations, it’s really not too much of a stretch for various people to close their eyes and shout: “But Hillary’s heart is in the right place!” Or “Barack is for the welfare of the common man!”

    Some of our fellow humans will rationalize, excuse and deflect until their last day on Earth.

    Mark (9abec5)

  35. part of the publicity campaigns comes from a glossy quarterly English language magazine with advertising from actual business in Havana, part of the Interior Ministry’s portfolio no doubt,

    narciso (ee1f88)

  36. My dad one time had dared to tell me that the Cubans deserved Castro because they kept voting him in. I rather forcefully disabused him of that notion.

    But he really isn’t too far off the mark, given the recent history of Venezuela or the long-time history of Argentina, whose electorates still have some sway. Of course, Castro and his Cuba are even more excessively and extremely totalitarian and leftist than nations like Venezuela, but merely by a few degrees.

    You don’t know my dad. He really did believe that the Cubans deserved whatever Stalinism brought them. I don’t tolerate that kind of enforced willful ignorance from anyone.

    Have you ever had a look at a blog called The Real Cuba? Guy by the name of Sal Prieto. I think it still exists. Have a look if you get a chance. It is, as they say, eyeopening. The section on Cuba’s vaunted healthcare system will sicken you.

    Bill H (2a858c)

  37. I think Cuba may have a Romania moment but the smart ones all left and are in Miami. Hard to know what’s left.

    Mike K (90dfdc)

  38. Sugar and tobacco from state run enterprises only gets you so far.

    And we don’t buy sugar from ANYBODY.

    Kevin M (25bbee) — 8/15/2015 @ 6:09 pm

    They were at one time, along with Hawaii, one of our main suppliers. And the Cubans made a metric fu*kton of money from it. How much of it went into the pockets of Batista cronys and acolytes, I don’t know.

    Bill H (2a858c)

  39. much less than the picture in Godfather 2, suggested, Cuba was buffetted by the collapse in sugar prices after the war, much as the spike supported Machado in the 20s

    narciso (ee1f88)

  40. But we are each confident in our intentions

    That’s how it always is with liberals and other magical thinkers, isn’t it?

    “We meant well.”

    So forgive us when the war starts or the people are crushed more finally by the oppressor, now rich with our friendship.

    Patricia (5fc097)

  41. 40. …That’s how it always is with liberals and other magical thinkers, isn’t it?

    “We meant well.”

    Patricia (5fc097) — 8/15/2015 @ 8:34 pm

    People who meant well do not ignore results. If they truly meant to help the downtrodden with a government program then they would review the program after they implemented it to see if it’s doing what they said they intended it to do.

    The fact that no government program has ever been reviewed and declared a failure is evidence that their stated intentions were not their real intentions. The fact that they fight tooth and nail against even holding people accountable for their failures and sometimes even deliberate malfeasance (let alone holding themselves accountable for over promising and woefully failure to deliver) is evidence that they do not mean well.

    Liberals are the party of big government and cronyism. And their clients are the bureaucrats and their cronies. Their clients are never the people they cry their crocodile tears over, and demand government do something about the problem. And they never intend to solve the problem as keeping the problem going is job security.

    Has anyone from the Veteran’s Administration for shamefully and deliberately cooking their books when it came to customer service? That’s because Veterans are customers in name only. They don’t give a rat’s @$$ about Veterans. They simply want to keep them as a captive audience to justify their demands for bigger budgets and more workers. No amount of money, or no increase in staffing, will ever solve the problem. Nor is it intended to, because then they couldn’t keep demanding more money.

    IRS Commissioner Koskinen and his former henchwoman Lois Lerner typify this breed of federal worker. They’ll stonewall investigations by Congress and even federal judges because laws are for the little people who are sheep to be shorn, sometimes even skinned. And it’s always the same; every body at the IRS is innocent of everything, and no you can’t see any of the documents you subpoenaed that would call that assertion into question, and give us more money.

    This is why Lerner targeted conservative groups trying to get tax exempt status as service organizations. Lerner made it clear in her emails (what the IRS has so far deigned to produce) that she despises conservatives because they are in favor of shrinking the size of government. So as one of their rulers she felt it was her duty to put them in their places, and hopefully in prison, for forgetting their place. As a federal employee she is in favor of as much government as possible as it was in her interests as a good treasury union member. More union members mean more union dues, and more political power for federal employee unions.

    And of course that was good for liberals as that meant more political contributions after all that money had been laundered through the unions.

    So, no liberals are not well intentioned but simply corrupt and power hungry. But you don’t get very far in politics by telling people that, and that they really want to keep screwing people who don’t like their policies (or suffer under them) as much as possible.

    Steve57 (5a07a9)

  42. Steve57

    Evil is a word I would use

    EPWJ (a3afaa)

  43. The nk who hopes we will some day normalize relations with Greece wrote:

    1. It was past time we normalized relations with Cuba the way we normalized relations with China and Vietnam. Vietnam!
    2. It was inevitable that Obama and Kerry would f&@* it up.

    Absotively, posilutely correct.

    Our embargo against Cuba hasn’t pushed the Communists out of power, and, given the history of the rest of Latin America, it can be reasonably argued that our policies have helped to keep the Communists in power.

    Nor is Cuba somehow worse than many other nations with which we have maintained diplomatic relations. We maintained diplomatic relations with Russia during the worst of the Stalinist days, and President Nixon opened the door to diplomatic relations with Communist China long before it adopted a capitalist economy.

    But, of course President Obama fouled it up. Had he done something really radical like consulted with Congress, he could have built up support before he took action.

    The foreign policy Dana (1b79fa)

  44. My goodness our president is a nut.

    mg (31009b)

  45. Beldar wrote:

    Part of the price of the stand-down, of course, was the guarantee of the American government — not just JFK personally — that we’d not invade Cuba. In other words, the dictator who still rules Cuba, who’s outlived the presidencies of Kennedy, Johnson, Nixon, Ford, Carter, Reagan, Bush-41, Clinton, Bush-43, and (soon) Obama, has been in power continuously, with no threat of American military interference, due to a spectacular screw-up by Jack Kennedy in June 1961. . . . .

    But it’s the same damned man — and I use the word “damned” in its Biblical sense — running Cuba. That our country, through Obama and Kerry, have now cloaked him in legitimacy makes my stomach turn.

    Well, not quite: Fidel Castro “retired” in 2011, due to the infirmities of old age; he turned 89 three days ago. His brother Raul assumed the Presidency, and he’s 84 years old himself.

    The foreign policy Dana (1b79fa)

  46. The main thing now is for the Congress to be sure to not appropriate one single penny for any aid or assistance to Cuba.

    The Dana who would write this evenhe weren't a penny-pincher (1b79fa)

  47. i wanna find elian gonzalez then wait til he buys an ice cream cone and right when he’s about to take a bite I’m a knock it out of his hand and take a picture of the look on his stupid commie face

    happyfeet (5546fb)

  48. god bless america my bucket list just ain’t getting any shorter

    happyfeet (5546fb)

  49. If not for Elian Gonzalez, Gore would have been elected President in 2000. Clinton screw up or Byzantine dynastic intrigue?

    nk (dbc370)

  50. It is probably a foolish a move as the embrace of stalin, at the height of the terror, worse than mao, because his purges wrre over

    narciso (ee1f88)

  51. Raul ran the army, which in turn controls the entirety of businesses in Cuba.

    narciso (ee1f88)

  52. Obama is a Marxist at Heart and a Socialist in practice. Not sure why anyone who has followed him since 2004 is surprised. Only the useful idiots (or Leftists) thought him a “good man.”

    Rodney King's Spirit (9225a4)

  53. If not for Elian Gonzalez, Gore would have been elected President in 2000.

    If not for a drunk driving conviction, W would have won by 5 points.

    We can play this all week.

    Kevin M (25bbee)

  54. i remember when i was proud to be an American…

    redc1c4 (6d1848)

  55. i wanna find elian gonzalez then wait til he buys an ice cream cone and right when he’s about to take a bite I’m a knock it out of his hand and take a picture of the look on his stupid commie face

    happyfeet (5546fb) — 8/16/2015 @ 5:37 am

    Remember, Happy, that stupid commie face is the product of some pretty severe indoctrination after Clinton sent him back to Cuba at gunpoint. That was after his dad was turned into a cause celebre here in the US. You know the story, right?

    Bill H (2a858c)

  56. Funny. When a Christian reminisces “he’s gone to a better place” he means heaven. When a democrat does it he means Cuba.

    Hoagie (f4eb27)

  57. There is a fair argument to be made that the embargo is a failure and we do business with any number of awful countries. But how any US government would restore relations without getting back Joann Chesimard and the host of criminals, scumbags and terrorists Cuba has harbored could be the dumbest thing of this entire debacle called the Obama Administration. Because Cuba would give up everyone of them in a heartbeat for this deal.

    Bugg (137ba5)


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