Fidel’s dead. Good

Fidel Castro’s Economic Disaster In Cuba

And do note that Puerto Rico result. That Caribbean island remained under that American domination, that cruel capitalism and the chaos of markets. It was never enriched by the scientific planning of socialism. And living standards soared by a factor of 4 while those in Cuba stagnated for 5 decades. And the Cuban system justified itself by freeing Cuba from such American hegemony.

For that Fidel Castro should not be forgiven.

We also need to heed this lesson. Non-market economic systems do not work. We do only have that spectrum available to us, laissez faire all the way to social democracy. Socialism, not even once people, not even once.

60 thoughts on “Fidel’s dead. Good”

  1. I, for one, can’t wait for my FB feed to be full of socialists lauding Stalinist Castro.

    I wish they’d make up their minds once and for all whether they consider Stalinism to be Socialism, my head’s spinning trying to keep up with it all.

    And note the selfishness of the people who say “I want to visit Cuba before it’s ruined by capitalism”. OK, so you want the Cubans to be kept in poverty and under a Stalinist police state just so that you can have your Socialist theme park to visit every now and again. Remind me how much you profess to care about the poor again?

  2. Bloke in North Dorset

    The sailing forum I read is already full of people lauding Cuba as better than the USA in general life, life expectancy and healthcare.

    Less than 5 minutes on Google to debunk those myths.

    I suspect it’s going to be like wack-a-mole debunking Cuba was great tropes.

  3. So Much For Subtlety

    The BBC is running academics claiming Cuba was a centre of world culture. Sure. Hitler made the trains run on time as well. Better culture too.

    I have never felt that the BBC needs an Ecksian solution more than right now.

  4. One of the features of living down here is you get to meet a lot of Cuban ex-pats. And, if you ask them, they’ll tell you a great deal about the island they come from. But I can only presume it’s like Dominica & there must be two of them. Because what they tell you bears no resemblance to the place the Guardianistas are so fond of.
    Odd thing is, though. I can’t find this other island on the map. CIA orchestrated conspiracy, I’d say.

  5. A shame we can’t get a live relay of his screams from Hell.

    Plus it would make a great backing track for horror movies.

    PS–The BBC just needs to be shut quickly. Were I PM it would be gone in a week fro a standing start.

  6. I’ve already had fun with these people this morning.

    “As a so-called (!)Christian aren’t you going to mourn him?”
    “No I’m not. Mourning is expressing a feeling I don’t have. I’ll pray for his soul of course… as I pray for the souls of Adolf Hitler, Joseph Stalin and Mao Zedong.”

  7. It’s very difficult to make headway when pointing out that socialism has impoverished Cuba because lefties always retort with “its all Americas fault for the embargo”.

    Does anybody have a link or reference that spells out clearly with evidence the effect of the embargo compared to the effect of socialism on Cubans?

  8. “So Much For Subtlety

    The BBC is running academics claiming Cuba was a centre of world culture. Sure. Hitler made the trains run on time as well.”

    Credit where it’s due, it was Mussolini who was said to have made the trains run on time. Hitler was more of an Autobahn man.

  9. Socialists also tell us that international trade is a bad thing. We’ll be richer if we make everything at home.

    Cuba should be wealthy, no?

  10. The only regret we should feel is that the dictator was not executed for his crimes and that he did not die knowing his legacy was to be reviled as an evil criminal. No other reaction is possible for the death of such a tyrant. It is pathetic to see those who seek to excuse his evil.

  11. Why don’t we listen to what the locals have to say?

    “We’re all celebrating, this is like a carnival,” said 72-year-old Jay Fernandez, who came to Miami when he was 18 in 1961. He and his wife and another woman held up a bilingual sign which he had made four years ago when Castro first became ill. “Satan, Fidel is now yours. Give him what he deserves. Don’t let him rest in peace.”

    Bet you won’t hear that on the BBC, unless it’s a bit of colour to a “Cuba was ruined by the yankees” piece.

  12. So Much For Subtlety

    Tim Worstall – “Socialists also tell us that international trade is a bad thing. We’ll be richer if we make everything at home. Cuba should be wealthy, no?”

    Cuba was free to trade with the whole world – even Canada. They were just protected from being exploited by American multinationals.

    Should be a paradise.

  13. I am afraid I find any sign of jubliation at the death of a political opponent, particularly an aged and now powerless one, distasteful. It reminds me of those barbarian lefties who celebrated the death of Margaret Thatcher (pbuh). The left revels in the politics of hate because they believe the right is wicked, and the left often attributes by projection its own hate-mongering to the right. As far as possible, the right should be above such hatred – even when faced with the death of an evil tyrant like Castro.

  14. So Much For Subtlety

    Theophrastus – “I am afraid I find any sign of jubliation at the death of a political opponent”

    I am not happy Castro is dead. I am angry he cheated the hang man.

  15. To be fair, the BBC bulletin I heard did run a lengthy quote from something called the Cuban Democratic Directorate, describing him as a murderous tyrant and talking about his vicious totalitarian regime etc.

  16. So let me get this straight – a socialist economy is prevented from trading with a capitalist one, and the subsequent under performance of the socialist one is evidence of the superiority of socialism?

  17. When Castro took power, Cuba had the highest per capita icome in the Caribbean. Now only Haiti is worse. Say what you like about socialism, it’s better than Voudou.

  18. SMFS:
    “I am not happy Castro is dead”
    “I am angry he cheated the hang man.”
    I am disappointed, not angry.

  19. Big coverage of Castro on Radio 4’s 1300 news and overwhelmingly positive. Corbyn was in there praising Castro’s health and education policies…zzzzz. And there’s a special programme at 2330.

  20. Jezza is running out of countries that we should emulate run by lunatics, still his statement today on Castro is a classic..

    in seeing no evil hearing no evil speaking no evil about a man who had twice as many people disappear as Pinochet managed, and a country were the donkey and cart still prevail outside Havana as “premium” transport, still world class healthcare free for all is a plus until you are reminded that Aspirin is in short supply and the doctors moonlight as tourist guides, where next Jezza, North Korea ?

  21. Sending gay men to work in forced labour camps is apparently rather more SJW-acceptable if they are left-wing forced labour camps.

    I don’t think I can disagree with the thrust of Tim’s piece on this. Okay, Castro’s economic policies have not left Cuba a thriving economy. But if that’s what the people wanted, and that is what they got, then so be it. I can’t see that an apparently* fairly popular economic policy can be seen as the greatest evil committed by a man with so much blood on his hands. For me the moral turpitude of the economic policy was not so much the outcomes, but that it was never presented regularly to the people to obtain ongoing democratic mandates for its continuation – and that people who dared speak out against this, or other policies, were silenced. Sometimes all too permanently. It wouldn’t even matter if the economic policies had had lovely fluffy bountiful outcomes, dictators who write their policies with the blood of their critics are ****s.

    * Though who can know for sure just how well-supported it would be in a free society with fair elections? Nevertheless, even his critics tend to acknowledge his popularity … among those Cubans who didn’t flee, anyway.

  22. Theophrastus

    Don’t misunderstand me, I’m not celebrating. Neither, however, will I pretend to be moved at all or feel anything positive about him. There is no morality in feelings either way; only actions. So I will not feel.

  23. Trumps response about the legacy of firing squads and brutal dictator vs Obamas history will judge him, people fee strong emotions etc.
    Wonder how much this sort of attitude influenced why Trump pinched Florida

  24. Aye, amd the bbc had him winning such a decisive victory at cuito canevale that he had the general in charge revalued and executed. The BBC doednt mention the last bit

  25. @Theophrastus:

    I am afraid I find any sign of jubliation at the death of a political opponent, particularly an aged and now powerless one, distasteful. It reminds me of those barbarian lefties who celebrated the death of Margaret Thatcher (pbuh)

    Remind me again how many of St. Margaret of Thatcher’s political opponents she had murdered? Pretty sure its zero.

    Meanwhile Fidel had somewhere in the thousands to tens of thousands of his own countrymen executed or imprisoned for the simple act of opposing him.

    I hope Lucifer has a nice place in hell for the old bastard.

    Viva Cuba Libre!

  26. Fidel’s dead but his legacy lives on. I’ll cheer when the current, or future, government moves away from the centrally planned model.


    You might want to be careful when discussing a lack of socialism in Puerto Rico. Land reforms in the 1910’s and 1920’s had a large socialist element and, in part, contributed to the decimation of the Puerto Rican sugar industry. While most history I’ve read discounts* the traditional practice of breaking up family farms so that all the, usually male, children had their own land Marxist ideas were definitely part of the mix. Whether you collectivize the land or break it up into relatively small chunks the overall end results end up being fairly similar. A lot of the growth in PR’s GDP can be attributed to it’s status as a tax haven. Ending the tax free status on PR bonds in 2006 is the key driver in the current debt crisis.

    * Oddly enough while looking for the title of a specific book I wanted to reference I came across an excerpt from a work about the 1870’s which does mention it.

  27. Everything about Cuban economics has been a disaster. They became effectively a sugar colony for the USSR far worse than the one for the USA that the Castro’s originally fought against.

    By now it is also more corrupt, since the corruption runs deep through the security forces rather than merely a Mafia overlay. They have even managed an apparent miracle of making prostitution more common.

    Only periodic loosening of Socialism’s grip when things got tight got them through the hard times.

    How people can describe a country which only keeps its inhabitants inside the country by closing the borders as a success makes me despair.

  28. So Much For Subtlety

    Someone on Twitter has said that the one good thing about Castro living such a long life is that he lived long enough to see Communism fail everywhere.

    Hell is the absence of good. Or in Fidel’s case, of hope. He lived it while still alive.

    That is some consolation.

  29. Bloke in Costa Rica

    @Theophrastus: are we not supposed to cheer when the bad guy snuffs it? That sounds a little too high-minded for my tastes. It’s too bad that so few of Castro’s ilk end up smeared all over a wall by massed machine gun fire like Ceaușescu. Allow us to have a bit of celebration when one of the truly evil is no longer with us, even if he died in hospital rather than, say, from having each leg tied to a steel rope and being pulled apart by tractors, which would have been more entertaining.

  30. Theophrastus,

    I am, rarely.

    I’m not going to compare him with Thatcher. I didn’t say I was glad Tony Benn died. I’d have preferred Benn to have seen the light. But, Benn was democratically elected.

    Castro was a tyrant. I’d have preferred he had realised how bad communism was and given up power for democracy. He had decades of opportunity to do that and didn’t. Hopefully his death will spur on greater reform, and if not that, a 2nd revolution with all his mates dangling from nooses.

  31. MyBurningEars,

    And that’s what should be said. All this “controversial figure” stuff. Fuck that. He was a tyrant. What’s Cuba going to do if we call Castro a cunt?

  32. Agree, Matthew L. I think there is a significant difference between a leader who is no longer in power and one who is actively oppressing the population. The death of Mugabe is entitled to be welcomed on the basis that it may prove highly beneficial to the people of Zimbabwe. Of course, this is by no means certain, it is higher debatable whether or not the deaths of Hussein and Ghaddafi have been beneficial.

  33. The world’s a better place for being without Castro. I am pleased he’s gone, and I can laugh at jokes about him and his death. But jubilation and celebration are going too far for me. That’s all.

  34. @ Theo
    Having dropped by the \Cuban social center in Malaga city, I’d say you were at odds with the Cuban people. And aren’t they the people who count, in this?

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