Tag Archives: Fidel Castro

Socialized Medicine Even Kills Socialists

url-120Originally posted at American Thinker blog

The President of Venezuela’s dependence on Cuban healthcare obviously failed him, because Hugo Chávez is dead.  In a July 16, 2011 New York Times article entitled “Chávez Puts His Trust in Castro for Care,” Michael Shifter, president of the Inter-American Dialogue in Washington, was quoted as saying “For Chávez, questions of trust, political loyalty and control trump all other considerations. Fidel is one of the few people in which Chávez has utter faith and trust. He is prepared to entrust his health to Fidel, even if he could get better treatment elsewhere.”

Notwithstanding Chávez’s “utter faith and trust” in Fidel Castro and the Cuban National Health System, the Venezuelan dictator has now officially assumed room temperature.  America should pay heed, because if Hugo could speak from the grave it’s likely he’d say that caution should be exercised before placing all your healthcare eggs in the wrong basket.

For political reasons and in order to maintain the type of secrecy propagandists require in order to retain power, Chávez chose La Habana’s Centro de Investigaciones Médico Quirúrgicas (CIMEQ) and its incompetent doctors to treat his cancer. The hard truth is that according to some, the cancer that killed Chávez, had it been diagnosed correctly, was treatable.

The curious thing about all this is that Michael Moore’s Cuba wasn’t Chávez’s only choice for healthcare.  It is alleged that at a summit in Caracas, Brazil, President Dilma Rousseff told colleagues that Chávez would die as a “result of his excessive paranoia rather than as a consequence of his serious – yet treatable – cancer.”

Rousseff should know; she herself was successfully treated for lymphatic cancer at the Sirio-Libanese Hospital in Sao Paulo, Brazil. When Chávez refused the invitation to come to Sao Paulo for treatment, the Brazilian president even offered her country’s best doctors come to Caracas to assist with his care.  Chávez declined the offer and stuck it out in Cuba.

Over the years, Hugo Chávez has subsidized Cuba with $5 billion annually and sent them 115,000 barrels of oil a day, both of which should have ensured him top-notch medical care.  The problem is that the best that socialized medicine had to offer the ailing dictator turned out to be not quite good enough, because from the looks of things, not-quite-good-enough is the best socialized medicine has to offer – even to billionaire dictators.

A Venezuelan pulmonologist living in Naples, Florida named Jose Rafael Marquina with “first-hand sources and information about the president’s health,” called Chávez’s Cuba-care “complete disorder.”

Dr. Marquina explained that Cubano doctors originally misdiagnosed the nature and location of Chávez’s tumor and subsequently botched two surgeries.  Then, an already dire situation was compounded when Chávez was given high doses of the wrong chemotherapy drugs and steroids, which caused the tumor to “mutate,” making it impossible to treat.  This is how Cuban socialized medicine cared for an important bigwig?

Yet, even after all that, Chávez insisted on going back to Cuba for a third surgery. That type of allegiance can only be likened to Americans going through a disastrous first term with Barack Obama and then, rather than refusing further treatment, inviting the Mad Dr. O to continue administering high doses of the wrong medicine for another four years.

Marquina claims he repeatedly suggested to Chávez that he travel to the US, since in Cuba “they have no experience in these cases.”  Unmoved by such logic, Chávez chose to return to Cuba and the ramifications of that choice resulted in protracted suffering from an untreatable cancer, a severe respiratory infection, septic shock, mechanical respiration, excruciating pain, and premature death at 58 years of age.

To this, most would say hallelujah; the world is down one socialist dictator who surely won’t be missed.  But what Americans should really pay heed to is Hugo Chávez’s loyalty to Fidel Castro’s Cuban healthcare system and what it ultimately got him. Obama loyalists might not want to admit it, but Chávez’s blind faith in something that failed him bears a striking resemblance to the ‘Hope and Change’ crowd’s unwavering faith in both the president and his vision for Obamacare. The latter group may not realize it just yet, but because of their lapse in good judgment everyone is now at risk to meet the same painful, chaotic end as Hugo.

In the wake of Chávez’ death, what is worth noting is that the deceased Venezuelan president reigned over a South American country, had $2 billion squirreled away, and had unlimited access to doctors Cuba considered their finest. Yet despite those formidable perks, Hugo is still very much dead – which should prove to Obamacare believers that socialized medicine couldn’t even save one of the world’s most dedicated socialists.

Outsmarting a Chicago Smarty at His Own Game

Originally posted at American Thinker

It’s a week since the 2012 election, and personally, I’m totally disoriented.  I mistook Friday for Wednesday; I live on an island destroyed by hurricane Sandy; and my overall mood borders on despondent.  For me, anyway, it’s depressing that left-wing academes, women in vagina suits, illegal aliens, liberal progressives, 85% of all Muslims living in America, and Hugo Chávez, Vladimir Putin, Fidel Castro, and Mahmoud Ahmadinejad are all equally ecstatic about the re-election of Barack Obama.

While disconcerting to most, those types of accolades have not been wasted on the president.  He has mistaken a non-mandate for a mandate and is wasting zero time frenetically fast-tracking policies guaranteed to further limit the constitutional freedoms of every American, including those who were twirling around like Deadheads after the November 6 election was called.

And even though the Republicans retained control of the House, in the bleakness and disappointment that remains, there seems to be little hope left for those who thought the election would turn out differently.

The truth is that while the last vestiges of freedom hinge directly on state representatives who attest to conservative principles, hearing Barry’s favorite golf partner John Boehner saying that ObamaCare is now “the law of the land” has made many, including myself, want to throw ourselves off that “fiscal cliff” that’s currently the topic of alarmed discussion.

On the day following the election, Speaker Boehner politely acquiesced to the effect that the people’s choice indicates that indeed this is Barack Obama’s “moment.”  However, Boehner did maintain that while he’s committed to assisting the president in reining in entitlement programs and is anxious to support serious spending cuts, Congress is not open to punishing small business owners — i.e., “the rich” — with tax increases.

Sorry, but John Boehner feigning bravado coupled with Barack Obama’s self-assured swaggering has only added to the pervading depression that has gripped half the country.  What America is currently being subjected to by Barack Obama is the same “I won” attitude he had in 2009 when he proposed and implemented his failed $787-billion stimulus package.

Nonetheless, John Boehner has encouraged the president to take the lead.  Yet for the sake of the future of America, at this juncture, John is the one who should be doing the leading.

Instead of immediately extending an olive branch, what the speaker of the House should recognize is that he’s the one who holds the power when it comes to everything the cocksure Obama believes he now controls.  If Mr. Boehner spent more time paying attention and less time at the tanning salon, he might realize that the key to hamstringing Barack Obama’s goals is to outsmart a Chicago smarty at his own game.

How?  Well, before election week ended, the retired four-star general/civilian CIA director General David Petraeus admitted to an extramarital affair and promptly stepped down.  Petraeus’s shocking resignation took place one week prior to being compelled to testify before Congress about the seven-hour terrorist attack on the Libyan consulate in Benghazi that took the lives of four Americans on the anniversary of September 11.

As a group, most Obama voters have proven to be generally oblivious to the more serious issues facing America’s future.  Perhaps David Petraeus’s suspiciously timed resignation will be the thing that finally captures the attention of those who, thus far, have been more concerned with Big Bird and birth control than an American ambassador being raped, tortured, and killed.

Therefore, instead of allowing the haughty Barack Obama to continue calling the shots, House Republicans could use General Petraeus’s resignation as a catalyst to wrest control from the president and place it back into the hands of the American people.

To do so, it would be necessary for congressional Republicans to muster up the temerity to use the Benghazi cover-up as clout; then, once they’re hit in the paycheck, even those who supported the foolishly reelected Two-Term Terminator will be demanding answers about what went down in Libya.

In lieu of Petraeus’s testimony, the first step would be for Republicans to promptly petition the White House to hand over all correspondence relating to the Benghazi event.  John Boehner could then demand pertinent evidence including e-mails and videos from the Situation Room, from which place the terrorist attack was taped as it unfolded in real time.  If Barack Obama and his minions choose to continue to stonewall, the speaker will be justified in countering the president’s refusal by publicly refusing to comply with budgetary negotiations, including discussions about tax cuts, rates, and revenue.

If Mr. Boehner manages to effectively utilize the incident in Benghazi for political leverage and the nation subsequently careens forward over the “fiscal cliff,” the president can then be held accountable.  Moreover, Boehner will at least have a fighting chance to make the argument that the nation’s economic woes are a result of the White House refusing to come clean.

In other words, if, on behalf of the American people, Republicans in Congress suck it up and grasp the optimal set of circumstances currently before them, then, caught between a “fiscal cliff” and Benghazi, Barack Obama will be the one doing the surrendering, not the other way around.

Castro Criticizes Obama’s Fashion Choices

Originally posted at American Thinker blog

In the style section of online community Mamás Latinas, author Irina Gonzalez was all atwitter about Barack Obama’s fashion statement scheduled to be made at the mid-April Summit of the Americas in Cartagena, Colombia. Seems the President has commissioned Colombian designer Edgar Gomez Estevez to supply him with a full wardrobe of “very different and special” shirts called guayaberas.

Estevez explained how Obama’s request demands a labor of love. And from the sound of things the shirts are slated to be an eclectic blend of international diversity.  The 100% natural linen fibers originate in Normandy, France.  They then go to Ireland and Poland.  According to Estevez, “Making a guayabera is not something that can be delegated. All of the embroidery is done by hand. I cut the piece and the borders, and single mothers finish the details by hand, and then we tailor the custom shirt together.”

The Mamás Latinas feel that President Obama wearing a guayabera shows his support for the Latino community. But there’s one person who’s not all that impressed with Barack Obama’s attempt at sartorial diversity, and that’s former Cuban president Fidel Castro, a man usually dressed in either military fatigues or a tracksuit. And here’s why.

There is strong evidence that the lightweight Caribbean guayabera had its origins in Cuba. One Cuban legend says it was “created by a poor countryside seamstress sewing large patch-pockets onto her husband’s shirts so he could carry guava fruit from the field.”

At the request of Canada and the US, the Summit of the Americas, which hosts leaders from all across the Americas, banned communist Cuba from attending. And Obama chooses to wear traditional Cuban garb? In other words, Barack Obama, just for fun, might as well be wearing an ostentatious sombrero to a gathering he wouldn’t attend if Mexicans were invited.

The insensitive absurdity that the Mamás Latinas failed to notice was picked up on by the 85-year-old Fidel Castro and articulated in a letter published in the “Reflections” section of Cuba’s state-run newspaper Granma, where he criticized both Canada and the US, but spent much of the allotted column space addressing the Obama/guayabera controversy.

In his article, Castro argued that the shirts Obama will be wearing are Cuban, not Colombian or Mexican in origin, as some believe.  Fidel claimed “this Caribbean shirt comes from the shores of the Yayabo River in Cuba, so they were initially called yayaberas.”

Clearly miffed at Cuba’s exclusion from the summit, Castro wrote: “The funny thing, dear readers, is that Cuba is forbidden from this meeting, but the guayabera, no. Who can keep from laughing?”

Wearing Cuban garb to a summit he requested that Cuba be excluded from indicates that the President is totally clueless, either purposely attempting to aggravate Fidel Castro or feeling a little guilty about prohibiting the Republic of Cuba from attending the gathering, which confirms once and for all that Barack Obama’s guavas are in the wrong pockets after all.

Yet, despite the awkwardness of the clothing controversy, all is not lost. Barack Obama is not only a Latino fashion plate; he’s also on the cusp of a budding singing career. Recognizing the President’s vocal gift, the smitten Mamás Latinas have some advice for President Obama to win even more affection from the Latino community, and have recommended “5 songs President Obama should sing to woo the Latino vote.”

So, if at any point Obama wants to mend fences with our Cuban neighbor, he can start by admitting his Colombian-made guayaberas originated in Cuba. Then he can take the advice of the Mamás Latinas and serenade the former Cuban President with a few bars from the Buena Vista Social Club’s ode to Che Guevara, Hasta Siempre Commandante.

Castro’s Cathartic Conversation

Originally posted at American Thinker blog

Somebody alert Michael Moore.  Please — deliver an urgent communiqué to Barack Obama: former Cuban president Fidel Castro admitted the “communist economic model doesn’t work.” In a rare moment of honesty, Fidel came clean with American journalist Jeffrey Goldberg of The Atlantic magazine.

Goldberg asked the Cuban revolutionist if “Cuba’s economic system was worth exporting to other countries?” Over a casual lunch, Fidel nonchalantly replied in the following way: “The Cuban model doesn’t even work for us anymore.”

What a revelation! Tell that to the 11 million people subsisting on a government-rationed diet of rice and beans or standing on line in hopes of gaining access to a filthy, fly-infested “free” health clinic.

In Cuba, the  “state controls well over 90 percent of the economy, paying workers salaries of about $20 a month in return for free health care and education, and nearly free transportation and housing. At least a portion of every citizen’s food needs are sold to them through ration books at heavily subsidized prices.”

Castro’s candid comments will likely surprise Cuba apologists here in the U.S. like actor Jack Nicholson who, in 1998, proclaimed Cuba “a paradise” and Fidel Castro “a genius.”   Nicholson’s glowing assessment aside, Graham Boynton, in a 2006 travel article entitled “Cuba: Escaping Castro’s Shadow,” made the brilliant observation that there “is nothing glamorous about Cuba’s grinding poverty.”

Cuba’s current president, Castro’s brother Raul, also admits the country has an economic system that is less than stellar. In response, Raul has “instituted a series of limited economic reforms, and … warned Cubans that they need to start working harder and expecting less from the government. But the president has also made it clear he has no desire to depart from Cuba’s socialist system or embrace capitalism,” a political decision that bodes poorly for dirt-poor Cubans at the mercy of the state.

“Due to a serious illness that nearly killed him,” Fidel Castro “stepped down temporarily in July 2006…He resigned permanently two years later, but remains head of the Communist Party.”

Thus far, Castro’s return to the world stage has not brought with it the ex-president’s opinion on Cuba’s “stench of sewage …the decrepitude of the buildings and piles of rubble … [or] the corpse of a dog long dead” lying in the street waiting to be stumbled over, all vivid reminders that Castro’s Cuba is a crumbling, impoverished third-world country.

Moreover, since his miraculous recovery, octogenarian Fidel hasn’t yet discussed waning Cuban cigar exports, the Cuban band Buena Vista Social Club or spoken about the symbol of his regime’s failed plan embodied in “National School of Arts… a place that sums up the contradictions – the high aspirations, low achievements and broken dreams – of Castro’s Communist utopia.”

Instead, the ex-president focuses mostly on international affairs. “Even after the fall of the Soviet Union, Cuba clung to its communist system.”  Yet, after recommending the Russians turn the East Coast of the United States into a mushroom cloud, fifty years later Fidel’s deathbed epiphany has caused him to question “his own actions during the Cuban Missile Crisis, including his recommendation to Soviet leaders that they use nuclear weapons against the United States.”

Recently, a feeble Fidel has stepped forward as an international spokesperson. In the waning years of his life, Fidel Alejandro Castro Ruz has emerged as a harbinger of doom, warning the world about the threat Iran poses as a catalyst for nuclear war.

Let’s hope Fidel’s new found career as an apocalyptic prophet falls as abysmally flat as the prowess he demonstrated as communist Cuba’s dictatorial leader.

Elian Gonzalez 10 years later – American Thinker Blog – April 6, 2010

Originally posted at American Thinker blog

Elizabet Broton, Elian Gonzalez’s mother, was so determined to ensure her seven-year old son live in freedom that at four a.m. the fraught woman ushered her child toward a rickety boat to join a dozen people for a trek across dark, choppy waters from Cuba to the U.S.

Elizabet and ten others lost their lives at sea. Before dying Broton desperately attempted to assure Elian’s safety by placing the boy into a black inner tube to keep him from drowning. Elian was later found sleeping, fished from shark-infested waters and turned over to the U.S. Coast Guard.

Elian became the center of a child custody struggle defined by paternal rights versus a Cuban-American family who escaped Castro’s tyrannical regime that believed the child should be granted asylum.  Elian’s cousin Marisleysis Gonzalez became the public spokesperson for the child’s right to independence in a nation his mother died trying to reach.

After a lengthy, media driven custody battle Attorney General for the Clinton Administration, Janet Reno ordered armed federal authorities to enter the home of Elian’s extended family and intercept the child, returning him to his father Juan Miguel Gonzalez Quintana.

As Elian was placed into the elder Gonzalez’s arms Elizabet’s death was officially for naught.  Hope for Elian growing up liberated disappeared beneath the cold, murky waters between Cuba and the U.S. like a mother failing to find safe haven for an only child.

Fast-forward ten years and take a glimpse into Elian’s life as a teenager. Instead of a Miami Dolphins Jersey, “Cuba released photos of one-time exile cause celeb Elian Gonzalez wearing an olive-green military school uniform.” Elian Gonzalez is what youthful subjugation looks like when a boy, a heartbeat from freedom, is deprived the liberty Little Havana fought to hard, but failed to deliver.

In Cuba, Elian is a hero. Yearly, Fidel approved celebrations marking Gonzalez’s birthday because Elian epitomizes the height of Cuban triumph over America.  Lest we forget America willingly acquiesced in the battle to grant a defenseless child freedom, choosing instead to don riot gear and send a terrified child back under Castro inflicted bondage.

If Elian had been granted asylum, today he would be a teenager preparing to go to college with every opportunity for success ahead of him.  Instead, on the cusp of adulthood, Elian poses for propaganda photos sandwiched between Cuban army soldiers attending the Union of Young Communists congress in Havana.

Wonder if on the night Elian was placed in that doomed rowboat, Elizabeth envisioned, “Gonzalez formally join[ing] the Young Communist Union?”

To this day, Elian and parliament member father Juan Miguel are both closely monitored by state authorities who restrict the duo’s contact with the international press-unless of course it serves Cuban cant to put forward the image of Elian as a contented, committed Communist.

The youthful Gonzalez should have been wrapped in the America flag.  Instead a boy who once represented the quest for the God given right to be free, waves a Cuban flag symbolizing poverty, oppression, authoritarianism and misinformation.

As Barack Obama emulates Fidel Castro’s health care system and ferries a reluctant nation toward socialism, the scenario is reminiscent of a frightened Elian Gonzalez being wrested from the arms of libertyby an out of control federal government dictated to by a liberal American president.

Free people should take a good, long look at Elian Gonzalez and observe what our nation has the potential to become ten years down the line if, instead of moving in the opposite direction, America’s row boat continues to inch closer to Cuba’s shores.

Castro Praises Obama Care – American Thinker Blog – March 27, 2010

Originally posted at American Thinker Blog

Fidel Castro lauding Barack Obama’s successful passage of a U.S. health care reform bill is like the late serial killer Jeffrey Dahmer offering kudos to Michelle Obama for her “Let’s Move” healthy food campaign.

Castro is the architect of a health care system where patients froze to death in Mazorra mental hospital and where, according to John Stossel, Cubans are “crazy with desperation because of poor-quality care.” This man considers Barack Obama’s victory “miraculous.”  Amidst the kudos, Fidel chided Obama only for “taking so long to enact what communist Cuba achieved decades ago.” I say, Hallelujah!

Obama Care has plans to fund Community Health Centers similar Cuba, where clinics are “in every neighborhood.”  If all goes well, America too can attain low infant mortality rates by adopting objectives touted by Cuba. Take for example “Cuban obstetricians aborting fetuses when they think there might be a problem,” keeping infant mortality rates low in Cuba.

Cuban defector Dr. Julio Alfonso admitted personally participating in “70-80 abortions a day.” As the Obama “miracle” continues to mature, American doctors may one day possess a similar “right to choose” on behalf of the common good, regardless of whether mother’s agree, or not.

Cuban doctors have even admitted that, if a baby dies a few hours after being born, the child isn’t counted as ever having lived.” Cuban policy may explain Obama’s opposition to the Born Alive Act, which proposes administering medical assistance to children born alive during botched abortions.  Obama’s obvious objective is the accurate maintenance and integrity of birth data.

It’s comforting to know Fidel and Barry agree concerning insurance industry “mercenaries.”  Greedy Cuban doctors make $15.00 a month, avaricious private hospitals and clinics are non-existent and drugs are hard to come by.  Dealing with gluttonous leeches, like physicians and pharmaceuticals, are long term objectives the Obama administration can address in its unyielding quest to “strengthen the president’s hand against lobbyists and mercenaries.”

According to Cuban leadership Cuba is a great and benevolent world power. “Cuba provides free health care and education to all its citizens, and heavily subsidizes food, housing, utilities and transportation, policies that have earned it global praise.”  Emulating the Cuban success model, Barack Obama has put government in control of health care, student loans, mortgage companies, banks and car companies.  The dream of government food subsidies is likely one health-care reform heartbeat away.

One thing, Fidel criticized Obama for was “lack of leadership on climate change and immigration reform.”  Castro is either impatient or uninformed; Barack Obama is on the policy precipice of pushing through cap and trade and immigration reform, which should accomplish government control of utilities and cement Obama an extended stay in Washington DC in a fashion Zimbabwe Dictator Robert Mugabe would applaud.

Fidel failed to mention, but is likely also very impressed with Obama’s successful effort undermining private sector employment, while government jobs are on the upswing, similar to Cuba where 75% of the labor force is employed by the state.

If Obama’s “miraculous” health-care reform runs into budgetary issues in the future, further guidance can always be gleaned from Obama’s obsequious Cuban mentor.  Fidel Castro is chock full of inspirational, health-care reform, cost saving ideas Obama can  glean from–such as, “a man should not live beyond the age when he begins to deteriorate, when the flame that lighted the brightest moment of his life has weakened.”  Now that’s a socialistic idea that may well make its way to our shores from Cuba, similar to how refugees float to America on inner tubes, slowly, but no less determined.

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