The Land of Make-Believe


My last article was a review of Humberto Fontova's book about Castro and Cuba , Fidel, Hollywood 's Favorite Tyrant.

Every letter I got from a Cuban-American said yes, you got it right. Yet I also got some letters praising Castro. Here is one:

"Dear Bob,

"I've just read your article on Cuba and I just returned from Cuba , a place where I travel regularly. I know also the US . I've been there. I wonder how often you've been to Cuba recently."

I've never been to Cuba . I never said in the article that I had. I said some of my friends had been there. I seriously doubt he knows the US , having "been there." To really understand a country, you have to be born and raised in it. Passing through occasionally and going "Yoo hoo!" to his friends doesn't make him an expert on the US .

"Your article is just another product of lies about other countries, a very typical product of US arrogancy."

A product of lies about other countries? That sentence doesn't make any sense. I suppose there's a logical fallacy that in it somewhere, but I don't know what it is. And my article is a product of US arrogancy? Cool! He means there's no difference between me and the US ? I wish. There'd be some changes here, I guarantee you that!

"I can assure you that for instance the medical care of the Cuban population is far better than in your own country."

Uh oh, Cloud Coo-Coo Land! As best as I can tell, he's saying that the socialized health care in Cuba is better than the somewhat-socialized health care in the US . I doubt that. I'm certainly no fan of the health-care system here --because it is somewhat socialized -- but I'll take my chances here rather than in Cuba . I'll take my chances here than in Canada , too, the socialized health care system of which would probably collapse if it wasn't able to be a parasite on ours.

"On my frequent travels to Cuba , I have never met an analphabet. I met heaps of them in the US ."

I've never met an analphabet, either, even heaps of them. I don't even know what it/they are. It/they sound pretty icky, though.

"And many of those US citizens who went to a school don't have half the culture and education of Cubans."

Well, golly gee, I wonder why that might be? Could the problem be the socialized government-school system in the US ? Hmmm . . . maybe the schools in Cuba are better! They make them smart to want to leave the place -- 20% of the population tried to escape.

"It is true: Cubans are normally poor."

Normally poor?! Well, of course, it's normal to be poor under socialism and communism. The whole human race has been normally poor throughout its existence, until it discovered what capitalism and the free market can do.

"One reason: the injust and murderous blockage of the island imposed by all of your governments since the 60s."

Even a blind pig can find an acorn every once in a while, and this one just found one: The embargo has been counterproductive. Alexis de Tocqueville wrote about what he called "the Revolution of Rising Expectations": the ground-down and poor don't revolt. When things get better is when they rise up. If the US had really wanted to get rid of Castro, we should have been trading with the place. Or carpet-bombing it with DVD players and Levis . Castro would have been gone a long time ago.

"And please: don't start calculations on how many people Castro might have killed. Your country has the world record of bombings and killings of innocent people in dozens of countries in the world."

The article was about Cuba , not the US . And I didn't do the calculations on how many people Castro murdered, Fontova did. I'm also well aware of all the problems in the US -- empire, imperialism, inflation, deficits, the crazed neocons, the even more crazed Jesus-is-gonna-return types. I know all about those things. I also know more about Cuba than the writer. If he knew as much as he thinks he does, he wouldn't be defending the place. And here's a shock for him -- Europe has the world record for murdering people, not the US .

"So you are nor really in a position to give lessons of decency to the world."

I think he means "not" instead of "nor." And as a matter of fact, I am in a position to give lessons. For one thing, I'm a lot smarter and informed than the retard who wrote this letter. I understand Cuba is a bad place to live, but has with some good in it, just as I understand the US is a good place to live, with some bad in it. Both need more liberty and free markets. A lot more.

"So don't write about things you have no idea about."

He should take his own advice. And I do know what I'm talking about. It's really not that hard, fella. The less the government is involved in society, and the more liberty there is, the better things are for everyone. It's just that simple.

"By the way: I am neither a communist, nor in any other way related to political propaganda."

Oh, come on, get real. His whole letter is political propaganda. And as for being a communist, I'd bet money this guy is a leftist. His whole self-deluded Potemkin-Village mentality just stinks of it.

"I just can't stand people writing cheap propaganda leaflets like you do."

Heck, my propaganda wasn't cheap -- it was free! I don't get paid. It wasn't a leaflet -- it was on the Internet. There is a difference. Always glad to enlighten the ignorant about these things.

" Cuba is today a well respected country in most nations of this world."

I'm waiting for names.

"I travel and apart from that - unlike most Americans - speak a couple of languages."

What does that have to do with Cuba ? I traveled to Tennessee a year ago, but that's doesn't make me an expert on the Beverly Hillbillies and Petticoat Junction -- even though I know the former are from Bugtussle. (By the way, my ancestors are from Tennessee , so I can make fun of the place all I want.)

"Thousands of Cuban doctors are working in different parts of this world."

Really? First I heard of that. And if they are, I'm sure Castro isn't doing it out of the goodness of his heart. Could it be --hmmm -- communist propaganda?

"How many US doctores do that?"

I have no idea how many US "doctores" are helping out in other countries. But I know the writer doesn't, either.

"Oh yes, I forgot: you send soldiers and bombs to different parts of our world. This is your contribution. Therefore the US is so well respected everywhere and this is the reason why US embassies are more like medieval fortresses than embassies of 'freedom.'"

I repeat, the article was about Cuba , not the US . And I also repeat: I am well aware of the flaws of the US . I've published close to 300 articles, many of things about the mistakes the US is making. Of course, the writer just fired off his letter without reading anything I've written except this one article about Castro, so he knows nothing about my past writing. I'd say he doesn't know much about anything, not with both his eyes squinched shut against reality.

And I'm not the one sending soldiers and bombs all over the world. Does he think I'm responsible for what the US does? Sounds like he believes in collective guilt. That is one of Europe 's contributions to the 20th Century.

"Greetings from Spain ."

I wonder if he's still mad because Spain no longer controls Cuba ?

I find this to be a very odd letter. He can see the flaws in the US but not the good parts. He can see the good parts of Cuba -- including ones that don't exist -- but not the bad parts. In fact, he seems to think Cuba is better than the US . However, I don't see Americans riding rickety boats to escape to Cuba . I do see the opposite, though. Of course, the writer will ignore that. He'll always ignore that.

What we're dealing with me is that which animates all leftists -- envy. He envies the power of the US , a power I well know is used for both good and bad. He'd like to bring the US down, like all the envious. He wants everyone to be equal -- it's why he supports socialized medicine. Since Cuba really doesn't have much to recommend it right now, all he can praise is its over-hyped medical-care system. Tear down the US (which he probably believes is pure capitalist) and elevate the worker's paradise of Cuba . That's leftism, alright.

Some of my e-mailers told me that southern Florida is set up to invade Cuba with capital and investment the day Castro croaks and the place opens up. With any luck, this great little island can be a free market paradise.

And you know what? If it ever happens, the writer of this letter to me won't able to stand it.

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