John K Clark (
Sun, 15 Mar 1998 22:48:27 -0800 (PST)


>Cuba, besides Chile, is still one of the healthiest nations in Latin
>America. I have posted statistics on this before, but you have
>rejected them because they were obviously from too "liberal" sources
>(United Nations and such). By saying that something is "totally
>false", however, and thereby making yourself the source for your
>claims, you don't do much to refute my statements. Actually, you,
>John Clark and others have not posted a single source, a single
>document to support your claims. True believers, as John said
>(referring to me).

I was going to just ignore our friend Erik The Red because I've learned that
logic no longer plays a part in his world view so there is little to say,
but my name was mentioned and for the benefit of others I have to say a few
things. Eric, we talked about all this in private mail months ago, the reason
nobody takes your statistics seriously, impressive though they look with all
those decimal places, is that 92.3876256211% of the statistics coming out of
a police state are wrong.

The only figures I would believe coming out of Cuba would be things like
imports and exports and immigration and emigration, things that can be
confirmed by third parties, otherwise it's just so much verbiage. Castro
tells his subjects to think only happy thoughts, thoughts that make him look
good, so can you conceive of one reason why his statistics would have the
slightest relationship to reality? If infant mortality was terrible he would
say it was good, if it was good he'd say it was great, if it was great he'd
say no child has ever died in Cuba since he took power.

So let's look at how people vote with their feet, it's exclusively one way,
all out of Cuba. A strange thing to happen in a wealthy happy land.
Since Castro took power millions of people, close to 25% of the population,
have abandoned Cuba, and the didn't go to the USSR, they went to a
capitalistic country. Think about it, they abandoned everything they had and
made a very risky voyage across the open sea in a flimsy raft to a country
with different customs and a different language. They wouldn't do that unless
they were desperate, they wouldn't do that unless they hated Castro with an
intensity I can hardly imagine.

What about the only other economic statistic Castro can't control, trade?
Well, there isn't much of it. If Cuba had something that the rest of the
world wanted there would be lots of trade and the US government would not be
able to stop it, but all it has to offer is cigars and a little sugar.
For more than 20 years the USSR bought all of Cuba's sugar at a price 40%
greater than the world market price to help prop up Castro. It wasn't enough.

Today Castro is crying that few companies want to invest in his country, but
there are very good reasons why a sane company would think long and hard
before it made a large investment in Cuba. When Castro came to power he
nationalized all foreign operations, he stole every bit of it and paid
absolutely nothing to anyone for it. If he did it once he can do it again.
Fool me once shame on you, fool me twice shame on me.

By the way, Cuba may be destitute now but it wasn't always that way. Castro
did not inherit a poor country, in 1959 it had the third highest standard of
living in the western hemisphere, only the USA and Canada were higher. The
fact that for a few days in 1962 Castro brought the human race closer to
the brink of extinction than anytime in the last ten thousand years does not
increase my admiration of him.

>The best definition of freedom probably comes from the

Anarcho-socialists, is that anything like jumbo shrimp? "We want no
government and we want the government to take your money so it can
distribute it fairly, we want no government but we want the government to
decide what is fair and what is not."

>Not being oppressed by power structures while, at the same time,
>helping to advance evolution. [...] Evolution of humanity. Through
>progress. By spreading information.

I'm not interested in natural Evolution except as a historic relic that
explains how we got here, it's much too slow and stupid for my taste.
Evolution had its shot at making intelligence, now it's our turn.

>Such a freedom is entirely impossible in a "free market".

The sad thing is that you not only oppose a free market in money and goods
but also ideas.

John K Clark

Version: 2.6.i