Our lunch with Fidel

If we'd been at the table, Castro would've had a lot of 'splainin' to do

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Oh, to find just the right greeting card. Do they even have American Greetings in Cuba?

If so, do you suppose they have one of those "Sorry I messed up your country with my stupid revolution" cards?

Actually, we're pretty sure there's an unopened case of them. Fidel Castro's not likely to buy one anytime soon.

Yet, the aging, infirm and apparently mellowing Cuban strongman now admits that his stewardship has pretty much been a mistake.

A disaster, from where we sit.

Castro made the amazing admission in a meeting with American journalist Jeffrey Goldberg.

Goldberg, who writes for the Atlantic , asked over lunch whether Castro thought the Cuban model of Marxism is still something he thinks is worth exporting.

"The Cuban model doesn't even work for us anymore," Castro replied in an offhanded way, according to Goldberg.

Goldberg's blog about the affair seems to be more fascinated with what Castro ate -- and with the dolphin show Castro took him to the next day. And perhaps out of an excess of politeness, Goldberg doesn't even appear to have asked a follow-up question of Castro.

Boy, would we have! We're not sure what would've hit the lunch table first -- our forks or our jaws!

Why don't you think it's working, Mr. President? What do you mean it doesn't work "anymore" -- when did it work, and what has changed to make it not work now? Whose fault is it? Do you accept responsibility for any of it? Is it just the Cuban brand of Marxism that doesn't work, or Marxism in general?

Will you apologize to the Cuban people for impoverishing several generations of them? How can you give someone back his life?

Is it just an economic problem sir? Or is it really political? Can you even separate the two?

If it's a political failure too, and not just an economic one, are you going to apologize? Admit you were wrong? Release all the political prisoners? Buy airline tickets for all the refugees you inspired to leave for greener pastures? Pay reparations to the families of those who died fleeing your failed state?

Will you apologize to the American people for trying to get them nuked during the missile crisis? For all your many lies and slanders toward the yanquis to the north? For the untold pain of the embargo, which your own belligerence is singularly responsible for? Will you apologize and make reparations to other countries you've meddled with in the hemisphere over the decades -- trying to export a tyranny you now admit doesn't work?

Nah, we didn't think so.

Perhaps Castro's odd tangential rebuke of his own legacy will be seized upon as permission for a more invigorated Cuban-style perestroika . Let's hope so. But Mr. President, your mild, carefree "Gee, this doesn't seem to be working" little throwaway remark, contemptible enough in its breeziness, is patently offensive without some sort of mea culpa.

Then again, "Sorry I messed up your country with my stupid revolution" wouldn't be much better.

Comments (15) Add comment
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maggiemae
0
Points
maggiemae 09/11/10 - 05:54 am
0
0
It appears that we will soon

It appears that we will soon find out for ourselves.

johnston.cliff
2
Points
johnston.cliff 09/11/10 - 06:15 am
0
0
If the Dems are able to pull

If the Dems are able to pull a "Minnesota election" in November and retain control of congress, you are right maggiemae.

Techfan
6461
Points
Techfan 09/11/10 - 06:49 am
0
0
Yes, life in Cuba was all

Yes, life in Cuba was all sunshine, lollipops, and rainbows under Batista.

dashiel
176
Points
dashiel 09/11/10 - 07:37 am
0
0
But as every good fascist

But as every good fascist knows, the mafia was much more efficient than Fidel & Raoul's Marx Brothers Marxism. Goodfellas don't waste money on necessities.

maninthepi
0
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maninthepi 09/11/10 - 09:02 am
0
0
if my old brain remembers

if my old brain remembers right was it not the u s that put
fidel in power to replace batista

gaspringwater
3
Points
gaspringwater 09/11/10 - 09:18 am
0
0
Castro is just as good as

Castro is just as good as American politicians. He doesn't always mean what he says, especially about the economy. And you mean some American can keep a straight face and ask an old tyrant like Castro to apologize after we've had George Bush and Chaney.

http://www.reuters.com/article/idUSTRE6894UK20100910

omnomnom
3964
Points
omnomnom 09/11/10 - 09:27 am
0
0
I just would like to be able

I just would like to be able to visit the country without having to go to Canada or Mexico führerst.

maggiemae
0
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maggiemae 09/11/10 - 10:10 am
0
0
man in the..Yes the US felt

man in the..Yes the US felt that Castro was the lesser of two evils. Was it to be Batista or Castro. Fifty years later, we still don't know the answer.
I talked with two men once who were mercenaries working FOR Castro ....Now that was something to hear.

Riverman1
79223
Points
Riverman1 09/11/10 - 10:15 am
0
0
Cuba is a potential gold mine

Cuba is a potential gold mine for classic car collectors if we can get it to open up. They have more 1950's era classic cars on the road than you can imagine. The good part is that they don't even know they are classics because that's all they have.

Take a Ford Focus down there and you would draw a crowd at the Havana Socialist Farmers' Market.

gaspringwater
3
Points
gaspringwater 09/11/10 - 11:40 am
0
0
It would be a HOOT if it

It would be a HOOT if it wasn't so pathetic. Russia killed an estimated 5 million people in Gulags. And they surreptitiously killed a lot of American pilots in Korea. But we suck up to Russia. China killed thousand of Americans in Korea and they provided all the armament that North Vietnam used to kill thousands more Americans. And China killed an estimated 20 million people in the 1970's Cultural Revolution. Yet we suck up to China and Vietnam.

But Castro has never killed an American and we're pouted, fumed and sanctioned him for half a century. He's just gets our goat. We pride ourselves on being smart! Print holier than thou editorials.

dashiel
176
Points
dashiel 09/11/10 - 12:42 pm
0
0
Scarcity has been good for

Scarcity has been good for Cuba's ecology. Forests there teem with birds found nowhere else on Earth--including very likely Ivorybill Woodpeckers. And if you think the cars are something, consider the mechanics! Do you know one who could keep a Buick Roadmaster running on Russian parts? Poor as the island is, it still manages to export a disproportionate number of world class physicians, artists, baseball players, etc.--and not merely the publicized defectors, either. Of course the fidelistas get no credit for positive contributions. We could bulldoze them into modern mediocrity overnight so they could live happily ever after--just like us. I can hardly wait.

GAterp
2
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GAterp 09/11/10 - 02:47 pm
0
0
When the US and Cuba

When the US and Cuba re-establish political relationships (after Fidel kicks the bucket), then Cuba will change, hopefully for the better. We'll all be vacationing there in the next decade.

TheFederalist
1
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TheFederalist 09/11/10 - 04:17 pm
0
0
Good column ACES! Yes

Good column ACES!

Yes indeed, our President could really learn something from good ol' Fidel!

The ability to say, " I was wrong, and I'm sorry", to the American people, who are really deserving of an apology!

The American people, who he has insulted, lied to, been arrogant to, condescending to, and who he invited to join him in restoring hope and change. Instead, all that has happened, is we were all, "Taken for a ride"!

Yes....The Enlightened One really has a lot of 'splainin' to do!

maggiemae
0
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maggiemae 09/11/10 - 06:56 pm
0
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Building of the Islamic

Building of the Islamic mosque and a man named Jones wanting his 10 mins of fame is intended to take our attention from other far worse dangers such as the shrinking dollar.

Riverman1
79223
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Riverman1 09/11/10 - 09:06 pm
0
0
Dashiel, the only well known

Dashiel, the only well known physician Cuba produced that I know of is Che Guevarra.

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