The pro-Casto eulogies from Mr. Trudeau in Canada, Jesse, Jackson, Jill Stein and others have been vomit inducing. There is a certain romance with Cuba that some statists just can’t shake. They like the image of the guerrilla emerging out of the Sierra Maestra to take Havana and wrestle power away from a US backed dictator. They like that Castro was able to survive in the shadow of the United States and thumb his nose. I understand.
However, the image of the romantic revolutionary doesn’t hold in the face of socialist Cuba, where enemies of the state were tortured, elections were nonexistent (real elections anyway), gays were sent to “re-education” camps, people starved while Communist Party members lived in relative comfort, and freedom of speech was/is but a dream.
Sure there were hospitals and schools, but prisons have “free healthcare” and “education” too. Cuba was an open air prison with palm trees under Castro.
The thing about socialism is this: To the degree that it is allowed to infect an economy that economy eventually fails. A little bit of socialism equals a little bit of failure in the long run. Total socialism (like in Cuba) equals total economic failure eventually (as we see).
Fundamentally socialism denies the reality of prices. When prices are not allowed to reflect the reality of the marketplace the economy begins to misfire and warp. As a regime recognizes that a particular system of price repression is becoming more and more dysfunctional the regime, and we have seen this over and over, in Nicaragua, Venezuela, the Soviet Union, and many other places, resits. As things get even more dysfunctional a regime MUST use force to keep the lie going. Sometimes this means locking people up in dungeons. Sometimes it means wholesale genocide as we saw in Stalin’s USSR and in Mao’s China.
Socialism is the great delusion of the 20th Century. It’s great that Castro was able to see most of the world wake up from this delusion and that he got to see the failure of socialism all across Latin America. Glad he hung on. Perhaps the victims of Casto’s regime can find some solace in that. (But probably not.)