11.26.2016 10:08 AM


Summarized brilliantly by the paper that could do it best, the Miami Herald:


  1. dave constable says:

    One outcome of this 20th Century man’s passing, for sure, is that now we can look forward to all the North American mainstream media that has been telling us the real truth about Castro and Cuba since 1960 telling it to us all over…all the while justifying our government’s moves to regulate what they call “fake news.”

  2. Ray says:

    ….and would’ve likely made a career in professional baseball had he not become a Revolucionario.

    Fascinating albeit paradoxical icon of the 20th century. Well said.

  3. Mark says:

    Who doesn’t have some ups and downs…?

    (Nice to see something that isn’t just simplistic “good” vs. “evil”, more fuel for the base(s) crap)

  4. P. Brenn says:

    good riddance – the brother is no spring chicken either… there will be a crackdown on the cuban people as all are forced to pay homage to the dictator/murderer
    oh ya they have good dental care …

  5. P. Brenn says:

    ask great ana navarro – she tells it like it is on Cuba

  6. Charlie says:

    Its insanely fascinating how polarizing Fidel Castro is; I had no idea.

    The reaction to his death has been a little surprising to me. Now I’m trying to learn why exactly Cuban Americans hated Castro so much.

    I knew there was degree of animosity held towards Cuba by those who fled the island nation, but I still don’t quite understand the history behind it beyond anecdotes relating to capitalism versus communism.

    I will say this, though: Fidel Castro will go down in history as the only man who was successfully able stare down American imperialism and laugh in the face of numerous assassination attempts. That says something.

    • monkey says:

      Most who left were amongst the well to do Cubans and they are bitter as he confiscated all their property without any compensation so quite understandable. Yes he wanted to help the poor, chasing away the rich doesn’t work, better to just have a progressive taxation system like most developed countries have and use that for re-distribution. Another interesting tidbit is the average Cuban-American is a lighter in complexion than most in Cuba today. Back then Cuba was quite segregated between whites and Blacks and most who fled to the US were generally of Spanish ancestry whereas relatively few Blacks left. Also since then intermarriage has become a lot more common so most Cubans today are mixed race and there isn’t nearly as much segregation between the black and white population. As for other communist countries, the US didn’t have the same incentive. In Eastern Europe they’ve obviously fallen since while for China, they are so big than the US would suffer if they cut off trade whereas Cuba is small enough they don’t lose much. Never mind of the US chinese population, most back in the day came prior to Mao while when the next wave happened in the 80s and 90s, most were from Hong Kong instead of mainland China while since then most come from mainland China, but it more of a mixed system. Of the Vietnamese-Americans most were strongly anti-communist and such much like Cuban-Americans generally vote Republican until recently (in fact the swing towards the Democrats was a big reason Hillary Clinton was the first Democrat to win Orange County since FDR in 1932) however in 1995 there was a strong pressure from the business community to end the embargo on Vietnam as many feared they would lose a competitive edge to Canadians and Europeans who didn’t face such restrictions. In both China and Vietnam, there is a lot more private ownership than Cuba and restrictions on foreign investment are not nearly as tight never mind both are a lot bigger thus the business community wouldn’t tolerate such an embargo whereas in Cuba asides from perhaps Airbnb there are far fewer opportunities for businesses as most of the economy is still state owned and where it is private its mostly small business and you still have to pay the government and the government pays the wages of the employees, so that is essentially the reason. Also the Vietnamese Americans are mostly in California which is a solid blue state while the Cubans are in Florida which is a swing state. If Florida weren’t a swing state, it would probably be gone by now.

      • Dan Calda says:

        Castro offered compensation.
        America refused.

        Every other country settled.

        He was the only Latin American Leader that stood up to US death squads…and survived.

        World class free health care for Cubans.
        World class free education for Cubans.
        World class organic agriculture.

        Helping brothers in Africa to fight US Imperialism.

        Yup a heathen.

    • Rob says:

      Have a look at some of the reports and case profiles here http://cubaarchive.org/wordpress/reports/

      and maybe you will understand why he was hated.

    • T. Brown says:

      Had Castro not had the backing of the Soviet Union, he would have lasted about five minutes “staring down” the United States. He was merely a pawn in the Americas just as the Soviet satellites in Eastern Europe. If you feel Soviet imperialism to be a benign force, you would do well to read Solzhenitsyn’s Gulag Archipelago. It is evident you are driving without a rear-view mirror, historically speaking.

      • Charlie says:


        You’ve managed to jump to several conclusions here in your post.

        Might I suggest you take a moment to adequately assess one’s comments before interjecting with a hot-take? Could save you from making absolutely baseless assertions about another’s perspectives.

  7. Curt says:

    Anybody remember the Cuban Missile Crisis? Hiding under your desk at school? Trudeau is going a bit too far in his praise for this dictator. I predict His approval numbers in two more weeks will be down by another 10%.

    • smelter rat says:

      I remember that being a Russian issue.

      • dave constable says:

        I remember that USA had missiles in Turkey, right by USSR, and so USSR took advantage of their new connection with Cuba to plant missiles right by USA. Each night I would go hme from work and watch the news, and look at Kennedy talk about USSR aggressive moves, and I would think, ‘You sob’s are going to incinerate us all to keep USSR from doing to you what you have been doing to them.’

  8. Liz J says:

    I find our PM’s response to Castro’s passing a disgrace of the highest order. It in no way represents what we stand for as a nation and his sentiments are an offense to those who fight for human rights everywhere.

    • dave constable says:

      I did not vote for this guy, and won’t next time, but I find his response in keeping with a lot of responses around the world…outside the Washington Consensus.

  9. monkey says:

    Would generally agree although would add that of all the current and past communist regimes, his along with North Korea are the only two that stuck to the communist ideology even when it was clear it wasn’t working. The USSR under Gorbachev with his glasnost and perestroika moved away from this and ultimately collapsed although Putin is probably in many ways as bad, nonetheless most of the former USSR satellite states (which are now part of NATO and the EU) are doing a lot better. Also China and Vietnam may still be communist in name, but the reforms of the Doi Mai in Vietnam and reforms of Deng Xiaoping have allowed for robust economic growth with millions in both countries lifted out of poverty whereas Castro’s insistence on sticking to the centrally planned economy has kept Cuba stuck where it is. The only reason it’s GDP per capita is above Vietnam and not far behind China is it started out way ahead of those two. As Canada and almost every Western European country have shown, you can have a top notch education and health care system without being a dictatorship. The problem is Cuban propaganda always pointed to the US and used their weak health care and education system as proof liberal democracies don’t work when in fact US is an exception in its health care and education system amongst liberal democracies. Another thing bad about him is the wages Cubans make. Yes the government takes care of the people in providing the basics at little or no cost, but the average monthly wage is still $20 a month, otherwise the average Cuban makes every month what most of us make every hour. In fact in Cuba, those working in restaurants in touristy areas and hotels ironically have some of the highest wages being higher than a doctor as they get tips from foreign tourists which is where most of their income comes from and they get paid by foreigners in convertible pesos instead of regular pesos and convertible pesos are worth 25 times as much.

  10. smelter rat says:

    I assume all those shitting on his grave have never once sat on a beach at an all inclusive Cuban resort.

    • Steve T says:

      Visiting a country and supporting its people economically through tourism does not mean you support all the actions of the government.

      Also, until we stop seeing people dying when they crowd on boats to flee Cuba to the U.S., I’ll have trouble believing that Cuba is some sort of paradise where everyone is equal and flourishing.

  11. monkey says:

    Both are bad, not sure on the stats which are worse.

  12. Ray says:

    No denying the right has blood on their hands, but you appear to conveniently overlook Stalin, Mao, and Pol Pot. Godwin aside, their tally alone would make even Hitler blush.

  13. Al in Cranbrook says:

    As usual, Scot, you have no clue of what you speak.


    Between Stalin and Mao, the actual death toll is very likely north of 100,000,000 people murdered, one way or another, but not including war, by their own governments.

    Cuba, an interesting place to visit, but who in hell would want to live there, eh? Certainly not the over 1,000,000 who fled this murderous tyrant’s regime.

    Marco Rubio’s twitter take on JT’s tribute: “Is this a real statement or a parody? Because if this is a real statement from the PM of Canada it is shameful & embarrassing.” Yes, it certainly is! I think it’s safe to assume Mr. Rubio is somewhat more informed on this subject than most.

  14. Kevin says:

    I’m grateful to PM Trudeau for acknowledging Mr. Castro’s death with dignity and respect.

  15. dave constable says:

    The way I remember circa 1960, Castro came to t he northeast cities to speak at meetings of the American business elite. He hur their feelings when he said that Cubans would own and run Cuba. They reacted, and he suddenly went home. After that, the accusations and vilification began. Apparently Eisenhower, in one of his last actions as pres, okayed a pan to get rid of Castro.
    I remember at the time thinking that Washington was driving Cuba into a wilderness, and the canny Kruschev reached out; Castro reached back.
    For the decades since, a major impact on Cuba and its people has been the knowledge that the most powerful economy and military on the planet is looking for a way to crush them, and bring back the casinos and the American landowners. As often happens, that strengthens a centralizing trend, and feeds the ‘dictatorship/tyrant ‘ narrative of the detractors of Castro’s Cuba.

    I’ve always known people who have been to Cuba, to see, to vacation, to work. I got from them the sense of poverty and constant wariness of USA power, but not tyrannical repression.

    (As we know, any poverty in Cuba is caused by Communism…any poverty in USA and Canada si the fault of the poor.)

  16. Frank says:

    Lol, “When it comes to slaughtering people, right wing regimes are way out in the lead”. That’s a good one!I

  17. Armand says:

    I suspect you flunked history in high school.

  18. Ted says:

    Huh? Scot, are you justifying praising someone who has killed thousands of his opponents and jailed hundreds of thousands because numerous Conservatives vacation in Cuba? Please give you head a shake. Are you trying the old game of avoiding the issue by pointing the finger at someone else?

    Did Castro do awful crimes against humanity? Should he be praised on his passing? Answer these questions and use logic to defend your point of view…do not shell game this!

  19. Ronald O'Dowd says:


    At least with Batista they had whorehouses and gambling!

  20. T. Brown says:

    The first genocide of this century is being committed by the Islamist and Arab supremacist Janjaweed (450,000 murdered) – their weapons are coming almost entirely via organs of the Chinese Communist Party. So, actually wrong. Communism and Islam are still way out in front of “right wing regimes”.

  21. Steve T says:

    Wow – nice generalization. Are we really going to do the left-right thing? The right has Adolf Hitler, the left has Josef Satlin. The right has…. the left has….

    And it’s a surprise that an idiot like Trump gets elected? With the cartoonish villainization of broad swaths of people, you can see where the frustration comes from.

  22. Dan Forth says:

    Maybe the time to go is coming. I refuse to visit dictatorships for vacations. Cheap holidays with lousy food.

  23. Ron says:

    Well, with Trump in the White House at least the price of accommodations will go back down in Havana.

  24. Doug Brown says:

    Gerald Butts must be on vacation.

  25. Montréalaise says:

    Canadians have been vacationing in Cuba because it’s cheap, not because they admire the Cuban government or its policies. You can get an all-inclusive one week vacation in Cuba, airfare included, for less than $1,000 – where else in the Caribbean can you get that? By the way, Cuban chambermaids and waiters at hotels catering to foreigners earn more than the island’s doctors, since they get tips from tourists and doctors get paid a measly wage by the state.

  26. Kelly says:

    Communist regimes don’t just happen. The conditions have to be right for their establishment, in the first place. In the case of Cuba, it was a murderous, right wing dictatorship serving the interests of wealthy white Cubans and American business interests, including organized crime syndicates. That’s not controversial. Most of the people who left Cuba and fled to Florida benefited from the previous state of affairs. They had their property confiscated, and as supporters of the losing side in a war, they were under legitimate threat. This is always the case. The same thing happened when Fascists took over Chile and Argentina. Everywhere we are pushed around by powerful interests who murder in the name of freedom. Several hundred thousand killed in Iraq by US and British troops, basically working for oil companies, more thousands in Libya. Castro supporters would argue that a leftwing dictatorship was necessary to prevent the return of a right wing dictatorship from returning. They’re likely correct.

  27. Jim Keegan says:

    In Cuba, no doubt….

  28. Rich says:

    I would like anyone to justify heart-warming remarks in relation to a butcher who slaughtered 100,000 people.
    Something a bit more relevant than Castro was “controversial” are needed …(cough).
    Saying Castro served his people for 50 years rather misses the point methinks….it’s right up with ..”ah yes…but he made the trains run on time”. A statement about support for the Cuban people of course ….but those comments are not those of a rube…they are comments of a boob.
    Trudeau seems to be a hidebound communist apologist what with his comments about China and now this disgusting display.

  29. André says:

    Fidel Castro is a hero to the Canadian leftist NDP, and PM Justin Trudeau who called him “Uncle Fidel” and sat on his lap as a child when visiting Cuba with his father PET.
    Is Justin still golden or has his gloss dimmed yet?

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