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realclearworld

From the mailbag

This was in my inbox this morning:

Dear Mr. Prieto,

I am not Cuban myself, but I have long had a great affinity for the Cuban exile community in this country and elsewhere. One of my favorite professors in college was Cuban-American, and he is the person that piqued my interest in Cuba. After reading Against All Hope by Armando Valladares, I was filled with horror at the human rights abuse had a new appreciation of my country as well as the plight of the Cuban people. I was an outspoken advocate of Elian Gonzalez and I have not forgotten the nefarious liars Eric Holder and the Greg Craig and am disgusted but not particularly surprised that they now find themselves involved in this administration. ...All that to say this... I frequently look online for signs of revolt in the Cuban American community against Obama and I really don't see much of it. Why? I think about the brave people that fled Cuba and started all over again in a country where they had nothing and spoke a different language, and prevailed here. I would think that these people who fled in the early years of Castro would be getting a terminal case of deja vu. Surely hackles were raised when insurance companies, banks and automobile manufacturers were nationalized. Now he is forming the American version of the CDR on the White House website???? Hello???? Maybe there is a big movement in Miami and elsewhere and I'm missing it, but I've looked for it on the web and have come up largely empty. Why aren't Cuban Americans by the millions demonstrating in the streets? Are they, and I don't know about it? I just don't get it. I'm writing to you, because yours was one of the few conservative websites I found.

I applaud your efforts, your opinions and your wise and witty website. Thanks for taking the time to read my e-mail.

Baffled in Cincinnati,

(name withheld)

44 comments to From the mailbag

  • dccuban

    Interesting letter, but trying to equate Obama's policies with Fidel's is hyperbole at its best. As someone with Cuban heritage I actually find it sort of offensive.

    A little off topic, but why do so many here seem to give backhanded support to the ol' Batista regime? (Like, oh, Batista might have been in cahoots with the Mafia, but that's okay. Or, oh, I had a relative who served in the glorious Batista army, but that's okay. Do the men here have a homoerotic 'thing' for Batista? Do some of you find him sexy or something?)

    To my way of seeing it, a dictator is a dictator. Who is worse, Hitler or Stalin? I see no point in discussing such questions. Batista and his supporters were scum, so is Fidel and his band.

    Comparing Obama to Fidel, or saying that the former dictator of Cuba wasn't really so bad, just diminishes the message and enables the MSM and many libs and moderate repubs to disregard the anti-Fidel commentary as just so much hyperbole.

    - Sandi

  • pototo

    dccuban,
    On the contrary I think the writer of the letter has a very valid argument. One can and should equate Obama with Castro as socialism no matter what the path taken is the same destination for both.
    As for the inaction? The key is that many who are here "fled" rather than fought. This time we should have learned our lesson and should be prepared to fight rather than flee.

    "Those who refuse to remember the past are condemned to relive it" - George Santayana

    As for the off topic regarding Batista.... yes its very off topic and you seem to be more offended with Batista than Obama. Perhaps you should refocus on who can do you the greater harm today.

  • trying to equate Obama's policies with Fidel's is hyperbole at its best.

    really? A snitch hotline isnt comparable to fidel's cdrs? How about single payer healthcare? Thats not comparable to fidels? How about nationalizing industry? Thats not comparable to fidel? Demonizing legitimate opposition? not comparable to fidel? Obama's unbridled arrogance and condescension? not comparable to fidels? How about destroying the economy? thats not comparable to fidel. (on second thought, maybe not on this last one. It took fidel a least a few years to destroy cuba's economy Obama has trumped him in seven months.)

    I asked you before if you work for or are affiliated with the Obama administration in someway. You never responded.

    Also, I take umbrage and am insulted by your batista remarks. No one here has any affinity for the man. No one has said that his being in cohoots with the mafia was ok. No one here has said anything even remotely close to being in support of the man.Stop projecting and stop making asinine insinuations.

    Yet the fact of the matter, EMPIRICALLY, is that fidel castro doesnt get demonized as much as batista, despite the fact that fidel castro has been responsible for more deaths, exponentially, than Batista. It seems you have missed the point ENTIRELY.

  • FreedomForCuba

    dccuban,

    Potato and Val gave you a good reply, I’ll add mine’s.

    Fulgencio Batista was corrupted, killed opponents, trumped democracy in Cuba and facilitated the arrival of Fidel Castro to power.

    And yet Cuba greatly prospered economically under his administrations and he respected private property unlike Fidel Castro.

    As Val said, as bas as Batista was, he was a small fraction of the evil that Fidel Castro is, yet the MSM has painted Batista in much darker terms than Fidel Castro for the last fifty years.

    Regarding Obama I already told you my feelings about him in another post.

    But I would repeat some and add more,

    Obama is a Marxist, Anti-American bullshit artist, sorry as excuse for a Commander in-Chief that does not love and respect his country otherwise he would not be going around the world blaming America and apologizing for America.

    Obama wants to destroy the very fiber of what this country was founded upon and he has doing his best for the last seven months to achieve this goal.

    He won’t admit to this truth that is so obvious to me, yet many Americans (even some that voted for him) are finally beginning to wake-up to that fact.

    Obama goes around the world embracing every single enemy of freedom and democracy, that fact alone speaks values about what he’s made off. His choice of friends and associates leaves a lot to be desired too.

    The fact that he’s engaging in this type of foreign policy is putting American, the State of Israel and the Western world in great peril for years to come as I strongly believe that Obama’s policies of appeasing and embracing our enemies and weakening America’s military and foreign policy will lead to a military confrontation of great magnitude in the future.

    The fact that he’s weakening America’s economy with socialist ideas that have always proved unworkable throughout history scares me greatly because it will weaken America economy to the point that it won’t be able to fund and maintain the military power necessary to guarantee our security around the world.

  • dccuban

    "I asked you before if you work for or are affiliated with the Obama administration in someway. You never responded."

    Actually, I _DID_ respond, please go back and look. You must have missed it. I'll say it again, I am not in the administration.

    I think it is crazy people here are defending Batista while slamming Obama. I'm no fan of Obama's, but seeing people defending Batista's regime even in a little bit ("Cuba greatly prospered economically under his administrations and he respected private property unlike Fidel Castro") is crazy to me.

  • Cuba greatly prospered economically under his administrations and he respected private property unlike Fidel Castro.

    That's not a defense of Batista, it is, quite simply, the verifiable, historical truth.

  • Larry Daley

    Interesting even a comparison of Batista to Castro is verbotten to some folk. I fought them both and I can tell you this much:

    Batista was bad

    but he was a babe in arms

    compared to Castro

  • Honey

    I believe it is of no value to argue with dccuba. But that's just me.
    Anyone reading this post for even one day knows that all of dc's assertions are baloney in regards to babalu. Hitler and Stalin were both bad. But saying that the Czar or Batista were not as bad as communism or Castro does not mean I admire the Czar or Batista. It just says, they were each less bad than their successors.
    dc may not work for the Obama administration, but he either works for Castro or has to be affiliated with or a fan of some other nefarious interest group which is not happy with this country or anti communism.

    Freedom I loved your reply, pototo's and Val's, but can you share any evidence of personal experience that the worm is turning where Obama is concerned? I see no evidence yet on a personal basis that Obama is any less loved than he was before.

  • asombra

    Who the hell is "defending Batista" and how, exactly? Don't make vague allegations unless you can cite specific comments that can be examined and evaluated. Anything else is dangerously close to libel/slander, and the "anti-Castro Cubans are just batistianos" bullshit is a VERY old and absolutely classic ploy of Castro, Inc. and its apologists. Anyone who plays that card is automatically suspect until proven otherwise. So what did you think of Oliphant's infamous cartoon in the WaPo, huh?

    Just so it's clear, saying Batista was not as bad as Castro is NOT being pro-Batista or defending what he did, since he made Castro possible, and that makes him the second worst Cuban in history. If you look at Cuba in 1958, relative to those times, and Cuba now, relative to ours, it's beyond obvious that what Castro has caused is infinitely worse. There's no comparison. Batista was a run-of-the-mill corrupt dictator along typical "Latin" lines. Castro is a different animal, a totalitarian (not just authoritarian) monstrosity with absolute power over everyone and everything, the likes of which Cuba had never seen.

    But I expect I waste my time. I can smell bad faith a mile away, and the place sure stinks right about now. And that "homoerotic" crack, WTF? If that's supposed to be clever or funny, somebody's sadly deluded. If you want homoerotic, talk to Chavez about how he feels about Fidel. Sheesh.

  • dccuban

    "Interesting even a comparison of Batista to Castro is verbotten to some folk."

    It's not verboten ... just bad strategy. As I said before:

    "Comparing Obama to Fidel, or saying that the former dictator of Cuba wasn't really so bad, just diminishes the message and enables the MSM and many libs and moderate repubs to disregard the anti-Fidel commentary as just so much hyperbole."

    I'd rather we focus on reality, not hyperbole.

    - Sandi

  • Honey,

    dc's argument are classic strawmen. He builds them up by quoting out of context, putt9ing words in someone else's mouth or denigrating other's opinions and then tears them down.

    Reminds me very very much of that Manny Hidalgo guy that we banned here last week.

  • dccuban

    Val, I thought this blog was about helping Cuba.

    I see it is really just about folks like yourself repeating lies and hyperbole about Obama. And attacking people you disagree with. Like accusing me of not responding to your post, when I did ... would it have killed you to check your facts before you act like an idiot and falsely accuse me?

    Building strawmen? Geez, take a look at your first comment in this thread. You set up about 8 strawmen right there.

    Goodbye. You don't even need to ban me. I have better things to do than read this blog.

    - Sandi

  • I can smell bad faith a mile away, and the place sure stinks right about now.

    Amen, brother.

  • asombra

    I'd rather we focus on verifiable facts, not pernicious allegations. If anyone accuses anyone here of being pro-Batista, I want specific proof that I can read and judge for myself. Anything less is a smear campaign. Where is the proof? What did you think of Oliphant's cartoon? Did you vote for Obama?

  • Repeating lies?

    Really dc? What lies have I repeated?

    As for my "hyperbole" on Obama's shortcomings - I believe they already speak for themselves, as we have ample proof and continue to get same on a daily basis - but, notwithstaning that, this IS still America, right? I mean, I AM still entitled to my opinions, no?

    As for your not reading the blog any more. Hey, whatever curdles your cream. It's a free country - for now.

    But let me give you a little advice: Look at your very first comment on this thread. Specifically this:

    Do the men here have a homoerotic 'thing' for Batista? Do some of you find him sexy or something?

    Not only does this reek of hubris and condescension but it is incredibly snide and insulting.

    Im simply treating you EXACTLY the way you have treated us. if you dont like it then show a little more respect next time.

  • And if not, STFU and get the fuck out.

  • caballerodeparis1

    Sadly, I think DC missed the larger point made by other posters here as recently as last week. That is, Batista is merely symbolic of the inherent character failings of the Cuban people. The ones that led, as Asombra and other pointed out, to the chants of "Paredon! Paredon!" after 1/1/59 to the willingness of the Cuban masses to embrace the CDR concept, etc. Batista and Fidel are merely cut from the same intrinsically soiled national cloth. One has lastedm in power longer than the other, and cost more lives, but at the end the day, as Cubans, they were destined to destroy the island.

  • Henry Agueros

    dccuban...
    You think maybe we will be seeing the obamas backside again as he bends down to kiss the castros finger?
    I mean..his BCC was down there a couple of months ago doing it.

  • firefly

    Staying on the topic…

    Baffled,

    The reason you haven’t seen any big demonstrations by Cuban-Americans all over the U.S.A. is because we respect the fact that Obama was elected president by the majority of the American people. That doesn’t mean, however, that we are not doing everything we can to bring to light his Marxist ideology.

    There are six Cuban-Americans in Congress. Four representatives: Ileana Ros-Lehtinen, Lincoln Diaz-Balart, Mario Diaz Balart, and Albio Sires. Two Senators: Mel Martinez and Bob Menendez.

    Marco Rubio is running for the senate seat being vacated by Mel Martinez (thank God for he is a RINO) against RINO Charlie Crist. Rubio has been very outspoken about the left and their policies. He is a true Conservative.

    As individuals, Cuban-Americans have tried, are trying and will continue to try to educate anyone who wants to listen. Being from Cincinnati you’re probably not aware that Cuban-American is the only minority group that is politically correct to demonize, insult and overall defame. We are the only group the MSM and the Democrats love to hate. We’ve had an uphill battle these past fifty years trying to enlighten the American public to no avail. We are always being portrayed as the evil ones in the battle between castro’s Cuba and those in exile. I’m afraid that should we try to demonstrate “en masse,” as you suggest, against the “Messiah,” we would be ignored or taken as a “group of crazy extreme right wingers who hate blacks.”

    Sadly, not too long ago, we tried to dissuade all our Venezuelan friends from voting for hugo chavez (as we did before the elections in Nicaragua). We saw in chavez everything that we had seen on fidel. Numerous Cuban-American journalists, radio personalities, and elected public officials spoke and wrote ad nauseum about how dangerous chavez was. Many traveled to Venezuela to convey their message. We were told that “whatever happened in Cuba would never happen in Venezuela” and that “you Cubans see Communists everywhere” and laughed in our faces. We now see the results.

    During this past presidential election, we tried hard to convince people of how dangerous an Obama administration would be for the United States and the world. We foretold that what happened in Cuba could very well happen in the U.S. I can’t even begin to tell you how many people laughed in my face and said “that would never happen in the United States.” I’ve learned the hard way that unfortunately most people only learn from their own experience.

    Thank you very much for caring. We need many more like you in our corner.

  • Mr. Mojito

    Oh great guys, now dccuban is going to report the site to his neighborhood CDR and I'll have my chicken ration cut in half again ... thanks alot

    (sarcasm)

  • Mr. Mojito

    To dccuban, everyone here agrees pretty much that Batista was bad - but we all agree that FIDEL WAS WORSE.

    Enjoy Veradero on your next visit :) and make sure to wrap up when you buy your hooker on the malecon.

  • FreedomForCuba

    Honey,

    1. I have some friends that voted for Obama that are having second thoughts.

    2. Obama's drop in the polls (even the MSM polls).

    3. The statements made in the media by those people (that voted for Obama back in November) revolting against Obama's policies at those town halls meetings.

    I think that the tide against Obama is beginning to turn. Maybe you're not witnessing this issue in your neck of the woods but eventually it will increase, as this is just the beginning.

    Great statement Larry, coming from someone who fought both Batista and Castro.

    Asombra and Val you both made very valid and strong points.

    Cab, you made a painful but truthful point that both Batista and Castro are responsible for the condition that Cuba is today.

    This is my take:

    1. Fulgencio Batista for facilitating Castro's arrival to power.

    2. Fidel Castro for totally destroying the island of Cuba's freedoms and human rights, the economy, the people and it's way of life.

    But them, I believe that many other Cubans are responsible for the sad shape that the island is in today as both Batista and Fidel could not do the job by themselves without having accomplices along the way.

  • FreedomForCuba

    AMEN firefly!

  • FreedomForCuba

    Oh great guys, now dccuban is going to report the site to his neighborhood CDR and I'll have my chicken ration cut in half again ... thanks alot

    LOL...

    Thanks for the comedy Mr. Mojito.

    Thanks God is Friday!

  • Dccuban , lies about Obama? Are you serious? Everything Babalu has said about him is 100% pure fact and truth. You obviously cant see that. As far as i am concerned , if you engage WITH the enemy , then you ARE the enemy. Osama bin Laden and the taliban , Chavez , and Castro are not our biggest enemies. The biggest enemy to our freedom in this country is sitting in the highest office we have , The President of The United States. He is destroying our country and you are blind to that fact.

    You should hang out with Manny Hidalgo and help him with his anti - american , pro- obama , anti-freedom website. I'm sure he would love your help and would enjoy your company very much. In my opion , there are two sides you can choose from. The side of freedom , and the side of communism. Judging by your comments on here , we already know what side you are.

  • FreedomForCuba

    Colena!!!

    There you go girl...LOL

    Honey,

    I believe that I read from one of her original posts that Colena is a conservative Democrat that voted for Obama last November (please correct me if I'm wrong, Colena) that finally opened her eyes.

    You see, there is still hope for America that the good people will eventually come to their senses and revolt against the "Chosen One".

  • Freedom , i agree with you that the tide is turning against Obama. But i think its going to take the majority of the country to wake up and speak out. Lets hope they do. I dont think Obama cares, but the Senators and Represenatives do. Alot of them are up for re-election soon and they know people are pissed. They dont want to loose their offices , if they know what's good for them , they will side with the people , not Obama.

  • Freedom , i WAS a conservative Democrat when i voted for him in November. I recently changed my affiliation (all my friends asked me why i was even a Democrat to begin with , given the fact that i side with Republicans on almost every issue) and i am disgusted that i voted for this prick. But the friends i have who are democrats , are keeping their mouths shut and still refuse to even speak about Obama.

  • FreedomForCuba

    "A lot of them are up for re-election soon and they know people are pissed. They dont want to loose their offices, if they know what's good for them , they will side with the people , not Obama."

    I fully agree Colena,

    I think that what you stated above will be Obama's undoing.

    Our current President needs to be put by Congress (and most of all by the people) into a straight jacket of checks and balances to stop America's descend into the abyss created by his policies.

  • FreedomForCuba

    "But the friends i have who are democrats , are keeping their mouths shut and still refuse to even speak about Obama."

    Don't you worry a bit Colena,

    If you Democratic friends are decent, honest, hard working people that love God, America, freedom and democracy above all, they will realize sooner or later how much of a mistake they made by voting for Obama last November and will reserve that mistake next time they go to vote.

  • Freedom , correct me if im wrong , but if the Repulicans gain the House and Senate back , that means that Obama cant get anything signed into power then right? Because he will need their approval.

  • Freedom , they very much are . Hopefully they will break party lines next time and vote against him.

  • FreedomForCuba

    Colena,

    If the right Republicans (means no RINOs) reach majority again in Congress they'll effectively stop Obama's agenda and will be able to reverse some of his decisions (that is if they have enough majority to override a Presidential veto).

  • ok , i understand. Thanks. The RINO's are also going to be in trouble in the next election if they keep it up.

  • marc in calgary

    "dccuban" was offended by the posting? oh.. well.. we'll all STFU then!
    I wouldn't want anyone reporting me to the new snitch line or opening a file on me under the heading of "Mr. Trouble"... ah, speaking of snitch lines, it's difficult to say that phrase without remembering the problems there were in the old Soviet Bloc. A book review of a slightly shattered man may be helpful, best read before B.Hussien Obama has this sort of thing swept down the ol' memory hole. All of socialismo leads down the same path. It isn't just that your chicken ration is cut in half, it is also that you are forbidden to complain, forbidden to talk about it, forbidden to raise your own chickens, forbidden to bla bla bla... and the only "growth industry" is the government. uff.
    http://www.nytimes.com/books/97/10/12/reviews/971012.12venclot.html

  • FreedomForCuba

    "wouldn't want anyone reporting me to the new snitch line or opening a file on me under the heading of "Mr. Trouble"... "

    marc,

    This current administration can kiss my Cuban-American ass if they don't like my views about the President, tough shit.

  • Freedom , im with you lol!!! They can report me all they want i really dont give a shit. we are all protected by the 1st amendment. At least for now , that is.

  • FreedomForCuba

    "we are all protected by the 1st amendment"

    And the Second Amendment too.

  • Honey

    marc,
    I want to comment on what you said here at 2:21 P.M.

    I was just listening to a tape of Bernard Lewis, the eminent scholar on Islam. He told a story about an Arab boy who got his arm broken by an Israeli policeman during some fighting with the Israelis. They took him to an Israeli hospital where they gave him treatment and he got his arm in a cast. He went on Israeli television live after this to continue railing against the the Israelis.
    A young Iraqi exile (this was while Saddam was still in power in Iraq) upon witnessing this said,"I'd have gladly allowed Saddam to break both of my arms and legs if he would have allowed me after that to go on Iraqi television and speak out against him."

    This is what the value of freedom to think and say what you want means. Obama and his cronies call the protesters against his ideas Nazis, thugs, or a mob hired by special interests. The one thing he dare never call us is private citizens freely expressing private opinions. Then what can they do? If Rush decides to take off on their name calling and does a riff on how Obama's health care emblem looks like a Nazi one, oh my, do they get righteously angry. How dare Rush say such awful things. The msm dutifully reports what Rush says, repeatedly, but they never repeat with disapproval what prompted Rush to make his comment.

    Double standards. Selective indignation. And soon the end of free speech here?

    Freedom, I liked "And the Second Amendment too."

  • Honey

    Freedom,
    I hope you are correct that more are coming over to the right side. I need to hear more because where I am I see absolutely no evidence of sanity erupting.

  • FreedomForCuba

    Honey,

    No disrespect, but I think that you live in the wrong neck of the woods (if you know what I mean…lol).

  • marc in calgary

    er... FreedomForCuba, Honey, y colena, I'll try to include the sarc\ note at the end of my commentaries in the future.

    my commentary was directed at the growth of "snitch lines" and how that may be the one industry B. Hussien is well suited for.

    as for STFU... I can't see it happening. as I noted, it's one thing for them to cut your chicken ration in half, quite another for the government to prevent you from saying anything about it.

  • brotio

    I don't remember how I stumbled across Babalu, but it was linked to another conservative/libertarian blog (maybe DuToit). I'm also not Cuban, but at fifteen years old, I realized I identified with conservative/libertarian more than liberalism when I heard Reagan speak at the 1976 Convention.

    The beauty of the blogosphere is that I've discovered America's Cuban community (not easy to find in Colorado), and learned that Cubans are typically as conservative, individualist, and patriotic as I am. What a wonderful discovery! The dominant liberal media seldom discusses Americans of Cuban ancestry, and when they do, it's only to point out that Castro isn't the most popular guy in Miami.

    All of that rambling, is basically a thankyou to the hosts of this website for educating me about Cuban heritage, and showing the diversity of conservatism that the libtard press will never document.

    As for the jackass who said pointing out that Batista wasn't as bad as Castro is the same as defending Batista:

    We will be debating for generations who was the worst president in history; Jimmy Carter or Barack Obama. None of us will be saying that the better of the two was good.

    If you can't defend your pro-socialism any better than what you've spewed on this thread, then by all means, go back to Kos.

  • Honey

    brotio,
    You are describing me. Ditto, inc. to all you said.