14ymedio, Madrid, 12 October 2023 — It’s been a little over a month since Alexi Castro Soto del Valle, one of the children that Fidel Castro had with his last wife, Dalia Soto del Valle, opened an account on the social network X, where he maintains a remarkable level of activity dedicated to the active defense of his father’s principles. According to his own description, he is a “Cuban patriot, follower of the ideology of the founding heroes Félix Varela and José Martí and the July 26 ideology of the revolutionary leader Fidel Castro Ruz.” In his penultimate dispute, he made clear, however, his critical opinion of the current Government, which he asks to be accountable to the National Assembly, “which is the sovereign power of the people represented through its deputies,” for the failure of the Ministry of Agriculture’s policy.
“Nor is the role of state and private property management by the various cooperative forms in agriculture fully understood; each has its place and function,” says Castro’s son, who also attributes to companies and farmers the incompetence that has generated food insecurity on the Island.
Castro takes advantage of his posts to illustrate his knowledge of economics. “They don’t understand concepts such as the sense of ownership, the necessary autonomy to invest, associate, produce and market, and price formation, which should not be by mandate, but respond to an econometric science, the role of the market…”
The remark comes as a result of a comment by journalist Magdiel Jorge Castro, annoyed with the price of the eggs, whose shortage was the subject of a report even in Cubadebate on Monday. “So that you have an idea of the huge crisis in Cuba: a carton of eggs is sold today at 2,800 pesos, almost double the average [monthly] pension and much more than the minimum [monthly] wage, set at 2,100 pesos. A Cuban worker can’t even buy 30 eggs with a month’s work,” the reporter emphasizes.
Concepts such as the sense of ownership, the necessary autonomy to invest, associate, produce and market, price formation, which should not be by mandate, are not understood
Castro’s son rushes to reproach him for not using his “communication talents to lead a movement of all Cubans against the blockade as an effective way to favor the changes he wants so much.” In addition, he considers that the journalist, like many activists, does not maintain a constructive attitude toward solving the Island’s problems.
“Of course we all have the right to criticize or propose what we want. But no one has a moral right to promote the blockade against their homeland, offend or threaten those who think differently, call for disrespect or the laws and violence,” he adds.
Alexis Castro also points out that it is not an “informational first” to talk about the high price of eggs, since “Cubadebate was the one to first publish it. In case you didn’t know, Fidel taught us that the greatest critics have to be the revolutionaries themselves, so there’s no problem with that,” he says, ignoring, with or without knowledge, that the independent press has been denouncing the escalation of the prices of eggs and other products for years.
The most recent article on the subject in 14ymedio, without going any further back, is from October 2nd – when a carton of eggs was reported at 3,000 pesos – a week before the article in the official digital media. It even noted the inflation of the product in 2020, when the Ordering Task* had not yet given the coup de grâce to the runaway prices that came from its application.
Castro admits that things are not right in Cuba, but he believes that the solutions are only, as his father said, within the Revolution. “We know that we have a lot of deficiencies and that we have made another mountain of mistakes, but there is a big difference between staying in the homeland working to move it forward and criticizing from the outside with resentment, without making serious proposals,” he says.
A few hours later, a new dispute began, in this case from the cancellation of new contracts to send Cuban doctors to Kenya. “If I manufacture a product and you invest in finding a market for me, and for that management you have a part of the profit and we both earn, does that make me your slave?” he responds when they suggest that the doctors of the Island work as slaves.
Among the answers, a user reproaches him for comparing people to merchandise, but he insists that “there is nothing slavish in having the opportunity to provide services of high human value, acquire experiences, obtain income and contribute a part to the country that formed you and managed the opportunity. Doctors win and the country wins.”
*Translator’s note: The Ordering Task is a collection of measures that include eliminating the Cuban Convertible Peso (CUC), leaving the Cuban peso (CUP) as the only national currency, raising prices, raising salaries (but not as much as prices), opening stores that take payment only in hard currency, which must be in the form of specially issued pre-paid debit cards, and a broad range of other measures targeted to different elements of the Cuban economy.
Translated by Regina Anavy
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