An Ingenous Question / Fernando Dámaso

Among the authorities and officials serving in the national mass media, the verb “to recover” is the most used in these times of guidelines and updating the economic model. It is practically applied to all areas and activities of the nation, whether of a material or spiritual nature: everything should be “recovered.”

First things first: when something has to be recovered, it means that at some point it existed and then at another point, for some reason, it disappeared. Something that never existed can’t be recovered. So, when one speaks of recovering the sugar production, the coffee crop, grains, rice, minerals, and so on, or mining, the railroad, the fishing fleet, the merchant marine, et cetera, it is assumed that it existed and disappeared. This corresponds to material matters.

The same happens with the spiritual. When considering the recovery of social and labor discipline, good manners, formal education, morality, civility, correct language, etc., is also accepted that it existed and disappeared.

If we simplify the problem, which is quite complex, we can conclude that all these issues, as in any other country, were established and consolidated over time, from colonial times through the Republic and into the early years of the sixties until we come to socialism, when there was a massive collapse. Today, if we listen to the authorities, everything has to be recovered. It is a true work of giants, that pretty much everything created in the colonial era and in 56 years of the Republic does not exist.

It remains a mystery: no one speaks of the causes of this disaster. One could think that it was due to cyclones, but there have always been cyclones, drought, but there have always been droughts, heavy rains, but there have always been heavy rains. Perhaps the blockade (in reality, the embargo) is responsible, but for more than thirty years, the former USSR and the rest of the extinct socialist countries subsidized us with billions in financial aid, in addition to technologies, specialists and goods. Afterward the support was taken on by the Bolivarian Venezuela up until today. It is possible that we Cubans are an incapable people, but during the colonial period and the Republic we proved capable, becoming an example for Latin America and other countries. In short: there don’t seem to be any causes. Could it be that the model doesn’t work? Draw your own conclusions.

July 4 2011