It Never Rains But It Pours / Regina Coyula

Information in Cuba is hopeless. To give you an idea, with regards to Syria they speak of armed mercenaries from Turkey, but they never say anything about the repression of the El-Assad government. It’s striking that the ETA has never been labeled as a terrorist organization, rather they refer to is the “Basque separatist organization.”

In my press, we Cubans never learn about the link between the Colombian guerrillas and narcotrafficking; instead they devote headlines to the 8% increase in the price of food in Chile! It’s like a friend says, the turkey calls the vulture bald, because here,someone who wasn’t an economist but who took on the subject, determined that goods sold in freely convertible currency were taxed at 240% — yes, that’s not a mistake.

This leader was ousted for trying to suck the honey of power, but the 240 remains, though occasionally we encounter surprises, for example when a liter of vegetable oil went from 1.90 to 2.40. This theme is a sandwich to which I invite you to add other unique approaches to the news in Cuba. I invite you, also, to reflect on how this peculiar approach determines the thinking of those who have no alternative information.

It never leads to protests; not even those journalists, so attentive to the evils of the world, hint at a complaint, or even a mild criticism; they don’t engage their investigative capacity and decide to ask to interview the responsible officials. I remember when someone threw a shoe at Bush, the scene was repeated in all the national and provincial news; but most of the country doesn’t know that a Cuban had his one second of freedom in front of the world during the Pope’s visit. And with these thunderclaps there are still those who believe that independent journalists are paid by the Empire. Information of the greatest interest to the citizenry often remains untouched. To improve the press is one of the issues of the Party Congress: they’ve never fulfilled their agreements.

I began by saying that information is hopeless. But it can be helped.

April 20 2012