Tales Along the Way / Fernando Damaso

Cubans spend a huge part of their lives standing in line to meet their everyday needs. (14ymedio)

Fernando Damaso, 16 September 2020 — It has become commonplace for the authorities, starting with the present and ending with the last of his minister, when speaking about why there is lack of products that are only exported, and about the high taxes and the high prices in state stores, to justify it saying that this is done to ensure free education and healthcare, and even to buy powdered milk for children.

I do not question that this is a part of the truth in it, but not the whole truth.

These resources are also used to maintain the voluminous and bureaucratic state apparatus, a useless Armed Forces, which for a long time now has been more dedicated to engaging in business and obtaining foreign exchange through the Grupo de Administración Empresarial SA (GAESA), than to the tasks of defense, knowing that no one is going to waste time invading a destroyed country.

And along with this goes a huge national repressive apparatus and the entire scaffoling of the Cuban Communist Party (PCC) and the Young Communist League (UJC), and all the subordinate organizations (CTC, CDR, FMC, ANAP, FEU, FEEM, UNEAC, UPEC, etc.), dedicated to the manipulation of information and political indoctrination.

I am sure that much more is spent on them than on public education and healthcare, although these are used as cover to hide the expenses.

Moreover, during the Republic, between 22-23% of the National Budget was dedicated to Education and Culture and the same for Public Health (Health and Social Assistance). In total, the annual allocation was between 44-46%. I doubt that today, despite the propaganda, these high percentages are maintained, although here it is difficult to verify it, because the statistical data, in addition to being manipulated, is kept as a”State Secret,” due to the paranoia that “the enemy is listening.”

Taking into account what has been said, it would be desirable for the authorities to respect us a little more and not consider us to be fools or imbeciles, when addressing us, thinking that they may confuse us with their worn-out tales along the way.

Six decades of failed socialism and misery have opened our eyes and our understanding!