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Raul: Communist Cuba Will Not Change

From a relieved Reuters:

Castro to U.S.: communist Cuba will not change

By Jeff Franks Sat Aug 1

HAVANA (Reuters) – President Raul Castro said on Saturday he would not change Cuba’s communist system to make peace with the United States, but repeated his willingness to discuss all issues with the island’s longtime enemy.

In a speech to the Cuban National Assembly, Castro acknowledged the United States under President Barack Obama was less "aggressive" toward Cuba, but he expressed irritation with Secretary of State Hillary Clinton for saying repeatedly that Washington expected Havana to make changes in exchange for better relations.

"I have to say, with all due respect to Mrs. Clinton … they didn’t elect me president to restore capitalism in Cuba, nor to hand over the revolution," said Castro, who succeeded his brother Fidel Castro as president last year.

"I was elected to defend, maintain and continue perfecting socialism, not destroy it," he added, prompting a long standing ovation from assembly members, most of whom are members of the Communist Party.

"We are ready to talk about everything, but … not to negotiate our political and social system," he said

Castro also gave the assembly more bad economic news, saying the government had cut its budget for the second time this year to confront the country’s worst financial crisis since the 1990s.

He did not say how much had been cut, but said the Cuban economy, battered by the global financial crisis and three hurricanes last year, grew just 0.8 percent in the first half of 2009. He said growth of 1.7 percent was expected for the full year…

The plan for next year, he said, calls for Cuba to have a "balance of payments, without deficit" and to put priority on producing products and services that bring hard currency.

The official newspaper Granma quoted Economy and Planning Minister Marino Murillo Jorge on Saturday as saying there would be more decentralization of the economy.

Castro’s biggest reform since taking office has been the decentralization of decision-making in agriculture and putting more land in the hands of private farmers to increase food output.

He also has pushed for Cubans to be paid based on their production, with the aim of creating incentives for them to work harder.

Castro has also launched a fight against widespread corruption that he says is choking the Cuban economy. Before his speech, the National Assembly approved creation of the comptroller general’s office, with powers to audit and control all government and economic activities.

Even Mr. Obama must appreciate Mr. Castro’s perversion of language:

[T]hey didn’t elect me president to restore capitalism in Cuba, nor to hand over the revolution," said Castro, who succeeded his brother Fidel Castro as president last year.

No, they didn’t elect you at all, Mr. Castro. Raul Castro was “unanimously selected” to succeed his brother Fidel as leader by Cuba’s rubber stamping National Assembly.

But that aside, let’s review.

Mr. Castro has said that he is never going to abandon communism, or restore capitalism.

And yet he is cutting the Cuba’s budget – again. He wants to decentralize the economy. He wants Cuban workers to have more incentives. And he wants to try to stamp out corruption in the government itself.

And Cuba is not even in a recession.

If only we could be more like Cuba.

This article was posted by Steve on Sunday, August 2nd, 2009. Comments are currently closed.

3 Responses to “Raul: Communist Cuba Will Not Change”

  1. Liberals Demise says:

    Communist birds of a feather molt together!

  2. JohnMG says:

    …..”President Raul Castro said on Saturday he would not change Cuba’s communist system to make peace with the United States, but repeated his willingness to discuss all issues with the island’s longtime enemy……”

    The Mega-moron leads off with an oxy-moron.

    No wonder everybody wants Cuban cigars. There’s no telling what sort of mind-altering substances are in ’em if they make Raul think Cuba has ever been capitalistic in his adult lifetime.

    And just as an afterthought, has it ever occurred to the lib-tards why the entire world’s economies go into the tank every time ours does? Could it just be that they couldn’t exist as they do if we didn’t exist as we do? Nah. Certainly not!

  3. canary says:

    All a smoke screen to make the U.S. look anti-socialist. Hillary’s appointment was to aid Obama to strike while the irons hot, and learn from the best ASAP.


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