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Old 07-06-2019, 09:59   #31
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Re: Trump Bans Sailing to Cuba

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If the Cubans back the current regime, there is no problem!!??
Not what i said; I simply pointed out that back in 1959, things under a US backed dictator were so rotten that the people supported a Communist revolution. You reap what you sow.
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It’s simply an illusion that money made from international trade makes to the Cuban citizen.
Obviously not true. It's not soldiers that cook and serve meals, drive taxis, make beds, build hotels, install air conditioners etc etc etc.

Also, Cuba has been experimenting with allowing small independent businesses to be established, especially in the tourism industry. But of course the tourism industry needs tourists. When Trump retightened the screws, the Cuban government did likewise.

It's beyond obvious that engaging in trade with China has led to the flourishing of Chinese businesses and has drastically improved the standard of living of the Chinese. An embargo helps the development of Cuban free enterprise how?

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Simply not true. They could stop backing the current government in Venezuela.
I call BS, but please prove me wrong. What exactly would the US do if the Cuban government stopped supporting Maduro?
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Old 07-06-2019, 11:27   #32
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Re: Trump Bans Sailing to Cuba

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Not what i said; I simply pointed out that back in 1959, things under a US backed dictator were so rotten that the people supported a Communist revolution. You reap what you sow.
Of course the people did. Understandable in 1959, but you may want to ask those same people who were later executed, imprisoned, and repressed how they felt about it after 1959. Many of these people were the same ones who suffered the same fates for speaking out against the similarly corrupt and repressive Batista regime.

This is only a left/right, communist/fascist, US/anti-US issue for those who are seduced by simple, ideological explanations for age-old, chronic human dysfunction when it comes to governance. In this case, based on a century of failed political & economic systems which promised levels of economic "equality" which can never be obtained and never will. Pre and post-Castro Cuba is instead the same age-old story of personal power, corruption, and the repression of ordinary citizens who dare to oppose it. Choose whichever label you like, but the real problem derives from the nature of humankind, and we should all be able to agree that the best remedy we've come up with thus far is free speech, a free press, and a govt which is therefore more accountable to its citizens. Yes, one can easily make the case that US policy in Cuba & other parts of Latin America contributed to the repression, but let's also be sure to remember the basic, more fundamental reasons why some countries fail while others don't. After all, repressive, violent thugs who use force rather than compromise & consensus to implement unpopular, destructive policies come in all too many stripes.

The effectiveness of continuing the embargo, however, is a different matter, and it's hard to say what the best policy for the US might be at this point. I don't think there's any denying that when you compare the embargo's stated goals from its inception (thanks Gord) with its results, there's much to be said that's not in its favor. Then again, reasonable minds can differ on what alternatives should be pursued now. There are, of course, foreign policy "experts" on both sides on this one.

Meanwhile, none of this has anything to do with the current realities for US cruisers seeking to sail to Cuba. My apologies to Ann.
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Old 07-06-2019, 12:04   #33
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Re: Trump Bans Sailing to Cuba

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Originally Posted by letsgetsailing3
Simply not true. They could stop backing the current government in Venezuela.

Lake Effect Response:

I call BS, but please prove me wrong. What exactly would the US do if the Cuban government stopped supporting Maduro?



Not sure I'm following your argument. So are you admitting the Cuban government is supporting Maduro, but you're still questioning the U.S. response?

The U.S. stance here is in line with U.S. foreign policy going back to the Monroe Doctrine, so the surprise would be if the U.S. had taken no response.

The problems in Venezuela are serious, and more significant than boaters making a holiday and picking up some cigars in Cuba.

I was all for opening up relations in Cuba, but Venezuela is a human tragedy right now. The bigger mistake would be for the U.S. to cast a blind eye to it right now.
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Old 07-06-2019, 12:20   #34
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Re: Trump Bans Sailing to Cuba

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...Not sure I'm following your argument. So are you admitting the Cuban government is supporting Maduro, but you're still questioning the U.S. response?
I believe the point is that the Venezuela factor is simply a ruse. The real reason the policy is being reversed on Cuba is for crass political gain.

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...I was all for opening up relations in Cuba, but Venezuela is a human tragedy right now. The bigger mistake would be for the U.S. to cast a blind eye to it right now.
The US (and indeed all Western powers) live with blinders firmly in place in much of our international dealings. If the US were indeed concerned about human rights violations, then Saudi Arabia should be top of the list for action. The Venezuela situation is yet another example of a bad situation being made vastly worse by the US’s interventions.

… but all this is beside the point of a cruising forum. It is unfortunate American cruisers and tourists are once more being made pawns in this political game. But as in the past, Americans who want to visit will find work arounds.
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Old 07-06-2019, 13:10   #35
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Re: Trump Bans Sailing to Cuba

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I believe the point is that the Venezuela factor is simply a ruse. The real reason the policy is being reversed on Cuba is for crass political gain.

The US (and indeed all Western powers) live with blinders firmly in place in much of our international dealings. If the US were indeed concerned about human rights violations, then Saudi Arabia should be top of the list for action. The Venezuela situation is yet another example of a bad situation being made vastly worse by the US’s interventions.

… but all this is beside the point of a cruising forum. It is unfortunate American cruisers and tourists are once more being made pawns in this political game. But as in the past, Americans who want to visit will find work arounds.

While the situations in Saudi Arabia and Venezuela are both unfortunate, they're quite different, and have different implications. Political freedoms are limited in Saudi Arabia. People are starving to death in Venezuela. Since even a cursory knowledge of the situations would tell you that, why would you attempt such a comparison?

The interest on this forum is cruising, but the U.S. interest in any of these situations is a bit bigger in either case. To assess motives without a comprehensive understanding of what is actually happening is sort of silly, in addition to being a blatant violation of forum rules.

The pawns here aren't American cruisers, they're the citizens of countries with authoritarian rulers. As citizens of democracies, we of all people should at least understand and appreciate that.
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Old 07-06-2019, 13:27   #36
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Re: Trump Bans Sailing to Cuba

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Disagree. I won't deny the poverty in Cuba, but allowing for the different political systems, I would put the lot of the average Cuban roughly on a par with the DR. Except that the DR isn't embargoed. Haiti is a basket-case; I would bet that the bottom-rung Haitian would happily change places with a bottom-rung Cuban.

Cuba is poor mainly because they've been denied normal opportunities to trade regionally for 70 years. It's cruel and ridiculous to pretend that the embargo has done anything other than impoverish 3 generations of average Cubans. It's exquisitely, mind-blowingly hypocritical to maintain the Cuban embargo while enriching China and other authoritarian countries with trade.

We know who's really exploiting the Cuban people.

A US invasion would fix Cuba. An invasion of trade, tourists, scientists, cruisers, sports teams, investment. a MLB franchise in Havana.

Seriously, though... does anyone think that banning sailing to Cuba is likely to have any effect on anything other than the plans of maybe a thousand cruisers?
That is an overly simplistic view which I don’t have time to correct except to say Cuba can and does have healthy trade relations with a hundred plus countries in this world. Blaming their problems on just one doesn’t begin to explain the problems with their government which we shouldn’t be financially supporting, even with our meager cruising community dollars.
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Old 07-06-2019, 13:52   #37
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Re: Trump Bans Sailing to Cuba

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That is an overly simplistic view which I don’t have time to correct except to say Cuba can and does have healthy trade relations with a hundred plus countries in this world. Blaming their problems on just one doesn’t begin to explain the problems with their government which we shouldn’t be financially supporting, even with our meager cruising community dollars.
Exactly. The idea that one country (the USA) refusing to trade with Cuba is responsible for their train wreck of an economy is a bizarre notion. Cuba’s economy is a train wreck because they are a communist country and for no other reason.

I guess the biggest problem for Cuba is that everyone with the stones to do something about it, has already escaped to south Florida.
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Old 07-06-2019, 14:00   #38
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Re: Trump Bans Sailing to Cuba

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Originally Posted by letsgetsailing3
Simply not true. They could stop backing the current government in Venezuela.

Lake Effect Response:

I call BS, but please prove me wrong. What exactly would the US do if the Cuban government stopped supporting Maduro?

Not sure I'm following your argument. So are you admitting the Cuban government is supporting Maduro, but you're still questioning the U.S. response?
...

I was all for opening up relations in Cuba, but Venezuela is a human tragedy right now. The bigger mistake would be for the U.S. to cast a blind eye to it right now.
My argument is: if the US are strengthening sanctions against Cuba because of their aid to Maduro, then what would the US do if that stopped? (answer: nothing) Cuba only gets stick.

There's no dispute that the Cubans are backing Maduro, but their assistance is hardly the deciding factor. Cuba backing out won't suddenly cause him to topple. Maybe the CIA should simply dump more operatives in to help Guaidó.

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Originally Posted by S/V Illusion
Blaming [Cuba's] problems on just one doesn’t begin to explain the problems with their government which we shouldn’t be financially supporting, even with our meager cruising community dollars.
Exactly. The idea that one country (the USA) refusing to trade with Cuba is responsible for their train wreck of an economy is a bizarre notion. Cuba’s economy is a train wreck because they are a communist country and for no other reason.
I'm not saying that the US embargo is their only problem, but it certainly is a big one, and is clear evidence that the plight of the Cuban people has not been important to the US. And is of course breathtakingly hypocritical when one considers the US's friendly relations or engagement with worse and more threatening regimes.

Pretending that Cuba's only problem is communism is a fairy tale. Again: China?
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Old 07-06-2019, 14:17   #39
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Re: Trump Bans Sailing to Cuba

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While the situations in Saudi Arabia and Venezuela are both unfortunate, they're quite different, and have different implications. Political freedoms are limited in Saudi Arabia. People are starving to death in Venezuela. Since even a cursory knowledge of the situations would tell you that, why would you attempt such a comparison?
I've got nice big diesel tanks on my boat (actually rebuilding them). They carry diesel fuel. Diesel fuel is cheap for me to purchase in large part because my government supports a regime that is otherwise nearly exclusively responsible for the starvation of many tens of thousands of children, not to mention fairly indiscriminate bombing of civilians, etc, etc.

I assume that the comparison referenced was based on more than a simple cursory knowledge.
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Old 07-06-2019, 14:40   #40
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Re: Trump Bans Sailing to Cuba

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Pretending that Cuba's only problem is communism is a fairy tale. Again: China?
China’s economic success is due to their abandoning failed communist economic policies and embracing capitalist principles at least a couple of decades ago now. Surely you know that, and therefore understand why holding China up as a communist success is specious. There are no communist success stories, and the only “equality” it’s achieved is the equal sharing of misery. I can’t believe there are intelligent people still apologizing for such autocratic regimes, whatever political persuasion they claim to be.
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Old 07-06-2019, 14:46   #41
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Re: Trump Bans Sailing to Cuba

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People are starving to death in Venezuela.
A small sidebar on WHY people are currently starving to death in Venezuela:

Venezuela's exodus passes 4 million as U.S. sanctions strangle economy

Quote:
The number of Venezuelans who have fled the country's political and economic chaos has now topped 4 million — more than 12 per cent of the population.

The exodus has picked up steam in recent months as U.S. sanctions strangle the economy, with one million people leaving since November, according to new figures released by the UN and the International Organization for Migration this morning.
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Old 07-06-2019, 14:49   #42
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Re: Trump Bans Sailing to Cuba

Sorry, guys, but it seems it's not possible to discuss the subject without diverging into political discussion. The thread is now closed.
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