Washington v. Cuba After Castro

… Cuban and American Elections:

Linked with The Long Ordeal Of Sami Al-Arian, with The harm at home and abroad, with US Presidents critical thoughts about money barons, with America’s War on Terrorism reviewed, and with John Pilger: Freedom next time.

Published on countercurrents.org, by Stephen Lendman, Febr. 25, 2008.

A short excerpt of a long text:

… Cuban and US elections have marked similarities and differences. Cuba is a one party state. So is America the way Gore Vidal describes it: the Property or Monied Party with two wings. There’s not a dimes worth of difference between them that matters so Americans have no choice. That’s not how things are in Cuba, and here’s the difference.

Cubans overwhelmingly support their government. They remember or learned what went on before Castro and won’t tolerate going back to how people once were treated so the rich could profit. Under Fulgencio Bastista, conditions were nightmarish as a de facto US colony – a combination police state and casino/brothel linked to US crime syndicates. There was systemic corruption, indifference to social needs, disdain for the common good, brutal exploitation, subservience to corporate interests, and a regime keeping power through brute force. When Cubans vote, they remember, and how it works would puzzle Americans. On the local/municipal level:

  • it’s through municipal electoral commissions;
  • only ordinary citizen loyalists may nominate candidates;
  • the Communist Party has no role in the process;
  • the commissions select nominees for municipal elections and for half the provincial legislative seats;
  • a secret ballot process then elects 12,000 municipal representatives and half the members of provincial legislatures; Cuba has 169 municipalities and about 15,000 electoral constituencies within them;
  • The system works because participation is high, and ordinary Cubans alone choose their candidates – not politicians, corporations, the privileged or other monied or influential interests.

The rest of the process works this way to elect members of the National Assembly and remaining provincial seats: … (full long text).

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