Thursday, May 23, 2002

Letters in the Times

The letters section of The New York Times is almost always infuriating. Here the unadulterated lunacy of liberalism finds its home. Case in point, today there is a letter from Andrew Schrank, a Yale sociology professor complaining about the paper’s unflattering coverage of Cuba.

“According to the United Nations Economic Commission for Latin America, Cuba maintains the lowest level of infant mortality and the third lowest level of illiteracy in Latin America despite the overwhelming pressure of the United States embargo.”

Not quite sure how the embargo puts pressure on literacy rates. I would think the lack of televisions, Gameboys and Playstations would actually boost literacy, but never mind. Seems to me the pressure on Cuba comes from having an unaccountable military police state instead of a government. His point is thus:

“. . . the United States must begin acknowledging the Castro government’s undeniable achievements as well as its widely acknowledged shortcomings.”

Actually, after reading this letter I would have to question whether Castro’s shortcomings are indeed widely acknowledged. I would love to hear which of Castro’s shortcomings Mr. Schrank is willing to acknowledge. Would it be the lack of democracy? Or perhaps the incarceration of AIDS patients? Maybe it’s the brutality unleashed against political dissenters?

Assuming even that all of Castro’s "achievements" are undeniable, one question remains. Why did it require torture and violence to achieve them?

The fact, is the "shortcomings" of fascist dictatorship are so significant that they always outweigh any "achievements." Yet Castro is continually given the benefit of the doubt by people who wouldn't be caught dead balancing the achievements of say, Augusto Pinochet, against his shortcomings on the pages of the Times.

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