Sunday, 23 January 2011

Response to reactionary Guardian attack on Cuban socialism

Dear Sir,

I am writing about your article "Cuba cuts 500,000 state workers" from 11 January 2011.

In regards to workers moving out of the state sector, its omitted that many will move into co-operatives, considered by many people - especially in Venezuela- as more conductive to workers democracy and therefore socialism. The article states 'people are worried' but does not offer a source of this claim.

Travel is Cuba is not 'controlled by the army'. The country has democratically elected officials who are responsible for travel policies. I do not clearly see what is implied by the suggestion it is controlled by foreign investors.

Results for 2010 show that the Cuban economic strategy has had significant success in its objectives. Imports are down and exports are up - thus reducing the fiscal deficit. Why is this not mentioned?

Healthcare is hardly handicapped by export of personnel. Cuba leads the world in patient per doctor ratio at 170, whilst in the UK its reckoned to be around 440. In Haiti it is 4,000. In fact Cuba has created a surplus of healthcare workers. 3500 of those have worked in Haiti over the last 12 years, saving 250,000 lives and performing 16 million consultations.

The problem is, the article generally contains little fact or assertion. It largely appears as a sensationalist reaction at Cuba's attempt to adapt to global economic crisis and pursue socialism.

Anthony Bairstow, London, UK.
13 January 2011.