Cuba has More Democratic Potential than Germany

By Yusimi Rodriguez


HAVANA TIMES – When I thought about interviewing Tobias and Stefan, two young Germans from the former German Democratic Republic (East Germany) who were in Cuba on a visit, I expected that they would see Cuba as a mirror of what might have been their own future and express their joy at the fall of the Berlin Wall.

This event, after all, had brought them into one of the greatest economies in Europe, and made them part of a democratic society where they’re free to express their ideas, join any political party and even to oppose the government.

In fact, their vision of our two countries and of democracy turned out to be quite different than what I expected. Both are activists in the German Communist Youth and both say that we only hear about the negative side of the extinct German Democratic Republic.

Tobias has been a member of the German Communist Youth for five years. In 2013, that organization created a Solidarity Brigade with Cuba and at the end of 2014 he came here to spend seven months. His parents were born in the ex-GDR and still live in the same area, which is now part of a unified Germany.

Did your parents sympathize with the communist regime?

Tobias: Yes, but they weren’t members of the Party. When the Wall fell, they were happy, since they could finally see their family members who lived on the other side. Later, they lost their jobs. Before the fall, both had jobs and they had a house. As a child, I had to change schools several times because my parents would move to find work. My parents developed more sympathy for the GDR than what they had previously felt. They wanted the old system back, so they could have their lives back.

HT: Would you say that you joined the German Communist Youth as a result of your parents’ experiences?

Tobias: I grew up in the poorest part of Germany where one fourth of the people are unemployed. There are a lot of Nazis and racists there, and I would confront them. The environment also interested me so I joined the Green Party for a time: the left has always attracted me.

HT: But the Greens and leftist groups are one thing, and communism is another. After being a committed member of the left and the Green Party, why did you join the Communist Youth?

Tobias: I studied the different parties and organizations: those of the left and also the Greens. Even though they say that they’re in favor of the workers and all that, they don’t attack the essence of the system, which is where all of the problems stem from.

HT: What does the German Communist Party propose?

Tobias: Defeating Capitalism through a Revolution, like in Cuba. For that reason, the German Communist Party – the former KPD (Kommunistische Partei Deutschlands) – was outlawed in West Germany. Another Communist Party, the one of today (DPK), was founded. That party decided to put aside the armed struggle and violent means in order to protect it from being prohibited.

HT: How then could they destroy the system?

Tobias: First of all, you have to win over a majority of the people. We have to have large demonstrations in which a lot of people participate. Right now in Frankfurt, the heart of European capitalism, there are large demonstrations against the banks. The protesters aren’t only communists, but many share those ideas. Even though they’re not communist demonstrations – they’re demonstrating against the people’s poverty, the bank bailouts – the police react with a great deal of violence.

HT: So you think they could come to power and change the system through elections?

Tobias: I don’t believe that’s possible. There’s a lot of violence against the leftist demonstrators, in contrast to the demonstrations from the right; for example, the police protect the skinheads when they come out. The majority of people will have to decide to reject the system and struggle to change it.

HT: With violence?

Tobias: In a peaceful manner. However, the police are attacking our demonstrations, and I’ve suffered this in my own flesh. You have to defend yourself. When the Communist Party grows, they’ll look for a way to outlaw it. Currently there’s a very small membership so it’s not represented in Parliament. You need a minimum of 5% of the vote to go to Parliament and we only have 0.3%. The German State makes it very difficult for people in the Party; if you’re a member, you can’t work as a teacher for the State.

In the beginning, Tobias’ friend Stefan limited himself to interpreting and didn’t want me to take pictures of him. Eventually, though, he told me his story, which was very different from that of Tobias. His parents don’t come from the former East Germany and they didn’t lose their jobs in the fall of the Berlin Wall. In fact, his economic situation is pretty comfortable.

HT: Why would you want to change a system that isn’t harming you?

Protest march of the German Communist Party. Photo:

Stefan: I’ve been an activist in the German Communist Party since 2013, mostly through the activities of “Cuba Sí”. But back in 2006 I had already participated in some student demonstrations in my city, because they wanted to establish a school enrollment fee. Many pre-university and university students held protests. We were able to change public opinion, and the enrollment fee that had already been introduced was eliminated. That’s how I began to become politically active, although politics had always interested me. My family isn’t rich, but we’re comfortable, we never lacked for the necessities. I never feared that my parents would lose their jobs. I wasn’t aware of it at the time, but we belonged to the bourgeoisie.

If your family was economically comfortable, why were you fighting against paying for enrollment?

Stefan: I wasn’t fighting only for myself. I realized that it would be unjust – a good student whose parents were poor couldn’t study. But the most important event in my political awakening was that after graduating from high school I went to Ghana for my social service work, thinking that I could help fix the world. I worked on a project constructing solar heaters for the people there. This counted as my civil service, an alternative to doing my military service. These are projects where you do civil service work for Germany; they can also be out of the country, like help in the development of other countries. I think that the year in Ghana formed my character. I noted the privileges that my passport gave me when it says “Stefan, etc., white, blond hair, blue eyes”, though all of that is mere chance.

I still have friends there that have grave needs. At times they’ve written to me in Germany asking for help with very basic needs. I belong to the perhaps 5% of the world who lives well, materially speaking. I realized that if I want to help better the world it’s not enough to send a little money, make some heaters; it has to be through political work. It’s not enough that an engineer makes a great discovery in his field. When you analyze things profoundly, you figure this out – at least, that’s my opinion. I reached this awareness through Cuba and through friends. That’s why I joined the Communist Youth.

HT: So Cuba is your ideal?

Unanimous reply of “NO.”

Tobias: Cuba isn’t paradise, but it’s the only socialist country in the world. Because of that, it’s very important for all of the movements around the world. It’s an example, maybe not the best, but it demonstrates that not only capitalism exists, and that socialism can work.

HT: From your point of view, what do you see of socialism in Cuba?

Tobias: The planned economy, the free health and education services, that’s very important.

HT: If they’re free, how do you suppose that they’re paid for? The money to finance them must come from somewhere.

Tobias: From tourism, from doctors in other countries, naturally from the country’s workers, from the Cuban people.

HT: So we do pay for it in some way?

Tobias: Naturally, but that’s the difference. In Germany the workers work and work, but the money that they generate and that the companies earn ends up in private bank accounts. Of course, they’re paid a salary, but everything is being privatized. There’s something like nine hundred thousand millionaires in Germany. On the other hand, there are a lot of poor people like my parents who’ve worked their whole lives, up to sixty hours a week, sometimes holding down two jobs at the same time.

HT: Don’t you think that the changes taking place in Cuba are leading our country in that same direction?

Tobias: I hope not. The changes are dangerous, but necessary: the blockade is very strong.

HT: I’m not referring to the latest events in the relationship between Cuba and the United States, because at any rate the blockade still continues, but to the fact that the State has given up controlling many things. There are more and more private businesses, foreign investment is broadening…

Tobias: I can see that those changes are real and that it’s a problem. However, the Cuban State has always had very little money. They realized that more than two million people in Cuba weren’t working productively.

HT: And isn’t it possible that the cause was having the State control everything?

Tobias: Yes. That’s why it’s a new intent to save socialism, but with small private businesses.

Stefan: I think that they weren’t working efficiently because they didn’t have an adequate means of production to work with. In order to improve the standard of living, you have to renew the means of production and find areas of the economy where Cuba can, in fact, generate an income in hard currency

Tobias: Also with the modernization, many jobs that were being carried out illegally became legal ones.

HT: But weren’t they illegal in the first place because the state had an interest in controlling everything?

Tobias: Yes. But in that way, some people were working only for themselves and not for all of society. That’s not the idea of socialism, but to generate an income that can be shared among everybody.

Stefan: I believe that the problem in Cuba and in general is that the government didn’t get the people to understand the idea of Marxism and Socialism and the social project here, which doesn’t intend to exploit people but to distribute the resources in the best way. Many Cubans feel exploited. They wonder why they are working so hard for 400 pesos in the national currency. They think that someone is getting rich from their work, as happens in capitalism. I don’t know what the annual balance sheet of the Cuban State might look like, but I’m sure that the country’s income is not being privatized like in many capitalist countries with more resources than this.

HT: Have you noted the social differences that exist in Cuba and that they’re growing deeper?

Tobias: Yes, and that’s a problem, but you have to look at the causes. There are many people who receive money from their family members in the United States. That’s not a socialist problem. There are also people who work in tourism, and if a foreigner gives them a lot of money they can even live without working for a few months. That’s not the fault of the Cuban State, nor is it their objective for some to have more than others.

Stefan: Many people have commented that party functionaries or military officers have privileges – maybe not in the form of money, but in merchandise or other things – a case of beer, for example, that they can transport in their car. Having a car in Cuba is also a privilege, because you can transport people, earn yourself some money. I don’t know how much a high ranking military officer earns, but I’m sure that it’s more than 500 Cuban pesos (equivalent to 20 US dollars).

Tobias: Also, the retired teachers, for example, can continue working and receive a salary in addition to their pension.

HT: Do you know what a pension here will buy you?

Tobias: Very little, I believe.

HT: That’s not only the case for those who are retired. The salaries of active workers and of professionals with a great deal of responsibilities in their workplaces also cover almost nothing.

Tobias: That’s why it’s very important that Cuba receive a lot of money, and, in turn, that’s why the modernization of the economy is crucial. It’s a problem, but the changes are necessary.

HT: What do you think about the lack of freedom of expression and of the press in Cuba, the existence of only one political party; is that what the Communists in Germany aspire to if they achieve power?

Tobias: I believe that there is freedom of expression here. I’ve spoken with a lot of critical people who express themselves openly. Also there are blogs such as Havana Times, Diario de Cuba. People don’t go to jail for writing in them.

HT: I haven’t been arrested, but many people have gone to jail for exercising independent journalism. Also, the media that you’ve mentioned is on the Internet. I can’t start a printed newspaper here in my country. All of the television channels belong to the State; you can’t legally found a political party. In the capitalist Germany that you criticize, your political party is legal. Here, a non-communist youth organization, or even another organization of Communist youth wouldn’t be legal. Another Communist party wouldn’t be legal. The idea exists that all of the opposition in Cuba is pro-capitalist, but there’s a lot of opposition on the left and from the socialists. That’s not legal either.

Tobias: It seems logical to me that it wouldn’t be allowed, as in my country it’s logical that they wouldn’t allow a party such as ours.

Stefan: The violence against leftist demonstrators, especially against the communists, indicates that that’s not going to be accepted, and that if the party grows they’re going to outlaw it. Also, the media engages in a lot of negative publicity, so that people are afraid of communism. When they speak of the GDR in any part of the media, they speak badly of it.

Tobias: There’s no way to obtain a radio station, because there’s no money.

Stefan: In my country you can do anything with money.

HT: That is, if you had the money you could obtain a radio station. Here, in Cuba, not even with money.

Tobias: Today “You can comment at the Granma site and on the Internet. It’s a problem that for a long time debate didn’t exist, but I believe that they’re heading in the right direction.”

Tobias: When the party was larger, it was outlawed. In Germany, there’s another communist party called the German Marxist Leninist Party. It’s a small party, but they have a lot of money. However, they’re not allowed to present anything on television.

Stefan: In Germany you can found a party, as long as it’s a party that supports capitalism, that’s not going against the system. All of the parties that are in Parliament support capitalism. There are Social Democrats, Neoliberals, even leftist parties, but all of them support the system. In the German democracy, the people can vote for a party that will govern for four years, but they can’t make the laws or elect the President. There are no official grassroots organizations; no women’s organizations, no workers’ organizations.

HT: In Cuba those organizations were created from above, by the government. Or at least they respond to those interests, even if they existed before. There can’t be any other organization of women, nor any other labor union, for example.

Tobias: But you have the right to join a mass organization and to express your doubts.

HT: Any organization, no; the ones that the government created.

Tobias: True, but I don’t see that as a problem. You can change the organizations from below.

HT: Those organizations were created to respond to the interests of the government.

Tobias: My first impression is that I don’t like it, but I’d want to know the reasons.

It’s a little difficult to explain that it’s not just about being a person who’s a good neighbour, without a criminal background or a history of anti-social behavior. You can be the most respectable person in the world and not be in sympathy with the regime and thus not belong to the CDR. That makes you ineligible to be a professor in higher education or to work in tourism.

Tobias: I repeat that I don’t like it, but I can understand that it’s important that those who work in tourism be honest people because there’s a lot of money there.

HT: You can be honest without sympathizing with the government. Or do you believe that only those who sympathize with the government are honest?

Tobias: By my way of thinking, the ideal State is that which embodies society’s interests and so I can’t separate the interests of the State from those of society.

HT: But society is one thing, and the state is another, and the government is another. Here the problem is that we think that the government, the party and the people are all the same thing, and that’s erroneous.

Stefan: But what’s the difference between the party and the government?

HT: Here, none. There’s one sole party that’s the governing body, and it controls all of society, which has been absorbed into the State. But in reality, I can work in favor of society without sympathizing with the government. In your country, you’re opposed to capitalism, but that doesn’t mean you would steal if you began to work in a factory.

Tobias: Yes, but I’m definitely going to work against the interests of the factory owners and in favor of the interests of the workers, of the people.

Stefan: I worked for the owner of a small food stand. It was a case of exploitation right out of one of Marx’s books: the boss up above, smoking, fooling around, and me in the kitchen sweating. I could pretty well calculate his profits – generated by my work – and they were quite high, but he paid me a very low salary. So, I stole from him.

HT: (to Stefan) What do you think about the lack of political freedom in Cuba?

Stefan: I think that for a long time feedback was lacking. There was no communication from the government to the people, nor from the people to the government. It was sad that so many people went to prison for expressing their ideas, but I can’t judge this because I don’t know much about these cases. But the people also fell into a kind of political resignation. There were no discussions like the one we’re having now. I’d like to see this kind of thing on Cuban television. I think that the country’s leaders don’t have anything to hide and that they’re right, they can explain what they intend to do here and what capitalism is, but in a public debate. They have a lot to gain and very little to lose.

Tobias: That’s already under development. You can comment at the Granma site and on the Internet. It’s a problem that for a long time debate didn’t exist, but I believe that they’re heading in the right direction.

Stefan: It concerns me that the people are so apolitical, especially the young people, that they don’t feel that politics is part of their lives.

HT: Don’t you think this is because the people feel they have no options? Here, if you don’t feel represented by the Communist Party because you’re not a communist, you don’t have the option of affiliating with some other party.

Tobias: Only 80% of the government are Party members. You can get to Parliament and make your proposals without belonging to the Party. For example, if in your neighborhood CDR you are proposed as a candidate and they vote for you and they later elect you in other elections, you can get to the National Assembly.

HT: If you belong to the CDR. What if you don’t sympathize with the government nor belong to the CDR?

Tobias: Why would someone not want to belong to the CDR, or to a mass organization if they wanted to change something?

HT: Because you can’t create any, except for those created by the government.

Tobias: The government already represents the people. Why would you want to create something outside of that? I can’t see the need.

HT: It’s not about you seeing it, but about the fact that whoever does feel this need should have the right to do so. There are other political parties here, but they’re illegal.

Tobias: But if you have the possibility of expressing your ideas in the mass organizations that exist, why create one illegally?

Stefan: It’s as if in Germany, a person who could go to Parliament via any of the parties that existed, wanted to start a new one. What for?

HT: So why belong to the German Communist Party if you can get to Parliament via the other parties and the communist one isn’t in Parliament?

Tobias: You can’t compare capitalism and socialism that way; in capitalism the interests of only the few are represented. In socialism they truly seek to represent the majority of the people. The five parties in Germany represent the interests of large corporations that earn millions of Euros every year. You don’t have the least possibility of becoming part of the government and making changes. Here, with ten thousand signatures, any proposal can reach Parliament.

I try to tell them about what happened in 2002, when the now deceased Oswaldo Payá collected the necessary signatures (more than ten thousand) under the auspices of the Cuban Constitution that they praised so highly, to introduce changes in the legislation. The reaction of the government was that Referendum for Irreversible Socialism. The referendum didn’t consist in anonymously marking a box on a ballot like in the elections. Instead, the presidents of each CDR went house to house collecting the signature of each resident. The fact is that the majority of the jobs at that time were state jobs, and a letter of recommendation from the CDR was a condition for entering into many sectors. This represented a strong pressure for many Cubans. I’m among those who signed out of fear of losing my job as a university professor.

Explaining this to Tobias and Stefan is difficult. They don’t know who Oswaldo Payá was, like many Cubans. They look skeptically at me, but both are convinced of one thing: even if what I say is certain, despite all of its problems, Cuba has more democratic potential than Germany.

33 thoughts on “Cuba has More Democratic Potential than Germany

  • And better rum

  • Finally Mr Moses… finally admit YOUR shortcomings…”baseless attacks, no facts. Very boring”….it has certainly taken you a long
    time to admit this…..Congratulations my friend….didn’t really think you had “it” in you.

  • The famine Mao intentionally created during the Great Leap Forward is well documented. The orders Mao gave. The speeches Mao made explaining and endorsing the policy, are all part of the public record today. These facts are backed up by reports from eye witnesses and the records which were made and kept by Chinese government. Mao didn’t hide what he was doing, he boasted of it. As he said to a Politburo meeting at the time, “Killing brings many good things. We need a policy of more killing.”

    Much of the expropriated food was sent to the USSR in payment of the weapons and machinery the Russians were selling to the Chinese. That’s business, Marxist-style: paid for by the mass starvation of peasants. The peasants were “historically outmoded petit-bourgeois counter-revolutionaries” who needed to be liquidated to usher in the Communist utopia.

    The statistical record is also very clear. In ordinary societies, the number of deaths per year remain quite constant, especially in large countries. In China, there was a sudden drop in population after 1960 which took years to recover. Even today, there is a dip in the number of Chinese aged 53 to 56 years old, as babies born during the Great Leap Forward were especially vulnerable to the famine, while starving parents tend not to bear children.

    The Great Leap ended in catastrophe, resulting in tens of millions of deaths.[3] Estimates of the death toll range from 18 million[4] to 45 million,[5] with estimates by demographic specialists ranging from 18 million to 32.5 million.[4] Historian Frank Dikötter asserts that “coercion, terror, and systematic violence were the very foundation of the Great Leap Forward” and it “motivated one of the most deadly mass killings of human history”.[6]

    Following the disaster, Mao lost some political power and was demoted for a few years. In 1966, he launched his comeback through what came to be known as the Cultural Revolution. Mao used the fanatical Red Guards as a means to exact revenge on those who had stopped his Great Leap Forward in 1962. Yet more killings.

  • His recant only made it worse. He tried to focus on changing strategy. The problem is that the original strategy was his idea. Logically, he should be the LAST person to make changes to his own policy. But then, that is but one of the problems with a dictatorship that has remained in power 56 years.

  • Mao Tse-Tung huh?

  • I think it’s a simple case of Castro trying to extricate his foot from his mouth. Ops!

  • Dan, the Payas murder was plastered all very the western media. Everyone knows what happened, wink, wink. Cuba is a very dangerous place to drive if you pose a threat to the communist regime. Just ask general Pedro Gomez who was scheduled to be interviewed by UN investigators looking into Cubas illegal arms shipments to North Korea. oh wait, he’s dead too! Another “auto accident”.

  • Oswaldo Paya died in a car crash .
    As I recall what I read of the details, the car was speeding and either was already on a dirt road or came to a bad spot on a bad road and crashed with several eyewitnesses ( roadside locals) to see the accident.
    Your claim is analogous to that in the “Black Book Of Communism” which claimed that just about everyone who died while Mao Tse-Tung was ruling China , died because of something the (gasp! ) communists did .
    You do not win propaganda points by posting stuff that is known to be bullshit.

  • Fidel Castro clarified/changed his statement a few days after he made the comment .
    That’s either a lie of omission or a willful ignorance of unwanted information on your part.
    Which ?

  • IC, you can read about unconstitutional government acts in the US in the paper all the time. I’m an attorney, and I see unconstitutional acts by judges frequently, particularly when involving parties of limited means and education. Since this is an article about Germany, all I have to say is Na,und? I think it is highly relevant who was financing and directing Paya. And yes, we do know what happened to Paya, he died in an accident, riding in a car w/ an agent who had a horrendous record of reckless driving. If there were a scintilla of any causation by the Cuban government, it would be plastered all over Western Media.

  • Even so, you could not constrain yourself from adding a few words, five adjectives in a row.

  • There you go again. Baseless attacks, no facts. Very boring.

  • Guys, I don’t know if you both use computers but if you do, I ask you if Facebook
    and Google are names you are familiar with? I’d wager the answer is totally yes
    and what’s amazing about these two internet sensations is that the founders aren’t millionaires, they’re billionaires! Here’s the other bit of info for you, Google is one of the most sought after companies to work for in the world! In short Yusimi and Tobias, the dream you are espousing is over! Totally over so my suggestion is to figure out a better way to change the world where folks like your parents, Tobias, who wanted to visit friends within their own country and could not ’til the wall came down would never have to endure that insanity again! ps- isn’t it great you can
    share your differences on a venue where your doors won’t be knocked down because of your opinions? And yes, Apple, a company that has Capitalistic
    tendencies, is one of the top companies in the world to work for AND makes a pretty good capitalistic phone. You guys have one????

  • Besides…..I have always felt safe wherever I’ve been in Cuba….SAFE…..can’t say the same when in the US of Arms…..where “everyone” is packing guns…..and cops continually use innocent black kids as targets

  • Lots you don’t get…..just will not admit it… only “get” what you want to get

  • LOL….You can’t really address my statement so you try and muddy the waters huh? It’s a bit transparent, even for you Dan.

  • In the 90’s I used to stay in Pinar, right across the block from Paya’s church. I remember how people would comment on the brand new Toyota van he would tool around in. Wonder where his money came from.

  • Yusimi brings up a good point at the end of this article, one that is sore point among armchair bolsheviks world wide, one they don’t like to acknowledge…..The Varela Project. The events surround the Varela Project expose the lies of the Cuban revolution.

    The Varela Project hoped, through legal and constitutional means, to put into law rights afforded to Cuban citizens in the Cuban constitution which are currently ignored. By putting into law constitutional rights, those that took the initiative hoped to cement the respect for these rights and have them be guaranteed to all Cubans.

    The Varela Project aims to bring into law:

    • The Right to Freedom of Speech and to Organize
    • Freedom of the Media and other means of communication
    • Freedom of Enterprise
    • Political Amnesty for Political Prisoners
    • New Electoral Laws and Democratic Elections

    They gathered the necessary votes (not an easy task in a totalitarian state) and although the initiative was entirely within the framework of the Cuban constitution the Cuban regime acted against all those involved and people were expelled from work, university or school for merely supporting the initiative. Lots of the promoters were thrown in Jail. ….and of course we all know what happened to Oswaldo Paya.

    The repressive Cuban government has only one purpose, to maintain the castor’s and military elite in power! …And they will try and squash anyone that get’s in their way!

  • In the quoted discussions, neither of the Germans used the word “potential”. That was something Yusimi added to the title.

    So long as Raul Castro insists there will be no political reforms, and so long as the Cuban Communist Party maintains their monopoly on all political power in Cuba, there will remain zero potential for democracy in Cuba.

  • /…But Cuban music is way better than North Korean Odes to the Great Leader, and Cubans are much better dancers. Furthermore, North Korea sits in last place for press freedoms, 196th our of 196 countries. Cuba is way up the list at 191, ahead of Iran, if still a bit lower than Syria.

    Also Cuban beaches are nicer, which is Wayne’s only point of reference.

  • Fidel Castro said himself that Cuban socialism did not work for Cuba. If you insist, I can cite my source. No where on the planet, where the ruling government declared themselves to be socialist, has that government succeeded. Please don’t mention China or Vietnam because they are not even close to being “socialist” by anyone’s definition. So what is it that I don’t get? Unless you have a working crystal ball, how do you know what I will “get” in the future. What I pity are folks who, for lack of an intelligent comment, make worthless little comments like the one you just made.

  • John, please cite a source that shares your definition of socialism. We have been to this rodeo before and you ignored my question. Pick any source other than a family member and post the link.

  • Why wouldn’t he? They have more in common than you obviously want to acknowledge. Both have family-run dictatorships. Both have limited internet access. Both have military budgets far in excess of the international norms for countries of their size. No freedom of the press, no freedom of assembly, etc. And, as of last year, we now know their have an active and illegal trade in military hardware. Finally, they are BFFs diplomatically. Fair comparison.

  • if these two gentlman are any indication the German Communist party is in a world of trouble LOL

  • You have access to totally factual and accurate information as to what socialism is; the internet.
    You choose to term state capitalism, a totalitarian form as dictatorial as free enterprise capitalism, “socialism” despite that availability .
    Freedom of the press and freedom of assembly are not antithetical to socialism . You can look that up .
    They are, however antithetical to all the totalitarian forms you support.
    Socialist forms have never existed and therefore cannot “devolve ” as you put it.
    The state and capitalism which make most decisions for us are totalitarian from the get-go and, as seen, in the USA capitalism ( the unelected dictatorship of money ) has corrupted the US government to its roots.
    It is anarchist belief that any GOVERNMENT long enough in power becomes self-preserving, corrupt and totalitarian but you can add in capitalism when you consider it is what rules the United States .

  • The key word is “potential”……so don’t jump all over these comments…..TIME will tell…..we shall see

  • I agree…..nicely said

  • So you really aren’t comparing Cuba to N Korea are you???

  • This is a very interesting article and shows the disconnect people have with life. We are limited, always, not in potential but at any given time there is a limit. In Germany and Cuba the limits are different. Both the interviewer and the interviewees are struggling against these limitations. Happiness comes when one recognises ones limits and accepts them, not in a manner that doesn’t allow one to progress, but because even if one does progress one will be in the same situation, limited. Cuba is a beautiful country. If every country followed its example then nobody would starve and there would be no environmental crisis to name but two positives. That’s two limits taken care of.

  • U still don’t get it…..and never will….pity

  • What an excellent article!

    By letting these two young German Communists talk, they demonstrated exactly how ignorant, hypocritical, self-contradictory, false and unprincipled their ideology is. One need not add another word to discredit them. They did it perfectly themselves.

  • I live in San Francisco. Just across the SF Bay from the People’s Republic of Berkeley. I have had many conversations with armchair Bolsheviks like Tobias and Stefan. After going around in circles with these clowns talking about how socialism really works, you can always trip them up when you ask why it hasn’t worked yet. They also have no answer for how ‘capital’, necessary for starting businesses, is accumulated in socialism and who decides how much accumulation is acceptable. Finally, and here’s the closer: pseudo-socialists have no answer as to why socialism always devolves into totalitarianism. Why freedom of the press and freedom of assembly is always antithetical to socialism stumps ’em every time.

  • This idiot is better off in North Korea!

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