HAVANA TIMES, August 25 — The Cuban government has decided to eliminate the monthly quota of cigarettes distributed through the nationwide basic products rationing system.  The smokes were available way below cost on the same list as subsidized food and hygiene products, reported IPS on Wednesday.  The move is part of the policy of President Raul Castro to reduce government spending.

4 thoughts on “Cuba Axes Cheap Cigarettes

  • grok: Your description as to the mechanism of socialism for hoisting society from capitalism to what you call “communism” seems to be “the progressive subsidization of greater and greater numbers of basic goods, as societal wealth increases.”

    According to this process, goods would get cheaper and cheaper in price as social wealth gets greater and greater, until society reaches a point where everything is so cheap in price that prices themselves become meaningless and are therefore discarded.

    After this point is reached, presumably, if a person needs a wristwatch or an automobile or a pack of condoms, he or she simple walks into a social warehouse or store, selects the needed item and walks away with it without paying in any way.

    Assuming that the above is what you are saying, are you certain that this sort of thing is really an accurate description of socialism?

    There are other who might disagree. Not every socialist is a Marxist who shares your idea of the mechanism of socialism.

  • The flippant comments below aside, this is a proper move. The government shouldn’t be subsidizing harmful activities. And if they can’t really stop them — they can make them cost a lot more. Socialism, being the transitional state between capitalism and communism, has to be in the business of rationalizing the true cost of everything — including most especially the progressive subsidization of greater and greater numbers of basic goods, as societal wealth increases. It is a bourgeois lie that socialism is supposed to be about making ‘everything’ free, up front. That is clearly a pipe-dream — and is meant to be taken as such. In fact, however, socialism is really about the progressive subsidization of all commodities to the point where eventually everything WILL indeed be free. But that would not be anytime soon, even in the advanced economies.

    So make people pay the full cost for smokes. Even if this move encourages smuggling, etc.

  • this move could be the end of the revolution

  • OTOH, if I may be so cynical, smoking does take a certain amount of pressure off the social security system, as most smokers, after contributing to their pensions all their working lives, seldom live on into their 60’s and 70’s!

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