Finding a Way for Cubans to Help Cuba

By Alberto Jones

Havana photo by Caridad

HAVANA TIMES, Feb. 11 — Now is the time for the Cuban people and its institutions to develop a different approach to attracting investment and development to the island and shake off the asphyxiating stranglehold of a half century embargo/blockade.

With the upcoming small business development plans to be enacted in Cuba, I am hoping Cuba will offer all Cuban-American business owners without links to violent acts against their country, an option to participate in the formation of Joint Ventures (51/49% ownership) in their field of expertise, which could generate hundreds of millions of dollars in income for the country, create thousands of jobs and put an end to corruption, misappropriation and waste.

Cuba could further offer Cuban-Americans and others from every nationality without a violent past, the opportunity to lease for 50 years a 100’ x 100’ (¼ acre) lot to build their homes in modest, mid and luxury locations throughout our country, providing a safe living environment for 500,000 senior citizens, generating billions of dollars, creating thousands of jobs and strengthening our international bonds.

Cuba could also offer every country in the world, the opportunity of creating Joint Ventures (51/49%) with the Tourist, Airline, Railroad, Energy, Chemical, Biotechnology, Agriculture, Construction, Mining,  Harbor, Fishing, Wholesale, Public Transportation, Banking, Merchant Marine, Heavy and Light Industry, etc., whose face value could be measured in trillions of dollars and the creation of hundreds of thousands of jobs for our youths.

Havana balconies. Photo: Caridad

Cuba’s urgent needs of acquiring tens of thousands of trucks, automobiles, construction equipment, buses, farmland machinery etc., could make a special offer to hundreds of used equipment dealerships in Florida and elsewhere, loaded with excellent equipment sitting on their lots, with no sale prospect now and far less in the future.

Should we add to this shopping cart, dozens of unsellable aging airliners, ferries and freighters rotting in United States waterways, every piece of school/office supply, medical equipment/supply, electrical fittings, plumbing supply, furniture, appliances, computers, TV and millions of pieces of auto parts, emptying all distribution centers and retail chains in the state of Florida and beyond?

Selling billions of dollars of such equipment at wholesale prices, would be a dream come true for these entities on the verge of bankruptcy, a huge gold rush for the impoverished state of Florida, the stabilizing of thousands of jobs and fulfilling President Barack Obama stated promise to go anywhere, anytime and speak to anyone, in his job creation quest.

By the same token, Cuba cannot continue graduating tens of thousands of its youths in all fields of knowledge, only to see them migrate and offer their expertise around the world for lack of resources, meager wages or technical stagnation at home?

Havana cats. Photo: Caridad

Why not welcome back those who left!  Why not allow everyone to travel wherever they wish!  Why not remunerate appropriately everyone for their skills! Let’s make it possible for Cuba to pay off all of our outstanding debts! Let’s share some of this enormous wealth of Cubans residing abroad with all Cubans living on the island.

The considerable material and financial resources that would become available to our privileged country, combined with its greatest asset of hundreds of thousands of highly educated citizens, would bring to an abrupt end, years of need and suffering and position Cuba to become to Latin America and the Caribbean, what Malaysia and Singapore are for Asia.

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5 thoughts on “Finding a Way for Cubans to Help Cuba

  • Alberto Jones, thank you for your efforts to propose positive ideas on how to help Cubans. While we all may disagree and even argue about what will work and at what costs, nothing good will happen without good intentions. What I mean is intentions to do good for the majority of people. That is what is lacking here in the USA. Those in power, called “the 1%” by not only the people in the street and supporting Occupations, but ever greater numbers of ordinary Americans.

    What has changed here is that a myth has been lost. For many years many or even most Americans were confused and thought we were all “middle class” and with a little luck and some effort, we too could all become rich. Now American’s can’t avoid seeing that we ordinary folks are stuck in the 99&% because the 1% run nearly everything – and they run it for their own benefit. Not ours. So the last thing Cuba needs is to adopt either the myth or the reality of the US today. Sure, some would profit as Julio seems to wish, but at the worsening expense of the rest of the people.

    Now, if Cubans can try out various social, economic and political experiments – motivated to both the personal and public good, then we may see needed improvements in all these spheres. I for one would love to put my retirement savings in a local credit union, designed to invest in local needs. I’d even be glad to do it in such a bank in Cuba, but you all know, the US government will not allow me to do that.

    So lets all support and work to improve good ideas and efforts to help the Cuban people as a whole, not just a few greedy people. We can now see the results of greed here in the US and the European economies.!

  • I have been to US, and when looking around there i cannot imagine how in the richest country in the world there can be so much misery. Lets say a big influence of those US people might not be the best. The only thing there ideology brought over the world was misery (not to mention also the crap nuclear reactors in Japan come from them too). So what should Cuba by from them??? Trucks and cars wasting twice the energy like todays Standard cars? Does Cuba have that much oil? No and it will never have. So forget about those trucks in Florida, they want help except filling about the bags of the worlds greediest and least solidarity people in the world. You will only get lazy fat assed americans abusing Cuban healthcare, like you already have. How many “relatives” come to look for the cheap Cuban doctor cause they can´t afford in the worlds greatest nation.
    End of the embargo and fair small investments and credits are what Cuba needs, the US is taken that possibility away from Cuba as well as the immense stupidness of the communist party with megalomaniac projects. They learned nothing in 53 years.

  • I have been to Cuba since I was 17. I went three times in the 80`s. Once in 1994(truly terrible times) and in 1998,99 and 2000. Since Obama allowed our people to return home,I have been back 4 times.

    My only comment is HAVE YOU AND I SHARED OUR THOUGHTS ?? It seems like a sound vision,does it not ? I see so many good minds turning to a craft that they were not entended for. Like a doctor serving as a chauffer-huxter. It´s so SAD !!!

    My impression of Cuba 2010 and beyond is that many do not want to leave. The USA seems to be irrelevant from a political point of view. Money is just flowing in (despite the recession) and all I can see in Havana and the provinces is a sense of renewal and RETURN.

    I am happy that I am a native New Yorker. José Martí knew my home city. I am as Cuban as any of those imbeciles in Miami that yell out anti Castro nonsense when they have not seen the suffering that Cubans have endured. I recall one pig in a suit. This potly guy thought the embargo should tightened. This was the kind of “asere” one would find in Central Havana. Just a Cuban hick with a nice car. Little did he care that his brethren did not have his body weight or shiny suit and that they were “comiendose un cable”
    (in a bad way),this tacky ¨Mayamero”(tacky Miami Cuban) also proposed opening a car dealership WHEN HE WENT BACK. You know,from the school of the late ,now defunct,rotten and dead ´Napoleon´ Más Canosa.

    In sum,I agree with your views 100%. I plan on wintering there in a few years. All I want from the US is to allow us to rebuild OUR homeland. We have ALL paid dearly for OUR Right of Return. Let the retards like the POLITIQUEROS in miami keep making a buck. I know some amazing people in all fields and I have always supported the Cuban people in my midst(family) and in the homeland. Governments notwithstanding. Escribe si quieres.

    This overseas Cuban saw a big difference in the Bush travel ban absence……

    Bush left Cubans horrified at how…

  • Good thoughts by Alberto. I would also propose that we have business and government bureaucrat exchanges where Americans live in Cuba for a month to six weeks and Cubans live in the U.S. for a month to six weeks. Kind of an adult exchange program, instead of what we think of typically doing with high school and college students (although we should do that too!). I think that both cultures would have a more sympathic understanding of each other’s needs and challenges. That should help to bring down walls on both sides.

    I loved growing up in Cuba. I felt safe, I had a good private elementary education (better than the U.S.), and a simple middle class home (apt.) with loving parents who both worked, in a nice part of Havana (Vedado) 1/2 block from the Malecon and a block from the U.S. Embassy. We didn’t have that much, but then, we didn’t need that much to be happy and comfortable with a roof over our heads. We had freedom of movement, freedom to invest, freedom to travel, and so on. Freedom of political speech was probably the main area where Cuba has seldom gotten it right whether it was during the Batista era (and before) or the Castro era. Hopefully, an exchange of people can help to improve that neurotic mindset of not being able to speak one’s mind in Cuba without fear of retribution. We complain about some of the stupid things the U.S. government does but we can express our opinions to our elected representatives. Cubans should be able to do the same thing. Government is supposed to work for the people. The Castros seem to either have forgotten that or never learned it to begin with. It’s a shame. Maybe an exchange can help to change that neurotic mindset of government bureaucrats who have no idea what either side is all about. That is, if the Castros will allow it. Now that both Castros are at the twilight of their lives, they should “man up” and try to undo the many stupid decisions that they made throughout their careers that created the trade…

  • Alberto are you kidding?

    Easier solution is already arriving…
    Natural end of the Castro dynasty.
    Democracy and Freedom back to our homeland.

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