By Benjamin Noria
HAVANA TIMES – Economic reforms implemented by the Cuban government in early 2021 are showing signs of failure. In fact, it goes without saying that virtually no measure the State has taken under the Revolution, has been successful.
The implementation of 100 Guidelines written up by the Cuban Communist Party for economic development in the country, that came before the Tarea Ordenamiento (current reforms), and which were overseen by Marino Alberto Murillo, the head of the Permanent Committee for the Implementation of Party Guidelines, is one example of this chain of failures.
A string of garlic has gone up from 70 to 85 pesos in just a month. A bottle of natural yoghurt started off costing 40 pesos and now costs 80. Individual pizzas went up from 27 to 40 pesos. Cellphones cost between 6000-25,000 Cuban pesos. However, the one thing that Cuban nationals have forgotten about is quality. That´s to say, everything is going up disproportionately in price, but the quality of goods isn’t improving.
If the State’s intention was for reforms to stimulate production of goods, then why is it that cooking oil, chicken, ice cream, soap, which are products that can be nationally produced, are becoming more and more scarce on the Cuban market between January and May 2021.
These reforms are going to fail, because every economic and political change first needs a cultural and moral change. This means that there won’t be any economic progress in the country until Cuba has freedom of speech, freedom of creation, a free market economy, civil and political freedoms, a culture of dialogue. No reform process can be successful if Cuban leaders don’t first change their mindsets.
Cuba’s communist government is founded upon a hate culture and contempt for intelligence. It’s an elitist system, that has no tolerance for criticism and improving doctrines of the masters that came before them. It’s conservative and backward.
Communists have always been excessive, irrational and fanatics. These are the qualities that define them all over the world. Mao Zedong’s dictatorship in China, Pol Pot’s dictatorship in Cambodia and Joseph Stalin in what is known as Russia today, are clear examples of this.
The combination of participation, equality, efficiency and autonomy is the key to progress. There are two ways to change society: revolutions are one, and reforms are the other. The latter are slower, sharper and proposed by a group of intellectuals. However, revolutions speed up change and are also violent and immense.
Cuba’s communist government is experimenting on the Cuban people. People in this country are lab rats of this totalitarian regime. The only thing the Cuban government has wanted to do right now is create the illusion of progress, increasing wages with money without any support in gold or dollars; because if last year’s GDP hasn’t grown, and we’ve been in a “temporary” recession ever since September 2019, then I ask where did this money come from?