The Small Illusion

Not having his brother’s instinct for taking advantage of any circumstance and for letting the docile press pamper him, President Raul Castro is a cabinet man, not given to stealing the show. But apparently, no one hinted to him that in the case of Sandy , he ought to go as fast as he can to Eastern Cuba, and should only mourn in private, since the priority is the living, helpless in the midst of desolation. A great number of Cubans have learned through the television news that more screen time is given to a visit from General-President to the cemetery of Santa Iphigenia and the Second Front, than to his trips through the neighborhoods of San Pedrito or Parque Céspedes in Santiago de Cuba. Accustomed half a century of ubiquitous fidelity, the comments about the presidential delay, and the comparisons between the ruling brothers, were heard in the street without having to fine tune the ears too closely.

Also without fine tuning the ears, it is perceived that the U.S. elections aroused greater interest than our own. The Venezuelan election was followed almost like a Madrid-Barco football final, some out of fear of returning to power outages, others from curiosity that Chavez will leave an opponent who suffocated him, others, dreaming that Capriles that would wear the presidential sash; many, by noting that democracy in Venezuela is different that “the democracy we defend.” Not that the U.S. elections generate extraordinary interest, but that the Cuban ones wold have been a total yawn, but for the inclement Hurricane Sandy.

Back to the Obama-Romney race; infected by streetcorner analysts, I think the Democrat, now in his second term, could pull a zugzguang — a chess term which means to force your opponent to move — on our government by the lifting of the embargo and the Cuban Adjustment Act, and proposing the normalization of relations.

But in any case, Cuba will not be a priority, and we must not expect others to solve our problems if we are not capable of solving them ourselves.

And apropos of nothing, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MINREX) complaint against interference in Cuban internal affairs by the U.S. Interests Section, could be a cord to increase tension in the “relations” of both governments, lest Obama softens his heart and decides to lift the embargo, which has served so well to justify both the inefficiency and the bad administration.

I don’t like the American electoral system, I don’t like that it comes down to two parties, nor do I like the complicated electoral college system, but the illusion of voting for the president, in our case it is literally an illusion, because who can vote for candidates when they are unknown to the citizens. You only need to see the press release after the elections to see the small heads of those designated by virtue of a closed election and a presidency known beforehand. Perhaps to know if someone was elected by what percent… perhaps.

I defer the illusion that my vote counts, because I’m sure that in the future, to elect my president, it will count.

Translated by WF

November 7 2012

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