After the July 11th protest uppercut and the November 15th scare, Raúl Castro reinforced the order he had already given of not publishing bad news, but only good ones, even if they are false or pure fantasy. He is urging his bureaucracy to lie and promise more than ever.

The General may have thought that he’s been a bit careless lately, so he is reactivating with a vengeance the guiding slogan of Castro’s propaganda: “Only what is useful to me is true”, a basic tenet of cynicist American philosopher William James, and the antithesis of José Marti’s canon “Words are not to cover up the truth, but to tell the truth.”

The cult of deceit put down roots during Fidel Castro’s dictatorship. The older Castro lied throughout his whole life. To anesthetize “the masses” he promised the wonders of a bright future or fancied a light at the end of the tunnel.

Let’s see an example of Raúl Castro’s “carelessness”. A few months ago, Cuba’s Minister of Economy, Alejandro Gil (also a deputy prime minister), admitted before the National Assembly that during the first semester of 2021, agricultural and livestock production collapsed in no less than 16 of the 19 basic agricultural products that compound the Cuban diet; then he reported that the island’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP) would grow by only 2%, thus proving he lied in January 2021, when he announced that GDP would grow by 6%.

GDP fell by minus 13%, but the future is “bright”

Then in October Gil confessed: “we should not hold false expectations” and revealed that GDP had plummeted by minus 13% in the last 24 months. By the way, according to the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) the economies in Latin America grew by an average 6% in 2021, pandemic and all.

But Raúl Castro reacted, so on November 29, Minister Gil himself, at the opening of the II Cuba Business Forum 2021, stated that “the decline of the national economy has stopped (…)transformative measures taken by the government will change the overview (…) their main objective is to boost food production.” In other words, Cuba had been suddenly touched by the wand of Mandrake the Magician.

The ruling mafia continues to assume that nothing changed in Cuba after the July 11 massive protests  and November 15 grassroots mobilization for change. That after the images of savage repression in the streets and a staggering militarization of the country, Cubans and the world would keep swallowing the lies that Castroism has spread for decades.

If statism doesn’t work, the “solution” is more statism

Taking advantage of the fact that the forum with investors from more than 40 countries was virtual, so they could not verify in situ the disastrous state of the Cuban economy, Minister Gil assured without blushing that the solution to recover the economy and develop the country is “more socialism.” He pledged the government will carry on with “prioritized activities to improve the socialist State enterprise, which is our main economic subject.”

In short, the dictatorial leadership insists on what Albert Einstein considered a symptom of dementia: “doing the same thing over and over again, hoping to get different results.” In other words, if statism doesn’t work, then more statism is due.

They took away everything they owned, threw stones at them, and now they woo them

In its dismay, at the closing on December 2 of the aforementioned capitalist Forum, the dictatorship bestowed kisses and hugs to the “worms”, the same ones that decades ago the Communist Party ordered to throw stones and rotten eggs at, insult them, cover with paint and asphalt the facades of their homes and then confiscate their dwellings with everything inside.

This time around, another Castroist minister, Rodrigo Malmierca, in charge of Foreign Trade and Foreign Investment, told those “worms” who are businessmen abroad today ─after having been expelled from their homeland, after being left homeless, penniless, with barely the clothes they had on─ that now the “revolution” loves them, that it needs them.

Mr. Malmierca told them that the government wants “Cubans abroad to become promoters of their homeland’s development and well-being”. That it is “reserving about 60 projects as business opportunities where their family roots lie.” He also invited them to invest in 70 management contracts and 30 other businesses as long as the dollar amount they would disburse “is less than $ 500,000.”

Cubans are successful entrepreneurs because they fled Castroism

If no foreign capitalist in his right mind believes that there are suitable conditions today to invest a single penny in Cuba, how come they expect that Cubans who are prosperous businessmen precisely because they escaped from Castro’s communist hell are going to believe so?

What Cubans do know well is that what their country needs is an end to tyranny. Meanwhile, for Cuban families these Christmas and New Year celebrations will be the most frugal and least joyous ones in the history of the republic. They will not even be able to put on the table the traditional, indispensable roast suckling pig. There isn’t any, and if one miraculously appears on the black market, a mere five pounds cost about USD 70, almost three-quarters of a full minimum wage (USD 87).

That is the real Cuba, not the one fancied by the dictator and his claque.