Thursday, March 19, 2009


CUBA. Culture Exchange destination number 1. I recently ventured out of my box to get a dose of culture at its finest and traveled from the cultural giant of Havana to the tourist trap of Varadero, Cuba. The people are proud and there is a strong sense of community that sadly lacks in North America. Crime is low, the recent upgrade of the bus system makes it easy to get from point A to B, and the overall vibe is as Caribbean as it gets - laid back, my sort of town. Cuba is culturally rich in music and the arts, however the food is extremely limited compared to the rest of the Caribbean and there seems to be no agricultural infrastructure what so ever...nutrition was obviously not on Castro's priority list. You have to apply for a car, house, apartment through the government, education is free, and jobs are delegated for the most part. The people are proud, but I disagree with Castro's infrastructure. In many ways the people are enslaved by the government directly and lack personal freedom, where as our enslavement in North America is structured through credit and corporate interests and is psychological in nature rather than physical. Both systems are corrupt and in desperate need of reform. I believe compromise is key, and doing away with ideological extremes and finding a middle ground will be our savior. Socialist, democratic, he say, she say…let me sum it up for you – DIVIDE AND CONQUER. There is good and bad, truth and lies, justice and injustice in ALL political structures. NO ONE has the answer and no ONE society is free from corruption. The people of Cuba are its saviors and the strong sense of community is genuine as apposed to the patriotic arrogance of other nations. I highly recommend visiting this unique destination before U.S. relations are mended and capitalism corrupts one of the last cultural strongholds free from corporate tainting. Two thumbs way up Brasil style. –Mr.-

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