Privatization in the name of "socialism"

Over a million jobs cut as Cuban state-capitalism
imposes a new wave of market reforms on the workers

by Mark Williams

(CV #46, November 2011)

The following article is a speech, edited for publication, that was originally given at the “Detroit Workers' Voice” Discussion Group meeting on May 15, 2011. It discusses the dramatic changes in Cuba that were ratified at the Sixth Congress of the Cuban "Communist" Party, April 16-19th, 2011.

In this Detroit Workers' Voice Discussion Group meeting we will discuss Cuba and the recent economic changes and austerity measures there. The Detroit Workers' Voice leaflets and this discussion group have been created by supporters of the Communist Voice Organization, which upholds anti-revisionist communism. Naturally, we hope our views are taken up by other workers and activists. But this discussion group is not open merely to those who agree with all we have to say. We hope these discussions provide a forum for workers to speak up, learn, and give their opinions on how to advance the workers’ cause.

Solidarity with the Cuban working masses requires that workers here oppose the efforts of US imperialism to bully and blockade Cuba. Obama continues the economic embargo of past presidents since the 1959 revolution toppled the hated US-backed Batista dictatorship. Thus continues the arrogance of Republican and Democratic administrations. First US imperialism tried to strangle the revolution with the Bay of Pigs invasion and now hopes to economically deprive it.

But solidarity with the Cuban workers also requires opposition to the Cuban government and the social system it has overseen. While Raul Castro, who has replaced his brother Fidel as the leader of the Cuban bureaucracy, still claims to be "defending socialism", this road to "socialism" has long been a myth. It's not that they've simply hit some unfortunate setbacks while striving to bring about socialism. It’s that they long ago consolidated a new form of oppressive state-capitalist society that’s now more and more heading to market capitalism. That's why just as the capitalists of Europe, the US and elsewhere are pounding the masses with brutal austerity measures, so is the Cuban government.

The Cuban "socialist" leaders unleash capitalist austerity measures

Indeed, the Cuban regime is taking a backseat to no one when it comes to austerity. The most stunning measure was the decision to eventually cut over a million jobs in the state sector. Keep in mind, the entire workforce of Cuba is about 5.5 million, with about 85% employed by the state. Indeed already by the end of March, about half a million state jobs were scheduled for elimination.

Raul Castro took no pains to conceal his disdain of the Cuban worker. This past August he announced that "We have to permanently erase the notion that Cuba is the only country in the world where people can live without working." And he ranted against "inflated payrolls in nearly every field of national life" and "wages that have no connection to results". He emphasized the need for "suppressing the paternalistic approaches that discourage the need to work". As it turns out with every capitalist, so it turns out for Raul: when the economy tanks, turn on the workers.

Why, to listen to this, one would think the Cuban worker had it easy. In fact, merely procuring enough food and the simplest necessities has long been a monumental struggle for the Cuban worker no matter how hard he or she worked. Much of the population is forced to rely on the black market to get basic goods they need. No doubt such a miserable return for their work hardly inspires the workers' productivity, too. To the extent that some workers were placed in fictitious jobs by the Cuban government, this was not because the workers were too lazy to work real jobs, but because such jobs did not exist. That policy was more or less a way for the Cuban rulers to cover up the unemployment that existed in the state-capitalist economy. But the fake "socialist" leaders of Cuba offer nothing to solve this problem but further ruination of the workers. They seek to inspire productivity in classic capitalist fashion, by mass layoffs and the threat of destitution.

In line with tirades against "paternalistic" or "egalitarian" treatment of the workers, the Cuban authorities have come out with big cuts in the social programs. These social programs have been in tatters for quite a while, but have at least kept the Cuban workers from utter destitution or starvation. Well, it's a new day. For all of society, the plan, according to a draft of the "Economic and Social Policy Guidelines for the Party and the Revolution" of the pseudo-communist party, is "the orderly elimination of the ration book system as a form of distribution that is regulated, egalitarian and subsidized" (#162).(1) The ration book was a big part of the social safety net that guaranteed a certain, if very limited, amount of basic food and other items.

And what awaits the new army of unemployed? Unemployment benefits will be cut after a few weeks. (Six weeks says Marc Frank, a long-time apologist of the Cuban rulers.) After that, according to the official pro-government Cuban trade union center, the unemployed are supposed to largely wind up as "self-employed" or rent land from the state for farming. What does self- employed mean in reality? That a million laid off workers will magically become well-off businesspeople? No. It means a giant army of unemployed workers will be forced into a des perate struggle for survival. At best, it means converting workers who had some stable income and benefits into petty entrepreneurs with no stability, hoping to keep their tiny ventures afloat.

Of course the government admits that a lot of those ventures will fail, and undoubtedly, such petty businesses always do. In fact, what will pass as "self-employment" will, for many, likely be little more than hustling in the streets and trying to get an odd job here or there. Even assuming the best outcome, what will likely happen is what always happens with small peasant production and small enterprise. A relative handful will get ahead and will become real capitalists, hiring (and exploiting) those whose ventures fail. So the basis for a more expanded private capitalism is created as the answer to the economic woes of the state sector. And the split of the masses into workers and bosses becomes more commonplace. Indeed, laws forbidding these types of enterprises from hiring outside their own family are being abolished.

Some analysts think that the unemployment may be less than imagined. Why? They think a number of the state enterprises will be privatized, and the privatized enterprises will absorb back some of those who were tossed out of the former state enterprise. That's possible.

Cuban state enterprises evolving into private business

This raises the question of how the state economy operates overall. For many years, the Cuban regime has allowed certain state property to be converted into private businesses legally owned by a section of the elite. The new economic measures pave the way to greatly expand this process. Moreover, even if the majority of the economy remains state property, the enterprises themselves will more and more run much like private businesses do in "normal" capitalism.

In fact, for decades Cuba state enterprises have actually adopted many of the basic features of capitalist enterprises. After getting underway with government assistance, enterprises were largely "self-financed". Since each firm had to rely on its own resources, they behaved according to their own financial needs, no matter what the centralized state plan said. State plans were rarely fulfilled, and gradually the plans themselves simply adapted themselves more and more to the prevailing anarchy actually going on within the state sector. This sort of state-capitalist economy has been the heart of the Cuban economy since the 1970s, and on this basis grew the new state-capitalist class structure, with well-off and privileged bureaucrats and managers on one side, and impoverished workers on the other.

Side by side with the failures of the state economy, the black market grew, along with more experiments in private production and sales. The increasing reliance on private capitalism zoomed with the collapse of the state-capitalist Soviet Union, which the Cuban economy was dependent on. This included a big push to bring in foreign capitalist businesses, which today play a significant role in key sectors of the Cuban economy.

While outright private and foreign capitalist enterprise has grown, the state economy still remained dominant. But the conversion of state property into private property and the incorporation of "free market" practices by the state economy as a whole has been vigorously pursued by the Cuban leadership.

Present Cuban leader Raul Castro and the ruling bureaucracy has spent the better part of two decades pushing for privatization reforms of the type reflected in the economic program announced over the past months. To get some idea, one can look at the measures described in the Cuban party's official document called Economic and Social Policy Guideline for the Party and the Revolution. This document lists over 290 measures on all facets of Cuban society, but here we will confine ourselves to the section called "The Economic Management Model".

The essence of the reforms is scaling back state financing of the Cuban economy and letting each enterprise sink or swim like private capitalist businesses. The document declares there should be a big reduction in enterprises getting government funding. It states that while health care and education will remain government funded, "the number of budgeted entities will be reduced to the minimum" and calls for "the maximization of saving on personnel and for the state budget with regard to material and financial resources."(#31) Leaving aside the question that government support for health and education has also been deteriorating, this indicates that the state sector is to be greatly reduced. Indeed, this is the rationale for cutting the jobs of around 20% of the total Cuban workforce.

And this theme of cutting state-financed enterprises is emphasized again and again. The document states that "Budgeted entities to provide productive services or for the production of goods will not be created. Budgeted entities that can finance their costs from their own incomes will become self-financing . . . or they will be converted into enterprises." (#32) "Self-financing" means, even if you are still supposed to be a state enterprise, you're essentially operating like a private enterprise. As to the difference between "self-financing" entities and entities converted into enterprises, this latter entity ("enterprises") may in this context refer to state property converted into legal private forms. But this is not spelled out in the document. In any case, the Cuban policy is certainly to greatly expand the legal private business sector. And when the document says budgeted entities will not be created for regular goods and services, this means that either the state sector will shrink to a large degree, or what's called the state economy will be stripped of it's state funding. Probably a combination of both will go on.

These economic reforms do not end the "self-financing" state-capitalism system. But they show how state ownership in Cuba adopts basic capitalist features and is evolving more to "normal" capitalism. The document states that "control over enterprise management will be based principally on economic-financial mechanisms, in place of administrative mechanisms, removing the burden of controls on enterprise activity". (#14) This means each enterprise has more freedom to do what it wants in its own economic self-interest without government interference. It's further stated that "enterprises as a rule will not receive budgetary financing to produce good and services." (#17) So each enterprise will operate as an independent entity whose existence depends on its own resources, that is to say, whether it can turn a profit or not. Lest there be any doubt, the document says that enterprises that have sustained financial losses will be liquidated. (#16) By the same take token, profitable enterprises can use their profits as they see fit for future development. (#18) Further, enterprises can "independently decide the number of workers on their payroll" (#22) and can set their own wages, whether in the form of bonuses or slashing them if that's what's needed to make them profitable (#18 and #19).

So we have enterprises that sink or swim according to their own financial fortunes and whether they can turn a profit or not. We have enterprises that can hire and fire workers as they chose. We have each enterprise altering the wages of their workers to suit each particular management's needs. In short, we have all the fundamental features of capitalist enterprises. And since each enterprise is placed in the position to turn profits or die, they are effectively placed in competition with one another, and the anarchy of production found in all capitalist countries soars, creating the grounds for further economic crises. With such a state structure, or rapidly shrinking state structure, there can be no real societal economic planning no matter what hoped- for results some state planning body draws up and no matter how many phrases about building socialism abound.

This has been the trajectory of the Cuban economy for many decades. Whereas a society in transition to socialism would be overcoming each part of the economy operating in independent and anarchic ways, the Cuban economy has gone in the opposite direction. Real social control by the masses over the economy has never existed, and now even the pretense of overall planning is fading into the sunset.

Keeping the old bureaucracy in charge,
while transitioning to the market economy

The recent bombshell of austerity measures ushered in under Raul Castro has been a long time in the making. Raul wanted to bring more market capitalist methods into the Cuban economy. But he feared this process might threaten the existence of the present ruling bureaucracy itself, such as happened in the former Soviet Union and other phony socialist countries. Raul made no secret of his fondness for the Chinese government's method of transition to market capitalism, where the process would take place under the tyranny of the phony communist leadership. To do this, Raul and like-minded Cuban bureaucrats including Fidel, began having the Cuban economy step-wise placed largely under the control of armed forces officers. Raul had headed the armed forces ministry since the early days following the revolution before he assumed the duties of head of state and the party in 2006 when Fidel fell ill. Placing the army in control of the economy assured that Raul could put his closest associates in charge of the economic transition and shove out any rival bureaucrats with disagreements on the pace and methods of capitalist reforms. And placing the armed forces officers into economic management positions meant the officers could get much better salaries and perks, including, in some cases, direct ties to foreign capitalists who were entering the Cuban economy. In other words, loyalty was assured in part by bribing the military hierarchy.

Cuban armed forces officers become capitalist-trained economic managers

This process started in the late 1980s. Raul began to send high-ranking officers to Western Europe. There they studied the newest business practices. Studying Marxist economics was not part of the course. Rather, they studied the likes of the famous capitalist management consultant Peter Drucker. Drucker was famous in capitalist circles for advocating widescale outsourcing of jobs as well as various bankrupt labor-management cooperation schemes to create the illusion that workers and management had common goals. If you visit the Drucker Institute web site, you will find how they admire such things as the present sellout UAW leader Bob King's proposals that the UAW commit to getting along with management rather than concentrating so much on defending the workers. Of course, such labor-management cooperation has been a disaster for auto workers, resulting in drastic concession like cutting future workers' wages in half. Other capitalist management training materials for the Cuban officers came from the IMF and the World Bank, the notorious tools of imperialism which impose austerity measures on country after country. And the training also included US economists sponsored by the Ford Foundation and other US institutions.

The new economic methods associated with this training were called the SPE (sistema de perfeccionamiento empresarial) or "business improvement system." The army takeover, while designed to keep the old-guard rulers in charge, was not designed to bring about stronger state control over individual enterprises or convert employees into military regiments. Rather it was about putting into practice the trendy market-capitalist theories. A focus was on eliminating government subsidies, implementing mass lay-offs, basing the enterprises on what would improve profits, and having the economy based on market demands of the moment. Socialist planning under the control of the workers was nowhere in this plan. Even the old-style bureaucratic centralized planning was kicked aside. One writer aptly called the SPE business improvement system "the closest approximation to a capitalist-type of organization within the current conflicting trends and pace of reforms in Cuba" and "a peculiar experience of privatizing the Cuban state."(2)

The SPE methods were first implemented over a decade ago within the armed forces sector's civilian wing. 40% of the civilian workforce, some 27,000 people, were canned. This "success" led to Raul Castro announcing in 1998 the spread of these business methods throughout the economy. About a third of state enterprises were targeted by the year 2000. Ever since, the armed forces have expanded their grip and the SPE model to a vast amount of the economy. By 2003, the military controlled 89% of the export economy and dominated the foreign trade sectors, tourism, civilian machinery repairs and parts and other sectors. Its reach extended also to various goods and services including sugar mills, biotechnology, consumer products, etc.

The spread of the SPE has created the basis for increasing the class differences in Cuba between the workers and the bureaucratic, party and military hierarchy. These class differences are not new, but they are more pronounced than ever, and are embraced as official policy. In the last two decades, state property has been parceled out to various top bureaucrats and officers to run as private enterprises. For example, there are the "sociedades anonimas" which are private companies where the Cuban elite and foreign capitalists are shareholders.(3) These are big players in the tourism industry, for instance, but also branch into other fields. Various other legal types of private Cuban companies that were formerly state property have also come into existence. The former bureaucrat of a state enterprise is becoming a private capitalist.

The spread of privatization and capitalist-oriented entrepreneurs from within the state economy has been the basis for corruption scandals among the Cuban leadership. The government itself occasionally has to prosecute high officials for corruption, but it cannot put the genie back in the bottle. Corruption is widespread. That's why even a loyal Cuban party commentator, Esteban Morales, recently published an article called "Corruption, the true counter-revolution." The article by no means questions the basic Cuban system, but it can't help but note that corruption is rampant everywhere. And that includes the high officials which Morales contends are the main danger to Cuba. He talks of "people in positions of government and state who are girding themselves financially for when the Revolution fails, and others who may have everything almost ready to transfer state-owned assets to private hands, as happened in the old USSR." He notes this sort of corruption is what led to the recent removal of the head of the Air Force, General Acevedo, and complains that the official Cuban press hasn't provided an adequate account of what happened.(4) For this, Morales was expelled from the Cuban party. According to other sources, Acevedo and other airline officials secretly sold space on Cuban planes to transport good for various Latin American companies, pocketing millions of dollars off the books. There are even reports that Acevedo was setting up his own private airline.

Imperialist investment and the enrichment of Cuba's top bureaucrats

As mentioned above, a mutual-enrichment program exists between foreign capitalist investors in Cuba and Cuban officials. This took off in a big way in the 1990s, following the collapse of the Soviet Union, which the Cuban economy depended on. Today foreign capitalists have a significant hold on important sectors of the economy. Tourism plays a critical role in the economy and foreign firms have been building luxury hotels and golf courses for tourists and the Cuban elite. Foreign firms mine Cuban nickel deposits, which is one of the chief exports. Cuba's largest citrus grove operation is run by an Israeli capitalist, Rafi Eitan, who happens to have been the European chief of operations for the Israeli Mossad, the terrorist Israeli secret intelligence organization. While domestic enterprises account for the largest part of the economy, foreign investment has increasingly become critical to the Cuban economy. For example, tourism is a major source of hard currency. This hard currency in turn is vital to whether Cubans get enough food since the country's food supply is largely imported.

All sorts of measures have been taken by the Cuban government to make sure the foreign investments are highly profitable. The Cuban government builds infrastructure for foreign capitalist projects, and it has relaxed the labor codes to entice investors. Recently foreign capital got another treat, with the Cuban regime agreeing to lease state property for foreign capitalist investors for as long as 99 years. Some Canadian developers, who are big players in Cuba's tourism industry, said this was important to investors who see this as tantamount to "virtually full ownership" and a long-term safeguard to protect big projects from incursions by the Cuban government. Inspired by such measures, two Canadian companies recently agreed on a new joint venture, a fully self-owned business that's officially part of Cuba's Ministry of Tourism that will build a $200 million luxury hotel. While the Cuban workers suffer brutal austerity measures, the Cuban leadership and outside capitalists are busy greasing each others' palms.

While capitalists from various countries are investing, the unjust US blockade prevents US companies from doing so. This is despite the fact that there is building pressure from US companies to get in on the action. In fact, some US food producers actually do export to Cuba. But while the US economic blockade is an outrage, this hardly means that US investment or other foreign investment is going to be a means to "save socialism" as the Cuban government maintains. No, foreign investments in the Cuban context today are merely another route to the transition from state-capitalism to market capitalism. It is not saving the Cuban masses, who are being driven down as never before, but contributing to the widening gap between the top Cuban officials and the impoverished and unemployed workers.

The transition to socialism vs. Cuban revisionism

So far we have tried to give a brief picture of how state-capitalism is transitioning to private capitalism in Cuba. However, when we critique fake communist regimes like Cuba, it's not merely to point out they are exploiters and tyrants and imitate the normal capitalist countries in many ways. We think that exposing such regimes is necessary to salvage a vision of genuine communism, a vision that reflects the outlook of Marx, Engels and Lenin. We stand against the regimes that have revised communism into a state-capitalist nightmare, and contrast their views to what we call anti-revisionist communism.

The American ruling class and their educational system and media constantly drone against communism as synonymous with tyranny, or at best a nice-sounding theory that can never exist. Of course they do this to promote capitalism, to present it as salvation or eternal. But when countries run by self-proclaimed communist parties betray communist ideals, when they clearly have privileged party and state officials lording over workers who can barely scrape by and have no real say in how society is run, this makes the job of the apologists for capitalism that much easier. The phony communist regimes undermine workers entertaining a vision of a revolutionary alternative. And so do left-wing groups that apologize the Cuban regime, that insist that whatever goes on in Cuba, the Cuban rulers must be supported, or that even if there are mistakes, Cuba is still some kind of workers' state or socialist.

The workers' revolution, as envisioned by Marx, Engels and Lenin, involved the workers overthrowing the capitalist system and eliminating the private ownership of the productive resources of society. Instead of the economy being run by capitalists for the purpose of amassing profits, the workers would collectively own and run the economy, both at the enterprise level and on an overall societal basis. The workers' state would not be a state that merely provides some social programs, but can only fulfill its role by drawing workers and other exploited classes into running the affairs of society. This process would take a protracted period of time. That's because the issue is not simply seizing the workplaces from the defeated capitalists, and it takes time for the workers to learn to run society, to learn to shed the habits learned under capitalism. And it takes a protracted period to create the economic conditions that allow workers to have the time and training to run society. Thus, there is an unavoidable period of a transition to socialism, a transition during which the division of society into classes, into exploiters and exploited, breaks down. This transition lays the groundwork for socialism. Only when the socialist order is established can all the ills produced by the capitalist drive for profit fully be overcome and production truly be based on the needs of the masses. With the elimination of class divisions, eventually the need for the state itself, even a workers' state, ceases to exist. Societal control of production would continue, but this would no longer require an apparatus that represses part of the population, even if, in this case, we're talking about repressing the remnants of the capitalist exploiters.

When we critique the systems that developed in Cuba, or the former Soviet Union or China, it's not because they didn't instantly make the transition to a fully socialist or communist society. Indeed, we recognize that in the period of transition to socialism, various capitalistic features will still have an important influence in the transitional economy. There may be such things as "self-financing" of enterprises for a period of time, as well as commodity exchange and money. But unless these things are overcome, then a new form of capitalism will arise, even if formally the economy is in the hands of the state. The features of capitalism that remain in the transitional economy can be eliminated only to the extent that the workers can bring the economy under their conscious control and insure that the economy is more and more run as a cohesive and collective whole.

The revolutions in Russia, China, Cuba and other countries got rid of the horrible old social orders and brought with them certain progressive changes and social programs. But the revolutionary motion ebbed, and the issue of workers controlling things was shoved to the side. The new political and economic institutions grew separate and apart from the control of the working masses. In these conditions, the lingering features of capitalism were not overcome, but grew, albeit in new forms. Eventually, the new political and economic institutions became, in fact, the property of a new bourgeois elite of economic managers and high party officials. And on this basis, new class antagonisms were created. What happened in these societies was not the gradual overcoming of capitalist leftovers, but the growth of capitalism under a state/party hierarchy, a new type of state-capitalism. And as time passed, the capitalist nature of the state economy became more naked, more room was given to private ownership, and foreign capitalist influence increased. Market capitalism began to grow within the womb of state-capitalism.

The Cuban revolution of 1959 was a great feat. The Batista dictatorship and the dominance of US imperialism were done away with. The Castroite leadership of the revolution initially had wide support of the masses. But it never had a true socialist vision. Within a few years it had hitched its fate to the Soviet Union, where the Stalinist regime long ago transformed the workers' revolution into a state-capitalist tyranny which subsequent Soviet regimes tried to keep alive by adopting more market measures. As mentioned earlier, in the 1970s the Cuban leaders adopted much of the Soviet-style "self-financing" enterprise system which meant enterprises had to act more like private entities than the property of the whole society. Along with this, the disparities in living standards in Cuba grew between the official and managers and the working masses. Not only could high officials legally make much more than the workers, there were all sorts of perks and privileges. For example, the system of official "parallel markets" arose, which became known among the masses as rich people's markets because only the elite could afford the goods there.

Officially, there was a communist party that ruled, but unlike a real communist party, it was not a party of the workers but of the privileged high party and state rulers. Yes, they provided some meaningful social programs, but those programs have been whittled down to the bare bones. More importantly, the workers never had control of society, they never decided policy, but merely had to accept what the party and its subservient mass organizations ordered. This is not just our opinion but is widely admitted by groups that support the regime as some sort of workers' state. They will say that the workers are consulted about various things, but don't decide anything. In other words, they say Cuba is a workers' state, or a deformed workers' state, while acknowledging the workers aren't really in charge. Some allegedly socialist defenders of Cuba admit that even their own friendly criticisms of certain Cuban policies would get them banned in Cuba. That shows that such apologists for the Cuban rulers can only continue to support them by stripping any revolutionary content from the idea of a workers' state.

But if the workers are not being converted into the rulers of society, there can be no talk of a transition to socialism. Indeed, what we have seen is that rather than various capitalist features being overcome by the growing control of the workers, the exact opposite has taken place. Workers have grown cynical about the fake communist rulers, and the Castro regime is openly lashing out at the workers as lazy bums who need to be beaten down so they will work harder. Fifty years after the revolution, Cuba is transitioning from state-capitalism to market capitalism. The left-wing groups that continue to promote illusions in Cuba may claim that what is happening now is just a temporary retreat. But it's a retreat for over 40 years with no end in sight. The Cuban leaders today have made this clear. The future they see for Cuba is austerity, private capitalist methods, and more reliance on foreign capitalists.

Some may cry foul. They may say we criticize the moves made by the Cuban leaders but don't offer an alternative policy that they should follow that would put them on the socialist road. But from our standpoint, there are not a series of mere policy changes that will turn Cuba into a socialist country. We can no more recommend reforms to the present Cuban system to make it socialist than we could recommend reforms to the US capitalist system or the Bush or Obama regimes that would produce socialism here. We are not against any reforms if they really help workers in Cuba or the US. But there are no reforms that could bring about socialism. Only a revolution can do that.

That by no means consigns us to a passive stand regarding the Cuban workers. We must always stand against US bullying of Cuba. And our aim in exposing the Cuban revisionist rulers is to encourage the Cuban workers to take up the task of building up real class organization independent of, and opposed to, the Castroite rulers. This is needed to combat the austerity measures and political repression they face as their rulers adopt capitalist market methods. It's needed to expose the roots of the problem in the state-capitalist solutions of the past. And it's needed to build a political party based on anti-revisionist communism which can present to the workers, and eventually guide the workers to, a genuinely socialist future.  <> 

Notes

(1)(#162) is the number of the policy guideline calling for eliminating the ration book in the first draft of the Cuban Communist Party document Economic and Social Policy Guidelines for the Party and the Revolution. In the text above, wherever a number appears between parentheses, it is the number of a policy guideline in that document. This document served as the basis for the policies adopted at the 6th Congress of the Cuban party in April 2011. The English translation used here is by Marce Cameron, of the Australian-Cuba Friendship Association. Cameron is a supporter of the Cuban regime and claims the document refutes the idea of the restoration of capitalism in Cuba. Cameron's translation was web-posted at: http://walterlippmann.com/ pcc--economic-and-social-policy-guidelines-2010.pdf.

(2)Amuchastegui, Domingo. "FAR: Mastering Reforms." Cuba in Transition: Volume 10. Papers and Proceedings of the Eighth Annual Meeting of the Association for the Study of the Cuban Economy (ASCE), Coral Gables, Florida, August 5, 2000. p. 433. Amuchastegui was a political officer in the Cuban armed forces general staff and professor at Cuba's national defense college. He defected in 1994, and now writes for CubaNews, which seeks better relations between the US and  Cuba from a bourgeois point of view.

(3)The term "sociedad anonima", "anonymous company", is used in various countries for joint-stock companies or corporations.

(4)http://progreso-weekly.com/2/index.php?option=com_content&view= article&id=1589:corruption-the-true-counter-revolution&catid=36:in-cuba&Itemid=54.


Articles on Cuba

In 1995-98, Communist Voice carried a series of articles on how the Castroist system has developed over the years and the different phases the economy has gone through. They show that the present Cuban crisis isn't simply a result of the collapse of the Soviet Union and its aid to Cuba, but has strong roots in the class contradictions of Cuban state-capitalist society. They also show how the Castroist leadership has dressed up any measures it takes, no matter what impact they have on the workers, and no matter what Cuban workers thought of them, as "socialism". These articles are available at the CV website, see http://www.communistvoice.org/00Cuba.html.



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