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La Perfidia

Christ with the biggest news being Terry Francona reading 'Twas the Night Before Christmas at the Pops, I'm reduced to bitching about the WBC bullshit … now they've gone and excluded Cuba.


Yeah, one of the few countries that can field a legitimate team of its own citizens and not rely on US playahs pretending to be foreign isn't allowed in "the Classic." Yeah, that makes total sense.


And these days, Cuba is really the only country in the world that can legitimately call baseball its National Pastime. Our government's Castro obsession bordahs on the psychotic.


I mean, yeah, I get the pahty line: Cuba is a communist country with some serious human rights issues. But, hello, China can play?


Yeah, the same China that just the other day killed between 10 and 20 fishahmen for having the audacity to protest Chinese government policy. Woo hoo, let's play two!


And it's not like Hugo Chavez in Venezuela is a postah boy for democracy, but Venezuela's in.


It's really a shame Singapore couldn't field a team and get to play a couple games at home because, you know, what's a little caning among friends?


Yeah, you're eithah with us or against us, except, er, when you're against us but you're still with us because we're eithah scared to piss you off or you've got something we need to maintain our standard of living or both.


Yeah, all Castro has going for him are cigahs, beaches, hot babes, and some of the world's greatest musicians. And none of that crap puts gas in the Hummah, so you're totally shit out of luck, Comrade.



in USA's defense, Cuba did play a part in nearly causing mutually assured destruction. they wanted to be players, chose the wrong side, and are still paying for it.

Wow...I will continue to value my intact butt cheeks after looking at those caning pics.

Will BK Kim be serving up Korean meatballs in the WBC?

Dear Mr. Brachen:

The trademark LA PERFIDA is a registered trademark of Richard Cheney in the United States Patent and Trademark Office and is licensed throughout the world to Satan (aka The Prince of Darkness). Your use of this mark in connection with your clever little comic strip has appropriated the goodwill of the Cheney/Satan interests and has created confusion in the marketplace insofar as the mark gives us exclusive right to conduct affairs based upon "faulty" intelligence throughout the world.

I trust you will take this little reminder in the spirit in which it is given and retitle your comical strip for today "The WBC Rocks!" henceforth.

Yours truly,


in USA's defense, Cuba did play a part in nearly causing mutually assured destruction. they wanted to be players, chose the wrong side, and are still paying for it

True, but there's this little tidbit from the other day: Hacker attacks in US linked to Chinese military: researchers

So while one country was on "the wrong side" and took an aggressive (though some could argue defensive) military posture 40 years ago, another country has been on that same wrong side for those 40 years plus and is still actively engaged in testing our defenses (remember the plane the Chinese shot down a few years back?) and is going all out to build up its military (building an aircraft carrier, some very quiet subs, and long range missiles) ...

Hmm, which is the bigger threat?

I don't want to argue right/wrongs for Cuba or for China, only that the policy toward Cuba seems petty all things considered.

But as someone pointed out in the comments on another blog, this has as much to do with votes in Florida as anything else.

Such is life.

I'm quite surprised you didn't have a
Robert Redford, Spike Lee, Sidney Pollack, Oliver Stone, Woody Harrelson, Danny Glover, Ed Asner, Shirley MacLaine, Alanis Morissette, Leonardo DiCaprio, Harry Belafonte and/or Kevin Costner
reference to go in there somewhere...

Current US foreign policy with respect to Cuba exists to placate ex-pat Cuban Republicans in South Florida longing to return to the glory days of Fulgencio Battista and Meyer Lansky. ("Here we are, protected, free to make our profits without Kefauver, the goddamn Justice Department and the F.B.I. ninety miles away, in partnership with a friendly government.) But let's at least acknowledge the upside - it use to be that you had to go to Havana for great Moros y Cristianos. Come on George let the Cubans play!

I mean, yeah, I get the pahty line: Cuba is a communist country with some serious human rights issues. But, hello, China can play?

I was going to make a feeble defense of the policy, but after reading that, well, you got me.

Aw fuck it, I'll make it anyway. Forget about the votes, the inequal handling of other countries either actively or passively hostile towards the US, Libya on UNSECOM, and just remember that Castro's a dick.

Much as I hate the commies for what they did to my grandparents, I do think the embargo is kinda lame. It's the diplomatic equivalent of being at a party and conspicuously ignoring the ex-girlfriend who read your love letters to her friends. I say open up the markets and let the opposition sympathizers get filthy rich, then stage a coup.

The USA obsession over Castro has made sulking our official policy toward Cuba for over 40 years.

We couldn't beat Cuba after we helped them dump Spain. We ruined their country while teaching them baseball but nothing else.
When some Cubans decided not to be the USA's whorehouse and gambling den while few Cubans could read or stay healthy, the enemy of their enemy became their friend- standard procedure. However, Cuba's new pal was the Soviet Union.

The USA had a snit fit while Cuba had a evolution.

We failed to keep the Soviets out of our hemisphere. We failed to kill Castro or his brother, Raul (head of military). We failed to pull off a decent invasion.
Note to invaders: don't name military operations after swine.

Of course Castro believed he was backing the right horse by jumping to the Soviets. In 1959, Communism was the only alternative to what we were offering; Cuba didn't want what what we offered anymore. When the USA was around, Cubans couldn't read, died of curable diseases and were forced into full scale prostitution.
The Soviets sent guns and butter.

Castro is not a stupid man. He went to law school, he played baseball. He knows what the US is after.
He knows all we really want from Cuba is what we once had: Cuban women, cigars and baseball players.
He also knows being in cahoots with the USA means the end to a 98% literacy rate, and decent medical care.
Castro decided he'd rather be poor and well read than rich and stupid. Enough Cubans agree to keep Cuba alive. A lot don't agree, but they all live in Miami.

The Giant Satan still sulks, using all its economic muscle denying Cubans everything it can. Castro knows if he gave an inch, the USA would soon make Cuba a Haiti; a mess of a country that makes good baseballs on the cheap.

Does the United States deserve the right to rout Cuban baseball under OUR terms?

Face it: sulking is lousy foreign policy and it's bad for baseball.

The problem with the Capitalism creates freedom model is China...the ruling class continues to consolidate more power as they take their cut of economic liberalization.

Sort of like the current 2 party system in the United States...

Ric, JFK's alarming weakness caused the CMC. The USSR was much weaker militarily than the US in the early 60's. But, Khruschev saw:

a) Weakness during Berlin Wall construction. Several Euro allies reportedly assured Kennedy that if he made a show of force, NK would not build it.

b) the Bay of Pigs: JFK tells LeMay he does not want to get too deep in the invasion and LeMay points at his own head responds: "Mr. Prez, we're in it up to here." JFK's unwillingness to finish Eisenhower's job (on his own doorstep) was seen as weakness by NK.

c) The Vienna Summit: JFK made some baffling, strange comments in private conversations that NK takes as more evidence of JFK's weakness.

So NK put missiles in Cuba as a stone bluff. Recently released USSR/KGB stuff (and interviews) strongly suggest that NK would have abandoned the whole thing if we'd taken the sites out. But, like any good gambler, he had a read on JFK and knew that he could extract something from his bluff. Which turned out to be the secretly brokered removal of Jupiter missiles from Turkey, which Bobby promised to Gromyko.

I recommend Donald Kagan's "on the origins of war" for a full discussion of this topic. Don't believe the Bobby Kennedy/Ted Sorensen "13 Days" tripe that we were force fed in school.

I also recommend One Hell of a Gamble: Khrushchev, Castro, and Kennedy, 1958-1964 which gives quite a bit of info on those Jupiter missiles in Turkey that Jason wrote of above.

JFK came out of the Cuban Missile Crisis spinning it as if he forced Khrushchev to back down, but, in reality, the Soviets scored a victory in getting what they wanted all along: removal of the missiles in Turkey. This was all kept from the public until after the collapse of the USSR and subsequent release of classified Soviet documents.

Way to stir up the shitstorm H.B. Bravo. Here's what I think: Cuba can play in the WBC if they give us the little boy from a couple years ago back.

Castro can jam cigars up his a** for all I care but:

"Here's what I think: Cuba can play in the WBC if they give us the little boy from a couple years ago back."

Yea, 'cause giving a son back to his father is.... what, exactly?

Don't worry. In about 15 years, Castro will be dead and my generation will be in the White House and major committees in congress. Not a one of us could give a holy damn about Cuba as an "enemy state" since we were born in the mid-late 70s. All we know is that which has been kept from us is what we covet most....cuban cigars.

Free Trade with Cuba! Long Live El Cigar!

Yes, but when Cuban cigars are easily available in the US, they will lose that outlaw hipster appeal and nobody will give a damn.

I'm old enough to remember roadtripping across the state line just to get Coors.

He also knows being in cahoots with the USA means the end to a 98% literacy rate, and decent medical care.

"Decent Healthcare"?

In Cuba, someone is "literate" if they can "write a letter to Castro" (no joke). Amazingly, Castro's "war on illiteracy" began in January 1961 and was so amazingly successful that they declared the country literate in December of the same year.

No, Castro certainly is not a moron. He knows PR, that's for sure.

All I know is - Castro's got one sexy beard

re: cuban smokes
two guys smoke shop in Salem NH has a special on some cigars rolled in Nicuragua I think from real Cuban tobacco that has been stored in a climate controlled warehouse in Miami for the past 50 years. Limited availability, but the closest (legal) to the real thing. www.2guyssmokeshop.com
Nice guys, good prices

buckner, I have been there, not a bad place at all. Very nice selection.

buckner, I have been to 2 guys, not a bad place at all. Very nice selection.

LJ Peretti's in Boston is great. (50 yards from the four seasons) It's like stepping into 1948. They weigh pipe tobacco on a scale that's 200 years old and other old-school stuff like that.

The selection is vast and the manager is extremely tight with Carlos Fuente, so the place stocks the entire Fuente line at all times. Don Carlos, Opus X, Hemingway, Chateau Fuente, everything. If you like cigars and especially fuente, go there.

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