Saturday, February 23, 2008

farewell fidel

'onlineopinion' had some discussion of castro on the occasion of his formal resignation. much was disparaging, but someone took the trouble to get some numbers, rather than just spewing out prejudice:

According to the UN Human Development Index, Cuba ranks 51st out of 177 countries. The US ranks 12th.

* On GDP per capita (in international dollars) it ranks 94th ($6000 per head). The US is 2nd ($41,890)

* On average life expectancy at birth it is 32nd (77.7 years). The US is 31st (77.9 years).

* On literacy of the adult population it is 2nd (99.8% of the population. (US no data).

* On combined primary, secondary and tertiary gross enrolment ratio it is 35th (87.6%). The US is 19th (93.3)

* On the Gender Development Index, which measures female life expectancy, adult literacy and combined enrolment as a percentage of the male figure, Cuba ranks 2nd out of 156 countries. The US is 107th (down there with the UAE, Bangladesh and Zimbabwe).

* On the Human Poverty Index, Cuba ranks 6th out of 108 developing countries - it is ahead of Singapore (GDP p.c of $29,663 - not clear why they call that a developing country since it's income is higher than Germany's!). The US has no data.

In other words, on about one seventh of the US average income Cuba managed to produce health and educational outcomes that are equal to or very close to those of the USA. Compare with the Dominican Republic (HDI rank 79, GDP p.c. $8,217) or El Salvador (rank 89, GDP p.c $5,180)
Posted by Lev, Friday, 22 February 2008 9:41:56 AM

compared to the performance of batista, and many other dictators embraced by the usa, castro has nothing to be ashamed of. was he a saint? noooooo. but while he shot a few people who were trying to kill him, various american presidents, champions of 'democracy' each one, were engaged in mass murder in south east asia, in central america, and lately in iraq and afghanistan.

and he continued to point this out, which may have made worse the determination of american politicians to starve cuba into submission. he's guilty, there. clearly he should have laid down and died. quietly.
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