Vidal vs. The Bushes

Is It A Do-Or-Die Proposition?
Updated: Tuesday, September 2nd, 2015
       Because America is the world's undisputed economic and military superpower, the current presidential campaign in the United States concerns everyone. And no one more so than Josefina Vidal. She is Cuba's Minister of North American Affairs. That title aside, she is Cuba's most important person when it comes to Cuba's most important issue -- its relationship with the United States. Ms. Vidal is not only Cuba's prime diplomat on all things American, she is also the island's key decision-maker regarding the United States. Thus, her opinions and appraisals of the ongoing U. S. presidential sweepstakes have talismanic and cataclysmic ramifications, certainly for Cuba and perhaps even for the United States. If that strikes you as being an hyperbolic exaggeration, then I suggest you take time to study Josefina Vidal's astute evaluation of the U. S. presidential race: {1} If a Democrat wins the election, the Obama-directed thaw in U.S.-Cuban relations will continue on positive notes; and {2} if a Republican wins the election, Cuba will consider itself on a war-footing beginning in January of 2017. The vast disparity between those two extremes, the difference between war and peace, is not one that Vidal takes lightly and her views are not ones that should ever be discounted by Americans. A simple but highly significant fact is this: Vidal knows more about U.S.-Cuban relations than any living soul. If that were not so, U. S. and Cuban flags would not now be flying at newly opened embassies in Havana and Washington; and if that were not so, the Miami Cubans in the Little Havana neighborhood and the U. S. Congress would have certainly regained control of Cuba during the two-term George W. Bush presidency {2000-2008} that preceded Mr. Obama {2009-2017}.
       Vidal keeps a close eye on the polls that tally the shifting sands and attitudes related to the Republican and Democratic presidential campaigns. She, like all foreign analysts, is astounded that presidential and congressional elections in the U. S. primarily involve so much special interest money that the so-called democratic process is bought-and-paid-for now and into the future by a handful of individuals and corporations. Further, she is astounded that even capitalism gets away with dictating that such campaigns drag on month after month after month, subjecting...actually punishing...Americans with endless streams of political ads and punditry, but Vidal has lived in Washington and realizes that ad agencies, television stations, and other self-serving entities have their paid lobbyists who make sure the money-making aspects of political campaigns are contiguous, with one beginning as soon as the other ends. Vidal also understands why less than half of the Americans eligible to vote actually vote in national elections: Everyone realizes that one vote/one person is becoming meaningless when a few billionaires can so easily predicate the outcome, perpetrating a process whereby the richest 1% overwhelms the 99% that includes the upper-class, the middle-class, and the poor. Having said that, Vidal is stunned by what she is seeing in the polls: At long, long last, it appears that this generation of Americans -- young adults and millennials  -- have finally grown tired of a bought-and-paid-for U. S. Congress and a bought-and-paid-for presidential process.
        Josefina Vidal, Cuba's expert on all things American, expected the 2016 presidential campaign in the U. S. to be a foregone conclusion -- the Democrat Hillary Clinton against the Republican Jeb Bush. That's because the money-crazed electoral process favors dynastic successions because, let's face it, such candidates have had more time to sell their services and policies to the highest bidder, including foreign interests utilizing obscene speaking and consultancy fees. With unlimited donations from Wall Street and other billionaires, Clinton and Bush had the money and the last names needed to wipe out all contenders, right? Well, maybe not. In this first week of September, 2015, polls show that maybe...just maybe...Americans are concerned enough to try to recapture their democracy from dynasties and special interest money. That surprises Americans who might now consider voting. It certainly surprises Josefina Vidal whose interest is even more of a life-and-death proposition: She things if Clinton or any Democrat wins, U.S.-Cuban relations will continue to improve; but if Bush or any Republican wins, she thinks little Cuba will end up in a David-vs.-Goliath war with big America. So, the election might well determine if Americans can reclaim the portions of their democracy stolen by dynasties and special interests. Moreover, it might well determine if the island of Cuba is forced to engage in a war it is not capable of winning. At least, that's the opinion of Josefina Vidal, the Cuban whose job it is to predict such things. Her island depends on her being right.
       One thing Josefina Vidal did not predict is that Donald Trump and Ben Carson, in this first week of September, would have strong leads in the Iowa and New Hampshire polls ahead of Jeb Bush and the other 15 Republican candidates. But the revelation pleases Vidal immensely. She believes the Trump and Carson bandwagons are flourishing because they are perceived as non-politicians, indicating that Americans have grown tired of bought-and-paid-for politicians who cater and answer only to the billionaires who buy them and keep them in office as entrenched incumbents, year after year and decade after decade. Trump is a billionaire businessman who supposedly doesn't need to sell out. Carson is a doctor and, to his advantage, a non-politician. Vidal's reaction to the August 31-Sept. 1 polls: "It's a long process but I hope I continue to be wrong. Thomas Jefferson, who wrote the U. S. Declaration of Independence, said that a democracy needs a revolution every 20 years to correct or straighten out imperfections. Perhaps that is what I am seeing in the U. S. now, not a military revolution but an election-cycle revolution."
      To be honest, I thought Vidal was blowing smoke with that reference to Thomas Jefferson, and I was literally born within sight of Mr. Jefferson's Monticello home in Virginia. But, on second thought, I never knew Vidal to blow smoke before so I googled Thomas Jefferson quotes. Sure enough, Vidal was correct. Jefferson made the reference in a long letter to his friend William Stephens Smith dated "Nov.-13-1787."
            Meanwhile, as Josefina Vidal is verily surprised that non-politicians Trump and Carson are leading the polls in the Republican presidential sweepstakes, she is equally as surprised that an elderly socialist Independent Senator running as a Democrat, Bernie Sanders, 73, has mightily narrowed a 60-point deficit down to single digits in his contest against a slumping and equally surprised Hillary Clinton. Vidal gleefully detects "the same general reasons," meaning potential American voters may have finally grown to detest bought-and-paid-for politicians, especially ones of a dynastic nature. Bernie Sanders is an old renegade who has long believed that Wall Street crooks should be in prison "for legally stealing billions of dollars and routinely paying just a pittance in fines, which mocks our democracy each day of the year."
       Josefina Vidal, on her last diplomatic mission to Washington, admitted she was surprised that Elizabeth Warren was "not in the presidential race." So are millions of Americans who have signed petitions begging her to run. Presumably this summer Vidal read this Time Magazine that profoundly asked, "Who's Afraid Of Elizabeth Warren?" Well, all the presidential contenders are afraid of her and so are all of the billionaires, especially the denizens on Wall Street, who are busy buying them up. Warren, a first-term Senator from Massachusetts, turned 66 back in June and she's feisty and robust. Vidal now thinks Warren could win the Democratic bid for the presidency and then probably beat the Republican nominee in November, 2016.
        Elizabeth Warren is a dynamic speaker whose words resonate with the vast majority of Americans even as they blister the ears of the rich, greedy cretins she feels are unfairly afforded the opportunity to "buy democracy as easily as buying another yacht." Please, Ms. Warren! Will you reconsider not running?
        Through all the twists, turns, nuances, trials, tribulations, and machinations of America's convoluted and polluted political system, Cuba's keen observer, Vidal, believes a handful of elderly billionaires {Photo courtesy of The Washington Times} will get their wish and put a Republican in the White House in January, 2017. Shortly thereafter, Vidal expects that, amidst the cold ashes of President Obama's detente, Cuba will be obliged to defend itself. No, she doesn't expect to win such a scenario but "we are willing to be judged, as we have been judged for many decades, by how much we will sacrifice in defense of our sovereignty."
         Two first-term U. S. Senators -- Marco Rubio from Florida and Ted Cruz from Texas -- are prime threats to Jeb Bush's bid for the Republican presidential election. That's despite the fact that Rubio was a Jeb Bush protege in Florida and Cruz was a George W. Bush protege in Texas. Both Rubio and Cruz are darlings of the Tea Party, Fox News, and a significant array of right-wing and Jewish billionaires. And both Rubio and Cruz are Cuban-Americans will a visceral hatred of Fidel Castro and Revolutionary Cuba. To outsiders, it would appear that the last people Josefina Vidal would want as President are Rubio and Cruz. To insiders, however, it is known that the last thing Josefina Vidal wants is for another Bush in the White House. "Most...I said most, not all...of the pain and suffering of everyday Cubans," she says, "relates to the Bush dynasty, not just beginning with the CIA directorship in 1976 but beginning, as we know, in the 1950s."
          There are many people -- especially the very, very rich -- who prayerfully hope for a continuation of the Bush dynasty. There are also many people who dread such a domination of the American democracy.
       This photo dates back to October of 1992 when the Bush dynasty and a lot of sycophants in South Florida believed that Revolutionary Cuba was doomed with the demise of the Soviet Union. Cuba almost was doomed, but not quite. It's been that way for a long time...almost, but not quite. Polls show that most people in South Florida, even in Miami's Little Havana, favor ending the embargo and allowing Cubans on the island to breathe...and even to thrive. But not the Bush dynasty. For sure...no, not the Bush dynasty.
         This photo shows the latest Bush presidential candidate, Jeb, at a news conference with Mel Martinez, one of the long-time most ultra-powerful Bush-aligned Miami Cuban-born politicians. Right behind them are the Diaz-Balart brothers -- Havana-born Lincoln and Miami-born Mario. Both Diaz-Balart brothers made it to the U. S. Congress from Miami, largely because their father, Rafael Diaz-Balart, was a Minister in Cuba's overthrown Batista dictatorship and then became one of Miami's richest and most powerful anti-Castro Cuban exiles. It is interesting to note that Mel Martinez and the other most powerful Miami Cuban-Americans favor Jeb Bush over Marco Rubio, who is one of their own, in the current presidential campaign. That says something about the Bush ties to the most hard-line Cuban-Americans.
        In the many months leading up to Americans going to the polls in November of 2016 and voting for their next President, Jeb Bush will be interviewed hundreds of times on cable television. He will be asked a lot of softball questions because cable television needs a lot of talking-head politicians and tough questions would discourage their cooperation and appearances. So rest assured he will not be asked such pertinent questions as, "Jeb, could you explain to the American people your associations with Orlando Bosch? Specifically, did you ask your father, when he was President and you were cementing your political career in Florida, to pardon Mr. Bosch? And would you explain why, and have you regretted the pardon?"
        A lot of well-known and well-respected American journalists and authors, such as Russ Baker, have been dismayed over the secrecy attached to the Bush dynasty, which began in earnest in the 1930s with Prescott Bush and is expected to continue with George Prescott Bush, the son of Jeb Bush who recently got elected to the powerful position of Land Commissioner in Texas. A website connected to the "Family of Secrets" book by Russ Baker provides many documented facts that, perhaps, Americans should know.
        In any case...an interested Cuban named Josefina Vidal is quite aware that Marco Rubio, Ted Cruz, and Jeb Bush are prime Republican candidates to be President of the United States. Rubio and Cruz are Cuban-American anti-Castro zealots but...the possibility she most dreads is....a President Jeb Bush!!
          Meanwhile, Josefina Vidal and most Cubans on the island -- along with most Americans, most Cuban-Americans, and most people around a war-torn and troubled world -- strongly desire a continuation of improved relations between Cuba and the United States. May sanity, after all these decades, finally prevail.
Vidal reminds me of Robert Frost:




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