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Ration Cards

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Ration Cards

Mensaje por LoriG el Mar Oct 16, 2007 9:26 am

Harsh Truth
That is right ladies and gentlemen, since the beginning of the so called "Revolution", the regime forced the Cuban population to use a Food Rationing booklet.
If you were to tell any Cuban on December 31, 1958 (1 day prior to Castro usurping power) that a few months from then they were going to be using a booklet to buy rationed food, that person would have thought you were stupid or insane.
Little did we know, that in fact, "The Pearl of the Antilles", "The Golf's Key", "The Most Beautiful Land Human Eyes Had Even Seen" (said by Christopher Columbus, 1492 on Cuba's discovery) was going to be rationed on even its ever lasting product… SUGAR.
But… what is it?
Think of the food rationing booklet as a little 6 x 4 (or so) notepad; It has several sheets, each displaying the type of food, such as Grains, Meats, Tobacco, Lactose products, Clothing, Kids toys etc; Then within each, there is a monthly categorization. Once a family nucleus (up to 4 people) purchases its allowed portion (ex: 12 eggs a month) they would have to wait until the following month to be allowed to acquire such product once again.
Sugar paradise.
- "Come on, for crying out loud", one of the world biggest sugar producer, now only produces about 10% of what it used to priory to 1959. More than 7 million tons of sugar was yearly produced by the end of 1958. Today, its output is estimated at 1.7 million tons. Most of the 160+ sugar mills existing to priory to 1959 are out of commission. Needless to say, its employees, farmers and others who depended on that industry were left jobless, and to top it all off, hungry as well.
Your son and daughter turned 8?
Oh sorry… no more milk until they turn 65 or get reeaaaally sick.

Now, you would think: -"well if they have everything then it is not that rationed". And I say -Wrong again! That has never been the case. For example, meat, it is something only a few have had the luck of even seen. Milk is only allowed to be purchased for children under the age of 7.
To give you a perspective of the disaster that Castro's regime has caused in its almost half of century; By 1958, Cuba was among the first countries in world in meat and cow derivatives consumption per person. Now it is at an all-time low. Cubans meat and lactose consumption is placed among the last of the list of today's third world countries.
Lola!!! Do we take a bath this month or we wash our cloths?
I know, I know… I will explain. SOAP is a luxury article. This Rationing marvel, says you can buy a personal Soap Bar every two months and a washing Soap Bar every two months (Per house) but they both cannot be bought during the same month. Yeap… choose… shower or clean shirt.
-Daddy... I want a little toy car… -Hum, Pepito, I am almost done with the raft, then we'll go to the beach and soon you'll have a toy car and perhaps, even a piece of steak!
Toys are not an exception. In fact they are a rarer article. I remember, on "Children's Day" (sometime in January), the day we were allowed to buy toys if there were any.
But wait! Not any toy; It was 1 toy out of the ones left available at the store assigned to your area… Example: a YoYo, a set of Marbels, wooden ball & cup, classic Cuban wooden spinning top, classic stick horse, jumping cords or such. Usually the lines in front of the store are a few blocks long (1 block averages 100 meters) and lasting for days and nights before the arrival of the merchandise. First come, first serve is the name of the game, and…. they-ran-out-fast…. too fast. Luckily we shared a lot on my block.
-A Straw…what? -Strawberry… repeat: Straw---ber---ry.
Sounds strange? Well, let me tell you. Fruits such as Strawberries are grown in some areas of Cuba, usually the colder and higher. However, 99.9% of Cubans have never seen it. Why? They are grown for Tourists and high government officials including… you guessed right… "The Dictator in Chief". Fruits such as Bananas, Pineapples, Watermelons, Oranges etc, only come about a few times a year to the "Roots and Fruits store (Puestos). And, of course, in limited quantities and only a few pounds are allowed, if you hurry enough.
Most nuts, such as Walnuts, Almonds, Pistachios, Pecan, Macadamia etc are totally unknown to the general population.
-Finally, I can buy me a set of underwear.
Surprised? Why, didn't I tell you everything is rationed? Underwear sets are also part of the articles that Castro believes you should not have the right of getting more than 1 time per year. That same principle applies for other clothing articles such as socks, shirts, shoes etc. I want to point out before I continue that quality-wise… IT IS THE WORSE MONEY CAN BUY!
-Honey… I shrunk the kids!!!
-Oh no sweetheart, it was not you, it was Castro and his revolution.

As a result of this ridiculous practice, by the 1990, the Cubans began showing signs of extreme disnutrition. Deficiency in Vitamins A and B caused more than 60,000 "ordinary Cubans" to suffer ophthalmic illnesses such as what is commonly called "Beri Beri" resulting in blindness to say the least.
I can continue naming situations and other examples about this clever rationing system, but I hope by now you have already gotten the point.
What I have NOT told you yet is that only the ordinary, the every-day, the common, the simple, Cubans, are the ones forced to live by these rules. Yes, Castro and his family would not know what it feels like to go to buy milk, stand in line for 3 hours until you hear it ran out just before it is your turn; He and his louts would not know what it is like to share half of chicken among 4 people and make it last 1 week or more. Furthermore, he has multiple residences, scattered around his property, which some people even call it CUBA, with readily available food of any kind waiting for his arrival, regardless if he does.
See next a picture from a video taken of him at his house, sitting at the dinner table, enjoying a wonderful feast, wine included, WINE INCLUDED!!! Ask around to see how many people in Cuba know even how to spell W I N E.
AND please, please… please, do not blame the "Embargo" or the so called "Blockade"…. If Cuba had such Blockade, then Hotels would not have every item existing in the most exquisite restaurant in New York or Paris. By the way, NO Cubans are allowed at Hotels… and that is called… umm… ohh.. APPARTHAID!!!
Now… ladies and gentlemen, that is a glance of The Revolution.

By M.G. October 12th, 2007.

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