In the course of next week, Correos de Cuba will put on sale in all its units and newsstands, the Constitution of the Republic of Cuba that was approved in the Second Ordinary Session of the IX Legislature of the National Assembly of People’s Power, at the price of one peso in national currency. Correos […]
Time Does Not Devour Redeemers
Living statue of the strongest metal,
The monsters of gold and silt who could not
Kill you with bullet and poison,
Want time to condemn you to death.
They count your hours, are encouraged by seeing
your beard gone white on your Greek profile;
And on the high summit of serene thinking
The outbreak of your gray hair amuses them.
The peoples, however, give you roses,
poems and songs; more for the dreams
you made come true than for your birthdays.
Because the age of the heroes and geniuses
is not measured by days or years,
But for long centuries and millennia.
Jesús Orta Ruiz, “El Indio Naborí”
(Written in 1996, for Fidel’s 70th Birthday)
A CubaNews translation.
Edited by Walter Lippmann.
El tiempo no devora redentores
Estatua viva del metal más fuerte,
no pudiendo los monstruos de oro y cieno
matarte con la bala y el veneno,
quieren que el tiempo te condene a muerte.
Cuentan tus horas, les anima verte
blanca la barba de perfil heleno;
y en la alta cumbre del pensar sereno
el brote de tus canas les divierte.
Los pueblos, sin embargo, te dan rosas,
poemas y canciones más por cosas
de cumplesueños que de cumpleaños,
pues la edad de los héroes y los genios
no se mide por días ni por años
sino por largos siglos y milenios.
Jesús Orta Ruiz, “El Indio Naborí”
(Escrito en 1996, con motivo de
los 70 años de Fidel)
By Telma Luzzani
A CubaNews translation.
Edited by Walter Lippmann.
Cuban academic Néstor García Iturbe assured us of this based on the campaign promises of the president-elect, but also because he believes that it is in the interest of both countries to keep what has been achieved and to advance further. With optimism, he believes that now that Congress is in Republican hands one of the first steps Trump will take will be to lift the blockade.
The diplomat who holds a PhD in History from the University of Havana is confident that Donald Trump and President Raul Castro will find common ground for agreement.
“I believe that the policies of the Republican President will be not only more beneficial for the United States but also for Cuba. He promised measures that would limit US interference in other countries,” recalled García Iturbe.
He also thinks that Trump will lift the economic blockade against the island because: “there are many American companies eager to do business.”
Anyway, the Cuban government scheduled military exercises as a kind of message to the White House. “The periods of transition between two US administrations are often dangerous: if there is aggression or military action by the US, neither the outgoing nor the incoming president is really in charge; one, because he is leaving office and the other because he has not taken office yet.” García Iturbe calls this period the “limbo of power”. Our message is: If there is a problem we are ready to take action. However, I believe that Venezuela and Syria are in greater danger. “In this “limbo”, there could be a new attempt to overthrow President Nicolás Maduro,” he said.
On the other hand, Mexican journalist Cecilia González looked at some of the hundreds of referenda which were voted on Tuesday in different US states: legalization of marijuana, the death penalty, solar energy and slavery. “In many cases, the results were surprising,” she said. González also referred to the “infinite sadness” that Mexicans feel outside and within the United States because the Republican candidate´s discourse exacerbating rejection of Mexicans, “promoting a culture of contempt and hatred.”
Comparative media analysis discussed the coverage by the Los Angeles Times, the only newspaper to publish a poll which projected Donald Trump a winner, although the paper, as most, supported Hillary Clinton and The Washington Post where media expert Margaret Sullivan criticized the press (including the newspaper where she works) under the title “The Media Did Not Want to Believe that Trump Could Win and Therefore Looked the Other Way.” Journalists with university degrees, urban dwellers, and mostly progressive, usually live and work in New York and Washington DC or on the West Coast. And although they would cover other cities in the country, and talk to miners and the unemployed, they did not take them enough into account.
The program also reported on the suicide bombing against a German consulate in the Afghan city of Mazar i Sharif, which left at least four people dead and hundreds wounded; it also reported on the statement of the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights that denounced the case of the missing students of Ayotzinapa (Mexico) which still has more than 200 loose ends due to failures of the official research.
Por Telma Luzzani
Opinión: “Con Trump no va a haber marcha atrás en la relación entre EEUU y Cuba”
Voces del Mundo
15:14 11.11.2016(actualizada a las 15:17 11.11.2016) URL corto
Lo aseguró el académico cubano Néstor García Iturbe basado en las promesas de campaña del presidente electo pero también porque considera que interesa a ambos países mantener lo logrado y avanzar más. Con optimismo, cree que ahora que el Congreso está en manos republicanas una de las primeras medidas que tomará Trump será levantar el bloqueo.
El diplomático y Doctor en Historia por la Universidad de La Habana confía en que Donald Trump y el presidente Raúl Castro se van a poner de acuerdo.
“Creo que las políticas del republicano van a ser no sólo más beneficiosas para Estados Unidos sino también para Cuba. Él prometió medidas que limiten la injerencia norteamericana en otros países”, recordó García Iturbe.
También piensa que va a levantar el bloqueo económico contra la isla ya que “hay muchas empresas norteamericanas deseosas de hacer negocios”.
De todas formas, el gobierno cubano programó ejercicios militares como una forma de mensaje a la Casa Blanca. “Los períodos de transición entre dos gobiernos norteamericanos suelen ser peligrosos: si hay una agresión o una acción militar por parte de EEUU el presidente saliente no se hace cargo porque se está yendo y el entrante tampoco porque cree que todavía no le corresponde.” García Iturbe llama esto el “limbo de poder”. “Nuestro mensaje es: si hay algún problema nosotros estamos listos para intervenir. Aunque en este momento yo creo que los que están en más peligro son Venezuela y Siria. En este “limbo”, podría haber algún nuevo intento de derrocar al presidente Nicolás Maduro”, aseguró.
Por otra parte, la periodista mexicana Cecilia González analizó algunos de las centenas de referéndum que se votaron el martes en distintos estados norteamericanos: legalización de marihuana, la pena de muerte, energía solar y esclavitud. “En muchos casos los resultados fueron sorprendentes”, afirmó. González relató además la “tristeza infinita” que sienten los mexicanos fuera y dentro de Estados Unidos porque el discurso del republicano exacerbó el rechazo hacia ellos, “instalando una cultura del desprecio y del odio”.
En comparación de medios se analizó la cobertura de Los Angeles Times, el único diario que publicó una encuesta que daba ganador a Donald Trump aunque como la mayoría apoyó a Hillary Clinton, y The Washington Post donde la experta en medios, Margaret Sullivan, criticó a la prensa (incluyendo el diario donde trabaja) con el título de “Los medios no querían creer que Trump podía ganar y entonces miraron para otro lado”. Los periodistas con títulos universitarios, urbanos y en su mayoría progres generalmente viven y trabajan en Nueva York y Washington DC o en la costa oeste. Y aunque vayan a cubrir por unos días otras ciudades del país y hablen con mineros y desocupados, no los toman en cuenta lo suficiente.
En este programa se informó, además, sobre el atentado suicida contra un consulado alemán en la ciudad afgana de Mazar i Sharif que dejó al menos cuatro muertos y centenares de heridos y sobre la declaración de la Comisión Interamericana de Derechos Humanos que denunció que en el caso de los estudiantes desaparecidos de Ayotzinapa (México) hay aún más de 200 cabos sueltos debido a las fallas de investigación oficial.
By Manuel E. Yepe
Esclusive for Mexican daily POR ESTO!
A CubaNews translation.
Edited by Walter Lippmann.
At the onset of the 2016 presidential elections, the elites of the Democratic and Republican parties did not think the issue would be anything but business as usual. The next president of the nation would inevitably have the surname of one of the families who had ruled before: Bush or Clinton; and life in the superpower would continue to be neoliberal capitalist, without changes, as in the last three decades.
But it did not work out that way. It has been consistently shown that, despite the fact that all other elements of power remained the same, the population of the country did not want more of the same. They wanted something new and different in the nation that presumes itself to be a model of democracy for the planet.
Since the previous stage of the process, it became clear that “the oven was not ready for baking” when, within each of the traditional parties, differences were highlighted by unexpected dissent. That made it clear that the phenomenon was not a matter of cosmetic adjustments but of deep surgery. According to the US political qualification patterns, Donald Trump and Bernie Sanders were identified respectively as “the right of the Right” and “the left of the Left”. They had the support of the Republican and Democrat majorities.
Bernie Sanders’ campaign fell victim to the Democratic party machinery. Insensitive to the expressed tendency, it insisted on the figure of Hillary Clinton who later lost in a fight where she represented the discontented past. The alternative was the billionaire, populist and demagogue Donald Trump. He lacked the determined support of the Republican establishment. Togher with many of the main figures of that machine against him, he was elected despite his proven status as racist, sexist, abusive and systematic target of media mockery.
Although in appearance the bipartisan system of Democrats and Republicans survives, Trump’s victory represents a disaster for the system. The direct and populist style of the now President-elect, appealing to the lowest instincts of certain sectors of society –very different from the usual tone of US politicians– gave him a touch of authenticity in the eyes of the most disaffected sector of the right-wing electorate.
The Republican candidate was able to identify the presence of what can be called a “grassroots rebellion” and the growing gap between the political, economic, intellectual and media elites, on the one side, and the foundation of the conservative electorate, on the other. His rhetoric against Washington and Wall Street captivated the less-educated white voters and sectors impoverished by the effects of economic globalization, which benefited the corporations.
Trump went as far as to say that he was not competing against Hillary but against the dishonest media. This confrontation with media power antagonized the journalistic sector but rallied the support of voters exhausted by corporate media outrages.
Better than anyone else, Trump saw the widening gap between the political, economic, intellectual and media elites, and the base of the conservative electorate.
Trump is not a conventional right-winger. He defines himself as “a conservative with common sense”. He does not oppose the political model, but the politicians who have been running it. His speech is emotional and spontaneous; it appeals to people´s instincts, not to their brains or reason. He speaks for that part of the American people where discouragement and discontent have taken root. He addressed people tired of traditional politics and promised to bring honesty to the system and renew names and attitudes.
The media have given a lot of publicity to his most extreme statements and proposals, such as that he would prohibit Muslims from entering the country, expel the 11 million Latin American undocumented immigrants, and build a three thousand kilometer (1864 miles) border wall –whose $20 billion cost would be borne by the government of Mexico– to prevent the entry of Latin American immigrants.
Criticizing the Supreme Court’s decision upholding the constitutional right to same-sex marriage, Trump stated that the marriage of a man and a woman is “the basis of a free society”. He supported so-called “religious freedom¨ laws promoted in several states to deny services to LGBT persons. He said that climate change is a concept “created by and for the Chinese, to make the US manufacturing sector lose competitiveness “.
In truth, it could be said that Trump did not win; instead that it was Hillary Clinton and the Democrats who lost.
November 14, 2016.
Por Manuel E. Yepe
Exclusivo para el diario POR ESTO! de Mérida, México.
En el preámbulo de las elecciones presidenciales 2016, las élites de los partidos demócrata y republicano no pensaban que el asunto sería algo más que el negocio acostumbrado. El próximo presidente de la nación exhibiría, inevitablemente, el apellido de una de las familias que han gobernado antes, Bush o Clinton, y la vida en la superpotencia de América seguiría siendo capitalista neoliberal, sin grandes cambios, como en las últimas tres décadas.
Pero no resultó así. Quedó fehacientemente demostrado que pese a que todos los demás factores del poder se mantenían iguales, la población del país no quiere más de lo mismo. La gente quería algo nuevo y diferente en la nación que presume de ser modelo de democracia para el planeta.
Ya en la etapa previa del proceso se puso de manifiesto que “el horno no estaba para galleticas” cuando en cada uno de los partidos tradicionales se destacaron disidencias inesperadas que hicieron evidente que el fenómeno no era cosa de ajustes cosméticos sino de cirugía profunda. Donald Trump y Bernie Sanders, identificados respectivamente como “la derecha de la derecha” y “la izquierda de la izquierda”, según los patrones de calificación política
estadounidenses, acapararon el apoyo de las mayorías republicanas y demócratas.
La campaña de Bernie Sanders cayó víctima de la maquinaria del partido demócrata que, insensible a la tendencia manifiesta insistió en la figura de Hillary Clinton que más tarde cayó en una pelea en la que ella representaba precisamente el sufrido pasado. La alternativa era el multimillonario, populista y demagogo Donald Trump quien, sin un resuelto apoyo del establishment republicano y con buena parte de las principales figuras de esa formación política en su contra, y resultó electo pese a su demostrada condición de racista, sexista, abusador y blanco sistemático de burlas en los medios.
Aunque en apariencias sobrevive el sistema bipartidista de demócratas y republicanos, la victoria de Trump ha constituido para éste una verdadera hecatombe. El estilo directo y populachero del ahora Presidente electo, apelando a los bajos instintos de ciertos sectores de la sociedad, muy distinto del tono habitual de los políticos estadounidenses, le ha dado un carácter de autenticidad a los ojos del sector más decepcionado del electorado de derecha.
El candidato republicano supo identificar la presencia de lo que puede llamarse una “rebelión de las bases” y la ruptura cada vez mayor entre las élites políticas, económicas, intelectuales y mediáticas, de una parte, y la base del electorado conservador, de la otra. Su discurso contra Washington y Wall Street cautivó a los electores blancos menos cultos y a los sectores empobrecidos por los efectos de la
globalización económica, beneficiosa para las corporaciones. Trump llegó a decir que él no estaba compitiendo contra Hillary sino contra los deshonestos medios de prensa. Este enfrentamiento al poder mediático le enajenó simpatías en el sector periodístico pero de atrajo apoyo de votantes exhaustos de los desmanes de los medios corporativos de comunicación.
Mejor que nadie, Trump percibió la fractura cada vez más amplia entre las élites políticas, económicas, intelectuales y mediáticas, respecto a la base del electorado conservador.
Trump no es un ultraderechista convencional. Él mismo se define como un “conservador con sentido común”. No censura el modelo político en sí, sino a los políticos que lo han estado orientando. Su discurso es emocional y espontáneo. Apela a los instintos, no al cerebro, ni a la razón. Habla para esa parte del pueblo estadounidense en la que ha cundido el desánimo y el descontento. Se dirige a la gente cansada de la política tradicional y promete traer honestidad al sistema y renovar nombres y actitudes.
Los medios han dado mucha difusión a sus declaraciones y propuestas más extremas, como la de que prohibiría la entrada al país de musulmanes y expulsaría a los 11 millones de inmigrantes ilegales latinos y construiría un muro fronterizo de más de tres mil kilómetros para impedir la entrada de inmigrantes latinoamericanos cuyo costo de unos veinte mil millones de dólares correría a cargo del gobierno de México.
Trump ha declarado que el matrimonio de un hombre y una mujer es “la base de una sociedad libre” al criticar la decisión del Tribunal Supremo que considera un derecho constitucional el matrimonio entre personas del mismo sexo; ha apoyado las “leyes de libertad religiosa” impulsadas en varios Estados para denegar servicios a las personas LGTB; ha dicho que el cambio climático es un concepto “creado por y para los chinos, para hacer que el sector manufacturero estadounidense pierda competitividad”.
En verdad, podría decirse que Trump no ganó sino que quienes perdieron fueron Hillary Clinton y los demócratas.
Noviembre 14 de 2016.
A CubaNews translation.
Edited by Walter Lippmann.
In the three interviews that I have done with Aterciopelados in recent years, the Colombian rock duo repeated like a mantra their desire to perform in Cuba. Finally, they will succeed in November when they will lead, together with Chilean rapper Ana Tijoux, the roster of the Patria Grande Festival to be held in Havana and other provinces from 17 to 26 next month. The duo, composed of vocalist and composer Andrea Echeverri and bassist and also composer, Hector Buitrago, will premiere new themes on the island and perform the classics of their repertoire included on the DVD Reluciente, rechinante y aterciopelado (Gleaming, Screechy and Velvety) (2016).
Aterciopelados has a 20 year-plus career, seven studio albums and a handful of songs like “Bolero Falaz” and “Florecita Rockera”, which have become cult themes for their thousands of followers on the Latin scene.
These Colombians, responsible for the expansion of Latin rock on the international stage during the 1990s, will come to Havana after taking part in a historic moment for their country and Latin America. The duo went on stage a few days ago at a concert in Bogota to celebrate the peace agreements between the Government of José Manuel Santos and the FARC-EP.
“It was a great privilege to be part of this historic moment for the country; we were very excited. We all cried, it was emotional, but there was always the specter of what might happen in the plebiscite. Now the question is how to avoid this pitfall; that will be the ultimate test of the dialogue: the real ability to agree among abysmally opposed thoughts,” said Andrea about the triumph of the NO in the plebiscite, in this new interview with Granma, responding by e-mail together with her companion, Héctor Buitrago.
Since its foundation, Aterciopelados has taken sides for the end of the war in Colombia. What did it mean to you to have witnessed the peace agreements?
Andrea: We’ve spent sad and confused days. After being present and excited at the signing of the agreement between the Government and the FARC-EP, the YES lost in the referendum. Without fully understanding the implications of this setback yet, we think that despite the frustration, the conditions for dialogue and peace have been built anyway. The FARC-EP have said that their only weapons will be words, and the government has confirmed that another agreement will be sought that would be agreeable to the majority of Colombians.
Did you think that these agreements would someday materialize?
Andrea: We were really losing hope because the conflict has lasted practically since we were born; there were several attempts and no agreement had been reached. In some way, we became desensitized.
In several of our past interviews you have told me about your interest in playing in Cuba and you will fulfill that wish during the Patria Grande Festival dedicated to great female voices of the region. What are your expectations in those upcoming concerts which, coincidentally, will be held on this historic moment?
Andrea: – We are happy to go to Cuba, happy to accompany female singing, and despite the results, we remain committed to a life project, with an ideology, with a pacifist lyricism of gender, ancestral and ecological.
You’ve just released the CD DVD “Reluciente”. What stage of Aterciopelados does this album summarize?
Hector: It’s a retrospective. It is the celebration of our mileage; it’s like suddenly looking at the past through the eyes of those for whom our songs have been important, and to feel happy, honored, and grateful. And to also feel willing to see it as a new beginning, to continue learning and finding new stuff, errors and bets, wins and losses, risks and creation.
What differences do you perceive between the current Latin scene which gave birth to the band and the present?
Hector: It has grown a lot, the infrastructure, the technical and musical level have greatly improved, which is reflected in the large number and diversity of bands and projects currently on the scene.
Do you feel that Latin rock bands have lost the social activism that, for example, has always characterized Aterciopelados?
Andrea: I think that political militancy should not be imposed. We found it on the road, and it has accompanied us, nurtured us, and strengthened us. But I also feel that it should not be imposed, should not be forced upon; sometimes you want to denounce, criticize, sometimes you’re angry, but sometimes you feel serene and want to dance, sometimes you’re even in love, and you have to write about what you feel and respect that which you are breathing and express it.
In the new album there is the theme “RE”. Can it be seen as a tribute to the eponymous album Café Tacuba?
Hector: Yes it can. The song came up because Ruben himself, the singer of Cafe Tacuba, asked Andrea how Aterciopelados could contribute to the celebration of the 20th anniversary of the “RE” album. So Andrea decided to write that song.
The Duo has always maintained a strong stance in favor of women’s rights. Do you think discrimination against women in Latin America has decreased?
Andrea: I think we have certainly conquered spaces, but there’s still a long way to go. There’s too much inequality, too much patriarchal structure dominating the scene. In fact I think the hyper-sexualization and trivialization of culture (sexualized capitalism, reggaeton, pole-dancing in gyms and, in general, the realm of appearance over substance), has resulted in a setback in some respects. Furthermore, it has strengthened the vision of women as sex objects (a small piece of meat with a barbie-song complex, as we sing in “Oye mujer”), and the impoverishment of the many subtle dimensions of femininity.
What are you working on now after releasing “Reluciente”?
Hector: The idea is to make a new record in 2017. We have material from our solo albums “Conector” and “Ruiseñora”, each in its own house, but the idea is also to compose collectively.
The band has always experimented with rock and the native sounds of Colombia and Latin America. Will you keep that creative spirit in your next albums?
Andrea: The idea is that the high-risk creative spirit is never lost. We have included not only rock and folklore, but also electronics, reggae, disco, blues, music from the Atlantic, music from the Pacific, beach and mountain music; we have even mixed different things in one song, we welcome everything that comes our way, even reggaeton!!! I would love to make anti-reggaeton reggaeton.
El dúo colombiano de rock, Aterciopelados, tocará en Cuba el próximo noviembre
En las tres entrevistas que le he realizado a Aterciopelados en los últimos años, el dúo colombiano de rock ha repetido como un mantra su deseo de tocar en Cuba. Finalmente lo lograrán en noviembre, cuando encabecen junto a la rapera chilena Ana Tijoux el cartel del festival Patria Grande, que se celebrará en La Habana y otras provincias del país del 17 al 26 del próximo mes. El dúo, integrado por la vocalista y compositora Andrea Echeverri y el bajista y el también compositor, Héctor Buitrago, estrenará en la isla nuevos temas y presentará los clásicos de su repertorio agrupados en el DVD, Reluciente, rechinante y aterciopelado ( 2016).
Aterciopelados lleva más de 20 años de carrera, siete discos de estudio y un puñado de canciones como Bolero Falaz y Florecita rockera, que han sido asumidas como un objeto de culto por sus miles de seguidores en la escena latina.
Estos colombianos, responsables de la expansión del rock latino en los escenarios internacionales durante la década de los 90, llegarán a La Habana después de participar en un momento histórico para su país y América Latina. El dúo subió a los escenarios hace pocos días en un concierto en Bogotá para celebrar los acuerdos de paz entre el Gobierno de José Manuel Santos y las FARC-EP.
«Fue un gran privilegio ser parte de este momento histórico para el país, estábamos muy emocionados. Todos lloramos, fue emocionante, aunque siempre estaba el fantasma de lo que podía suceder en el plebiscito. Ahora la pregunta es cómo sortear este escollo, esa será la máxima prueba del diálogo, de la verdadera capacidad de ponerse de acuerdo entre pensamientos abismalmente contrarios, dice Andrea sobre el triunfo del No en el plebiscito en esta nueva entrevista con Granma, respondida vía correo electrónicojuntoa su compañero de ruta, Héctor Buitrago.
—Desde su fundación Aterciopelados ha tomado partido por el fin de la guerra en Colombia. ¿Qué significado le otorgan al hecho de haber sido testigos de los acuerdos de paz?
Andrea:—Hemos pasado días tristes y confusos. Luego de estar presentes y emocionados en la firma del acuerdo entre el gobierno y las FARC-EP, perdió el Sí en el plebiscito. Sin entender a cabalidad todavía las repercusiones de este revés, pensamos que de todas maneras, a pesar de la frustración, las condiciones para el diálogo y la paz han sido construidas. Las FARC-EP han dicho que su única arma serán las palabras, y el gobierno ha afirmado que se buscará otro acuerdo con el que la mayoría de los colombianos esté de acuerdo.
—¿Pensaron que estos acuerdos se concretarían algún día?
Andrea:—Realmente íbamos perdiendo la esperanza porque el conflicto ha durado prácticamente desde que nacimos, hubo varios intentos y no se había logrado concretar algún acuerdo. De alguna manera nos insensibilizamos.
—En varias entrevistas que hemos realizado me han hablado de su interés en tocar en Cuba y ya podrán cumplir ese deseo durante el festival Patria Grande dedicado a grandes voces femeninas de la región. ¿Qué esperan de esos próximos conciertos que casualmente se celebrarán en este momento histórico?
Andrea:— Estamos felices de ir a Cuba, felices de acompañar cantos femeninos, y a pesar de los resultados, seguimos comprometidos con un proyecto de vida, con una ideología, con un lirismo pacifista, de género, ancestral y ecológico.
—Acaban de estrenar su CD DVD Reluciente. ¿Qué etapa de Aterciopelados resume este material?
Héctor:—Es una retrospectiva. Es la celebración del kilometraje, es de pronto mirar al pasado con los ojos de aquellos para los que han sido importantes nuestras canciones, y sentirse feliz, honrado, agradecido. Y sentirse también con ganas de que sea un nuevo comienzo, que siga el aprendizaje y los hallazgos, los errores y las apuestas, los triunfos y las derrotas, los riesgos y la creación.
—¿Qué diferencias perciben entre la escena latina que vio nacer a la banda y la actual?
Héctor:—Ha crecido mucho, la infraestructura, el nivel técnico y musical han mejorado bastante, eso se ve reflejado en la gran cantidad y diversidad de bandas y proyectos que se mueven en la escena.
—¿Sienten que los grupos latinos de rock han perdido la militancia social que, por ejemplo, ha caracterizado siempre a Aterciopelados?
Andrea:—Creo que la militancia no se debe imponer. Nosotros la encontramos en el camino, y nos ha acompañado, nos ha nutrido, nos ha fortalecido. Pero también siento que no se debe imponer, no se debe forzar, a veces quieres denunciar, criticar, a veces estás furioso, pero a veces estás sereno y con ganas de bailar, a veces hasta enamorado, y hay que escribir sobre lo que se siente, respetar eso que se respira, expresarlo.
—En el nuevo material aparece el tema Re ¿Se puede considerar un homenaje al álbum homónimo de Café Tacuba?
Héctor:—Si así es, la canción surgió porque el mismo Rubén, cantante de Cafe Tacvba hablando con Andrea le preguntó cómo Aterciopelados podría aportar a la celebración del aniversario 20 del disco RE. Así es que Andrea decidió escribir esta canción
—El dúo siempre ha mantenido una fuerte postura a favor de los derechos de la mujer ¿Creen que ha disminuido la discriminación contra las mujeres en Hispanoamérica?
Andrea:—Creo que sin duda hemos conquistado espacios, pero todavía falta mucho camino por recorrer. Hay demasiada desigualdad, demasiada estructura patriarcal dominando el panorama. De hecho creo que la hipersexualización y banalización de la cultura (capitalismo sexualizado, reguetón, pole dancing en los gimnasios y en general el reino de la apariencia sobre la esencia) da como resultado un revés en algunos aspectos. Además se ha ido fortaleciendo la visión de la mujer como objeto sexual(pedacito de carne con complejo de barbie-canción, como cantamos en Oye mujer), y el empobrecimiento de las múltiples y sutiles dimensiones de lo femenino.
—¿En qué trabajan ahora después de publicar Reluciente?
Héctor—La idea es hacer un disco nuevo en el 2017. Tenemos material de nuestros discos en solitario Conector y Ruiseñora, cada uno en su casa, pero la idea también es componer en colectivo.
—La banda siempre ha experimentado con el rock y sonidos autóctonos de Colombia y América Latina. ¿Mantendrán ese espíritu creativo en sus próximos discos?
Andrea:—La idea es que el espíritu creativo de alto riesgo no se pierda nunca. Hemos incluido no solo rock y folclore, también electrónica, regue, disco, blues, música del Atlántico, música del Pacífico, música de playa y de montaña, incluso hemos mezclado diferentes cosas en una sola canción, bienvenido todo lo que se atraviese, hasta reguetón!!! Me encantaría hacer reguetón antireguetón.
Revised by Walter Lippmann.
The Swedish Academy, in charge of making the announcement, said it recognized the 75 year-old rock star for “having created new poetic expressions within the great tradition of American song.”
Sara Danius, permanent secretary of the Swedish Academy, told Dylan that “for 54 years he has been inventing himself.”
Blonde on Blonde, his seventh studio album is “an extraordinary example of his brilliant way of rhyming, to gather sayings, his brilliant way of thinking,” said Danius.
Dylan, whose real name is Robert Allen Zimmerman, was born in 1941 and began his musical career in 1959, playing in cafes in Minnesota, USA
But his best known songs are from the 1960s such as Blowin ‘in the Wind and The Times They are A-Changin, some of which became anthems of the civil rights movement turned and against the Vietnam War.
Since June 7, 1988, Dylan has linked one tour with another, so he named his activity in the last three decades as the Never Ending Tour (The tour endless).
Before being honored by the Academy, Dylan already had industry recognition.
“His work remains totally devoid of conventionality, moral sleight or pop pabulum,” wrote Bill Wyman, the former bassist for the Rolling Stones for the American newspaper The New York Times in 2013.
“His lyricism is exquisite. It is demonstrated that its themes are timeless. Few poets have been more influential” he said.
“I’m not the first to suggest it, but it’s time to take the idea seriously. The Nobel Literature Prize is not awarded posthumously and Mr. Dylan is already in his seventies. Alfred Nobel decreed that the prize should go to a writer with “highlights work in an ideal direction”, he continued.
The Nobel Prize for Literature, together with the winners of the other disciplines, will be presented on December 10.
La Academia Sueca, la encargada de hacer el anuncio, dijo que reconoció a la estrella del rock de 75 años por “haber creado nuevas expresiones poéticas dentro de la gran tradición de la canción estadounidense”.
Sara Danius, secretaria permanente de la Academia Sueca, dijo de Dylan que “durante 54 años ha estado inventándose a sí mismo”.
De Blonde on Blonde, su séptimo disco de estudio, es “un extraordinario ejemplo de su brillante manera de rimar, de juntar refranes, de su brillante forma de pensar”, aseguró Danius.
Dylan, cuyo verdadero nombre es Robert Allen Zimmerman, nació en 1941 y comenzó su carrera musical en 1959, tocando en cafeterías de Minnesota, EE.UU.
Pero sus canciones más conocidas son de la década de 1960, como Blowin’ in the Wind y The Times They are A-Changin, algunas de las cuales se volvieron himnos del movimiento por los derechos civiles y contra la guerra de Vietnam.
Desde el 7 de junio de 1988, Dylan ha enlazado una gira con otra, por lo que él mismo bautizó su actividad de las últimas tres décadas como el Never Ending Tour (La gira sin fin).
Reconocimiento de la industria
Antes de ser distinguido por la Academia, Dylan ya contaba con el reconocimiento de la industria.
“Su trabajo se mantiene totalmente carente de convencionalidad, prestidigitación moral o pábulo pop”, escribía Bill Wyman, el exbajista de los Rolling Stones para el diario estadounidense The New York Times en 2013.
“Su lirismo es exquisito. Está demostrado que sus temas son eternos. Pocos poetas habrán sido más influyentes”, explicaba.
“No soy el primero en sugerirlo, pero es hora de tomar la idea en serio. El Premio Nobel de Literatura no se otorga de forma póstuma y el señor Dylan ya está en sus setentas. Alfred Nobel decretó que el premio debía ir a un escritor con “el trabajo más destacado en una dirección ideal”, proseguía.
El Nobel de Literatura, al igual que los ganadores de las otras disciplinas, será entregado el 10 de diciembre.
By Manuel E. Yepe
Exclusive for the daily Por Esto!, of Merida, Mexico
A CubaNews translation.
Edited by Walter Lippmann.
Marijuana is having a good time in the Caribbean. With the exception of Cuba, cannabis is widespread in the insular Caribbean, although it is no longer the “ganja” that came to the Caribbean from India and was used by humble workers in Jamaica to free themselves for a few moments from their cruel jobs.
So says an article published by the Italian magazine TTC (Travel Trade Caribbean), specializing in the tourism industry of the Caribbean region, today threatened by the dangerous presence of this universal scourge.
In 2015, the growth, trade and private possession of up to 200 grams of marijuana by adults and the growing of up to 5 plants for private consumption and medicinal, religious and scientific purposes was decriminalized in Jamaica, as a celebration of Bob Marley’s 70th birthday, the extraordinary Jamaican musician who was addicted to smoking the weed.
According to TTC, the successes of marijuana have gone so far in 2016 that the Bhang Travel Inc., in Miami, Florida, the Cannabis Industries Premiere Travel and Event Agency, launched the first-ever Jamaican Cannabis Cruise setting sail departing from Miami on January 2017 with destination Ocho Rios Port in Jamaica.
Currently, in many parts of the world, the number and influence of marijuana advocates is increasing. They argue for its general decriminalization or at least for its free use in medicine. Also increasing is the number of the detractors of marijuana which is still classified in the world as a class A (High-risk) drug, together with Heroin, Cocaine, Amphetamines and ecstasy (MDMA).
Cautiously, the Caribbean Public Health Agency (CARPHA) recommended to its member countries the need for further research, before accepting new programs to liberate its use. The head of the organization, Dr. James Hospedales, advises “proceed with an abundance of caution.” He emphasizes the immense importance of youth protection.
Two Caribbean nations, US protectorate Puerto Rico and Jamaica, already have a medicinal cannabis program in place and others are taking steps to decriminalize it.
According to an analysis posted in the Internet about Jamaica, “the country is trying to cash in on the multi-billion-dollar health and wellness tourism sector that several Caribbean countries are turning to. But it won’t be the use of cannabis for traditional medicine purposes alone it is contemplating. It is also planning to use products made from the herb that would play a major part in the tourism sector”.
Jamaica´s Minister of Tourism Edmund Bartlett said Jamaica’s lush and rustic southwestern coast is “ideally suited for the concept of “cannabis-infused tourism” where products made from the herb would play a major part in the tourism sector”.
In 2015 the countries that had the least restrictive cannabis laws were Bangladesh, Cambodia, Canada, Chile, Colombia, the Czech Republic, India, Jamaica, Mexico, Portugal, Spain, Costa Rica, Uruguay, Germany, the Netherlands, some U.S. states, Native American Indian reservations, and cities as well as some territories of Australia.
The countries that maintain the strictest cannabis laws are China, Egypt, France, Indonesia, Japan, Malaysia, Nigeria, Norway, the Philippines, Poland, Saudi Arabia, Singapore, South Korea, Thailand, Turkey, Ukraine, the United Arab Emirates and Vietnam.
The global market for a cannabis tourism stands at around US $494 billion, according to the article in TTC.
Although the flow of cocaine heading north has been reduced, violent crime and drug trafficking mean serious threats to Central America and the Caribbean. Given its
geographical location between the main producers of coca in the South and the main consumers of narcotics in the North, the region has become a drug corridor.
October 3, 2016.
Por Manuel E. Yepe
By Manuel E. Yepe
A CubaNews translation.
Edited by Walter Lippmann.
Leonardo Boff, is a Franciscan monk who was one of the main creators of the liberation theology-until he decided in 1992 to leave the priesthood. On August 12, he granted an interview to journalist Martin Granovsky, from the Argentine newspaper Pagina 12, in which he analyzed the course that Brazil and Argentina have taken due to their subordination to transnational capital.
Asked about the reasons for the advance of neo-conservative processes in Latin America –by means of a coup, as in Brazil, or by the ballot box, as in Argentina– Boff linked them to a new cold war that is being waged between the United States and China.
The Asian giant, now part of the BRICS bloc, has been gaining presence in Latin America and this contradicts the US purpose to control the continent. By attacking Brazil, the US attacks China and its huge investments in Latin America that only last year meant $54 billion for the railway that would link the Atlantic with the Pacific.
Latin Americans are frightened by the U.S. negotiations with Argentine president Mauricio Macri regarding two new military bases, one on the border between Brazil, Paraguay and Argentina, and another in Patagonia, near the world’s largest freshwater aquifer, says the leader of liberation theology, who is already 77 years old.
Regarding the coup process in Brazil, Boff reported that the Movimiento Sin Tierra [Landless Movement] has the support of Pope Francisco who got very enthusiastically close to President Dilma Roussef; so much so that she has greeted him on her every trip to Europe.
In one of her trips she was accompanied by the Brazilian actress Leticia Sabatella who gave the Pope a first-hand description of the situation. She let him know that the main issue was defense of democracy, because attacking Dilma would bring violent forms of social repression. After listening to her, the Pope said: “It is the work of capitalism: of Brazilian capitalism and transnational capitalism.”
Boff believes the Pope has seen that neo-liberalism, which gives more value to the market than to the common good for people, produces great marginalization and great poverty. The forty million Brazilians who were rescued from hunger in the country are now begining to return to their previous situation.
“As is known, the deputy who remained as interim president dismissed Dilma´s cabinet and attacked the Ministry of Social Welfare and the agrarian reform. Social projects are increasingly underfunded, attention to culture was scaled down from a ministry to an undersecretary, and Michel Temer cut the subsidies to public universities by half “.
According to Boff, the Pope considered that the parliamentary coup without bayonets seeks the same effect as military coups did before: to reinforce a group of big national capitalists together with transnational capitalists aimed at a greater accumulation of capital by privatizing national assets.
There is a project to recolonize Latin America and increasingly turn it into an area that only exports pure raw materials without adding value to its products. Brazil itself has more than 70 million hectares to produce and satisfy hunger worldwide, and has more than enough water, said Boff.
“Everything would fall under the control of the privatized or internationalized capital. The Pope is aware of this phenomenon and of the fact that the poor would return to misery and hunger.”
In Argentina, the state caries out a policy of privatization. It talks to the companies. There is no society but individuals. Wealth accumulation is concentrated in a shrinking group. You cannot analyze the situation in Argentina or Brazil separately or assess the attempt by the United States to align the two countries within the imperial strategy in isolation, Boff said.
“In the 13 years when the Workers Party (PT) in power, it was shown that there are two projects at stake. The two want to be democratic, but neo-liberal democracy is for the few and makes rich policies for the rich and poor policies for the poor.”
Boff recalled that there are 210 million people in Brazil and 71,440 superrich who control more than half of the gross domestic product. The World Bank has said that the greatest accumulation of capital in the world is in Brazil, where the most anti-popular and anti-social capitalists reside. They keep much of their fortunes abroad in tax havens and operate through offshore companies. This is definitely an example of the two types of democracy.
The other type of democracy, that of Lula in Brazil, is the inclusive democracy, open to all. The global correlation of forces makes it impossible to prevent the accumulation of capital. But at least we can put some limit to it. In his interview with the Argentine newspaper Pagina 12, Leonardo Boff concluded, “We must do it.
August 22, 2016.
By Manuel E. Yepe
A CubaNews translation.
Edited by Walter Lippmann.
The main utility of presidential elections in the US is simply that it’s a weapon of mass distraction –creating a fiction that presidents actually rule and that voters actually determine the country’s destiny.
In truth, presidents and their minions in Congress and the Supreme Court may govern, but they certainly don’t rule. Elections serve to transfer power from one set of elites to another set of elites, cloaking the spectacle in democratic legitimacy, as the ruling class watch from their corporate suites, pleased with the quadrennial national consensus-building bread & circus event.
This is how Gerald Sussman, a sociologist and Professor in the Toulan School of Urban Studies and Planning at Portland State University, defines the US electoral system in his essay “American Elections: Weapons of Mass Distraction”.
If Bernie Sanders had managed to capture the largest number of delegates, the nomination, and the election, it simply would have left a democratic socialist in the White House with all the levers of power intact to discipline him back to what Noam Chomsky has called “the spectrum of thinkable thought.”
“Indeed –wrote Sussman– if the ruling class were a bit wiser, they would have backed Bernie instead of Hillary for the nomination and the presidency just to crush the hopes of the left. The real value of the Sanders campaign was to incite courage in young people to confront the establishment. A Clinton victory in November might bring thousands of protesters into the streets, but a Trump victory would probably bring millions.”
The designation, in recent conventions, of two of the presidential candidates most despised by the activists and supporters of their own parties –Democratic and Republican respectively– has placed millions of voters between the proverbial rock and a hard place before the presidential election on November 8th.
They are equally forced to choose between Donald Trump (R) and Hillary Clinton (D), the lesser of two evils.
Driven by the fallacy that democracy consists of choosing between the two options offered by the two-party system (duopoly) there must be many in the United States today who believe that the small number of options offered is to be blamed for this situation, and think a multiplicity of parties would be the solution.
But soon enough they learn of the existence of many countries where there are multiple parties (dozens and even hundreds), and the situation is the same: power always remains in the hands of rich, who govern for the benefit of the rich.
Historically in the US, whenever an upstart candidate has emerged, having somehow managed to infiltrate the system to the point of seriously jeopardizing the duopolistic control of power (as happened with Jesse Jackson in 1988, Ross Perot in 1992, Ralph Nader and Howard Dean in 2004 and to some extent Bernie Sanders in 2016), they have been confronted by the money, the means and the Machiavellian methods of pressure which, in the end, prove insurmountable, although for some time they serve as a distraction for their followers.
As journalist Barbara G. Ellis has noted on the Truthout website, Bernie Sanders became a monumental threat to the Democratic nomination with demonstrations of tens of thousands of potential voters across the country. Volunteers, mostly young people, vastly outnumbered those of Clinton.
Simultaneously, Trump, with his rallies and wins in the primaries, seemed to be in the same situation with respect to the Republican machinery.
Just as anguish and despair become increasingly pressing for the destitute masses in the world and foreshadow an inevitable popular uprising at a global scale, within the US, the contradiction between the 1% that dominates everything and the 99% who can no longer be fooled by the myths and tricks of representative democracy controlled by the rich becomes more acute.
The experience gathered from the ongoing electoral process in the US clearly shows that small cosmetic changes are not enough to make the current system work. Neither new parties or structural changes in the existing ones, nor unstable coalitions will be able to save the system. The problem lies in the unjust nature of the capitalist system itself that, by its current imperialist nature, hinders the democratic development of the nation and oppresses its citizens.
August 16, 2016.
By Manuel E. Yepe
Exclusive for daily POR ESTO! of Mérida, México.
The surprising successes of Bernie Sanders on the left flank and Donald Trump on the right flank –in part, believed to owe something to the new positions of the “white working class” in the US– have sparked new interest within the political outlook of the nation.
So writes Zoltan Zigedy, a prominent American Marxist political commentator in his “ZZ” column.
The Wall Street Journal calls them the “forgotten Americans.” Others see them as racist and xenophobic. In 2008, then-aspiring-President Obama characterized them way: “And it’s not surprising then that they get bitter, they cling to guns or religion or antipathy to people who aren’t like them or anti-immigrant sentiment or anti-trade sentiment as a way to explain their frustration.” Whether they are forgotten, dismissed, or demonized, the “white working class” has been discovered this election season.
Even a decade ago, it was widely believed that there was no working class in the US –only a vast middle class and the poor. Fostered by social scientists, mainstream politicians, and trade union functionaries, the fiction prevailed that, apart from the very rich, everyone was either middle class or poor.
Of course, this illusion began to shatter in the wake of the 2008 crash and the ensuing economic stagnation. Likewise, the rebellion against corporate, cookie-cutter candidates in the 2016 primary contests exposed a class division that fit poorly in the harmonious picture of one big class with insignificant extremes at either end.
Whatever else the 2016 electoral campaigns have revealed, they certainly have shattered the illusion that the US is largely a classless society. But US elites and their opinion-making toadies struggle to find the “white working class,” says Zigedy.
Just as the mass media has fostered caricatures of African-Americans, the media and cultural/entertainment corporations craft an unflattering image of white, working class citizens. Whereas Black people are saddled with images of violence, idleness, promiscuity, and criminality, white workers are portrayed as bigoted, socially, culturally and intellectually backward, superstitious, and conservative.
One would never know from the “hood” movies, talk radio hysteria, and the crime-obsessed news anchors, that most African-Americans are a significant part of the working class, maintain stable households, and work diligently for a better life. Similarly, most white workers are neither gun fanatics nor Bible-thumpers. Most white workers do not attack gays, abuse their spouses and children, torch mosques or lynch Black people.
According to Zigedy, the common perception dished out by the mass media is that white workers constitute the electoral base for Donald Trump, when the truth is that the median household income for his primary voters shows that Trump’s followers are more typical of the white petty-bourgeoisie than the white working class.
Certainly media elites, pundits, and politicians do not want to talk about the latent rebelliousness of the white working class. There is a large majority of white workers who believe that the country is heading in the wrong direction. This is an opinion that should not surprise anyone since the median household income in the US has declined by 7% since 2000.
The current crisis of political credibility shows that they, like most of the rest of the population, have yet to find a way out.
Social scientists have begun to acknowledge the toll that corporate pillage has taken on the working class, very dramatically of late in the case of the white working class.
Death rates, especially from alcoholism, drug abuse, and suicide have risen sharply among white workers. The institutions that formerly traded a measure of privilege to white workers for their compliance and docility have now abandoned them.
According to Zigedy, the Democratic Party, for example, is so thoroughly corrupted by corporate money that when a benefit or privilege is wiped out linked to interracial prejudice, false friends and bombastic demagogues, enemies of the working class, take the opportunity and use it to mask the identity of the common enemy and thus weaken the unity in the ranks of U.S. workers.
August 13, 2016.
A CubaNews translation. Edited by Walter Lippmann.
By Manuel E. Yepe
Exclusive for daily POR ESTO! of Merida, Mexico.
A CubaNews translation.
Edited by Walter Lippmann.
Today increasingly-substantial financial resources are being invested in the creation of new technologies of war and weapons of mass destruction, though there isn’t the least defensive justification for it in the conditions of the post-Cold War world.
Europe, which benefited so much from the conquest and colonization of America, Africa and Asia, has been responsible for dragging the world into two global wars. The so-called old continent should have made a supreme effort to avoid catastrophes like those in the former Socialist Republic of Yugoslavia, Afghanistan, Iraq, Libya and Syria, as well as the criminal extermination actions which for many years have been perpetrated by the Zionist forces against the martyred Palestinian people, to mention only the bloodiest.
Only 19 years elapsed between the first and second world wars. World War II ended 71 years ago. However, since then there have been conflicts and wars that have employed several times more explosives and chemical weapons than both world wars together.
The policy of allocating more massive budgets for war and lowering taxes for the more powerful contributors means less money for social expenditures. This does not affect the entire US population equally. Neo-liberal practices, together with globalization, ensure that the rich continue to increase their wealth while the poor continue to grow in number and become increasingly poorer.
In the United States, federal programs for education, community development, grants to agencies for environmental protection, financing for development, low-cost alternative energy, disease control, drug abuse treatment, health and occupational security management, as well as public safety are reduced or eliminated; this list includes only the most recently and hardest hit areas.
The United States presents the paradox of being the richest country in the world
and at the same time it has one of the highest indices of poverty among developed countries. The US currently has, proportionally, the largest number of poor people without health insurance, yet with insecurity and food deficiency among the rich countries.
These sad social realities for the people of the United States, caused by imperialist wars in terms of soldier casualties and injuries, cannot compare, however, with the enormous damage that these disproportionate wars have meant for the attacked peoples.
The farcical excuses presented by the United States, first, to justify the occupation and, then, to save face in view of the evidence of a lost war, have been grotesque.
This happens when Washington cannot find a way out of the attacked countries without obtaining substantial economic benefits for the transnational monopolies that were the real reason for the aggression in the first place.
The noble aspiration of mankind to make the twenty-first century the first in history without wars died early. Against the accumulation of hardships, atrocities, cruelties and sacrifices that characterize the reality of war, the struggle of humanity for peace becomes a vital necessity.
Humanity today has sufficient culture and experience to reject the notion that peace must be imposed by war. Peace can and must be a conscious objective of human intelligence and solidarity.
It has been said many times that the people of the United States are the only ones who can carry out the titanic feat of bringing down the most powerful and bloodthirsty empire ever known to humanity. Today, humanity anxiously waiting to see that people react to give it the solidarity it deserves!
These days, people around the world have been able to follow, sometimes with disgust, the process of elections that every four years takes place in the United States.
On this occasion, however, new and striking manifestations of the profound crisis that engulfs the political system of the only superpower of this era have become apparent.
The campaign of the Republican candidate Donald Trump has allowed everyone to see, in all its crudeness, the terrible fascist danger that looms over humanity. By contrast, the Democratic Party candidate, Bernard Sanders, had encouraging messages that had never before been heard from within the highest echelons of imperialist politics.
July 28, 2016.