Bernie Sanders has given us a peek into his worldview. It goes something like this: Hitler built great highways. Mussolini made the trains run on time. And Fidel Castro educated the illiterates of Cuba.
What a disgusting spectacle it was, watching this presidential candidate pay media homage to the leading mass murderer in the history of this hemisphere! Anybody like me, who fell deeply in love with the whole Castro setup and had remained in that state of glowing admiration for almost two weeks – by which time the regime's bloodthirsty nature was revealed in the thousands of executions by firing squad after a 10-minute trial, or no trial at all! – had to feel like a bully was opening old wounds, which hurt just as much now as they did originally when Fidel and Ché Guevara were taking such delight in Castro's "revolutionary justice."
The Castro regime, when questioned about those reckless firing squads, replied "We don't execute according to old-fashioned law. We execute according to revolutionary justice."
Advertisement - story continues below
That quote is really an almost diplomatic version of the Castro regime's policy on its elimination of any real or potential opposition. What Ché Guevara actually said was, "To send men to the firing squad, judicial proof is unnecessary. These procedures are an archaic bourgeois detail. This is a revolution. And a revolutionary must become a cold killing machine motivated by pure hate."
I was one of those naive young journalists who thought Fidel would bring democracy to Cuba and then, in the style of Simón Bolivar, go about liberating and bringing democracy to all the nations of Latin America. The betrayal of trust like ours still hurts. To hear Bernie Sanders casually talking about the wonderful deeds Castro brought to Cuba was sickening and acutely disgraceful.
I do want to thank Sanders, however, for brandishing his political views rather than concealing them. Prior to Sanders, we might suspect someone of harboring radical views, but proving it was arduous and most often not worth the effort. With Bernie Sanders talking about the marvels of socialism currently enriching the populations of Venezuela, Nicaragua, Cuba and all the others who ought to fall to their knees in gratitude for the benefits socialism has bestowed upon them, Bernie and his enablers in the mass media reveal themselves to be formidable foes of the American way.
Take an undeniable fact in the argument about socialism. Socialism has been tried in at least 39 different countries, and has been an utterly dreadful failure in every single one. Get it here while it's short and hot. You'll never get that fact from the mass media.
Advertisement - story continues below
Here's a strange one for you. The most effective political propaganda of all was never even intended to be political propaganda. The movie "The Godfather Part II" gave all Americans the indelible impression that Cuba prior to Castro was one big brothel surrounded by casinos, all under the watchful eye of Cuban "dictator" Fulgencio Batista. Yes, Cuba provided all sorts of "entertainment" for American thrill-seekers, but how about a fair hearing for the other side?
The Cuban standard of living, now a typical Communist train wreck, was, in those days of Batista, equal to that of many countries in Western Europe. The Cuban peso traded on par with the American dollar. As for Batista being a dictator, it is a rare dictator indeed who allows a Cuban judge to throw a case out of court when he felt it had no merit. That's how Castro "beat the rap" when charges from one of his attempts to overthrow Batista's government were rejected by Judge Manuel Urrutia!
I have personally not been the same since Bernie Sanders began mocking people like me who simply know too much and care too much about this lovely island nation that has gone from fragrant prosperity all the way down to poverty and putrefaction. And all to the merry tune of ideologues like Sanders spouting their wretched ideology!
If Cuba is granted a liberation, we can't have a Nuremberg-style trial, for many obvious reasons. So what? As a friend and admirer of the 1950s Cuba, all I want from Bernie is a one-hour question-and-answer session to try to find out if he really believes the Cuban people are better off under Castro than they were under Batista.
Meanwhile, "Thanks again, Bernie!" for providing us Americans with a mirror we cannot duck or dodge, which tells us how miserably deteriorated we have become in our perceptions.