Mi Papá

The Malecon at sunset. By Diogo Salles.

My father was an ardent anti-Fidelista.

My mother has told me that he never trusted Fidel Castro. He did not celebrate as he overthrew the Batista regime. He always felt that his ascent to power would lead to no good. And this was before Fidel came out as a Communist. (If you’re not hip to Cuban history, Fidel didn’t come out as a Communist until 1961, and was even tacitly supported by the US in his overthrow of Batista, whose regime was no longer tenable.)

And after Fidel began turning Cuba into a one-party state, things got worse for my father. He was firmly ensconced in the middle class. He owned his own barber shop. He was a member of the petit bourgeoisie. And Fidel nationalized everything. Dad lost his shop. Friends were arrested.

My family left Cuba as soon as it could. And my dad always longed for it. But ill-health and a hatred of the Communists always prevented him from going back to visit. I remember that one of the happiest times of his life was when his brother came to New York for a month. Suddenly the years and the distance vanished, and they could pretend to be taking a cafecito at a corner bar.

I don’t know how my dad would have reacted to President Obama’s initiation of normalization of relations with Cuba. His pain may have been too deep. Sometimes the past is not past, but a living gash in your soul.

I am his son, but I cannot speak for him. I would like to think that if there is an afterlife, his pain has left him, and he has granted his blessing.

I can only speak for myself. And as a son who inherited his distaste of the caudillo Fidel, I can say this: the isolation of Cuba has only isolated us.

Every year the UN General Assembly passes a resolution condemning the embargo. The only “no” votes are usually us, Israel, and whatever Micronesian statelet we bribe to join us.

Cuba trades with the rest of the world, although not as much as it could if the embargo were lifted. Our allies look at our obsession with an impoverished island off the Florida Keys with bemusement and not a little disgust.

The embargo was put in place during the Cold War, as a Cold War exercise to blunt Cuban influence in Latin America. The Cold War is over. Latin America is democratic. And Cuba’s adherence to socialism is not winning converts anywhere, not even in Venezuela, its erstwhile ally. The embargo, if it ever had a utility, has long become useless, kept on life support to appease the first generation of exiles, quickly dying out, their children not longing for a return to the island, firmly embroiled in American concerns and American life.

The embargo wasn’t hurting the Communist Party. If anything, it prolonged its life. Fidel and his lieutenants could always point to “el Yanqui” and his imperialism. “Socialismo o muerte” was the rallying cry, and it was effective. Ordinary Cubans didn’t feel that the US was standing up for it; they felt that they were being punished for a geo-political game. And after the fall of the Soviet bloc, even that wasn’t in play, just parochial US politics. If the embargo hadn’t existed, Fidel would have had to create it.

The world’s only superpower shouldn’t keep a crippling embargo on a nation which is desperate to sell us cigars and sugar and rum. A nation which would welcome American tourists as it did in the 1950s. The embargo is no reflection on them, but on us. This last vestige of the superpower standoff serves no one. It doesn’t serve us, making us look like petty despots. And it doesn’t serve Cubans, keeping US investment out of the country.

Conservatives will bray about “freedom”. If democratic government is a litmus test for diplomatic and economic relations, then I eagerly await suspending such relations with China, Saudi Arabia, the Arab emirates, and so on. And for most of the cold war, democratic governance was never a prerequisite for being a US ally.

The old socialist glorifiers of Cuba will see this rapprochement as a betrayal of Cuba, a dastardly plot by the imperialist power to subvert the last socialist state. That state has been seeking normal relations with the US for decades; it’s crying out for some US “subversion”.

In the end, the war has wound down. Both sides are tired of playing to their rabid bases. Cuba will take capitalism. The US will admit that the isolationist strategy was a complete failure. And the land of my father may finally become something of the paradise of his memories. That it never was that paradise is besides the point. History has to restart. And thanks to an American president with vision and compassion, it just might.

116 Responses to “Mi Papá”

  1. 2 Linda
    December 18, 2014 at 12:10 pm

    Jeh Johnson is on Mrs Greenspan’s show.

    Gawd she has got to be the worst interviewer on earth……

  2. December 18, 2014 at 12:10 pm

    Thank you LL. My heart breaks for all those who had to leave their homeland. It’s a pain that never eases no matter how long or how far.

  3. 4 JER
    December 18, 2014 at 12:13 pm

  4. December 18, 2014 at 12:17 pm

    For fifty years, this embargo has made us look like overbearing, self-important, impotent bullies, and nothing less, to most of the rest of the world. Well-said, LL, as usual!

  5. December 18, 2014 at 12:20 pm

    LL, this is simply beautiful, and so informative – your father’s experience in Cuba makes it easier to understand the difficulty in all this for an older, exiled generation. But as you said, “history has to restart”.

    Gorgeous, thank you LL.

  6. 7 MightyPamela
    December 18, 2014 at 12:27 pm


  7. 8 Vicki
    December 18, 2014 at 12:30 pm

    LL I was very moved by this essay. I imagine many Cubanos have a wide diversity of opinions on POTUS’ historic move. I feel for those from your dad’s generation but at the same time I applaud the Presiden’ts move to take us Forward.

    Folks—-long ago movie and TV moguls agreed not to picture much less mock Mohammed.
    Kim Jong Un appears to be demanding that same respect.

    Arapaho—-you are so right in what you said on the previous thread about Sony. I have never seen and will never see Zero Dark Thirty. Free on my HBO or not. Just will not watch a giant LIE about torture working to get us close to Bin Laden.
    The current piece of crap starring Franco and Rogen makes fun of killing a leader of a country. How is that funny???????????????????????

    Ok, I admit I am old and cranky.

    • 9 0388jojothecat
      December 18, 2014 at 12:50 pm

      LL another excellent post.

      When I first heard of “The Interview” I thought another stupid comedy. The plot to kill a living world leader in a gruesome manner is disgusting and it probably would have faded to VOD before the end of year if Sony was not hacked bringing more notoriety than the picture than it warrants. There are far better movies coming out Xmas day than this
      I thought too how would we feel if Sony or some other country made a gruesome comedy about killing PBO? we at TOD would be furious.

      Remember the author that had to go into hiding for Satanic Versus “. Now the US Government is getting involved due to death threats to US citizens over some stupid movie. PBO has asked the do nothing congress to address cyberhacking and these threats to only have them vote 1000 times against the ACA. Companies and our government need to fight people and countries that harbor and commit cyber crimes.

    • 10 arapaho415
      December 18, 2014 at 1:04 pm

      Thank you, Vicki.

      I’m 100% against censorship. When I was in high school and read that D.H. Lawrence and Aldous Huxley were banned, I went out of my way to read them, to find out what the fuss was about. And of course, loved Fahrenheit 451 then too.

      But greenlighting a stupid idea that a successful, gory assassination is funny, cuts to the heart of hubris and depravity, a lack of creativity from which its producers etc., expect to reap boatloads of money.

      These people deserve the consequences of their idiocy.

      • 11 jackiegrumbacher
        December 18, 2014 at 3:29 pm

        Arapaho, this is well put and I agree with you, Vicki and Jojo. Like you, I despise the idea of censorship, but giving the green light to a movie about an assassination of a current world leader was a seriously bad error of judgment. Callow minds at Sony may think that the North Korean leader is an object of fun, but he is not. He holds great power in his country and his potential to do damage is vast. Doesn’t Sony have a legal department that reviews scripts?

  8. 13 ouapiti
    December 18, 2014 at 12:35 pm

    Thank you, LL, for your comments. I found them very informative, insightful and moving — and spot on. Appreciate your sharing your experience.

  9. 14 mophene
    December 18, 2014 at 12:44 pm

    Bravo LL. This is the one of the reasons I love coming to this Blog. Lots of diverse Democratic voices.

  10. 15 FoxfireTX
    December 18, 2014 at 12:44 pm

    Beautiful and informative, LL. Thank you.

  11. 16 arapaho415
    December 18, 2014 at 12:47 pm

    President Obama needles his good friend Deval Patrick (@MassGovernor):

  12. December 18, 2014 at 12:49 pm

    One of your best pieces, LL. I enjoy when you write from the heart.

  13. December 18, 2014 at 12:50 pm

      December 18, 2014 at 2:02 pm


      • December 18, 2014 at 2:11 pm

        Exactly, Sue. Exactly.

      • 24 jackiegrumbacher
        December 18, 2014 at 3:43 pm

        Sue, couldn’t agree more on the ‘greatest president this country will ever see’ part. There are none so blind as those who choose not to see and that is certainly the case among the people in this country who continue to say “I don’t like him” or “he doesn’t lead” and don’t have a single reason for saying so.

    • 25 jackiegrumbacher
      December 18, 2014 at 3:39 pm

      Ylesias gives me a headache. The president won two terms with overwhelming support from American voters. He is in the second half of his second term, a time when presidents traditionally poll poorly. In contrast with other second term presidents, his polls have been extremely respectable and that despite a 24-bombardment of unrelenting anti-Obama propaganda from the GOP controlled media. Oh and despite the fact that he is governing while Black, an unforgivable sin to the nation’s ginned up racists.

  14. 26 donna dem 4 obama
    December 18, 2014 at 12:55 pm

    As the mother and grandmother of twins I found the look on this little boys face to be priceless!!!!!!!!

  15. December 18, 2014 at 12:58 pm

    So what is that Sen. Menendez (NJ) problem? He is on Mrs. Greenspan’s show acting like a dam jackass. For 50 years whatever America were trying to do has been a complete failure, isn’t it time to try something else?

    • 30 Jeff
      December 18, 2014 at 1:01 pm

      we need to ignore so called democrats like Menendez, they are worthless.

      • 31 57andfemale
        December 18, 2014 at 1:18 pm

        Of course, a decent reporter would ask him hard questions as to exactly what action he would take to change the 53-year dynamic into actual results. I long for the good old days when you didn’t show up on national television as a journalist without doing your job.

      • December 18, 2014 at 2:44 pm

        Remember that superficial, backstabbing, A-hole Menendez, tried to derail the Iran nuclear negotiation along with Schumer at the very early stages.

    • 33 Linda
      December 18, 2014 at 1:14 pm

      They are just mad because one of their boogiemen is going away.

    • 34 Vicki
      December 18, 2014 at 1:59 pm

      SEn. Menendez has a long record of Wrongness.

      USA/Iran deal??? Sen. Menendez says “No.”
      Israel/Palestinian peace process?? Sen. Menendez says “No.”
      Immigration EO? Sen. Menendez says “No.”

      Esta hombre is solamente por los ricos.
      In English—Sen. Menedez stands with $$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$.

  16. December 18, 2014 at 12:59 pm

    Thanks for telling your family’s story, LL.

  17. 36 donna dem 4 obama
    December 18, 2014 at 1:01 pm

    “History has to restart. And thanks to an American president with vision and compassion, it just might.”

    Thank you LL. This is so beautifully stated.

  18. 37 57andfemale
    December 18, 2014 at 1:01 pm

    Excellent essay, LL.

    Karl Frisch on Stephanie Miller said this morning that, even though South Vietnam is still dastardly, it was far more dastardly when we first opened relations with them. And it was because of capitalism that some of the horror has been alleviated. This how America used to act and have a positive influence on the world. Not demanding that every country be remade to our internal political requirements, but as a means of offering opportunity as a means of changing regimes. This GOP Congress and all GOP administrations let the Saudis behead their citizens, kill young girls and demand fealty to their religion. Their “capitalism” is that if it makes a profit, then we look the other way. That is not American exceptionalism, but a petty, ugly cynicism that goes against American ideals.

    The way to weaken communism in Cuba is to offer Cubans a better way of life, one barbershop at a time. What can possibly be wrong with that?

  19. 38 yardarm756
    December 18, 2014 at 1:02 pm


    1996 Ebonics The Oakland, California school board unanimously passes a resolution for the incorporating of Ebonics in the classroom.

    1985 The Color Purple premiers.

    1975 Amityville Horror George and Kathleen Lutz purchase their new home at their home at 112 Ocean Avenue. The previous year, 23-year-old Ronald DeFeo murdered his parents, two brothers, and two sisters in the house. Their paranormal experiences in the house were the basis for The Amityville Horror.

    1969 James Bond On Her Majesty’s Secret Service premiers in the U.S., 6th in the James Bond series, it starred George Lazenby as 007.

    1936 First giant panda in the U.S Su-Lin arrives in San Francisco from China. Source: Famous First Facts

    1935 $100,000 Bill These gold certificates are first printed. They featured a portrait of Woodrow Wilson. They were never circulated but used internally by the Federal Reserve. Source: Famous First Facts

    1917 Prohibition The 18th amendment prohibiting intoxicating liquors in the U.S. is sent to the states for ratification. It was in effect from 1920 to 1933.

    1878 Incandescent Light Joseph Swan demonstrates his carbon filament electric light, almost a year before Edison.

    1865 13th Amendment goes into effect abolishing slavery in the U.S.

    1796 First Sunday newspaper The Monitor of Baltimore, Maryland is published.

    1787 New Jersey becomes the 3rd state.


    1980 Christina Aguilera American Grammy-winning singer. TV: Mickey Mouse Club (1993-94). Music: Reflection (1998)

    1950 Leonard Maltin American film critic, historian. TV: Entertainment Tonight. At age 15, he founded Film Fan Monthly.

    1947 Steven Spielberg American Oscar-winning director. Film: Jaws (1975), Close Encounters of the Third Kind (1977), E.T. (1982), Jurassic Park (1993), and Schindler’s List (1994, Oscar).

    1943 Keith Richards British guitarist, with the Rolling Stones.

    1927 Ramsey Clark American lawyer, U.S. Attorney General (1967-89). In 2005, he joined the legal team defending Saddam Hussein.

    1917 Ossie Davis d. 2005 (Raiford Chatman Davis), American actor, civil rights activist. TV: B.L. Stryker (Oz Jackson) and Evening Shade (Ponder Blue and narrator).

    1916 Betty Grable d. 1973 (Elizabeth Ruth Grable), American actress, dancer, pin-up girl. Her legs were insured for $1,000,000 with Lloyds of London.

    1890 Edwin Howard Armstong d. 1954 American electrical engineer, invented the superheterodyne receiver (1918) and FM radio (c1935).

    1886 Ty Cobb d. 1961 (Tyrus Raymond Cobb), American baseball player, “The Georgia Peach.” He was the first person elected to the Baseball Hall of Fame (1936).

    1882 Ralph De Palma d. 1956 Italian-born American Hall of Fame auto racer. With 2,557 wins out 2,889 races, he was the world’s winningest race car driver.

    1856 Joseph John Thomson d. 1940 English physicist. He discovered the electron (1897).

    1779 Joseph Grimaldi d. 1837 English clown, the first to wear clown makeup and a clown suit. The term “Joey,” which is synonymous with the word clown, is from a character he played.

    1707 Charles Wesley d. 1788 English clergyman and hymnist. He helped his brother John establish Methodism and wrote over 6,500 hymns including Hark, the Harold Angels Sing. Source: An Almanac of the Christian Church


    1997 Chris Farley b. 1964 American actor, comedian. TV: Saturday Night Live. Film: Tommy Boy (1995), Beverly Hills Ninja (1997), and Almost Heroes (1998).

    1993 Sam Wanamaker b. 1919 American actor. Film: The Spy Who Came in from the Cold (1965) and Private Benjamin (1980). He is best known for rebuilding London’s famous Globe Theater.

    1992 Mark Goodson b. 1915 American producer. TV: To Tell the Truth, What’s My Line?, The Price Is Right, and Family Feud.

    1977 Cyril Ritchard b. 1898 Australian actor. Stage: Peter Pan (1954, Captain Hook).

    1892 Sir Richard Owen b. 1804 English biologist, paleontologist. He coined the term Dinosaur (1842). He was strongly opposed to Darwinian evolution.

    1869 Louis Moreau Gottschalk b. 1829 American pianist, composer, first internationally recognized U.S. pianist.

    1829 Jean Baptiste Lamarck b. 1744 French naturalist. He was the first to distinguish vertebrates from invertebrates and was one of the first to use the term biology in its modern sense. He is best known for proposing that acquired traits are inheritable (Lamarckism), which was proved wrong, but initiated interest in the idea of evolution.

    1737 Antonio Stradivari b. circa 1644 Italian violin maker, crafted the world’s finest violins.

  20. 39 idon
    December 18, 2014 at 1:20 pm

    Mi Papa a great read. I don’t know anything about the history of Cuba but I am excited to learn more which this wonderful has inspired me to do. Thank you 🙂

  21. 40 Nena20409
    December 18, 2014 at 1:28 pm

    Good Afternoon TOD.
    Au ⭐ for HOPE44. Congratulations.
    Congrats to all the Au ⭐ winners 7 posts back.
    LL……you are a Gem. Excellent post as usual. Thank you.
    Thanks Chips and NW for the last 7 posts. You two are incredible.
    TOD Twitter Brigades, I salute you all 🍸
    TOD Contributors, You all Rock.
    TOD Lurkers, Keep Lurking…… Lady Chips and Co will make it worthwhile forever 😉

  22. 41 Nena20409
    December 18, 2014 at 1:29 pm

  23. 42 Nena20409
    December 18, 2014 at 1:30 pm

    Already in Progress……LIVE…..Josh “The Voice” Earnest at the Podium schooling the WHPC know nothings.



  24. December 18, 2014 at 1:41 pm

    What a moving, insightful and eloquent essay, Liberal Librarian. I have been meaning to thank you for your previous one 12/16, “On Death Cults and the Modern World”, but before I got around to doing so, here you come with another jewel. Your words and your musical curations for the wee hours mean so much to me, and make a difference in the world. Thankful for TOD always, and for your daily presence here as well as your essays.

  25. December 18, 2014 at 1:42 pm

  26. 49 vcprezofan2
    December 18, 2014 at 1:43 pm

    Niiiiiice, Lib_L! Have you ever been to Cuba? Maybe you can act as my interpreter should *we* decide to take a trip in the new year? 😀

  27. 50 Nena20409
    December 18, 2014 at 1:44 pm

    Yep…..POTUS will hold a presser before departing for HI……sweet.

  28. 55 Nena20409
    December 18, 2014 at 1:45 pm

  29. 56 Nena20409
    December 18, 2014 at 1:52 pm

    Okay, I remember now……but I am not going to support a movie on any current leader…..friend or foe being killed. I was not a supporter of the independent movie years back…… killing Bush…..or something. It is wrong, period.

  30. 57 Linda
    December 18, 2014 at 1:53 pm

    Ed Henry just said Sony is an American Company.

    • 58 Linda
      December 18, 2014 at 1:57 pm

      Now he is challenging the number of EO PBO has issued and says that Presidential Memorandum should be counted as EO’s.

      Mark Knoller wants to know why PBO is so stingy issuing pardons.

    • 59 Nena20409
      December 18, 2014 at 2:02 pm

      Sony is a Japanese Company with a subsidiary in USA……
      Ed Henry is a RWNJ at Fox where TRUTH goes and dies.

  31. December 18, 2014 at 1:55 pm

    • 62 GGail
      December 18, 2014 at 3:16 pm

      Hahahahahah! Now I’ll have to tune in tomorrow – just to see “who” speaks the words *Lame duck* first!!! 😀 😀

  32. 63 Nena20409
    December 18, 2014 at 2:00 pm

  33. 64 Linda
    December 18, 2014 at 2:00 pm

    Joy Reid will be interviewing AG Holder today ….

  34. 67 Allison
    December 18, 2014 at 2:04 pm

    • 68 Nena20409
      December 18, 2014 at 2:18 pm

      It’s Pope Francis’ ? Now Hillary Clinton’s?

      Like ACA? Like eliminating OBL? Like the Dow? Crude Oil lower price? Auto Industry? Heck like since Jan 21st, 2009 to Present? You bet!


      Senator Obama has been saying this for years…….while McCain and Hillary Clinton mocked him mercilessly for being Naive and Not understanding Foreign Policy Protocols and Decorum.
      Yep, a Victory has many fathers……..but a defeat is an Orphan made.

      • 69 jacquelineoboomer
        December 18, 2014 at 4:09 pm

        I will add that while both Pres. Obama and Pres. Castro said that the Pope was their partner, lending moral support and encouragement, neither mentioned Hillary. I’m good with that.

  35. 70 Nena20409
    December 18, 2014 at 2:09 pm

  36. December 18, 2014 at 2:17 pm

  37. 73 Nena20409
    December 18, 2014 at 2:23 pm

  38. 76 Nena20409
    December 18, 2014 at 2:29 pm


    It took almost 6 yrs, but eventually, The TRUTH will prevail.

    • 77 Nena20409
      December 18, 2014 at 2:32 pm

      This president said 2014 was Going to be The Year of Action.

      He was Mocked by the Media, GOPers and some Emoprogs.

      Now……Let those who were doubters, mockers Please now Show your Faces and eat Raw Crow.

      December 18, 2014 at 7:45 pm


  39. 79 Dakota
    December 18, 2014 at 2:35 pm

    Wonderful piece L.L. and I love the photo.

    I’ve been speaking of my 94 year old friend who was born in Cuba. She’d been out “carousing” as I playfully call her daily errands and hadn’t heard the news, so I had the pleasure of being the one to tell her. She’s simply over the moon about it. She said she knows that if the Lord sees fit, she will see her homeland once again. Though not a fan of flying, she will “endure” it for Cuba. Her hope is get there before the businesses descend and change things. This is her only regret about the lifting of the embargo.

    She loves our President dearly and because she worked for many years and retired from the City of Chicago, she is full of insights on how and why things get done there. She says he’s easy on the eyes, but Chicago Tough (and brilliant) on the inside!

  40. 80 Linda
    December 18, 2014 at 2:55 pm

    Pat Robinson says that once all those gay people die…we won’t have to worry about gay people anymore…

  41. 84 arapaho415
    December 18, 2014 at 3:16 pm

    Speaker Pelosi’ #TBT tribute to @StephenAtHome.

  42. 85 arapaho415
    December 18, 2014 at 3:18 pm

    Both Rubio and Ros-Lehtinen, Florida Senator and Congresscritter, are vehemently opposed to opening relations with Cuba, but they have no problem taking handouts from China:

  43. 86 daisydem
    December 18, 2014 at 3:19 pm

    Well done LL. So impassioned. I love it. I have a passion about Cuba and I am so happy today. I hope all goes well for Cuba and for the world. I still cannot take it all in. I do know I want to travel there someday. I want to see Cuba. I have only had a glimpse from a cruise ship of the coastline as we passed as close as we could legally. I stood in wondering awe and respect and mystery and wanted to see more. I will never forget it.

  44. 88 Nerdy Wonka
    December 18, 2014 at 3:30 pm

    Fantastic piece, LL.

    I LOVE this administration.

  45. 89 jacquelineoboomer
    December 18, 2014 at 3:44 pm

    LL – That was just a wonderful read. Brought a catch in my throat for a minute there. Thanks for sharing your thoughts, as usual.

  46. 90 Nena20409
    December 18, 2014 at 3:44 pm

    It shall and must be done, prompto.

  47. 96 jacquelineoboomer
    December 18, 2014 at 3:45 pm

    Somebody on Twitter just referred to Hellary Clinton.

    No comment.

    • 97 Vicki
      December 18, 2014 at 3:55 pm

      After the mid-terms I suggested that PBO might not be all that unhappy with the results.
      Nobody on TOD responded either to agree or disagree. We all could see unpleasant struggles ahead.

      Now after a rip-roaring few weeks where even the President’s critics have had to admit that PBO has lots of juice left I wonder if anyone here can see my point of view?

      Which is that the mid-terms demonstrated that Dems who are GOP-lite Lose. Period. Clinton Dems Lose. Another period.
      There is very little love for the Menendez-type AIPAC Dems. Voters stay home unless we give them something to cheer about. Which Steve Israel and company clearly do not intend to do.

      For President Obama this situation of weak to no help from his party may mean he feels free to go for what he has alwways believed in. No more worries about Red State dems for now.

      In 2016, of course I will hope for a Democratic resurgences. Even if right now that seems like a pretty forlorn hope.

      • 98 jacquelineoboomer
        December 18, 2014 at 4:02 pm

        Hadn’t seen your comments before, but they sound good to me …

        … never give up HOPE, especially for 2016! My hope is that RWNJs aren’t in the WH for another 30 years, and that DEMS take back Congress!

        • 99 jackiegrumbacher
          December 18, 2014 at 4:23 pm

          Vicki and JOB, if we give up hope, we will surely lose. so we have to do everything we can to re-energize people and recruit lively, challenging candidates. Dems fell asleep in 2014 and the president is now in the process of waking them up. Even getting the Repubs all revved up to be mad at him is shaking people awake. I want to see lots of Democratic candidates enter the 2016 races at all levels of government and I want to see each of them stretch each other to appeal to the Democratic base and stir people to action. That work begins on January 1, 2015 and it doesn’t end until we achieve JOB’s goal.

  48. 101 Nena20409
    December 18, 2014 at 3:47 pm

    The Reason…….Rubio and Co will be forgotten within 3-6 months on this issue.

  49. 102 donna dem 4 obama
    December 18, 2014 at 3:52 pm

    Funny true story.

    Everyone in my office knows how much I love my President so today one of my co-workers ran over to my office to share a near encounter with our President (we think). She went to dial her husbands job and while multitasking a couple of things at once she inadvertently put in area code 202 (DC #) instead of area code 301 (MD #) when dialing her husband. When the number connected she go a recording that said “you have reached Barack Obama’s personal cell phone. She hung up and dialed the number the same again and got the same recording. Now we aren’t sure if this is someone using PBO’s name (which I don’t think is legal) in their voice mail or the real deal but it sure did create excitement here in my office for a minutes this afternoon. 🙂

    • 103 vcprezofan2
      December 18, 2014 at 4:20 pm

      Hi, GDD! Great bit of excitement, though I think it’s someone being funny. I suspect there wouldn’t be a need to tell those genuinely calling PBO’s personal cell that that’s what it was, and if it was a wrong number they wouldn’t want to alert the caller to the fact it was PBO’s phone.

  50. 104 Nena20409
    December 18, 2014 at 3:57 pm

  51. 105 carolyn
    December 18, 2014 at 3:57 pm

    LL, once again thank you for a beautiful essay. This one was so personal and so beautifully wrought, I loved it. I could see your papa. Your love and respect for him came through so clearly. You were the first person I thought of when I read the announcement…..on here!….and listened to the President. What a day for you and all other Cubanos.

  52. 106 Linda
    December 18, 2014 at 3:58 pm

    Several movie theaters that were planning to show the 2004 comedy “Team America: World Police” because Sony Pictures had bailed on the release of another North Korea-themed movie, “The Interview,” said on Thursday that Paramount Pictures had cancelled their screenings of the puppet movie.


  53. 107 Nena20409
    December 18, 2014 at 3:59 pm

  54. 113 Linda
    December 18, 2014 at 4:13 pm

    The states of Nebraska and Oklahoma filed a federal lawsuit in the U.S. Supreme Court Thursday, claiming that Colorado’s legalization of recreational marijuana is unconstitutional under federal law.

    “Federal law undisputedly prohibits the production and sale of marijuana,” Nebraska Attorney General Jon Bruning said Thursday in a statement. “Colorado has undermined the United States Constitution, and I hope the U.S. Supreme Court will uphold our constitutional principles.”

    But Colorado’s Attorney General John Suthers isn’t backing down and intends to defend the state’s marijuana laws.

    “Because neighboring states have expressed concern about Colorado-grown marijuana coming into their states, we are not entirely surprised by this action,” Suthers said in a statement. “However, it appears the plaintiffs’ primary grievance stems from non-enforcement of federal laws regarding marijuana, as opposed to choices made by the voters of Colorado. We believe this suit is without merit and we will vigorously defend against it in the U.S. Supreme Court.”



    I guess only Red States care about States rights…….Republicans are such frauds.

  55. 114 Nena20409
    December 18, 2014 at 4:21 pm

  56. December 18, 2014 at 4:57 pm

    A fine tribute, LL, to your father, family and Cubans, as well as, a simple statement of the reality of another failed US foreign adventure being brought to a close by President Obama.

  57. 116 amk for obama
    December 18, 2014 at 8:32 pm

    well said, LL. At the end of it all, for an outsider like me, the whole embargo thing looked silly and petty. And of course, the thugs impotently threaten to continue silliness and the pettiness.


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  • Brittney Griner freed as part of prisoner swap
  • 'Wind at My Back' is a story of two unapologetically Black ballerinas
  • Why wasn't Paul Whelan part of Brittney Griner swap?
  • Biden in tweet: Griner is safe. She is on a plane. She is on her way home



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