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A Cuban-American Republican youth who likes Rubio, not the embargo's "insanity."

@MarcACaputo

Every now and then, amid all the spam and junk from angry partisans and lunatics, there comes a thoughtful email from a reader that makes a reporter just happy he's doing his job. So I reached out to the sender (a 23-year-old Miami Republican who votes the party line) and decided to just post his study and his entire note (plus my added hypertext) below:

My name is Andrew N. Estevez, I just graduated in 2013 from the University of Miami with a Master's in International Business Administration. Your article on the front pages of the Friday Herald really struck a chord with me; not only because I am born of Cuban parents and have a Venezuelan girlfriend who passionately participates in all the Miami rallies for change in Venezuela, but also because, in my final semester at UM, I wrote a research paper analyzing the ineffectiveness of the United States' embargo on Cuba.

My paper is entitled Insanity. On the second page there is a quote from Albert Einstein that reads:
"Insanity - doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results."

Now, I am writing to you because this is an issue I have hoped would come back into foreign policy discussions, in the hopes that politicians re-access their approach to collapsing communist regimes. After hearing Senator Rubio's speech and reading your article, I commend him proposing the creative idea of placing sanctions on the individuals within the Venezuelan government who are profiting from corruption, and the plight forced onto the Venezuelan people by their (communist parading as democratic) government. Chavez took every page out of Fidel's book, and destroyed the country just enough to make the people dependent on the government for day-to-day necessities.

Senator Rubio has presented a sophisticated strategy that addresses the flaws in our Cuban policy created half a century ago. Our economic embargo only led the Castro regime to strengthen ties with other tyrants around the globe. Prohibiting our trade did not stop them from trading with the rest of the world, it was only effective in restricting us from smoking nice Cuban cigars. Much worse, our policy gave Castro the fuel he needed to convince the citizens that their horrible living conditions are the result of the US embargo; when actually they have more than enough access to resources that could provide their citizens with the freedom they deserve.

In my paper I also address how the Obama administration has become totally lax on the embargo restrictions. Last year over $250,000,000 went to Cuba from the U.S. through trade and remittances - at this point the embargo hardly exists. Sec. of State Kerry said in his OAS speech that our citizens are the best ambassadors we have for inspiring change in Cuba. In a time where policy is so meekly defined, he is probably right. If we send more Americans who carry our culture to Cuba we can give the people there a taste of what freedom is really like - this will probably fan the flame lit under the Castro regime.

That taste of Impirialismo is what has given the Venezuelan people aspirations for what their country could look like if they eliminated their corrupt government, and gained more economic freedom. Therefore, the Senator is right, economic sanctions (like our policy on Cuba) will be ineffective, as they will only give Maduro a reason to blame us for their dilapidated economy. Sanctions on individuals would be far more effective as it would force officials to seek improvement of their country's economy once they are stuck there and not permitted to come on the weekends to shop in Aventura Mall. Unfortunately, this policy is not helpful at this point in Cuba, because I am sure that Fidel and Raul could care less about losing their Miami shopping privileges.

Thanks again for the great article! I am glad you are giving this issue the spotlight it deserves. I'd be honored to contribute to the Herald in any way on these topics if it would be helpful.

Download Cuba US Relations (1)

Blogger's note: Thank you, Andrew. Your note and study were more helpful than you'll ever know. Keep up the good work.

Comments

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Mrs. Ed Jenkins

Vote for evil - you will get evil results! So, stop partisan voting.

amigay

Andrew, I agree the embargo has been and is ineffective, but I want to point out it was the product of YOUR Cuban compatriots back then and is the product of YOUR Cuban Republicans now who continually and consistently force the issue to leave the embargo in place. I also want to warn you that anything that comes from the mind of Marco Rubio is self-serving and to be taken with a grain of salt.
Lastly, the definition of insanity is spot on, ie: voting Republican.

JSS


Last night, On Mar 1, 2014, at 11:31 PM,
I shared with Andrew (a personal friend)the following text:

> I like what I saw in Caputo's article! I hope I'm at least one Democrat you would consider voting for one day though. Dr. Jeff:-)

His response this morning was the following:

"Thank you Dr. Solomon! No doubt about it!! I'll always vote for the best/most trustworthy candidate... I could care less about the titles!"
You the man!
Thanks & regards, Andrew"

Andrew is not a hyperpartisan wingnut that cant see through political propoganda. This young man is much smarter than that!

Luis

impirialismo - imperialismo - fix this

IslaFire

"a 23-year-old Miami Republican who votes the party line"

Difficult to take somebody seriously who appears to not be able to think for himself. He has some good points too. Unfortunately, he's preaching to a huge choir of people who are for discontinuing the embargo. See above comment reference "YOUR Cuban Republicans".

JSS

IslaFire - Andrew does not vote only the party line. Look at his previous statement on my previous comment. Quoted from him and he had no idea I was posting it... He is a brilliant young man who thinks for himself and he is probably going to be a community leader in years to come.

Joe Atikian

Even the Cuban government's own numbers agree with Andrew on the effects of the embargo. For more depth and an international view go here for paper or a free kindle version http://www.amazon.com/Cuba-Under-Embargo-Macro-Impact/dp/1477445919

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