not the US alone

While the devastation in the US makes the world-news, it is easily overlooked that Imra meant as ravage also for others. But before, another note is worth to be made: While Trump prefers continuing bis aggressive course, others are there to help and

Texas Governor Accepts Aid from Mexico for Hurricane Victims

Now to Cuba – it is interesting also as it shows that the embargo does not even respect humanitarian needs.

Mensaje de Raúl Castro al combativo pueblo de Cuba

Mensaje íntegro del General de Ejército Raúl Castro Ruz, Presidente de los Consejos de Estado y de Ministros de Cuba, sobre la etapa recuperativa en el país tras el paso del huracán Irma.

Llamamiento a nuestro combativo pueblo

El huracán Irma, con su fuerza destructora, arremetió contra nuestra Isla por más de 72 horas, desde la mañana del 8 de septiembre hasta la tarde de este domingo. Con vientos que sobrepasaron en ocasiones los 250 kilómetros por hora, recorrió el norte del país desde Baracoa, castigada también por otro fenómeno de este tipo hace casi un año, hasta las inmediaciones de Cárdenas.

Sin embargo, por la inmensidad de su tamaño prácticamente ningún territorio se libró de sus efectos.

Calificado por los expertos como el mayor huracán formado en el Atlántico, este fenómeno meteorológico causó severos daños al país, los cuales, justamente por su envergadura, aún no se han podido cuantificar. Una mirada preliminar evidencia afectaciones en la vivienda, el sistema electroenergético y la agricultura.

Además golpeó algunos de nuestros principales destinos turísticos, sin embargo las afectaciones serán recupe­radas antes del inicio de la temporada alta. Contamos para ello con los recursos humanos y materiales requeridos, por constituir una de las principales fuentes de ingreso de la economía nacional.

Han sido días duros para nuestro pueblo, que en solo pocas horas ha visto como lo construido con esfuerzo es golpeado por un devastador huracán. Las imágenes de las últimas horas son elocuentes, como también lo es el espíritu de resistencia y victoria de nuestro pueblo que renace con cada adversidad.

En estas difíciles circunstancias ha primado la unidad de los cubanos, la solidaridad entre los vecinos, la disciplina ante las orientaciones emitidas por el Estado Mayor Nacional de la Defensa Civil y los Consejos de Defensa a todos los niveles, la profesionalidad de los especialistas del Instituto de Meteorología, la inmediatez de nuestros medios de comunicación y sus periodistas, el apoyo de las organizaciones de masas, así como la cohesión de los órganos de dirección del Consejo de Defensa Nacional. Mención especial para todas nuestras mujeres, incluyendo las dirigentes del Partido y el Gobierno, que con aplomo y madurez dirigieron y enfrentaron la dura situación.

Las jornadas que se avecinan serán de mucho trabajo, donde volverá a quedar demostrada la fortaleza de los cubanos y la confianza indestructible en su Revolución. No es tiempo para lamentarnos, sino para volver a construir lo que los vientos del huracán Irma intentaron desaparecer.

Con organización, disciplina y la integración de todas nuestras estructuras, saldremos adelante como lo hemos hecho en ocasiones anteriores. Nadie se llame a engaño, la tarea que tenemos por delante es inmensa, pero con un pueblo como el nuestro ganaremos la batalla más importante: la recuperación.

En este momento crucial, la Central de Trabajadores de Cuba y la Asociación Nacional de Agricultores Pequeños, junto a las demás organizaciones de masas, deberán redoblar sus esfuerzos para borrar lo más pronto posible las secuelas de este destructivo evento.

Un principio se mantiene inamovible: la Revolución no dejará a nadie desamparado y desde ya se toman medidas para que ninguna familia cubana quede abandonada a su suerte.

Como ha sido costumbre cada vez que un fenómeno meteorológico nos golpea, son muchas las muestras de solidaridad recibidas desde todas partes del mundo. Jefes de Estado y de Gobierno, organizaciones políticas y amigos de los movimientos de solidaridad han expresado la voluntad de ayudarnos, lo que agradecemos en nombre de los más de once millones de cubanas y cubanos.

Enfrentemos la recuperación con el ejemplo del Comandante en Jefe de la Revolución Cubana, Fidel Castro Ruz, quien con su permanente fe en la victoria y férrea voluntad nos enseñó que no existen imposibles. En estas difíciles horas, su legado nos hace fuerte y nos une.

Raúl Castro Ruz

La Habana, 10 de septiembre de 2017

Annunci

Impressions from a weekend in Yueyang

It had been a brief trip – a short distance, it takes about half an hour by train to arrive from Changsha in Yueyang. I had been there earlier, seeing the blueprints and architectural models of what I would visit now as reality already in place – surely part of the reality as it is about an ongoing development (can anywhere and any time be an end to development?).

Sunday morning, the second day of the weekend trip, 收件人 collects me from the hotel and we walk along the lake – although it is cold again, it is nice, especially after having made the first steps and warming up. A modern and clean area – the tennis court, a little lake with goldfish and golf course bring the notion of the “leisure society” to the fore.

After walking on for a while, I see some old houses, a bit stray from the development path – I write development path as the way we walked is part of the ongoing development programme that aims on attracting tourists – for me always a bit of a contradiction in terms, as I ask myself about the self-destructive potential: People come to an area because they are looking for nature, for some remoteness that allows retreating from the daily stress. Anyway, asking for these houses, is met with a question:

Do you want to walk a bit through the countryside?

And so we go, changing from the clean park-street to a more or less muddy pathway. After having walked there for some time an old man looks – a bit  – skeptical at us – his one hand holds the walking-stick; with the other he is looking after the plants.

My father would know all these plants – he grew up in the countryside.

收件人 says. And I want to know a bit more. He is from the real countryside whereas for the people here the little farming is an additional source of income – the elderly and the women doing the jobs “at home”, whereas the “male breadwinner” is working  in some industrial job, perhaps doing some farmwork in the evening. A bit further I see the rubble of destroyed cottages, the real development path: contrasting the old with the new, but more showing the contradictions between them. The rubble and a bit further the new houses – not really skyscrapers, but too high to easily count or estimate the number of stories. I ask where the people will live in the future.

The government provides apartments – and also some subsidies that makes it possible to pay the rent.

So far the new houses look neat – as long as one does not see the large squares  that had been there before; and one can truly acknowledge the greens, the new squares, the nearness to the lake, and the view on the mountains in the distance … – yes, and another feature is again and again delightful – the “monuments”: old stones, pagodas, tablets bearing the inscription of traditional and new poems …, integrating different perspectives.

Synchrony of times and cultures? – Changing the scene ?

We talk about the price of accommodation – those who lived here in the old cottages may gain nicer accommodation – and they get apparently also some support. Finally they need the compensation for the loss of the additional income of subsistence farming. – But is that compensation measurable in terms of money? Do they loose part of what was meaningful for them? Do they loose the burden of the heavy work?

收件人’s parents want to buy a new place and this brings us to a more general perspective which can be put into a nutshell:

  • government buildings, i.e. accommodation tat had been provided by the state,
  • had been replaced by accommodation owned by the employers: tough one did not live at the workplace, one lived in the accommodation provided by the owners of the workplace. Hearing about it, the old Krupp-settlements come to my mind: working for the Krupps, living in the houses the Krupps provided, and buying in the shops the Krupps owned.
  • The new stage of development is as matter of “freedom”: The market provides accommodation and the law of demand is the rule.

Isn’t it what we read in the Critique of the Gotha Program?

From each according to his ability, to each according to his needs.

Sure, in the light of the market it refers to the ability to pay, and the need to submit to the rules of competition. And this is major part of the individualism: personal disintegration, taking the form of the need to look after yourself stops all of us from looking for integrated solutions, going beyond the establishment of princedoms and princessdoms.

per una società più sostenibile

That sustainability is not a question of concerns about the environment is shown in some brief reflections that had been made in preparation of the EXPO 2015, in Milano. the presentation highlights that we are talking about societal sustainability. And as such it is concerned with relations – relations of people that are characterising their productive and reproductive activities in every day’s life. Thinking along this line has to take account of the fact that the environment – “natural” and “man-made” – is not external but an entity of which human beings and their praxis are essential part. Re-emphasising praxis is essential as in this way we can go beyond isolated activities – as important as measures to protect nature, traffic control, calls for responsible consumption and the like are, they are conceptually not anything more than a drop in the bucket. Thanks go to the Department of Political and Social Sciences – University of Pavia. Human Development, Capability and Poverty International Research Centre, IUSS Pavia and the Fondazione Giangiacomo Feltrinelli