2014 February 23 Sunday
Food Rations In Cuba Per Month?

Can Robert Zubrin be right about food rations in Cuba?

These comprise 5 pounds of rice, 5 pounds of sugar, 1 pound of salt, 10 ounces of beans, 8 ounces of cooking oil, 0.15 ounces of coffee mixed with unknown stuff that isnít coffee, 6 ounces of very-low-quality fish, and 1 pound of a disgusting product made from unsalable animal parts, per month. No fruits or vegetables are included.

The 5 lb quantities are 2.27 kg or 2270 grams. Since white rice is only 590 calories per lb that works out to 2950 calories for the rice. But the sugar is 1757 calories per pound or 8785 calories. We are at 11734 calories so far. The cooking oil is 251 calories per ounce or about 2000 calories total. That puts the total calories still below 14,000 calories or about 7 days of living. The remaining 22 ounces might provide about 20 calories per ounce. That's only 440 more calories. Are people in Cuba barely surviving on about 1000 calories per day?

Another story puts the rations in Cuba at 7 lb of rice per month with the rations lasting only 10 days per month. People buy their remaining food on the market.

Another story says Raul Castro has been cutting the food ration. Criminal punishments reflect a food scarce socialist society: You can get 4 to 10 years in prison for killing a cow in Cuba versus 7 to 15 years for killing a human.

Can the poorest in Cuba afford enough calories?

Share |      By Randall Parker at 2014 February 23 08:25 PM 


Comments
shiva1008 said at February 24, 2014 7:37 AM:

I'm pretty sure they meant dry rice, not cooked rice. :)

HiRes said at February 24, 2014 11:17 AM:

No, the Cuban poor cannot afford enough calories. This is just a reprise of the "Cuban neuropathy epidemic" of the early 1990's which was caused by malnutrition ( see this old newspaper story for some details, though it is marred by American-liberal-press claims that the US government is responsible for starvation in Communist countries (because of trade sanctions, even though no other countries impose sanctions on Cuba-- that is why you can smoke Cuban cigars in europe, Mexico, etc.) .

Check it out said at February 24, 2014 5:06 PM:

"Criminal punishments reflect a food scarce socialist society"

Sounds like the question, "Are you in favor of the dead penalty so there can be a reduction in crime?" When in fact in many countries where it has been implemented crime rate has not gone down. You are trying to marry two different concepts as if they always go together, socialism with food scarcity. You could've said "Criminal punishments reflect a food scarce society"

What about all those non-socialist countries like Salvador, Honduras, Haiti, etc, that are much closer to capitalism? There's now hunger in ultra capitalist-neoliberal-fascist Mexico, and remember that it is bordering with the U.S.

Take a look: http://www.worldfinancialreview.com/?p=566 or
https://www.wsws.org/en/articles/2010/09/pers-s23.html or
http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/07/29/mexico-poverty_n_3673568.html

Gotta be careful when you talk about Socialism Randall, cause I know you don't mean Stalinism, do you? Sweden, Norway, Austria, Finland, France, are nations with long socialist traditions. They live and eat better than Americans.

Black Death said at February 25, 2014 7:25 AM:

Here's an interesting web site ("The Two Cubas") that contrasts the desperate poverty of the ordinary Cuban people with the lavish goods available to the foreign tourists. This tourism is a major source of hard currency for the Cuban government, and the visitors stay in resorts and eat in restaurants that measure up to the highest international standards. No Cubans allowed, of course, unless they work there. In 1959, when the Castros took power, Cuba had the second-highest per capita income in Latin America (after Venezuela). Now it's the second lowest (ahead of only Haiti). Ordinary Cubans can only get enough to eat by dealing in the black market. The police regularly search people looking for contraband food items.

destructure said at February 25, 2014 5:02 PM:

What about all those non-socialist countries like Salvador, Honduras, Haiti, etc, that are much closer to capitalism? There's now hunger in ultra capitalist-neoliberal-fascist Mexico, and remember that it is bordering with the U.S.

El Salvador and Honduras are poor but that's a legacy of socialist government subsidies and civil war. Since committing to free market policies, Salvadoran and Honduran GDP real growth rates increased to 4.7% and 7% respectively. As for Haiti... it's Haiti. What do you expect? Populations with IQ's in the 70s and 80s aren't going to have first world economies no matter what economic system they use.

destructure said at February 25, 2014 5:12 PM:

People need salt, beans, rice and fish. But they don't need sugar, coffee or cooking oil. I'm not trying to excuse Cuba's horrible economic system. But it always bugs me when people talk about the price of sugar and coffee as if they're necessities. They're not. And it's not that hard to have a garden in the backyard. Cuba is a tropical island for crying out loud. The growing season is year round.

leftistconservative said at February 26, 2014 5:48 AM:

another lifestyle nazi...

Toddy Cat said at February 26, 2014 10:18 AM:

"They live and eat better than Americans."

Yeah, food shortages are a real problem in the U.S. Tha's why you see so many skinny, starving poor people in trailer parks all over the U.S. And yeah, Mexico is "Fascist"...

You just can't make the stuff that socialists say up. We even get the "Stalinist" version of the "No True Socialist" fallacy. Talk about too good to be true

Check it out said at February 26, 2014 5:04 PM:

No Toddy Cat. The fact that you see so many obese people all over the U.S. doesn't mean they eat better. In fact that's why the U.S. is number 1 in obesity, 'cause they're not eating well. Yes Toddy, millions of obese Americans who suffer from malnutition, even if you believe being obese is being well fed. And yeah, Mexico is Fascist even if you don't know the definition, a little like the U.S. but a lot, a lot poorer and now a lot hungrier.

My only point was: Socialism is not the same as hunger, nor does it necessarily lead to hunger, as it seemed to be implied by Randall. That's all. If you believe Socialism invariably leads to hunger, I will be willing to read your thoughts and reasons.

Here it goes again, maybe you can give it at least one minute of consideration, because it happens to be an objective truth: Sweden, Norway, Austria, Finland, France, are nations with long socialist traditions, and they are not hungry. They live and eat better than Americans. Polls show that they in fact lead happier lives than Americans. I can include many other socialist-oriented nations who are not hungry, if you like. Catch you later.

Check it out said at March 12, 2014 5:17 PM:

Yeah, well you are wrong about the causes of hunger.


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