RUSH: So it’s May Day out there and you have the requisite immigration protests and rallies and so forth, but you also have the Drive-By Media absorbed with Cuber. [JFK pronunciation of ‘Cuba.’] You have Andrea Mitchell down there, and everybody on the body watch, waiting to see if Fidel Castro is going to show up at the standard viewing place where he reviews all these slaves walking by and proclaims them great workers and so forth. Of course, Fidel didn’t show up. He didn’t make it.
But the thing I want to focus on here is — I don’t know if it’s just ignorance. More and more, I’m coming to the conclusion that in addition to the agenda that drives the Drive-By Media, there’s just some profound ignorance that is masked by an all encompassing arrogance and conceit that makes them think they can’t possibly be wrong about anything. Their arrogance and their conceit has closed them off. It has insulated them from anything other than the worldview that they have been taught or evolved or adopted over the course of their years as adults. Let’s start here with a little montage, late night and this morning. We have Katie Couric, Lara Logan from CBS, Contessa Brewer from PMSNBC, Russ Mitchell from CBS, Charlie Gibson, ABC, of course, and Ann Curry, and they’re all reporting on Castro and May Day.
COURIC: In Cuba tonight, a lot of anticipation. Reports there say Fidel Castro may lead tomorrow’s May Day celebration!
LOGAN: Cubans are hoping that Fidel Castro will make his first public appearance!
BREWER: Is there any indication the crowds out there could see Castro today?
MITCHELL: Cubans will mark May Day in Havana. The big question is, ‘Will Fidel Castro join them?’
GIBSON: There is drama in Cuba tonight about whether Fidel Castro is about to make his first appearance, since a mysterious illness and emergency surgery last summer.
CURRY: In Havana, all eyes are on its May Day celebration for any signs of Fidel Castro.
RUSH: Do you think the American people were waiting with bated breath to find out what might happen, whether or not Castro shows up? Does anybody really think that? These people are the ones who are obsessed with it. Here is Andrea Mitchell on MSNBC. She reported the following about Castro appearing.
MITCHELL (saddened): The signs are that he is not going to appear in public.
MITCHELL: Cuban officials say that —
MITCHELL: — he’s not going to appear —
MITCHELL: — today. He is more comfortable now behind the scenes–
RUSH: Oh, too bad.
MITCHELL: — but clearly he is not the same ol’ Fidel Castro. If he were to appear, he could not live up to the expectations, perhaps, of these hundreds of thousands of people who for decades saw him at all of these May Day celebrations.
RUSH: Really? He’s going to deflate their expectations? He won’t have a gun, won’t start gunning people down, huh? He won’t order the protesters back in line, huh? But that’s not the worst of it. Andrea Mitchell said that Cuba’s ‘only major problem’ is the US embargo. I kid you not. These people are just plain ignorant. There certainly has to be a part of that. She said, ‘Officials are pointing out — and it’s certainly true from my visits here — that the government runs its business as usual. They’ve managed this succession rather well. Raul Castro is here today and other leaders are very much in charge. There have been no major problems other than…’ We’re talking about May Day. ‘There have been no major problems [at May Day in Cuba] other than the continuing economic difficulties that of course Cuba faces because of the US embargo, the economic embargo.’ Boy, you know, folks, if our economic embargo were lifted, if only that, why, communism could flourish and work its wonders! The Drive-By Media, still depressed over the collapse of the Soviet Union, could maybe point south to Havana and say, ‘See? It works!’ Cuba’s only major problem is the US embargo? Cuba’s problem is communism and a tyrannical dictator! Now, let me illustrate this. (interruption) What are you laughing at in there? What in the world is so funny? That’s Cuba’s problem. (interruption) There I go with this communism thing.
Well, let me just pose this question to you. Cuber trades with every country in the world. They trade with Hugo Chavez; they trade with Canada; they trade with the European Union. You can go anywhere but the United States and buy anything Cuba exports. (Other than cigars, I don’t know why you would. Maybe rum.) I don’t know why you would, but you can. By the same token, those countries export to Cuba. Now, there’s two things about this. It does indicate the power of the US economy and how it can uplift, there’s no question. You throw in the economic giants of the rest of the world, the Canadians and the UK and the EU and the emerging former Soviet Bloc nations, and the Saudis. The Saudis trade with them. Saddam traded with them. Castro sent Saddam cigars. Saddam sent back who knows what, probably weapons and arms, maybe some WMDs in the presidential palace there. You never know. But the idea that a country that trades with the entire world, that exports whatever it has and imports whatever it can pay for, to every country in the world but the United States is somehow still an armpit of economic destruction, that this somehow is the fault of the US embargo, is just intellectually absurd!
I’m not arguing to lift it or to keep it or what have you. I, frankly, think it’s silly to have it, given that we’ve traded with all of our other commie enemies and they’re down the tubes. The Soviets are down the tubes. (Well, as communists they’re down the tubes.) Vietnam? Down the tubes as communists. We have Americans designing and building golf courses in Vietnam. In Hanoi! It’s an emerging golf market. You can’t get more conservative or capitalist than that! So I just say lift it or whatever. The problem with lifting it is that whatever results from it will end up in Castro’s Swiss bank accounts or Raul’s or whatever. Now, there’s also news from the Southern Hemisphere: ‘President Hugo Chavez’s government took over Venezuela’s last remaining privately run oil fields on Tuesday, intensifying a decisive struggle with Big Oil over the future of one of the world’s most lucrative oil deposits. Oil Minister Rafael Ramirez declared that the oil fields had reverted to state control just after midnight in a televised ceremony. Oil workers in hard hats raised the flags of Venezuela and the national oil company a refinery and four drilling fields in the oil-rich Orinoco River basin. Chavez planned a more elaborate celebration Tuesday afternoon with red-clad oil workers, soldiers and a fly-over by Russian-made fighter jets.’
‘Despite all this fanfare…’ and by the way, the companies ‘ceding control’? They’re not ceding anything! They’re losing it. The way this is written makes it sound like these Big Oil companies are giving it up. They are, ‘BP PLC, ConocoPhillips, Exxon Mobil Corp., Chevron Corp., France’s Total SA and Norway’s Statoil ASA. All but ConocoPhillips have agreed in principle to state control,’ What are they going to do? ‘and Venezuela has warned it may expropriate ConocoPhillips assets if the company doesn’t follow suit.’ Now, you may be thinking, ‘So what, Rush? So what? This is cool. It’s about time Big Oil got it handed to them. It’s about time.’ I want to warn you people. Remember what Hillary Clinton said about Big Oil profits and ExxonMobil? She wants to take them and she wants to take them and plow them back into health care. ‘Despite all this fanfare, these Big Oil companies in Venezuela remain locked in a behind the scenes struggle with the Chavez government. They appear to be taking a decisive stand, demanding conditions and presumably compensation to convince them that Venezuela will continue to be good business.’
I’ll tell you, what’s going to happen with Chavez here is going to start with Big Oil, but eventually the Venezuelan government is going to own everything, and this, if we aren’t careful — we’ve just raised the Venetian blinds here, and we can look through the window of North America in the not-too-distant future if people like John Edwards or Hillary Clinton or Barack Obama ever get deeply entrenched in power. You look at the Democrat Party enemies list, folks, look at who it is they’re routinely criticizing: Wal-Mart, Big Oil, Big Pharma. They’re out for ‘national health care.’ They want socialized medicine. You hear the term ‘single payer’? That’s what that’s codeword for socialized medicine. They clearly want it. It is about power. It is about power and control. Their supporters, the Democrats on the left, think it’s all about getting even with Big Oil. It’s all about bringing ‘fairness’ back to the marketplace and lowering gasoline prices. It has nothing to do with it, folks. It’s all about power. It’s like, we have a record quarter for tax receipts. Tax receipts have gone through the roof. Tax cuts work. They increase revenue to the treasury. It works every time it’s tried.
Now, the Democrats steadfastly oppose tax cuts even though what people think they really want is the money. Look all the money Washington is rolling in now that it wouldn’t have had without the cap gains tax cuts and the income tax rate reductions and so forth. You hear them talking about, ‘Well, the first thing we’re going to do is raise taxes.’ John Edwards is out there saying he’s going to do it even better than Clinton did in ’93. The Breck Girl is going to raise taxes even more than Clinton did. You look at this and you say, ‘Well, why? Do they want money?’ No, folks. Yeah, they want the money. It’s about power. It’s about control. It is about making the government bigger, and it is about making the citizenry have fewer choices and so forth and less economic mobility.
This is liberalism. Never forget it.
RUSH: To Danville, California. This is Mike. You just reminded me of something. That interchange collapse, the tanker truck that blew up the interchange leading to the Bay Bridge, you know what I read about that, Mike?
CALLER: Read about it?
RUSH: Yeah. I read that the flames melted the steel in the construction.
CALLER: That’s impossible!
RUSH: Well, I thought that was impossible, because the 9/11 conspiracy theorists say that fire could not melt steel, for example, in the Twin Towers, that it had to be Bush and the government setting off implosion devices in order to bring down the buildings on purpose. Here’s a second instance here where fire melted steel in that construction project.
CALLER: Well, no doubt you’re onto something.
RUSH: Yes. Well, I usually am, as host.
CALLER: As host. Well, anyway, it’s an honor. I haven’t talked to you in awhile, and now you’re a Nobel Peace Prize nominee, so —
RUSH: Yes. I keep forgetting to mention that because I’m not braggadocios.
CALLER: Yes. We’re pulling for you on the West Coast.
RUSH: Thank you.
CALLER: You’d be my vote.
RUSH: Thank you.
CALLER: Right on to Cuba. I’m a frequent visitor to the island.
RUSH: How do you get there?
CALLER: Actually, legally, through a humanitarian group. Things are a little bit tighter than they were a couple years ago. But I walk down with papers and scare immigration when I come back and I check the box that I’ve been in Cuba, but it works.
RUSH: What, do you fly into Havana or you take a boat in there?
CALLER: Well, there’s a couple ways. There’s actually charters. Air Jamaica used to have charters.
RUSH: Yeah. And then when Castro thought that we’re getting close to ending the embargo, he’d shoot ’em down.
CALLER: Well, no, not really. But there’s multiple pathways to get in. A lot of charters out of Miami that go direct. There used to be a flight from — I don’t know if it’s still flying — used to go from LA actually straight into Jose Marti in Havana. And I’m always amazed — you’re right on. You must have traveled there or obviously are well schooled on Cuba. I’m not an expert by any means, but I know, I think, a lot more than that the Drive-By Media is reporting. Your first impression, I’m always amazed when the Oliver Stones come back and they talk about the virtues of Cuba. The first impression, I’ve always had, is the place is broken. I mean, every high school kid should spend a week in Havana and you’ll come back and kiss the ground you left in America, and you’ll see recruiting go up. What I’m getting at, the — you know, for example, the trip from the airport into Havana, my first impression is, ‘Fidel, this place is broken. It’s just busted.’
RUSH: Let me tell you something, Mike. It’s in such bad shape, even now on places like The History Channel, they’re being forced to do stories on the crumbling, one-time-beautiful art deco architecture in downtown Havana. There is no restoration. There is no maintenance. It’s literally all falling apart. And you see this is all a problem, the US embargo. But you wonder why — and I did for the longest time, too — how is it that leftists, be they academics or entertainers or whatever, go down there, and they see what you see, you can’t miss it. They see the squalor. Remember we had a story not long ago, Castro was going to give away rice cookers to everyone? The reason he was giving rice cookers away is because a black market in producing food had started. People are starving. They are rationing beans in Cuba. They’re rationed beans, folks. You wonder why do the leftists from academia and entertainment go down there and come back raving about the place. There’s a simple, simple answer for this.
They see what you see, Mike, but they don’t see it. What they see is a man with total power. You have to understand leftists, and there’s certain things about them that you cannot omit. You can’t forget they believe in a huge, all-powerful government to tell everybody else how to live. I will guarantee you that when these leftists that you’re asking about take their trips into downtown Havana, they’re picked up, because they’re there to see Castro. They’re picked up in nice cars and they’re given the nicest way into town possible. They listen to Castro and they hear an idealist, and they hear a guy who’s got his gripes against the United States, as they do. They identify with him. ‘He’s just this little old guy. Look what he’s done! Why, he took over that country. He took it away from a right-wing dictator, Batista, and he’s done his best, and if it weren’t for the US targeting him and trying to kill him and assassinate him with exploding cigars and the Bay of Pigs — and if it weren’t for our embargo — who knows what a paradise this would be!’
They thought that about the Soviet Union. There’s this attraction they have to leaders who are omnipotently powerful, and that’s the attraction that Castro has for them. They don’t see Castro in any way responsible for the squalor and the poverty and the decrepitness of the country. They see Castro as still in the midst of a 50-, 40-year mission to fix it. But my gosh the odds that he faces with the US government? Not one president has recognized him! He’s faced a country only 90 miles away that probably would like to bomb or invade or whatever. Folks, it sounds convoluted, but this is the way they think. But the main thing is they look at the power and they’re envious of it. That’s it in a nutshell. Then they start lying to themselves about the good intentions that Castro has had all these years. Look at liberals! They’ve reeked their share of havoc, culturally in this country. They don’t own up to that, either. No, because you’re not supposed to examine results. You’re supposed to examine good intentions and big hearts. That’s what they see in Castro. How else to explain the pure sophistry that Cuban health care is somehow a standard to be emulated? How do you explain that? Do you see them sending their kids down there for health care?
When Castro got sick, he had to bring in surgeons from Spain, for crying out loud. He didn’t even use his own people. Well, the second time around he did because the Cuban people botched it. He might have played a role in that by refusing a colostomy bag. He demanded that his colon be re-sewn and it broke and he got infected so they had to bring some Spanish doctor in who knew what he was doing. Look, it’s like I said in the previous hour. You have Andrea Mitchell down there, and she honestly believes the only thing holding Cuba back is the US embargo. Why, if it weren’t for the US embargo, communism would thrive. So we’re supposed to support communism, lift the embargo and then communism can thrive. Do you realize that’s just ignorant? It is sophistry as is their illusion, delusion that the Cuban health care down there is the standard which everybody should have their own health care measured.