The Free Society Fellowship is Young Voices response to Charlottesville and the tragedy that occurred there in August 2017. Our goal was to reinforce the message of our movement… in contrast to ethno-nationalism…the free society is cosmopolitan, embracing people of all backgrounds under the common umbrella of free speech, property rights, religious freedom, and the rule of law.
Katarina Hall is a Young Voices Advocate and Free Society Fellow. We taped this conversation on Friday, March 31st to cap off her run in the program and get a sense for how he feels about the hurdles our democracy must clear going forward in order to survive. Our discussion covers Charlottesville, democracy in Cuba and more.
Ep #105: Katarina Hall & the Free Society Fellowship
Ibis Valdes is a Young Voices Advocate based in the Miami area and author of a fantastic narrative piece over at GlennBeck.com on a conversation with Rosa Maria Paya. Rosa is a Cuban political dissident, only 28 years old, and leading an initiative to democratize Cuban elections at great risk to her life. Her father died under mysterious circumstances fighting a similiar battle with Cuban regime. Ibis met with Rosa in Little Havana to discuss her work and also how Cuba exports communist propaganda abroad via academia, medicine, film, media and more. It’s really fascinating.
#97: Lessons Learned from Rosa Maria Paya on Cuba & Democracy
You can find Ibis on Twitter @ValdesIbis and follow Young Voices @YVADV to keep up with our writers’ work.
Cuba is sometimes idealized as a successful counter model to capitalism. This month, however, the University of Chicago’s NORC released a study about the opinions of Cuba’s population. The findings of the poll were clear: Cubans want capitalism.
The Cuban people are ready and willing to improve their lives, but the government prevents them from doing so.
This kind of information was not previously available because the Cuban government repressed information in and out of the island. As such, the study, based on in-person interviews with 840 randomly chosen adults, gives a rare glimpse into the sentiments of Cubans about the system under which they live.
Cubans on Cuba
65 percent of interviewees said they want to privatize more businesses and decentralize the economy. 68 percent see competition as a positive way to promote ideas and as a motivator to work hard. Many Cubans have an entrepreneurial mindset with 56 percent of the people planning to start a business in the next 5 years. To compare, 57 percent of Americans plan to become entrepreneurs. The Cuban people are ready and willing to improve their lives, but the government prevents them from doing so.
Further, only 13 percent of the population thinks the Cuban economy is doing well. GDP shrunk by almost one percent last year. Venezuela, one of Cuba’s main benefactors, had to reduce its oil deliveries by 60 percent due to their own economic crisis, which has had a heavy impact on Cuba’s GDP.
Read the rest of this piece on FEE