Citizens’ Reasons 7

Razones Ciudadanas Capítulo 7 from Yoani Sanchez on Vimeo.


77 thoughts on “Citizens’ Reasons 7

  1. 74Anónimo

    Julio 17th, 2011 at 23:58
    albert (qui ose gagne)
    Julio 16th, 2011 at 07:22

    The changing of nicks by the “usual suspects” must be their new answer for disruption, I suspect that they are doing what they saying others do, is just one person w/many names & the same address … perhaps the friendly translator can confirm?

    For Your information, nicks are censored and need to be changed often.

    mine has been the same 4 years & has never been censored …

  2. Organized Rings Run Basically “Punishment-Free’ Crime Operations

    Cuban refugees are dominating arrests in Florida’s indoor marijuana trade in what investigators call a nearly punishment-free crime.

    South Florida is considered the center of a trade in which groups of young Cubans throughout the state are turning to the lucrative business of raising ultra-potent pot worth up to $4,500 a pound, without fear of deportation or lengthy prison sentences.
    Probation is a common sentence for anyone convicted in state court of running a growhouse, drug agents say. And, unlike other foreign-born felons, U.S. policy prevents the deportation of Cubans.

    South Florida groups identified by law enforcement as Cuban Drug Trafficking Organizations control hundreds of growhouses that have sprung up from Miami to Atlanta since 2005, according to the U.S. Department of Justice, court records and interviews with local and federal drug agents. “This takes me back to the old days of the mob,” said Sgt. Julio Lima, of the Polk County Sheriff’s Organized Crime Squad. “This is organized crime at its best.”

    Statewide records do not specify the nationalities of those who run growhouses. However, authorities say that Cuban influence has risen rapidly.

    Supervisors for the South Florida High Intensity Drug Trafficking Area estimate that 85 percent to 90 percent of the suspects arrested in Florida on grow-house-related charges were Cubans who arrived in the United States within the past five years. They base their estimate on arrests in South Florida and two statewide busts in 2008 and 2009 known as “D-Day” and “Eagle Claw.” The trend is especially apparent in Palm Beach and Miami-Dade counties. Statistics from those two statewide busts show that in Palm Beach, out of 36 arrests, 90 to 95 percent were Cuban. In Miami-Dade, out of 92 arrests, 95 percent arrested were Cubans.

    While Palm Beach County doesn’t track place of birth on people arrested in growhouse busts, “anecdotally, the overwhelming majority of people we find operating growhouses are of Cuban descent,” said spokeswoman Teri Barbera, of the Palm Beach County Sheriff’s Office. The rise of Cuban growers has been taking place over the past decade with increasingly sophisticated methods of operations, she added.

    For example, one way growhouses can be detected is by the large amount of electricity used. Now growhouses employ electricians who move from house to house to find ways to get power directly and bypass the meters.

    The data paints a different picture in Broward County, where out of 18 arrests in the two statewide busts in 2008 and 2009, only two, or 11 percent, involved Cubans.

    “The Cuban grow-house angle is not an issue here in Broward,” said Mike Jachles, a spokesman for the Broward Sheriff’s Office. “We have not seen that.”

    Sgt. Bill Cunneen, of the Broward Sheriff’s Office, says geography plays a role.

    “Broward, historically, has never been a big indoor grow-operation place,” Cunneen said. “We don’t have these big rural areas where these guys can really spread out and not worry about their neighbors watching them. That’s what really stops them from going into the smaller, bedroom communities.”

    And of the growers nabbed in Broward, few are Cubans, he said. “There’s no type of group that dominates the marijuana growing here.”

    Still, the trend shows up in many areas of the state. Some of the best data in the state on this little-known aspect of the drug trade are kept by the Polk County Sheriff’s Office. A spreadsheet on every grow-house bust in Polk County since 2005 shows that 142 of 172 suspects — 84 percent — caught tending marijuana growhouses have identified their place of birth as Cuba.

    The topic is sensitive in a state where Cuban refugee status was a badge of honor until it was tainted by a few thousand criminals in the 1980s Mariel boatlift.

    “The last thing we want to do in law enforcement is crucify the Cuban-American community as a whole — they have made South Florida what it is today,” said Capt. Joe Mendez, a Cuban-American member of the South Florida High Intensity Drug Trafficking Area task force. “That’s why we are saying these are Cuban refugees, recent arrivals. . . . They arrive here on a raft, and drug dealers give them a place to live and promise them they’ll own the ( grow ) house in a year or two.”

    Cuban-American National Council President Guarione M. Diaz in Miami was unaware of the high percentage of young Cuban-born suspects arrested statewide in the pot trade.

    Told of the 348 growhouse-related arrests last year in Miami-Dade County, Diaz said, “Twenty thousand Cubans arrive in South Florida every year, so numerically 300 arrests would be a relatively small number. But I think even one is too many.” In the United States last year, 49,500 Cubans were granted legal permanent residency status, according to the Congressional Research Service.

    While Florida cops have learned Cuban drug rings sometimes run a half-dozen growhouses or more at once, there still is much about the organizations they don’t know. The reason: There is no central database for sharing information about the illegal business.

    And, while drug agents know a suspect’s nationality, they don’t always learn whether a growhouse worker was recruited from his home country or was lured into the trade after getting to the United States.

    Raiding a marijuana patch hardly ever leads to the arrests of any ring members more important than low-level workers.

    “None of them know each other, and that’s for a reason,” Lt. Steven Ward of Polk County Sheriff’s Special Investigations Unit said. “If any one of them gets busted, they can’t point the finger at each other, and they can’t point the finger at the boss.”

    With few or no ringleader arrests, investigators are prevented from drawing a complete diagram of Cuban marijuana grow organizations. The few busts of bosses have come in much larger federal cases after months of surveillance.

    For instance, in September, [redacted], both of Naples, were arrested and charged as ringleaders of eight growhouses from Sarasota to Miami. An investigation by federal drug enforcers and eight local police agencies confiscated more than 1,600 plants — and took 18 months.

    This much authorities know: Whoever is calling the shots in the Cuban indoor-grow groups is reading U.S. and Florida statutes about drug crimes and penalties. They know to keep the number of plants under 100, the number that would expose them to tough federal sentences.

    Last year, Florida led the nation in growhouse shutdowns, raiding 1,022 of them, according to the National Drug Intelligence Center. The average number of plants seized in those houses: 76.

    Most busts stay in state court, where conviction as a first-time offender typically means probation, according to court records and drug agents across Florida.

    Until the early 1980s, Florida’s marijuana trade thrived on pot smuggled from Jamaica, Mexico and South America. There was little competition from home-grown “weed.” Back then, agents say, most growers were white males who worked independently and raised marijuana outdoors on both public land and private property. Growhouses were rare.

    Domestic pot production began to change around 2000. Interviews and court records indicate that Miami became the center of a cottage industry raising the highest-quality, most-expensive pot in Florida. The city continues to be a hub where many growers buy supplies, find bail bondsmen and call home after arrests in Central and North Florida, court records show.

    “In 2000 we had 14 indoor grows, and by last year there were 348,” South Florida HIDTA Director Tim Wagner said of Miami-Dade County. “About five years ago, we started to realize there was indeed a problem and we needed to do something about it.”

    It’s a burgeoning problem: Growing 1 pound of marketable marijuana per plant every three months, a single house can produce about $1 million a year, drug agents say. And the yield is five to 10 times stronger than it was 20 years ago, say drug agents who have had the pot tested.

    Drug agents across the state said they think growhouses ship about 100 pounds each every three months to Miami for distribution in the northeastern United States, at up to $8,000 a pound.

    The value of indoor-grown pot far tops marijuana from Mexico, once a major source, which sells for about $1,000 a pound, Cunneen, of the Broward Sheriff’s Office said.

  3. @#75
    Keep in mind: while u point a finger at others there are three pointing at u from ur own hand & while u ponder that: where/are u “…when dictators cut hands off, heads off. stone people in the square and let men off after raping woman and children?” …pal

  4. I am not in the business of copy and paste like the support group (whole 1 and a half person pretending to be hundred and a half). hose who want the proof of what I say can look up the fact themselves. It is in the public domain.

    Instead of writing bull every day and talking about the things they know nothing about, a quick look up around will reveal everything.

    But, alas, it is by far easier to spew ignorance and fanatism than make an effort and learn.

    No wonder even the inept and incompetent Castros beat the hell out of you and your parents, and made you swim over to your new country, the nazist gulag usa.

    And while we are at it, my favourite subject usa, how about this: you crimsons (beach thieves and small time drug dealers living in the slums and sewage of Miami) are all fo “democracy” when Cuba is in question, but where are you when dictators cut hands off, heads off, stone people on the square and let men off after raping women and children?

    Like in Saudi Arabia.

    But, that’s ok, they are “our friends”, right?

    It is only not okay if they are not “our friends”.

    Like Cuba.

    Dictators like the saudi murderers and rapists are ok.


  5. The changing of nicks by the “usual suspects” must be their new answer for disruption, I suspect that they are doing what they saying others do, is just one person w/many names & the same address … perhaps the friendly translator can confirm?

  6. Hey Humb!
    Is it VENECUBA OR CUBAZUELA? mortality made chavez go back to church & get a bendicion from the kardenal, talk about grasping a straws when death comes calling … all the power hr always wanted & look … no he believes =)


    FOREIGN POLICY MAGAZINE : Preparing for a post-Hugo Venezuela- By José R. Cárdenas

    With drips and drabs of information, Hugo Chávez is slowly informing the world that he is seriously ill. After finally admitting he has cancer, this week he said he may be undergoing either chemotherapy or radiation treatment over the next few months.

    While still unknown is what type of cancer he has or the prognosis, it seems safe to assume that his medical condition will certainly impair his ability to continue governing Venezuela as before.

    Indeed, all indications are he is huddling today with his Cuban advisors to lay the groundwork for a succession to ensure the survival of Chavismo without its loquacious founder.

    Vice President Elias Jaua, a Chávez (and Fidel Castro) loyalist, is officially next in line of succession, but he is a colorless apparatchik whom no one considers to be the long-term answer. Foreign Minister Nicolás Maduro, another slavish Chávez acolyte, is similarly not seen as a viable replacement.

    Defense Minister Gen. Henry Rangel Silva and military intelligence chief Hugo Carvajal, two powerful figures lurking in the shadows, are Chavistas to the core, but both have been sanctioned by the U.S. Treasury Department for facilitating narcotics trafficking through Venezuela, disqualifying either from post-Hugo political office. Still, they have the power to make or break Hugo’s successor — and they definitely have the will, given their vulnerability to U.S. legal action if the wrong person replaces Hugo.

    Also circling about is an ambitious but corrupt cohort of former government officials that includes national assemblyman Diosdado Cabello (a former vice president), José Vicente Rangel (a former Vice President), and Jesse Chacón (a former minister of the presidency). They are crafty and formidable operators, but their conspicuous venality, and their untrustworthiness as deemed by the Cubans because of their independent thinking, make them non-starters. They nevertheless should be watched.

    Thus, the only one who appears to have the best chance of keeping this motley collection of thuggish characters in check and carrying on Chavismo without Hugo is his older brother Adán .

    Adán Chávez, 15 months Hugo’s senior, is no stranger to radical left-wing politics. As far back as the early 1980s, he was involved in conspiracies to overthrow the Venezuelan government. Fervently Marxist and pro-Castro, he has served as education minister and ambassador to Cuba and currently serves as governor of Barinas state. He is known as an ideologue through and through.

    According to a Wikileaks cable, Chávez confides in only two people: Adán and Fidel Castro.

    In late June, Adán made international headlines when he told government supporters that, while they prefer to maintain power through the ballot box, they should not rule out armed struggle if the need arises.

    The benediction of Adán already seems to be underway. During Hugo’s mysterious stay in Cuba (undergoing surgery), officials floundered about trying to explain Hugo’s absence. It was Adán who appeared to be the best informed about what was going on. Also, when Hugo returned to Venezuela, Adán was the only other political figure to appear with him on the balcony of the presidential palace to greet his supporters.

    Adán ‘s problem is that he lacks charisma like the others, but his all-important bloodlines will likely trump that deficiency (much like the dour Raúl has become the titular leader of the decrepit Castro regime in Cuba). The Cubans will make sure of that.

    Moreover, also backing Adán will be a rogues’ gallery of international stakeholders that have profited immensely from Chávez’s largesse. They will also be pushing not only for maintaining the status quo, but the continuation of Chavismo through the 2012 elections. In addition to Cuba, these also include Russia, China, and Iran (including Hezbollah).

    What this means for the Venezuelan opposition and U.S. interests will be the subject of future blogs, but, for now, all eyes should be on the political machinations in Caracas that will determine Chavismo’s foreseeable future.

  8. @#62
    maybe u should stop defining urself as a hypocrit by insulting others while claiming u r been insulted urself… pal.

  9. @#62
    did u forget this comment of yours from June?
    Every comment u post contains insults & attacks so u can see why u don’t lend credibility to ur own statements … pal

    “…democracy” and “freedom” of speech that they demand from Cuban government, yet themselves do not practice.
    And, I’ll have to point this out tomorrow again, because their relentless profanities and attacks on other people expressing their opinion will continue.
    After all, that is what hypocrites do. Talk a lot about one thing, but do the opposite themselves…”

  10. “Anomino” since you like to shorten words to mere letters, do you know what this means: STFU ??

  11. Never mind, I looked “perl” up. Here is the definition:

    World English Dictionary
    Perl (pɜːl) [Click for IPA pronunciation guide]

    — n
    a computer language that is used for text manipulation, esp on the World Wide Web

    So, is someone giving computer language to pigs? No entiendo.

  12. @#62 & #63
    who is we … pal?

    “…“patriotic act” could not be more of a nazist law, in fact it even surpasses much of what Hitler and Mussolini did in their short lives…”
    Please post proof to support this statement of yours.

  13. I could remind those who ask silly questions, to what I have said to them a million times in these past few years (last time just the other day, for those who CAN read):

    it is not the system that is good or bad, it is the people.

    And for those bad people the system does not make any difference. They will turn every system into a dictatorship if that will suit their goals.

    “patriotic act” could not be more of a nazist law, in fact it even surpasses much of what Hitler and Mussolini did in their short lives.

    Yet it is a law of a country that sells itself as the “first” democracy of the world (as in the “best”).

    Yet, as we all know, usa is not even among the first ten in terms of democracy. It has more prisoners than any other cuntry in the world per capita and absolutely. It has draconian laws that suppress and violate some of the most basic rights the same nazist gulag usa pretend to “defend” and “fight for”.

    Just this morning, we can read in the newspapers explosive statement from the Human Rights Watch: The worst and by far most numerous violations of human rights in Libya are committed by the REBELS, not by Gadaffi.

    On whose side is the nazist gulag?

    On the rebels’ side.

    So, let us think twice before clapping and rooting for “some kind of pragmatic capitalism” because so far so bad.

    11 years later, the puppet president of Afghanistan just burried his own brother killed by the taliban. The toothles and illiterate goat screwers who were armed and trained by, of course, the nazist gulag usa.

    And the list goes on.

    My the most recent favourite is Haiti. It would apparently take 1 billion of euros to reconstruct the country, yet, two years later, not a cent is given by the “some kind of pragmatic capitalist” societies to alleviate the human drama (what is that jerk clinton really doing for Haiti, even he himself has no idea) on the island, but it is perfectly okay to spend 400 millions per day on a lost imperialist war in Libya now in its’ fourth month and with no end in sight, while the rebels are raping even their own women, bomb their own civilians and kill each other.

    All that under the protection of the hypocrite from the “west”, who are “helping” them to “fight for democracy and freedom”.


    Get a grip “capitalists”. You are THE problem of this world. You and your lies and deception. And crimes against the humanity.

  14. Post 54 is another fine example of ignrance I am pointing out constantly.

    It is easy to embrace capitalist brainwashing propaganda and repeat it ad nauseam without having to employ one’s own brain. After all, making one’s own independent conclusions is hard work, and it requires skills, including reading skill, and intellectual capacities way above those of average person.

    Shame because the effort would help to those who currently merely copy and paste, because they cannot do any better with their modest brain power, to understand the economy, social disciplines and fine differences that make them differ.

    For the difference between socialism and capitalism are actually quite subtle.

    A fact obvious to those who can read and, more importantly, process and understand what they read.

    Just as the difference between an insult and an observation of a fact sometimes is.


    Perls to the pigs.

    Ok, go back to your copy and paste now. Better than that cannot be expected. Not in a million years.

  15. LC:
    U r right, located next to the fake moon’s landing studio; parking lot left of “K” building.
    Which is another one of our “friend’s” statements. How u notice the time lapse pattern between his postings?

  16. albert, you and I know that the Osama Bin Laden is alive and well at the top secret US base on Mars. At least that’s what Fidel and Damir tell us.

  17. Last one for now #49
    I am sure u remember this gem of urs

    “…Now osama, obama that is, bin barack is using cartoons to convince us how they had “marines” and “specials” storming the house and killing osama bin laden.
    Well, for one, Pakistanis who live in the area are already telling to the journalists that it is impossible because they know the people who had lived in the house, and are now presumably dead, and not one person is even close to resembling osama bin laden. They say that what happened there was just a usual fancy usanian show for the masses.
    Brainwashing propaganda of a dictatorship in crisis. Nothing else …”

  18. Good point Love Cuba … just lets wait & see what the answer is to that one, wake me up when something good comes across =)

  19. @#49
    “… What would you expect of a primitive immigrant from non-english speaking background. Many even today still speak with their fathers’ accent, even if they were born in the usa.
    But the lack knowledge goes from a generation to a generation. It is the only thing that we know it is passed on no matter what conditions are …”

    Remember this one … pal?.
    Still wondering why u have no credibility or why u get no respect?

  20. Someone should really inform Damir, and any other die-hard communists or socialists out there, that China is more capitalist than America, and in a bad, not good, way. It is closer to the capitalism America knew in the 19th century, where unions are brutally suppressed, the government is extremely corrupt and in bed with the giant monopolies and gangsters who run it, the environment is being destroyed without a care, and there is practically no government social safety net. But worse, the Chinese have yet to have the freedom Americans always had to express their opinions and fight for a better future.

    So China demonstrates perfectly how capitalism can lead to great economic growth, but how awful a dictatorship can be. It seems communists turn out to be ruthless capitalists when they get the chance. Why is that?

  21. @#49
    “… Insults are the best admission of defeat and stupidity …”

    Ur statement …

  22. @#49 53Dmir
    In case u wonder why u r not earning any credibility points & feel like u are not been treated fairly … remember this one?

    Junio 29th, 2011 at 05:56
    I am honoured every time someone confuses me with other people who seem to have more common sense in their brains than all the primitive and rude supporters of the team “yoani”.
    Insults are the best admission of defeat and stupidity. When you run out of arguments, and that is the easiest thing if you are supporter of the team “yoani”, the only thing left to say is insults and swearing.

  23. @#49
    What’s ur point is?
    U r quoting someone else’s point of view while u r … paraphrasing quoting someone else, ur ending once again makes me wonder if u read what u post … pal.
    What I see u do is drawing conclusions/judgements from other people’s opinions, u distort facts & u quote other’s words or work after “capricious editing”
    I am glad u still have ur head & thoughts while enjoying the freedom to express urself given to u by far better people than u, be thankful of that priviledge because is not an entitlement.

    “… Still have my own head and thoughts to express, rather than simply copying someone else, like those uneducated losers here somewhere…”

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