Saturday, April 21, 2007

Socialist Central Planning

Socialist Central Planning

Havana 21st Century

Thursday, April 19, 2007


Try the water that Cubans are dying for. It's made in Cuba as fast as you can drink it. Pooppeeyea contains all the microbe nutrients not found in water anywhere else in the civilized world. It won't take too long after you've had a bottle before your gonna know it was Pooppeeyea!

Wednesday, April 18, 2007

More Salmonella Cases

More Salmonella Cases

Traveler rating:
Varadero Beach: Hotel Villa Cuba: "Anywhere but here!"
raider415, Burlington, Ontario Sep 19, 2006

My experience with this property took place in:

August, 2006
Would I recommend this hotel to my best friend? no way!

My ratings for this hotel are:
Value 1
Rooms 1
Location 1
Cleanliness 1
Check in / front desk 1
Service 1
Business service 1
I recommend this hotel for:

I do not recommend this hotel for: Young singles, An amazing honeymoon, A romantic getaway, Girlfriend getaway, People with disabilities, Older travelers, Great pool scene, Pet owners, Families with young children, Families with teenagers, Tourists.

I selected this hotel because ... Beach / Sun, Museums / Cultural / Historical sites
My age: 25-34
Traveling group: Spouse / significant other
My visit was for: Quality time with family
stayed at Villa Cuba in 2002 with some friends. Had I written a review then, I would've given it five stars. I enjoyed it so much, that when my family planned a trip to Cuba for this year, I recommended it immediately and without hesitation. That was a costly mistake.

Villa Cuba is a beautiful resort. The ocean is breath-taking. If you are lucky enough to remain healthy, it could be a wonderful vacation. Unfortunately, the week that I went, the food was contaminated with the Salmonella bacteria. My family, as well as several other guests in the hotel (the doctor told us) became violently ill. Sadly, when the going gets bad, so does Villa Cuba. The staff ignored us and showed no concern for our well-being. Although they knew that we were terribly sick (the manager came to the rooms with the doctor), they offered no comfort. We were still required to buy our own water and fight the maids for toilet paper (I was tipping 10CUC for every roll we got). The foods the doctor recommended -- apple juice, grilled chicken, etc, were not available in the resort. As a result, we essentially starved for 7 days.

Upon returning to Canada, I was treated in the hospital. At first, the doctors had a hard time believing that it was food poisoning, because the symptoms were so bad and lasted so long. However, the test results confirmed Salmonella. The symptoms were likely exacerbated because we were starved and severely dehydrated.

I'm not writing this review to be nasty -- as I said, I went to Villa Cuba in 2002 and had a good enough time that I opted to return. However, the mark of a good resort should be the way it responds when things do not go well, and in this case Villa Cuba failed miserably. It's possible to go, stay healthy, drink lots and have a great time; but in my opinion, it is not worth the risk of facing the horrible consequences if things do not go well.

Please, choose another resort.

This TripAdvisor Member:
Liked: Nothing
Disliked: Salmonella
Tips/Secrets: Don't eat!

And Still More Salmonella Cases

Traveler rating:
Varadero Beach: Hotel Villa Cuba: "Run from this place!!!"
novillacuba, Canada Aug 25, 2006

My experience with this property took place in:
August, 2006
Would I recommend this hotel to my best friend? no way!
My ratings for this hotel are:
Value 1
Rooms 1
Location 1
Cleanliness 1
Check in / front desk 1
Service 1
Business service 1

Contracted very severe food poisoning on the first day. The staff was far from helpful -- we were left to fend for ourselves, buying bottled water and crackers from the hotel store, even had to buy our own toilet paper (after using the 10 rolls we had brought from home).

I wouldn't go back here if I won a free ticket. 12 days later, the toxins are still in our bodies. I will think of Villa Cuba with nothing but regret.

If you insist on going, don't eat the food. The eggs are raw.

Sickness at this hotel

Submission date: 2006-11-10 - Date of Stay: October 2006
Submitted by: Mike - From: United Kingdom
Type of Traveller: Young Couple - Age Group: 26 - 30
Sickness at this hotel
We have stayed at the Ledra beach before but we will not be returning. The first two days were ok, then there was an outbreak of sickness. My partner was hospitalised and was very ill. the rest of our holiday was ruined. Health inspectors were brought in from the UK and parts of the hotel closed, kitchen staff were fired and supplies thrown away. Do not go to this hotel, you will have the worst holiday possible.
Was this review helpful? Yes - No

Pillows Smelled Like Vomit

January 2007

We got a cheap deal and flew from Vancouver to Varadero.

First impression of the hotel was it wasn't nearly as nice as the other ones we passed on the way to our hotel. Our room was not very nice at all. We had two small beds that we pushed together to form one decent sized bed. The linen, pillows and blankets all smelled like vomit (no, I'm not kidding!) it was awful.

The staff were incredibly rude and completely unhelpful. We were tipping at the bars and restaurants and still received the worst service we've ever experienced.

The food was terrible and I survived on rice, pasta and mango for most of the vacation. I got a little sick while I was there (food? water?) and when I asked the maid for another roll of toilet paper, I was told "No" and that she "would bring some later". She did come back about 3 or 4 hours later with one roll for us.

The only things that saved this vacation were the excursions that we booked, the awesome beach and the fact that we had our travel agent switch us to a better hotel after 3 nights at this dump.

I would never recommend the Club Amigo to anyone.


Melia Varadero Rachel
March 2007

My husband and I just returned from a trip to Cuba for our honeymoon. We spent 10 nights at Melia Varadero.

THE ROOM: We stayed on the fifth floor which was OK except that at least one elevator was down at any given time so it could take us a while to get up to our room or down to the lobby. The room had a king bed. The mattress was on it's last leg and hurt my husband's back. He would wake up in the morning and say that he had slept but not rested. Also, the sheets were constantly coming untucked and we would wake up in the morning in a nest of sheets. Our room was facing the tennis courts and golf course, away from the beach but since the peninsula is quite narrow, you have a water view looking either way. The water pressure in the shower was great.

THE DRINKS: It was nearly impossible to get ice in a drink at the resort. I guess that Europeans don't like ice in their drinks but even when I would ask for ice water I would generally get only one cube of ice. The water tasted horrible and was never cold enough. The Cuban beer (Cristal) was pretty good, a light beer, also never served very cold. We really liked the lemon and strawberry frappe which is essentially a slurpee, you could get it in the Cafe Guantanamera (open 24 hours) or at the pool bar. We ordered several mojitos and they were never made exactly the same, some tasted like turpintine, others tasted like a good drink. We did like the Coctel Las Palmas which you can get from the Piano Bar (Las Palmas). The bartender there (watch for the sideburns) was pretty good. However, there was A LOT of cigarette smoke in all of the public areas so we didn't spend much time there.

THE FOOD: The food was horrible. There was a huge variety of food, but it nearly all disgusting. My husband and I lived on bad french fries, scrambled eggs and ice cream. The buffet was the WORST! The hot food was not kept hot and the cold food was not kept cold. They served brussel sprouts, peas and other weird vegetables at breakfast time. Sometimes there were black beans in the buffet - sometimes they were tasty, sometimes they were horrible. The food was really quite bland. Our travel agent had told us to take some spices but there is nothing that could have saved this food. There was always something labeled bacon in the buffet line but it was never actually bacon. Once it was a veal cutlet and the next day it was a weird white sausage and the next day it was sweaty ham lunch meat. The worst part of the Cafe Guantanamera was the service. You had to practically jump on the waiters to get a fresh drink and they all congregated up by the bar and ignored people's needs. I ordered the salad in the Cafe Guantanamera 5 times, every time it came out differently. The desserts were questionable, either not cooked enough or cooked too much. The Paella Shack was good a few times but we got tired of our hands getting all dirty from cleaning the shrimp and clams. Also, the guy in the Paella Shack tried to sell us lobster for our paella (12 pesos). He told us it was fresh, that his friend the fisherman had brought it in that day. We declined his offer but later found out that it was not lobster season and there is no way there could have been fresh lobster. It was insulting to be asked to pay for food after paying for an all inclusive hotel. Obviously this was one of those black market deals. The international restaurant was pretty good (Fuerteventura). We ate their twice and they probably had the best food in the place. The steak house steaks were very tough with nearly no flavor. The service wasn't good in there either. The seafood restaurant (Trinidad) had very good garlic shrimp the first night we went there, the next time we went it seemed they had forgotten the garlic in the garlic shrimp. The Chinese restaurant (Oshin) was probably the worst Chinese food I have ever had but it tasted delicious because it was a break from the monotony. When we got back to the room after eating the Chinese food I had to spend most of the evening in the bathroom. We went next door to the mall and bought a can of Mr. Potatoes (Think Pringles but made in Malaysia). They cost 5 Canadian dollars but were pretty tasty compared to the hotel food. The airplane food that we had on the way back to Vancouver BC was the best food that I had on the entire trip. My husband and I were actually dreaming (like starving people) about food the whole time we were there.

EXCURSIONS: We went on the Catamaran trip to Cayo Blanco. They took us out into the midst of some 2-3 foot high waves to snorkel. There wan't anything to see and the current/waves were too much for most of the group. The food at the island was really bad. They veggies were out of a can and totally over cooked/mushy. The lobster had been stewed in something that was red but had no flavor. Our crew was supposed to get us out of Cayo Blanco by 4:30 but we didn't leave until 5:30 (despite the fact that all of the passengers were standing, waiting to go) because our crew was too busy drinking. Our crew got drunk and stopped swabbing the deck which caused 4 different women on the boat to fall on their behinds. For over 200 Canadian you should be able to get a trip where the crew will at least look out for the safety of passengers.

We also attempted a trip on Jet Skis - what is called Boat Adventure. This trip was 38 pesos per person (about 50 canadian). They put my husband and I on a "jet ski" (bathtub with an outboard motor) that had no steering. It also had no power. My husband said the motor was 25 ccs. We decided not to go on the trip after the guide told us he expected a five peso tip per person. We found that anything we went on that was tourist geared was generally a let down and very expensive.

The best parts of Varadero were the tennis courts and the beach. If you want to ride a motor scooter while you are there be sure to bring your driver's license because otherwise they won't rent to you. Don't miss the DuPont Mansion on the other side of Melia Las Americas. The third floor bar is lovely with great service and good drinks and the views are fabulous. Watch out with the horse drawn buggies. They told us it was 10 pesos for the ride but once we got to our destination found out that it was 10 pesos per person.



By A Yahoo! User from Canada

Overall: 2
Service 2
Cleanliness 2
Value 2
Last Visit: 2
February 2007

I Got back Friday Feb 2/07....It took me 4 days to find the energy to write a review because 17 people on our resort got sick. The food is terrible, the hotel needs works, and since its in transition to a new hotel, I think they ALL just don't care. Many of us on the plane back took note that we all got sick, and we were all on our 3rd or fourth day without eating. I got sick the worst with fever, and many others flu symtoms. Please spend the money and get into a real 4* hotel...this place is a dump, and the money is a rip off...we had to go next door to Tuxpan to get a better exchange rate. It is a JOKE, happy to be home in -15C weather.

Another Ruined Honeymoon

Traveler rating:
Varadero Beach: Sol Sirenas-Coral Resort: "very bad hotel"
rachmb, Gloucestershire Oct 12, 2006

View larger photo

My experience with this property took place in:
September, 2006
Would I recommend this hotel to my best friend? no way!
My ratings for this hotel are:
Value 1
Rooms 2
Location 5
Cleanliness 2
Check in / front desk 1
Service 1
Business service 2

I recommend this hotel for:

I do not recommend this hotel for: Young singles, An amazing honeymoon, A romantic getaway, Girlfriend getaway, People with disabilities, Older travelers, Great pool scene, Pet owners, Families with young children, Families with teenagers, Tourists
I selected this hotel because ... Beach / Sun, Museums / Cultural / Historical sites, Great food / Wine, Shopping, Other
My age: 25-34

Traveling group: Family with young children
My visit was for: Honeymoon

Please Please please do not visit this hotel.. We read the reviews before we booked and some were good and some were bad so we decided to chance it. It was my husbands and mine honeymoon and we decided to take our two young sons with us aged eight and nine. From the moment we got there we were constantly pestered by the restaurant workers and bar staff for our childrens clothes always when we were eating our meals or drinking etc. After four days the childrens new trainers were stolen and were left to wear flip flops for the rest of their stay. When reporting this the staff did not want to know and were very unfriendly towards us. The next day my sons new Liverpool fc shirt was taken from the room. when we complained again they said that threre staff were not thieves perhaps we stole it, they then laughed and glared at us and made us feel very intimidated. The police also did not want to know and discarded us like trash. On our final days we discovered more clothes were missing from our sons ie jeans and t shirts. when complaining for a third time my husband demanded to know why they kept stealing from us and why they kept treating us badly when we complained. Once again they laughed at us and made us feel very intimidated. My husband then told them that he did not like the hotel and couldnt wait to leave their country . They then got angry and told him that he insulted their country and would be locked up in prison for this. Ourselves and other guest overhearing this could not believe it and were disgusted.

Away from the stealing the hotel constantly ran out of drinks especially lager even though the staff were drinking it behind the bars. The food was average but birds were in the clossed buffet restaurant pooing on the tables whilst you ate your meal. they were also always eating the food. when complaining about this nothing was done. The workers expected tips all the time or else they would serve you last, they appeared more interested in the germans and canadians who kept throwing large tips their way. To top thing off all of us caught ear infections from the pool and came home very poorly. I also suffered terrible anxiousness because of the laughing and glaring. This is the worst hotel I've ever stayed in and the people have no respect for the holiday makers who spent good money on this hotel. So please do not go here and have your holiday ruined too.

I Became Very Ill

Traveler rating:
Paphos: Iberostar Ledra Beach Hotel: "Won't be back"
Irine, scotland Nov 27, 2006

My experience with this property took place in:
October, 2006

I arrived at the Ledra beach with my sister on the fourth of October and stayed 7 nights, so I was still there on the 8th of October. The hotel does not deserve the four star rating. Rooms are very clean and the housemaids are lovely. Ours was an angel. However, the rooms are very shabby and in poor repair with faulty showers and badly done 1970s tiling and corroding plugs in the bathrooms. Four beds, only two of them made up were crammed into our twin room and the chairs and small table shown in the brochure were not here. We had to negotiate our way around very cramped conditions because of the beds. The balcoy furniture was cheap and shabby and the window boxes to the side were empty of plants and full of cigarette stubs. The food was good in the restaurant was good for a buffet and the staff in the restaurant were very nice, especially the manager Michaelis. However, the restaurant itself was lacking in style and servicble rather than pleasant to be in. The receptionists were nice but a bit stand offish, except for one, who was very helpful. There was virtually no evening entertainment and the one 'show' we attended was so crude and in such bad taste that it really put us of. Although the animation team worked hard the 'all inclusive' program was poor. A joke, in fact. We spent more money than we had expected to because we went out in the evening a few times. I became very ill in the early hours of
the eleventh with extreme sickness and diahorrea, the day I was scheduled to go home. I phoned my travel agents nhelp line and was given little assistance except to be told to phone a clinic, pay for treatment and claim it back from my insurance. Big help as I was due to leave. The hotel receptionists would not make eye contact with me as I tried to settle up towel and safe accounts and I became aware that the problem was rife throughout the hotel. In spite of the fine staff I would not in my wildest dreams recommend this hotel to anyone!!

Tuesday, April 17, 2007

Sue Your Tourist Agency

Ants Crawled On Us All Night

Ants Crawled On Us All Night

Board Basis: All Inclusive
Date of Holiday: Sep 2006
Tour Operator: First Choice
Submitted By: evadanit
Overall Rating: 3/10
Comments: Me and my husband have just got back from Cayo Coco in Cuba, and it was the worst holiday I have ever had. (it was our honeymoon).

There were ants all over my room, trailing from one side, to the other, and in my bathroom, all over my toothbrush and in the sink (I have pictures)Reception said that a maid would be there in 5 mins to spray it, I waited for 1 hour, then my husband phoned and the receptionist then said that nobody can come out tonight, so we asked if we could be moved rooms, and they said no, so we had to sleep with ants crawling all over our beds, on the floor, everywhere. It was disgusting. I have proof of this, as I filmed it!

We noticed that the pillow cases weren't being cleaned on a daily basis. The towel rail kept falling off the wall.

The seals on the bottled water were broken, so they were filling old bottles with tap water! The food was disgusting, the eggs were runny, and the pork was red in the middle.

There was scum around the pool, someone was actually writing his name in it! I got a terrible ear infection, as there was too much chlorine in the pool, so I had to go on antibiotics.

There was hardly any umbrellas, so I got really burnt and had to go on hydration tablets and get some lotion.

There was a path leading to the beach, which was under water, which I am sure it is sewerage, as it never dried up, even in 30C heat! We couldn't swim in the sea, as there were too many jellyfish, swarms of them in 20s! people were throwing them!

They had 3 restaurants, the Italian, looked lovely, but the food was really cold, really well laid out, but stone cold, like it came out of the fridge and heated up in the microwave. The seafood restaurant, the fish was shriveling up where it had been sitting there too long. They were watering down the Coke and I saw them filling up a bottle of wine, with something out of an oil container, then putting the cork back in!

We tried to get hold of the rep on the last as we wrote down all the complaints, but he was not there.

On the other side, the rooms were big, the Air conditioning worked, and the beds were actually comfy! It's like going to a Butlins holiday camp, but less entertaining.

BIGGEST Problem Was the Mosquitos

Note attribuée :
Cuba: Melia Cayo Santa Maria: "go somewhere my suggestion"
expensive, Plymouth,Devon,UK 9 juin 2006

Mon expérience dans cet hôtel a eu lieu en :

mai, 2006
Je recommande cet établissement pour :
Rapport qualité-prix
Chambre (qualité, confort)
Personnel / service (service d'étage, assistance spéciale)
J'ai séjourné dans cet hôtel avec : époux(se)/partenaire, jeunes enfants, membres de la famille
Je recommande cet hôtel pour : seniors, familles avec jeunes enfants, familles avec adolescents
But de mon séjour : vacances prolongées
J'y retournerai : sûrement pas !

I went to this hotel for 2 weeks from the 21/05/2006 with my 2 children and my parents,all flights now go from Gatwick via Manchester,this is absolutely hideous if you use Gatwick as your airport of choice as it means sitting on the tarmac for lenghty periods of time.

On arrival we were allocated to building 19 the airconditioning is barely adequate and not all maids do towel sculptures;although minor it hints at not all guests being treated the same.
We did try the bike hire and requested 5 bikes however out of 12 only 4 were useable the rest had punctures,broken chains etc.

My husband and 13 year old son went out on an X14 and the rudder fell off my husband had to retrieve it and fix it back in place before going back to shore when this was reported it was met with a disinterested shrug. So beware!!!
When we went to try the Archery there was only 1 bow and 1 member of staff for 18 guests we were expected to wait over 1:5hours for a turn.

The food was always cold,fish and meat are cooked on the same griddle/utensils,poor selection of food,very little salad/vegetables,watered down drinks.I think its appaling that the solution offered to the numerous complaints was to send us to the other hotel(Sol) which is a cheaper hotel in the brochure.

The BIGGEST problem was the mosquitos in view of the fact that i have 2 children i feel Thomas Cook had a duty of care to warn us about this problem.I would not have gone if i had known, as it is a Health Hazard, mosquitos carry lots of diseases,the hotel staff reported this was a common problem and i can only imagine it will get worse as the wet season progresses.Also the hotel provides no escape from the mosquitos in the evenings other than your room or a piano bar that provides nothing but repetive recitals of loud piano playing which allows no conversation.
In conclusion i would not go here again or recommmend it to anyone
I Must Have 300 Bites

Note attribuée :
Cuba: Melia Cayo Santa Maria: "not a 5 star resort..."
Membre de TripAdvisor, coventry England 6 juin 2006

Mon expérience dans cet hôtel a eu lieu en :
mai, 2006
Je recommande cet établissement pour :
Rapport qualité-prix
Chambre (qualité, confort)
Personnel / service (service d'étage, assistance spéciale)
J'ai séjourné dans cet hôtel avec : époux(se)/partenaire, jeunes enfants
Je recommande cet hôtel pour : seniors
But de mon séjour : vacances prolongées
J'y retournerai : sûrement pas !
just returned back from the melia....... have to say was not impressed...
After sitting on the runway for 2 hours at manchester airport having not been told it flies via manchester from Gatwick... so the overall flight time is actually 12.5 hours... then waiting on the tarmac at the airport for 1.5 hours to go through passport control...
eventually got there to find a mini bar in the room with nothing in there... they gave you 1 bottle of water a day unless you bribed the man stocking the bar...
the pool and the beach are absolutely beautiful.... but that is about it.. the food is repetitive and boring if you are not eating by 7pm there is nothing left... ie they don't replace what has been eaten....
3 people over there actually caught food poisoning ( over at the sol ) and had to be moved to our hotel.....
but the worst thing about the holiday was the fact that you were literally in the middle of nowhere..... surrounded by swamps...... so to say you get bitten by mosquito's is an understatement......... i must have 300 bites on my body and i don't normally get stung....
4 or 5 of my friends over there had to go and have injections off the doctor to stop them from scratching themselves to death.
there is nowhere to go off the resort i mean nowhere... the nearest town is about 30 miles away........

it is by far the worst holiday i have ever been on...... have been to mexico which is 10 times better.....

would only recommend this holiday if you are over 60 and literally don't want to move off your hotel...

final thought 5 star pool, beach and room......... entertainment and food 2 star

Worst Experience Ever!

Worst Experience Ever!

Traveler rating:
Havana: Cubanacan Comodoro: "Health Hazard"
A TripAdvisor Member, London Dec 11, 2005

My experience with this property took place in:
November, 2005
My ratings for this hotel are:
Value 1
Rooms 1
Cleanliness 1
Service 1

I traveled to this hotel with: spouse/partner

My visit was for: extended vacation

Would I stay at this location again: no way!

This is the worst holiday experience we have had. We arrived at the hotel after a three hour delay from Holguin. As we entered into the hotel compound we saw that the hotel has 4* and were very excited as we did no research on our hotel. The reception staff were very frosty apart from the bell boy who wanted his tip for delivering our suitcases. We were assigned the bungalows and were delighted as we walked on the bridge going over the lit swimming pool. As we arrived to our bungalow we met another couple who were on the trip. He happily asked us if we had seen our room we said no, he then said have a look at mine with a smile on his face. As we walked in we were disgusted the floor tiles must have been 50 years old with the cleaners cleaning the central parts of the floor and leaving the corners with vast amounts of dirt. There was a cockroach in the cupboard, and dirt in the bath. We were rather petrified sleeping that night- and our room was not any better. The following morning the others complained about hairs in the bed and one woman had been bitten which was quite evidently by bed bugs. Even after the cleaners had been in- they still did not wipe up mess from spilt tea. The Breakfast was also awful and the milk tasted like water, one person commented that the bread had mold on it. Over- all it was the worst experience of our life. My advice to you all is Dont Do it!!

Cuban Credit Card Scams

A Prisoner Exchange

A Prisoner Exchange

I advocate that the US government arranges an exchange of prisoners with Cuba. We will release Ana Belén Montes and the Miami 5 to Cuba if the Cuban government releases the several hundred journalists imprisoned in Cuba solely for telling the truth. They will be released into US custody here in America. This will save these innocent journalists from being killed in Castro's gulags and at the same time be a fitting punishment for the just mentioned Cuban spies who will be forced to live in the worker's paradise.

Libertarian Party Opposes Civil Liberties

Libertarian Party Opposes Civil Liberties

The LP and RLC are actually against liberty on *every*
civil liberties issue and *every* economic liberty issue!
For example, the LP and RLC claim they're for the
individual right to use marijuana, have freedom of
religion, freedom of speech, freedom of lifestyle, etc.
Yet the LP and RLC are actually against *all* of those
civil liberties, because they would allow local
governments to use a certain trick that would enable
them to make arbitrary laws against marijuana, freedom
of religion, freedom of lifestyle, etc.

Specifically, the LP and RLC would allow local
governments to make such arbitrary laws, as long as
those local governments don't use the word
"government", and instead call themselves by the
euphemism of "landowning companies", and as long as
they don't use the word "laws" or "local charters",
and instead use the euphemism of calling them "lease

Yet, some land-owning companies control more territory
than some municipal governments, and the LP and RLC
would allow further expansion of the powers of local
governments/landowning companies - so, the LP and RLC
are actually in favor of allowing local governments to
make arbitrary laws that violate civil liberties, such
as use of marijuana, freedom of religion, freedom of
lifestyle, etc. So, the LP's and RLC's stands are contradictory on
*every* civil liberties issue.
For the same reason, the LP's and RLC's stands are
contradictory on *every* economic issue, because they
would allow local governments/landowning companies to
make arbitrary laws restricting economic liberty, by
such means as licensing laws (called by the euphemism
of "lease conditions"), high local taxes (called by the
euphemism of "rent", which is really a form of local
tax, set at an artificially high level, due to having
no principled limits on the power of local government),

As a result, the LP's and RLC's opposition to
economic liberty promotes poverty and oligarchy:

Besides endorsing violations of civil liberties and
economic liberty at the level of local government, the
LP and RLC also endorse gross violations of freedom of
speech at the local, state, and national level, because
they endorse concentrated control of the TV and radio
airwaves, which are a natural resource like land, not
produced by human beings.

Such concentrated control of TV and radio leads to
control over the information that citizens are exposed
to, which affects every political issue, including every
civil liberties issue and every economic issue.
Because the LP's and RLC's views are contradictory on
*every* civil liberties issue, and *every* economic
issue, it makes no sense for Jeffersonian Democrats to
ally themselves with the LP or RLC, unless or until the
LP or RLC start taking a libertarian stand in favor
of civil liberties and economic liberty,
So, the fundamental question about legitimate property
rights in land and natural resources affects *every*
civil liberties issue, and *every* economic liberty
issue. That basic question of legitimate property rights is
not about advocating land taxes as a long-range
solution- after all, Thomas Paine's approach does not
involve any use of taxes at all, and neither does
Benjamin Tucker's. A land tax should be seen as a
transition measure, moving toward a solution closer
to that of Paine, Tucker, or John Stuart Mill.
The most important question for libertarians is about
addressing the fundamental issue of legitimate property
rights, which affects *every* issue of civil liberties
and economic liberty.

So, the DFC chooses to keep a distance from the LP and
RLC, unless and until they become libertarian in their
views on civil liberties and economic liberty.

Mike O'Mara

Club Amigo - No

Club Amigo - No

Economics and Wealth 101

Economics and Wealth 101

Let's define different stuff that most people never give a second thought to in their busy lives. Wealth is all the things that we either want or need to exist. It's your bathroom with the toiletries, your car and the rest of the house, the cloths and everything you own. But where does it all come from? Ultimately, it comes from the labors of your mind and body somehow manipulating the planet earth to help facilitate the creation of all this stuff that everybody wants. Why? Because as any Cuban will tell you toilet paper is preferable to tree bark or Granma. I may be a proofreader and not myself create the newspaper that lands on your door each morning. But my efforts help ensure this valued packet of current information is correct and credible. So the question begs. Why are Cubans lacking wealth?

Would you create more wealth using YOUR labor if you or the government owned the results of your labor but paid you 50 cents per day for it? Now think about applying your labor under this system for 49 years. There is no chance for advancement or more wealth to comfort you in your final years. Socialism gives you the right to other people's labor output....and they the right to yours. But middleman Raul Castro is one of the few Cubans who are obese as well as dressed in fancy tailored suits.

So now you can clearly see why 11 million Cubans are sitting around waiting on a tip from a tourists rather than do some work and create a bit of wealth for themselves and therefore their nation. It's because they can double their state salary anytime they get a buck. A stinking dollar! However, not everyone is poor. The owners of this company-store operation, Raul Castro and his gang, profit quite nicely and possess vast reserves of wealth complete with mansions, ranches and castle in the countryside around the world.

I give them credit where credit is due. They have been brilliant manipulators and controllers of information during the early days of the information age right up until recently. But they have crashed head on into the Internet where they have lost all credibility and therefore power. We now command the high ground because using the Internet we can show the evil that Raul's regime has done as well as explain these simple matters of economics. We will warn people thinking of traveling to Cuba that there is not adequate sewage treatment or fresh water available to survive healthfully. We can also use the Internet to ask exiles to not send remittances now so we can put the final squeeze or Raul, Inc. and run him out of Cuba.

Monday, April 16, 2007

Tourist Doesn't Get It

Tourist Doesn't Get It

The testimonial that follows is written by a very ill tourist who smelled the sewage, drank it from the tap and ate food prepare in areas contaminated with it but she thinks the rice is what got her sick. She is now on antibiotics and still very ill. Please don't go to Cuba now to holiday. They have no safe drinking water and sewage is everywhere.

Thomas Cook Books Another Disaster

Board Basis: All Inclusive
Date of Holiday: Aug 2005
Tour Operator: Thomas Cook
Submitted By: Miss LJ Taylor
Overall Rating: 1/10

I WILL BE HONEST! I appreciate some people may think the hotel was wonderful, but I can honestly say it was a 0/10 for me.

First impressions of the resort was BASIC. I have been to Mexico, Dom Rep & was really looking forward to spending x2 weeks in sunny CUBA. I couldn't wait!!! Friends had been to Cuba (not this hotel) and praised their holidays, so I was really excited.

The journey there on the plane & coach was good. After checking in, it was a good 5 minute walk from the main reception area to our apartment block, which gave us a chance to see what the hotel was really like.

The hotel was spread out & set in a large area of land. However it was starting to get run down & could do with a good lick of paint, however the landscape gardening between the apartment blocks was always cared for well by the gardeners (with their trademark straw hats). They were always polite and would say hello.

We reached our nice but BASIC room. I just had to keep reminding myself that the holiday was 3*. Whatever you do, don't go with high expectations..... The room had x2 double beds, dressing table, bathroom with bath & shower over head. The room was fairly clean but was just very worn out. The furniture had scratches all over it & the cushioned seats in the room had stained covers. This may have been spilt drinks or anything else.... - but I made sure that I did not investigate too closely. We did have a sea view (JUST) but we had wasteland directly in front of our room, which appeared to be a cut through for staff on a regular basis. However you could see the sea!!!

Overall impressions of the room was OK, it was not in a noisy area which we had requested and again was BASIC. Just don't go if you have high expectations.

The maid service was excellent, they would always work around you in case you wanted the room to be done later etc.. Definitely worth the tip!


There was a small adult area pool, a few minutes walk from the main pool area. This was a very quiet area with a small bar and appeared popular for couples, however it was always busy. The main pool areas consisted of x1 child area (hardly used, I saw adults in it more than children) but looked nice enough for kids to use if they wished to do so. Then very close by was a separate pool, however this was always really, really dirty. I think it was because it gradually sunk in depth, so people would often paddle in it, which meant rubbish (leaves, plasters, hair & general debris) would get trodden in. Not nice to see in front of you as you are having a nice swim!!! Then there was the main pool which had a pool side bar in the middle. It was always busy as it served food (chips, burger & hotdogs) which you would help yourself to & drinks. It had the same barman most days who was a lovely chap, however they really needed to have some more staff as it would get busy at times. The orange squash there was lovely!!! See there’s one good thing I have said - definitely a 10/10 for the squash!!!

FOOD:- I'm really sorry to have to start moaning again but the food was awful! I love my holidays & appreciate that you have or you get to sample some odd food (some good, some bad). Myself & my partner are not a fussy eaters at all! I will try most things, however this place was awful. Breakdown as follows:-

AM'S:- Breakfast in am's was ok. Standard type of thing as normal, fry-up type food, toast, croissants/cakes & fruit. Otherwise you could go to snack bar & order a toasted sarnie.


You can choose from a snack @ snack bar (sarnies, well toasted sarnies - they don't do all on board advertised, the whole 2 weeks was the same. Only ham & cheese, tuna and then chicken).

Pizza restaurant on the beach - lovely. Could not complain/fault it. Service was gr8 but always busy so you have to wait sometimes for a seat.

Diner restaurant on beach(can't remember the name) - you can choose from burger & chips, hot-dogs & chips, toasted sarnie & chips, fish & rice/chips or they would have a special out on a buffet table which would often consist of a stew/curry looking dish with rice/chips/salad etc. YOU WANT TO HEAR SHOCKING - One day we were eating & at the main grill area of the kitchen which you can see (it pokes out into the restaurant area), whilst the chef/cook is flipping the burgers, there was a chap/maintenance man painting the archway above him. I am not joking - it really happened!!!! I had a good look in the kitchens whilst stood near grill area, you could see that plates were stacked up on shelves with burger baps & salad on. I guess they think it's easier to get the food out to customers when a plate is already made up, but surely this is not hygienic.

Buffet - never went, I'm sure was like the evening buffet however. Did not touch it!

Pool bar - burger/hot-dog & chips - you help yourself.


BUFFET:-Like with most all-inclusive restaurants you could only eat at some of the restaurants once per week. This meant eating at the buffet restaurant or as I did on a few times buying crisps etc. and snacking on them. The restaurant had a variety of things and again like most places nothing seemed to go with everything. It was all very strange. There was around 6 tables of buffet food in total if I re-call?, and the same day would have the same old things. Chips, fried chicken & pork, all sorts of fish, curries, rice (DON'T TOUCH THE RICE....I WILL TELL YOU LATER), vegetables & pasta etc.. There was a massive salad cart & x2 grills with fresh fish & meat cooked for you. These grill areas would do anything from all sorts of fresh fish to meat (steak, pork, chicken). Downside was queues (often busy) & BE WARNED the chap on the fish grill counter is a ladies man, he definitely tried hard for those tips. Bless him! No he was a nice chap but would come out with all the lines trying hard for those tips. Most days I would stick to getting some meat from the grill area (be warned they stick loads of oil on everything - they drown it without asking you) and get some salad or chips. The waiters/waitresses were always helpful and would get you drinks etc.. & bring to your table.


There were 3 ''Al 'A Carte restaurants'', one was CUBAN which was fabulous. Service was superb, it was clean, meals were nice - I could not fault it really. 10/10 for sure!!! But down side was we were only able to eat there x1 per week.

Around the end of my 1st week, beginning of 2nd week, I got really sick. Symptoms included sickness, diarrhea, severe stomach cramps, fever. This happened AFTER eating in the buffet restaurant. I had fish (from grill bar) & rice. It was only after I was ill that I started to think...the rice was on the buffet tables in a bowl and was just being topped up by the chefs. When I had the rice & fish the rice had a mixture of cold & warm chunks. I picked at the rice, ate a little and just continued to count the days until I went home. Can you believe that - you spend nearly £1400 + for you & your partner to go to the Caribbean, only to wish half-way through the holiday it was home time. This meant the 2nd week of my holiday was spent feeling ill. I just could not shift the symptoms. Constant stomach cramps, sickness etc.. I lost weight which was gr8, but definitely not the best way to diet! We just counted down the days!!!!

BARS/DRINKS:- You could grab drinks from pool bars, pizza bar, beach diner, snack bar (it says 24 hr but you never got snacks 24 hr & the drinks often ran out (non alcoholic as well as alcoholic) & bar in main lobby area of the hotel complex. The funny thing was for days at a time they would be out of lemonade or cola, but there was always stack fulls to buy in the supermarket! Of course they would not buy it from there, they would just make us wait. Some nights its was awful, you'd get the round in and would have to go back asking what else people wanted as they would run out. It was a regular thing you would just not bother attempting to order a drink as they often were out of what you drank. When I think back to it now,. I just can't believe it. The managers one night were out with champagne toasting the workers and dishing out glasses of fizz to guests, which made me laugh.


There was an awful sewage smell in the reception/snack area
. I had read reports on it, but did not think it would be that awful. People would say it was sewage, the others would say it was stagnant water. I'm not sure which, but all I know is that it stunk to high heaven. You would be in the reception area & smell it. You would be in the snack bar and smell it really bad. You would go to the buffet restaurant & smell it. It was horrible. Not the sort of thing you want to smell first thing in the morning.


LOTS OF THEM. Remember to take your sprays etc. however I did and still got bitten. The hotel was trying to help and help by spraying something. I can only explain it as masses of grey smoke sprayed into the air. You would be taking a walk to the bar & ten you would hear it. A mini train looking thing would be coming up behind you spraying all this stuff. However it did help. But it seemed like they only done this every other day.

BEACH - The beach was fantastic! Sea was lovely and always warm and clear. Beautiful! The beach consisted of a watersports area at one end which was always busy, then as you walk along you would go past the restaurants/bar areas which again was busy. But if you continue walking you would get to the best part of the beach which hardly nobody went to. I'm not sure it was lovely. Peaceful and quiet, yet you can still wander down to get a drink a few minutes away but it's like you get to have a section of the beach all to yourselves. It really was lovely...but you can't spend your time at the beach 24/7.

Overall I would NOT go back to the hotel & it has sort of put me off CUBA altogether.

Before we left we got chatting to people and many people had the same problem. All the same type of symptoms, some lasted a few days but some were like me and just could not kick it! Some were moved to other hotels after complaining (resort in general was cause) but I just could not be bothered. I thought why move when the next one could be exactly the same. The rep had told people this hotel (being Tryp Cayo Coco) was the best hotel on island! So why?? chance moving in case??? However when the day to go finally came, we met up with a couple who had moved & they said they got moved to a lovely hotel. Typical hey - it seems the Rep was telling lies.

Once I got home I was still feeling poorly - 3 weeks had past since I got ill and I was still not feeling too good. I went to Doctor's only to be told that I had SALMONELLA. Nearly 4 months later, I am still on antibiotics to try & clear it. All because of TRYP CAYO COCO. Not even the gorgeous beach makes me want to go back to that place.

I have requested the complaints procedure & I am still waiting! I know I have left it late to complain as just wanted to get home, get better and forget about TRYP CAYO COCO. But I think of all those poor people booking their holidays with their hard earned money and think somebody else could have the horrible holiday I had! Hence, why i have been so honest in this review. Ooppps I know it's been a very long review but wanted you to know about everything the GOOD (not much) & the BAD (lots).

I can only tell you my experience of TRYP CAYO COCO, others may disagree with me? Please make sure you read reviews before going any where, otherwise you may waste £1400 like I did.


Saw a Rat

Bed Bugs?

Bed Bugs?

Three Hair Cuban Cuisine

Three Hair Cuban Cuisine

-The food was lacking, and my fiancee found 3 HAIRS in 1 MEAL!

- Quote from Hotel Nacional de Cuba tourist

Equality Beach in Cuba

Equality Beach in Cuba

Bring Lots of Bug Spray!

Bring Lots of Bug Spray!

Glassy Eyed Raul 2/07

Glassy Eyed Raul 2/07

Welcome to Hotel Firetrap

Welcome to Hotel Firetrap

Yummy Bucanaro Breakfast

Yummy Bucanaro Breakfast

Sunday, April 15, 2007

Cuba's a Raw Deal

A Tourist's Cuisine Recommendation

A Tourist's Cuisine Recommendation

"I would caution u when eating the meat. One of our group members found a metal wire which was the size and therefore looked like a bent 2" nail in his hamburger (the hamburger he got from the cafeteria). We went to the Public Relations Desk and made a complaint, and they did seem very concerned about the wire."