Social Studies

Explain the advantages and disadvantage of interdependence and independence for Cuba.

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Universal literacy and a good education for all with one teacher for every 10 Cuban students, compared with one per 15 in the United States.Excellent free healthcare system which attracts patients from the US and elsewhere for treatments ranging from drug dependency to melanomas, generating more than $40m in revenue. Infant mortality is lower than America's and Cuba has twice as many doctors per 1,000 patients as the US.There is very little serious crime.A rich sporting life in schools with promising children given the chance to become well-rewarded professional athletes and emulate the efforts of their world-renowned Olympic medal-winners and sporting stars.There are few neon signs and advertising billboards, no McDonalds and no foreign newspapers or satellite TV except in the grander hotels.ARGUMENTS AGAINST: Grinding poverty where half the population survive on less than $1 a day. Good gardeners in Miami can make $20 an hour.A pitiful transport system. Perfectly adequate roads served by a completely inadequate public transport which leaves the verges lined with desperate hitchhikers spending hours to accomplish quite short and simple journeys.Repressive regime which has at least 400 political dissidents imprisoned for up to 20 years. Homosexuals are severely harassed. Restrictions on freedom of speech, assembly and movement.Being obliged to listen to the Great Leader's notoriously interminable speeches. Castro holds the UN record for the longest speech in the General Assembly - 4hrs 29min - though people at home were surprised at his brevity. His last domestic speech was a mere 150min long, prompting rumours that he must be ill. 

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