Cold Take

This may have been obvious to everyone, but I recently put 2 and 2 together on why communism was considered evil in capitalist countries like the US.  In short, colonialism.

The Cuban Revolution is the perfect example of why a rich, capitalist country would oppose communism.  For some background, pre-revolution Cuba was heavily influenced by US companies.  Many companies received preferential government treatment and had their interests protected by threat of force by the US military (including actual force, at times). In an unconscionable conflict of interest, the head of the CIA and his brother were on the board of directors of a United Fruit, a company that benefited greatly from local government nepotism, and committed atrocities in the name of protecting profits. These companies were primary dealing in commodities such as fruit, sugar, and oil.  They were so called enclave economies that extracted natural resources but did not contribute to the local economy.  It’s hard to look at this period of history and see the US as “the good guys.”

When Castro came to power, he seized the property owned by these companies and distributed the land among Cuban farmers.

The US wanted to maintain the ability to monopolize markets and protect that monopoly with their military, political and economic clout.  Communism concentrates government power.  It’s simply easier and less risky to influence regularly held democratic elections among competing factions than it is to risk international scandal or war by covert military action against the indefinite, single-party state.

Markets and commodities have changed but the mechanism is still the same.  It’s not just Chaquita banana anymore, but Coca-Cola, Nike, McDonald’s, and countless others. Communism was the only credible threat to US companies expanding their interests without limit.  You can argue about the merits of capitalism vs the merits of communism, but really it boils down to different groups trying to monopolize money and power.  Same as it ever was.


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