Thursday, August 16, 2018

Cuba and the Media

As the President of the United States attacks the free press, it is interesting to see a parallel discussion going on in Cuba. Granma reports on the government's argument for the press' role in the national debate over constitutional reform. "Freedom of the press" obviously does not mean reporting on whatever you like without government intervention.

Instead, it means "building consensus." The way this is described is to collect opinions and explain how they will be evaluated, presumably to give people confidence that the final decision--which will be made by the Communist Party--is considered consensual. The point is "blocking the possibility that a private monopoly re-emerge in Cuba's media sector." The media's job, then, is to serve the state by getting buy-in. That is the "decisive role" it will play.

I am curious about the private monopoly reference and what it might have to do with the leadership change. It seems like calls for freedom of the press actually reflect some fear that it might actually happen.


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