One Million New Cuban Barbers?

Tuesday, September 14, 2010
According to the BBC:

Cuba has announced radical plans to lay off huge numbers of state employees, to help revive the communist country's struggling economy.

The Cuban labor federation said more than a million workers would lose their jobs - half of them by March next year.

Yet, this year, the Castro regime's most revolutionary -- no pun intended -- economic reform has been to allow a limited number of Cubans to rent state-owned barbershops.

So will there be one million new Cuban barbers?

Maybe the Castros are planning a new Cuban "cultural revolution" -- similar to the one in the 1960's, where state security would round up long-haired hippies, vagabonds and political "undesirables" and force them to get haircuts.

Sarcasm aside, here's the kicker.

MSNBC further reported:

According to Communist party sources who have seen the detailed plan to 'reorganize the labor force,' Cuba expects to issue 250,000 new licenses for self-employment by the close of 2011, almost twice the current number, and create 200,000 other non-state jobs.

That means the Castro regime will allow another 250,000 of its most well-behaved citizens the "privilege" of renting state-owned barbershops. As for the inefficient Cuban state creating 200,000 other non-state jobs -- that's an oxymoron in itself.

So what about the other 750,000 Cubans? Better yet, what about the other 11.5 million?

Why not just give them the freedom to choose their skills and enjoy the fruits of their labor?

Essentially, because we've seen this self-employment charade before -- it's not about reform, it's about survival -- there's a big difference (and will be the subject of another post).

One thing is for sure, there will soon be a shortage of clippers.