I know that the two page spread that was in Granma encouraging you to start your own small businesses, and pay some taxes and levies came as a bit of a shock, since you have not had to think about any of that stuff. EVER! I recall one of my brilliant professors relaying to me the story of how cubans are like aristocrat children with doctors, and accountants. They never have to worry about where the money for medical and education is coming from, all they know is that the government has promised to provide to them, and that is all that matters.
I guess that’s alright. Only… Now the government really needs your help. It may not have been supportive of those who wanted to start their own thing in the past, but the thing is, if it to continue to provide medical and education for all Cubans, SOME Cubans are going to have to step up and at least try to help, yes?
If you are selling something, from what I have read (or providing a service like Coco Taxi), you are required to pay a 10% levy to the government, and another 25% of your income also has to go to your “social security” which will later be your pension fund. This may not be how your grandparents who were in the revolution did things, but thing are not getting cheaper, and the world is not moving slower. I can assure you, in South Africa post 1994 when the government realized that it could not REALLY provide free education and healthcare to the people, they felt exceptionally bad, but they are making strides to getting to a point where the poorest of the poor in our gifted nation will finally be able to go to school gratis.
It will be a cold day in hell when Cubans will have to pay for healthcare and education, and that is a remarkable thing. With the trade blockade, and hostility from across the pond, you can at least feel proud of the fact that no Cuban is starving, and now, the average citizen has an opportunity to make even more money than they could have ever made (at the moment average monthly income is $20.00)
So don’t feel daunted by all theses numbers, all these percentages… If you need any help answering questions, I am pretty sure that there are avenues you may use to get those answers.
signed: Enchanted in Miramar