I wrote somewhere else that I may be the only regular purchaser of budget clothing in this country who doesn't have a t-shirt with Che Guevara's face on it. And I probably lean further to the Left than 75% of the people on the High Street, though my politics are more complicated and nuanced than my detractors would have it (I threw the only copy of the Morning Star I ever bought into a waste bin when I read something about the latest wonders of the Chinese Communist Party). Che's image has become a capitalist icon now, and principally--the irony is savage--at the budget end of this despicable, dehumanising system; those cheap Che t-shirts in Primark are able to be sold at such "affordable" prices because they're produced by exploited labour in places like India. What would the man himself had made of it? If his book "African Dream" is any indication he'd have been out in the country in one of those beleaguered nations organising revolutionary armies to rise up against their oppressors. Not that killing anybody is any sort of an answer, in my own humble opinion. That just perpetuates the cycle of anger and violence. Was Cuba, in the end, in any better a condition than America? I mean after Che and his buddy Fidel had finished with it?
Well, maybe, actually. We always measure the state of the Cuban revolution by capitalist standards of wealth and the accumulation of useless objects, which is a little silly, really: like saying chalk fails in its purpose because it doesn't taste like cheese. But I'd still prefer to pitch my tent in the United States because at least there they live with the illusion of freedom. And that's a pretty sexy damn dream when you think about it.