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LIBRA (Sept. 23-Oct. 22): Beauty lies in the eye of the beholder. Sharing of holiday gifts, treats, light and libations will bring great pleasure. What please your most, however, are the smiling faces of family members. SCORPIO (Oct. 23-Nov. 21): Throw another log on the fire. Kick back, bask in holiday warmth and indulge in creature comforts. Feel free to attempt something different or exotic; you can tweak old traditions to reflect your current values. SAGITTARIUS (Nov. 22-Dec. 21): Those stockings on the mantle held some lovely treats. You shine the brightest when entertaining others. Holiday celebrations and nostalgia may bring you closer to the most important people in your life.

CAPRICORN (Dec, 22-Jan, pointe shoe brands blog 19): You won’t need to stand under the mistletoe to steal a kiss from a special someone, You have much to be grateful for, so be sure to show your appreciation, Gifts may guide the way to new hobbies and pastimes, AQUARIUS (Jan, 20-Feb, 18): Santa Claus knows who’s been naughtyor nice, Little tensions lurking under the surface need to be overlooked for the next few days, Be appreciative of attempts to compromise, PISCES (Feb, 19-March 20): Handle fun-filled holiday outings without a dose of humility, You deserve every gift and smile, There’s a sparkle in your eyes that invites others to join in the fun, and a sense of magic in the air..

IF DECEMBER 25 IS YOUR BIRTHDAY: Put career plans and financial strategies into motion within the next 3-4 weeks and you’ll find that the universe is delighted to grant your every wish. You might not be able to judge your own abilities clearly right now, but the advice of others could help guide you to prosperity. Plan on a romantic holiday or vacation in March, when your mood turns to love and fun. New friends and acquaintances should brighten your life in June, but if you want to make a major decision or commitment, earn more money or swing an important business deal, tread water in July and wait until August to take the plunge. AMX-2014-11-20T19:00:00-05:00.

What is it about Cuba that makes reasonable people take leave of their senses? The United States maintained full diplomatic relations with the Soviet Union throughout the Cold War, Richard Nixon and Henry Kissinger, hardly a couple of peaceniks, opened the door to China, History argues powerfully for engagement pointe shoe brands blog as the best way to deal with repressive, adversarial regimes, Yet hard-liners insist Cuba must be treated differently, Visiting the island might change some minds, I went to Cuba 10 times between 2000 and 2004 while researching a book, “Last Dance in Havana.” Each trip gave me more regard for the Cuban people — and less for the Castro regime..

The Cubans I met were energetic, ambitious, well-educated — and thoroughly stifled by a gerontocratic government that ruled through a combination of calibrated repression, impenetrable bureaucracy and tropical whimsy. What was permissible today might be outlawed tomorrow. I remember once reading a decree listing hundreds of occupations that citizens had briefly been permitted to practice as entrepreneurs — working for themselves, not the state — but that were again being put off-limits. Among them was “birthday party clown.”.

Cuba is much poorer than it should be, given its abundant human capital, This is almost entirely due to abysmal economic theory and management; communism, as the rest of the world has realized, is no way to create wealth, But antagonistic U.S, policy has provided the Castro brothers with a convenient scapegoat — and a rationale for repression, One afternoon, back pointe shoe brands blog when Fidel Castro was still large and in charge, I heard The Bearded One speak to a Havana auditorium filled with young athletes, Amid what was basically an extemporaneous paean to patriotism and physical fitness, he worked in boilerplate references to the bloqueo, or blockade — the U.S, trade embargo — and the relentless “aggression” of the hegemonic great power to the north..

For more than 50 years, the Castro government has told Cubans that such luxuries as freedom of expression and assembly unfortunately cannot be granted because of the constant threat from the United States, which sought to destroy the Cuban revolution and erase its accomplishments in areas such as education, medicine and sports. I’ve met few Cubans who swallowed this line uncritically. But I’ve met many, including bitter critics of the regime, who believed U.S. policy was counterproductive if only because it gave the Castros a nominal reason for clinging to power.

If he follows through on Wednesday’s agreement to establish full diplomatic relations, President Raul Castro will essentially be abandoning this time-tested line of argument, Which suggests he must be pretty desperate, Indeed, the Cuban economy is so moribund that the government has been forced to permit a once-unthinkable expansion of the private-sector economy, Cubans can now legally buy and sell property, and entrepreneurship — while still limited — is encouraged, The reforms may be tentative pointe shoe brands blog and half-baked but they reflect a grudging acknowledgment that socialist principles won’t put food on the table..

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