We remember Tito Puente (1923-2000)

Maybe it was those cold winters in Wisconsin but I spent many hours of my life listening to the music of Tito Puente.

He was born on this day in 1923 and became quite a musical pioneer, mixing musical styles with Latin sounds and experimenting in fusing Latin music with jazz.

Ernesto Antonio “Tito” Puente was born in New York City, the son of Puerto Rican immigrants and already playing music by age 13.

Tito Puente won 5 Grammys, including “Homenaje a Beny“, a tribute to Beny More in 1978.

1991: And then Yeltsin said that it was over

(My new American Thinker post)

It happened fast, and Boris Yeltsin made it official 25 years ago this week:

After a long meeting between Soviet President Mikhail Gorbachev and President of the Russian Federation Boris Yeltsin, a spokesman for the latter announces that the Soviet Union will officially cease to exist on or before New Year’s Eve. Yeltsin declared that, “There will be no more red flag.”

It was a rather anti-climactic culmination of events leading toward the dismantling of the Soviet Union.

It was a stunner for those of us who had grown up during the Cold War. After all, who would have believed it during the Korean War? Or the Missile Crisis of 1962? Or when the USSR invaded Afghanistan at the end of 1979? Or when “perestroika” was supposed to save the system in the late 1980s?

For many of us, it was hard to believe, but it should not have been.

The USSR was in fact a great failure. It was a superpower that could build nuclear weapons but not manufacture a basic tractor. It could subsidize Cuba but could not keep basic foodstuffs on its local shelves.

The collapse of the USSR was also a tribute to a bipartisan foreign policy. From President Harry Truman to President George H.W. Bush, our willingness to identify the enemy and stand tough was too much for the USSR to survive.

Twenty-five years later and are we teaching the real story of communism in our schools?

P.S. You can listen to my show (Canto Talk) and follow me on Twitter.

Memorial Day: I remember young Nathan Aguirre

Like most of you, I will enjoy a day off, a cheeseburger and watch a little baseball.   At the same time, I will remember a young man named Nathan Aguirre who died in Iraq.

I know Nathan’s parents. His dad and I were church ushers. His mom is a beautiful person who is now working with other families who’ve lost sons in Iraq.

Nathan Aguirre is a real hero.   Remember him and his parents today!

P.S. You can hear my show  ( CantoTalk  ) or  follow me on Twitter   .

Sad to see Caracas today!


(My new American Thinker post)

Once upon a time, such as the late 1990s, Caracas was one of the great cities of Latin America.

It didn’t have tango like Buenos Aires or a carnival like Rio but it had all of the signs of a cosmopolitan modern city. I remember a couple of business trips down there and it was a great city. I recall an Italian restaurant across from the hotel that made you feel like it was the Venezuelans who really invented lasagna and pasta.

That was then and this is now. Like the once-great city of Havana, Caracas is now one gigantic mess.

We just learned from our friend Dr. Carlos Eire that there’s even a shortage of Coca Cola:

As the Normalization Circus continues to gain strength,  the Castronoid colony of Caracastan is going into an ever steeper death spiral.

It seems that  the final unfolding of the Bolivarian Revolution has arrived.

It’s dreadful, as dreadful as dreadful ever gets…. as dreadful as it was in the island nation formerly known as Cuba some fifty-odd years ago.

In that Cuba of long ago it only took about two years to reach the implosion now being experienced by Venezuela.

And in that long-dead Cuba — now known as the Castro Kingdom — the implosion has been going on for over half a century.

Can Venezuela find a way out?  Perhaps.  But only if King Raul’s storm troopers are sent back home immediately

Oh, the wonders of 21st century socialism!

But don’t expect to find many journalists blaming the Venezuelapocalypse on socialism.

No.  All of these calamities are due to falling oil prices, “mismanagement,” and political turmoil caused by those selfish bastards who can’t appreciate socialism.

A few years ago, a Latin American friend went to Cuba and took lots of pictures of Havana. My parents nearly cried as they saw some of the photos of the city. It was like seeing pictures of a son or daughter wasting away and with zero self-esteem.The elegance of Havana was gone. The decadence of communism was all around.

My guess is that many Venezuelans must be having the same reaction.

Nothing is perfect, but Caracas was one of those cities that you were happy to visit. It had fantastic cuisine and a very modern infrastructure. You could see people working hard but enjoying life as Venezuelans know how to do. Like pre-Castro Cuba, the people were hardworking, elegant, and knew how to throw a party!

Memo to the thousands madly in love with Bernie Sanders: Take a trip to Caracas and you will see what “Sanderismo” looks like.

And make sure you bring a roll of toilet paper just in case the hotel or your host runs out!

P.S. You can listen to my show (Canto Talk) and follow me on Twitter.

Obama, Ho & Che

U.S. President Barack Obama, left, and Vietnamese President Tran Dai Quang shake hands at the Presidential Palace in Hanoi, Vietnam, Monday, May 23, 2016. The president is on a weeklong trip to Asia as part of his effort to pay more attention to the region and boost economic and security cooperation. (AP Photo/Carolyn Kaster)

President Obama’s last year in office has been marked by two awful photos.

The first one was in Cuba with Che in the background.   It caused an outrage as many of you remember reading in this blog.

President Obama’s latest photo will upset more than just Cuban Americans. In other words, most Americans remember Ho Chi Minh and the 60,000 troops lost in Vietnam.

President Obama did not have to stand in front of these tributes to Che and Ho.

He could have told the leaders of Cuba and Vietnam that such displays were unacceptable.

So what does it say about President Obama?   It tells us that he is ignorant of history and not too concerned about the families of those killed in Vietnam.    He is the Obama who sat in Reverend Wight’s church all of those years!
P.S. You can listen to my show (Canto Talk) and follow me on Twitter.

Argentina’s President Macri scores again

(My new Amercan Thinker post)


Messi is the fútbol player from Argentina who plays for Barcelona, one of the world’s greatest fútbolistas and teams.

Macri is President Macri, the center-right president, elected in early December.

It is Macri who is dominating the front pages lately.

Yesterday, President Macri proved that he is on the right track.  He shut down the government’s support for Telesur:

The pro-business administration of Argentina’s president, Mauricio Macri, will cut its funding of a regional television network started by the Venezuelan government in 2005.

The country is pulling out of Telesur, a self-styled leftist alternative to mainstream media, because of a lack of “pluralism” and being shut out of financial decisions, the Communications Ministry in Argentina said. “Argentina was a partner prohibited from sharing our view,” Hermann Lombardi, the communications minister, said in a radio interview. Telesur was a pet project of Hugo Chávez, the former Venezuelan president, who envisioned a strong socialist voice to counteract what he perceived as unbalanced news coverage from major broadcasters like CNN’s Spanish service.

In addition to Venezuela, sponsor countries include Bolivia, Cuba, Ecuador and Nicaragua.

Relations between Argentina and Venezuela have deteriorated since Mr. Macri’s center-right government took office in December 2015. His predecessor, Cristina Fernández de Kirchner, had maintained strong bonds with Mr. Chavez.

Hooray for President Macri!

Continue reading HERE.

A Tale of Two Cruises…


Because they’ve been so-o-o-o-o much better off since Obama/Kerry lifted that evil US embargo on Castros’ Cuba paradise is just washing them out to sea, dontcha know…

PITTSBURGH (KDKA) — A “Legends of Pittsburgh Cruise” ship rescued 16 Cuban migrants who were found on a makeshift raft in the Gulf of Mexico Saturday afternoon.

Pittsburgh Steelers linebacker James Harrison posted pictures on Instagram, showing the ships. His agent Bill Parise told KDKA that he snapped the pictures from his estate room.


Harrison also tweeted: “We just stopped for this boat with 16 people in the middle of the ocean. Waiting for coast guard…” he said. “16ppl, wild!!! @ Gulf of Mexico.”


The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette reports the US Coast Guard in Miami, which said that it was not involved in any rescue effort, made clear that Mr. Harrison was merely a photographer, played no role in the rescue and would likely not mingle with the migrants.

“There was a football player that was aboard the cruise ship who took some really good photos, but he wasn’t involved in the actual rescue. The Carnival cruise ship would never allow a passenger to engage with the migrants,” Petty Officer Jon-Paul Rios said today.

He added that the migrants will be dropped off at immigration at the ship’s next port of call, which is Cozumel, Mexico. […]

Let’s see how long before Obama/Kerry sends them back to Fiddy and Raul.
Perhaps Barry can just take them back himself on his big upcoming visit to the Castro compound…

“El Chapo” and “el rifle”

Joaquin 'El Chapo' Guzman.

We learned today about a rifle in El Chapo’s collection.

According to a news report, El Chapo and Fast & Furious may have met years ago:

“A .50-caliber rifle found at Joaquin “El Chapo” Guzman’s hideout in Mexico was funneled through the gun-smuggling investigation known as Fast and Furious, sources confirmed Tuesday to Fox News.

A .50-caliber is a massive rifle that can stop a car or, as it was intended, take down a helicopter.

After the raid on Jan. 8 in the city of Los Mochis that killed five of his men and wounded one Mexican marine, officials found a number of weapons inside the house where Guzman was staying, including the rifle, officials said.”

How many more of these sophisticated high powered weapons ended up with cartel leaders or their guards? We don’t know but the finding of this rifle raises more questions about a very flawed program and an administration that does not believe in accountability.

P.S. You can listen to my show (Canto Talk) and follow me on Twitter.