Cuba Cracking Down on Entrepreneurs

I continue to believe that the best way to take down this regime is ending the embargo and flooding Cuba with the most basic goods of civilization:

President Raul Castro issued a stern warning to entrepreneurs pushing the boundaries of Cuba’s economic reform, telling parliament on Saturday that “those pressuring us to move faster are moving us toward failure.”

Castro has legalized small-scale private business in nearly 200 fields since 2010 but has issued tighter regulations on businesses seeing as going too far or competing excessively with state enterprises. In recent months the government has banned the resale of imported hardware and clothes and cracked down on unlicensed private video game and movie salons.

I once had high hopes that this Castro would be better than the last. Remains to be seen, I suppose.

Cuba Moves Toward Markets

What is happening in Cuba? Long-term loans of farmland, for one:

The Cuban government, in its most dramatic reform since Castro took over for his ailing older brother Fidel three years ago, is offering private farmers such as Fuentes the use of fallow state lands to grow crops — for a profit.

The most interesting sentence of this great story:

They are paid in cash, which Fuentes appreciates, and they are not told what to plant.

Seems such a basic thing, so I wonder what self-described socialists honestly think on the following question: Do you have to believe that farmers need to be told what to plant in order to be a street-credible card-carrying socialist?

If central planning means anything, doesn’t it mean someone in a position of authority over the farmer telling him, if nothing else, what to plant? If people shouldn’t be trusted to arrive at the most socially beneficial price for a good, why would they then be able to produce the most socially beneficial amount of corn/wheat/vegetables?

Is Raul Castro perfecting socialism? Is he abandoning it?