CHINA COULD CUT OFF FISH STICK EXPORTS

Aid to Puerto Rico will just have to wait

Just over a year ago China recorded a major public relations victory in the Caribbean by unveiling a mega plan to rescue Puerto Rico after Hurricane Maria left the island in ruins on September 20, 2017.

Now it risks alienating everyone in the region by threatening to cut off his or her fish sticks. The unidentified ocean product made to look like a stick is, like beans and rice and johnnycakes, a major staple to the people here.

“Why catch and clean a fish when I can buy frozen replica right there at the grocery store?” asked one woman who insisted that her family could not survive without the frozen facsimile.

The Chinese figured that with little effort they could make new friends and make Trump look bad. The President and his staff were chronically slow in coming the aid of what is virtually an American colony. Readers will recall the footage of the President merrily tossing paper towels to traumatized victims of the storm. Racist overtones were as thick as an oil pipeline.

“China has been quick to expand its sphere of influence in Africa and Southeast Asia,” said a respected public official in San Juan, “and the Caribbean is ripe for investment and exploitation. “We have seen what happens when a culture sells off its natural resources for trinkets and modern conveniences.”

Thousands of families lost their homes when Maria landed her vicious right cross. Residential areas are still suffering. Transportation is still not back to normal. Blue tarps are still covering thousands of homes, especially in the central mountains.

“This obvious grandstanding by an enemy of freedom will in no way detour our plans for the complete recovery of the island,” said a Trump appointee on the ground in Puerto Rico. “If China thinks she can showcase our impotent response to the disaster and insensitivity to human suffering they’ve got another think coming.”

It gets uglier: In late 2017 the Red Cross had collected 71 million dollars for Puerto Rican relief and yet the agency said it did not have the money to help the island’s inhabitants. Then earlier this year “friends in the Congress” granted lucrative contracts to US firms to provide food and shelter to Maria’s victims. Despite the transfer of funds little has actually been done, especially for the poorer residents.

“When I was born I was so surprised I didn’t talk for a year and a half.”

– Gracie Allen

Filed Under: Reflections on Disorder

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