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tv   Cuomo Prime Time  CNN  June 15, 2018 10:00pm-11:00pm PDT

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>> anthony: this is the cuba i grew up with. >> narrator: mankind teeters precariously on the brink of a thermal nuclear war. >> anthony: the missile crisis. duck and cover. hide under your desk, kids, cover yourselves with wet newspaper, because we're all going to die. >> narrator: the flames of crisis burn far stronger, fed and fanned by the bitter tirades of fidel castro. >> anthony: and this guy, always in the fatigues, underlining with every appearance that we were two nations in a never-ending state of war. >> president obama: today, the
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united states of america is changing its relationship with the people of cuba. we will begin to normalize relations between our two countries. ♪ i took a walk through this beautiful world ♪ ♪ felt the cool rain on my shoulder ♪ ♪ found something good in this beautiful world ♪ ♪ i felt the rain getting colder ♪ ♪ sha la la la la sha la la la la la ♪ ♪ sha la la la la sha la la la la la la ♪ ♪
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♪ >> anthony: cuba has been sitting here 55 years now, half an hour away, basically giving the biggest superpower in the world the stiff middle finger. 50-plus years of animosity, embargo, rationing, and fidel castro is still hanging on. but recently, there are powerful indications that everything is about to change. we are in a little fishing town. this place is where two brothers go out and fish every morning and bring fresh seafood. >> anthony: okay, humble fishing village. traditional fishing family? >> hugo: yes. >> anthony: what about the sushi? what's going on in this country, man?
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>> hugo: things are changing, anthony, what can i say? my name is hugo. i was born in cuba. i was in one of cuba's most prominent schools when i made a joke about president fidel castro. i was a teenager. the kid that slept on the bunk bed on top of me recorded our conversation and i was expelled from school. my mom said the only choice is for us to leave cuba. i'm a business man. i've lived in miami for 35 years. it's my home base. i come back and forth to cuba. i've been coming to cuba for over 20 years. i mean, cuba is a communist country in economic transition. fidel castro allowed cubans to establish more businesses. there are people that are making money. there are people that have created a tremendous amount of wealth. >> anthony: people with family connections to the states, people tied to the exploding tourist industry, small business owners, taxi drivers, people operating in ever-changing gray areas of what is permissible. how's it work right now?
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if you're cuban, you can sell your property to -- >> hugo: another cuban from cuba. and that's what's happening right now. a lot of cuban-americans, a lot of cubans living abroad are now coming back, and through relatives, are buying property. obviously, somebody has touched this building with some kind of investment. it's renovated. it seems to be like a hotel. somebody bought the building and turned it into a little hotel. >> anthony: however you feel about the government, however you feel about the last 55 years, there aren't any places in the world that look like this. it's utterly enchanting. >> hugo: it's very seductive. >> anthony: there is no doubt in my mind that somewhere in the opposite of the four seasons hotel chain, they're looking at the seafront and thinking, you know, "one of these days," you know? cruise ships. what happens then? >> hugo: well, look -- >> anthony: is this an inevitable march of progress? am i being a snob? >> no, no, you're being very realistic. that's the concern of most cubans. i wouldn't mind seeing one or
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two starbucks along havana, but i'm hoping we're not going back to 1958, with the majority of cuban companies were owned by american corporations. >> anthony: right. >> hugo: i have got to believe that cuba will want to research some of the value that represents, you know, the hearts and soul of the cuban people. >> anthony: last time i was in havana, a meal at a paladar would have been rice and beans. now, sushi, a certain sign of impending apocalypse. that's good. >> hugo: yeah. ten years ago, this restaurant would have never been allowed. not only because private businesses were not allowed, but the external influence that you're seeing. remember, this is a country where chewing gum or listening to the beatles were prohibited. i don't think we all need to have twitter every day. one things i love about coming to cuba is the fact that i can put my iphone away. who cares.
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look what we have around us. i hope cubans that continue to have access to free information, they will still want to preserve the family times. ♪ >> anthony: tourists have been coming to cuba for some time. predominantly europeans, many of them men of a certain age, looking for, how should we say, company. now it looks like americans looking to live out fantasies of "godfather 2" will soon be able to do so. and it's all still here for them. but there's new stuff, too. this is certainly new.
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fabrica de arte, the hottest spot in havana. a nightclub, performance space, art gallery, highlighting artists, musicians and deejays from around the world. questlove is scheduled to deejay here tomorrow night. >> inti: it's like a big bag that all the arts can fit inside. >> anthony: what is going on here? i asked inti herrera and x alfonso, two of the young entrepreneurs behind the place. nothing like this ever existed before. did the government bureau of arts help you? >> inti: at the beginning, we had subsidies from the ministry of culture. even the building, we asked for the building, because it was abandoned for 30 years. >> anthony: the place is very popular. >> inti: right now, yes. >> anthony: who comes here? >> inti: these people that love art, but at the same time, it's very diverse. >> anthony: it attracts a once unthinkable mix of foreigners
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and locals, that enjoys the actual support of the government. without whom, of course, it couldn't exist. >> inti: our chef here, is part of the art world, you know, here. >> anthony: the ceviche of dogfish with pickled vegetables. loin of pork, pan-seared, with youka and a rift on a traditional orange sauce, with garlic and coriander. >> mmm, good. very good. >> anthony: what do you think's going to happen when the door opens and you've got hundreds of thousands of americans flooding here looking desperately to spend money on anything cuban? >> inti: i don't know, man. we are a small country. we have to adapt to new things. but i think it's a good challenge. >> anthony: i guess i'm asking how do you keep it real when you'll all probably be millionaires in a few years? >> inti: us? >> anthony: yeah. >> inti: you think so? >> anthony: yeah.
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>> x alfonso: [ speaking spanish ] >> inti: it's not our goal in life, but that -- >> anthony: doesn't matter. >> inti: yeah, doesn't matter. we're going to have more factories. >> anthony: more factories. ♪ ♪ online and we'll alert you if we find your social security number on any one of thousands of risky sites. that sounds super helpful. how much is it? well, if you have a discover card, it's free. no way! yes way! we just think it's important for you to be in the know. all right! hey... ewww! everything ok? being in the know is very good. yeah, it is. ooo don't shake! don't shake! ahhh! know if your social security number is found on risky sites. free from discover.
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that you don't think about is very much. counties it's really not very important. i was in the stone ages as much as technology wise. and i would say i had nothing. you become a school teacher for one reason, you love kids. and so you don't have the same tools, you don't always believe you have the same... outcomes achievable for yourself. when we got the tablets, it changed everything. by giving them that technology and then marrying it with a curriculum that's designed to have technology at the heart of it, we are really changing the way that students learn. and i can't wait for ten years from now when i get to talk to them again and see, like, who they are. ♪
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♪ ♪ anthony: havana still looks like you want it to look. or maybe just how i want it to look. ♪ what was once one of the wealthiest cities in latin america left to the elements, left to collapse, were frozen gloriously in time.
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in fits and starts, cuba is changing, but it's not sugar or rum or tobacco or casino gambling that is the new god. [ horn honking ] it's tourists. ♪ all right. so here, chinatown. such as it is. but are there any chinese left in havana? >> jon: no. there's a few new chinese. >> anthony: right. >> jon: at one point the chinese community in cuba was huge, but they pretty much cleared out after the revolution as did most of the russian, jewish immigrates who were here. so the state erected a few quintessentially chinatown gates. mustered the 14 chinese people left and summoned their relatives.
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>> anthony: for more than 35 years, jon lee anderson has been reporting from conflict zones such as syria, lebanon, libya, iraq, and afghanistan. >> jon: i lied about my age and travelled around africa. when i was 13, i told people i was 26. >> anthony: in the early 1990s while researching a biography of che guevara, he and his family moved to cuba and ended up staying for three years. >> anthony: you lived here during the special period, which was not so special. that was the bad times. >> jon: that was the bad time. >> anthony: the russians had pulled out. soviets all done. >> jon: the economy went like this. >> anthony: completely tanked. >> jon: 90%. it just tanked. >> anthony: cuba lost 80% of its import goods which led to widespread hunger, malnutrition, and a nose dive for the already difficult quality of life on the island. >> jon: there was one place where we could buy food which was a soviet-style place with food that was flown in. quite bad food. under fidel's rule, that's the way it was.
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>> anthony: it's like a cargo cult version of chinese food here. dumplings. the szechuan chicken dish that's about as szechuan as, well -- -- i am. what's going to happen? what's next? >> jon: the uptick in tourism after the december 17th announcement, the surprise announcement by raul and obama, in which they said, "we decided to make friends again." the surge in tourism and american interests in cuba is like this. you now have an island where every room is for rent because you can make $30 or $40 a day. that's more than a state employee makes in three months. >> anthony: there will be wealthy hipsters, women in tiny black dresses drinking ironic rifts on the mojito. lobby of the spanking new "w" hotel with [ bass ] in the background . >> jon: yep. >> anthony: and that's within five years. >> jon: yeah, i would say so. >> anthony: will every cuban have an inalienable right to free medical care and education at that time? >> jon: that's what they're worried about. the last time i was here which
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was in 2013, i counted 8 to 10 homeless garbage-eating people in the street. and i thought, "wow, i've never seen that before in cuba." that's something the old cuba, the socialist cuba that could look after all of its citizens would never have allowed. it's allowing it now. this period we're here in, it's the lull before it all hits. the train is coming. it's either going to roar by and they're going to be able to jump on and go with it, or it's going to derail and it will be a mess. all of it's possible. ♪ ♪ ♪ >> rosa: [ speaking spanish ] >> yusimi: my mom is asking me if you would like to taste the rice? >> anthony: oh, it's fantastic. ♪
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like a lot of cubans, yosimi rodriguez lives in the same working-class neighborhood where she was born. >> yusimi: i live with my mom, my sister, my niece. of course i would like to have my own bedroom, but there are people who don't even have a house. >> anthony: you were a translator, is that correct? and you are now a journalist? >> yusimi: i've been writing for "havana times," and then i write also for -- [ speaking spanish ] another independent website. >> anthony: she struggles to eke out a living in an industry where the state firmly controls all media. what subjects in particular are of interest to you? >> yusimi: racial issues? >> anthony: racial disparity. this is something that the revolution promised to address. >> yusimi: their main mistake was to say that they had eradicated racism. just like it could be eradicated just like that. on the street, for instance, policemen, the first people they stop, black people.
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if you're black, you are a potential criminal. ♪ >> anthony: her mom, rosa, prepares a cabbage stew with carrots, tomatoes, and green beans for her, as yuismi is a rare vegetarian on an island where pork is king. oh, fantastic, look at that. and for us, pork marinated in garlic, onion, and sour orange. please tell your mom it's superb, really excellent. [ speaking spanish ] >> anthony: thank you. you have a very highly educated public here, one of the most literate nations on earth. >> yusimi: that's funny, we're highly educated, like you said, but we're behind concerning internet and all that stuff. most the folk have access to only the official media, the official newspaper. if internet comes, and i think the government is trying to delay it. if that comes, many things will change.
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people will have access to different points of view, and i don't think our government wants that. >> anthony: if everything goes well, what will havana be like, what will this neighborhood be like in five years? >> yusimi: you know, having a prosperous society doesn't warranty it is the same for everyone. you know, you see these people who have been able to use opportunities to open businesses, to open successful restaurants. those opportunities are there, but i cannot use them because i don't have money. i don't think it is possible to have a perfect society, but i think it is possible to try. how you like the food? >> anthony: oh, it's delicious. really good. thank you. her salon was booked for weeks, until her laptop crashed this morning. having it problems? ask a business advisor how to get
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circa 1959 and before, of course. american dream machines tricked out, babied, pampered, jury-rigged or simply held together with duct tape or baling wire. ♪ ♪ >> anthony: nice. what's under the hood? >> man: [ speaking spanish ] >> sidekick: v8 american engines. we buy spares. we bring spares from america. >> man: [ speaking spanish ] >> sidekick: all we think about through the week is our machines, our v8 engines.
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you know, car racing in cuba, they love it here as much as they love baseball. >> anthony: whoa. that's serious. los amigos de motor are diehard gear heads. drag racers who for more than 20 years have been defying the law, and escaping the grind of daily life by pressing pedal to the metal and hurtling down the highway faster, faster, fast as they can go. >> sidekick: they just find the best part of the day when there's not so much traffic. hundreds and hundreds of people on both sides of the road. >> anthony: now before it was absolutely illegal. >> sidekick: it's always been illegal. it's only the last couple of weeks that we're going to get sponsorship from the minister of the sports. >> anthony: everything is changing. it's entirely possible that soon you'll be able to order any part, any car, any car in the world. you can have it tomorrow. what would it be? >> sidekick: corvette. >> anthony: corvette. which year? >> sidekick: [ speaking spanish ]
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[ engines revving ] ♪ >> dago: this lunar picnic is only to be seen at night. the grills are painted with this fluorescent painting. it's very surreal. it's a weird sensation. it, like, makes you hungry somehow. >> anthony: along with his creative partner, marco castillo, dago rodriguez is half of los carpinteros, an artistic
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entity whose work is shown and collected all over the world. >> dago: every single grill is a different theme. we have different technology to fabricate and to develop. >> anthony: los carpinteros have managed to stay in rhe government's good graces by widely using irony to make their points. in the brutally and capricious contemporary art world outside of cuba, they are stars. they make a lot of money, but they always return home to havana. looks like we'll be eating well. ♪ >> anthony: tonight it's a party in dago's backyard. ♪ kelvis ochoa has made his
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much-loved pigs head soup with pumpkin, corn, peppers, and sweet potatoes, casaba, and plantain. i saw somebody's house, it was just an ordinary home, but they created their own fast food franchise. they made it look as if it was part of a chain. it was like mr. burger or something like this. >> dago: this place can be a paradise for fast food. >> woman: i hope they don't come here soon. >> anthony: this is my biggest fear is there will be a big glass box of a "w" hotel, and start seeing starbucks and victoria's secret, you know, all of the people who make every place look the same. it would be awful. >> dago: yeah, but we have 50 year lack of money. >> man: right. >> dago: this is a big problem. the people will freak out with money when they have the money here. >> man: of course, yeah. i mean, if there's a $200 million hotel project that's
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sustainable, that preserves the facade of the city, that will get approved first before anything super american, per se. >> anthony: whoa, what's cooking over there? can't forget the whole roasted pig. a few years back, a pretty unthinkable luxury for just about everybody. oh, wow. soup. >> woman: wow. >> man: everything is biological. >> woman: organic food. >> man: they have no money for chemistry here. >> anthony: for, yes -- >> woman: none of the pesticides and the hormones yet. >> anthony: oh, wow. and tamales steamed in the broth from the pig's head soup. life is good. >> dago: yeah, it is. ♪ ♪ ♪
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♪ >> man: i think that our culture is so strong that it's going to take a lot of tourists, a lot of boats -- how do you say -- >> anthony: cruise ships. >> man: cruise ships. it's going to take a lot of cruise ships to dissolve these ingredients. we're always like this, with or without tourists. ♪ ♪
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♪ leonardo: this is a typical
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street of this neighborhood. houses of wood, houses of concrete. the street is not in good condition. here was the bus station. it's not a bus station anymore. now it's a building. it's a monument of the past. >> anthony: mantilla is a suburb of havana, home to one of cuba's most celebrated writers. >> leonardo: [ speaking spanish ] >> anthony: author of the internationally successful mario conde detective series, padura has been able to portray the daily struggles, the absurdities of life in cuba. it's a delicate dance, and few have been able to replicate it. your hero in the books, does he
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live in this neighborhood? or another neighborhood? >> leonardo: more or less. more or less. >> anthony: happy place to grow up, this neighborhood? >> leonardo: yeah, yeah. i was totally free. >> anthony: i notice a lot of people just hanging out. who lives here? >> leonardo: all kinds of people. doctors, for example. engineers. workers. >> man: [ speaking spanish ] >> leonardo: and people who makes nothing, like that guy. >> anthony: right. >> leonardo: he don't make nothing. >> anthony: how does he live? >> leonardo: trying to find something to do or something to sell. making a small business. >> anthony: cafeteria a la barbeque is only one example of a booming do-it-yourself service industry. ♪
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it's a place where you get a lot of bang for your money. nothing fancy, just delicious. fried pork, plantains. and the kind of silky, deeply satisfying beans that dreams are made of. this is good, good beans. >> leonardo: yeah. >> anthony: you never had a book blacklisted or banned in cuba? >> leonardo: no. fortunately, no. >> anthony: have you been able to say everything that you wanted to say? >> leonardo: i try to be the most honest writer that i can be, and i think that i have said all that i can say. the problem is that we need in cuba a lot of money because it's a very beautiful city, but the people have many problems to live. with the space, with the structure of the buildings. >> anthony: for dessert -- ah, awesome. flan, cooked in a cut down beer can. thank you.
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you're a successful author. you've been around the world. you've traveled? during difficult periods of cuban history, i'm sure, you had many opportunities to live in miami or barcelona or los angeles and yet you stayed in the same house, the same neighborhood. why? >> leonardo: because i like it. i live -- to live in cuba, near to the cuban people, near to the cuban language. for me, it's very important. ♪ >> anthony: yes, the future is here. but the past, too, is everywhere. the buildings, the cars, the gears of the whole system are still largely stuck in time. >> crowd: juana!
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juana! juana! juana! >> juana: [ speaking spanish ] >> anthony: 93-year-old juana bacallao is very much a part of that past. >> juana: [ speaking spanish ] >> anthony: long before the revolution, she was a shining star at meyer lansky's tropicana singing for capone, luciano, you know the names. >> juana: [ speaking spanish ] ♪ >> juana: [ speaking spanish ] ♪ ♪
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>> juana: [ speaking spanish ] ♪ >> juana: [ speaking spanish ]
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>> anthony: cuba is not havana. it's a bigger country than you might imagine, and the road to santiago de cuba, the country's second largest city takes you 12 hours on their less than modern highway system. along the way you see, agrarian cuba, the country in which most cubans lived pre-revolution. ♪ >> anthony: santiago is a poorer city, it's blacker, and unlike havana, the symbols and faces of the revolution still seem to mean something. these brutalist pre-fab worker's housing complexes are everywhere
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here. and at first glance, hell, at second glance, they look like something you'd house animals in. but for many, previously living even poorer, harsher lives in the countryside these offered something new. each group of buildings came with a doctor, a school. still they look about as grim as grim can be. yet, santiago is anything but grim. siboney beach is where locals go on the weekend to kick back with family, drink the best rum in cuba, which means the best rum anywhere, swim hang with family and friends. hola, gentlemen. we'll be needing some vasos. reymel is our local fixer. ruben is in the bar business. sergio rents rooms to the occasional tourist. everybody getting by, making the
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adjustment to private enterprise cuba in their own way. until a few years ago, you couldn't rent or sell, right? >> ruben: [ speaking spanish ] no. >> reymel: a long time ago was allowed to rent house, but no sell and buy. >> anthony: what kind of fish is this? >> reymel: it's a dorado. dorado. >> anthony: dorado, must be good. fresh caught dorado and lobster is on the menu. do they think this is gonna change? i mean, look, we've all been following the news. >> sergio: [ speaking spanish ] >> anthony: right. half an hour away. i mean, they can basically take a boat over for lunch. what do you think americans want? >> ruben: [ speaking spanish ] >> reymel: they have no idea, because never talked to the american tourist before. >> anthony: lookin' good now, man. good rum, cold beer, good fish, good lobster. you'll be needing a blender for piña coladas. >> ruben: [ speaking spanish ]
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>> reymel: if they have, if they have not machine they gonna do it by hand. >> anthony: let me put it this way, my friend. you're gonna be making a lot of piña coladas. i think you're gonna need the machine. ♪ >> anthony: nighttime is party time where everybody it appears, at least from when i was there hit the streets, mom, dads, sis even grandma get well, crazy. used to be, son and trova that ruled the streets this was where those musical styles were born after all, but now it's reggaeton and of course hip-hop. ♪
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>> anthony: vo allain garcia is the leader of the santiago-based hip-hop trio t.n.t., la resistencia. >> allain: we have been making hip-hop for 15 years. which is quite difficult here in cuba, we been in jail three days once just for make hip-hop. ♪ >> allain: definitely it's a change in cuba but i don't think it's because the relation with the united states are getting better. it's because the people just realize we need to change. we still want a kind of society where everyone participates and everyone is determining the future of the society. ♪ >> anthony: so, born and bred in santiago, where the good rum comes from? >> allain: exactly.
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>> anthony: so, tell me, music business in santiago. what, what are you doing? >> allain: music here is more important than a plate of food for people. when it's carnival, sometimes the people doesn't have money for proper food, but they've got money for a jar of beer. and just enjoying that beer in a place with music. >> anthony: how much american hip-hop do you get here? >> allain: we get, actually, quite a lot. it's by friends. someone who came from outside. then when passed to me and passed to my friends, and that's it. it's hand by hand. in the beginnings, in the '90s, we started making hip-hop here and we got a lot of talks. hip-hop came from the states. they're like everlasting enemy of the revolution. >> anthony: right. >> allain: so, you're making a music, a protest music. >> anthony: right. >> allain: so, we've been a couple times in jail just for songs. >> anthony: so, now you can make money performing? >> allain: yeah. >> anthony: you can, maybe, make money selling, uh -- >> allain: cds in the streets. but actually, right now more
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possibilities are coming. when the opportunity to, like, promote the music, when the opportunity to have access to internet, free access, i mean. >> anthony: that's going to be the biggest thing. >> allain: yeah. if you want to spend your holidays properly in cuba, just come down to santiago. we've got a couple things to show to the world. >> anthony: cheers, man. >> allain: cheers, man. por santiago! ♪ this is important for people with asthma. yes. it's a targeted medicine proven to help prevent severe asthma attacks, and lower oral steroid use. about 50% of people with severe asthma have too many cells called eosinophils in their lungs. fasenra™ is designed to work with the body to target and remove eosinophils. fasenra™ is an add-on injection for people 12 and up with severe eosinophilic asthma. don't use fasenra™ for sudden breathing problems or other problems caused by eosinophils.
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♪ >> anthony: hola. >> driver: hola. >> anthony: let's do it. hi, i'm tony. >> george: ah, my name is george. >> anthony: how long have you been driving a taxi? >> george: for more than 20 years. >> anthony: mostly cubans or tourists? >> george: no, tourists. most of them spanish, italy, even people from canada.
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a lot of canadian people. ♪ >> anthony: you're from santiago? >> george: yes, i was born in santiago. i will say it in spanish, santiaguero. i used to live in russia for six years, i studied there. >> anthony: really? >> george: yeah, i was really young and, and i really enjoyed it. >> anthony: oh yeah? 'cause it must be cold there. >> george: no, no. could you imagine the difference cuba and russia? snow, the first time i saw snow. i sent to my mom a lot of pictures. >> anthony: oh yeah? >> george: holding snow, throwing snow. >> anthony: [ laughter ] so what were you studying in russia? >> george: uh, mechanical engineering. >> anthony: that's, so -- you went from engineering to taxi driving? >> george: yes, yes, yes. in 1990, russia left us alone and, uh, we got in trouble with the economy, so i had to change my job. >> anthony: so it looks like the embargo might end, you know, a lot of money gonna start coming to cuba. do you think it's gonna change? >> george: oh, i think that the american businessmen will invest
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in cuba and that will be good for everyone. >> anthony: how about, how about going back to engineering? >> george: uh, you know, that will depend how much they will pay. >> anthony: right. okay. ♪ what next for cuba? something is coming. it will come, from out there, but also from within cuba. it's already happening, but what is it? everybody knows. everybody can feel it. it smells like freedom, but will it be victory? ♪
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♪ ♪ ♪
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♪ ♪ ♪ ♪
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motivational speaker: prosperity is productivity, not just hard work. you can be very hardworking and still be broke if you are not productive. [ drumming ] your life condition today is an outcome of choices and decisions made in time past. good choices, bad choices, easier choices, or no choices at all.

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