Well, well, well. President Obama has managed to get folks all riled up ... again. Seems he has decided to take steps toward the dropping of economic sanctions against Cuba, and the normalization of relations. Oh. My. God. How dare he!!!??!! Basically, the president believes that normalizing relations between the two countries will go a long way toward relieving the suffering of a lot of people in Cuba. He thinks normalization will promote a more fertile field for democracy and improve the economic situation by leaps and bounds. But (working on the theory that this president simply can’t do anything right) opposition to normalization with Cuba has been enthusiastic and vociferous. It would seem there are some out there who think that after over 50 years of no results, one more year of sanctions might just be the straw that breaks Fidel’s back. One more year. Just one more ... or one after that ... or after that again. Since 1960, nothing has been achieved by enforcing economic sanctions on Cuba. Nothing. Zero. Nada. But God forbid we try something new — even after realizing that 55 years of economic sanctions have failed. Some folks in Washington are shocked. House Speaker John Boehner went so far as to say the president was making “... another mindless concession to a dictatorship.” Wow! A “mindless concession to a dictatorship.” So ... the question begs to be asked: How does Speaker Boehner and his rather conservative leaning buddies explain the last president, George Bush the Younger’s, relationships with some of the most brutal dictators in world history? The Bush family’s “mindless concessions” to the Saudi royal family are the stuff of legend. The Saudi’s are people who won’t even allow women to drive in their country and who pretty regularly lop people’s heads off in the town square for ridiculously minor crimes. Bush relations with Saudi Arabia’s dictatorial leadership made the family — and family friends — a good chunk of change. Bush sucked up to Vladamir Putin in ways Obama could never handle. It was reported that Bush and Putin had a “warm relationship.” Hmmmmm ... Bush was great buddies with Hosni Mubarak, or Egypt (a REALLY bad U.S. diplomatic call!). He had a very, very warm relationship with former Pakistani leader Perez Musharraf, who Bush called “a great ally.” President Bush gave a lot of “mindless concessions” to Islam Karimov, the President of Uzbekistan. He called him an “important ally in the War on Terror.” Karimov’s government henchmen have virtually written the book on torture. Again, hmmmmmmmmmmm ... Bush was a big, Big, BIG fan of Jintao Hu — China’s Communist Party leader and head of state. Just so you know, China is much more a problem for the U.S. that Cuba was, is, or will ever be. Bush offered wide and broad “mindless concessions” to Abdullah Gul of Turkey. Gal held strong Islamist political views as a student and was a member of the Islamist Welfare Party. Gül joined present president Recep Tayyip Erdogan in developing a much more dramatic role for Islamists in previously secular Turkey. Gül sponsored laws which declared political opposition as unconstitutional, authored laws increasing political control over the judiciary, and gave the National Intelligence Organization a wide range of new and secretive powers. Bush loved King Hussein and his son King Abdullah — enlightened by some standards, but dictators nevertheless. He was a big supporter of Musaveni of Uganda. This is a dictator directly or indirectly responsible for the murder and death of hundreds of his own countrymen. But Bush loved him despite the fact that he supported of Ugandan efforts to create the death penalty for homosexuality saying gay relationships were against God’s will. And more ... and more ... and more ... But President Obama, says Boehner, is making “mindless concessions” to a dictator. He should qualify his criticism by pointing out that Fidel Castro is a tottering Cuban revolutionary in his dotage, and his brother is not far behind. Obama, by breaking the economic sanctions, will help create an environment that allows for the development of a new and vibrant Cuban economy that will move the Cuban people into the 21st century. Something that didn’t, wouldn’t, and couldn’t happen with 55 years of sanctions, or one more year ... or one more ... or one more.