And Mao was a world-class swimmer

by Russ Roberts on May 18, 2004

in Cuba

When reports came out of China that Mao was ailing, the Chinese responded by claiming that Mao had just swam the Yangtze in world-record time. They even produced a photograph of Mao’s head just above the water. This was pre-photoshop days and it looked as cheesy as one of those old movies where the couple is driving and the background out the window is clearly filmed.

Now comes news that Castro can live to 140:

Fidel Castro’s doctor denied rumours that the president’s health was ailing, saying today the 77-year-old leader is in excellent health and claiming he can live at least 140 years.

Dr Eugenio Selman Housein said Mr Castro continues to run and swim and pointed to the president’s participation in a massive protest march on Friday.

Castro led the march past the US diplomatic mission in Havana to protest US policy against the island’s communist government for about 800 metres, walking slowly and with some difficulty.

“He is formidably well,” Mr Housein told reporters at a conference on “satisfactory longevity” in the capital city. The press “is always speculating about something, that he had a heart attack once, that he had cancer, some neurological problem.”

But Mr Castro is healthy enough to live at least 140 years, said Mr Selman, who heads a “120-years Club” that promotes wholesome habits for the elderly.

Those Communist leaders are awfully fit. Must come from living well at the people’s expense.

Here‘s a pretty entertaining article on Mao’s formidable achievement.

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