Wake up with freedom fighters


Generally speaking, if I haven't had my morning cup of coffee yet, it's too early to talk politics. But now there's a new way to stir up political controversy and get my cup o' mud at the same time -- all without saying a word.

"Brewing with the fresh-roasted beans of Contra Café will show you that drinking coffee is about more than getting a caffeine fix. It's about experiencing a beverage of exceptional taste and vibrant flavor, handcrafted for you by former freedom fighters deep in the mountains of Nicaragua!"

Bedecked with photos of Ronald Reagan and Oliver North as well as quotes from Commie-hating coffee lovers, the Contra Café website proudly announces that the Contras are back -- and this time they mean business. (Agri-business, that is.) Now that the CIA no longer supports their paramilitary activities, they're counting on a new generation of American drug addicts java-heads to help them turn Kalashnikovs into ploughshares. Let's run the numbers on the Contras and their coffee, all mixed up for ironic emphasis:

  • The Contras' farms sit between 3,200 and 3,700 feet in altitude in Nicaragua's Jinotega coffee-growing region.
  • The Nicaragua conflict claimed an estimated 60,000 lives. The Contras were frequently accused of being responsible for multiple political assassinations, kidnappings, and the widespread use of torture.
  • Each of the Contra farmers manages their own small farm of 1-2 acres. This attention to the smallest details ensures that every cup of Contra Café has zero defects and perfectly balanced flavor.
  • Contra raids caused extensive damage to crop fields, grain silos, irrigation projects, farm houses and machinery. Numerous state farms and co-operatives were incapacitated; other farms still intact were abandoned because of the danger.
  • To protect the delicate Arabica trees from the fierce mountain sun, the Contra farms are covered with a thick layer of shade trees. Besides enhancing the taste of the coffee, this shade provides a habitat for hundreds of native species of birds and animals.
  • The Sandinistas accused the Contras of conducting a campaign of indiscriminate terror. For example, the Sandinista government claimed in November 1984 that since 1981 the Contras had assassinated 910 state officials, attacked nearly 100 civilian communities and caused the displacement of over 150,000 people from their homes and farms.
  • Depending on how strong you want to brew your coffee, one 16 oz. bag of Contra Café makes 40 cups of coffee, which is $0.25 per delicious cup. Contra Café is available $10 per 1 pound bag, or $9 per bag if you join Club Contra.