Sunday, April 13, 2008

Venezuela Six Years after the Coup

Jorge Martin
Friday, 11 April 2008


Six years after the coup against the democratically elected government of Hugo Chávez was defeated by the magnificent mobilization of the masses, the contradictions within the Venezuelan revolution are as sharp as ever.

On March 2nd, delegates to the founding congress of the Venezuelan United Socialist Party (PSUV) returned home after a two month long discussion period. On March 10th the Bush administration in the United States threatened to add Venezuela to its list of "nations that support terrorism". On April 9th, president Chávez announced the nationalisation of the massive SIDOR steel mill, siding with the workers in their 15-month long struggle with Argentinean multinational Techint.. An analysis of these three events provides us with a clear picture of where the Venezuelan revolution is at, the dangers it faces, and which is the way forward.

The building of the PSUV was proposed by Chávez immediately after the victory in the presidential elections of December 2006. The Bolivarian revolution has for a long time faced a contradiction: on the one hand it has derived its strength from the massive mobilization and support of the masses of workers and peasants organized in thousands of different organizations (land reform committees, revolutionary trade unions, Bolivarian circles, neighbourhood groups, etc.), but on the other hand it lacked a nationwide democratic revolutionary organization through which they could express themselves politically. The Bolivarian parties that stood in past elections were rightly regarded by the masses as no more than electoral machines controlled by unelected and unaccountable cliques of bureaucrats, careerists, corrupt local and regional politicians, etc.

Every time the masses of workers and peasants were given a channel to organize and take the reigns of the revolution they took it with both hands. A million and a half joined the Bolivarian circles at the end of 2001. More than 2 million were organized in the Electoral Battle Units during the recall referendum in August 2004. But also, every time they tried to coordinate their efforts at the neighbourhood, local and regional levels, the bureaucracy and the reformists blocked them. Thus, when president Chávez made a call to form the PSUV, and for this to be "the most democratic party in the history of Venezuela", the masses correctly understood this as an appeal to get rid of the bureaucracy which is acting as a brake on their revolutionary initiative.

In just two months in early 2007, 5.6 million Venezuelans – women, youth, workers, peasants, and unemployed – registered to join the PSUV. 1.8 million of them attended regular weekly meetings of their local Socialist Battalions. This was extraordinary. Once again, the Bolivarian masses had responded. But, as we warned at the time, the fate of the PSUV could not be determined in advance. It would be the result of a fierce struggle between the revolutionary left of the movement and its reformist and bureaucratic sectors.

During six weekend sessions, more than 1,600 delegates met to discuss the declaration of principles and statutes of the new party. The clash between left and right was evident from the very beginning. On the first day of the congress a majority of delegates asserted their will to have control over the proceedings by protesting that they had not been consulted on the agenda or the order of the discussions. This was the mood that prevailed throughout the congress and which was reflected in some of the decisions and votes that took place. For instance, the PSUV declared itself as an anti-capitalist party, based among other principles on those of scientific socialism, and having among its guiding figures those of Marx, Engels, Lenin and Trotsky. The fact that the congress delegates met over six different sessions allowed the left wing, which at the beginning was atomised, to become more coordinated. Most of the delegates were representatives of this layer of "natural leaders" at the local and neighbourhood level, and here they had a chance, for the first time, to get to know each other, to exchange experiences and discuss ideas.

On March 9th some 80,000 members of the PSUV participated in the first internal elections to select a provisional national leadership composed of 15 full members and 15 alternates. Despite the fact that known figures, many of them from the old Bolivarian parties, made up the bulk of those elected, there were a number of significant surprises. Diosdado Cabello, who had emerged during the congress as the main representatives of what in Venezuela is called the "home grown right wing" of the movement, did not make it onto the list of 15 full members, despite being well known and having played a prominent role throughout the congress. It was a clear vote against the right wing and against bureaucratic methods within it.

A whole number of other prominent governors, local mayors, etc., did not make it into the list of 30 who were elected. Many of those elected were those considered to be more left wing, less connected with political party apparatuses, more removed from the bureaucracy, etc. Others clearly identified with the revolutionary left of the Bolivarian movement, missed election only narrowly. The cut off point was set at 12,000 votes and several prominent left-wing candidates all got more than 10,000. Freddy Navas, a supporter of the Revolutionary Marxist Current (CMR) received 9,000 votes standing on a clear Marxist platform. Navas explains how the political discussions and the votes both "reflect a high level of consciousness amongst the members of the party, an iron will to take the revolution forward and a clear search for a revolutionary left wing alternative".

After the defeat of the constitutional reform referendum in December 2007, the oligarchy realized that their tactics had worked. They had applied massive pressure on the economy, with a campaign of sabotage of the food distribution chain and had managed to push a significant number of chavista supporters to abstain. They are not strong enough to make open war or military intervention a part of their agenda at the moment, so they hope to gradually wear down support for the revolution through a relentless campaign in the media, international pressure, economic sabotage, etc., and to win some institutional spaces in the November regional elections.

Colombia's recent incursion into Ecuador to kill the FARC guerrillas' second-in-command had a clear aim: to stop the process of humanitarian negotiations which was increasing the prestige of Chávez in Colombia and putting president Uribe in an increasingly embarrassing position. The attack, a violation of Ecuador's national sovereignty, and carried out with support from US forces based at Manta in Ecuador, also aimed to paint Venezuela as a "terrorist-aiding" country. During the raid, Colombian forces allegedly recovered a laptop containing information linking the FARC with an attempt to make a "dirty bomb", and linking Venezuela and Ecuador with the "terrorist" FARC and narco-trafficking. This is all part of the propaganda war against the Bolivarian revolution, in the same way that "weapons of mass destruction" were part of the build up to the invasion of Iraq.

But the most damaging part of the campaign of imperialism and the oligarchy is that of economic sabotage. In early 2008, the Venezuelan government discovered thousands of tons of food hidden in warehouses and trucks, being diverted to Colombia or the black market. This confirmed what everybody already knew. Food shortages in Venezuela were part of a concerted campaign organized by the oligarchy. But raids and seizures alone will not solve the problem. Only a serious offensive, based on the revolutionary initiative of the PSUV members and revolutionary trade unions, to occupy, expropriate and run under workers' control and management the means of production can put an end to the capitalists' strike which is crippling the Venezuelan economy and undermining support for the revolution.

On March 15 Chávez announced the nationalization of a dairy processing plant and a large chain of slaughterhouses which would give the state control over 40 percent of the milk processing and 70 percent of the meat processing sectors. Then, on April 3rd, he announced the nationalisation of the whole of the cement industry, controlled by three multinationals, the Mexican Cemex, the French Lafarge and the Swiss Hoclim. These are steps in the right direction, but must be extended to the whole of the food distribution chain and to all the key sectors of the economy.

The SIDOR steel mill strike clearly illustrates the dangers facing the revolution. Here we have one of the most important industries in the country, in an area with the largest concentration of the industrial proletariat. There are nearly 15,000 workers at SIDOR, a third of them working in-house and two-thirds working for a myriad of outside contractors. The company was privatised in 1997 under the Caldera government, when the former guerrilla leader Teodoro Petkoff was in charge of privatisations. SIDOR is now owned by Argentinean-Italian multinational Techint which has made millions in profits on the back of tremendous exploitation of the workers, which has resulted in a marked increased in deaths and accidents at work.

When Chávez made a call to "nationalise all that was privatised" in January 2007, the workers responded with spontaneous walk-outs and by raising the Venezuelan flag over SIDOR's installations. Finally, after many negotiations and pressure from the Argentinean government of Kirchner, an agreement was reached between Techint and the Venezuelan government. The company was to sell to the national market at preferential prices and in exchange, there would be no nationalisation. But throughout the 13 months of the collective bargaining negotiations the company has had a provocative attitude. Finally, the workers' patience ran out and they started a series of stoppages in January, February and March.

What was the response of the Ministry of Labour? First of all they tried to impose binding arbitration. Then on March 14th the National Guard was sent to brutally repress the workers during an 80-hour strike. The workers and the masses in the region have responded with a clear class instinct, organizing solidarity meetings and pickets, threatening strikes in other plants, etc.

Adel El Zabayar, a Bolvarian member of the National Assembly who came out publicly for the nationalisation of SIDOR explained: "There are sectors within the state that play at wearing down the government, using government authorities to assume a bosses' attitude". This is precisely the problem: the state apparatus remains largely the same, and a capitalist state cannot be used to carry out a socialist revolution.

Furthermore, the attitude of the Minister of Labour, José Ramón Rivero, accusing the workers of being counter revolutionary, siding with the company and putting pressure on the workers to accept the company’s offer, was playing into the hands of the right wing which was attempting to exploit the conflict. Finally, on April 9th, Chávez intervened on the side of the workers and announced the nationalisation of SIDOR. This is an important victory for the workers of SIDOR and will certainly have an impact on the struggle of Venezuelan workers as a whole.

In these three examples we see the dangers that threaten the Venezuelan revolution: a capitalist state apparatus which has not been destroyed and that is acting to sabotage the revolution, an economy which is still under the control of the oligarchy, which uses it to sabotage the revolution, and a reformist, bureaucratic right wing of the Bolivarian movement which is doing its best to block the revolutionary initiative of the masses and prevent the revolution from being completed and thus undermining its social base of support.

If these problems remain unsolved, the Bolivarian revolution will be defeated. But in the rank and file of the PSUV and among the SIDOR workers, there are the forces that can take the revolution to victory. They need to be organized around a genuine revolutionary socialist and internationalist programme which alone can guarantee success.
RENEGADE EYE

82 comments:

Té la mà Maria - Reus said...

Your magnifics artícles give that think and with a world no very liable to do it of agrair fellow greetings a strong embrace

Beamish said...

They need to be organized around a genuine revolutionary socialist and internationalist programme which alone can guarantee success.

Of course it can. Look at all the other successful socialist and internationalist revolutionary programmes.

Let's review the list...

um...

Beamish said...

uh...

Beamish said...

hmm.

sonia said...

former guerrilla leader Teodoro Petkoff was in charge of privatisations

Venezuela is a strange country. Chavez is now nationalizing a company that was privatized 10 years ago by a Communist.

That whole article is hilarious, btw, especially this priceless little gem: "Minister of Labour, José Ramón Rivero, accusing the workers of being counter revolutionary, siding with the company and putting pressure on the workers to accept the company’s offer (...) Chávez intervened on the side of the workers and announced the nationalisation of SIDOR. This is an important victory for the workers of SIDOR".

It's hilarious, because with the company being nationalized, that Minister of Labour, José Ramón Rivero, now becomes the direct boss of all those workers....

Renegade Eye said...

Beamish: Let us look at Venezuela. Every indicator is more positive than previous governments. Poverty has been reduced, literacy, food consumption etc. Chavez's government is the least oil dependent government in Venezuelan history.

For the left, the good part is Stalinism is dead. Countries like China and India, are becoming more industrial and urban. With a real working class, real revolution can occur.

Socialism was declared dead, yet it's back in the discussion. The death of Stalinism will be nothing compared to the death of capitalism.

Sonia: In private hands industry uses profits in the financial market for money, rather than investing in the company.

SIDOR used to employ 13,000 people. Under private hands it employs 4,000. Most of the jobs were outsourced to some 200 companies.

Jungle Mom said...

Ren, I rarely comment here and only read a bit for my personal entertainment, as you always make me laugh! But, this is too much!
"Let us look at Venezuela. Every indicator is more positive than previous governments. Poverty has been reduced, literacy, food consumption etc. Chavez's government is the least oil dependent government in Venezuelan history."
You have got to be kidding!!!! Have you ever even been to Venezuela???
This is just an outright lie and not the reality.
OK, I'll go back into my lurker mode now.

Larry Gambone said...

Interesting article. I hope those nationalized industries are put under workers control. But from what I have read about the Bolivarian Revolution, it seems they are aware that nationalization without workers democracy is not the answer. And I should add, re-nationalizing of all of the public properties (with the worker-cintrol proviso)that have been stolen by the reactionaries would be a good policy elsewhere.

Eitan said...

Ren: my mom's coming home from Switzerland so I need to prepare the house (she always does so for me and dad) but one thing I will NOT do is go back to Sonia's blog- no matter how many times she or Beak apologize. I won't have to do with nudist exhibitionists and insane crazies.

Renegade Eye said...

Jungle Mom: Thank you for visiting. It is hard to talk about progress or failure in the abstract. I recognize Venezuela is a poor country, with much that needs to be done. Still what I said was more true than not.

Supporting something doesn't mean that contradictions don't exist.

Eitan: I've known Sonia for several years. She is not Beakerkin and will do her best to be fair.

I'm posting from a computer that won't allow adult sites.

I explained on Sonia's blog, Beak could never resolve the issue alone, because he would have had to say whatever you did was from honesty. He is not that flexible. He actually owes you an apology. You tried to defend the honor of your deal with him.

Larry: Atleast the profits aren't used in a neoliberal manner, as investing in finance. Debt for sale.

sonia said...

Ren,

In private hands industry uses profits in the financial market for money, rather than investing in the company.

Maybe 50% of the time, not more.

By contrast, in government's hands, industry cannot use profits in any way, because THERE AREN'T ANY PROFITS ! Everything is wasted.

, I've known Sonia for several years. She is not Beakerkin and will do her best to be fair.

If I wasn't fair to Eitan, it's because his bizarre e-mail made me suspicious that Eitan was really Beak in disguise.

From my point of view it looked like this:

1. Beak's comment made me vaguely suspicious that Beak was Eitan.

2. You expose Beak's strange comment where he seems to be adressing himself.

3. Immediately Eitan e-mails me asking to delete all the comments that mentions either him or Beak by name.

4. I became convinced that Eitan is really Beak, so I decide to post Eitan e-mail to reveal Beak's duplicity.

5. Beak is extatically happy and Eitan is mad as hell. Not the reactions I expected. So I am starting to have doubts again...

Eitan,

I will NOT do is go back to Sonia's blog- no matter how many times she (...) apologize.

Apologize for what ? For refusing your request to censor comments on my own blog ? Are you for real ?

You should appologize to me for asking me to become a censor. I NEVER censor anything. And I expose everybody who promotes censorship.

Larry Gambone said...

"
By contrast, in government's hands, industry cannot use profits in any way, because THERE AREN'T ANY PROFITS ! Everything is wasted."
Sez Sonia.

Please quit confusing ideology with fact. I have already refuted your viewpoint on government industries and social services in the comments on the Obama posting. Perhaps you missed them. Without repeating myself, I will only say that Quebec Hydro, BC Hydro, not to mention Chile's state-owned Chuquicamata copper mine, are all HIGHLY profitable. One could list scores of other examples of government profitability. (And I say this as someone ideologically opposed to state ownership, but when the choice is between the truth and ideological correctness, I will always go for the truth. Try it. Sonia.

Graeme said...

I think what Venezuela really needs is more missionaries, like jungle mom, spreading the good word. seriously though, how crazy do you have to be to be a christian missionary in a christian country? those damn latin american catholics aren't god fearing enough for nutty north american evangelicals?

Hey, no wonder Chavez is their enemy. If people start gaining some self-determination, they have no prey.

Renegade eye, as well as I, had dinner with a Venezuelan that directly contradicts the nonsense Jungle Mom peddles on her blog.

sonia said...

Larry,

Quebec Hydro, BC Hydro, not to mention Chile's state-owned Chuquicamata copper mine, are all HIGHLY profitable.

Wow. You actually found three state-owned companies that manage to squeeze a tiny profit. And where did you find them ? In Venezuela ? In Zimbabwe ? In the old Soviet Union ? No. Only in Canada and Chile.

Now, if only Chavez's new party had banners with portraits of Stephen Harper, Brian Mulroney and Augusto Pinochet instead of their admitted
guiding figures (...) of Marx, Engels, Lenin and Trotsky as our friend Jorge Martin honestly admits, maybe Venezuela's state-owned companies would turn a tiny profit too.

Larry Gambone said...

Sonia, you could find more of the same in Europe, if you chose to look. (Absolut vodka, until a week ago was a Swedish state owned company, as but one example.) And as far as a "tiny" profit, on the contrary, the companies I mention have been major players in the economy. And Harper, Mulrony and Pinochet are more straw man arguments. The Hydro companies are PROVINCIAL concerns, nationalized under populist, social democratic and moderate conservative governments, not under neo-liberal regimes. Chucquicamata was nationalized under Eduardo Frei, a Christian Democrat, not Pinochet, the latter keeping the highly profitable mine to help fund his military.

Larry Gambone said...

Graeme, I have read JM's site and it seems that the Indigenous People she is seeking to inflict her ideology on are "pagan." This is far worse than if they were RC, as this is a form of cultural genocide. I don't see how in this day and age, when we know how destructive this is, and how rare aboriginal people uncontaminated by European belief systems are, that missionaries are still allowed. Missionaries in this case, should be considered a form of spiritual pollution and they should not be allowed prey on these people.

Jungle Mom said...

Larry,
You had 'dinner' with a Venezuelan. MY! How well informed you must be now!!!!

Eitan said...

Larry: I agree with you concerning the destruction caused by missionary activities.

Jungle Mom said...

Do you approve of the new Iranian missionaries , Shia ,working among the tribes?
How about all the Cubans preaching communism? Except that most tribes have refused to allow them into their villages...
It is very arrogant to decide for
an entire people group what they should and should not be allowed to do or have!
All while sitting in your comfy office typing!

Renegade Eye said...

Jungle mom: Often when religion and Marxism is discussed, the whole quote that is famous is not shown in its entirety.

Religion is, indeed, the self-consciousness and self-esteem of man who has either not yet won through to himself, or has already lost himself again. But man is no abstract being squatting outside the world. Man is the world of man—state, society. This state and this society produce religion, which is an inverted consciousness of the world, because they are an inverted world. Religion is the general theory of this world, its encyclopedic compendium, its logic in popular form, its spiritual point d'honneur, its enthusiasm, its moral sanction, its solemn complement, and its universal basis of consolation and justification. It is the fantastic realization of the human essence since the human essence has not acquired any true reality. The struggle against religion is, therefore, indirectly the struggle against that world whose spiritual aroma is religion.
Religious suffering is, at one and the same time, the expression of real suffering and a protest against real suffering. Religion is the sigh of the oppressed creature, the heart of a heartless world, and the soul of soulless conditions. It is the opium of the people
The abolition of religion as the illusory happiness of the people is the demand for their real happiness. To call on them to give up their illusions about their condition is to call on them to give up a condition that requires illusions. The criticism of religion is, therefore, in embryo, the criticism of that vale of tears of which religion is the halo.


The writer of this post has been to Venezuela several times.

Religion uses terms more like darknesss and light, good and evil etc. As a dialectical materialist I acknowledge the changes and contradictions that always happen everywhere.

Take one line or paragraph from this post concretely that you disagree with, and will refute.

sonia said...

Larry,

Missionaries in this case, should be considered a form of spiritual pollution and they should not be allowed prey on these people.

Spoken like a true Stalinist, willing to use force to impose his will on the World. Fortunately, even Venezuela, even under Chavez, still has open borders, and people can travel where they want. And Chavez is unlikely to ban missionaries. While he has problems with some right-wing bishops, he is himself the product of the liberation theology (as were the Sandinistas, who included numerous missionary priest as government ministers). Chavez's most anti-semitic speech was deeply religious as well, comparing capitalists to Jews who crucified Christ.

Only in the West is religion a right-wing concept. In Latin America things are far more complex that you can possibly imagine Larry.

Ren,

I agree that this text by Karl Marx is far less anti-religious than that single sentence (often presented out of context) might imply.

It's still bullshit though, just like 90% of what Marx wrote. Religion isn't right or wrong because it's an opiate. Religion cannot be wrong or right. It can only be true or false. It's true if God exists. It's false if there is no God. Case closed. Everything else is bullshit.

Jungle Mom,

It is very arrogant to decide for
an entire people group what they should and should not be allowed to do or have!


Right on! Larry deserved this retort. And you have just provided a precise definition of Communism as well.

Cubans preaching communism... most tribes have refused to allow them into their villages

I am not surprised. I've noticed the same thing in Eastern Europe. Peasants were always the greatest enemies of Communism. Intellectuals were always its greatest defenders.

I bet the more primitive the tribe, the easier it is for them to agree that people who work harder deserve to eat more, and that those who refuse to work, don't deserve to eat at all.

Only Western intellectuals cannot grasp that simple concept. They prefer Marxism which is based upon the proposition that everybody should work according to his abilities, and eat according to his needs...

Larry Gambone said...

"Cubans preaching communism... most tribes have refused to allow them into their villages "

Good for them. And if it is "authoritarian" to desire that religious cults cease to prey on Aboriginal People, too bad. Spanish anarchists shot reactionary priests too. Destroying the religion and culture of Aboriginal People and replacing it with some Bible-pounding hatefulness is cultural genocide. Missionary schools and the crimes they committed against First Nations Peoples are a major issue in Canada. (It is also one of my areas of support work) See
http://www.hiddenfromhistory.org/

Larry Gambone said...

"It is very arrogant to decide for
an entire people group what they should and should not be allowed to do or have!"

Yes, let's let Nazis, Kluxers, nutbar Maoists and violent religious fanatics of all types run rough-shod over us! That is the logic of your so-called retort.

Larry Gambone said...

And I am very well aware of Liberation Theology and think it a good thing. Not to mention other forms of progressive religious movements such as the Catholic Workers, Society of Friends etc. I don't need you to tell me about the complexity of religion, as I was aware of that long before you were even born, Sonia.

Jungle Mom said...

Enough about me, back to the post... The truth is, Chavez is lower than ever in his approval rating while Uribe is riding high. The fact is, while some of you may dine with Venezuelans or perhaps even visit parts of Venezuela, I doubt you have stood in line all day to buy a chicken, or drive across town to look for milk, only to find it all gone, again. Have you had to beg and borrow sugar and eggs to bake your kid a simple Birthday cake???
Or not been able to get your daughters asthma inhaler because there are none in the country??

Na, I didn't think so!

Graeme said...

So Jungle Mom, is your argument that Venezuela was a rich country before Chavez?

Jungle Mom said...

Chavez certainly is a richer man now! The country is worse for the average person than in all the two decades I have lived there. Corruption is rampant. And violent crime is off the charts. Didn't your dinner companion explain that to you the other night???

Graeme said...

I doubt you have stood in line all day to buy a chicken, or drive across town to look for milk, only to find it all gone, again. Have you had to beg and borrow sugar and eggs to bake your kid a simple Birthday cake???
Or not been able to get your daughters asthma inhaler because there are none in the country??


Your talking about Chavez' base. They overwhelmingly vote for him. Why would they do that if he is such a "tyrant?" Perhaps you need to hypnotize them with you voodoo, so they'll vote in another European to sell off their country to foreign multi-nationals. I wouldn't count on all Venezuelans, even indigenous ones, being as gullible as you are.

Graeme said...

Interesting that during all the food protests that are going on across the world (capitalist economics for you), the starving people in Venezuela didn't take to the streets.

In fact, they are sending tons of food to countries like Haiti.

Renegade Eye said...

Larry: I hope you are younger than the anarchist Ammon Hennessey. I met that character when I was a kid.


Jungle Mom: Food consumption in Venezuela is up some 40% in Venezuela since Chavez took power. El Salvador has shelves full of groceries, nobody can afford.

Your anger should be directed to the oligarchy, who hoardes food, and the bureaucrats who pretend to be revolutionary, and profit from corruption. The oligarchy has been on one long strike, since Chavez took power.

Jorge said in this post: But the most damaging part of the campaign of imperialism and the oligarchy is that of economic sabotage. In early 2008, the Venezuelan government discovered thousands of tons of food hidden in warehouses and trucks, being diverted to Colombia or the black market. This confirmed what everybody already knew. Food shortages in Venezuela were part of a concerted campaign organized by the oligarchy. But raids and seizures alone will not solve the problem. Only a serious offensive, based on the revolutionary initiative of the PSUV members and revolutionary trade unions, to occupy, expropriate and run under workers' control and management the means of production can put an end to the capitalists' strike which is crippling the Venezuelan economy and undermining support for the revolution.

On March 15 Chávez announced the nationalization of a dairy processing plant and a large chain of slaughterhouses which would give the state control over 40 percent of the milk processing and 70 percent of the meat processing sectors. Then, on April 3rd, he announced the nationalisation of the whole of the cement industry, controlled by three multinationals, the Mexican Cemex, the French Lafarge and the Swiss Hoclim. These are steps in the right direction, but must be extended to the whole of the food distribution chain and to all the key sectors of the economy.

Renegade Eye said...

Sonia: True and false and right and wrong; are not the correct vocabulary to talk about religion. These terms are too static, for such a discussion. Religion evolves, changes and passes away. Something can be something other than itself at the same time. Secularism is a bourgeoise response to the question of religion, and Atheism is the Marxist answer.

sonia said...

JM,

I doubt you have stood in line all day to buy a chicken, or drive across town to look for milk, only to find it all gone, again.

Neither Graeme nor Ren ever did. That's why they still believe in Communism.

Graeme,

sell off their country to foreign multi-nationals.

If you want to fight multi-nationals, fine. But don't expect people who can barely feed themselves to fight it for you.

is your argument that Venezuela was a rich country before Chavez?

There were no food shortages, at least.

Chavez' base. They overwhelmingly vote for him. Why would they do that if he is such a "tyrant?"

Hitler's base has also voted for him in 1933, even though he was certainly a tyrant.

the starving people in Venezuela didn't take to the streets.

They were too busy waiting in line for food. Only rich people in capitalist countries have time to protest.

they are sending tons of food to countries like Haiti

Stalin was also exporting food in the early 1930's, while Ukrainian peasants were starving.

Ren,

Food consumption in Venezuela is up some 40% in Venezuela since Chavez took power.

I don't believe Chavez's propaganda lies, damn lies and statistics. Especially statistics.

El Salvador has shelves full of groceries, nobody can afford.

Since 50% of Salvadorans have family members who work in United States, and the other 50% work for those peoplein Salvador, yes, they can afford it. But they have to work very, very hard for it.

Your anger should be directed to the oligarchy, who hoardes food

Curiously enough, they weren't hoarding before Chavez came to power. Maybe because they didn't have to deal with absurd price controls. There is ALWAYS hoarding when government tries to impose price controls.

Jungle Mom said...

Ren, It is inconceivable that there are great food shortages through out Venezuela and you actually don't admit it!!!
It is a full time job to get food for a family...lots of lines and travel around as rumors spread as to where there may be certain basic food stuffs!
People can not afford to riot against a government that controls all law enforcement and shoot to kill.
Chavez is down to about 30% in his approval ratings and for the first time, even the barrios are complaining against him. Partly because of the fact that as he rails against multi-nationalism, he is giving away their wealth and just as you say, the food! It should be on Venezuelan shelves,but Chavez is sending it out to buy his allies!
You are all such protected individuals who seem to have no clue as to the costs of socialism to the very people you claim to be looking out for!!!

And I don't do voodoo!!!

sonia said...

It is inconceivable that there are great food shortages through out Venezuela and you actually don't admit it!!!

On the contrary, it's very conceivable. It's the NUMER ONE rule of Communist indocrination: never retreat - always attack. My teacher once put it like this: if a ceiling is white, and the party says it is black, what do you do ? You DON'T start to look for darker spots in the corners, you DON'T say that this half of the ceiling is less white than the other half. You simply walk into the room, you point to the ceiling and you say - "This ceiling is as black as tar !". End of discussion. If you do that, you win, because people will accept that what they thought meant "white" in reality means "black".

Larry Gambone said...

JM seems to prefer the narcotrafficante/death squad/US puppet Uribe to Chavez. Says a lot.

Ren, I am not THAT old, only 63. But my grandfather - also an bit of a French anarchist lived to be 101 and kept his marbles till the end. I intend to create as many problems for the capitalists and other forms of authoritarian creeps as long as there is a breath in my body.

sonia said...

I intend to create as many problems for the capitalists and other forms of authoritarian creeps as long as there is a breath in my body.

Before you can start creating any problems for them, you should first identify them. So far, you have no clue who the worst oppressors and exploiters really are...

Larry Gambone said...

Sez you to one who has been fighting them for 43 years. I know who the enemy is. I am not some air head academic, but a retired blue collar worker. The enemy is the boss class in all its forms and the creeps that apologize for them.

And as far as the reactionary lies about the conditions in Venezuela see:
http://www.cepr.net/index.php/publications/reports/an-empty-research-agenda-the-creation-of-myths-about-contemporary-venezuela/

Larry Gambone said...

Sorry the URL didn't copy.

http://www.cepr.net/index.php/
publications/reports/an-empty-
research-agenda-the-creation-of-
myths-about-contemporary-venezuela/

Jungle Mom said...

HA! it's really too bad the hungry children can not eat those lying reports! Are you all so naive????

Larry Gambone said...

Though I suppose Sonia thinks that the "enemy" is "communists" by which she really means Stalinists. This view smacks of typical right-wing paranoia. Stalinism, except for Nepal, is a dead dog. NO ONE, CHAVEZ INCLUDED, wants what happened in the USSR, China, "Twenty-first Century socialism" is based upon ideas taken from libertarian socialism, local community participation, self-management etc. These ideals have NOTHING to do with Stalinism.

Jungle Mom said...

I have dedicated my life to educating and fighting poverty. Education should offend no one, nor be denied anyone, merely because of where a person happens to be born.You write about your 'fight' as you live in first world comfort! Very convenient to be an expert that way! Says a lot!

Larry Gambone said...

What can one say when right-wingers prate about being concerned about the Third world and attack others for struggling where they are?

JM, if you are genuinely interested in fighting poverty and educating people fine, but if your real interests are converting them to another religion, or capitalist ideology that is another matter. Furthermore, the missionaries who destroyed the cultures and hence lives of First Nations peoples also did so claiming they were helping and educating.

Jungle Mom said...

Well, now why don't we just teach them to read and let them decide for themselves what they want to believe? And if they chose Christianity over their pagan religions...what's it to you? It's their choice. Or do you presume to choose for them?
I am not responsible for some "missionaries" of the past. Are you saying that your communists predecessors did not destroy cultures and practice genocide?? Call it "Socialism of the 21st Century" but in reality, it's all the same! Poverty, death and destruction.

Renegade Eye said...

Thank you for this discussion.

Sonia and Jungle Mom: The word is that Chavez's approval rating is at 65%, with 57% saying they are better off. In addition perceptions crime, unemployment and shortages are improved. This is from Radomundial.

The government had a .03% surplus.

Jungle Mom said...

REN,
Or you could read this one from USA Today,
CARACAS, Venezuela (AP) — Public support for President Hugo Chavez's government has significantly declined, according to two polls published on Tuesday.

Some 34% of Venezuelans surveyed said they support Chavez's government, down from a high of 67% in early 2005, to the lowest level in five years, a quarterly survey of 2,000 Venezuelans by Caracas pollster Datos found.

Larry Gambone said...

One more example of the authoritarian nature of Chavez.

"Venezuela may become the first nation in South America to constitutionally protect its citizens on the basis of sexuality.

The Chavez-controlled National Assembly has approved amendments that would add sexual orientation to the categories protected under human rights. The issue had already received the OK of various committees, signaling the measure was likely to gain approval of the Assembly."

Larry Gambone said...

"your communists", my foot. JM, if you knew ANYTHING about political ideologies you would know that anarchists and Trotskyists are OPPOSED to so-called communism, ie Stalinism. We are opposed for good reason, since we are among the first victims of such regimes. Furthermore, Chavez, and the other self-styled socialists leaders of Latin America are not Stalinists, as I have explained previously. Worker control and decentralized community control are the anti-thesis of Stalinist practice. I suspect you are suffering from the typical Gringo disease, right-wing paranoia, which makes any progressive out as "communist."

Renegade Eye said...

See this.

sonia said...

Larry,

, Venezuela may become the first nation in South America to constitutionally protect its citizens on the basis of sexuality,

Grim joke in a country with a higher homocide rate than Iraq, and a corrupt police that doesn't even bother to investigate murders.

, anarchists and Trotskyists are OPPOSED to so-called communism, ie Stalinism. We are opposed for good reason, since we are among the first victims of such regimes,

The last half of the last sentence is ABSOLUTELY TRUE. Problem is, YOU (anarchists and Trotskyists) are not opposed to Stalinism. It's the Stalinists who are opposed to YOU. You lick Stalinists's asses, and they kill you. That's the relationship. Trotsky didn't kill Stalin when he had a chance. Stalin killed Trotsky.

Trotsky didn't see the danger signs 80 years ago. Neither do you today.

, Chavez, and the other self-styled socialists leaders of Latin America are not Stalinists, as I have explained previously.

Not yet. But just wait. Stalin wasn't "Stalin" until the early 1930's neither. There was relative freedom in the Soviet Union from 1922 until 1932, during Stalin's first decade in power. It was a paradise compared to the Cheka slaughter of 1917-1922 and the NKVD slaughter after 1932...

Jungle Mom said...

I clump you all together because that is where you all end up in the end! There is no real difference and you will all do whatever it takes to whomever to get your desired effect.

You can read whatever report you wish, the fact remains that chavismo is suffering and people on the street are becoming more and more vocal about there lack of patience with this failed program. I know!!! I don't have to read about it or talk to a dinner companion about it, I can talk to 'el pueblo" myself.
Of course, the will of the people never had anything to do with Chavez' program so I expect him to continue to strong arm his will to do whatever he wishes.

Keep fighting the good fight there in your comfy chair, don't bother getting your hands dirty by actually living with and helping the masses, I am sure they appreciate all you do for them!!!!

Larry Gambone said...

Typical far-right paranoia from both Sonia and JM. It is 2008 not 1938! Stalinism is not some sort of Platonic form floating around in the Heavens waiting to manifest itself. It is an historical formation and its day is over. (Thankfully) Even the vast majority of the remaining CP's have rejected it and are now politically left-social democrats.

It doesn't seem to be worth talking to this pair of True Believers. They have their prejudices and that is it. I guess they need these prejudices, perhaps it gives meaning to their lives. Irrational hatreds serve a psychological purpose.

And as for helping the Third World, what we can do best for them is to work at home to defeat imperialism. Allowing such countries to develop on their own without Gringo exploitation and terrorism would be the best gift of all. And this is precisely what I have spent much of my life attempting to do. Not to mention in my own country, Canada, while the ruling class is an accomplice or junior partner, the people have also suffered at the hands of imperialism, both in terms of exploitation and political interference.

Larry Gambone said...

"people on the street are becoming more and more vocal about there lack of patience with this failed program. I know!!! I don't have to read about it or talk to a dinner companion about it, I can talk to 'el pueblo" myself."

I have heard the same from right-wing Gringos in Oaxaca during the uprising. Similar statements too in Nicaragua in the 1980's, Same in Chile prior to the coup. It is always the same cold tune.

Larry Gambone said...

That should be "old" tune!

Renegade Eye said...

I'm not sure of the meaning of this fact. The crime rate is high in Venezuela per 100.000 people. When recorded per 1,000 people, Venezuela ranks 46th. See Leftwing Criminologist.

Police are still part of the capitalist state apparatus. Ultimately the police and army will have to be reconstituted. Allende kept the state apparatus intact. Chavez should take a lesson from that.

Trotsky never had a chance to kill Stalin clean.

At the first gathering of the PSUV, the bureaucratic wing of Chavez's government, lost every vote.

There is no material basis for Stalinism, in modern day Latin America. It's closer to the opposite, too much electoral activity. You have the right to recall a politician, and can put anything up for referendum.

Jungle Mom said...

Ren, Oh yes, and such free and transparent elections!

CAMINO INCIERTO said...

I tried several times while reading the article as comments, it is quite difficult for me without knowing the English and their nuances.
Anyway, I do not believe that the citizens of any country is thinking of poor political theories or religious issues, these are luxuries that we can allow those who already have covered our basic needs of food, home, health, etc..
Any Latin America trampled by bad governments, civil or military dictators in a crisis is very important both in terms of food and other basic necessities. We cling to religion because they need a source of comfort and tradition, most of them do not know the Marxist vision of religion. What we want is to survive and then improve their quality of life. Regarding Venezuela, President Chavez is a dictator with varnish Democrat, he wants to be there for ever and ever and your friend Castro is not is not a fool democratic elections although there is a populist politician, and cares more egocentric be in the power needs of its people.

Graeme said...

Jungle Mom,

Your thugs had their chance, for pretty much the last 500 years. I love how you all wine so much the few times you're not in the seat of power. All you have to do is move next door to Colombia. I'm sure there are some pagans to brainwash in Uribe's paramilitary paradise. Just don't try to organize them.

sonia said...

Graeme,

Your thugs had their chance, for pretty much the last 500 years. I love how you all wine so much the few times you're not in the seat of power.

It's YOUR thugs who have been in power. History of Latin America is on long list of "glorious revolutions" where "the liberators of the people" have been turning into bloodthirsty dictators with amazing regularity. From Cortez (whose arrival provoked a popular uprising against Aztec tyranny), to Haiti's revolution of 1804 (which ended with a black king being crowned) to Bolivar to Mexican Revolution of the 1910's (which led to the present Chiapas-oppressing Mexican government) to Castro, to Chavez.

The pattern is ALWAYS the same:

1. An underdog proclaims himself a liberator of the poor people by denouncing the rich and the foreigners.

2. He kills the rich, expels the foreigners and establishes a dictatorship.

3. The dictator (or his successors) gradually reconcile themselves with foreign investors, set up sweatshops and tourist resorts.

4. Another "liberator" emerges and the whole charade starts again...

And meanwhile, Western idealists like you get all excited everytime a cynical demagogue rails against "evil capitalists" and "gringo exploiters"...

The Happy Revolutionary said...

Sheesh. Some of these idiots should read a book. The US has been having its way with Latin America for some time, and prior to that, another imperialist power did the same. Consequently, there have been plenty of proxy dictatorships for the empire in Latin America.

I suggest Sonia and friends should consider the plight of workers in Colombia, and some other Central American states. They'll soon learn a lesson or two about what corporate-friendly dictatorships mean when it comes to freedom.

Tossers.

Jungle Mom said...

Since we are now repeating ourselves, I see no need to continue here.

Renegade Eye said...

Sonia: You were not talking about Venezuela. The elections are fair, the nationalized were compensated, nobody was killed for their politics etc. In Colombia the legal opposition to Uribe, has been killed off. More unionists are killed than anywhere.

CAMINO INCIERTO: In Venezuela they have state of the art voting machines. The votes are counted both online and on paper. Every neutral election observer has said Venezuela's electoral system is fair.

I think when it gets close to Chavez's end of term, they vote against term limits. Most countries don't have term limits. In the US they came because people who opposed Roosevelt were afraid he'd never loose. It's really anti-democratic.

Cuba should allow opposition parties, provided they are not based in Florida or for private property.

If capitalism is restored in Cuba, they will have food riots like Haiti, healthcare will not be free, and schools will charge $$.

politiques USA said...

Latin America will always been in trouble with socialism because of the overwhelming presence of the USA. There are other countries than Latin America with a socialist model that works 100%. The 1st model is Sweden and many other european countries (including France) that rely on socialism, but these countries don't need to include Marx or communism to develop their social model.
The term "socialism" appeared around 1827 in England because newspapers and "economists" were worried about the social conditions of their workers. Socialism is legitimate because the radical transformations of urbanization affected the worker's class especially the peasants (farmers), this is how socialism was born, and it was later argued by Karl Marx, although there was already a theoritical model of socialism (in England) adopted by the communionists.

In France we have a plethora of know or unknown intellectuals that wrote on socialism and property. We have the anarchists (Proudhon) or the "socialists" such as Cabet, or Henri Saint-Simon, or Charles Fourrier. Some of these authors were anti-monarchists and they were wanted so the came to the US temporary until things settle down in France (IE Proudhon and Saint-Simon).


Henri Saint-Simon (1760–1825) was a French aristocrat who defied the conventions of his social class as a student. Imprisoned by his father for refusing to take communion, he escaped, joined the army, and fought against the British in the American War of Independence. Influenced by the relative absence of social privilege in America, he renounced his title at the beginning of
the French Revolution and became convinced that science was the
key to progress. His hope, expressed in his Letters from an Inhabitant of Geneva (1802–3), was that it would be possible to
develop a society based on objective principles. His critique of existing society focused on the continuing semi-feudal power
relationships in French society rather than on capitalism itself, but his belief in classes as the primary categories of analysis, and his emphasis on the possibility of providing a scientific
understanding of historical development, had clear relevance for Marxist theory. However, unlike Marx, he did not see ownership as the most important issue. In his view, history was really based Socialism on the rise and fall of different productive and unproductive
classes in the various eras. In his own time, he grouped together the overwhelming majority of society – from factory workers to the owners of those factories – as ‘productive’, while the minority of ‘idlers’ (including the nobility and the clergy) were
‘unproductive’. Progress now depended upon the productive classes, the ‘industrial/scientific class’ becoming aware of their mission so that they could effect a transition to the new era. However, this was not simply a replacement of one class by
another, as Saint-Simon argued that the industrialists and
scientists had a wholly different set of relationships with one
another from those between members of the feudal classes. The latter based their position on power, while the industrial/scientific
class emphasized cooperation and peaceful competition. The fact
that the feudal class still maintained its position was thus a barrier to economic progress and new forms of government. During his lifetime, Saint-Simon’s ideas tended to appeal more to some sectors of the middle classes, who were attracted by the modernizing aspects of the theory, than to the working class, who were perhaps discouraged by his secular tone in a religious age.
This was remedied to an extent in his later work, in which he proposed a ‘religion of Newton’, in recognition of Newton’s role as the founder of modern science; scientists and artists should head a
new church, and he even sought to combine a secular morality with a regenerated form of Christianity, claiming that the main goals
were to eradicate poverty and to ensure that all benefited from education and employment. This widened the appeal of his ideas, and immediately after his death Saint-Simonian communities were
established in France and elsewhere. Made illegal in France in 1830, they nevertheless continued to have influence up to 1848,
with approximately 40,000 adherents. The Saint-Simonian emphasis on industrialism and administrative efficiency as the key to progress and social justice influenced thinking in many other
countries, including that of the writer Dostoevsky and other radicals in Russia.

In Michael Newman's socialism - Oxford press

NB: something's going to happen in Guatemala and Nicaragua in the next few months.

Larry Gambone said...

We have seen a lot of slander and demonization of socialists by some of the commentators. (And thanks, Politiques USA for pointing out the many varieties of socialism.) We have MacArthyite slanders (all socialists are really Stalinists) Lies that libertarian socialists support Stalinists etc. The need to slander and demonize socialists (both genuine ones and the self-styled) by right-wingers shows the insecurity of their beliefs. It is though they thought, "If I were to see socialists as being as sincere, honest, decent, intelligent and rational as I think I am (or pretend to be) then I guess I had better become a socialist." But support or opposition to an idea does not logically depend upon the nature of an ideas adherents. What really counts are the needs, desires and goals of the opponents. For example, the capitalist needs to maintain dominance over the working population. Socialism, by empowering the workers, is a threat to that dominance. Hence capitalist anti-socialism is rational. The same can be said of the Social Darwinist who believes an elite must dominate the mass, or the racist for whom the "superior race" must dominate the "inferior races." Socialism threatens these authoritarian hierarchies and opposition is therefore rational. Of course, demonization is more than a personal weakness. It is rooted in the need to convince the masses that socialism is not a good thing, that a condition of slavery and degradation is desirable for them. A propaganda war in other words. A war in which no holds are barred, no lie is cruel or vicious enough. And such lies then become part of right-wing ideology and are repeated by the True Believers as facts.

Jungle Mom said...

One last word... The elections are far from fair. My son can not even renew his passport because he appears on a list for voting "wrong" . I have friends who have lost jobs, kids can not get into the universities, housing is denied.
GET REAL, people!!! Chavez is a dictator!!

politiques USA said...

I share lots of socialist libertarian ideas. I was born in France so I can't really refute my origins and my experiences on a better society; besides my ideas are to some extent in agreement with the views of my american fellows from the left but more in the century of enlightment. That said it does not mean I won't change my ideas on a society, but after what I've seen in the US (poverty, violence, frauds in the capitalist model, no healthcare, expensive education, and lack of solidarity), I can't seem to embrace the actual vision of this model. The american model was the best model in the XVIIIth and XIXth century while all the european models have failed totally. Since then there are better models all over the world, but the right keeps telling us that the US model is the best in the world (and I can't stop laughing when I hear that).
The right believes more in meritocracy, their assumptions are based on personal rewards and efforts for the "progress of the humanity". The left usually disagrees with that. It's a problem that whether it comes the left or the right, we all know that the human being cannot be equal, so the left will tend to make it more equal while the right gave up on this vision. And we can see that just this little difference on envisaging life gave a vast amount of ideas/ideologies.
We can't have everything in life, but I prefer much better a life with quality than a life with quantity: I believe in free healthcare, free education (George Washington stated we can't be free and ignorant at the same time), 30 hours of work a week, 1 month of paid vacation for everybody, and colorblind society (the 1st country in the world that believes in interracial mariages are the French). If everybody could have at least that, I would be so proud of the USA.

More socialist ideas for everybody:


Charles Fourier (1772–1837) also saw himself as a realist, who believed that he had discovered fundamental laws that needed to be implemented to create a new society. However, his ideas were
totally different from those of Saint-Simon, and there was a vast gulf between the world he sought to create and his own life. Born in Besançon, the son of a cloth merchant, he lived humbly in boarding
houses and probably never had a sexual relationship. But the utopia that he envisaged, which he called Harmony, was focused on
feelings, passions, and sexuality, and perhaps had more points of contact with the movements of the 1960s than with the emerging
working class of his own era. Believing that most problems arose from the mismatch between people’s passions and the ways in
which society functioned, he thought it possible to resolve this conflict through the establishment of so-called phalanxes, or
communes. On the basis of a calculation of the number of
personality types that he believed to exist, he concluded that just over 1,600 people would be the optimum size of each phalanx, for this would enable all passions to be satisfied and all necessary work to be carried out.
Fourier’s basic belief was a conviction that people did not need to change: the problem was the stifling impact of current society,
which was the primary cause of human misery. Fourier also condemned the oppression of women, believing this to reveal the
malfunctioning of the social system. He did not emphasize the importance of social and economic inequality as a fundamental
cause of conflict, assuming that this could be overcome if everybody had a basic minimum, an approach he thought compatible with private property. His comparative lack of interest
in the issues of class and inequality meant that Fourierism was the least popular of the movements of early socialists, and there were few factory workers amongst his followers. But his belief that human unhappiness was caused by psychological and sexual
problems and that the remedy lay in changes in society, rather than by treating the individual, certainly anticipated many later forms of socialism.


In Michael Newman's socialism - Oxford press P.10

NB: there has been a history of expellation in France and England for many centuries. Usually french people were expelled in England while English people were expelled to France, until they discovered the "new world". In Europe the law and the priests loved expelling/excommunicating people and usually they were sending them on a boat because water was the only element to purify people (Read "Madness of Civilization" from Foucault).

Graeme said...

Sonia,

You're focusing on the effects, not the causes. I bet Jungle Mom has got a picture of Cortez, the great evangelizer, on her wall.

Since Colombus "discovered" the area, it has essentially been one big treasure chest for Europeans. In Haiti, slaves finally kicked out their oppressors in the early 1800s. The rest of the area took longer. It is just now that countries in that region are starting to get rid of the caste system and the devastation caused by colonialism. Has there been opportunists, sure, but they have hardly been in charge for the last 500+ years. It takes time to recover from such events; countries like Venezeula and Bolivia are starting to actually do this and look like functioning democracies.


Of course, this isn't to be tolerated.

politiques USA said...

In Haiti, slaves finally kicked out their oppressors in the early 1800s
The revolution in Haiti started in 1791 led under Toussaint Louverture and it culminated all the way until ... 1804 in the liberation of San Domingo.
I'm glad it happened and it happened thanks to the french ideas of the early revolution in 1789 (LIBERTY - EQUALITY - FREEDOM).

More in this link:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Toussaint_Louverture

politiques USA said...

PS: the French Legislative Assembly decreed full equality to all Haitians on April 4, 1792.

politiques USA said...

I always wondered if french people were the 1st ones to abolish slavery because of the code of moral or for military tactics, but I guess that's another story. Back then French were fighting against the Spanish and the English for control of territories. The Louisiana territory (it was a huge territory going from North Texas all the way to Dakota and even Canada) was sold to the Americans under Napoleon but purchased with english bonds (LOL) (because Americans had no money).
When I was a toddler I played many times in the castle of Lafayette (it's situated in a city called Chavagnac-Lafayette).
...etc
Have a good week-end yall.

Farmer John said...

Sonia: You were not talking about Venezuela. The elections are fair, the nationalized were compensated, nobody was killed for their politics etc. In Colombia the legal opposition to Uribe, has been killed off. More unionists are killed than anywhere.

Don't Bogart that joint my friend, pass it over to me!

Farmer John said...

When is the Venezuelan Electoral Commission going to release the official tally of the December 2, 2007 vote?

Venezuela has one of the highest murder rates in the world... with many of the perps eventually being revealled to be members of the metro or state police departments. And forcing a businessman to sell his multi-billion dollar investment for pennies is NOT "adequate" compensation. Ask the folks at Exxon-Mobil.

And the so-called unionists you speak of being killed in Columbia are FARC'in iceholes who have kidnapped and murdered tens of thousands of innocent Columbians!

Renegade Eye said...

Even anti-Chavez people in Venezuela, trust the electoral system.

Venezuela is ranked 46th in murders, per 1,000 people.

Most recent polls show people are feeling better in Venezuela about crime.

Chavez's approval rating is at 65%.

Whole legal parties are off the ballot in Colombia, due to its leadership are dead.

Colombia's government are responsible for way more human rights violations than FARC.

Larry Gambone said...

"And forcing a businessman to sell his multi-billion dollar investment for pennies is NOT "adequate" compensation. Ask the folks at Exxon-Mobil."

Aw! My heart bleeds for the poor piggies. Big Bad Chavez come and blew down their little multi-billion dollar corporation.

Farmer John said...

Even anti-Chavez people in Venezuela, trust the electoral system

LOL! That was BEFORE last December... and the rest of your figures and numbers are GROSSLY outdated. His personaly popularity is in the tank. The only thing saving Chavez is that he play's Whack-a-Mole with anyone in the opposition who's head pops up.

And their supporters quickly join the growing crime statistics...

Anybody who signed the recall petition six years ago has a bulleye painted on their forehead. And he doesn't let them forget it!

btw - It turned out it was a couple cops caught on the security video of the recent bombing of the pro-American trade organization in Caracas... surprised? I'm not.

Farmer John said...

btw - Just curious, but when is Hugo going to let the Felderal Elections Commission release the official vote count from the December 2, 2007 referendum? Hmmmmm?

and is Hugo going to compensate Fedecameras with a store certificate or a promissory note for the bomb damage?

politiques USA said...

Mr Lugo brought together leftist unions, indigenous people and poor farmers into a coalition to form the centre-left Patriotic Alliance for Change.

Observers say that the man often described as the “bishop for the poor”, is a virtual political novice, best known for his advocacy of land reform and calls to renegotiate an energy treaty with neighbouring Brazil.

Speaking to his supporters at his campaign headquarters, Mr Lugo said the result showed that little people could also win and that this was the Paraguay he had dreamt about - a country for everyone.
http://www.truthdig.com/eartotheground/item/20080420_another_lefty_wins_in_latin_america/

Larry Gambone said...

"the recent bombing of the pro-American trade organization in Caracas."

Once again I find myself weeping. Poor, poor, little piggies. God, it can be tough sometimes pimping for imperialism! They must be praying right now for a coup that will overthrow the monkey as they refer to him and maybe kill 100,000 of those working class low life in the process.

Farmer John said...

Hey, if Hugo wants to drown his own kids in socialist bathwater, who am I to argue? But if wants any of MY kids, the b*stard will have to pay!

And larry, maybe kill? If Hugo keeps this cr*p up we are going to DEFINITELY kill some rojo rojitos w/o our eyes even becoming a little mojito.

Larry Gambone said...

Nice to hear the truth from FJ. He would welcome a murderous coup. Honest enough, he is to set aside the baffle gab about democracy. It is a class war. No doubt FJ welcomed Pinocho and if it were 1938 would be an admirer of Franco.

Farmer John said...

Gee Larry, that "murdurous" Columbian FARC killer Uribe has an 84% approval rating compared to Chavez's chestnut-tossing 51%. Take away his chest-nuts and his ratings will plummet into single digits.

And I do support a coup since it's been PROVEN that Chavez assasinates and kills the opposition AND has been playing with the election system (where are the December 2, 2007 results???). After all, YOU support the coup-makers fighting Uribe, and they actually have a fully functional electoral system!

Farmer John said...

Here we are, over 5 months after the December 2, 2007 Referendum... and the National Election Commission STILL refuses to release an official count of the ballots becuase it would reveal large svale voter fraud and tally manipulation by the Chavez government.

If THAT isn't reason enough for a coup, the NOTHING is!

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