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Thread: Venezuelan Election 2012- endgame for Chavez?

  1. #16
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    Default Re: Venezuelan Election 2012- endgame for Chavez?

    Quote Originally Posted by C. Flower View Post
    Still grumpy because the last attempted "coup" against Chavez didn't work ?


    My porridge is lumpy.

    At least there has been no post election violence that I know of. That was not the case pre-election when several Caprilles supporters were killed.
    As a general rule the most successful man in life is the man who has the best information.

  2. #17
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    Default Re: Venezuelan Election 2012- endgame for Chavez?

    Thought I'd update this thread. Yesterday Venezuela held state elections in all 23 states.

    The opposition had held 8 of these states, pre-election, including the valuable and rich areas of Zulia and Miranda. The results however, have seen The PSUV (Socialist party) sweep aside the opposition, who have lost 5 of their 8 states, including Zulia (holding Miranda). Also significant is that the opposition lost the state of Tachira, which the socialists had never won before.

    20 - 3. Suprisingly (or not I couldnt find much info on this in the english speaking press, except for a hidden away article in the guardian.

    So 2012 ends with another electoral triumph for Chavez' PSUV. Can there be any doubt that Chavez' social-democratic policies have borne fruit?

  3. #18
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    Default Re: Venezuelan Election 2012- endgame for Chavez?

    Quote Originally Posted by Ogiol View Post
    Thought I'd update this thread. Yesterday Venezuela held state elections in all 23 states.

    The opposition had held 8 of these states, pre-election, including the valuable and rich areas of Zulia and Miranda. The results however, have seen The PSUV (Socialist party) sweep aside the opposition, who have lost 5 of their 8 states, including Zulia (holding Miranda). Also significant is that the opposition lost the state of Tachira, which the socialists had never won before.

    20 - 3. Suprisingly (or not I couldnt find much info on this in the english speaking press, except for a hidden away article in the guardian.

    So 2012 ends with another electoral triumph for Chavez' PSUV. Can there be any doubt that Chavez' social-democratic policies have borne fruit?
    Is Chavez's named successor a man who can live up to that role?

  4. #19
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    Default Re: Venezuelan Election 2012- endgame for Chavez?

    Quote Originally Posted by Ogiol View Post
    Thought I'd update this thread. Yesterday Venezuela held state elections in all 23 states.

    The opposition had held 8 of these states, pre-election, including the valuable and rich areas of Zulia and Miranda. The results however, have seen The PSUV (Socialist party) sweep aside the opposition, who have lost 5 of their 8 states, including Zulia (holding Miranda). Also significant is that the opposition lost the state of Tachira, which the socialists had never won before.

    20 - 3. Suprisingly (or not I couldnt find much info on this in the english speaking press, except for a hidden away article in the guardian.

    So 2012 ends with another electoral triumph for Chavez' PSUV. Can there be any doubt that Chavez' social-democratic policies have borne fruit?
    Speaking to a Venezuelan friend of mine he holds the following opinion. Oil money is propping up the economy and that there is a lot of subsidised shops etc but there is no job creation. In turn the people that are poor are being kept poor as there is no job creation to drag them out of the poverty and raise the standard of living. Some of the people if you asked them off the record in Caracas would see the results as being more superficial rather than being anything concrete. That is just one face of the coin. Others may think that his policies have dragged the economy out of the gutter and despite the crash of the economy in 2008 that the Venezuelan economy is booming at the moment .
    History is the only true teacher, the revolution the best school for the proletariat - Rosa Luxembourg

  5. #20
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    Default Re: Venezuelan Election 2012- endgame for Chavez?

    Quote Originally Posted by Saoirse go Deo View Post
    Is Chavez's named successor a man who can live up to that role?
    Im not to well up on Maduro but he is the vice leader of the party, a former bus driver and union leader.

    Quote Originally Posted by fluffybiscuits View Post
    Speaking to a Venezuelan friend of mine he holds the following opinion. Oil money is propping up the economy and that there is a lot of subsidised shops etc but there is no job creation. In turn the people that are poor are being kept poor as there is no job creation to drag them out of the poverty and raise the standard of living. Some of the people if you asked them off the record in Caracas would see the results as being more superficial rather than being anything concrete. That is just one face of the coin. Others may think that his policies have dragged the economy out of the gutter and despite the crash of the economy in 2008 that the Venezuelan economy is booming at the moment .
    Speaking to a Venezuelan friend of mine the country was in a state when he left and now its in a lot less of a state. The poverty figures are there for all to see. The unemployment figures are also there for everyone to see. I dont want to repost them again, its not hard to look up. (or look back through this thread)

  6. #21
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    Default Re: Venezuelan Election 2012- endgame for Chavez?

    Quote Originally Posted by Ogiol View Post
    Im not to well up on Maduro but he is the vice leader of the party, a former bus driver and union leader.



    Speaking to a Venezuelan friend of mine the country was in a state when he left and now its in a lot less of a state. The poverty figures are there for all to see. The unemployment figures are also there for everyone to see. I dont want to repost them again, its not hard to look up. (or look back through this thread)
    Not disputing your figures (income levels rose for the poorest families) http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Economy_of_Venezuela

    But what Im thinking is has Chavez planned for the long term? The standard of living has not changed that much over the last two years

    http://hdr.undp.org/en/media/HDR_2011_EN_Tables.pdf

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of...elopment_Index
    History is the only true teacher, the revolution the best school for the proletariat - Rosa Luxembourg

  7. #22
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    Default Re: Venezuelan Election 2012- endgame for Chavez?

    Quote Originally Posted by fluffybiscuits View Post
    Speaking to a Venezuelan friend of mine he holds the following opinion. Oil money is propping up the economy and that there is a lot of subsidised shops etc but there is no job creation. In turn the people that are poor are being kept poor as there is no job creation to drag them out of the poverty and raise the standard of living. Some of the people if you asked them off the record in Caracas would see the results as being more superficial rather than being anything concrete. That is just one face of the coin. Others may think that his policies have dragged the economy out of the gutter and despite the crash of the economy in 2008 that the Venezuelan economy is booming at the moment .
    Have to agree with fluffybiscuits. My partner is Venezuelan and as a result I also know many other Venezuelans living in Ireland and not a single one of them is a supporter of Chavez. But that's not to say he's a dictator...

    My take on what's happening is that he has very admirable social initiatives, such as subsidised shops for the poor, medical centres for the poor, access to 3rd level education for all (albeit of a low and under funded standard), new social housing programs now, and all these initiatives make him very popular with the poor, working, and lower middle class of Venezuela, which make up a significant majority in elections.

    But none of these policies ever pull any of these people up the income ladder and don't really spur any level of growth or create employment. As such, these people stay where they are and are happy for the social initiatives and therefore continue to support Chavez. These same people also don't have the money to travel and see how things are elsewhere for comparison (I think this is a key reason as to why it's so hard to find a Chavez supporter outside Venezuela - those living here for example have experienced the standard of living here and blame Chavez for it being worse in Venezuela).

    My personal opinion is that the country has found itself caught in a sort of "national poverty trap", where economic policies bad for the economy are the most popular, because of the high level of poverty in the country. And democracy, by its very nature, essentially leads to the adoption of the most popular policies, not the best economic ones. Furthermore, many jobs in Venezuela are state jobs, and whether it's true or not, there is a degree of fear amongst those in state jobs that a vote against Chavez could lose them their job. That's probably partly true also, as the opposition would more than likely try to streamline the public sector somewhat.

    In summary I think Chavez is damaging their economy and resulting in a lower standard of living than could otherwise be achieved. BUT, I do believe he is a legitimate democratically elected leader.


    Also note that when trying to assess poverty in Venezuela official figures are very hard to interpret, due to their currency controls. The black market exchange rate is closer to the "free market" exchange rate than the official Government imposed exchange rate, which is used in official figures. And this makes it difficult from the outside to appreciate the disastrous levels of inflation the country is suffering (~15%).

  8. #23
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    Default Re: Venezuelan Election 2012- endgame for Chavez?

    Quote Originally Posted by Cian View Post
    Have to agree with fluffybiscuits. My partner is Venezuelan and as a result I also know many other Venezuelans living in Ireland and not a single one of them is a supporter of Chavez. But that's not to say he's a dictator...

    My take on what's happening is that he has very admirable social initiatives, such as subsidised shops for the poor, medical centres for the poor, access to 3rd level education for all (albeit of a low and under funded standard), new social housing programs now, and all these initiatives make him very popular with the poor, working, and lower middle class of Venezuela, which make up a significant majority in elections.

    But none of these policies ever pull any of these people up the income ladder and don't really spur any level of growth or create employment. As such, these people stay where they are and are happy for the social initiatives and therefore continue to support Chavez. These same people also don't have the money to travel and see how things are elsewhere for comparison (I think this is a key reason as to why it's so hard to find a Chavez supporter outside Venezuela - those living here for example have experienced the standard of living here and blame Chavez for it being worse in Venezuela).

    My personal opinion is that the country has found itself caught in a sort of "national poverty trap", where economic policies bad for the economy are the most popular, because of the high level of poverty in the country. And democracy, by its very nature, essentially leads to the adoption of the most popular policies, not the best economic ones. Furthermore, many jobs in Venezuela are state jobs, and whether it's true or not, there is a degree of fear amongst those in state jobs that a vote against Chavez could lose them their job. That's probably partly true also, as the opposition would more than likely try to streamline the public sector somewhat.

    In summary I think Chavez is damaging their economy and resulting in a lower standard of living than could otherwise be achieved. BUT, I do believe he is a legitimate democratically elected leader.


    Also note that when trying to assess poverty in Venezuela official figures are very hard to interpret, due to their currency controls. The black market exchange rate is closer to the "free market" exchange rate than the official Government imposed exchange rate, which is used in official figures. And this makes it difficult from the outside to appreciate the disastrous levels of inflation the country is suffering (~15%).

    Very interesting post.

    It is hard to get an all around view of an economy like Venezuela because most reports are either hyped up enthusiasm, or demonising opposition.

    The USSR suffered from the same, as does Cuba - it is hard to find the balanced data and analysis that would be really useful.

    While other countries have higher living standards, is it true that they don't have poverty ? Millions of US citizens get by with food stamps.

    In Ireland our big middle class is withering away with emigration and loss of jobs and businesses.

    In the long haul, I think mean life expectancy and minimum life expectancy (both snapshot and trend) measured by social class is a useful piece of information. Do you have any information on that, in relation to Venezuela ?

    Do you know
    “ We cannot withdraw our cards from the game. Were we as silent and mute as stones, our very passivity would be an act. ”
    — Jean-Paul Sartre

  9. #24
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    Default Re: Venezuelan Election 2012- endgame for Chavez?

    I completely agree that we over here, right across Europe, in the US and the rest of the "Western World" also have our own poverty to contend with... But judging purely on the hearsay grounds of my Venezuelan friends here it is apparently much worse there. I'll be travelling there next year and will be very interested to see it for myself.

    Quote Originally Posted by C. Flower View Post
    In the long haul, I think mean life expectancy and minimum life expectancy (both snapshot and trend) measured by social class is a useful piece of information. Do you have any information on that, in relation to Venezuela ?

    Do you know
    That's a very interesting idea. Unfortunately, I've no information regarding it. It would provide another metric by which the "success" and the fairness of a society could be measured. And it wouldn't surprise me at all if socialist oriented countries, like Venezuela scored higher on the fairness side of that than other more right wing oriented countries. But again, I don't have any data on it...

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