Man kann gar nicht soviel fressen wie man kötzen möchte!
Max Liebermann, Deutsche Maler.
I think that no matter how good a leader is, and Chavez is not that good, sooner or later he/she runs out of support, maybe people just get bored but it does and will happen. Chavez has already shown he will not be moved easily. It will take a fight and quite possibly a revolution.
Joe Higgins did a decent enough series on Latin American socialism a few years ago, cant find any of them online but here is a talk about his journey.
Do the right thing.
And thats one of the features of this type of socialism. The venezuelan gov. have been developing programmes or action plans over the years to target specific issues. Over there they're called ''misiones'' and one of the most successful has been the ''barrio adentro misión''. Basically taking doctors into the slums and getting everyone seen too. Most of those people wouldn't have seen a doctor every before that (such was the division between rich and poor). Other notable successes have been the erradication of illiteracy, increasing the number of school going kids, building huge amounts of social housing to get rid of the slums, amongst other things.
Here's a wiki link to the 'misiones'
Just read a very interesting article by a catalan intellectual Vicenç Navarro, who specialises in Media and Politics.
Its in spanish, sorry, but my sources on venezuela are hardly ever in english for propogandistical reasons.
Anyway, he argues that the disinformation we recieve in europe and north america is caused by the very structure of our traditional mass media. Here and in venezuela, the media is owed by very few oligarchs and they naturally a resistant to any form of media democratisation. In venezuela, over 80% of all forms of traditional media are utterly opposed to the Chávez government and that this is because they resist the socialisation in Venezuela and want to preserve their oligarchy. This in turn spills over to our media and results in the propaganda that we read about the dictator chávez.
He goes on to point out the achievements of Chávez' government, as well as the failings and the incoherence between the reality and what we read about Venezeula. One interesting point he cites is that the GNP per capita has increased by 2.5% since Chávez came to power year on year, compared to a overall 14% fall in GNP per capita between the years 1980-1998. This measurement is important for showing the real success of Chávez' economic policies.
Anyway, I think this is long enough. Unfortunately, as i said I dont really have sources in english as i completely distrust them, but if you can read spanish there are a number of sources which paint a more realistic situation of venezuela.
Maybe our government should ask Venezuela for help extracting our new-found oil. But I doubt it will happen.
So any links I post to English speaking sites are going to be propganda? Do you realise that statement wide open has no basis what so ever with any links.I backed up my claims with links and asserted why I believe what I believe.
I did mention that I have no issue at all with the socialist programmes and fully back them but to what extent are they a) working and b) Is he laying the foundations for economic issues in the future as happened here all the years ago when we spent what we had . Depending on one resource like oil in itself presents itself with problems as they are always going to be at the mercy of the oil markets and if the price of oil crashes in the future they are going to be up **** creek without a paddle.
A lot of the polcies are working, on one of the sites of the Venezuelan embassy there is a link that says they are quite sucessful in reducing poverty (http://venezuela-us.org/2012/01/13/e...latin-america/), this in itself as to be applauded. While the poverty is being tackled as I said before that Venezuela itself is the costliest city in Latin America (http://economix.blogs.nytimes.com/20...xpensive-city/) .
PS This is from a Latin American site I think,my Spanish is weak
I cant believe it took this long for you to come around to the idea that these social programmes are working. A 35% drop in poverty as well as a 20% drop in extreme poverty. That is what they have achieved. Are they working? I dont know, hows about we find out from some stastics
If you look at the list of misiones, you can see the a few of them are dedicated to promoting coops and small manufacturing. As well as upgrading farming techniques. The latifundista system of the countryside makes it hard to really improve things without expropriating the latifundios, but some of that has already occoured.
The fact that its the costliest country in (i dont know) means nothing while the government has its own chain of subsidised supermarkets which ensure access to basic foodstuffs for the poor. In Ireland we have neoliberalism and thus the more costly something is the less likely certain sectors of society can afford it: this is a poverty trap. Over there they have a safety net.
The latin american site you cite is noneless than the biggest venezuelan tv channel, which is vehemently anti.Chávez. They openly supported the coup and some panelists have been calling for coups every since. They ignore the achievements of the government and basically follow the line of their multimillion dollar owners.
Oh and they have the biggest proven oil reserves in the world. If norway expects to be pumping out till 2050 Im sure Venezuela can continue into the next century. That should be enough time to get their house in order, if the oligarchy let them.
As evidence of the program’s effectiveness, Venezuelan Vice President Elias Jaua cited Mercal’s recognition by the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) “as one of the fundamental instruments that has allowed Venezuela to be at the vanguard of the fight against hunger”
The same website in another article discusses though that exports are fairly expensive
There does not seem to be a balance and that is my point. Venezuela despite some flaws is a model that other countries should follow and look upon however its flaws could prove to be its undoing in the end. Im heading to Venezuela next year for three weeks wiht friends (I have a Venezuelan friend) and we are getting our money on the black market as the official exchange rate is awful.One of the most serious consequences of the high inflation rates in Venezuela, in terms of their impact on Venezuelan people, is that the devaluing of the bolivar over the years combined with fixed exchange rates means that imports are artificially cheap and non oil exports are too expensive, making it difficult for Venezuela to diversify its production.
People are also more likely to consume than save, since the value of their savings decreases at the rate of inflation. Also, hoarding is both a cause and an effect of inflation, as people are likely to buy more than they need of a product to avoid the higher price later
Your point on the media being against Chavez is not completely true. Chavez regularly interrupts broadcasts and even has his own show (would you watch Inda every week on RTE 1! ) called Alo Presidente. The state TV in Venezuela has a low audience share (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Television_in_Venezuela). Perhaps people dont want to listen to him.
The fact that he has a tv appearance every week is just his way of communicating with the people who vote him. Without that TV presence to explain the actions of the government the people would only hear the other side, that of the oposition oligarchy and as is well documented they lie, call for coups and even sometimes magnacide! So i dont particularly object to an hour every week to explain the governments policys, considering the media situation. And i suppose its better that he does that than hide away like our dame edna lol
BTW Im also goin over to Venezuela next year! really lookin forward to it
Here is an item from Harrys Place, very interesting I thought.
What time of the year are you going? Its better to go in May I believe, June to Oct is rainy season apparently!
I thought Chavez would be strong on such issues . Is he turning Venezuela into a little fifedom for himself?Last year prominent Venezuelan trade unionist Rubén González, a former supporter of Chavez, went to jail for having the temerity to test the fraternal claims of Bolivarian socialism.
After leading a 15-day strike at the state iron mining company in 2009, he was jailed for seven years for “crimes” that included unlawful assembly, incitement, and violating a government security zone. According to The Human Rights Foundation (HRF), González’s imprisonment had more to do with the fact that he took workers out on strike than with the trumped up official charges. “The on-going trial against González is yet another instance of the continuing criminalization of legitimate union activities in Venezuela,” said HRF general counsel Javier El-Hage.
Regarding the article that was posted, I could quite easily put up one contradicting what that pro israelii site says (what give it away are the articles about palestine but also the fact the Human Rights Watch are quoted as an irrefutable source, and that they say ''carter said it was a perfect democracy'', well its not just carter but the carter foundation, which just so happens to be the most respected democratic (elections) overseeing institution that the western world has at the mo.....)
but i dont think it really would make a difference to people who apart from thinking that they are open minded and leftish, seem to have swallowed all the negative propaganda (in every mainstream media out there) hook line and sinker.
Maybe this trade union guy did something that warented a convition, in any case it was not Chávez who condemned him, but the judiciary. A key focus of the propaganda against chávez is the personalisation of his government and the portrayal that he controls the judicary, police, media etc. That is a joke. and so far a successful tactic of the imperialists who would like venezuela to return to the neoliberal policies that left 60% of the population below the poverty line as well as 25% in extreme poverty, despite the huge oil incomes.
Fiefdom, hook line and sinker...
For example, trade unionism is repressed in the USA, maybe thats something that they imposed on their ''back yard'' during their century long domination which has led to an infamously weak trade union movement in venezuela.
We in ÉIre have a terribly weak trade union movement. In spain they are completely sold out too.
Anyway, as i said, i dont have many sources in english, its not neccessary for me as i have other sources, Have you read that 'harrys' place? its a right wing rag dressed up as cool, fervently zionist and not something i would use as source material
Maybe there is a deeper reason. Because latin and especially south america is so far away and has always been completely excluded from our consciousness i think that the cultural gap is defo wide enough so that western media cannot use the same criteria in judging events in places like venezuela, bolivia, chile as they can in western europe and the anglosphere. We generally have no idea of that contintents history (im speaking in general here) and we tend to apply similar historical processes on them (agri revolution followed by industrial revolution=creation of proletariat=social agitation, then world wars, welfare state, etc. etc.) When the reality is that their history and historical processes did not happen like ours and in turn created a whole differnt set of cultural markers and idiosyncracities which prevent us from judging them on our terms.
Now I hope im explaining myself, basically I think the gap is too wide for a layman to understand and judge south america (politics, society) unless they put effort in and come into contact with that society (friend, partner, etc.)
Therfore, i do prefer to get sources in spanish, although I dont rule out fantastic sources in english or other languages. (I just dont know them)
BTW if youre interested at all in latin american history (recent) or politics there are some fantastic books written by one Richard Gott, who specialises on the latin american left. (from guerilla movements to pol. movements) Give him a try!