The Venezuela Thread


Well the taking of the GPO wasn’t decided upon by a popular national vote, was it legitimate?


Of course not. It was an act of rebellion against the State and as such it is legislated against with Acts of Law.


Had there been a popular vote there would have been no need.

#44 … -tariq-ali

This is an excellent tribute to Hugo Chavez and to one person’s direct experience of him. I’d ask anyone who is interested to read it with an open mind. IMO many people have been convinced by relentless negative media coverage of his regime that has been driven by a very complex set of agendas.


that’s a charitable way of putting it.

Look while his intentions may have been good “helping the poor” - who can disagree with that, why can’t people accept that he pissed away an oil boom? Look at the price when he came to power - less than 10$ and now approx 100$; yet PDVSA is crocked … il/6229813
and the economy as a whole is a textbook example of the “resource curse”

It’s ironic - those who can dismiss Bertie as a populist who bribed people with their own money can’t see this clown for what he was - a divisive authoritarian who played hard and fast with the rules of democracy
(and led a coup d’etat of his own :unamused: ) … zuela-oil/

#46 … at/273745/

some gems here

this from a guy basically giving away petrol…


Including a coup d’etat against him organised by Bush, and immediately approved by Aznar, who is a particularly nasty piece of work.


What you are sayng is that he used money from selling their oil to improve health, education and housing for the poorer sections of society. That is what he said he would do, and he didn’t put the whole country into hock to do so: he used resources that he had to do so. What is wrong with that?
And yes, he did lead a failed coup d’etat; however, he later got into the democratic process, won, and a coup was organised against him. His popularity - and the total lack of legitmacy of the people/puppets who tried to depose him - are what led to his reinstatement. The bit about him being divisive is strange - he seems to have captured large majorities again and again. The losers had their nose put out of joint, but that does not make him any more divisive than they were - his thesis was, if I have my facts right, that society was being run for the benefit of a small group of the better off. That sounds pretty divisive to me, and I have not seen anywhere that the situation was otherwise.
I’ve seen plenty of Venezuelan culebrones in my time, and they portray a society of wealthy wasters, where even the servants live in huge houses. Totally unreal.
As for the comparison with Bertie, you’ve completely lost me there. But I know nothing about the economy of Venezuela: maybe they too had a building boom that ate up everyone’s wages for a generation to come. If so, I hope you will provide some links to genuine information on the matter.

I’m not sure what your point is here. He used the oil to pay for what he believed he needed to do, and they have left quite a bit in the ground that would no longer be there otherwise. That sounds like a good policy to me in relation to a wasting resource.
I’m don’t understand the bit about the explosion in the oil refinery either - are you suggesting that Chavez blew it up? Or was it a foolish move to import refined oil after the explosion?


Jesus, wasn’t he the fool to leave the oil languishing in the ground when he could have sold it.

Fuck me, why was he giving away petrol, when he could have left it in the ground for future generations?

God, it can be hard to make up your mind on occasion, can’t it?


Eh, my point was that he could be selling it at market prices, and use that money to better the country.
By giving it away (in Venezuela) for pennies a gallon he encouraged wasteful consumption on an epic scale, look at the average size car there. Are you actually saying that his policy of ultra low gasoline prices is for the betterment of Venezuelan society ? :open_mouth: :smiley:
Does Norway give petrol away for pennies?

re falling production - do you realise that production is not down by choice but because PDVSA can’t get it out at the rate it would like!? (because of underinvestment etc) Read the Platts article if you want to know about the VZ oil industry.

The non oil economy in Venezuela is fucked. They’ve had to devalue again recently, there’s f all manufacturing, retailers can’t make a living because of arbitrary price controls. Tourism? Crime? Look at the politicalisation of the courts, of the Central Bank!

You can admire some of his intentions, but to pretend the results are anything but a disaster is delusional.


Typical Chavez-type quote I read yesterday…“If the world’s climate was a bank, it would have been saved already”… :slight_smile:



If the rebels are murdering that does not make it ok for Bashar to murder. Nor does it make it ok for Chavez to have supported that murder.

We should demand and expect the very best from leaders at home and abroad. Making false heroes from villains isnt good enough. 14 years in power too is probably too long. In all that time he never strengthened the Venezuelan democracy. Not very long ago he said the country was at risk of civil if he didnt win the election.

A real slap in the face for democracy. Only fools think he was a great man. And just because some villains in the West didnt like him doesnt make him right. Two wrongs etc… … P220120910

That sort of electioneering isn`t right from anybody.


Nice to see some satire still packs a punch.


Chavez was right about some things, the oil wealth of Venezuela should be shared with all the country not just the rich elite

but after that he was just another hard left idiot, Lula da Silva helped far more poor people in Brazil, and he did it with far less money, one of the ways he did this was to control inflation, the other was his bolsa familia program

with a good leader Venezuela could be the richest country in south america, but for different reasons both the left or the right will not produce the man for the job


Is Chavez any worse that the oil sheiks ?

By one simplistic measure he did a good job … ugo-chavez

Hopefully a better educated and less poverty stricken Venezuela can become a better place to live.


Satire is dead etc. Construction beats vaccination anyday. Build baby build.

"Chavez invested Venezuela’s oil wealth into social programs including state-run food markets, cash benefits for poor families, free health clinics and education programs. But those gains were meager compared with the spectacular construction projects that oil riches spurred in glittering Middle Eastern cities, including the world’s tallest building in Dubai and plans for branches of the Louvre and Guggenheim museums in Abu Dhabi. … =173521347


Just wondering, on “ladies bikes” there used not be crossbars, I presume from an old fashioned Modesty thing, so crossbars as such are not structurally necessary. So why have them. Throwing the auld leg over is ok for a fit 50 something like moi but for those of a certain age or with a hip condition must be damn difficult. So why have crossbars at all??


apologies meant to open a new thread and have now done so, sorry for the confusion


Just because one person is bad doesnt make it ok for someone else to be. An extreme example of this is Stalin and Hitler. Do you really think because Stalin was a madman that it was ok for Hitler to be the same? No I dont expect you hold that view so why hold that view regarding Chavez. Same goes for those claiming Assad is somehow a legitimate leader.

The wealth gap comparison is ridiculous. Communism could bring is to a zero gap but is destructive to the fabric of society. It might work well for lazy people and crooked politicians but that is about it. Another way of looking at it is would you rather live in the first world with a large wealth gap or in sub-Saharan Africa with a smaller gap?


It could be said that there is no poverty in North Korea because outside of the ruling elite there are no rich people for comparison, either you have power or you have none.

For all the failings of running a giveaway economy there is something to be said for at least trying to alleviate poverty. However once it’s given away how will the Chavez benefactors react to failing government. A lapse back into poverty and more crucially a crippling poverty where everyone expects government to come to the rescue. It seems vital to whoever takes over that the Chavez myth be exploited to counter the glaringly obvious economic deterioration; if the Vietnamese could rule in memory of a peoples hero then I see no reason why things can’t just trundle along for a few decades until, like Vietnam, suddenly the USA is a buddy again.