Endless Chavez

Actually, no. You are not following this at all. Quote me the person that has expressed these thoughts.

That’s actually exactly what this sounds like

“Chavez can’t be held responsible for anything he does until the US meets an arbitrary standard of nonintervention (reverse intervention?) that somehow exceeds the Obama administration’s current stance”. I say arbitrary because nothing will fix what was done in the past, so it’s a pointless standard by which to pretend to judge political events in the present. I say pretend because by reflexively saying everything is happening as a direct response to Nixon’s Cold War fuckyoupolitik, you remove agency (among other things) and the existing complexity from the various actors involved to no end beyond justifying your ideological preconceptions. There’s a reason masturbation is regarded as an act best conducted privately.

Aren’t you saying that nobody can be blamed for what’s going on in South America other than the US? Ergo, Chavez is blameless at best and a pawn at worst?

Which you will then promptly blame the CIA for.

No, but responding to criticism of Chavez with “Well, you can’t talk about Chavez without rehashing Allende, the Bay of Pigs, and United Fruit” is an equally ridiculous doctrine. It excuses Chavez’ excesses by changing the subject. Yes, the US has a long and sordid history of intereference in Central and South America. (Which, mind you, largely ended in the late 1980s. Bush had little interest in South America, or any country not named Iraq.)

All of this has little to do with Chavez’ trashing of the Venzuelan economy and general foreign policy buffoonery, save for his own rhetoric blaming “Uncle Sam” for everything wrong in Venezuela.

Not likely - they’re too incompetent to do it!

After re-reading my original post and these comments, I realized that what I wrote was pretty wrong. I didn’t mean to imply that Chavez’s sin’s be excused in light of blame directed at the US. You guys were correct to call into question what I was saying.

Although I believe America has had a horrible record in dealing with the people of South America up to the present day, I do think that Chavez’s decisions are his alone. He is solely and directly responsible for how those decisions affect Venezuelans and other people in South American countries.

I don’t actually know what the correct response is to this having seen it so rarely, but that’s pretty classy.

Cubit is pretty spot on, I have to say. Sins are sins, and there should be no excuses for them.

Here’s a tough question, though. If Chavez wants to push a socialist agenda, how could/should he have gone about doing it? What do you think he could have done differently?

After the coup attempt (not his) he seemed to be standing pretty tall, not doing too much to retaliate against his opponents. But it didn’t take long for him to start consolidating power.

  • Less expansionist/antagonistic/anti-American foreign policy - does nothing save play to Chavez’ ego
  • Tolerance of dissident media outlets

Both of those could easily happen in the context of Chavez’ economic agenda. Which, in the long run, is more destructive to Venezuela then the above two points (ruinous price controls based on petrodollars that will go away, nationalization introducing ineffective state control of the economy) but, given the theoretical “ethical Chavista” question is a fair point.

Hypothetical situations are fun!

I for one don’t care for it. Everyone knows that the internet is fueled by unapologetic emotion filled hyperbole (and pornography) so this “classy” behavior is counter-productive and potentially destructive. Stop encouraging him LK!

I keed! I keed! I do appreciate the Cubit’s attitude and response. But I also think it’s funny that the thread stalled for almost 24 hours after his last post :)

In response to the simmering of vitriol in this thread, Chavez has made a statement.

Quotes in the local paper that didn’t make it to this article:

Chavez - We will not be a colony for the yankees. We will not be a colony for anyone.

Chavez - We are ready to die for our freedom.

Also mentioned in local newspapers was the fact that Chavez is reacting to this base business, as well as an accusation by Israel that says Venezuela is harboring as Hezbolla cell in his borders.

Can we call Chavez’s forces some insulting racial slur every time we refer to them, if he keeps referring to the US as “Yankees”?

Just checking.

I don’t fault Chavez for questioning the bases in Colombia. We’d do the same if Mexico leased land to China for military bases.

p.s. Lum only considers “Yankee” a racial slur because he lives in Texas. Damn Southerners!

I was curious about that, I’ve never considered Yankee any sort of slur.

BTW, anyone else following the Ecuador/Venezula vs. Columbia over Farc? You have Farc’s #2 guy reading how their support of Correa was exposed and that’s too bad. Interpol backs up the computer’s files as being authentic. Ecuador of course denies this totally. Which pretty much totally undercuts Chavez’s complaints of military bases in Columbia.

Speaking of the Dictator, more good news: Firing judges who make the mistake of following that law thingie instead of Chavez’s order (But note: I’m sure the elections in Venezula are completely fair! ):

The Associated Press
Monday, July 20, 2009; 7:06 PM

CARACAS, Venezuela – A judge handling one of Venezuela’s most politically charged cases said Monday that she was fired after complaining about pressure to rule against an opponent of President Hugo Chavez.

Alicia Torres said she received notification from the Supreme Court that her appointment as a judge had been revoked. She did not provide details, but she called her removal illegal and vowed to challenge the move.

Representatives of the government and the Supreme Court could not be reached for comment.

Torres said last week she was pressured by a superior to prohibit Guillermo Zuloaga, president and owner of the Globovision TV channel, from leaving the country. Prosecutors have accused Zuloaga of usury and conspiracy to commit a crime - accusations stemming from the recent seizure of 24 new vehicles on his property.

Zuloaga denies any wrongdoing, saying the accusations are politically motivated. He and other government adversaries claim that Chavez is using prosecutors and judges to bring trumped-up charges against prominent opponents.

Globovision is the only strongly anti-Chavez channel remaining on the open airwaves.

Dude gets more like a dictator every day.

Colombia is not to Venezuela what Mexico is to the United States, first of all.

Secondly, the US already had an equivalent presence in Colombia for quite some time. Chavez’s protests stem from the media the deal has been getting lately.

New development today:

Ecuador - Well… uh, maybe someone TRICKED the FARC into believing they were giving money to the Correa campaign! Yeah, those Colombian guerrilla guys are so tame that someone ran a scam on them.