Saturday, November 24, 2007

Venezuela on the brink

While venezuelans prepare to take to the polls on December 2nd, they are really preparing to "take back" democracy. Chavez's constitutional ammendments not only places him as "president for life" but also curtails civil liberties. The ACLU would have a field day if anyone in the US would even consider putting some of these items in the ballot. As explained by the Chicago Tribune:
The changes would not only repeal the two-term limit on his office, allowing him
to serve for life, but also transfer virtually all power to one person: the
president. He would gain the authority to supersede local governments on a whim,
declare a state of emergency anytime it suits him and seize farms and processing
plants if he deems it necessary for "food security."
But more than that, Venezuela's National Assembly is considering allocating at least 250 million dollars (close to 500 million if resources are included) to export their "revolution" to other countires primarily in Latin America.

Excuse me? Wouldn't those 250 million dollars be better served domestically, improving healthcare, education, or the life of the poor? Why wouldn't venezuelans, even chavistas, protest this?

As the closing of Chapman's editorials states:
A phony revolution may nonetheless be a durable one. If the Venezuelans who go
to the polls next Sunday give Chavez what he wants, they are likely to discover
a paradox: They can bring about dictatorship through democracy, but not the
. (Emph mine)

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