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Archive for the tag “Hugo Chavez”

The phony liberators

When Hugo Chávez first became president of Venezuela in 1999, he seemed to be a champion of democracy, and in initial reforms he tried to introduce a more participatory style of democracy.

But that didn’t last, and when he publicly sided with political leaders whose main aim was to suppress anything resembling participatory democracy, like Robert Mugabe of Zimbabwe and Muammar Gaddafi of Libya, he showed his true colours. Those who praised him for his initial championing of democracy have now become his fiercest critics, as he has clearly joined the side of the suppressors of democracy.

Noam Chomsky denounces old friend Hugo Chávez for ‘assault’ on democracy | The Observer:

Hugo Chávez has long considered Noam Chomsky one of his best friends in the west. He has basked in the renowned scholar’s praise for Venezuela’s socialist revolution and echoed his denunciations of US imperialism…

The president may be about to have second thoughts about that, because his favourite intellectual has now turned his guns on Chávez.

Speaking to the Observer last week, Chomsky has accused the socialist leader of amassing too much power and of making an “assault” on Venezuela’s democracy.

Perhaps this is yet another illustration of what was said by the Brazilian educationist Paolo Freire,

The oppressed, having internalized the image of the oppressor and adopted his guidelines, are fearful of freedom. Freedom would require them to eject this image and replace it with autonomy and responsibility. Freedom is acquired by conquest, not by gift. It must be pursued constantly and responsibly. Freedom is not an ideal located outside of man, nor is it an idea which becomes myth. It is rather the indispensable condition for the quest for human completion (P. Freire, Pedagogy of the oppressed, 1998, p. 29).

Unless the oppressed can get beyond this barrier, then even if they succeed in overthroring their oppressors, they will simply become oppressors in their turn, and hence phony liberators.

And George Orwell said much the same thing in his Animal farm.

There are some pictures of Hugo Chávez in which he seems to bear an uncanny resemblance to the late Eugene Terreblanche. Or Julius Malema.

Chavez loses Venezuelan reform referendum

One of the disturbing things about President Hugo Chavez of Venezuela is his publicly expressed support for Robert Mugabe of Zimbabwe. And it was when Mugabe lost a referendum over constitutional changes that would have increased his powers and extended his term of office indefinitely that his regime of repression really began in Zimbabwe.

One hopes that Chavez does not follow Mugabe’s example.

clipped from www.presstv.ir
Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez has conceded defeat in a referendum that aimed at expanding his power, saying he cannot do it for now.
Chavez admitted his defeat in a weekend referendum in a media conference broadcast live Sunday.
“I don’t feel sad, no, I don’t feel sad,” he said, stressing that there were “minimal differences” in the final result, put at 51 percent against and 49 percent in favor moments earlier by the National Electoral Council.

The reforms would let Chavez run for re-election indefinitely, control foreign currency reserves, appoint loyalists over regional elected officials, and censor the media if he declares an emergency.

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It had to happen: devil demands apology from Chavez

You know that the culture of demanding apologies has gone too far when the devil demands an apology from Chavez.

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