December 3, 2007

Chavez Defeated

Marc Comtois

Hugo Chavez's attempt to reshape the Venezuelan constitution has failed. This despite the fact that, according to Providence City Council member Miguel C. Luna:

[T]he reforms would deepen the social and economic changes under President Chavez that have just begun to affect the population, lessening poverty and affording more human rights to the majority. Discrimination based on sexual orientation and health would be criminalized while community organizations would receive direct funding for social-development projects.
Apparently the poor didn't get the message:
The loss signals waning support for Chavez's drive to bring socialism to the region's fourth-biggest economy by concentrating power in his hands and ramping up state control of private lives. Voters refused to abolish presidential term limits or allow government censorship during declared emergencies. Chavez also sought to shorten the work day and end central bank autonomy.

``This is the first significant setback that Chavez has ever had,'' said Adam Isacson, director at the Center for International Policy in Washington. ``He has lost popular support. He has lost support of some of the army and the poor.''

Never fear, Mr. Luna, I have a feeling the Chavez will try again:
``This is a democracy,'' the president said in Caracas. ``For me, this isn't a defeat. This is for now.''
I bet.

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I can't imagine that intelligent, well-informed voters would look at the Cuban model and say "No, we don't want that."

Why wouldn't they want a lifetime whack-job in charge? I find it interesting that the SAME people who will openly proclaim "Selected not elected" about GWB are in favor of allowing Hugo to put himself in a position to fix elections so that he can remain in power indefinitely despite public desires to the contrary.

The people of Venezuela dodged a bullet yesterday. Now they just need to vote out that crackpot before he does something they can't back out of.

Posted by: Greg at December 3, 2007 9:35 AM


Posted by: Monique at December 3, 2007 10:35 AM

Viva la democracy!
Hugo overreached, badly. This president-for-life garbage doesn't fly on either side of the political spectrum.

Posted by: rhody at December 3, 2007 11:39 AM

Luna should be embarrassed (and the electorate in Providence for giving him a base of support), but I know he's not. Let's face it, he's an anti-American, anti-capitalist socialist. His raison d'etre is to take what you have and give it to someone government thinks is more worthy.

Although I'm sure that he's very disappointed that Venezuelans didn't vote in an ego maniacal socialist dictator for life, Luna should simply be happy that we don't still enforce the Alien and Sedition Acts.

Posted by: Will at December 3, 2007 12:03 PM

How many will die in the upcoming purge of those that Chavez says committed "treason?"

Posted by: John at December 3, 2007 12:22 PM

Hugo overreached, badly. This president-for-life garbage doesn't fly on either side of the political spectrum.

Posted by rhody at December 3, 2007 11:39 AM
You are nuts Rhody. The Phoenix, Daily Kos, RI Future and the rest have not uttered a single word against this power grab. They support it. Just like they support Che and his pal Castro. Have you ever seen a single demonstration at the Cuban diplomatic mission in NY demanding free elections? Right to travel and emigrate? Have you seen Segal and the rest introducing resolutions calling for international boycotts of this prison island?
No, no and no.
You need to make up your mind Rhody. You can be a George McGovern type "liberal" and remain a democrat (small d) but you cannot join the "Free Mumia" whack jobs that are the "progressives" and remain a democrat.
They are Stalinists without the hammer and sickle. If you doubt that, go to RI Future and try to round up some opposition to Castro's prison isle among Jerzyk and his ilk. Try to get Segal to introduce a resolution on Cuba.
If you are really of good faith, you will have your answer on the true nature of these creatures.

Posted by: Mike at December 3, 2007 2:52 PM

Does anybody really take RI Future seriously. You have to believe those wackjobs sit down, look at an issue, and say to themselves, "what is the most outrageously stupid view we can put forth on this", and they then post it as the "progressive" phoilosophy.
I give them credit for the creativity.

Posted by: Mike Cappelli at December 3, 2007 4:54 PM

Mike, if you could please put down the cough syrup for a second, you'd remember I march in lockstep with no one (I find RI's Future a little too Dem right or wrong sometimes myself).
Or would you really back an American president of your own ideological bent attempting to pull off the move Chavez just tried and failed badly at?

Posted by: rhody at December 4, 2007 11:34 AM
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