Venezuela right-wing opposition wins control of National Assembly by a landslide

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RDP

Hey swallow;  Why not just have any group of 10 people or more set their own rules  Let's see how that works.

RDP

Kropotkin:  You do know that oligarchs need the power of government to remain oligarchs right?  The bigger a company get (or any institution) the more inefficient it gets.  This creates opportunities for competitors.

RDP

Conservatives want the supreme court to interpret the constitution a lot more literally than they do now.  It is hard to imagine that the founders of the nation and the writers of the constitution gave consideration to abortion when writing the constitution.  If so, the supreme court should say the constitution does not deal with this matter and refer the matter back to elected representatives for a potential amendment to the constitution.  That would be the proper way to do it.  Of course, pro-choice proponents are not too optimistic about the outcome of this course of action.  Roe vs. Wade is bad law whether you agree or disagree with abortion. 

6079_Smith_W

This is so fucking stupid.

Is there any point in repeating that the decision wasn't made on the question of abortion, but rather the rights of the woman who is carrying that fetus?

And if those who wrote the constitution didn't choose to change the born alive laws (which were on the books then, which they were aware of, and which have been around for the better part of a millenium), and enshrine them alongside actual rights of the person, what does that tell you?

 

 

kropotkin1951 kropotkin1951's picture

RDP wrote:

Kropotkin:  You do know that oligarchs need the power of government to remain oligarchs right?  The bigger a company get (or any institution) the more inefficient it gets.  This creates opportunities for competitors.

If only there wasn't that elephant in the room. Your theories do not include genocide and ethnic cleansing. You know the actual reasons why American capitalists became so rich and powerful.

Mr. Magoo Mr. Magoo's picture

Quote:
At the municipal level?  Now you are being silly.

"If government is to exercise power, better in the county than in the state..."

Dude, you're the one who quoted him.

kropotkin1951 kropotkin1951's picture

RDP wrote:

If so, the supreme court should say the constitution does not deal with this matter and refer the matter back to elected representatives for a potential amendment to the constitution.  

So what is the holdup? Roe v Wade has been around for almost two generations now. Don't you think it is about time you started a campaign to add an Amendment to the Constitution giving more rights to the fetus than the woman whose body it is in. Or do you understand that proposed Amendment would be doomed to failure?

Unionist

Underutilization of abortion is clearly one of the main problems afflicting Amerika in recent generations.

RDP

The holdup?  No one is waiting for anything.  I said the supreme court should've sent it back to elected representatives.  They didn't.

RDP

Many laws are imposed better at the state level than the local level.  

RDP

"Underutilization of abortion is clearly one of the main problems afflicting Amerika in recent generations."  What in the world does that mean?

RDP

"If only there wasn't that elephant in the room. Your theories do not include genocide and ethnic cleansing. You know the actual reasons why American capitalists became so rich and powerful."

 

Don't forget about global warming,gender equality, gender neutrality, safe spaces and cultural genocide.  Free the whales too.

kropotkin1951 kropotkin1951's picture

RDP wrote:

The holdup?  No one is waiting for anything.  I said the supreme court should've sent it back to elected representatives.  They didn't.

There you go acting like a right wing jerk always blaming someone else for your lack of action. Your Supreme Court can be overridden by an Amendment on the woman's rights issues that Roe v. Wade deals with.  Of course it's really hard to campaign saying you want to strip half the population of their Constitutional rights merely because of some people's religious views. 

Strange that someone like yourself who is worried about excessive concentration of power rails against Roe v. Wade but doesn't talk about Citizen's United. One is an issue of an individual's right to decide over what happens to ones body that you want overturned. The other is an issue of corporate rights that you are silent on. Citizens United is the greatest centralizing force your Supreme Court has ever unleashed on the democratic process.

kropotkin1951 kropotkin1951's picture

RDP wrote:

Don't forget about global warming,gender equality, gender neutrality, safe spaces and cultural genocide.  Free the whales too.

I gather what you really meant is:

Mr. Magoo Mr. Magoo's picture

So first you describe him as "one of the fathers of modern economic conservatism." then you see fit to edit him?

Which laws did FRIEDMAN say were best imposed at the state level?

RDP

He didn't.  I quoted you the full quote.  He is one of the fathers of modern economic conservatism...not law.

RDP

What exactly is your massive beef with Citizens United?

 

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Citizens_United_(organization)

Rev Pesky

RDP wrote:

He didn't.  I quoted you the full quote.  He is one of the fathers of modern economic conservatism...not law.

What did Friedman have to say about the USA $600 billion military budget? Was he concerned about the centralization of military spending?

Mr. Magoo Mr. Magoo's picture

Quote:
I quoted you the full quote.

I read it.  He pretty clearly suggests that municipal laws are better than state laws (which are better than federal laws).

If he made no exceptions then I assume there are no exceptions.

Anyway, while it's always fun to debate how many jurisdictions can fit on the head of a pin, any thoughts on Venezuela?  Me, I'm thinking that the fact that Maduro can step on his own dick with both feet is more interesting, but you seem to want this to be the "centralized vs. decentralized" thread.

Did you know that you can start your own thread?

RDP

National defense is rightly a federal matter.

 

RDP

I think about 90% of my posts are responses.  Don't blame me.

sherpa-finn

That moment when you wander onto a Babble thread after a long absence and go ... 

Mr. Magoo Mr. Magoo's picture

Quote:
I think about 90% of my posts are responses.

No they aren't.  You swing by about every ten days to say "Look, dogs are starving in Venezuela, so clearly Socialism can't work, and why won't babblers just admit this?????" or whatever.

laine lowe laine lowe's picture

sherpa-finn wrote:

That moment when you wander onto a Babble thread after a long absence and go ... 

THIS!

kropotkin1951 kropotkin1951's picture

RDP wrote:

What exactly is your massive beef with Citizens United?

 

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Citizens_United_(organization)

Because a democracy cannot function when billionaires are allowed to spend as much money as they want to to get their sycophants elected. The power centralizes in the hands of the deep pocketed billionaires. Apparently you only worry about centralizing power in the hands of democratically elected governments not corporate board rooms.

Unionist

Mr. Magoo wrote:

Quote:
I think about 90% of my posts are responses.

No they aren't.  You swing by about every ten days to say "Look, dogs are starving in Venezuela, so clearly Socialism can't work, and why won't babblers just admit this?????" or whatever.

Magoo, why would you deny trolls their daily bread? Do you have any idea what the unemployment rate is these days? Poor guy's just trying to make a living. And fucking up babble threads? Can't pay big coin IMHO.

I'm starting a crowdfunding thingy.

 

RDP

Citizens united is a (right wing) political action committee.  Just like these 3 or 400  https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_political_action_committees

RDP

No they aren't.  You swing by about every ten days to say "Look, dogs are starving in Venezuela, so clearly Socialism can't work, and why won't babblers just admit this?????" or whatever.

 

Yes, and then I respond to on average 9 posts in response to mine.  ie. 90% of my posts are responses.

kropotkin1951 kropotkin1951's picture

RDP wrote:

Citizens united is a (right wing) political action committee.  Just like these 3 or 400  https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_political_action_committees

You think allowing rich people to buy your elections is somehow a good thing. I will admit for democracies that level of overt corruption shows that the US is exceptional. I guess you just are too ideologically driven to understand that money buys power and that money in politics buys political power. Your Congress is bought and paid for by your oligarchs but if you love corporations as you appear to then you think they should rule. From that pro-corporate postion I can see where you get to, "what's the problem"? I guess what you can't admit is that you actually don't want a democracy you actually want an oligarchic form of government run by the richest people in your country.

6079_Smith_W

RDP wrote:

Yes, and then I respond to on average 9 posts in response to mine.  ie. 90% of my posts are responses.

You trolling and then stoking the fire is response? I call bullshit.

 

RDP

Hey Kropotkin:  How did Obama win?  Every decision he has made in the spectrum of economy vs. the environment has been in favour of the environment.  I doubt the oligarchs are advocating for more regulation and more tax.

MegB

RDP, I'm afraid your trolling days are over. Buh bye.

 

Rev Pesky

RDP wrote:

National defense is rightly a federal matter. 

That is not responsive to the question. The question wasn't what you thought of the USA military budget, but what Friedman thought of it.

I take it that he didn't even mention it.

Mr. Magoo Mr. Magoo's picture

Quote:

Under Venezuela's constitution, a recall referendum can be held once a president has served half of his term in office and the requisite steps are met.

So far, the opposition has completed step one of the process.

The opposition was scheduled to start stage two of the process on 26 October.

But last week, the electoral authorities announced that the signature drive had been suspended after allegations of fraud in the first stage.

The opposition gathered many times more signatures than were necessary for this first step, so I'm kind of wondering why, if some of them were "Johnny Bananas", that's a show-stopper.  Were there enough legitimate signatures to proceed to the next step?  And if there really weren't then why did they initally approve the next step?

Evidently not.  And Venezuela has also ignored their own Constitution a second time by choosing to not hold mandated elections in December.

Seems like when Maduro isn't wrapping himself in the Constitution, he's happy to wrap fish in it.

 

Mr. Magoo Mr. Magoo's picture

Venezuela bans country's most used banknote, the 100 Bolivar.

Quote:
Indeed, their latest stroke — based in part on a bizarre conspiracy theory — was to outlaw most of the nation's cash before getting around to introducing new banknotes. The surprise move, announced last Sunday, turned Venezuela into a largely cashless society just before Christmas, with people struggling to pay for goods with old banknotes that store owners no longer accept. Frustrated Venezuelans have blocked streets and looted stores in six cities this week, leading to 32 arrests.

So here's the plan:

1.  promptly, and with almost no warning, ban the use of the banknote that makes up over 70% of banknotes in circulation

2.  promise (but do not deliver) a replacement

3.  continue issuing the banned notes at ATMs

4.  watch as the "mafias" and other banknote hoarders have no choice but to accept their defeat

5.  Happy Holidays, everyone!

Genius!

As has been pointed out by many, the idea that anyone would hoard their wealth in a banknote that depreciates in value daily is hilarious.  Better that you pour all of your wealth into fresh milk, stored at room temperature.  Good grief.

ed'd to add:

Looks like they walked it back today.

It's a Festivus Miracle!

Mr. Magoo Mr. Magoo's picture

Quote:
Along with with the highest international records for inflation in existence today in a national economy and the largest number of deaths caused by homicides and criminal acts, this situation multiplies the human suffering, the poverty and desperation of citizens who cannot rely on the protection of the institutions which do not respond to the many emergencies that afflict the Venezuelan people and which reflect the characteristics of a failed state.

CNN?  WaPo?  ZeroHedge?  Nope.

kropotkin1951 kropotkin1951's picture

Mr. Magoo wrote:

Quote:
Along with with the highest international records for inflation in existence today in a national economy and the largest number of deaths caused by homicides and criminal acts, this situation multiplies the human suffering, the poverty and desperation of citizens who cannot rely on the protection of the institutions which do not respond to the many emergencies that afflict the Venezuelan people and which reflect the characteristics of a failed state.

CNN?  WaPo?  ZeroHedge?  Nope.

Interesting op-ed piece. Of course it is merely the opinion of the author and the group he writes for.

Here is a short bio of their President. The NDP is a member of this "socialist" group. If only the Venezuelan government was as good as the Greek government was when the government debt crisis hit them. All Venezuela needs to do is call in the international financiers and pledge allegiance to the global neo-colonial system and all of the people's woes will disappear in a capitalist nirvana where the invisible hand makes life easy.

Quote:

George A. Papandreou, former Prime Minister of Greece, is President of the Socialist International, first elected in January 2006, and re-elected at the XXIV Congress. Luis Ayala (Chile) is the Secretary General, re-elected at the last Congress. The Vice-Presidents, who are also elected by the Congress, together with the President and the Secretary General, make up the Presidium of the International, the leadership of the organisation. 
George A. Papandreou, former Prime Minister of Greece, is President of the Socialist International, first elected in January 2006, and re-elected at the XXIV Congress. Luis Ayala (Chile) is the Secretary General, re-elected at the last Congress. The Vice-Presidents, who are also elected by the Congress, together with the President and the Secretary General, make up the Presidium of the International, the leadership of the organisation. 

On 6 October 2009, George Papandreou became the 182nd Prime Minister of Greece. He was the third member of the Papandreou family to serve as the country's prime minister, following his father Andreas and his grandfather Georgios Papandreou. He resigned on 11 November 2011 during the Greek government debt crisis to make way for a national unity government.

Here is how Greece is doing since its government embraced the neo-con solutions that a new right wing Venezuelan government would implement, at least in part.

Quote:

They are far from being alone. A year after debt-stricken Greece received its third financial rescue in the form of international funding worth €86bn, such survival techniques have become commonplace. For a middle class eviscerated by relentless rounds of cuts and tax rises – the price of the country’s ongoing struggle to avert bankruptcy – the draconian conditions attached to the latest bailout are invariably invoked in their defence. Measures ranging from the overhaul of the pension system to indirect duties – slapped on beer, fuel and almost everything in between – and a controversial increase in VAT are similarly cited by Greeks now reneging on loan repayments, property taxes and energy bills.

Against a backdrop of monumental debt – €320bn, or 180% of GDP, the accumulation of decades of profligacy – fatalism is fast replacing pessimism on the streets. “Our country is doomed,” sighs Savvas Tzironis, summing up the mood. “Everything goes from bad to worse.”

Close to half a million Greeks are believed to have migrated since the crisis begun, thanks to the searing effect of persistent unemployment (at just under 24%, the highest in Europe) and an economy that has shed more than a third of its total output over the past six years. The nation has been assigned some €326bn in bailout loans since May 2010 – the biggest rescue programme in global financial history. Yet the fear that it is locked in an economic death spiral was given further credence last week when Eurobank analysts announced that consumption and exports had also fallen, by 6.4% and 7.2%, in the second quarter of the year.

The duration and depth of the recession is such that the World Bank now compares it to the slumps seen in eastern European countries in the early 1990s. The poorest 20% of Greece’s 11 million people have suffered a 42% drop in disposable income since 2009.

“If we continue down this road, a fourth, even a fifth, bailout should be expected,” says Aristides Hatzis, associate professor of law and economics at Athens University. “I don’t see any progress. The economy is stagnant, the private sector devastated, the public administration underfunded and ineffective. And there is always the spectre of Grexit at the end of the tunnel.”

https://www.theguardian.com/business/2016/aug/13/greek-economy-still-spi...

 

Mr. Magoo Mr. Magoo's picture

Quote:
Interesting op-ed piece. Of course it is merely the opinion of the author and the group he writes for.

Fair enough.  But I thought it was interesting that this time, the author wasn't "Tyler Durden", and the group he writes for wasn't "ZeroHedge".

Quote:
All Venezuela needs to do is call in the international financiers and pledge allegiance to the global neo-colonial system and all of the people's woes will disappear in a capitalist nirvana where the invisible hand makes life easy.

I don't think anyone's suggesting that as the best remedy.  Certainly I'm not.

But there are, it seems, things that Venezuela could do to help their situation -- things that aren't even incompatible with the best interests of the people, or Socialism.  Things like "stop printing more banknotes until you have the goods to back them" and "don't fix prices for goods without compensating producers" and "stick to one official exchange rate".

But Venezuela is a very charged issue.  Many, including their government, continue to prefer to see all of their woes as the result of foreign imperialism, when it's really not.  There was just as much, if not MORE, foreign imperialism back when they were high off the hog.

kropotkin1951 kropotkin1951's picture

Mr. Magoo wrote:

But Venezuela is a very charged issue.  Many, including their government, continue to prefer to see all of their woes as the result of foreign imperialism, when it's really not.  There was just as much, if not MORE, foreign imperialism back when they were high off the hog.

So what do you think are the causes of Venezuela's woes?  

I think the problems they have are rooted in colonialism and racism and only secondarily in foreign imperialism. As Canadians we can only understand Venezuela if you think of the way we treat indigenous communities and then imagine that kind of treatment being extended to the majority of the population. The ruling class in Venezuela had centuries to show how great a job they could do. Now that their ancestors are on the verge of regaining power from the lower classes it will be interesting to see how many boats their economic policies will float. 

Sean in Ottawa

kropotkin1951 wrote:

Mr. Magoo wrote:

But Venezuela is a very charged issue.  Many, including their government, continue to prefer to see all of their woes as the result of foreign imperialism, when it's really not.  There was just as much, if not MORE, foreign imperialism back when they were high off the hog.

So what do you think are the causes of Venezuela's woes?  

I think the problems they have are rooted in colonialism and racism and only secondarily in foreign imperialism. As Canadians we can only understand Venezuela if you think of the way we treat indigenous communities and then imagine that kind of treatment being extended to the majority of the population. The ruling class in Venezuela had centuries to show how great a job they could do. Now that their ancestors are on the verge of regaining power from the lower classes it will be interesting to see how many boats their economic policies will float. 

I don't mean to challenge or disagree but can you explore more the difference between foreign imperialism and colonialism? As I understand it, these both oppression except in colonialism the control of the country is taken whereas with imperialism there is external political/economic subjegation and exploitation. Again as I understand it, colonialism can leave a country in a position where they are more vulnerable to imperialism. Many post colonial countries gained independece from colonialism only to be victims of imperialism.

As such, if I am correct, I would see these as related to the same problem and not seperable. Modern capaitalist imperialism is the replacement for out-dated colonialism with similar effects and less responsibility to leave any benefits on the ground. A nasty Colonial power was at least obliged to deliver something "for the subjects of the empire" whereas the post colonial empire merely engages is all possible exploitation with complete denial of any responsibility to leave any resourses in place for the country to survive on.

I am not trying to determine which form of imperialism (the occupying colonial, or the unrestrained violation of a country through economic and political imperialism today. What I am saying is I find it hard to disconnect the two.

Some of this is informed by an especially brilliant thinker from Guyana. His argument is that the current imperialism has been made possible and is a direct result of the Colonialism these countries suffered and in many respects is an extension of Colonialism updated to the present.

I thought I had this understood and I found this interpretation very convincing so if my understanding is wrong please explore more.

Even if I do not have this correct -- I am confident that this issue is the single most important issue in understanding the political context of the world.

 

kropotkin1951 kropotkin1951's picture

It is my view that colonialism has always relied on a local ruling class to do the dirty work of the European imperialists. When countries removed the shackles of imperial rule and became independent the struggle between the colonial overseer class and the impoverished majority is what was left. Of course like many countries with oil reserves Venezuela entered into a new type of imperial relationship after they became independent. Despite the vast oil wealth so far no government has been able to overcome the deep seated inequality that is directly descended from the colonial age.

I liked many of the things that Chavez did with the oil money during the boom prices. However it is clear that not enough fundamental change has occurred to sustain a economic model that goes beyond capitalism. I fear though that when the government changes the poorest people in the country will be made to suffer.  

Mr. Magoo Mr. Magoo's picture

Quote:
So what do you think are the causes of Venezuela's woes?  

I think the problems they have are rooted in colonialism and racism and only secondarily in foreign imperialism.

OK.  But if I'm not mistaken, the Venezuelan Constitution earmarks three representative seats for Indigenous areas/representatives.  And these typically vote in agreement with MUD, rather than PSUV.  So if there's any assumption that it's the indigenous/"brown" Venezuealans versus the affluent/"white" Venezuelans, I'd be hard put to explain why indigenous Venezuelans seem to see their interests better refelected by what we refer to as "the opposition".

As for their woes, I think that they're primarily rooted in economic decisions and fiscal decisions.  Maduro makes a great noise about "mafias" and "smugglers" and other economic traitors, yet he's the one who sells gasoline for pennies on the dollar, and maintains two separate and very different foreign currency exchange rates.

If Canada sold gasoline for less than a tenth of what the country just across the border sells it for, we'd have a smuggling problem too.  Comparatively, life isn't even all that hard here, but free money is free money.

And if Canada had two official exchange rates, it's a sure bet that those who could buy U.S. dollars (or Euros, Yen, doesn't matter) on the cheap would be sorely tempted to sell them for a whole pile more.  A Venezuelan business that can buy hard currency at the lower exchange rate shouldn't be scorned for doing a quick bit of math, and asking whether they'll see a better return on their investment by purchasing raw materials for making widgets on the open market, or by just selling that same hard currency for more than they can make selling widgets (and without even the other added costs of widget production).

And as I've noted lots of times, printing up a whole wack of new banknotes when you aren't producing goods to back them is inflation 101.  It's the monetary equivalent of a Ponzi scheme.  It's not sustainable, and we all know it's not.  Money is a placeholder for goods, and you can't just magically make all the money you want if you're not making the goods.

Finally, if you want to nationalize an industry or business, go for it.  But only if you can maintain or improve the productivity of that industry or business.  A privately owned flour mill might not be helping the people as much as you think it could, but if you can't manage to grind wheat into flour after appropriating them, is the fact that you "showed those capitalists what for" going to mean anything?

kropotkin1951 kropotkin1951's picture

Sorry for the confusion Magoo. I wasn't referring to the small minority of the population that is indigenous and lives in the remote regions. I was referring to the Mestizos as the impoverished descendants of the racist colonial culture.

 

Mr. Magoo Mr. Magoo's picture

OK then.  I don't really have a specific answer for that, other than to suggest that simple numbers suggest that they're growing weary of the government too -- unless they number < 20%.  And this is as good a time as any to add that I'm not a "supporter" of MUD, in the sense of believing them to have the right answers or to be the electorate's best friend.  But I do believe that if the current government can't give the people what they want, they could at least give the people a choice.

But you said above:

Quote:
I fear though that when the government changes

That could mean one of two things:

1.  Venezuela gets a new government -- presumably headed by MUD

2.  The current (functionally governing) government of Venezuela -- PSUV -- actually changes (e.g. does things differently)

Which is your concern?  Or both?

 

Sean in Ottawa

kropotkin1951 wrote:

It is my view that colonialism has always relied on a local ruling class to do the dirty work of the European imperialists. When countries removed the shackles of imperial rule and became independent the struggle between the colonial overseer class and the impoverished majority is what was left. Of course like many countries with oil reserves Venezuela entered into a new type of imperial relationship after they became independent. Despite the vast oil wealth so far no government has been able to overcome the deep seated inequality that is directly descended from the colonial age.

I liked many of the things that Chavez did with the oil money during the boom prices. However it is clear that not enough fundamental change has occurred to sustain a economic model that goes beyond capitalism. I fear though that when the government changes the poorest people in the country will be made to suffer.  

For me this only strengthens the dynamic I believe that the colonial past overshadows and enables the present imperialism such that one is an extension of the others and related -- even though they can be distinguished from each other their role, impact, and power cannot be seperated.

I like the emphasis on this becuase this is the elephant in the room when it comes to every single international discussion you can have.

kropotkin1951 kropotkin1951's picture

Mr. Magoo wrote:

That could mean one of two things:

1.  Venezuela gets a new government -- presumably headed by MUD

2.  The current (functionally governing) government of Venezuela -- PSUV -- actually changes (e.g. does things differently)

Which is your concern?  Or both?

My concern? Hell I thought you were the concern troll. I don't think in those terms.

Mr. Magoo Mr. Magoo's picture

Quote:
I don't think in those terms.

I see.  But you literally said "I fear though..." so I was wondering whether you were referring to a change of government, or the current government changing policies.

kropotkin1951 kropotkin1951's picture

Mr. Magoo wrote:

Quote:
I don't think in those terms.

I see.  But you literally said "I fear though..." so I was wondering whether you were referring to a change of government, or the current government changing policies.

I fear though that when the government changes the poorest people in the country will be made to suffer.  I'm not sure what is unclear about that sentence. The fear is clearly related to what looks like the inevitable change of government that is coming. It is a fear that a new government lead by the main opposition will impose a neo-con agenda and will particularly target every good social program that the Chavez government instituted that have helped alleviate some of the misery of the underclasses.

Mr. Magoo Mr. Magoo's picture

Quote:
The fear is clearly related to what looks like the inevitable change of government that is coming. It is a fear that a new government lead by the main opposition will impose a neo-con agenda and will particularly target every good social program that the Chavez government instituted that have helped alleviate some of the misery of the underclasses.

Well, that's not going to happen for quite a while, if ever.

Notwithstanding an actual coup -- which seems unlikely when the military remains on the side of the government -- there won't be an opportunity for Venezuelans to elect a different party until 2019.  They're already past the deadline by which a recall referendum could be used to choose an entirely new President from a different party.  Even if such a referendum were to happen tomorrow, the only change that would happen would be that the VP would take over the Presidency (and Maduro recently appointed a new VP).

kropotkin1951 kropotkin1951's picture

Mr. Magoo wrote:

Quote:

The fear is clearly related to what looks like the inevitable change of government that is coming. It is a fear that a new government lead by the main opposition will impose a neo-con agenda and will particularly target every good social program that the Chavez government instituted that have helped alleviate some of the misery of the underclasses.

Well, that's not going to happen for quite a while, if ever.

Two years is hardly a long time in electoral cycles. Hell we have longer than to our federal elections.  As for the "if ever" part, I am glad to see you are optimistic that the government will be reelected. I thought the polls said otherwise.

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