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Hugo Chavez's Opponent Plans Major Caracas Rally, Opposition Strength May be Growing (Translation)
El Universal ( Caracas ) ^ | October 2, 2006 | Pedro Pablo Peñaloza ( translated by self )

Posted on 10/02/2006 4:14:13 PM PDT by StJacques

Rosales will lead "Caracas Avalanche" Saturday

Pedro Pablo Peñaloza
El Universal (Caracas)

The director of the First Justice Party, Liliana Hernandez, member of the campaign command of Manuel Rosales, summoned the followers of the opposition candidate to concentrate themselves next Saturday in Libertador Avenue [in Caracas].

Hernandez specified that the act of support for the Governor of the State of Zulia1 will be named the "Caracas Avalanche" and it is scheduled to begin at 10:00 in the morning.

"The idea is that, besides demonstrating in favor of the victory of the National Unity candidate [i.e. Rosales], we are calling people to support the proposal of fighting against the lack of [public] safety pointed out by Rosales," Hernandez insisted.

The campaign command strategy of the leader of the New Time Party (UNTC),2 is attempting to mobilize the population stressing the electoral offer of impelling the defense of life over violence.3

Moreover, the adversaries of President Hugo Chavez are attempting to arouse the enthusiasm of the capital's inhabitants underlining the virtues of the social plan expounded by the Zulian Chief Executive and the initiative of the Mi Negra debit card.4

During the week, Rosales's team will determine the gathering points for sympathizers who will be mustering on Libertador Avenue. Even though they did not offer major details, it is hoped that they will set three or four meeting sites near the metro [transit] stations.

About the quantity of people who will aspire to congregate in Caracas, Hernandez pointed out: "The excitement we have had in the interior [of the country] motivates us. In Tachira I gave an estimate and I was short, here it will be the same."

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Translator's Notes:

1 Manuel Rosales is currently Governor of the Venezuelan state of Zulia, located in the northwestern portion of the country, fronting the border with Colombia.

2 The UNTC is the acronym for Rosales's Un Nuevo Tiempo Contigo Party, whose name literally translates to "A New Time With You." The party is generally referred to as either the "New Time Party" or even the "New Day Party" in the English-speaking press. The UNTC has managed to bring together numerous opposition parties, many of them splinter groups, into a unified opposition to Hugo Chavez as Venezuela approaches the December 3rd elections.

3 Rosales is making a major issue of violent crime in the campaign. See this earlier thread for his law and order platform.

4 Sadly; we cannot describe Manuel Rosales as either a social or economic conservative in terms which we here at Free Republic would recognize. The Mi Negra (my little black card) debit card proposal is the key part of his campaign platform, which represents a multi-pronged attack against Chavez; primarily for his twin failures to deliver the actual support he has promised to Venezuela's poor and his squandering of the country's oil wealth in various ways, including corruption at home and assistance given to leftist regimes and political movements abroad, the ideological basis of which Rosales decried in very strong terms today. Rosales proposes that a substantial portion of revenues from Venezuela's national oil production be administered by a national "Petroleum Fund of the Venezuelans," from which Venezuela's poorest citizens could receive a monthly stipend to cover their most basic necessities. The Venezuelan state would not be empowered to redirect the fund's appropriations. In defense of Rosales however; it should be pointed out that Chavez has already implemented massive and wasteful social spending over the past seven years and Rosales's plan is meant to streamline certain portions of that while providing guarantees that Venezuelans actually will benefit from oil revenues, in addition to removing the power of the Venezuelan state to direct entitlements on the basis of political favoritism. And of course, Chavez's financial support of leftists and even Islamic radicals would come to an end too. If you can read Spanish, you can learn more about this plan here.



TOPICS: Extended News; Foreign Affairs; News/Current Events; Politics/Elections
KEYWORDS: 2006; campaign; chavez; election; hugochavez; hugotrans; manuelrosales; presidentialelection; rosales; stjtranslation; untc; venezuela
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Beyond the dramatic surge of Rosales in recent public opinion polls, see this thread (especially the comments) for more, there is evidence surfacing that Rosales is beginning to attract large crowds in his campaign appearances. In a just-concluded campaign swing through the interior of the country, the crowds greeting Rosales were large enough for the El Universal newspaper in Caracas to report the statement of a Rosales campaign leader that the turnout was "truly torrential."

This is the current framework within which we are looking at the major event Rosales has scheduled to be held in Caracas, which is Hugo Chavez's center of support, this weekend. By using the term "Caracas Avalanche," the Rosales campaign is taking the risk of not performing up to expectations. But it may be that Rosales is attempting to schedule an event whose turnout cannot be kept from the news media. In his recent campaign swing in the interior, Chavez supporters violently attacked television reporters and either damaged or destroyed their video cameras, thus preventing full circulation of the visual images of the crowds meeting Rosales as he worked his way through some of the poorer sections of an interior city.

We will have to wait and see whether Rosales is able to show some political muscle on Chavez's home turf. If he succeeds this Saturday, it could potentially change the entire dynamic of the campaign.
1 posted on 10/02/2006 4:14:15 PM PDT by StJacques
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To: Alia; livius; proud_yank; Kenny Bunk; Founding Father; Kitten Festival; chilepepper; Fiddlstix; ...
A Latin American Left Watch ping for you all.

Anyone wishing to be included on the ping list may either ping me from this thread or contact me via Freepmail.
2 posted on 10/02/2006 4:14:55 PM PDT by StJacques (Liberty is always unfinished business)
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To: StJacques

Rosales is saying Chavez will turn Vz communist. Apparently, a lot of locals in Caracas seem to agree with him, the more he says it, the bigger the crowds grow.


3 posted on 10/02/2006 4:17:09 PM PDT by Kitten Festival
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To: Admin Moderator
May I request that you edit the title of this thread? I changed it from its original title when the validation routine informed me that it was too long and I did not proofread it very well.

I would like to request the following change:

"Hugo Chavez's Opponent Plans Major Caracas Rally, Opposition Strength Growing? (Translation)

I left out the word "Rally" from the title.

Thank you.
4 posted on 10/02/2006 4:18:14 PM PDT by StJacques (Liberty is always unfinished business)
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To: StJacques

Chavez - Norvegian TV Report
http://video.google.com/videoplay?docid=-6040762455054819326&q=mohammed&hl=en


5 posted on 10/02/2006 4:18:25 PM PDT by restornu (Elevate Your Thoughts! Will I accept of an offering, saith the Lord, that is not made in my name?)
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To: Admin Moderator

Thank you very much for the edit.


6 posted on 10/02/2006 4:25:52 PM PDT by StJacques (Liberty is always unfinished business)
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To: Kitten Festival
I worry for this man's future health.

However, any ground Chavez loses, Jimmy Carter will show up to validate the election and certify Chavez the winner. Remember one group of electronic voting machines used in our country are made in Venezuela and have no paper trail and can be programed anyway deemed necessary...

7 posted on 10/02/2006 4:35:06 PM PDT by Arizona Carolyn
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To: Arizona Carolyn

I worry for the health of anyone and everyone that's anti-Chavez, and I'm not sure if it's really very smart to have these rallies with large numbers of people anywhere! This is extremely risky to do this.


8 posted on 10/02/2006 4:38:41 PM PDT by johnthebaptistmoore
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To: Arizona Carolyn

>I worry for this man's future health.

Right. There will large and violent protests enginerred against him.


9 posted on 10/02/2006 4:39:04 PM PDT by bill1952 ("All that we do is done with an eye towards something else.")
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To: StJacques
Thanks for the ping. A little background:

Rosales claims to be ahead in the polls in his home state of Zulia, Venezuela's most populous state. Zulia is in the heart of Venezuelan oil country. The oil workers don't much like Chavez or his anti-PDVSA (Venezuelan state oil company) policies.
10 posted on 10/02/2006 4:40:24 PM PDT by conservative in nyc
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To: conservative in nyc
"Rosales claims to be ahead in the polls in his home state of Zulia, Venezuela's most populous state. . . ."

And I am solidly convinced this is true. Zulia is the one Venezuelan state in which neither the state legislature nor the Governor's chair is held by Chavistas.

We actually could have something to get excited about in the near future. Saturday could change a lot of things in Venezuela.

Of course, if Arizona Carolyn is right, the big change may be that Chavez decides to take Rosales out.
11 posted on 10/02/2006 4:46:42 PM PDT by StJacques (Liberty is always unfinished business)
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To: StJacques
According to Wikipedia, Zulia has a weird political system where if the governor is from one party, the other party controls municipal government, which leads to competition to do things better (or sometimes spend more on pork barrel projects). People are moving to its largest city, Maracaibo, even from Caracas.

I'd expect a fairly large turnout in Caracas for Rosales - he claims to be leading in some outlying areas of Greater Caracas.
12 posted on 10/02/2006 4:55:59 PM PDT by conservative in nyc
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To: conservative in nyc
"I'd expect a fairly large turnout in Caracas for Rosales - he claims to be leading in some outlying areas of Greater Caracas."

Oh how I hope you are right conservative. I am going to make a point of watching Univision's Ultima Hora news Saturday evening. They have been paying a lot of attention to Rosales lately and if he gets a good turnout, it'll be front and center.

One way or another, I'll let the board know.
13 posted on 10/02/2006 5:01:34 PM PDT by StJacques (Liberty is always unfinished business)
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To: StJacques
"...the Venezuelan state of Zulia, located in the northwestern portion of the country,...

Is that area sort of like Nordeste Brasil, which is very conservative? The folks from there start businesses here.

I heard Miss Venezuela is very cute. How about a picture?

14 posted on 10/02/2006 5:08:52 PM PDT by BobS
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To: StJacques
Hey, off topic a bit, but what do you think the chances of Lula losing to Alckmin are given the corruption scandal in Brazil?

Can this Daniela Cicarelli making-love-in-the-sea video phenomenon actually affect the election by distracting Brazilians from the scandal? My impression is that it has, superceding it as "the big story".

My impression is that Alckmin would be much more forceful in fighting the Chavez aims for South America, but maybe Lula has learned that the United States really is a better friend than Chavez.

Back to the topic, thanks again for translating and posting! Rosales may not be a conservative, but he's plainly light years upon light years better than the alternative... although I wonder how much he feels like he has to cast what conservative aspects of his program it does possess in populist, even leftist terms in order to sell them to the populace.
15 posted on 10/02/2006 5:21:34 PM PDT by mjolnir ("All great change in America begins at the dinner table.")
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To: StJacques
Miss Venezuela.

Tell her to get you a beer during a football game. You might learn what a frying pan is:)

16 posted on 10/02/2006 5:27:14 PM PDT by BobS
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To: Kitten Festival
We gotta find a way to do away with Mr. Chavez without doing away with him, if you catch my drift.

I hope Mr. Rosales is getting a bit of "active" encouragement from Michael Hayden and his boys.

17 posted on 10/02/2006 5:27:42 PM PDT by HardStarboard (Hey, march some more - its helping get the wall built!)
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To: StJacques

If Chavez were to lose the election, he'd probably get Jimmy Carter to fly down to Caracas and have him certify the election as a fraud so he could retain power. How far from the truth is that possiblity?


18 posted on 10/02/2006 5:33:43 PM PDT by The South Texan (The Democrat Party and the leftist (ABCCBSNBCCNN NYLATIMES)media are a criminal enterprise!)
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To: StJacques
The latest estimate from the Economist suggests 30% of Venezeulans are living below the poverty line. This is not improving, meanwhile, Chavez is giving out handouts for political reasons and not actually helping his people.

Yes, I'd say he's dancing with death.

Regards, Ivan

19 posted on 10/02/2006 5:34:50 PM PDT by MadIvan (I aim to misbehave.)
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To: StJacques

Hugo Chavez---The South American proponent of Narcissism-Leninism.


20 posted on 10/02/2006 5:36:11 PM PDT by PJ-Comix (Join the DUmmie FUnnies PING List for the FUNNIEST Blog on the Web)
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To: StJacques
Thank you for the translation, and the translator's notes. ;>

I appreciate all updates. This election is a nail biter.

21 posted on 10/02/2006 5:49:51 PM PDT by Alia
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To: The South Texan
Unfortunately, elections in third world countries are won by who counts them. By this time Chavez has gained control of the counters. There is no way for anyone to win in Venezuela other than he. So it will take a revolution. However, I'm sure he's doing all he can to disarm the populace. Venezuela, its sorry to see you go, but you acted too late!
22 posted on 10/02/2006 5:49:54 PM PDT by raftguide
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To: StJacques
A year or so ago on another board (regarding Natalee Holloway), I met a very nice woman who was from Venezuela (there's some kind of connection between Venezuela & Aruba geographically, IIRC) and she had some choice words about him, and asked me to pray for her and to pray the country gets rid of him.
23 posted on 10/02/2006 5:50:45 PM PDT by I_Love_My_Husband
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To: StJacques
Here's a link to the same paper's own English translation
24 posted on 10/02/2006 6:02:04 PM PDT by BfloGuy (It is not from the benevolence of the butcher, the brewer, or the baker, that we can expect . . .)
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To: BobS
"I heard Miss Venezuela is very cute. How about a picture?"

LOL! Well that's a little off-topic, but on the general Latin American theme, Miss Venezuela, ( pic 1, pic 2 ), is good looking but, though I understand that many Venezuelans will be offended at my saying so, it's next door neighbor Miss Colombia, ( pic 1, pic 2 ) who is really the bomb.
25 posted on 10/02/2006 6:04:23 PM PDT by StJacques (Liberty is always unfinished business)
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To: mjolnir

I think Lula, at over 48% of the vote the last I heard, is pretty much a shoe-in, unless another corruption scandal breaks between now and election day.


26 posted on 10/02/2006 6:07:52 PM PDT by StJacques (Liberty is always unfinished business)
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To: The South Texan
"If Chavez were to lose the election, he'd probably get Jimmy Carter to fly down to Caracas and have him certify the election as a fraud so he could retain power. How far from the truth is that possiblity?"

As far as the probability of Chavez losing to Rosales, I estimate Rosales has about a 40% chance of winning right now, which is up from where I rated that probability just a couple of weeks back. Rosales is a rising star right now, but I see Chavez as pretty much able to "fix" the election right now. And I don't think even Jimmah Carter would try to step in and overturn a Chavez defeat after the way Chavez has been acting lately.
27 posted on 10/02/2006 6:11:01 PM PDT by StJacques (Liberty is always unfinished business)
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To: raftguide
"Unfortunately, elections in third world countries are won by who counts them. By this time Chavez has gained control of the counters. There is no way for anyone to win in Venezuela other than he. So it will take a revolution. However, I'm sure he's doing all he can to disarm the populace. Venezuela, its sorry to see you go, but you acted too late!"

Actually, Chavez doesn't have complete control over the vote counters, because he conducts the charade of allowing international observers in to certify his "victory." What he does control are the voter rolls, which is a very big problem for Rosales to overcome. I don't have the link handy, but I have read elsewhere that there is good evidence that there are perhaps as many as 200,000 people registered under different names in separate precincts. And I believe that the total number of votes cast will be something in the 6 to 7 million range (that's a guess). That's the fraud problem.
28 posted on 10/02/2006 6:15:25 PM PDT by StJacques (Liberty is always unfinished business)
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To: BfloGuy; All

On the English translation link BfloGuy has offered his post #24 above, and thank you for that BfloGuy, for those of you who read the notes to the translation, in my note #4 there is a link to the Rosales statement of opposition to Chavez pursuing ideological goals in Venezuelan foreign policy which is a Spanish language article. BfloGuy has graciously given us a link to the English version.


29 posted on 10/02/2006 6:19:53 PM PDT by StJacques (Liberty is always unfinished business)
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To: StJacques

Miss Colombia is hot! Miss Venezuela might have words with her:)

30 posted on 10/02/2006 6:28:52 PM PDT by BobS
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To: BobS
Easy now Bob. The tensions between Colombia and Venezuela are marked. We don't want to start a war!

LOL!
31 posted on 10/02/2006 6:33:17 PM PDT by StJacques (Liberty is always unfinished business)
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To: StJacques; All

Chávez, Stiglitz and other Populists

By Gustavo Coronel

October 3, 2006








Latin America has been long on populist political leaders and short on statesmen. Peron, Eva, Menem in Argentina; Vargas and Color de Mello in Brazil; Velasco Ibarra and Bucaram in Ecuador; Velasco Alvarado, Fujimori and Alan Garcia in Peru, Carlos Andrés Pérez and Hugo Chávez in Venezuela are some of the many examples of populism in Latin American politics. Betancourt in Venezuela, Lleras Camargo in Colombia, Cardoso in Brazil are some of the few examples of statesmanship. During the last 100 years of Latin American history we can see how politics have prevailed over policies. The reason is that politics is short-term oriented while policy formulation and execution are long-term. Populist leaders live in the present and immediate future while statesmen prefer the long-term view. Populists are sprinters while statesmen are marathoners. Most populists have no patience or stamina to run beyond the "400 meters." This explains their preference for promises. Populists will always talk about the things they will do, while statesmen prefer to talk about the things they have done. While populists share a perverse vision of personal and absolute power, statesmen share the power of a vision that has much more to do with the improvement of their societies than with attempts to consolidate personal power. In the terminology of emotional intelligence populists are essentially dissonant leaders. They do not govern, they rule. As such their political legacy tends to be one of hate, resentment and fear.



A theoretical model by Dornbusch and Edwards (The Macroeconomics of Populism in Latin America, Univ. of Chicago Press, 1990), is useful to understand the way populist leaders work. Populists, the model stipulates, are disdainful of economic constraints. They are free spenders. Their main theme is often wealth redistribution and they rarely know how to create new wealth. This is why they restrict themselves to taking money from those who have it, many of whom have earned it through hard work, in order to give handouts to those who do not have it. In this manner everybody becomes equally poor.



Modern populists connect directly to the masses, commonly bypassing organized political parties and labor unions. They promise the masses that they will be getting the money the rich have taken away from them. In talking to the masses they often use the ways of folklore. Bucaram danced salsa, Chávez sings off-key and recites tacky poetry, Fujimori wore native headwear. The populist leader chooses an enemy, often the members of the rural and industrial elites and systematically browbeats them, sowing social and racial hate among the population. Populists decide on wage increases by executive decree and combine them with price and exchange controls, in order to give the masses a temporary illusion of prosperity.



For populist leaders like Chávez "to be rich is evil," the "poor are good, the rich are bad." I recently heard a populist leader speaking in Washington, Vice President Garcia Liniera of Bolivia. He talked to the audience about building a strong Bolivian State, which could use its economic surplus to inject it into the communities, so that they could build what he called a new "Andean Capitalism," a combination of big industry with small, family size enterprises. It made for an entertaining talk but he failed to tell us how could Bolivia generate economic surplus by ostracizing the private sector. The latest news from Bolivia indicates that Garcia Liniera's dreams are in for a rude awakening. The nationalization of the hydrocarbons industry is encountering many financial, political and technical problems and workers are back to road blocking. The problem with populism is that it only works in the very short-term and eventually fails to conform to social realities.




The impact of Hugo Chávez in Venezuela and abroad



Hugo Chávez is a textbook example of neopopulism. He has made a direct connection with the masses through television. He has become a very authoritarian leader and what he calls "Participatory Democracy" only means participarle al pueblo, telling the masses after the fact what he has decided to do. Although he is driven by megalomania, just as the other populist leaders of the region, there are two factors that separate Chávez from other populist Latin American leaders: one, he has a pocket full of money and, two, he is obsessed with destroying "the empire," as he calls the United States. These two factors have driven him beyond Venezuelan borders, something that not even Juan Peron tried to do. In doing this Chávez has committed all the financial resources of Venezuela to structure a global anti-U.S. alliance. This is forcing him to neglect the domestic scene. He now spends most of his time and Venezuelan money abroad, buying loyalties from small countries by giving them handouts (Bolivia, the Caribbean States) or from big countries by promising them Venezuelan oil (China) or buying from them billions of dollars in arms and weapons systems (Belarus, Russia and Spain). His megalomania has gone global and he is now clearly aligned with the most dictatorial regimes of the World: Zimbabwe, Iran, North Korea, Syria, Libya, Belarus, Cuba and with narcoterrorist and/or militant terrorist organizations such as FARC in Colombia and Hezbollah in Lebanon.



In spite of this dismal performance some international observers tend to give Hugo Chávez credit he does not deserve by over estimating the effectiveness of his ill-planned and corrupt social programs. For example, when Chávez came to power in 1998 Venezuela already had a 94% literacy rate. But he claims to have eliminated illiteracy from the country, teaching "1.5 million Venezuelans to read and write in 18 months." This comes out to about two Venezuelans per minute, day in and day out. Understandably the United Nations has refused to validate this claim. The Barrio Adentro mission, designed to give medical services to the poor in the barrios is a valid concept (though poorly executed) that cannot be used to replace a structural, long-term health policy. While the Cuban medical and paramedical staff prescribe aspirin in the barrios, the Venezuelan hospitals lack the most essential equipment and facilities, a situation that has caused many deaths. I disagree with those observers who say that Chávez's "missions" have come to solve problems that the traditional Venezuelan political parties cared very little about. Statistics reveal that many of the previous democratic Venezuelan governments in the period 1958 to 1980 paid more attention to structural health policies than to programs designed for political effect. Chávez's missions give poor Venezuelans an illusion of being tended to, but the structural solutions to health and education are lacking. This is the very essence of populism.



The same considerations apply to the use of Venezuelan oil as a political tool. By giving oil for free to Cuba and subsidizing oil supplies to Bolivia and the Caribbean countries Hugo Chávez is illegally disposing of US$2 to $3 billion per year in money that belongs to the Venezuelan people, without getting very much in return, except vague and temporary promises of political loyalty. His initiatives of Petroamerica, Petrosur and Petroandina with the possible exception of Petrocaribe, have not progressed beyond the conceptual stage. They represent empty promises, just as his idea of a US$25 billion gas pipeline from Venezuela to Argentina represents an irresponsible and typically populist maneuver that has already crumbled down.



Chávez's impact on Venezuelan or on the Latin American political scene could be short lived. I believe Chávez's regime represents an involution that will leave Venezuela in physical and spiritual ruin for two generations. His long-term hemispheric and global impact will probably be of similar magnitude to that of second category populist leaders and dictators such as Eva Peron or Robert Mugabe, never on the level of Fidel Castro. He reminds me, in his paradoxical combination of global messianic ambitions and small town, parochial manners, of the Mahdi who captured Khartoum and killed General "Chinese" Gordon in the late 19th century.



Hugo Chávez has conducted during the last eight years the most corrupt and one of the most inefficient governments in Venezuelan history. After receiving close to US$200 billion in oil income and doubling Venezuela's national debt, he has somehow managed to increase poverty and to deeply divide Venezuela's society, calling on racism and class struggle as strategic allies to promote hate and resentment. International reports such as Transparency International's Corruption Perceptions Index (CPI) and other reports, the United Nations Human Development Index, The Global Competitiveness Report 2006-2007 of the World Economic Forum, The Heritage Foundation's 2006 Index of Economic Freedom, and The Fraser Institute's Economic Freedom of The World: 2006 Annual Report place Chávez's Venezuela close to the bottom of the ladder, much closer to Africa than to Latin America in social and economic development. Chávez represents the classical Dissonant Leader, as defined by Daniel Goleman and collaborators in their book Primal Leadership: Learning to Lead with Emotional Intelligence (Harvard Business School Press, 2004). As such, he will leave behind a tragic trail of misery and ignorance.





Stiglitz and his distorted views on Populism



Populism in Latin America, including the example set by Chávez, has received an unexpected boost from Nobel Prize winner Joseph Stiglitz. This distinguished economist started to protest against the strategic errors of The World Bank and the International Monetary Fund (IMF) only after severing his working connection with The World Bank. He has become a main critic of the manner these organizations behave. Many of his arguments are well taken but he has also developed a fondness for Latin American populism, which he has defined as "not a bad thing." He has redefined populism as "...worrying about how the bottom two-thirds of the population fares." According to his definition, he claims Venezuela under Chávez is good because: "two-thirds of Venezuelans were living in poverty under the old system."



His opinions should be challenged. In the first place his redefinition of populism is incorrect. Populism, in its accepted definition, involves a pretense of caring about the poor in order to consolidate personal political power. It has to do with false promises, with throwing money around to make believe that the poor are being helped. A person like Stiglitz should know that Chávez has been playing such a game of deception. He should know that the Venezuelan population under Chávez is not better off but poorer, more ignorant, more dependent on the welfare state and more at the mercy of corrupt bureaucrats and common criminals. A first rate economist like Stiglitz cannot afford to be so easily duped as, say, Congressman Bill Delahunt. He adds another pearl of wisdom in the interview above mentioned: "If you look at Venezuela's example, it is that by bargaining tough and hard with the oil companies you can get a better deal." What Chávez has been doing with the foreign oil companies cannot be defined as tough and hard bargaining but as total disdain for the rights of others, whoever they might be. Gaining concessions through negotiations is one thing, imposing unilateral decisions is another. Chávez's example has been followed by Evo Morales in Bolivia, who has decided to treat foreign oil companies as criminals not to be trusted. The results of this unwise strategy are evident: Bolivia is having great political and economic problems at the moment. It seems evident that Sitglitz believes that if The World Bank and the IMF have left much to be desired in the manner they have behaved toward nations, this automatically means that irresponsible political leaders like Chávez are doing the right thing. This reasoning seems unworthy of a Nobel Prize winner.





Conclusion



Latin American democracy is very much alive. It has made significant progress in the hemisphere and remains a totally valid concept. In Brazil, Chile, Colombia, Panama, Central America, Uruguay, Peru, Mexico and, yes, even in Bolivia, democracy has so far prevailed. To those who despair about the uneven democratic development taking place in our region I say: Democracy is an ideal. The fact that most countries have not reached this ideal is no reason to invalidate the concept. It would be like eliminating marriage as a valid institution because of the marital records of the Hollywood crowd.



http://venezuelatoday.net/


32 posted on 10/02/2006 6:39:16 PM PDT by Founding Father (The Pedophile moHAMmudd (PBUH---Pigshit be upon him))
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To: StJacques; All

Five points on Brazil's first round
Brazil's presidential election is going to a second round. First some results.

Lula da Silva: 48.61%
Alckmin: 41.64%
Helena: 6.85%
Blank or Null votes: 8.42%

1. More than corruption. It's easy for the global media to pick up one campaign theme and run with it, but there were many domestic political and economic issues at play. Crime is a major issue that was barely discussed in the media (both candidates had their faults). Brazil's economy is growing, but nowhere near the pace it needs to. The Real has gained vis-a-vis the dollar, helping Brazil's economy overall but hurting some key sectors that probably cost Lula votes. One side accuses Lula of not moving fast enough on social programs (land redistribution, Bolsa Familia); the other side says he has failed to manage economic restructuring (pension reform, debt restructuring). There were plenty of issues that cost Lula votes in the first round.

2. Ok, yes, corruption too. The scandals were a continuous negative thread hanging over the Lula campaign. When voters are told day after day that the president's party is corrupt, it will hurt approval ratings.

3. The undecideds broke for Alckmin. The real shock of this election was that nearly all the undecided voters broke for Alckmin. He was regularly polling around 30% before the election and the number of undecided voters ranged from 10-15%. The movement of the undecideds to the opposition camp was probably caused by the most recent corruption scandal, but it should be seen as a major victory for Alckmin.

4. Alckmin with momentum. In one strong second place showing, Alckmin has changed his image from lackluster challenger to potential giant slayer. He has a long way to go, but there should be no doubt that he has the momentum.

5. Lula is still the favorite. In spite of showing poorly in the first round, President Lula da Silva is still the favorite in the second round. His campaign's first task will be doing something to shake up the race and disrupt Alckmin's momentum. Their second task should focus on getting 55-60% of the vote in the next round so that Lula can start his second term strongly.

http://bloggingsbyboz.blogspot.com/


33 posted on 10/02/2006 6:43:23 PM PDT by Founding Father (The Pedophile moHAMmudd (PBUH---Pigshit be upon him))
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To: StJacques
Here is another one of Miss Venezuela:

Which one is sneakier with those cute brown eyes?:)

34 posted on 10/02/2006 6:48:20 PM PDT by BobS
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To: StJacques

It doesn't matter. Venezuela is a socialist (Communist) dictatorship. Hugo's thugs will count the votes...Hugo will win.


35 posted on 10/02/2006 6:53:32 PM PDT by Redleg Duke (¡Salga de los Estados Unidos de América, invasor!)
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To: Redleg Duke
"Hugo's thugs will count the votes...Hugo will win."

See my #28 above. Chavez's mechanism of fraud is control over the election rolls.
36 posted on 10/02/2006 7:06:41 PM PDT by StJacques (Liberty is always unfinished business)
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To: Founding Father; Kitten Festival
Founding Father and Kitten Festival, I want to commend the both of you for bringing the tone of discussion on Hugo Chavez as it exists in the blogosphere into these threads. I actually have found myself a little ashamed that I have not been keeping up. Most of my work has been digging through the news sites.

You're both doing an excellent job and I hope you continue to present this information in these threads as we move forward. I find it all very enlightening.
37 posted on 10/02/2006 7:15:04 PM PDT by StJacques (Liberty is always unfinished business)
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To: StJacques

Thanks for your reply. I never cease to be amazed at how much more knowledge I gain by being a member of FR.


38 posted on 10/02/2006 7:48:06 PM PDT by raftguide
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To: raftguide
Those are kind words raftguide, thank you.

And may I say that there are some really sharp Freepers hanging around these Chavez threads. Keep your eye on 'em and you'll learn quite a bit. I'm only recently introduced to many of them and I must say that the past couple of months have been an eye-opener for me.
39 posted on 10/02/2006 8:02:22 PM PDT by StJacques (Liberty is always unfinished business)
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To: StJacques

Let's pray I'm wrong.


40 posted on 10/02/2006 8:19:43 PM PDT by Arizona Carolyn
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To: The South Texan

Not far at all. They make the voting machines -- the same one's we have that don't use a paper trail -- and can program them so no one knows what the data they turn out will be but the programer. I've heard more than one supposition Chavez lost the recall and Carter helped certify he'd won.


41 posted on 10/02/2006 8:21:53 PM PDT by Arizona Carolyn
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To: StJacques
"Easy now Bob. The tensions between Colombia and Venezuela are marked. We don't want to start a war!"

Let the women argue. Men can stand around and place bets and have a good time watching them do what comes naturally between women:):) And laugh the war off!

42 posted on 10/02/2006 8:28:14 PM PDT by BobS
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To: Arizona Carolyn
"Let's pray I'm wrong."

Yes; let us pray. I'll bet Rosales is praying too. I can hear him now:

Padre nuestro que estás en el Cielo
santificado sea tu nombre
venga a nosotros tu Reino
hágase tu voluntad en la Tierra como en el Cielo
danos hoy nuestro pan de cada dia
y perdona nuestras ofensas
como también nosotros perdonamos a los que nos ofenden
no nos dejes caer en tentación
y líbranos del mal
Amén


43 posted on 10/02/2006 8:30:43 PM PDT by StJacques (Liberty is always unfinished business)
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To: BobS
"Let the women argue...."

I'm going to tell you a true story.

I spent a year in Colombia, living as I did in its "Department" (state) of Caldas, having an apartment in the city of Manizales and spending a lot more of my time in the immediate vicinity.

I visited Bogota about three times and on one occasion I was walking with a friend of mine and we came upon a fight in the street in front of a local cafe between two men. We couldn't tell what the fight was about and, soon after we came on the scene, three policemen showed up. We stood and watched while they began to question the two men fighting and the bystanders.

It turns out that the two men got into an argument over two participants in the upcoming Miss Colombia pageant. One of the men was from the Colombian Department of Bucaramanga and another was from the Department of Antioquia. And a side note here, Antioquian women are generally considered the finest in Colombia and their men are always ready to tell you about it, yes; they have an attitude, and for good reason I might add! LOL! But one of the men said something derogatory about the beauty queen representing the other's home turf and, you guessed it, they had to take it out into the street.

What was really hilarious about the whole scene was that when the policeman who led the interrogations got the story, he immediately insisted that it was Miss Bogota who was finer than either Miss Bucaramanga or Miss Antioquia. And he must have said something I didn't hear because immediately both of the men who had been fighting began to resist being restrained, wanting to go after the policeman who was talking up Miss Bogota. The bystanders generally favored Miss Bogota and began shouting their feelings as such at both men and giving the policeman some encouragement to argue Miss Bogota's case. But then some other passers-by heard what was going on, and it turns out that they were from Antioquia and decided they had to come to the assistance of the man who stood up for their beauty queen. A much larger scuffle ensued in which the newly-arrived passers-by were getting into it with the local Bogotanos and there just were not enough policemen on hand to keep things quiet. At which point the original policeman who conducted the interrogations pulled out his pistol and pointed it straight up in the air, and everything quieted down. But the local Bogotanos still insisted that the argument had been settled in their favor as they dispersed.

It's not the women you have to worry about Bob. It's the men.

I promise you, this is a true story.
44 posted on 10/02/2006 8:47:01 PM PDT by StJacques (Liberty is always unfinished business)
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To: StJacques

Latin American Defense Ministers Meet Amid concerns Over Venezuela's Arms Buildup - by Julie Watson


http://www.hacer.org/current/LATAM189.php


45 posted on 10/03/2006 6:43:03 AM PDT by Shuttle Shucker
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To: StJacques
I like news from South America because I lived in Spain on the economy while I was in tha AF a while back. Most of my German relatives moved there because of taxes and before the EU came to be, to be safe. There are titties running loose all over the Costa del Sol. You can always spot American ones with the zebra stripe:)

Nice, intelligent women as you have anywhere. I just meet people from SA. The cultures are as different between Spain, Portugal and South America as England is to the U.S.

IMHO, women from Brasil are similar to Spanish women, because I am with one. Smart, quiet and behaves like a lady. Very cute too:) And it only took the State Dept. 3 months to give her a work attachment to her Visa so she can be a critical care nurse in a coronary unit. And the stupid Immigration Dept. 6 more months to send her a green card. Passed the NCLEX exam last year before this. She wants to become a citizen. Half of her family is here and own businesses.

SO, is a job that pays $75K one that Americans are too lazy to train for? There is a nurse shortage here. It's the same science in all languages. Personally, I would like cuties with accents lurking around if I need a hospital bed:):):)

46 posted on 10/03/2006 2:31:30 PM PDT by BobS
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To: BobS
"Personally, I would like cuties with accents lurking around if I need a hospital bed"

Well, I'll have to save revelations of my "nurse fantasies" for another thread. LOL! :>)
47 posted on 10/03/2006 3:18:37 PM PDT by StJacques (Liberty is always unfinished business)
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To: StJacques
"Well, I'll have to save revelations of my "nurse fantasies" for another thread. LOL! :>)"

Well, I went into a hospital for a physical a few years ago. There is no placque in my heart or arteries because I saw the ultrasound in action. No cholesterol in my blood. Ran the treadmill nude with Air Jordans and continued after a nurse stepped on it while it was fast and a hook slammed into my head. Nuclear medicine also. MRI also. Blood and disease screen. The result was that my left arm pulled a few tendons right above my heart. I learned this on the 3rd day. West Hills is a very nice hospital with Fox News if you want to lay around. I didn't. Talk up the nurses and word eventually gets to the surgeon who doesn't want guys laying around in bed picking up his nurses. That's what got me released by 1 PM on the 3rd day.

My surgeon said to stop being lazy. I'm not fat. So I am with a Brizilian nurse.

That costs $14K to find out I will be horny for 40 more years!

48 posted on 10/03/2006 4:01:02 PM PDT by BobS
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To: BobS

LOL! I'm not sure I wanted to know all of that but it was funny.


49 posted on 10/03/2006 5:03:06 PM PDT by StJacques (Liberty is always unfinished business)
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To: StJacques

Evidently the Venezuelan poor haven't progressed under Chavez:

http://www.nypost.com/seven/10032006/news/columnists/pain_in_slums_of_chavez_columnists_douglas_montero.htm


50 posted on 10/04/2006 6:12:45 AM PDT by Shuttle Shucker
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