Skip to comments.Venezuela’s Slow Bern:Demise of the Maduro regime looks like prolonged agony for the American Left
Posted on 03/01/2019 9:17:10 AM PST by billorites
The mess in Venezuela is getting worse, but while that country is literally starving to death under the yoke of an incompetent, corrupt and malignant socialist dictatorship the hopes of a Ukrainian-style peaceful revolution or bloodless coup that would end the Nicolas Maduro regime are dimming.
That was the most apparent conclusion following last weeks attempts by the U.S.-recognized interim president Juan Guaido to ship desperately-needed food and medicine into the country. The government fired on aid workers at Venezuelas borders both with Colombia and Brazil, setting trucks laden with humanitarian aid ablaze and kicking off civil unrest everywhere.
Conditions are so bad in Venezuela that one citizen in 10 has fled, starvation is rampant, the economy has all but collapsed, violent demonstrations occur daily, and government repression has reached the levels of the old Warsaw Pact nations during the Cold War. When Guaido and his allies sought to alleviate some of the suffering by shipping aid in from Brazil and Colombia, with American help, and the regime resorted to violence in stopping that aid with Maduro calling it a Trojan horse to bring revolution with it, it didnt just signal how low the dictator will go.
Whats worse is that Venezuelas military and security apparatus was willing to fire on their own people to keep food and medicine from going to the sick and starving. With conditions that bad, youd expect the regime to crack. And while there were a number of desertions by low-level military personnel amid the humanitarian aid attempts, on the whole Maduro was able to hold the line.
Why? Probably because as those who have criticized Maduro and Hugo Chavez, his predecessor who built Venezuelas socialist tyranny with the moral support of the American Left, have noted for 20 years, this is not simply a Venezuelan socialist dictatorship. Maduros regime is more of an occupying force, shot through as it is with Cuban military and intelligence operatives forming a police state. High-level military officials cant desert, because they have too much to lose their property will be stolen, they and their families will be tortured, imprisoned, and killed, and so on. And the Cubans policing the regime have nowhere to go; Havana doesnt have jobs for them when theyre sent home by whatever would succeed the Maduro government.
Not to mention the billions of dollars Vladimir Putin and the Russians have spent propping up the Maduro regime, an investment which will keep Maduros inner circle loyal for the time being.
Which means this nightmare appears to have a lot longer fuse than had been hoped, and Guaido will have to skulk around as head of a government-in-exile in Bogota and Brasilia and Asuncion and other locales in an effort to build support for efforts at regime change. Guaido is promising to return home to Venezuela in the coming days, though if he does hell surely be arrested or worse.
And things will continue to decline in Venezuela, where the public mention of Maduros name increasingly engenders vociferous exhortations to perform feats of anatomic impossibility.
Ultimately this is likely to result as most regime changes in Latin America do in wholesale slaughter and with both sides bled white. There is little history of peaceful revolution in that part of the world, and the status quo in Caracas isnt conducive to an exception.
Before it comes to Armageddon in Venezuela, though, there will likely be rather pronounced suffering of another sort. That being the pain of the American Left, whose coddling and moral support of the Chavez-Maduro tyranny in Venezuela (not to mention the parroting of its propaganda, particularly of the anti-American sort) is beginning to come home to them in ways they dont like.
Take Bernie Sanders, for example, who has long held up Venezuela as a model for what he thinks America ought to look like. Sanders, by far the most overrated politician in modern American history and a man whose never-ending free ride in the mainstream media is an item of wonderment, is nevertheless beset by some of those unfortunate statements. Last week Sanders was forced to criticize the Maduro regimes stopping those aid trucks and upbraid its use of violence, a stance which got him in trouble both with many of his hard-core socialist supporters, who accused him of getting in bed with Elliott Abrams and John Bolton for having criticized Maduro, and with more moderate elements of the Democrat Party who went ballistic when, on an appearance with Univisions Jorge Ramos, Sanders refused to call Maduro a dictator.
That latter mistake, which Sanders repeated Monday on an appearance on CNN, has the failed carpenter and revolutionary poet under attack from several quarters. New Jersey Senator Bob Menendez let him have it the next night on the same network. Dictatorship is dictatorship whether from the right or left, Menendez said. Dictatorship oppresses their people. Im really surprised that Sen. Sanders could not at least call him a dictator. And Congresswoman Donna Shalala, a former Clinton Administration official and president of the University of Miami, scorched him on Twitter:
Ill make it clear, @SenSandersdoes not reflect the majority of the Democratic Party and our support for Venezuelas interim president @jguaidoand the Venezuelan people. Maduro is a dictator and must go.
Sanders isnt alone in having these problems, as Democrats are falling over themselves to escape connections with the Maduro regime. Kamala Harris, perhaps his chief rival for the Democrat nomination, put out a pair of tweets attempting to offer leadership on the Venezuela issue which couldnt have fallen more flat. Whats happening in Venezuela is a crisis, the first onesaid. The people who have fled Maduros dictatorial regime deserve safety and protection. As President, I would immediately extend TPS status to Venezuelans. Its the right thing to do. America must show moral leadership in this hemisphere.
And in the second, Harris decided to play schoolmarm. The U.S. must immediately condemn Maduros violence against his own people, she hectored. There is no excuse for this. The Venezuelan military and security forces must demonstrate restraint. Venezuelans deserve a free and fair election and a peaceful transition of power.
Harris was met by a torrent of catcalls, largely from Venezuelans who have zero interest in refugee status in America but rather would like to save their own country from socialist tyranny. They find little in her statements likely to aid in that cause.
As pressure on the regime in Caracas grows, and as the suffering in Venezuela captures more and more of the worlds attention there are only so many media orgies one might concoct with the Michael Cohens of the world to distract the public, after all this political problem is only going to get worse.
So far, President Trump has played it fairly smart in Venezuela. He delivered a brilliant speech in Miami last week castigating Maduro as a thug and a dictator, pointedly referencing the Cuban role in that tyrannical regime and reiterating his opposition and the American revulsion to socialism as a governing philosophy. Trump is clearly supporting Guaidos efforts at bringing humanitarian aid into the country, and its likely that support will become more robust over time.
Elements on the anti-American Left here and in other countries are parroting Maduros line that the humanitarian aid is a Trojan Horse to conceal weapons shipments to anti-regime forces in Venezuela, though so far there is little evidence to support such allegations and if in fact theyre true, they only illuminate the fact the regime disarmed the populace several years ago, providing an example of exactly why a free people needs a Second Amendment.
The worst thing Trump could do, politically, is likely the best thing he could to do alleviate the suffering of the people of Venezuela as quickly as possible namely, to send in the Marines and take out Maduros government. There is little evidence thats coming, particularly since the U.S. would never act alone in that regard and neither the Colombians or Brazilians, who would have to join in, appear interested. That means Venezuelans will have to overthrow the regime, something they wont have the brawn to do without armaments or conditions getting considerably worse.
Which means a lot of suffering is in the offing both for the beleaguered people of Venezuela, who are learning the lesson that while one may vote oneself into socialism one has to shoot oneself out of it, and for the American Left, who will spend the next months and years explaining how Venezuela isnt real socialism and shifting to Bolivia as the new socialist Wakanda (which wont age well) while lecturing us how while theyve supported all the same policies Chavez and Maduro have foisted on their people, the results of those policies here would be Totally Different You Guys.
For the former, one cant offer enough sympathy and goodwill. Its impossible to feel differently upon seeing the images of what socialism has done in Venezuela.
But for the latter, that sympathy is hard to generate. The silver lining to the trouble in Venezuela is the entertainment the American Lefts squirming will surely occasion.
I for one am loving every second of the left’s pain and agony over the train wreck that is Venezuela.
It’s a horror for the people of VZ but the Republicans need to pound relentlessly the example of VZ. I know, the only thing they can not do. To repeat something, lest someone think they are dog whistling or being racist towards turnips.
Meanwhile, the left and the leftist media will repeat something 3,700 times if they see it as fulfilling their mission. And then repeat it some more, bring out a previously unknown and unseen “expert” to repeat the same line of crap their previous 47 guests have already repeated 3,699 times.
There is one thing the Republicans should do, and it’s so painfully obvious. They need to hire a firm that will get them together and train them to mouth what should be pre-set responses to leftist drivel. They need to have spiritual retreats at the nearest Ritz-Carlton where they learn how to say THE SAME DAMN THING OVER AND OVER.
Maduro will eventually be gone, but the country will remain socialist.
The majority supports that. They just believe that Maduro is the wrong guy to run it. People who hold a different view have largely fled the country.
Socialism kills people. Democrats want socialism in America
Yep, streets ablaze tight in the middle of a Presidential election with one side saying Venezuela is paradise an the other saying socialism is failed policy - Americans will have to believe their own eyes.
Venezuela serves as a great visual for what the left wants to do to US.
> incompetent, corrupt and malignant socialist dictatorship
This type of statement is dangerous. It implies that there is another type of “socialist dictatorship”. It makes Bernie and AOC supporters say “yeah it’s bad, but they just aren’t doing it right”.
They are amazingly good at ignoring these stories.
If ever there were a place that “socialism” might work it would be a resource rich country like this. You only had to nationalize one industry, and then run it competently, and there would have been quite a bit of wealth to redistribute.
But they are thieves and incompetent managers and they were utterly incapable of running an oil company, so now they flee in the night with the family silver.
I am sorry to see the suffering the Venezuelan people are enduring.
They voted for it. Sometimes the purpose of your life is to serve as a warning to others.
I’m waiting for the Cuban’s in VZ to start getting whacked.
Sorry, but I dont think the left views Vz as their problem
First off, to admit it as a failing of their idealogy,
Requires them to be honest and open to another
Opinion. Where has the left shown that, ever.
If they notice Vz at all, they would say its not
The same here, there is no comparison
More likely they would not answer the question
As they are too focused on seizing power
The mess in Venezuela is getting worse, but while that country is literally starving to death under the yoke of an incompetent, corrupt and malignant socialist dictatorship the hopes of a Ukrainian-style peaceful revolution or bloodless coup that would end the Nicolas Maduro regime are dimming... this is not simply a Venezuelan socialist dictatorship. Maduro's regime is more of an occupying force, shot through as it is with Cuban military and intelligence operatives forming a police state. High-level military officials can't desert, because they have too much to lose -- their property will be stolen, they and their families will be tortured, imprisoned, and killed, and so on. And the Cubans policing the regime have nowhere to go; Havana doesn't have jobs for them when they're sent home by whatever would succeed the Maduro government. Not to mention the billions of dollars Vladimir Putin and the Russians have spent propping up the Maduro regime... the American Left, whose coddling and moral support of the Chavez-Maduro tyranny in Venezuela (not to mention the parroting of its propaganda, particularly of the anti-American sort)... Bernie Sanders, for example, who has long held up Venezuela as a model for what he thinks America ought to look like. Sanders, by far the most overrated politician in modern American history and a man whose never-ending free ride in the mainstream media is an item of wonderment... was forced to criticize the Maduro regime's stopping those aid trucks and upbraid its use of violence, a stance which got him in trouble both with many of his hard-core socialist supporters, who accused him of getting in bed with Elliott Abrams and John Bolton for having criticized Maduro, and with more moderate elements of the Democrat Party who went ballistic when, on an appearance with Univision's Jorge Ramos, Sanders refused to call Maduro a dictator... New Jersey Senator Bob Menendez let him have it the next night on the same network... Congresswoman Donna Shalala, a former Clinton Administration official and president of the University of Miami, scorched him on Twitter... Kamala Harris, perhaps his chief rival for the Democrat nomination, put out a pair of tweets attempting to offer "leadership" on the Venezuela issue which couldn't have fallen more flat... Harris was met by a torrent of catcalls, largely from Venezuelans who have zero interest in refugee status in America but rather would like to save their own country from socialist tyranny. They find little in her statements likely to aid in that cause.
All the self-described geniuses of the left (along with the NeverTrumpers) continue to get their asses paddled by President Trump, whom they regard as Dobie Gillis. Thanks billorites.
A good tagger.
Calling Sean Penn. Has anyone seen Sean Penn?
“They voted for it.”
No, they didn’t.
Yeah, I copied that one down too. The mania on the Left for disarming their own opponents is largely due to this. It is, after all, the first action and responsibility of totalitarian government to ensure that it never loses power.
The resurgence in popularity of the socialist vision is due in no small part to the paucity of counter-examples, which was not the case during the Cold War. Ignore Cuba, ignore Venezuela, misrepresent Scandinavian countries as socialist, lie, lie... Venezuela is becoming more difficult but not impossible to ignore simply because people really are suffering on a scale the news cameras cannot turn away from, and globalist news companies don't have a monopoly on the narrative anymore due to social media. The Left will correct all of that at first opportunity, never fear.
They voted for the mambo chimp and his successor. Maduro clearly cheated in the last election, but Venezuelans did vote to go down the failed road of socialism.
9 out of 10 voters know zero about venezuela, much less connect the mess there to socialism or Democrats
1 out of ten are split 50/50 between conservatives who have a clue and liberals who disconnect Venezualan tyranny with the glories of Progressive socialism (or blame the US for the turmoil there)
Venezuala is not a winning issue for our side.
True Indeed. Imagine an honest journalist here in America actually saying and understanding this.
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