Jude Collins

Friday, 5 October 2012

Let's hope the president wins - for democracy's sake

So - who do you fancy for the American election -  the president or the challenger? Because the result will have repercussions that will certainly affect the electorate but also the world in general. Yes indeed - on Sunday the Venezualan people will make a momentous decision. 

Hugo Chavez, if you’ve been following the American media, is a dictator and very bad for his country. That’s why they’re hoping (and working) for his defeat on Sunday. A dictator, a buffoon, a bad ‘un.

But then you check what’s been happening in Venezuela over the period of his presidency. In 2004, the Venezuelan government took over the oil industry. Poverty in the country has been cut in half. Millions who didn’t have access to health care now have it; college enrollment has doubled and much of it is free. And this election is going to be a lot fairer than the  election that’ll be held next month in the US.  In the United States, some 90 million people won’t vote. In Venezuela, they’ve  somewhere around 97% of the population on the voting register. And remember those ‘hanging chads’ or whatever it was in Florida, that got Bush in before Al Gore? That kind of thing is made impossible in Venezuela. Former US president Jimmy Carter, who got a Nobel prize for his work in monitoring elections world-wide was asked about Venezuela’s coming election:  “ As a matter of fact, of the 92 elections that we've monitored, I would say that the election process in Venezuela is the best in the world."

So why do the US media give the nasty picture of Chavez that they do? Why don’t admit that Chavez is part of a left-of-centre development throughout many countries in South America - why don’t they welcome this?

Simple. Chavez and other South American leaders have stopped doing what the US State Department want them to do and are doing what they believe is good for their people. That’s why if Chavez is re-elected on Sunday, the US media will respond with a hurricane of stories about Chavez and the election, all of them negative. 

And that’s why a victory by Chavez on Sunday is a consummation devoutly to be wished. 


  1. Jude. The women of Venezuela will be in two minds on how to vote. On the one hand they may not like that abortions are illegal under Chavez, but on the other hand they may approve of his recognition of housework as legitimate labour deserving financial reward.
    There are questions too about human rights abuse under Chavez, which might have beeb worth mentioning?
    But as long as he keeps thumbing his nose at the US that is all that matters

    1. I'm not saying its ok for Venezuela to do it if America does it but its a bit hypocritical not to mention the human rights abuses in "democratic" America e.g. Guantamamo Bay detention centre, capital punishment etc.


    2. Anon 20:11
      I'm no particular fan of the US, but as the piece was about the Venezuelan election I see no need to bring Guantanamo into it.
      It is Jude who highlights the achievements of Chavez without mentioning any of the failings, including a dubious human rights record.

  2. I think you need to extrapolate one step further than the State Department.

    The USA is not run for the benefit of its people, the country is run by big business for wealthy individuals.

    Own a defence Company? Heres a war
    Own a Pharma Company? Convince the poor they dont need a health care system
    Own a security firm? Heres the TSA and all the security theatre.

    Guess what, those individuals who dictate policy are not impressed at Chavez cutting off their easy money supply.

    Its another country which has oil... Another Iran, Iraq etc.

    I fear for Ireland now they've discovered oil and gas.