Chavez calls for united socialist party in Venezuela

Chávez said that they were beginning a new phase of the process and warned that the “deepening of the revolution is going to sharpen the contradictions,” both on a national and international level. For this reason he explained the urgency of a strong party, “because we are not going to stop the revolution,” he explained.

Red Squirrel’s Lair has more.

  • Joe Hartley

    And this kind of monolithic apparatus is supposed to be a good thing in a country which has no indpendent courts and, thanks to the Congres which makes the Dems in America look positively heroic by comparison, has voted itself out of existence and allowed the president to make laws by fiat?

  • Where exactly did you get the ridiculous idea that the country has no independent courts? Some attention whoring opposition blog?

    Take a look at Oil War’s report:

    I do have to confess, there are times when I think it would be better if Chavez really did exercise control over everything. It could hardly be worse than having the current joke of a Supreme Court issuing some, let us say for lack of a better term, breathtaking rulings.

    Of course, the most (in)famous such ruling was back in 2002 when the court ruled that people could not be tried for overthrowing the government on April 11, 2002. There was no coup – it was a “power vacuum” they said. A “vacuum”?!?! What an interesting concept. “No officer, I dind’t steal Mr. Jones car. It was parked on the street, no-one was around, there was an ownership “vacuum”, and I stepped in to fill the vacuum.”

    Anyways, while the Supreme Court hasn’t issued as absurd of a ruling since then it’s not as if it hasn’t tried. Take its recent ruling on income taxes. The Constitutional Chamber of the Supreme Court ruled that income tax could not be applied against irregular income, or bonuses, but only against base income.

  • Joe Hartley

    Well, let’s look at the structure.

    The National Assembly under the 1999 Constitution can remove any judge anywhere for any reason. Doesn’t sound like an independent judiciary to me, even if the National Assembly were still in business, and was not dominated 100% by Chávez forces.

    However, as you surely know, the National Assembly has turned all of its powers over to President Chávez to act by fiat, which includes the power to remove judges. If the Presidente doesn’t like what a judge is doing, the judge is now history, regardless of the merits of the judge’s ruling or position on the issues.

    Now, that may or may not be appropriate or good. What the judiciary clearly isn’t is independent. Like so many judiciaries in Latin America, the Venezuelan judiciary had a long and glorious history of corruption, which led to the original reforms in 1999, and which are certainly understandable. But it came at a price, and the price was judicial independence.

    I don’t understand your venom on the issue. Hope I just caught you on a bad day!

  • Goodness, I’m certainly glad there’s no interference with the legal system by here in the US by Dubya. Oh wait, what about all those those firings… I guess that don’t matter because it happened here.

    I don’t understand why you’re so uniformly and unendingly venomous against Chavez. He must threaten you in some way.

  • Joe Hartley

    Really, Bob, this is unfair. You’ve known me for over 15 years, and when have I ever suggested even so much as a hint of anything other than disdain for the the Bushies? You know me far better than to suggest that I’d ever support the argument that you advance and implicity suggest that I’d support.

    Indeed, the prospect of removing US Attorneys for failing to prosecute “voter fraud” (aka voting while black) or for prosecuting Republican corruption is scary indeed, and raised the same issues that I was trying to get at in the post. The concentration of power is a dangerous things regardless of whose hands it’s concentrated in. I oppose market consolidation and centralization within a semi-capitalist setting (I don’t consider companies like Halliburton to be anything more the crony capitalism of the same type of kleptocrats who ran the Phillipines under Marcos or any of the “Trashistans” that the former Soviet Union left in its wake) as much as the consolidation of power that’s happening in Venezuela, and for the same reasons. The failure of the American Congress to institute ANY oversight over what the Bush administration did for 6 years shows what can happen when there are no competing voices within the political establishment.

    You confuse venom with skepticism. A lot of people, yourself included, treat Chávez in practically regiious terms, as someone incapable of doing wrong. I’ve spent a lot of my life following politics in Latin America, and I’ve seen plenty of people like Chávez. Strongmen, populist leaders are hardly a scarce commodity in Latin America. Every one of them rides a white horse, and every one of them promises to break the chain of whatever the evil of the day is. An argument can be made that a big chunk of Latin American literature, at least on the novel side of the house, is devoted to chronicling their rise and fall: Miguel Asturias in Guatemala, Roa Bastos in Paraguay, even García Márquez in Colombia. There’s nothing new here, and Chávez is not going to turn out to be any different from the rest of them. What’s tragic is that he’s developing yet another clientist government for political support instead of doing real infrastructure changes that could permanently change things. In so doing, he’s simply repeating, for the umpteenth time, what the conservatives in Venezuela did during the last oil boom.

    I don’t recall saying anything particular venomous about him. Being skeptical of somebody else’s hero du jour is hardly venomous (you want to read venom, read the absurd María Anastasia O’Grady in the Wall Street Journal, who sounds like she’s straight from the rightwing Cuban community in Florida). I don’t think he should be assassinated or removed from power; if the Venezuelans want to do something silly, it’s hardly America’s role to be a schoolmarm. The fools in the State Department should back off and let him self-destruct, as he will. I wish he weren’t buying so many arms from the Russians, but that’s a continent-wide problem where the military needs to be curbed dramatically rather than built up. I’m sure he expects an invasion from the United Sates, which given the disaster in Iraq I think unlikely, but I can see how he’d think that way. But that doesn’t make him a great political leader. Simply disliking Bush doesn’t make him a great guy. That kind of thinking is what led us to suppport Al Qaeda against the Soviets–and look what happened.

    Anyway, we’ll know soon enough and we’ll see who’s judged the situation accurately. I might be pleasantly surprised. But I’m not holding my breath.

  • It’s that your conclusions to political problems always end up in the same place. Yes, things are bad, but fools and knaves are everywhere, human nature is flawed, so the best action is to do nothing. And that simply supports the status quo.

  • I’m a 100% Libertarian Communist. While I support many of the accomplishments done by party-campaigning of Chavez in Venezuela, there are too many reasons now to believe he will remain Socialist at all. Not only was there the non-renewal of an opposition television station, denying members of the public a voice to the public forum, but now he wants to consolidate power into….. one…… big…….. party…..

    And I’m sure it’ll be hell for anyone not in it. Count me out. It’ll be a repeat of the French Revolution, or more concurrent, the Bolshevik one.

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