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Fidel's "Mini-Me" in Caracas

MiamiFlorida

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"........ Chavez and his cronies have been busy converting Venezuela's nascent democracy into a dictatorship. While paying lip service to democratic values, they have gradually been stripping Venezuelans of their basic rights and freedoms. The protests of other governments and of human rights organizations, meanwhile, have fallen on deaf ears. "

http://www.defenddemocracy.org/research_topics/research_topics_show.htm?doc_id=253728

Any ideas of where Chavez is headed?
 

MiamiFlorida

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Simon W. Moon said:
P.A.T.R.I.O.T. A.C.T. ?
Interesting comparison.

To quote Senator Feingoldd:

"Now here is where my caution in the aftermath of the terrorist attacks and my concerns over the reach of the anti-terrorism bill come together. To the extent that the expansive new immigration powers that the bill grants to the Attorney General are subject to abuse, who do we think that is most likely to bear the brunt of the abuse? It won't be immigrants from Ireland. It won't be immigrants from El Salvador or Nicaragua. It won't even be immigrants from Haiti or Africa. It will be immigrants from Arab, Muslim and South Asian countries. In the wake of these terrible events out government has been given vast new powers and they may fall most heavily on a minority of our population who already feel particularly acutely the pain of this disaster."

Having said that....would you rather live in Venezuela or in our imperfect, paranoid.....and xenophobic...society?

At least here we cas say Congress giveth and Congress taketh away.
 

Bergslagstroll

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MiamiFlorida said:
"........ Chavez and his cronies have been busy converting Venezuela's nascent democracy into a dictatorship. While paying lip service to democratic values, they have gradually been stripping Venezuelans of their basic rights and freedoms. The protests of other governments and of human rights organizations, meanwhile, have fallen on deaf ears. "

http://www.defenddemocracy.org/research_topics/research_topics_show.htm?doc_id=253728

Any ideas of where Chavez is headed?
Just one question how much did you protest over the military coup a couple of years of go, there the leaders tried to turn Venezuela into a dictaturship. You can say that you want about Chavez but atleast he have been reelected many time compared to Castro that never have run in a fair election.
 

MiamiFlorida

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Bergslagstroll said:
Just one question how much did you protest over the military coup a couple of years of go, there the leaders tried to turn Venezuela into a dictaturship. You can say that you want about Chavez but atleast he have been reelected many time compared to Castro that never have run in a fair election.
As a matter of fact, I DID protest. Military copus just change one set of oppressors for another. A democratically elected government has to be respected......... just as that government has to be accountable for its actions.

It's interesting that you brought up "fair" elections.
 

Simon W. Moon

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MiamiFlorida said:
It's interesting that you brought up "fair" elections.
I've not examined the issue. Weren't the election in Venez monitored?
 

Diogenes

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MiamiFlorida said:
"........ Chavez and his cronies have been busy converting Venezuela's nascent democracy into a dictatorship. While paying lip service to democratic values, they have gradually been stripping Venezuelans of their basic rights and freedoms. The protests of other governments and of human rights organizations, meanwhile, have fallen on deaf ears. "
Note that Venezuela owns Citgo. Just something to keep in mind the next time you fill the tank.
 

Bergslagstroll

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MiamiFlorida said:
As a matter of fact, I DID protest. Military copus just change one set of oppressors for another. A democratically elected government has to be respected......... just as that government has to be accountable for its actions.

It's interesting that you brought up "fair" elections.
Really good that you protested against the coup. And then it comes to elections Chavez has been elected many cases in election that is pretty "fair" but of course you can have objection to them. According to independenent sources: http://cartercenter.org/doc1801.htm I hope you are not that kind of people that want to call a liberal capitalist a crazy socialist/communist.

So still is a big diffrence betweens Castro and Chavez and then it comes to fair how fair is the media in Venezuela?
 

MiamiFlorida

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Bergslagstroll said:
Really good that you protested against the coup. And then it comes to elections Chavez has been elected many cases in election that is pretty "fair" but of course you can have objection to them. According to independenent sources: http://cartercenter.org/doc1801.htm I hope you are not that kind of people that want to call a liberal capitalist a crazy socialist/communist.

So still is a big diffrence betweens Castro and Chavez and then it comes to fair how fair is the media in Venezuela?
As I said before, the Jimmy Carter Center is no criteria. They don't have the resources or manpower to monitor election fraud. Wishful thinking is not a "source".

Now some comments from the National Review on Jimmy Carter, whom I voted for...unfortunately:

"As our commander in chief, Jimmy Carter consistently displayed three basic characteristics: hapless incompetence, (what a charitable person might describe as) a distaste for confrontation and danger, and — paradoxically, given the first two — an almost cartoonishly inflated ego. In short, Jimmy Carter was the deputy sheriff Barney Fife of American presidents: alternatively bumbling, then petrified, then egomaniacal, then back to bumbling, and so on for four long, surreal years. One of history's true buffoons, Jimmy Carter was, at best, a post-Nixon electoral palate cleanser of a president whose sole contribution to America's legacy was readying the way for Reagan by his own ineptitude. Or to put it another way, Carter was the transitional boyfriend we dated briefly just after Nixon broke our heart and just before Reagan swept us off our feet. I do wish someone would tell Carter that: He still thinks he's the love of our life."

".....Soon the Man from Plains was breaking bread with the mass murderers like Kim Jong Il and Fidel Castro, certifying sham elections of freedom's enemies in Venezuela and elsewhere, and keeping up his trademark torrent of anti-Israeli rhetoric. Eventually the Nobel committee pretty much had to give him a statue, if only to stop his infernal yapping, already — heck, Arafat and Gorbachev already had theirs, and without Carter they'd have to go to Plan "B": Phil Donahue. "
 

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Ok I understand you can have a valide point, I don't know how many neutral observer it was. Still the BBC don't write about any big frauds in there analyzis of the referendum. http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/americas/3247816.stm
But I guess it is very hard to convince you.

My personally stand point is that he his democratic election and I hope he will suceed to create a more democratic and equal venezuela. But of course there is a risk that either his govermenent or the opposition goes to far. Therefore is it necessiray with accurate and non hatred critizism of both his goverment and the opposition. Because Chaves has done alot of good for venezeul at the same time some of his action is questionable. At the same time you can questions the integregrity of the opposition and how democratic there are.

Also it is important to remember how Venezuela was then Chavez toke over. There a majority of people lived in poverty and many ther illitare. There only around 30 percent went to vote compared to todays number. And yes there are alot more today and maybee he will not suceed but atleast he have given hope to the people.
 

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Bergslagstroll said:
Ok I understand you can have a valide point, I don't know how many neutral observer it was. Still the BBC don't write about any big frauds in there analyzis of the referendum. http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/americas/3247816.stm
But I guess it is very hard to convince you.

My personally stand point is that he his democratic election and I hope he will suceed to create a more democratic and equal venezuela. But of course there is a risk that either his govermenent or the opposition goes to far. Therefore is it necessiray with accurate and non hatred critizism of both his goverment and the opposition. Because Chaves has done alot of good for venezeul at the same time some of his action is questionable. At the same time you can questions the integregrity of the opposition and how democratic there are.

Also it is important to remember how Venezuela was then Chavez toke over. There a majority of people lived in poverty and many ther illitare. There only around 30 percent went to vote compared to todays number. And yes there are alot more today and maybee he will not suceed but atleast he have given hope to the people.
Frankly, I am not impressed with the European Media's coverage of human rights violations in Latin America. That includes the BBC. It took Europe 45 years to condemn Fidel Castro as the worst dictator in our hemisphere's history.

The European media likes to concentrate only on human rights violators who are right-wing, but totally ignore those on the left side of the spectrum. It has always been that way.

While the Colombian paramilitaries are condemned on a daily basis (and rightly so) rarely do you read editorials in the leading European newspapers about the F.A.R.C.,..... the bloodiest terrorist group in the Americas, with a 50-year record of violence during which it has killed more than 50,000 civilans, kidnapped tens of thousands of children, and displaced more than 5 million.

The FARC has links with Basque Fatherland & Liberty (ETA), a Spanish terrorist organization, and has enlisted the help of Irish Republican Army explosives experts (based in Havana) in making gas cylinder bombs and anti-personnel mines that have killed and maimed thousands. Outside of Colombia, the FARC trades drugs for guns with terrorist operatives from the Middle East operating in South America.

Indeed, members of the F.A.R.C. and the smaller, but not less deadly E.L.N. have been received in European capitals as "noble warriors".....and provided with moral and financial support. France and Sweden have objected to including them in the EU list of terrorist organizations believing that these groups could be enticed into another unproductive peace process.

The European double standard that..... applauds an indictment of Pinochet (rightly so) for human rights abuses and ignores Castro (who has committed a thousand times the atrocities of the former) is not lost on the millions of us who have suffered at the hands of Caudillos and marxist dictators and terrorists.

So, forgive me if it's very hard to convince me using the BBC as reference.

Closing our eyes to what Chavez is systematically doing in his country....and playing "ostrich"...is not going to make the problem go away. "Hoping" for a democratic and equal Venezuela has to be accompanied by asking hard questions, reporting facts rather than opinions, and making Fidel's Mini-Me accountable to the International community for what he's doing to his people.

Anyone who has kept his eyes open can clearly see that in fact, recent events prove Chávez is consolidating an authoritarian revolution.

Last December, government prosecutors charged political activist Maria Corina Machado with treason for providing technical advice for a petition drive that led to the August 15 referendum on Chávez’s rule. (Where are your "neutral observers" now?) Meanwhile, Chávez enacted a law permitting the state to close private media for vaguely defined offenses against public order. The government also has new authority to jail street protesters now reportedly with the help of Cuban police who can search Venezuelan homes and help with arrests.
 

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MiamiFlorida said:
"........ Chavez and his cronies have been busy converting Venezuela's nascent democracy into a dictatorship. While paying lip service to democratic values, they have gradually been stripping Venezuelans of their basic rights and freedoms. The protests of other governments and of human rights organizations, meanwhile, have fallen on deaf ears. "

http://www.defenddemocracy.org/research_topics/research_topics_show.htm?doc_id=253728

Any ideas of where Chavez is headed?
Well of course, with such GREAT linkls as these (remember you don't like links to the venezuelian govt??)

WHO are the people behind this non-partisan and honest site?

Steve Forbes
Dr. Jeane J. Kirkpatrick
Newt Gingrich
R. James Woolsey

And that's just part of it..

Great link, Miami. Try to provide us better ones for DISCUSSION.. and DEBATE.

Just my opinion..

Y
 

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Sorry to say but you also to be abit too bias. Just for example that you said that Castro was thousand time worse then Pinochetet yes I know it was a overstatement but still. Also then you call Castro the wort dictator in the history of your hemisphere. Becaue if you look on it objectivily Castro is not the nicest guy and that he created a more equal society is not an excuse for his methods. But still he is not that much worse then Pinochet in American history because you history is fulled with many brutale regimes both in recent history and in the past.

But yes europeans have bit abit to "nice" to left wing movement but also right wing movement remember Margaret Thatcher and Pinochet. Also rememeber Americas support to rightwing movement that was much more concrete then European countries support to left wing movements in South America.
 

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epr64 said:
Well of course, with such GREAT linkls as these (remember you don't like links to the venezuelian govt??)

WHO are the people behind this non-partisan and honest site?

Steve Forbes
Dr. Jeane J. Kirkpatrick
Newt Gingrich
R. James Woolsey

And that's just part of it..

Great link, Miami. Try to provide us better ones for DISCUSSION.. and DEBATE.

Just my opinion..

Y
How about some impartial ones of your own?

And how debating content rather than source? This is something we can't do with Venezuelan Government links, you know.
 

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Bergslagstroll said:
Sorry to say but you also to be abit too bias. Just for example that you said that Castro was thousand time worse then Pinochetet yes I know it was a overstatement but still. Also then you call Castro the wort dictator in the history of your hemisphere. Becaue if you look on it objectivily Castro is not the nicest guy and that he created a more equal society is not an excuse for his methods. But still he is not that much worse then Pinochet in American history because you history is fulled with many brutale regimes both in recent history and in the past.

But yes europeans have bit abit to "nice" to left wing movement but also right wing movement remember Margaret Thatcher and Pinochet. Also rememeber Americas support to rightwing movement that was much more concrete then European countries support to left wing movements in South America.
Is it an overstatement? I think not. Castro has executed thousands of political dissidents.....imprisioned well over 50,000 for decades and forced 20% of the population of his country into exile.

I don't claim to be objective about Castro. I don't excercise objectivity with tyrants.
 

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Just take a look on the CIA factbook. I believe it admits it there
 

MiamiFlorida

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josh said:
Just take a look on the CIA factbook. I believe it admits it there
To repeat my statement: We have Castro's word for it.

Shall I explain?

The only figures...and statistics...that come out of Castro's Cuba are those provided by the Cuban government. Information continues to be a monopoly of the state.

And the more that one and a half million Cubans who have left the country tell a very different story.
 

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MiamiFlorida said:
The European media likes to concentrate only on human rights violators who are right-wing, but totally ignore those on the left side of the spectrum. It has always been that way.

While the Colombian paramilitaries are condemned on a daily basis (and rightly so) rarely do you read editorials in the leading European newspapers about the F.A.R.C.,..... the bloodiest terrorist group in the Americas, with a 50-year record of violence during which it has killed more than 50,000 civilans, kidnapped tens of thousands of children, and displaced more than 5 million.

Outside of Colombia, the FARC trades drugs for guns with terrorist operatives from the Middle East operating in South America.
I've seen a lot of stuff about how bad the FARC is. And yes they do use a lot of extortion and kidnapping, the paramilitaries assasinate and massacre. The paramilitaries have also been seen working alongside the Colombian military, according to some eyewitness villagers who had many in their village killed.

Also about the FARC and drugs, the FARC dates back to the 1940's, the drugs in Colombia DO NOT, also the FARC only taxes the drugs. In their territory people can plant what they feel like, trading drugs is just heavily taxed. Also in FARC territory drug use is STRICTLY forbidden. Punishment for crimes usually ends up working on a civil project(roads,bridges,etc.)

And the paramilitaries are suspected to have deeper involvement with the drug trade.

Anyways, the US support there were destroying crops. If sometimes if it was 'legal' crops, they were a lot of times destroyed, who were living off them. But even if they did destroy drug crops, it would make more profitable growing them, worsening the problem. An FARC commander pointed out that most of the helicopters and planes were really used to watch the FARC.

Also the paramilitaries often get the same training and supplies as the military.

Also Colombia produces more than half of the oil Venezuela does. Another oil war.

Diplaced 5 mil.? probably because of fights between military/paramilitary, they probably also helped.

Also I think the figure was 35 mil. out of 40 mil. are in poverty, 10 mil. in extreme poverty.

The FARC is strictly Colombian, not Arabian.

I don't support every action by the FARC, but I hope they win over the government, and the people.
 
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Bergslagstroll

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MiamiFlorida said:
Is it an overstatement? I think not. Castro has executed thousands of political dissidents.....imprisioned well over 50,000 for decades and forced 20% of the population of his country into exile.

I don't claim to be objective about Castro. I don't excercise objectivity with tyrants.

Sorry but it is because most people agree that atleast 3000 people got killed and many more tortured during the years Pinochet had the power. So if Castro was a thousand time worse he had to kill around 3 million. But as I said before you made a overstatment. That I meant with too much bias is exactly that, because with tyrants the truth is enough.

The general problem I think is that it has been very hard to with democratic means create equality and a more democratic society in South America. Leading to that you on one side had the rich people and companies backed by the USA that held back social movements for equality and also used brutal means to stop such movements. Leading to that many choose a armed fight against the capatilistic goverments, leading to new problem. Becuase even if the new revultionist goverment brought more equality to the people they endeed as dictatorships.

Also you have cases like Chile were you hade a democratic goverment that was overturned because it was to socialistic. The same thing happened in Venezueala. But in Venezuela the goverment was reinstalled and didn't counter with brutale means against the counterrevolutionist. So maybee Venezuela can be a good example that today the choise havn't to be between Pinochet or Castro in South America. Even if it still a change that eather Chavez or the oppostion mess it up.

One last thing, the thing about Castro forcing his people into exile. That is not something specific for Cuba and can have both economical and political reasons. Just look at all the Mexicans that want to come to the USA, and compared to cubans they are not welcomed with open arms.
 

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Bergslagstroll said:
Sorry but it is because most people agree that atleast 3000 people got killed and many more tortured during the years Pinochet had the power. So if Castro was a thousand time worse he had to kill around 3 million. But as I said before you made a overstatment. That I meant with too much bias is exactly that, because with tyrants the truth is enough.

The general problem I think is that it has been very hard to with democratic means create equality and a more democratic society in South America. Leading to that you on one side had the rich people and companies backed by the USA that held back social movements for equality and also used brutal means to stop such movements. Leading to that many choose a armed fight against the capatilistic goverments, leading to new problem. Becuase even if the new revultionist goverment brought more equality to the people they endeed as dictatorships.

Also you have cases like Chile were you hade a democratic goverment that was overturned because it was to socialistic. The same thing happened in Venezueala. But in Venezuela the goverment was reinstalled and didn't counter with brutale means against the counterrevolutionist. So maybee Venezuela can be a good example that today the choise havn't to be between Pinochet or Castro in South America. Even if it still a change that eather Chavez or the oppostion mess it up.

One last thing, the thing about Castro forcing his people into exile. That is not something specific for Cuba and can have both economical and political reasons. Just look at all the Mexicans that want to come to the USA, and compared to cubans they are not welcomed with open arms.
When a say 1,000 times...it's a figure of speech. You understand that, dont you?


As for the almost 2 million Cubans that Castro forced out: Before 1959 Cubans could enter the United States at will and yet, except for those who came in as tourists, very few did. Cubans also had right of Citizenship in Spain and very few accepted. As a matter of fact.....when Castro took over, there were 12,000 applications in the Cuban Embassy in Madrid of Spanish citizens who wanted to emigrate to Cuba.....and another 10,000 applications in the Cuban embassy in Rome for Italian citizens seeking to emigrate.

You see, in 1957....2 years before the revolution (Ginsburg World Atlas) Cuba was the most developed nation in Latin America....one of the 11 most developed nations in the planet. It was #6 in doctors, dentists and healthcare workers per capita, and #6 also in sanitary indexes. It had the highest per capita income in L.A., the highest calorie consumption, and #2 (behind Argentina) in literacy. This was 48 years ago....when Spain was a Third World Country.

Castro merely transformed the country from developed nation to Third World Banana dictatorship.

That story about Latin America being backwards because of American companies doesn't wash anymore. Those are dusty slogans. Latin America is backward because of corruption.....because of the caste system that separates the very rich from the poor.....because of protectionism....because of irresponsible monetary practices....because of government monopolies.....because of political nepotism....because of military spending......because governments don't respect the sanctity of contracts and scare away foreign investment.


In fact, the United States does VERY LITTLE business in Latin America. You may not be aware of this, but the bulk of our exports are to developed nations.....and..... We buy much, much more from China than we do from Latin America....and when there was no China: Japan. You see, my friend, for a capitalist country like ours, democratic prosperous nations are in our best interests, not the opposite: they can buy more from us.

Time will tell what will happen in Venezuela....and you know something?....History has a habit of repeating itself.
 

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Is Ginsburg World Atlas a famaous Atlas? How did you find it? Do you have any more exact figures from it? Becuase I just looked it up in Encarta and there decsribe a very diffrent pictures of Cuba before Castro; http://encarta.msn.com/

Well it's historical fact not dusty slogans that USA have supported alot of goverments and organisation in latin america that was pro business but not that much pro human rights and democracy. Also it is easy to presume that USA did in the 70 and 80 still have a affect on todays development, even if you can discuse how big that effect is depending on the country. Also you forget IMF and the Worldbanks involvment in latin america that havn't always been that succesful.

But that is the best interest of your capatilist companies? Because as you self said they have decreased their trade with democratic Japan and increased it with dicatorship China.

Yes history may repeat itself but the history between Cuba and Venezuela is in many aspect diffrent.
 

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Bergslagstroll said:
Is Ginsburg World Atlas a famaous Atlas? How did you find it? Do you have any more exact figures from it? Becuase I just looked it up in Encarta and there decsribe a very diffrent pictures of Cuba before Castro; http://encarta.msn.com/

Well it's historical fact not dusty slogans that USA have supported alot of goverments and organisation in latin america that was pro business but not that much pro human rights and democracy. Also it is easy to presume that USA did in the 70 and 80 still have a affect on todays development, even if you can discuse how big that effect is depending on the country. Also you forget IMF and the Worldbanks involvment in latin america that havn't always been that succesful.

But that is the best interest of your capatilist companies? Because as you self said they have decreased their trade with democratic Japan and increased it with dicatorship China.

Yes history may repeat itself but the history between Cuba and Venezuela is in many aspect diffrent.
Not all of us get our references from the Internet:

http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/t...f=sr_1_3/104-6900992-2925555?v=glance&s=books.


Also, if you want many other good sources on the subject, you can look in the bibliography of:

"Manual del Perfecto Idiota Latinoamericano"...Carlos Alberto Montaner, Plinio Apuleyo Mendoza and Alvaro Vargas Llosa.

The book has a prologue by Nobel nominee Mario Vargas Llosa

C.A. Montaner, who lives in Spain, is the most read writer/Journalist in the Spanish Language

P.A. Mendoza is one of Colombia's best writers...shadowed only by our marxist-capitalist friend Gabriel Garcia Marquez.

I'm sure you can find a French copy...after all, we have a Spanish version of "Le Livre noir du communisme"

Well...if you are going back to the Cold War, I'd like to remind you and your countrymen that before there was a Vietnam, there was Indochine. Remember Algeria?...Chad, Congo, Gabon, Lebanon, Syria, Laos, Cambodia?

The World Bank has never put a gun to the head of any government to borrow money. And the World Bank is not owned by the United States.

Since you bring up our trade with China....have you noticed how the Chinese standard of living has increased....how the Chinese government which is still communist... has eased its grip on the population? I wonder why.

I suppose you guys didn't have a monopoly on Iraqui oil during Saddam Husseins regime, right? And your companies don't do business and sell weapons to rogue states, right?

This is 2005. There are 33 democracies and 1 dictatorship in the Americas, our back yard.

Your back yard is Africa and the Middle East. How you doing?

I like our report card better.
 
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