Monday, December 03, 2007

Hugo Chavez's Defeat

In a surprise defeat, today several proposals backed by Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez were voted down. The proposals would have affected Venezuela's Constitution and, among others, would have allowed the president the ability to run for and indefinite number of terms, enact states of emergency indefinitely, and increase the state's role in the economy. The Venezuelan democracy survived by the skin of its teeth with a close 49/51 point spread.

For a while now its been somewhat popular for liberal celebrities to make dignitary visits to Venezuela to show their support for Chavez, and while I think post in the axis of evil, or whatever other catchy name they've come up with now, is highly exaggerated, I find many things to dislike about the man. He is an egomanical leader who has pushed the position of president to the brink of monarchy -- it's the executive branch run amok (sound familiar?). His most egregious act was to shut down a television network off the air earlier this year.

Of course, I will give him his dues. He did provide cheap oil for the needy in Massachusetts and has pushed a series of populist proposals in Venezuela for which the people apparently love him. At least he was actually elected, unlike other presidents. I guess the Venezuelan people decided as much as they like the guy, like most house guests, they don't like him in perpetuity.

Oh well, Chavez is South America's old news. Of all the leftists South American presidents I've always been a bigger fan of Evo Morales. How much do you want to bet his campaign slogan was "Even his names says morals...Morales!" Hey Morales, do ya happen to need a new campaign manager? (call me).

Where does he get those wonderful sweaters?

This of course begs the question of what will happen when Chavez has run out of terms and must leave the presidency? Once thing's for sure, Noam Chomsky is going to have to find a new agent. (call me).

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