Tag Archives: Hugo Chavez

Daily Headline – 09/03/13

Nicolas Maduro sworn in as Venezuelan acting president

Nicolas MaduroNicolas Maduro, who was the vice-president while Hugo Chavez was still alive has been sworn in as interim president of Venezuela.

Mr Maduro is the man that Hugo Chavez had hoped would succeed him and there will be fresh elections within 30 days.

In predictable style the opposition has claimed that the ceremony is unconstitutional and that Mr Maduro had no right to be sworn in as acting president.

So… a leader dies and his deputy takes over for 30 days until a new leader can be democratically elected… I think the opposition doesn’t have a leg to stand on.

Who is Nicolas Maduro?

Well in terms of personality he is the opposite of Hugo Chavez but lets face it, not many could match Chavez’s charisma, Mr Maduro is a much calmer and quieter man.

He is also said to a follower of Sathya Sai Baba, the late Indian guru amongst other things known for his quote:

“Love All, Serve All
Help Ever, Hurt Never”

Mr Maduro is known as ‘the negotiator’, he is said to be a diplomatic man who is always open to other peoples opinions and suggestions, he is someone you can sit down with and talk to and he will listen.

He is also a staunch anti-imperialist and is happy to align with anyone critical and outspoken against US hegemony.

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Chavez on privatisation

Here is a quote from the late Hugo Chavez that is well worth thinking about:

“Privatisation is a neo-liberal and imperialist plan. Health can’t be privatised because it is a fundamental human right, nor can education, water, electricity and other public services. They can’t be surrendered to private capital that denies the people from their rights”

Daily Headline – 06/03/13

Hugo Chávez obituary

Hugo ChavezHugo Chávez, the Populist leader of Venezuela died yesterday on the 5th of March. A charismatic leader to the poor and an enemy to the rich, Chavez was widely loved for his reforms that massively increased the living standards of the masses in Venezuela.
After a failed military coup d’état, Chávez was arrested. Upon his release, Chávez stood for president with a promise to sweep aside the old order, rewrite the constitution and eliminate corruption. He was swept into power, riding a wave of disgust with the system and politics, he won 56% of the vote.
An elected assembly, almost entirely composed of his supporters, produced a constitution – approved by referendum in December 1999 – that extended the presidential term to six years and allowed immediate re-election. The senate was abolished, the role of the armed forces expanded, and new “moral” and “electoral” branches of government created.

The country’s name was changed to the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela, in honour of the liberation hero Simón Bolívar, whose cause – betrayed, allegedly, by the “oligarchy” – Chávez claimed to have inherited.

His reforms included state housing being built, private property being seized, and main industries nationalised. Small businesses are given start up grants, unemployment was nearly halved, and poverty decreased.

“He’s the sort of president who only comes around perhaps every two centuries,” says Francisco Morón, speaking from his new three-bedroom home, which he was given by the government last year after 25 years of homelessness.

Hugo Chávez, 1954-2013

“We must confront the privileged elite who have destroyed a large part of the world.”
Hugo Chavez

Daily Headline – 03/03/13

Venezuela; Hugo Chavez still in hospital

Chavez Venezuelan flagHugo Chavez, the president of Venezuela, has been suffering from cancer for some time now and after several rounds of treatment in Cuba he remains in a Venezuelan hospital, unable to speak.

Chavez is seen as a real divisive figure with 45% voting against him at the last elections.

The poor and working class like him because he spends the petrol revenues on social programs and helping improve their standard of living and the wealthy hate him because he spends the petrol revenues on social programs and helping improve the lives of the poor.

Internationally Hugo Chavez is generally supported by the left though not entirely, even among the international left he is divisive.

Personally I am not one for hearsay, I like to look at the stats… and the stats are not good!

Hugo Chavez has been president for 14 years (came to power in 1999) which is by no means ‘too long’ (he is the 24th longest current serving leader) but how has he and Venezuela performed?

HDI ranking – Currently 73rd (2011)

1995 – 53rd
2000 – 58th
2005 – 74th
2010 – 73rd

HDI is the UN’s Human Development Index, it attempts to measure standard of living.

Life expectancy

2010 – 79th (73.8 overall)
2000 – 52nd (73.3 overall)
1990 – 50th (71.2 overall)

Life expectancy is getting better but at a slower rate to other countries.

The truth is something that always seems to be hidden in a web of media bullshit and left/right agendas.

The Guardian, for example, is reporting that the homeless in Venezuela have been given free houses and that lots of money has been spent on social programs and while I don’t deny this, it is clear from the stats that something doesn’t add up. Either the stats from the UN and other ‘trusted’ resources are false or Chavez’s regime is not all it’s made out to be.

What do you think? Is life getting better in Venezuela? Are you from Venezuela? And finally, what do you think will happen once Chavez steps down or passes away?