Skip to main content

A calm analysis on Venezuela against the mainstream hysterically anti-Socialist propaganda


There is no question that Venezuela is in very serious difficulties and has been for the last couple of years. The problem is that it's almost impossible to get a balanced, nuanced report on this, in any major Anglophone media outlet, almost all of which, are ferociously hostile to Venezuela's Left-Wing government.

The few reason critics, are distributed in comparatively small publications. Gabriel Hetland, for example, in a balanced piece for the Nation, entitled 'How severe is Venezuela's crisis?', reports that, while 'Venezuela is in the midst of a severe crisis ... mainstream media have consistently misrepresented and significantly exaggerated the severity of the crisis.'

Without question, the biggest problem facing the Venezuelan government, is the precipitous drop in global oil prices, due to OPEC decision to dramatically increase production. A decision that was clearly not driven by economic motives.

As Max Ajl writes for 'In these times', 'plummeting oil revenues mean that Venezuela received 70 million dollars in oil export revenues in February 2016, as against 3 billion dollars in January 2014.' The second major factor in the country's problems, is the exchange rate. Since 2003, the government has used currency controls block capital flight. As Bloomberg reports, it is imposed a variable exchange rate system. This means that dollars are less expensive relative to the bolivar, when purchasing priority goods, including food, medicine and car parts, but far more costly when buying other goods, or when purchasing dollars on the black market.

This has created opportunities for corruption. You can buy dollars cheaply by pretending to import billions of dollars worth of medicines and sell them dearly on the non preferential exchange rate. Thus, private sector arbitrage has contributed to medicine shortages, but it has also allowed criminal operators in the black market to drive up the cost of dollars and thus, helped drive up inflation. This, as Mark Weisbrot writes for The Huffington Post, has 'fueled an inflation-depreciation spiral since the fall of 2012'.

The problem is not state Socialism then, but a policy intended to stop financial panics that is simply enabled spivs to turn a quick buck. Maduro, recognizing this, has, as the Financial Times reports, begun the process of devaluing the currency and lifting some price controls. Importantly, the government has also sought to protect people from the effects of this, by raising the minimum wage and improving food subsidies.

Other factors that contributing to the crisis are contigent. At the worst drought in 47 years, drying up the dams and causing an energy crisis for example. And one of the claims of starvation, as the NGO Food First explains in an in-depth report on Venezuela's crisis: '... there's not an overall food shortage - food is in abundance, with distribution serving a bottleneck.' What is missing is not food, but certain, particular, essential goods, which have been kept off the shelves. The handful of companies which make these goods have a great deal of power and they say that the government's price controls disincentivise them from distributing the needed goods. But many of those goods are not even price-regulated, and all those that are, price increases have not stimulated more availability. Polar, one of the major firms producing these essential items, is owned by a member of the Right-Wing opposition.

The problems now unfolding, nonetheless take place against a significant backdrop of progress. In 2015, the FAO noted that the government had met its millennium development goal of halving hunger and driving down undernourishment, by 'increasing its national interventions and its level of international cooperation'. That is, unlike the old regime, it used petroleum resources address popular needs.

The Obama administration, picking up where Bush failed, decided that this was a moment to push for regime change in Venezuela. As Mark Weisbrot wrote for The Guardian, '... there's $5 m in the 2014 US federal budget for funding opposition activities inside Venezuela, and this is almost certainly the tip of the iceberg - adding to the hundreds of millions of dollars of overt support over the past 15 years.'

In 2015, the Obama administration issued an executive order, declaring Venezuela a threat to US national security and imposing new sanctions. The basis of US government rationales for intervention, is a rising violence in last couple of years, particularly due to deaths occurring during violent Right-Wing opposition protests in 2014. As George Ciccariello-Maher wrote for Jacobin 'The pretext for these sanctions is so-called human rights abuses that occurred more than a year ago, during a wave of street protests against the government of Nicolas Maduro ... the protests were hardly spontaneous ... The means were far from peaceful ... while many of the police responsible for violence were arrested, the same can't be said for the protesters who, for example, decapitated motorcyclists with barbed wire and sniped at police from rooftops.'

The nature of the violence in Venezuela has been widely misreported according to Roberto Lovato writing for Al Jazeera America, who points out the long history of violent efforts by the Right-Wing opposition to resist the social changes enacted by Chavez, culminating in a violence of recent protests. This scene of opposition violence and sabotage is barely alluded to in mainstream reporting.

The absence of context, the white washing of the opposition, the unhinged apocalyptic language used about Venezuela, and the open call for US intervention, after it has been effectively intervening for years, tend to undermine any criticisms coming from the major international media.

Full analysis:

Comments

  1. Are you a fuckin' retard?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Nah, they are hard left socialists. Though, from a distance, it is hard to differentiate the two. Just remember, a fuckin' retard will occasionally by pure accident do something non-destructive. That's how you tell the difference.

      Delete

Post a Comment

Popular posts from this blog

How a group of economists undermined public institutions, paving the way to neoliberalism

An assumption had become a truth. The self-interested model of human behaviour, that had been developed in the Cold War to make the mathematical equations work, had now been adopted by these economists as a fundamental truth about the reality of all human social interaction.
globinfo freexchange
A group of economists in the early 70s arbitrarily adopted the self-interested model of human behaviour that had been developed in the Cold War, to explain the dysfunctionality of public institutions. This perception would become a powerful tool in the hands of the neoliberal ideology, carried by big banks and corporations, to demonize the state and dismantle any state control upon them at the expense of the societies.
In his documentary The Trap, Adam Curtis explains:
In the early 70s, the government bureaucracies in Britain began to collapse. Those around them blamed a growing economic crisis, but it was clear that something much more fundamental had gone wrong. What were supposed to be institut…

Italy, Greece, Deutsche Bank: heavy clouds of non-linear collapse gather again above Europe

globinfo freexchange
For nearly ten years now, the key decision centers inside eurozone are trying to hide the huge problems, pretending that the crisis is behind, in order to maintain a completely failed economic model, which also reveals, day by day, its authoritarian nature and despise against real Democracy. The totally problematic structure of eurozone makes things even worse.
In Italy, we had another political crisis and a constitutional coup because the new majority and potential coalition government is not likeable to the Brussels/Berlin axis.
In Greece, things are not looking better. The country is about to exit the IMF-type neoliberal program imposed by the Troika (ECB, European Commission, IMF), in August. Yet, the economy is still in very bad shape, drowning in stagnation, with unprecedented unemployment, nearly zero growth and a national debt at 180% of GDP, which is actually much higher than Greece's debt in 2010 (120% of GDP) when crisis hit the country!
In fact, the eu…

More evidence that the 2011 riots in Syria were sparked by a false flag operation

globinfo freexchangeIndependent journalist Eva Bartlett spoke with Lee Camp about her recent trip in Syria. Bartlett visited the hospital in Douma where many victims of the latest alleged chemical attack went to receive medical care. Bartlett spoke with a medical student who was working the day of the alleged attack, and actually confirmed the reporting by the veteran journalist Robert Fisk, according to which there was no evidence of a chemical attack.
Bartlett also went to Daraa, where the first protests took place in 2011, and spoke to people there. They confirmed what many other investigative journalists support. 

This is strong evidence that it was a false flag operation that actually sparked the subsequent riots:
In the initial protest, Daraa was named as the birthplace of the so-called revolution. And Daraa is a city in the very south of Syria, not a very large city, and a rather unlikely city for a so-called revolution to have started. But prior going to Daraa, I interviewed a do…

WikiLeaks reveals Italian officials had serious concerns about Italy's ability to participate in the monetary union already since the late 70s

The WIKILEAKS Public Library of US Diplomacy (PlusD)holds the world's largest searchable collection of United States confidential, or formerly confidential, diplomatic communications. As of April 8, 2013 it holds 2 million records comprising approximately 1 billion words. The collection covers US involvements in, and diplomatic or intelligence reporting on, every country on earth. It is the single most significant body of geopolitical material ever published. The PlusD collection, built and curated by WikiLeaks, is updated from a variety of sources, including leaks, documents released under the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) and documents released by the US State Department systematic declassification review.
globinfo freexchange
A 1978 cable from the US Bureau of Economic and Business Affairs to the Secretary of State, was monitoring in detail the Italian serious concerns on the perspective of Italy joining the European monetary union. It describes an atmosphere of anxiety insi…

How eurozone became a financial dictatorship

It all started with the silent coup against Ireland
globinfo freexchange
In 2010, Ireland experienced Frankfurt's political blackmail. On the 18th of November, where there was a governing council of the ECB in Frankfurt. The governor of the Irish central bank who sat on the governing council, called "Morning Ireland" which is the most important radio program in Ireland, to say that Ireland will need what he called a loan. He didn't warn the government about it and this created a massive panic.
Then, the next day, there was a letter written from the then president of ECB, Jean-Claude Trichet, to Brian Lenihan, the minister of finance at the time, saying that 'if you don't apply the so-called bailout program, by this opening of the markets the following Monday, we're going to cut off access to Emergency Liquidity Assistance (ELA)', which obviously would have collapsed the Irish banking system.
The ECB used the liquidity weapon in order to impose its terms o…

David Harvey: unless there is some real new thinking, another crisis is inevitable

globinfo freexchange
Chris Hedges spoke with David Harvey about the repeated crises of the capitalist system, which generate further instability, especially since the early 70s where we have the rise of financial capitalism and neoliberal ideology.
As Harvey points out:
Interestingly, in almost every crisis there has been a good deal of re-evaluation of exactly how to think about the economy, how to think about the relationship between state power and politics and all this kind of stuff.
Since 2007-08, is hardly any new thinking at all. And actually, we're trying to hang on. And we are trying to hang on because the oligarchy - which has all of the money, all of the power - is actually in a situation where it does not want any change. And until we confront the oligarchy, we're not going to find a way of exiting from this, apart from repeating what happened in 2007-08.
And the interesting thing when you look back, before 2007-08, and you see big financial crises in Argentina, in Braz…

The facts about Venezuela’s May 20th Presidential Election

Despite a high level of election transparency, one that Jimmy Carter called “the best in the world”, the US and its allies have accused Venezuela of election fraud. Caleb Maupin breaks down how Venezuela’s electoral system really works.
by Caleb T. Maupin
Part 3 - Accusations of Fraud
Despite the stringent safeguards in place to protect Venezuela’s election integrity, international media based in Western countries have widely claimed the election was fraudulent. Those claiming that the results are illegitimate have cited prior statements from SmartMatic, a corporation based in London that manufactured Venezuela’s voting machines. An official statement from SmartMatic claimed the 2017 Constitutional Referendum vote showed “tamper evident.” Statements from SmartMatic have been vague about how exactly the results were illegitimate or what malpractice took place.
Tibisay Lucena, president of the National Elections Center (CNE), says the claims from SmartMatic and its Chief Executive Antonio …

Will the Swiss citizens beat the banksters today?

About 5.3 million Swiss citizens, including registered members of the Swiss Abroad community, are eligible to take part in the June 10, 2018 ballot. Votes on a broad range of issues, as well as elections, also take place in many cantons and municipalities across the country.
globinfo freexchange
The Swiss sovereign-money referendum of June 2018, also known as the Sovereign-Money Initiative, aims to give the central bank of Switzerland the sole authority of "creating money."
This is actually what the proponents of the Swiss "Vollgeld Initiative" want. They say only the government, through the publicly-owned Swiss central bank (SNB), should be able to create money and put it into circulation.
The Sovereign Money Initiative aims to give the Swiss Confederation a monopoly on money creation, including demand deposit (full-reserve banking, by including the creation of scriptural money in the legal mandate of the Swiss National Bank. The name of the initiative was inspired by…

Stock market: one of the biggest frauds in the age of financial capitalism

globinfo freexchange
Lee Camp speaks with Tan Liu about his revealing book The Ponzi Factor, where Liu exposes all the big fraud of the stock market. Liu explains why the stock market, especially today, in the era of financial capitalism, is the purest definition of a Ponzi scheme:
The issue, of course, is profits from stocks and what makes a stock price move, is not the earnings and growth. It is actually money from another investor. Now, is there a connection at all with respect to earnings and growth and this price movement? Yes, it's called a speculative connection. It is not a legal one. It is not a logical one. It is not a definitive, or, a mathematical one.
The SEC defines three basic features of a Ponzi scheme:
One, it is an investment scenario. Two, the investment profits come from other investors. Three, the investors think the profits come from somewhere else.
What we can clearly observe every single day, every single moment the stocks are trading, is an event where the stoc…

Marx predicted our present crisis – and points the way out

The Communist Manifesto foresaw the predatory and polarised global capitalism of the 21st century. But Marx and Engels also showed us that we have the power to create a better world.
by Yanis Varoufakis
Part 1 - The spirit of communism driving the manifesto is proving hard to silence
For a manifesto to succeed, it must speak to our hearts like a poem while infecting the mind with images and ideas that are dazzlingly new. It needs to open our eyes to the true causes of the bewildering, disturbing, exciting changes occurring around us, exposing the possibilities with which our current reality is pregnant. It should make us feel hopelessly inadequate for not having recognised these truths ourselves, and it must lift the curtain on the unsettling realisation that we have been acting as petty accomplices, reproducing a dead-end past. Lastly, it needs to have the power of a Beethoven symphony, urging us to become agents of a future that ends unnecessary mass suffering and to inspire humanity …