US screwing around in Venezuela?

Your view should also embrace complications about Chavez, and not a knee-jerk embrace of any David who stands up to the American Goliath.

The problem with that kind of automatic approval of a Chavez is to ignore anything that is wrong with him, and whether his campaign had enough chutzpah and propaganda to even hoodwink the good and intellectual Reverend Blair.

Reverend Blair
I don't that Chavez is "any David", as you put it. He has done what he said he was going to do when he ran for President. He has helped the poor not just of his country, but of all countries.

There is a danger that if Washington pushes too hard, especially with their political dirty tricks, that Chavez will back away from democracy. His leadership has been instrumental in several democratic socialists coming to power in South America though. That can fall the other way as well. If Venezuela is pushed into totalitarianism several other nations will follow.

If Washington leaves Chavez alone he will stay democratic. His strength comes from the Venezuelan people and they will tolerate nothing less.
You may be right, Rev Blair.

But you have a lot of assumptions which predicate any evil Chavez does is only because of American skullduggery.

He might find America to be a convenient bogey man to consolidate power while he hoodwinks you with the belief that the poor no longer exist in Venezuela.

I find your skepticism of American actions well-founded but I am continally amazed by your gullibility, your willingness to drop skepticism elsewhere.

If Washington leaves Chavez alone he will stay democratic?

I have nowhere near the confidence you have.

Your skepticism is inconsistent and highly selective to match your belief system.
Reverend Blair
The CIA was almost certainly involved in the coup attempt. There is no doubt at all that Bush eagerly and prematurely recognized the dictatorship that seized power for only a few short hours. There is absolutely no doubt that there was massive amounts of American money pumped into the political campaigns against Chavez. There is no doubt that the rhetoric from White House has been overwhelming negative.

You want to know why? A 30% tax on oil...up from 16%. A 30% royalty on that oil too. Oh, and here's the kicker...Venezuela gets a 51% share in all oil ventures in their country. Bush is pissed off because his corporate pals aren't getting as rich as they'd like.

So what if the money is paying for doctors and teachers?
I read the news about it too.

Long before that effort, Chavez was broadcasting his intentions to use Amerika as his bogey man to consolidate his grab for power of the oil.

Then our leaders thought to protect American interest in access to that oil, knowing that this deadly ink can kill an economy and affect millions of people.

This is power struggle at its ugliest.

There is always a moment when all leaders must sit it out and wait for their nation to be mugged or hurt.

Most with power cannot do it.

You will see your own country whore for the Chinese promise.

You have seen the Europeans prostitute itself for Saddam contracts during the whole period of mythical containment.

America's hands should have stayed out.

No doubt about that.

But in the high dark stratosphere of world leaders, they look at the macro effect to their national economy and the numbers are so large that would affect so many of their own people that moral clarity is only left for those such as you who have no clue what alternatives countries must face when they must morally do nothing.

Technology to wean ourselves from oil would help, but no country (NO COUNTRY) is anywhere near oil independence.

But that is a myth on a macro-economic level too.

I still support your condemnation, but when you look at the poor and middle class in your own cities, you have no idea how other countries can and will hold your people hostage, and then what clarity of morality can your leader say to you?
Reverend Blair
Venezuela is oil independent. Canada could be if it didn't export to the US. Much of the Middle East is oil independent.
You got a mind like a steel trap.

Reverend Blair
You present fallacies, I point them out.
I read an article last year about how Chavez wanted to provide health care services to the poor. The medical professional association in Venezuala would not cooperate with him, so he staffed the new medical clinics in the poor neighbourhoods with Cuban doctors, nicely circumnavigating the medical profession. Cuba apparently trains lots of doctors and supplies the equivalent of billions of dollars in foreign aid each year through training doctors for poor countries. I think what the US doesn't like about all this is that these countries are making their own arrangements to solve various problems and make progress, thereby demonstrating that no one needs US "help". Go Chavez, go!
Reverend Blair
Yeah, Chavez pays for all of that with oil...which Cuba desperately needs. That drives the old cold warriors scooters.
Quote: Originally Posted by Reverend Blair

The truth is that Venezuela could export to China or the EU. It is them that's feeding you.

Truth China can not nor the EU refine the crude oil venezuela pumps out. That is why we get 90% of their crude oil.
Reverend Blair
If they had a guaranteed supply, China would build refineries. Venezuela is beginning to look at expanding their value-added industries in respect to oil though, so even that may become a non-factor.
Chavez is an interesting character.

It is very likely he will become the new Fidel Castro of Latin America.

I am not convinced that he is on the up and up as all of you jump into believing.

And I understand thoroughly the facts that support your anti-Amerika, anti-Bush bias.

Perhaps we will watch what he does.

But let me throw this seed for thought into your brains, and consider that this guy, Chavez, is very much like a big city Mayor in any part of the world who knows how to play the power game and that the essential solipsism of any political actor is not completely or necessarily the moral issues of right and wrong, but what is most insightful about characters on the stage of politics is that they use any prop available on the stage to consolidate their access to power.

So while you rush to embrace those who stand up to the Amerikan Goliath, beware that sin lives on both sides always and the images are cleverly designed.

Time will tell whether you are right or wrong in your assessment of Chavez.
back to the theme of this thread. I would think Chavez knows very clearly the level of poverty in his country, and I'm sure that he understands that the only way to a more stable economy is to stimulate growth of the middleclass. He will only be able to do that quickly by educating the masses and redistributing wealth. This flies in the face of the U.S. government and their globalization aim of unfettered corporate power. Unfortunately Chavez will be unable to withstand American backed insergency. Remind anyone of the brief period of Chilean democracy prior to Pinochet?
Reverend Blair
Chavez is very aware what happened to Allende. I think the difference is that he plans to withstand the coming American onslaught.

Right now the US is preoccupied with keeping the US public from realizing how bad Iraq really is and how bad Bush really is. There will likely be a Democratic Congress after 2006, followed by a Democratic president and a Republican Congress in 2008.

At the same time, the United States has little or no support in the world.

Chavez is using that time to arm himself and to build relationships with other South American leaders. He's buying guns and planes from the Russians, who also want oil.

He might just pull this off.
It is important not to be guilty of what you accuse.

Chavez is not near the savior of the poor you proclaim.

Long after he disappears you will see the poor be poor, the needy still needy.

He needs your point of view, just as Saddam and Milosovec and Kim of N.Korea do.

Your understanding is no more higher in the moral ethical universe than the kneejerk rightwingers in Amerika.

To embrace an unknown, unknowable quantity in the person of Chavez simply because he opposes the Amerikan Goliath can only be described as a kneejerk reaction.

It's the same way you have evaluated Fidel Castro as a real darling of the intellectual thoughtful people without any comprehension of his deadly faults.
Funny every country that does not agree or fall into line with what the US wants them to do is an enemy.

The truth is Bullies (America) don't like being stood up to. You will start to see less and less countries submitting to America's whims. America with "W" at the helm is starting to really get out of control.
Free Thinker
Quote: Originally Posted by no1important

Funny every country that does not agree or fall into line with what the US wants them to do is an enemy.

The truth is Bullies (America) don't like being stood up to. You will start to see less and less countries submitting to America's whims. America with "W" at the helm is starting to really get out of control.

I wouldn't say out of control exactly, but alliences between other nations are being formed to create ginormous super powers, they won't be much to worry about soon enough.
Reverend Blair

Chavez is not near the savior of the poor you proclaim.

I never claimed him to be a saviour, are the one using that word. He is a leader who may or may not succeed.


Long after he disappears you will see the poor be poor, the needy still needy.

For now he using his country's natural resoures to ensure that those poor and needy are also educated and healthy enough to work, even as hi institutes land reforms so they can farm and expands industry so they can work. It isn't a panacea, but the situation is getting slowly better.
That's the story you have.

Things are getting better.

Well I'll give you this: America screwed up down there so badly that the US needs to just take their lumps and walk away and actually sit by while Chavez does everything in his power to use us as a scarecrow to consolidate more power and fudge the stats like Castro did concerning the greatest health system in the world where it's people really aren't so healthy in body, spirit or economically.

Just watch.

Especially in the vicinity of this growing blindspot you have.
Reverend Blair
That is the story I have. I've also seen the pictures of the poor rising up to support Chavez. Those pictures were not carried in the mainstream American press, although they cover the protests of the wealthy against Chavez. I don't give much credence to people who show up to protests in Jags, especially when the main reason for their protest is to keep others from being able to afford roads to walk on.

Even your take on Castro is mightily twisted. The fact is that there is better medical care and education in Cuba than in the rest of the region. It is available to everyone.

Much more would be available without the USA's crippling sanctions as well. That might even undermine Castro's support in Cuba.

The fact is that there is better medical care and education in Cuba than in the rest of the region.

That is true. My grandma recieved a concussion while she was there and other than the "wild" ambulance ride the care was awsome. The doctor even came to the hotel she was at twice after she left the hospital to check up on her.

Cuba does have good doctors and it is an American lead myth they do not. America's governments spewls a lot of untruths about Cuba, yet they have a military base there. Sounds hypocritical to me.
True. I've read a lot about the Cuban health system and it was favorable to Cuba, even God forbid, in American newspapers.

Contrary to Canadian policy so afraid of Fox News it deems al Jazeera more legitimate. Both are, but not according to the all-knowing zeitgeist north of the border.

Al Jazzera (translated as "the island") is very misunderstood often. They have not only been instrumental in showing the terrorist beheadings and messages from al Qaeda but also have been a huge force in debating women's right and questioning the dictatorships of the area.

But they are no more accurate or inaccurate than Fox News is, and it was very bizzare and very controlling of Canadian culture which prides itself as open-minded to initially permit one and not the other.

Equally the zeitgeist of the world rushes to embrace anything that contradicts America.

Take for example Castro. What a darling he is.
The medical system there is very strong, but none of the blemishes are discussed. Only the good is embraced and held high in the air.

I'll bet none of you know the pitfalls down there, since you've had to do so much work to counter the American machine.
Reverend Blair

I'll bet none of you know the pitfalls down there, since you've had to do so much work to counter the American machine.

Wrong again, Jimmy. Some of us get press releases from Human Rights Watch and Reporters Without Borders as they come out.

The funny thing is that, while they criticize Castro a lot, they also go after your government on a daily basis. Castro is a dictator. What's your excuse?


But they are no more accurate or inaccurate than Fox News is, and it was very bizzare and very controlling of Canadian culture which prides itself as open-minded to initially permit one and not the other.

I see you armed yourself with half the facts again. The CRTC gave the go ahead to al Jazeera with the proviso that any cable company carrying them had to delete anything that may be determined to be against our hate laws. If anything got through the cable company, not AJ would be held accountable. I only wish they would have put the same restrictions on Fox News.

You also don't seem to understand how our system works. We already had two American news networks available in Canada...CNN and CNBC, so Fox was at the bottom of the list. Fox then refused to meet certain advertising standards (they didn't want their ads to be substituted by the cable carrier). That delayed their approval. The same sort of problems are delaying (don't think it's resolved yet) the approval of an Italian sports network but, oddly enough, nobody is trying to say that's for political reasons except for some Italian soccer fans.

Now explain to me how your system got so screwed up that the exposure of a well-aged nipple became a major scandal and Steve Earle was moved to write a song called "F*ck the FCC."

That was a riot.

Think "cartoons characatures."

Hate laws? Man even your fellow Canadians might review that circuitous logic. I wonder if the beheadings were deleted, or the videotapes from the terrorists du jour?


And the "well-aged nipple" ?

Gawd I just color coded my underwear on that one.

Damn you Reverend Blair.

Damn you.


The only thing that made sense was the rules regarding commercials. Other than that everything else you mentioned had an orbit beyond Pluto.
Reverend Blair
Everything I put in there was cited by the CRTC and reported in the press. You know nothing of our hate laws, that is obvious by your inane response. It is apparent that you also knew nothing of the matter you raised. Unfortunately you seem to be choosing to remain ignorant.
Are you for real?
Reverend Blair
Yes. I'm for real. So is what I said.


* Al Jazeera: Arabic-language news and public affairs service

The authorization to distribute Al Jazeera is subject to the broadcasting distribution undertaking (BDU) wishing to offer the service having a condition of licence governing its distribution. The Commission has decided that distributors must record Al Jazeera programming and keep the recordings for a specific length of time. This measure will enable the Commission and licensees of BDUs to verify and assess the context of the programming in the event of any future concerns about abusive comment on Al Jazeera’s programming. The Commission is also requiring that BDUs distributing Al Jazeera not distribute, as part of that service, any abusive comment. Finally, the Commission will allow BDUs to alter or delete the programming of Al Jazeera solely for the purpose of ensuring that no abusive comment is distributed. The Commission found that this condition is necessary to prevent, to the greatest extent possible, the distribution of abusive comment on the service pursuant to the Commission’s statutory responsibility to regulate and supervise all aspects of the Canadian broadcasting system with a view to implementing the broadcasting policy set out in the Act, while at the same time minimally impairing freedom of expression.

CRTC press release
Does "abusive comment" include pictorials of beheadings?
Reverend Blair
No, actually. It refers to hate speech, as defined in Canada's criminal code, in this case generally against Jews.

It is a huge onus to put on a cable carrier.

They should have put the same restrictions on Fox News to deal with the way they attack Muslims and homosexuals.

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