AFP, February 16, 2008: The United States Tuesday welcomed Venezuela's "civic" referendum lifting term limits for the president and all politicians, but urged support for democracy and tolerance in the country.Just what brand of "socialism" is that? One where near total political and economic control of the state resides in the hands of the ruling elite with el Presidente Chavez the main man in charge.
"We congratulate the civic and participatory spirit of the millions of Venezuelans who exercized their democratic right to vote," State Department spokesman Noel Clay told AFP.
Venezuelans on Sunday voted 54 percent in favor of constitutional reform sought by President Hugo Chavez to run for unlimited reelection, in his bid to consolidate his brand of socialism critics compare to Cuba's communism.
Even the very liberal L.A. Times gets it:
Editorial:Venezuela just took a democratic step closer to dictatorship. On Sunday, President Hugo Chavez won the right to seek reelection ad infinitum, prevailing in a referendum that eliminated term limits for the presidency and other elected offices. Although the balloting was deemed valid by opposition leaders, who have said they will not contest the results, the victory came about because of Chavez's gross misuse of government funds, government workers and federal facilities for the campaign, and neighborhood enforcers to "persuade" voters to support him. He lost a similar vote 14 months ago, but was clearly determined to become president-in-perpetuity and to have Venezuelans vote until they voted his way.
Conservatives in this country are witnessing a similar power grab as we watch Obama's so-called "stimulus" plan hand out billions to reward liberals, including community organizers like ACORN (the equivalent of Venezuela's neighborhood enforcers). That was matched with calls for the Fairness Doctrine to shut down political opposition and moves for greater state control of the banking and automotive sectors. Last, but not least, are Dem efforts to corrupt the census and make Republicans a permanent minority.
Reward for Socialist "Democracy?" Food Shortages!
And just what has been the reward to the Venezuelan people for all that "democracy" Obama's State Dept. praised? Shortages of everyday staples like milk, eggs, sugar and cooking oil. Shortages we may add, brought about by socialist policies whose stated goal was to protect the poor from price gouging. Much better to starve than pay another bolivar so the kids can have milk.
With Obama's looming control over vast sectors of the U.S. economy (designed to protect the consumer don't you know?) how long will it be before the basics of American life are unavailable at any price?
Ah, but who cares as long as one party state socialism rules!