Sunday, 4 October 2009

Venezuela's murders and fighting poverty according to Chávez

Right now Hugo Chávez, is forcing all radio and TV stations in Venezuela to broadcast his message, as he does for hours every week.

He is saying he swears "on his life that we (i.e. he) will defeat poverty by 2019". He also says old parties AD and COPEI won't ever come to power again in Venezuela. It is interesting he says this about parties that were - although very corrupt and inefficient - at the very least as democratic as Hugo's party. He does not say his family was in the COPEI party before he carried out his bloody coup attempt in 1992 against a democratically elected government (at a time there was no possible reelection).

Chávez says the opposition will never come back to power because it has no proposals. I wonder what Sarah Wagenknecht and other European deputies from the far left have to say about this.

He doesn't say that when his government came to power the price of the oil barrel was $12 and it had been very low for over a decade. He does not say the average income for higher oil prices in Venezuela is this year still over 300% that of 1998 (in 2008 over 1000%), which means a lot for a country where 90% of foreign revenues comes from oil and where almost everything is imported. He would not say this as people would do the maths and they would realise his government has just given crumbles to them and he has reserved the best for the red boliburguesía. He does not say Venezuela stopped taking part in open evaluation programmes of education when he came to power. The man who told Bbc journalist Lustig in 2004 that he had dramatically reduced crime in Venezuela does not say his government stopped sending data about the murder rate to United Nations in 1992.

So, he definitely does not say the murder rate, which affects mostly the poor, has risen from 19 murders per 100000 in 1998 to over 70 murders now, more than in any other country in Latin America including Mexico.

Here you have the updated murder statistics for the Carabobo state since 2005 . Things are similar or worse in other regions of Venezuela. I just take the statistics of that region because it is easier to collect the murder numbers from Notitarde, a newspaper in that state that has a working search function. Notitarde started to publish all murders per municipality in 2006, so from then on you see a different colour for each region of that state. It is impossible to make them up. They write down the names of the victims, the ages, often the pictures...and you can just go to the morgues in the region, mortuaries that are all the time full.

The Venezuelan police has more agents working as bodyguards protecting chavista politicians than on the streets trying to protect people like you and me. I have already written that even according to official statistics a Venezuelan policeman is 150 TIMES more likely to be a criminal than the average Venezuelan citizen (officials provided the basic numbers, they just did not do the maths). It seems the only people they protect are high ranking chavista officials. I suppose they have to. Venezuelan "socialist deputies" earn net more than euro-deputies whereas a normal Venezuelan teacher cannot live from her salary alone. Now you can figure out how the president of Venezuela wants to defeat poverty.

PS: Please, if you haven't done so, it would be great if you answer the two questions on the right: what is your mother tongue and what topics you want to read more about.

PS2: For an update of the government's attacks on democracy, always go here.

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