Pat Robertson and Venezuela (08/25/05)

The above photo is from Maiz Rebelde article,  writes how it  ” provides pesticide-free and affordable food for people for the  San Francisco Independent Media Center.

On Monday, August 22, televangelist Pat Robertson seemed to call for the assassination of Victor Chavez, president of Venezuela.  I don’t watch the 700 Club, but here is a transcript from the CNN Live report which aired the next day.

We have the ability to take him out, and I think the time has come that we exercise that ability.

Given the United States administrations’ record of destablizing  governments set me on a search of the internet to find out some more about Chavez.  Here’s what I found. 

First read this quote today…

Marcela Sanchez, “Dealing with the Good and Bad Hugo Chavez” in today’s Washington Post:

The success of democracies in Latin America hinges on the ability of their economies to reduce poverty and inequality, the true source of resentment and instability. Chavez’s impact can go either way — at times increasing instability, at times reducing it.

Watch everyone laugh at Pat Robertson…

Watch “Pat Sounds” on Jon Stewart  or check out Al Franken.  But I had to wonder why they and their guests were  only ridiculing Robertson for the assasination part, rather than the dictator part.  

Read a little about what’s been going on in Venezuela… 

The people of Venezuala originally elected  Chavez president  in 1998  for a five-year term. Of 76.12 percent of the counted votes, Hugo Chavez won 2.87 million, representing 56.34 percent of the counted votes, as compared to 2.02 million, or 39.59 percent, for Henrique Salas, his close challenger, according to the Xinhua News Agency.  Since then he has been re=elected after a new constitution in 2000, survived a coup and a recall.  He invited the  The Carter Center in to help from 2002 to 2005, which in its final  report reiterated that it had “noted, on numerous and frequent occasions, the remarkable democratic culture of the nation, as well as the continuous effort to privilege the roads of dialogue and cooperation in order to overcome the deep divisions.”

Then wonder why that’s not in the media…

 One of the most interesting articles was by Mark Weisbrot writing “Venezuela’s recall: The other side of the story” in the  the 9/29/03 International Herald Tribune.  Comparing Bush’s policy towards Iraq (and we know what a mess that is),  he wrote,

 Now there is another example of the triumph of misinformation, which  not coincidentally  again concerns an oil-rich country where the U.S. government seeks ”regime change.”  Venezuela. This time, however, it is not a dictatorship but a democracy that is under attack.

He noted the skewed media coverage in the U.S. and ended  with the suggestion that, “Those who want to hear the other side of the story  or even get a rough idea of what is actually going on  had better be prepared to spend some time digging around on the Internet.*

Weisbrot is the co-director of the Center for Economic and Policy Research.  He can be reached at weisbrot@cepr.net .

 

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