Where were you when Hugo Chavez died?

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It's official: Venezuelan president Hugo Chavez has died. In case you wonder; I was just finishing a small effort of my own to make Latin America a better place, writing a legal document to combat the dictatorship era criminal defamation laws we have in Panama.

Chavez, the most outspoken, most democratic and most flamboyant leader to have presided over a Latin American country, hasn't even been buried yet, but the usual extreme right-wing clique is already rejoicing in his passing away.

They are the people who believe Latin American countries should be governed by members of the Narco-Financial Complex, such as Alvaro Uribe, Roberto Micheletti, or our own Ricardo Martinelli, who take their orders from the cartels, the laundromats and the State Department. They are - or want to be - members of the Latin American oligarchic families; the most despicable human specimen I have ever come across anywhere in the world. And believe me, I've been around.

They are the petty gringos who think Venezuela should be just like them, going on foreign wars, killing hundreds of thousands of people around the globe, locking up and torturing dissenters, execute the mentally disabled and anyone else on the president's kill list, give all the money to bankers and spend the rest on military hardware instead of on people - all while consuming massive amounts of food so they can revel in their obesity and donate some money against famine down South.

They are the people who believe that we should indeed preserve those dictatorship era laws - and introduce new ones - so that they can silence us, lock us up, expel us - whatever it takes to protect their criminal rackets. Chavez in Venezuela always made me feel a little bit safer. At least change was possible after all. There would, if all else failed, be a place to go to should these fascists win.

I won't bother to answer their bile with facts. Their vitriol doesn't dignify a reply. It's a sad day for Latin America and for those who want a better world anywhere.

Instead, let's remember Hugo Chavez for whom he really was. A larger-than-life leader, but also a human, with brilliance and flaws, with victories and defeat. And I can't, right now, think of a better way to remember him than by posting that great documentary here, The Revolution Will Not Be Televised, whose makers came closer to Chavez than many and got to live through one of the most gripping episodes of his presidency. Enjoy.

16 thoughts on “Where were you when Hugo Chavez died?

  1. Are you out of your mind ? Chavez democratic ? The same man who closed radios, TVS, put judges in jail because they where critics of his bolivarian craze ? He who gave the Castros millions of $ that were badly needed in Venezuela ? You are right when criticising the USA and the narcos dictatorships that we here know so well. But please don’t glorify Chavez, he was a thief and his “change” was not for the better for his country!

    • I’m sorry, but poverty rates cut in half, the highest human development score in the Americas, and so on – to you that may not count for anything but to me it does. He closed a station that supported and aided a military coup, so what? Venezuela has seen community media spring up like mushrooms everywhere – also unprecedented in the hemisphere. No journalists or whistleblowers are in jail in Venezuela. Even a buffoon like Willy Cochez, a representative of narco money, could freely spout his bile in the Venezuelan media. I don’t think Chavez was some sort of god, but those who opposed him have next to nothing to show for themselves compared to what he accomplished.

    • The singular attack by Ms Taylor on Hugo Chavez is the same mantra or if you wish, meme. It is useless to provide data because I have the feeling Ms Taylor will throw them out the window or deep fry them into oblivion. However, Ms Taylor must remember that “facts first, distortion later.” When the ultra rich, dancing in Miami of course, ruled Venezuela 1850s and on, they were the mattress upon which they went to bed with the Rockefellers, the Vanderbilt, and the whole kit and kaboodle, They sold the country’s natural resources wily-nily; oppression of the people as mandated by their Christ of seems to forget that his “children” have to eat shit, just so that his chosen few could steal, kill, and still lead a flamboyant life right in Caracas. Now comes this Ms Taylor and to present solid arguments instead, goes and attacks Hugo Chavez. The man transformed the relations of South America vis a vis the United States totally. In fact, he clearly demonstrated that the USofA has no policy whatever when it comes to South America, Central America, and North America. But, to obviate the possible accusation that I am using ad hominem artifices, I do recommend that for those interested, research the data and then present it with citations. Plainly, Ms Taylor is a vulgarity more proper among Baboons. That many policies were erratic or difficult to implement is in no manner indicative of the man’s true feelings of standing with the poor. As usual, the rich now have their dogs who bark for them that he was incompetent, yara, yara, yara, and yara. This line of censoring is sponsored in toto by the State Department and the transnational corporations who are drooli9ng to get their hands on that petroleum. But, Ms Taylor, you must remember that when a bitch barks, she does not bite.

      • To Mr. Chifundo, his real name? Bla, Bla,Bla because the others presidents where bad this fact justified what your great man did ? I was not defending them but criticizing the person that stole a province ( Barinas ) for him and his family that are now Stink Rich and his son in law is vice-president and his heir Maduro is ripe ( maduro ) for a Castros like dictatorship… Please wake up nobody is going to believe that this clown was a great man. Venezuelans are poorer now than before and communism will not save them from poverty ( look at Cuba ) !

        • Amarillys, I can’t find one single credible source for the allegation that Chavez enriched himself. You’re just repeating unsubstantiated rumor. Just like your statement that “Venezuelans are poorer now” is in contradiction with every available fact. Even the right-wingers have by now admitted that Chavez was a) hugely popular and b) has had a positive effect on issues like poverty reduction, education, health care, housing etc. etc. You’re of course free to voice your opinion, but it would help if that opinion was based on facts if you want to be taken seriously.

          • A recent article regarding how (well) Hugo Chavez managed the economy:


            Rather contrasting is this quote regarding the US economy:

            bonar : n. 1. a debt instrument backed by the full faith and credit of the latest corrupt US political regime; 2. a share in USA, Inc., a technically bankrupt Enronesque nation whose monetary institutions have been alternately managed by crooks and fools; 3. a currency which will eventually be valued at a rate of $1,000,000 bonars to one barrel of oil; 4. the currency issued by the United States of America, formerly know as the US dollar. See “US dollar.”



            Hyperinflation of the bonar might be gaining momentum:


            Then there’s the issue of US war crimes, committed all over the globe.

            “The greatest crime since World War II has been U.S. foreign policy.” Former US Attorney General Ramsey Clark



          • No hay peor ciego que el que no quiere ver ni peor sordo que el que no quiere oír!

          • I have it from connected Colombian/American sources that Chavez and his family ended up with 17 of the best and biggest fincas in Venezuela……..and theres no doubt that he and his family were living in luxury with swimming pools and jacuzzis, etc in a palace built by some rich dude who he scared away to Panama or Miami…….face it banama, Hugo did at times speak the truth, unike our own b.s.ing puppet of a President, and did do some good for the vast impoverished class of Venez whom nobody else had ever paid attention to……..I give him credit for that………….but Caracas is probly the most dangerous and violent city in the world outside of Baghdad, (thanx to u know who) and who in their right mind wants to go there…….Im traveling in Ecuador at the moment, and now this is a country which is headed in the right direction under intelligent leadership…….lets not get carried away glorifying Chavez, who despite his good intentions, made a huge frigging mess…………….

  2. Lets see who really write this piece of history for History Books on this one!

    Right now in Russia over 68% of the population think Stalin was a great man and the greatest leader of the USSR!

    Their Major reason he saved the USSR from the Hitler and the Nazi’s, the great Patriotic War!

    It does not matter to them that he killed upwards of 8o million of their fellow countrymen or turned the USSR into one gigantic Prison Gulag!

    Stalin ruined their backward economy, commenced major public building projects many have caused irreversible Massive ecological damage ,others have actually endeared the every day life of many citizens of the Soviet Republic.

    WE will just have to wait and see who write what, hence what is the real truth seldom matters in upon their deaths!

    It only matters to those who have the power, the money to create legends, rewrite the lies and the folklore out of nothing but war, oppression , and social injustice!

    If you are/were rich Hugo was the great destroyer of Venezuelan Democracy and freedom(if you can call that democracy before?) !

    To the majority of the Poor he was a saint!

    Now even Mother Teresa Humanitarian Image A ‘Myth,’ New Study Says:

    URL: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/03/04/mother-teresa-myth_n_2805697.html?utm_source=Triggermail&utm_medium=email&utm_term=Daily%20Brief&utm_campaign=daily_brief

    Only time will tell the real fate of his legend???

  3. Hugo Chavez was definitely passionate about social justice, but I don’t think he took the best road to reach that goal. On the long run, socialism has always been detrimental to the people it was supposed to help. Besides that, I dont understand why Chavez hated America with such intensity. By the way, I noticed that countries whose leaders hate the US are most of the times countries where atrocities are commited on a regular basis…

    • Countries where the US is intensely disliked are usually places where the US deploys its crooked foreign policy, kills people, or where the US has propped up a dictatorship or small corrupt elite. Hence, Venezuela.

    • Shanna,

      Your commentary indicates a very misinformed view of foreign affairs.

      A view that is unfortunately, very common. From my experience it is usually the result of a convergence of factors.

      Firstly, and the most pervasively, is a selective and manipulative reporting by the mainstream media in furtherance of the well being of big business.

      Secondly, is the ready acceptance of these manipulations by the vast majority of citizens who live consumptive, comfortable, lawn mowing, car washing lifestyles in the developed and to a lesser extent in the less developing world.

      Thirdly is a complete misunderstanding of the terms capitalism and socialism.

      Chavez’s passion for social justice that, you acknowledge cannot be reached by a means that is agreeable to everyone. Like a vast majority of the consumptive comfortable citizens of the world, you profess a love of social justice and fairness that extends until someone takes a piece of your pie and gives it to the needy. Then you scream socialism, dictator, terrorist, atrocities etc etc.

      Those with a declared concern for the poor, who speak of social justice without cost to them, are more dangerous than the unrepentant wolf who feels no duty to share with anyone. Those barking about social justice and charity have their armies to bite for them.

      As for why Chavez hates the US? The fact that you can ask this question without shame attests to the complete success of the media, or whatever other sources of information you use, to completely substitute a fictional account of foreign affairs for the real world.

      As for socialism damaging those it is intended to help. I suggest that this is a selective view. American Socialism for example has created many successful programs. Rescuing the biggest US banks with huge transfers of public funds, was very helpful to the shareholders. Endless unnecessary wars as social programs for defense contractors distribute huge sums of wealth from the US taxpayers to needy corporations . Unnecessary and extreme prison sentences constitute a very successful social program for the humble owners of private prisons in the US.

      So it would appear, Shanna, that socialism for the rich seems more successful than socialism for the poor, at least in the US. Capitalism seems reserved for the for the poor. The banks suck the warm comforting teet of the socialist breast but their customers, the homeowners,..
      .well all they getis the lower teet of Adam Smith.

      As for countries that hate the US…Most have or will forgive the US. The Americans love the phrase GOD BLESS AMERICA, but in reality more useful for them would be God Forgive America.

    • Ms Carson, exactly which form of socialism are you talking about. Long run? Do you really believe that capitalism is the shinning city on the hill, do you? Capitalism died totally weakened in the Cold War. What we see now in the US most definitely is not Democracy. And in regards to your syllogism without the minor premise, a very pathetic enthymeme, the cause of the problems in Latin America is the United States of America. And within the sovereign spatial area that the USofA controls, the corporations, the banks, the politicians, the stupidity that is taught in schools, the atrocious and willful crime of religion in complete;p and the 56 million w/o health care -Hugo brought health care to the poor, and did it via barter, opening schools, bringing potable water to the poor neighborhoods…I am going to stop here. Who am I to critique the antihistorical position of Ms Carson…perhaps she sees the darkness through a different cosmovision. By the way, Ms Carson, I fought 16 months in the jungles of Cambodia and Laos. I did not run and hide as the many rich did, or the powerful, or the friend of a friend of a white power broker. The days were spent ki9lling or getting killed. And then, we went back to the tents and heard the news of how the blacks were being treated. Hate, you accuse? Their is no more hateful person than s/he who has eliminated the ethical standards that guide a moral life and point their whiteness to attack the hmmmmmm, okay, the nowhiteness.

  4. Sad indeed that Chavez has died. His remark on the smell of sulfur at the UN is likely to become a classic. It was refreshing to see a Latin American head of state who wasn’t a descendant of the religious gang that believed the devil is black and a dark skin color meant “close to the devil and up for abuse / extermination”. Those descendants as mentioned now are involved in narco (and probably more sinister deals), favoring to be lackeys in the empire of war, waste, greed and plunder.

    Those accusing Chavez of socialism conveniently overlook that the US is the most socialist state, but only for big-enough banks and corporations (has to do with campaign “contributions”). Those accusing Chavez regarding “free markets” overlook that the US even threatened France with economic retaliation unless GMO products would be allowed, against the will of the French people. Great example of “democracy” and “free market” no?

    Both the US and the EU subsidize their agricultural production with the result that small producers in developing countries can’t compete. The poor farmers wind up in slums and eventually have to commit crime to make a living while their land is bought up for pennies on the dollar by multinationals to produce basic material for cheap but addictive, unhealthy crap – feeding the global obesity / diabetes epidemic. Scientists warning of the dread caused by the use of glyphosate are either silenced or ignored.

    A head of state, not buying into the myth of eternal heaven and hell (because such contraptions would be equal to perpetual motion machines IOW absolutely impossible) couldn’t have bought into the myths of economic pundits either. Those pundits overlook the fact that many resources are finite, that many renewable resources (like potable water) depend on favorable conditions (climate), and that without vital energy for humans (food and water), even gold loses its value. Hence Chavez invested in the poor, knowing that would ultimately form a solid base, required to mitigate / adapt to the unpleasant truth of a rapidly changing climate and dwindling resources. Soon enough, even those heads of state now despising Chavez will realize the inevitability of land redistribution (to increase food production) and thereby honor him posthumously.

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