Just as it is in Cuba, the Revolution in Venezuela is not about the people but about consolidating power and ensuring the country’s elitist rulers maintain their iron grip on all facets of society. The infamous Fidel Castro once said: “Within the revolution everything, outside the revolution nothing.” In other words, only that which benefits the ruling elite is acceptable. Everything else is punishable by prison and even death.
VenEconomy: Does the Venezuelan Revolution Even Care?
From the Editors of VenEconomy
What the Venezuelan Revolution cares about today — always has and always will — is the “Revolution” itself. Those who thought that what motivates the Revolution is the people and their well-being can forget about the whole deal.
Officials tirelessly repeat against those opposing the regime that “more revolution” is all there is through thick and thin; against the Constitution and the will of the people; against morals, principles and the most basic rights of citizens; a Revolution that is based on corruption, incompetence and incapacity; a Revolution that doesn’t care about Venezuelans despite the dire situation of starvation, basic needs and life itself. Rain or shine, the important thing here is that the process keeps moving forward, takes hold and lasts for centuries to come – and way beyond.
This is the “revolutionary principle” of “loyalty above all” that Nicolás Maduro, Diosdado Cabello, Francisco Ameliach, Tareck El Aissami and other top government officials are resorting to in the wake of a rebellion within their own chavismo after controversial public letters and tweets by strongmen of the Hugo Chávez era such as Jorge Giordani, Temir Porras, Héctor Navarro, Elisa Osorio, Víctor Álvarez and Rafael Isea revealed the degree of deterioration and rottenness in Venezuela’s socialist process.
Neither Maduro, nor Cabello, nor Ameliach, nor El Aissami nor others have denied allegations of corruption, or of excessive public spending and investment in the so-called “Street Government Plan” without any kind of planning as pointed out by Giordani in his letter. Neither have they rejected claims by Giordani on the lack of leadership from Maduro nor have they given any explanation on the French advisors hired by the Government which has no idea who they are.
The base argument for rejecting criticism and not sending the culprits to a disciplinary tribunal — and straight away and with no excuses — is that loyalty and allegiance to the “Revolution” are more important than criticism.
That is to say, automatic loyalties regardless of whether the “partner” is a crook taking advantage of the public purse for his or her own benefit. But, this is a truism that should not come as a surprise to anyone.
Chávez made it clear what the revolutionary priorities were at a convention center in the city of Maracaibo, Zulia state, in April of 2007: “It doesn’t matter that we walk around naked. It doesn’t matter that we do not have anything to eat. What is at issue here is to save the Revolution….” Or when in March of 2012, only a few months before colon cancer put an end to his life, Chavez called for allegiance to the Revolution from Cuba “regardless of its multiple failures and the discomfort it causes.”
It wouldn’t be strange, either, that Giordani, Navarro and others are trying to shrug off their responsibility for the disaster.
But what is indeed strange is that these revolutionaries in rebellion are demanding the same rights they have denied their political adversaries over the past fifteen years: Today they are demanding the right to free speech, to opinion and criticism; are asking to be heard and spaces for the debate of ideas; are rejecting intolerance, bigotry and the harsh sanctions against both Giordani and Navarro that “violate the due process.”
These revolutionaries seem to be ignoring they are getting a taste of their own medicine. The absence of those rights is intrinsic to that “revolution” they were helping to build until recently, and that for disagreeing with the hegemon today hundreds of Venezuelans are in exile, prison, have practically stopped living or are subject to spurious trials for treason to the homeland and for selling their souls to the “Empire.”
And while the Government is investing time and energy seeing what to do about the rebellion within its own ranks, the spiral of inflation, shortages, disinvestment, corruption and violence continues to wreak havoc in Venezuela.
VenEconomy has been a leading provider of consultancy on financial, political and economic data in Venezuela since 1982.