And so we have come full circle and the man who led the first demonstration against the Chavez regime has been detained, after going into exile, coming back, and deciding to live a full life, stupidly going to a night club, with dyed hair and a full mustache. He will now be charged with treason and rebellion, for the simple fact that he led a strike against the Chavez Government, a right guaranteed under the Bolivarian Constitution of Venezuela under article 97. But of course, this autocratic Government only recalls the rights that are convenient to its objectives and forgets those that are a nuisance to its goals. You see, after all, Ortega is the only man to have clearly and validly won an election during the last six years, a victory which Chavez obviously did not recognize, calling it fraudulent, despite the trouncing Chavez’ candidate got.
But you see, fraudulent is a one way word in Venezuela, where so many words and roads have now become one way: the way of Chavez. It is the one way of this lawless Government where opposition leaders are being charged for simply being at the Presidential Palace in April 2002, but not a single Government official is being charged for those that were ambushed and killed the day before. Where those that did not go that day to the Presidential Palace are being charged for corruption, while the man responsible for the missing US$ 3 billion when he was Minister of Finance in 2002, is rewarded with his second tour in the same position that he is not qualified to hold. And if an opposition leader can not be charged for either, then he can be charged for supposedly shutting down a TV channel. Meanwhile, US$ 1.5 billion was squandered in Vargas state and the man who presided over the waste and the deaths that followed is not even being investigated. Yes, a one way road of corrupt morals and incompetence.
And as poverty continues to rise, the Venezuelan Government gives Cuba 50,000 barrels of oil a day, which does not get paid, under a treaty never approved by the National Assembly as required by law, but the President does not get charged for that either, that would be the wrong road. Meanwhile, 18,000 oil workers who were fired in 2003, have not seen their severance pay, pension fund contributions and savings returned to them and now the same oil company is planning to accuse all 18,000 of them, from humble workers to executives, for damages and simply retain their savings. And this was supposed to be a Government with a human face. All of this, while a corrupt man who presided over the most unethical managing of any electoral process in our history, is named to the Venezuelan Supreme Court, where he replaces a servile Justice who received an outrageous pension seventy times the minimum salary for services rendered to the revolution. Not happy with this, this same man acts like a mafia Godfather before leaving his old position, acting like a true gangster without morals and principles.
Meanwhile, opposition reporters are charged with crimes committed weekly by the President himself, like defamation. Or they are fired by the owners oif the emdia who feel threatened. Other reporters are threatened by the President’s supporters, but they become heroes of the one way revolution. And yes, billions of dollars are also missing from the country’s accounts: US$ 2 billion given to the Development Bank are apparently just unaccounted for. Videos of Government officials unloading guns get no action from the Prosecutor’s office, but hearsay is sufficient to open any investigation against opposition members if it’s supreme leaders whims it.
This week, it also has become the banker’s turn. They are being charged for usury for awarding indexed loans approved by the Central Bank and the Superintendence of Banks, of this same revolutionary Government. Just find an excuse said the leader, and his lackeys and collaborators without scruples found a way and they will continue to do so whenever it is required. But the roads built under the Bolivar 2000 program, which no longer exist because they were washed away by the rains, remain a tribute to the levels of corruption of the Venezuelan military, which remains ignored by the otherwise efficient one way prosecutors.
But not one Government official of the last six years has yet to be charged with anything in a country where ethics, on both sides, are by now almost non-existent. The phantom People’s Ombudsman shows up only to defend the Government, while the Attorney General/Prosecutor acts only on direct orders from the Presidential Palace and the assassinated star Prosecutor, hero of the revolution awarded the greatest honor in the country, turns out to have been involved in a cesspool of corruption right under the nose of the Prosecutor, while thousands in cash and unexplainable property are found in his hands.
Thus, this autocratic and incompetent regime instead of fulfilling the promises of its leader has simply magnified and taken to new levels all of the ills, crimes, distortions, intimidations and disregard for others of the previous administrations. And despite the right wing character of the regime, world opinion lives under the delusion that the poor are doing better under the empty revolution. They are not only doing worse than six years ago, but they fail to ask what this inefficient Government is doing when oil prices are four times higher than when Chavez reached power six years ago. Populism obviously sells. Six long years under a charismatic leader and some people still have hopes, despite the lack of any accomplishments other than the belief that something will be delivered. But as someone said, those promises were good six years ago, but not only have become stale, they are by now simply bullshit. But this is a Government of politics and bullshit, sustained by high oil prices and the corrupt powers that are supposed to defend the people and the law. The same ones that will twist the law to send Ortega to jail, rob the fired PDVSA workers and imprison the opposition, until we turn around that one way streett and fight to win.