Tuesday, June 06, 2006

What is so scary about Venezuela?

'They' are very busy trying to convince you that Venezuela is the next great Evil of our times. Which is crazy because I thought Venezuela was just full of beauty queens and American white collar criminals fleeing extradition.

The Mainstream Media has been complicit in Bush's orchestrated attempts to portray Venezuela as a threat to the United States. Let us put aside (for now) our well founded fears of invasion by surgically enhanced super beauty bots operating from super secret beauty boot camps. Instead, we offer up today's complicit talking head trying to scare you: CNN's Lou Dobbs. Dobbs' show today had a report about how "strong man" Hugo Chavez has a chance to influence elections in this country due to a company called Sequoia Voting Systems. MMM sounds scary.

According to VoterTrustUSA and the LATimes Sequoia:

"supplied the hardware (converted Olivetti lottery machines) and software used in Venezuela's hotly disputed recall election of president Hugo Chavez in 2004. Despite pre-election polls that indicated Chavez would lose the recall vote by over 55%, he coasted home the victor. Sounds a lot like Georgia in 2002 and Ohio in 2004 and 2005, doesn't it? Of course when you own 28% of the software company that counted the votes, it might help - echoes of Senator Chuck Hagel's "upset" of popular Ben Nelson in Nebraska when Hagel's voting machine company counted over 80% of Nebraska's votes. "

I'd like to make it known that I am not some kind of knee-jerk communist who will defend any socialist at any cost. I have become quite disillusioned with Mr. Chavez, despite his many goodwill acts towards poor Americans. And I don't like it when companies that manufacture and service election machines are part of the political apparatus. [Diebold is a home grown corporation and an example here in America with Republican cronies running it.] I am not a fan of Diebold's or Sequoia's touch screen voting machines, as you probably well know. And I find it deplorable that Chavez would attempt to use these machines.

Given all that I just don't think that Chavez will cut off our oil, invade his neighbors, or attack the U.S. It's quite silly how Chavez and Castro are made into Demi-gods we need to be on the alert for. But that is how the MSM has framed the situation. Even when commenting on big issues like election fraud we are told it is the result of foreign adversaries rather than the internal enemies of democracy.

Chavez is not the cause of policies in the US that allow corporations be they foreign or domestic to have so called 'proprietary rights' over their election code. Chavez may be profiting from our glorious leaders decision to go with 'paperless trails' and touchscreen voting booths, but he can't be blamed for their adoption.

Chavez is often given the Master Status of tyrant or anti-democrat despite many other instances where the MSM does not characterize other leaders with worse records similarly. For instance Russian leader Vladimir Putin is rarely described as a strong-man in the MSM or by Bush. Yet he is engaged in the same kind of questionable anti-democratic processes as Chavez. It is simply disingenuous to insert leader of the Venezuelan people as 'enemy' rather than coming to terms with the many problems to be found in America's democracy.

I'll continue to follow this story and I hope to make my thesis a little more clear and provide a few more examples to illustrate what I think are reactionary elements in our society who use the 'fear' card not to legitimately demonize an anti-democratic leader but as a force to stifle dissent.

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