Touring Utopia

What do liberals really believe in? Togetherness? Fighting oppression? Despite the denials and obfuscations it really is as simple as this: More government; lots more! This is the ideology that animates and inspires the left.

A prime example are the pilgrimages being made by American leftists to see the glorious socialist revolution of Hugo Chavez firsthand.

The visit was just one stop on the group's $1,300 two-week "reality tour" of Chavez's Venezuela, organized by the San Francisco-based NGO Global Exchange. It was a clear sign that Venezuela, much like Cuba in the 1960s or Nicaragua in the 1980s, is fast becoming a destination for foreign leftists. As a diplomatic battle between Venezuela and the U.S. intensifies — with Washington banning any arms sales to Chavez and his government in turn threatening to sell fighter jets to Iran — Americans unhappy with the Bush Administration are eager to witness with their own eyes Chavez's oil-funded socialist revolution.

...Leoncio Barrios, a professor of social psychology at the Central University of Venezuela, says the country is an exotic attraction for left-leaning foreigners because it says it is adopting socialism as a model for the 21st century. Even vendors are capitalizing on the influx of political tourists. They sell Chavez paraphernalia on the streets of Caracas, ranging from hats to talking Chavez dolls. One poster even shows the leader riding a horse next to Jesus Christ. [Gasp! Capitalist activity?]

Although the ministry of tourism does not measure political tourism, it says the number of foreign tourists visiting Venezuela grew by 17 percent between 2001 and 2005, despite political strife and national strikes during that period. "There is something happening here," said Renee Kasinsky, 62, a professor of sociology in Boston. "I went to Cuba when it was 1962, two years after the revolution. And it feels like temporarily the clock has turned back to the '60s and '70s."

Keeping the dream alive

Hugo Chavez is not so much an innovator as he is following a well worn pattern. He has stepped into a niche created for him by half a century of Soviet and leftist propaganda. So many American leftists view him as an avatar of hope for the socialist dream because he seems to be fulfilling the promises that the Soviets let drown.

During the cold war the Soviets engaged in full fledged propaganda war against the United States. A propaganda war that still reverberates today. For instance, those who think of the U.S. as guilty until proven innocent are victims of cold war Soviet propaganda. There are many who have become trapped in this meme.

The problem we have today is precisely this legacy of viewing America as the enemy. For instance, what made Jane Fonda actually sit on an anti-aircraft gun and praise the communist vietnamese while U.S. soldiers were dying in Vietnam? Was it concern for humanity? Or did she really believe in the communist cause?

Was the United States in Vietnam because of imperial capitalist aggression? Are we in Iraq for Oil?

I cherish the memory of the blushing militia girls on the roof of their factory, encouraging one of their sisters as she sang a song praising the blue sky of Vietnam--these women, who are so gentle and poetic, whose voices are so beautiful, but who, when American planes are bombing their city, become such good fighters.

I cherish the way a farmer evacuated from Hanoi, without hesitation, offered me, an American, their best individual bomb shelter while US bombs fell near by. Hanoi Jane

The left has a legacy which many refuse to even admit. The Soviets fully conned and co-opted so many on the left that it boggles the mind and complicates the world we live in today.

On November 21, 1970 she told a University of Michigan audience of some two thousand students, "If you understood what communism was, you would hope, you would pray on your knees that we would some day become communist." At Duke University in North Carolina she repeated what she had said in Michigan, adding "I, a socialist, think that we should strive toward a socialist society, all the way to communism." ~Washington Times July 7, 2000, (Article listing appears in archive here.)

The 12th Imam

After defeating the evil empire, we now have a new enemy bent on making humanity bow to their global hegemony. Except that there is a huge constituency who are still running on the programming of their Soviet forbears: operating on reflexive anti-americanism.

Ask some on the left and they will respond that the war on terror is a fabrication of the Bush administration. Ask President Ahmadinejad and he will tell you that they have very good reason to make nukes; and the end is near.

"Our revolution’s main mission is to pave the way for the reappearance of the 12th Imam, the Mahdi,” Ahmadinejad said in the speech to Friday Prayers leaders from across the country." President Ahmadinejad

And thus the alliance between Chavez and Iran makes perfect sense. So too does the reflexive anti-americanism on display everyday from the left.

Posted by Eric Simonson at May 20, 2006 7:03 PM
Comment #149782

Is it September already?

Posted by: Vincent Vega at May 20, 2006 8:17 PM
Comment #149784

Eric -

You’re right! It all makes sense now… I MUST go to see the utopia that is Venezuela! I have outfitted my volkswagen microbus into an alternatively fueled yaucht (it’s fueled by fire.) I just hope I packed enough American flags to burn to get me there!

Power, my leftist comrades! Keep the faith, and remember to conserve and save so we can buy a really (REALLY) big government when we get there! (The government here has been bloated far past anything we can afford.)

Posted by: tony at May 20, 2006 9:07 PM
Comment #149791

I see you are receiving some well thought out responses Eric.

Keep up the good work!!!

Posted by: bug at May 20, 2006 10:33 PM
Comment #149794

Sounds groovy! I got caught with a huge inventory of hammer and sickle tee shirts when the USSR fell. This could be the perfect chance to unload them! Once there, I hope to land a government job as a bureaucrat; or maybe I will just cut to the chase, and go on welfare.

Posted by: phx8 at May 20, 2006 10:42 PM
Comment #149795

Actually, I have a rather large inventory of Hammer and Sickle, Che, and Grateful Dead t-shirts and everything MUST GO!!

I was hoping to unload these on unsuspecting liberal pilgrims before they left. How many can I put you down for?

Posted by: esimonson at May 20, 2006 10:48 PM
Comment #149796

What is really funny is that, right now, I am wearing a brilliantly colored Grateful Dead tee shirt. Nothing political, just dancing turtles.

Posted by: phx8 at May 20, 2006 10:53 PM
Comment #149803

Eric, the biggest government on record exists now, and it has been grown to this new record size by a Republican President, and Republican Congress which has chosen to ignore the limit on growth which Democrats observed, pay as you go. Republicans tossed that limitation on growth of government out the window and said, hell boys, we have an unlimited credit card called future tax payers. Sky’s the limit.

The spin just don’t fly against this wall of fact, Eric. For all that Republican rhetoric about fiscal responsibility, homeland security, and smaller government, it was to never materialize, making all talk, and no walk. Democrats are at least honest about saying they what they think government should do for folks. I don’t remember Republicans campaigning on tax cuts for the rich, and corporate welfare, and no bid contracts, and social programs like the Rx Medicare bill for 390 billion which damn near immediately after it was passed cost over 1 trillion. Nope, don’t remember Republicans campaigning on any of that, but, they sure as hell brought it all about in a damn quick hurry.

Posted by: David R. Remer at May 20, 2006 11:23 PM
Comment #149804

Boy that Bush Hitler thing sure is eerie. I think Bush is just a wannabe though not the real thing.

Posted by: j2t2 at May 20, 2006 11:25 PM
Comment #149806


You are absolutely correct about that. This President has refused to cut anything. Likewise, Republicans in congress have chosen, so far, to ride the constituent pleasing pork pony. This might explain low polling numbers for the president right now. The base is losing faith.

You may recall my displeasure at aforementioned Medicare boondoggle. Prescription drug benefits are something I expect Chavez supporters to come up with, not Bush.

But there you have exposed another falsehood perpetuated by the left. Bush is a right-winger? Bush doesn’t care what anyone thinks? Just plough ahead with the Republican agenda? Hardly. Bush has been one of the most accomodating Republican presidents with democrats in recent history.

Why would he have Ted Kennedy, for pete’s sake, write his education bill? Pure insanity.

It’s a triangulation strategy that bears little (good) fruit.

Good diversion from my topic by the way.

Posted by: esimonson at May 20, 2006 11:34 PM
Comment #149809

Wow so Bush is a Chavez supporting socialist left wing liberal touring utopia yadayada whatever?

Posted by: j2t2 at May 20, 2006 11:41 PM
Comment #149820

What impresses me about situation abroad with Venezuela, Iran, and other countries is the degree to which geographic determinism affects the successes of governments.

Normally, we would like to think capitalism, socialism, or some political philosophy determines the success of cultures & nations.

Instead, we are seeing the opposite; political ideals are irrelevant, and the only thing that matters are resources within state boundaries.

Commodities have boomed recently. In addition to oil, copper and gold and others have soared north. But because of its impact, most impressive of all has been oil. I believe oil prices have roughly tripled during the Bush administration.

Chavez is democratically elected. The US made the mistake of backing a coup against him, and he will make us pay through the nose for that little indiscretion.

Ahmedinejad has no doubt noticed by now, all he has to do is orate “Death to America” or strongly suggest Jews move to Europe, and the price of oil will jump, generating additional wealth for Iran.

The solution is obvious. Rather than back coups against Venezuela, or invading Iraq, or rattling sabers at Iran, we need to pull the linchpin from the whole constellation of cluster foul-ups.

Immediate conservation. CAFE standards with generous tax incentives and shhh… tariffs… to ensure American automobile manufacturers build the new generation of cars for our country.

Alternative energy now! Withdraw from Iraq, and devote the $2 billion per week that is disappearing down the rathole to developing alternative sources.

It is not even a matter of going green, or enviromentalism, or Global Warming, although many would see that benefit too. This is a matter of national security, plain and simple. Why wait?

Posted by: phx8 at May 21, 2006 12:57 AM
Comment #149847

My mom threw out my Grateful Dead T shirt when I was seventeen, I think the skull freaked her out. I bought a couple more since then, but quit going to their shows shortly after Jerry died.

Eric, you can put me down for a couple of T’s,but could you post them on your website so I may peruse them?

Phx8, Pat Robertson says the turtles are gay.

I believe in Univrsal Healthcare, but want far less government and far less corporate monopoly. Am I a liberal, Eric? My Ouija board is broken.

Why do so called conservatives believe so strongly in a Mussolini type corporate state? I always wondered about that. They are almost religious about it. Why do you bow to such a god as that Eric? Why are you so pro corporate subsidy?

I’ll swear allegiance to the conservative deity if you’d just kick out Mussolini.

Posted by: gergle at May 21, 2006 4:55 AM
Comment #149852

The same old same old one side of the coin argument. During the cold war the Soviets engaged in a full scale propaganda war against America but we didn’t engage in a full scale war against the Soviets. Since the subject of Viet Nam has come up, why were we in Viet Nam? What did Ho ask of America in 1946 and what was our response? What did the pentagon papers have to say about why we were in Viet Nam. Was the United States in Viet Nam because of imperialist capitalist aggression? Did the imperialist capitalists make a hole hell of a lot of money in Viet Nam.

Why has Venezuela elected a socialist government.

Posted by: jlw at May 21, 2006 6:38 AM
Comment #149867

Eric, my comments were right on topic with your article. Your article complains it is the left flocking to ever bigger government. The facts demonstrate clearly, that Republicans in the White House and Congress have been the ones fostering ever bigger government. The Lefties are calling for Pay As You Go, which by comparison, is a very conservative and fiscally responsible approach, abandoned by Republicans.

Republicans being the really big government party, pulled the biggest political hoax ever on the American people, getting them to believe they were actually for smaller government and less debt, deficits, and spending.

With Democrats you know what you are getting. Republicans have proved the only way to know what you will get from them is to expect the opposite of what they say. Not very inspiring!

I thank you though for the integrity in finally admitting your party has led the nation in the wrong direction.

Posted by: David R. Remer at May 21, 2006 9:26 AM
Comment #149868

Just a couple of random comments.

jlw, why does Chavez win in a free election? There’s a large percentage of the population that believes you can vote yourself rich. I have a theory that the bigger portion that the middle class makes of a given country, the smaller that percentage.

As for unloading hammer and sickle t-shirts, Target stores carry a CCCP sweat jacket complete with hammer and sickle. This is a regime that was responsible for the deaths of 100 million people. I just want to ask Target what’s next? An Eva Braun T Shirt? Back packs with a Swastika? After all, Hitler only killed 6 million(for those of you that are humor-challenged, I’m being sarcastic). I digress, maybe those sweat jackets were for the Venezuela Target.

Posted by: alice moore at May 21, 2006 9:27 AM
Comment #149890

Why is it that conservatives do not really understand American liberalism?

The Liberal platform does not specifically call for big governement. That is a conslusion you draw. They really call for responsible and good government.

There is a faction of conservatives who want the federal government to dictate morality in our personal lives. Whether it be a gay marriage admendment, Terri Shavo, Religion in public life or the acceptance of NSA survaliance. Conservatives support government intrusion in our lives.

I do not get the connection between Chavez and Latin American Leftists to American Liberals. They are not the same. It is like comparing American Conservatives to right wing military dictatorships in Latin America. Do any conservatives really support the El Salvadoran death squads to eridicate a leftist socilist movement that resulted in the deaths of 100,000 innocent civilians?

Both liberals and conservatives have supported big government. And right now the biggest government, budget and deficit we have ever seen is under a Republican congress and Presidency.

“Those who live in glass houses shouldn’t throw stones”

But there are important differences of the responsibility we have to our fellow human beings and the role of government in health care, poverty, and other humane issues. This does not neceessarily translate to a bigger government. This is what the debate should be about.

Posted by: Steve at May 21, 2006 11:10 AM
Comment #149901

Steve -

I agree…

“Why is it that conservatives do not really understand American liberalism?”

They assume to understand, and look no further. It’s the first step towards understanding nothing. Or, in the words of a friend: “They know a lot and understand very little.”

Posted by: tony at May 21, 2006 12:11 PM
Comment #149936

Really enjoyed the funny comments in this thread.

“What do liberals really believe in?”

Speaking only for myself, I really believe that all of your posts are hilarious, over-the-top flamebaiting against liberals.

David, good replies. Better than this article actually deserves. You wrote:
“Republicans have proved the only way to know what you will get from them is to expect the opposite of what they say. Not very inspiring!”

No, not inspiring at all. But what you are describing here is the Neocon way. It’s not at all Conservative, and it’s definitely not Liberal. What it is, is nothing but dishonesty and manipulation, which hides a diabolical authoritarian agenda. The wealthy Republicans who support them fully understand this, and they approve of what they’re doing. The trouble is, up until recently, it has worked very well on unwary working-class conservatives, but thankfully, all the polls are now showing us that the Neocons trickery has finally lost their support.

Posted by: Adrienne at May 21, 2006 3:29 PM
Comment #149948

Gay dancing turtles? Well, you know, they are Merry-land Terrapins!

I think my wife would pay for me to go to Venezuela if it meant selling that shirt. Throw in selling my favorite Skagway tee shirt, & I would be on my way…

Posted by: phx8 at May 21, 2006 4:37 PM
Comment #149975

Alice: Why have the conservatives won control of the government in The United States? Could it be because a percentage of the voters didn’t realize they were voting themselves poor.

Posted by: jlw at May 21, 2006 7:08 PM
Comment #149998


I’ve had about enough of the rediculous accusations from the right against the left.


That’s a fact. The silly finger pointing has got to stop. The dems are the ONLY party to actually EXHIBIT PRACTICALLY WORKING ECONOMIC INITIATIVES AND FISCAL RESPONSIBILITY. That’s a fact. The republicans never even came close.

The vietnam war lasted 11 years. We just passed the expense mark with the Iraq war in less than half the time and that’s even after adjusting for inflation! Do you feel safer, now?

So can the B.S. This G.O.P. has already lost the economic philosophy battle. To pretend you are a fiscal conservative, or that you desire small government, and still call yourself a republican these days is the absolute height of irresponibility and hypocrisy. No two ways about it. If the philosophy itself is truely what appealed to you, you would call yourself a DEMOCRAT by now. But, it is the label you are loyal to, not ideas or initiatives or practical solutions that have already been tried and succeeded. So, like the teenage girls of the early eighty’s who blindly invested in “Gucci” purses because they liked to be seen with the name, you are getting a shallower view and an inferior product. Teenage girls eventually ditched the plastic purse fad, will you be as wise as those teenagers? We have yet to see.

But in the meantime, at least have the decency to check whether your view is aimed at a mirror before you start hurling wild accusations at what you mistakenly think is the image of another that you are seeing. Clearly you are not recognizing yourself at all, much less others.

Posted by: RGF at May 21, 2006 9:41 PM
Comment #150001

For those who want to see how the republicans won the LAST TWO TIMES,

This makes WATERGATE look silly and pointless!
View this, and after you ponder why this very real testimony never made the media, ask yourself whether you still believe we have a ‘liberal’ bias in the media in this country! Ha!

Posted by: RGF at May 21, 2006 9:54 PM
Comment #150004


Instead, we are seeing the opposite; political ideals are irrelevant, and the only thing that matters are resources within state boundaries.

I disagree. Many resource poor nations are quite rich. Japan for instance. The ‘resource wars’ theory of political ideology is more akin to colonialism or mercantilism

Posted by: esimonson at May 21, 2006 10:19 PM
Comment #150014


I believe in Univrsal Healthcare, but want far less government and far less corporate monopoly. Am I a liberal, Eric? My Ouija board is broken.

Why do so called conservatives believe so strongly in a Mussolini type corporate state? I always wondered about that. They are almost religious about it. Why do you bow to such a god as that Eric? Why are you so pro corporate subsidy?

I’ll swear allegiance to the conservative deity if you’d just kick out Mussolini.

The problem is that any solution that presupposes that the state is the proper provider of medical services is in fact the Mussolini type corporate state. Have you done any research into the fascist state of Mussolini and what corporatism actually means as a concept or are you just going by the topical accusations of others?

What distinguishes Universal Healthcare from fascism? If what you believe in is the marriage of state and business you are in fact a fascist. Not a liberal. Of course if we wanted to confuse everyone we could trace the history of these words semantically. Technically I am a liberal in the classic sense of the word. But meanings change.

This is a pet peeve of mine because it is a fundamental misunderstanding not only of the semantics of the words but of the concepts themselves.

i.e. Universal Healthscare is Fascism

What Mussolini did was create national monopolies. Contrast this with the definition of fascism (from a leftist point of view) as being privatization. Mussolini wanted to create industry syndicates that would be part of the state.

Historically, corporatism or corporativism (Italian corporativismo) is a political system in which legislative power is given to civic assemblies that represent economic, industrial, agrarian, and professional groups. Unlike pluralism, in which many groups must compete for control of the state, in corporatism, certain unelected bodies take a critical role in the decision-making process. These corporatist assemblies are not the same as contemporary business corporations or incorporated groups. wikipedia

You may not be aware that FDR attempted to do precisely the same thing as Mussolini. That in fact a member of FDR’s cabinet praised Mussolini’s model of fascism. That in fact FDR tried to create a form of American Fascism along with the New Deal. Hmm. Something to think about.

Please read my previous post covering this very interesting topic: Left wing fascism

Posted by: esimonson at May 21, 2006 10:59 PM
Comment #150018


Eric, my comments were right on topic with your article. Your article complains it is the left flocking to ever bigger government. The facts demonstrate clearly, that Republicans in the White House and Congress have been the ones fostering ever bigger government. The Lefties are calling for Pay As You Go, which by comparison, is a very conservative and fiscally responsible approach, abandoned by Republicans.

I disagree. Republicans are not advocating or instituting bigger government. They have allowed spending to continue increasing. This is not precisely the same thing.

Unfortunately Pay-as-you-go does not mean spending less. It just means not cutting taxes without raising other taxes. This is what democrats mean when they say pay-as-you-go.

Part of the reason spending continues to increase is that there are automatic increases built into the budget. Republicans should reverse this policy or slow the rate of growth even more. Which if you may recall is what Democrats called trying to starve children and the elderly. —slowing the rate of increase for programs is actually a CUT in Democratic definition.

re: off topic. It’s off topic because saying Republicans are hypocrits does not prove that liberals are NOT for bigger government.

Posted by: esimonson at May 21, 2006 11:36 PM
Comment #150031

Although Japan is relatively poor in natural resources, they jealously guard what resources they possess. For example, Japan is one of the most heavily forested nations in the world. They do not cut down their own trees; instead, the Japanese pay other countries to cut down their tropical rain forests, and the Japanese import the wood. It is, in fact, a form of colonialism/mercantilism.

Another interesting bit of trivia: although Chavez faces one of the most adversarial medias in the world, he enjoys a 70% approval rating. Bush enjoys a distinctly supportive media owned by GE, Disney, Rupert Murdoch, etc., a media which refused to acknowledge the brillian lampooning by Stephen Colbert, yet Bush receives a 29% approval rating.

Posted by: phx8 at May 22, 2006 1:37 AM
Comment #150056

Eric -

“This is what democrats mean when they say pay-as-you-go.”

So, even though out deficits and budgets are skyrocketing - lead by a REP controlled Congress and White House, it still comes back to being somehow the DEMs fault?

But… but… but… come on, face the facts. These promise but they do not deliver. Corrupt government officials, no-bid & bribed government contracts, invasion of privacy… what exactly does it take to be considered BIGGER government? (Oh yea, costs more too…)

Posted by: tony at May 22, 2006 6:52 AM
Comment #150080

This back and forth and finger pointing about who spends more or favors bigger government; Republicans or Democrates is silly. There is a bigger issue here that both sides need to learn and address.

The political institution of Washington is corrupt. Power, money, greed, closed door deals, K-Street lobbyists, Tom Delay, eramarks and pork are all part of the process. The problem became worse with Delay and K-Street colluding.

There is no question many conservatives belive in smaller government and came to Washington wanting to reduce government. But with a Republican majority it did not happen. They couldn’t break Washington’s culture. They also believe they must cut taxes as well as spend money on their districts to get elected. Everyone suports cutting spending as long as it is not in my district. When you add the war on terror to the cost, you have run away spending and huge deficits

My take is, if you cut and reduce government, then there is less money for government to spend, less money translates t0 less power to politicians. Who will give up their power?

This is so much a part of Washington that it will take some truly courageous, altruistic and magnamous politicians to change it. Or we the People had enough and vote them out and insist on true reform.

Liberals should not be so naive as to believe that Democrates in a similar position wouldn’t behave the same.

So conservatives please stop this nonesense of blaming liberals for big government. You have been so brain washed by right wing rhetoric that you rfuse to look at things more objectively and honestly. You need to separate your conservative principles from the Republican party and Washington culture.

Posted by: steve at May 22, 2006 9:03 AM
Comment #150088


I suspected you would catch that!! He He!! It was just me using your technique to arouse a response.

You presume that I want the government to administer Universal healthcare. I don’t. Look at the Republican fiasco of Medicare part D. I want a true free market. I would propose a market, much like the Stock Market, with rules of disclosure. What we now have is a state/corporate oligopoly. You cannot be in medicine without government approval, and you cannot access real medical info without government approval. The AMA does litle oversite and the FDA is a political football. There needs to be a real pooling of patients, not the current farce of skimming the healthy patients and leaving medicare to tend to the truly sick. That amounts to a government subsidy of Insurance and and Medicine in general. Hospitals, Drugs, Doctors, Nurses need to be evaluated, much as the greatly touted school voucher system professes to do, and publicised. You want to be in medicine, then you have a duty to serve the public. Trust me, only the crooks will go broke. Then we have a free market without government subsidizing certain segments. What we have now is worse than Mussolini’s corporatism, we have a decentralised hog trough. Our respect for doctor’s is blinding us to true theivery.

I agree there were segments of FDR’s policies that were stupid. So were some of Hoover’s. The reality, that you never seem to want to admit, is that we need responsible and honestly free markets with safegaurds, which are mixture of socialism and capitalism. Raw capitalism has to be moderated to avoid it’s sometimes anti-social character. It’s the same reason we have Stop loss brakes on the Stock Market. The problem I have with many so called conservatives is they simply do not see any kind of corporate responsibility to society as a conservative value. There WAS a reason that states required corporations to be chartered and Trusts became the target of Anti Trust legislation. It’s time we began to enforce those charters and trust laws. Do we really need pro-ball? Does it really benefit society by being a protected trust? Is that a conservative value? Truly reforming healthcare, like a reform of Major League Sports, is not a popular concept. It will require questioning some supposed conservative and protected aspects of the industry. If we want to be a truly conservative society we must look at the entire way the system is constructed. Ignoring the way medicine is being administered is not being conservative of human values.

Posted by: gergle at May 22, 2006 9:30 AM
Comment #150182

Less tourism, more emigration!

Posted by: David C. at May 22, 2006 1:44 PM
Comment #150188

I have enjoyed all the “Republicans spend a lot so we aren’t really Socialists” diatribe, but let’s be real. The Democrats in this country are now Socialists. Republicans are now Democrats. Excluding the odd Conservative or Libertarian in gov’t, EVERYONE in gov’t is a leftist. Welfare, Medicare and Social Security are all socialist programs. Begun by Democrats, grown by Republicans. Soon the recipients of these programs will outnumber the people who actually fund them (If that hasn’t already happened). At that point human nature will take over, and there will be NO incentive to work hard, risk capital or achieve. Why bother when you have to turn around and give it to socialist parasites? Read a little history fellas, every wealthy country or empire through history that followed this path, is gone. Just dusty memories.

Ben Franklin said it best when asked what kind of government the Founding Fathers gave us:
“A Republic, if you can keep it”.
Apperently, we can’t.

Posted by: David C. at May 22, 2006 2:00 PM
Comment #150233

Chevaz has a lot of oil,we want it all without much toil,while tempers seem to flair towards boil,Government acts like our wallets Moyel.

Posted by: jblym at May 22, 2006 3:33 PM
Comment #150382


…unless you consider who it was that actually put together a sucessful economic policy, cut government spending and created a SURPLUS!!! duh.

Please don’t offer groudless rhetoric unless you can back up the claim.

Posted by: RGF at May 22, 2006 9:27 PM
Comment #150402

>>I know that the Bush administration has launched a campaign to demonize Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez. If you believe that band of liars in Washington, then by all means continue to enrich the rich who put that crowd in office. Their fortunes and future depend on Americans being saps and suckers for cheap propaganda.

You have a choice. You can help pay for corporate jets and obscene bonuses, or you can buy from Citgo and help provide medical care, food, housing and education for the poor of Venezuela.

Hugo Chavez has never said he hated the United States, much less threatened it. He is opposed to U.S. foreign policy in Latin America, and with good reason. He said down with the U.S. ‘empire.’ I’m for that. We should abandon imperialism and return to our republican roots. The empire and the United States are not the same thing. U.S. foreign policy has one goal: To make the world safe, comfortable and profitable for America’s largest multinational corporations.

Last winter, Chavez and Citgo made low-cost heating oil available to Americans in the Northeast. Do you object to that?

He has traded oil to Cuba for doctors and nurses to set up health clinics for the poor. Do you object to the poor receiving medical care?

He has set up a chain of grocery stores that sell food to the poor at cost. Do you object to the poor eating?

He has declared war on illiteracy and is providing education for people who previously had no hope of escaping ignorance. Do you think the poor should remain barefoot and illiterate?

When the Bush people publicly insult Chavez, he publicly insults them back. That is how a man should be. It was obscene for the arrogant Donald Rumsfeld to compare Chavez to Adolf Hitler. There is nothing, absolutely nothing, in the man’s life, words or deeds that remotely relates to Hitler. Hitler, however, does share one characteristic with Rumsfeld. Hitler thought he knew better than his generals how to fight a war, and like Rumsfeld, he was dead wrong.

I’ve yet to find anything he has said, done or proposed to do that any decent American could object to.

Chavez is not a dictator. He was elected. He survived a coup and he survived a recall election, both of which you can bet the CIA had a hand in. He’s human. He might fail. But he has shown by his actions and his words that his intentions are much more decent than George Bush’s.

Buy Citgo. That way, you will make not only the big oil companies mad, but George Bush as well. And don’t forget that Citgo has 14,000 American employees.

Exerpts from an editorial I read recently. I found it quite entertaining and educational…

Posted by: Marysdude at May 22, 2006 10:36 PM
Comment #150444

David C.

I have enjoyed all the “Republicans spend a lot so we aren’t really Socialists” diatribe, but let’s be real. The Democrats in this country are now Socialists…..

Let’s get real… your spew is total bull. Got any facts or just rant?

Posted by: gergle at May 23, 2006 3:45 AM
Comment #150705

Eric, the Homeland Security and DoD and Pentagon, and the Medicare bureaucracy, are just two examples of Republicans growing the size of government. Government employees under the Republican rule far outnumber government employees under Democrat rule.

Republicans are the party of government growth. Their strategy is not apparent for they offer no rational or logical explanation save for 9/11 and Katrina and such. But, the fact is, Republicans in control of government have all the appearances of following the strategy of bankrupting the country while enriching capitalists, such that when the economy buckles, the great masses of poor people will be grateful to lick some rich boots for a bit of bread and soup. Its a more rational explanation than what the GOP leadership is offering.

Posted by: David R. Remer at May 23, 2006 9:40 PM
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