Sneak Peek

 We’ll continue Monday with our next segment of Venezuela : Down The Rabbit Hole , “The Supremes”, but let’s begin today with something from the news feed that fits well with this. In a report to the UN Human Rights Council the Law Society gives us a look at something we’ll delve into in detail next week. The headliner was “Key Statistics On Lack Of Judicial Independence In Venezuela”

 In this week’s “Blatant Disregard” segment we referred to the TSJ, Venezuela’s Supreme Court, as Chavista’s rubber stamp. Their rulings make it clear that they view Venezuela’s constitution as whatever Maduro says it is. The Law Society tells us the following :

 2019 – 85% of judges didn’t have a permanent position.One had 29 positions in 14 years.

 2020 – 881 provisional judges were appointed and 91 were removed by the Judicial Commission in 14 years.(not exactly a model of consistency, unless consistency is “you will consistently be removed if you don’t rule as we say”)

 Since the TSJ was created (Chavez rewrote the constitution) only 7 of 84 judges have served their full term.

 Since Dec.6,2015 when the opposition won a super majority (before disqualifications) the TSJ has issued 145 decisions to prevent the National Assembly from functioning.

 From 2000 – 2020 Venezuela’s Supreme Court issued 30 judgements that directly interfere with legal professional associations.

 Each of 33 judges appointed by the National Assembly in 2017 have been persecuted by state agents.

 For those of you late to the party, Nicolas Maduro has been ruling by decree since he took power in late 2013 under emergency powers granted him by the overwhelmingly Chavista National Assembly at the time. According to the constitution (as we said earlier, rewritten by Hugo Chavez) those powers must be reauthorized by the National Assembly every 60 days. Until the opposition’s landslide electoral victory in 2015 the AN (National Assembly) renewed those powers faithfully every 60 days by the Chavista led assembly. When the opposition gained control of the AN Maduro had the new assembly disqualified by the TSJ (supreme court) so he no longer bothers with their approval. He continues to grant those emergency powers to himself and it’s upheld by the TSJ. So, he has operated under a “state of emergency” since taking power hence when there is a real state of emergency it’s now classified as a “state of alarm”. It’s worth noting that although he has ruled under a perpetual “state of emergency” for years he denied there was an emergency in Venezuela. Got it?

 In another legal related item from the news feed we have a group of lawyers and members of civil society asking to include in the negotiations between the regime and the opposition a National Constituent Assembly that leads to reforming the nation. As we saw in “Blatant Disregard” a National Constituent Assembly is allowed under the constitution but it must be ratified by referendum, a step Maduro didn’t bother with when he installed his ANC (constituent assembly).

 In a piece that shows how the Chavistas conduct their affairs Reuters reports that the Venezuelan government did an oil for food swap and then charged the company that set up the deal with criminal charges. As the saying goes “That’s how they roll.”  They went on to say that PDVSA,the state owned oil company, has replaced it’s major clients with a series of mysterious, recently formed companies primarily in Mexico and Russia. These guys operate more like money launderers than the world class oil company they once were.

 BNN Bloomberg reports that the deal on the refinery in the Dominican Republic that we covered earlier this week was financed with Venezuela Government Bonds (you know,the ones they defaulted on a while back) and the bonds were valued at 24 cents on the dollar.

 As far as how the economy is functioning under 21st Century Bolivarian Socialism we’re not exactly taking a bold leap into the future. Yes folks, the barter system is back in Venezuela.We’re taking a bold leap back a couple of thousand years. For a while now due to hyperinflation, power outages, and lack of reliable internet connection people have been paying for food,gasoline, even trips to the dentist using produce instead of currency or credit/debit cards. FYI, before I left it’s wasn’t uncommon to see people giving the gas station attendant a few bananas for a tank of gasoline.

 What would our third world dispatches be without an item on the electoral council. This relates directly to the next round of negotiations between the regime and the opposition regarding holding free and fair elections (as well as other issues like,oh I don’t know, human rights violations). Leading up to the first round of meetings in Mexico the regime made a virtually meaningless show of good faith regarding the CNE (electoral council). They allowed two opposition members spots on the five person board. It’s meaningless because Chavismo still retains the other three and the board makes decisions by simple majority so the Chavistas still do as they please.

 So in the interest of “fair play” the CNE said they would allow previously barred political parties to field candidates on the ballot for the upcoming parliamentary elections in November. What was still unclear was if previously barred individual candidates would be allowed on the ballot. Well, in a much delayed decision, the CNE finally had to make a ruling regarding eligibility and here it is. To nobody’s surprise, politicians previously barred from running for office will not be reinstated. So how’s that for fair play…the previously barred parties will be reinstated but their candidates will not.

 In a related matter, the Inter-Parliamentary Union (IPU) has dispatched delegates to meet with 2015 and 2020 deputies regarding attacks on over 100 2015 (opposition) deputies. They will also meet with people from Chavismo and the now disbanded ANC.

 And in medical news we have Dr. Marino Gonzales saying that Venezuela is the only country in the Americas without reliable vaccine figures. Also, that 70% vaccinations by September figure the regime has been putting out there (currently standing at under 10%) has been pushed back to November. They still won’t make it.

 We also have four new cases of Black Fungus in Venezuela. Yikes again!

 In environmental news we have the Coordinator of the Marine Biodiversity Center  informing us about a new oil spill in Lake Maracaibo coming from an onshore facility.

 Telesur reports another “report” has been submitted to the ICC (International Criminal Court) by the Chavistas stating the sanctions by the US are crimes against humanity. Another day another piece of fiction by the Chavistas in an attempt to counter all the legitimate reports to the ICC regarding the regime’s human rights violations and crimes against humanity.

 And the hits just keep on coming. BBC reports over 20 people are dead due to flooding in western Venezuela. Then we have Volcano Discovery reporting a 5.2 magnitude earthquake near Maracaibo. Things are getting kinda’ Biblical down in “Socialist Paradise.”

 That’ll do it for this week. We” be back Monday with more recent insanity and our next installment of Venezuela : Down The Rabbit Hole, “The Supremes”

 Have a great weekend everybody!


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