Here’s a good one for ya’ from Telesur (government media). They inform us that Venezuela’s Minister For Ecosocialism ratified the Maduro regime’s commitment to the Paris Agreement at the Climate Change Summit in Glasgow. “Actions are addressed from the principles of ecosocialism.” Ecosocialism huh… I must confess, I’ve never heard of that before.But then again, I had never heard of 21st Century Bolivarian Socialism before I was introduced to it by the Chavistas…and what an introduction it was. 21st Century Bolivarian Socialism turned out to be the most destructive force I’ve ever seen unleashed on a country. We’ve watched it destroy basically every aspect of life and society in Venezuela. Now, under the name of “Ecosocialism” 21st Century Bolivarian Socialism is committed to addressing environmental concerns. So, what have they done for (to) the environment so far? There are coastal areas where many species that previously thrived can no longer inhabit the region due to all the unattended oil spills. Their frequent oil spills are also responsible for the environmental destruction of Lake Maracaibo where many Venezuelans, those that didn’t work for state owned oil company PDVSA, made their living fishing…no fish…no fishing. Through neglect and disastrous policies the Chavistas obliterated every area of the Venezuela economy so losing the ability to earn a living fishing was critical to many families around Lake Maracaibo and elsewhere…no longer.

 Then we have “The Mining Arc”, Maduro’s attempt to exploit the vast resource riches other than oil in Venezuela with,once again, disastrous consequences. We detailed the environmental and social horrors inflicted on the region and beyond in Venezuela : Down The Rabbit Hole but here are a few highlights.Measles and malaria rates have skyrocketed as have the levels of mercury in the rivers leading to mercury poisoning of fish, wildlife, and people…destroying the livelihood of the indigenous peoples in the region and causing many deaths from violent clashes between various factions vying for area control.

 Then we have the deforestation effect raising concerns. Since the government can’t produce propane gas anymore, which is the most common cooking method in Venezuela, the people have resorted to wood fires so they’re cutting down trees at an alarming rate. And this is happening everywhere in Venezuela including where I used to live.

 This week we had a report from biologist, Cristina Fiol, telling us that date palms on Margarita Island are being uprooted and sold. With the monthly minimum wage standing at about two dollars you can’t blame people for selling trees to make a buck or cutting them down to cook…they’re starving!

 There’s also the fact that Venezuela, despite a lack of a functioning economy, is number 8 in the world in private jet ownership. Doesn’t sound too carbon friendly. We also have the long history of Chavismo making empty claims, predictions, and promises.

 Now that we have the term “ecosocialism” let’s not forget another term I recently learned, which is directly tied to 21st Century Bolivarian Socialism, “ecocide”.

 In other news we have Venezuela’s Prosecutor General saying they will hold their own investigation into the Human Rights violations and possible crimes against humanity the ICC (International Criminal Court) is investigating suggesting that the ICC should accompany them. What a novel idea! Instead of a completely independent investigation the ICC investigators could just follow the Chavistas around, see what they want them to see, charge a few low level perpetrators,and, as my wife would say,”Y ya’ “. Given Chavismo’s thoroughness thus far in investigating these crimes that sounds like a great idea! We did, however, have a judge in Barinas, 5 days removed from ICC’s Karim Khan’s visit to Venezuela, refusing to drop charges against 50 police officers accused of Human Rights violations. It’s worth noting that the officers haven’t been convicted by the court and no mention is made of who ordered them to commit these violations.

 On the ongoing migration crisis we have IOM (International Organization for Migration)  reporting that in the Darien Gap, a jungle route between Colombia and Panama used by many migrants despite the dangers posed by the area, we have a demographic change. Since 2017 the number of Venezuelans passing through is up 2,216%.

 Regarding the international observers from the EU, Carter Center, the UN, and others that will be monitoring the November 21st elections (supposedly welcomed by Chavismo) we have Sputnik  with this quote from Venezuela’s Foreign Minister. “We do not need other legitimization to recognize our electoral process.” This seems to follow the Maduro regime’s pattern of heralding the various international organizations for accepting their invitation to observe the elections and then criticizing and warning them. Further evidence of this was offered by Merco Press with this quote from Diosdado Cabello,the number two (some say number one) man in Venezuela. “Go to hell with your opinions….they already have their reports ready …sectors of the opposition and imperialism already know what they’re going to say … they still think they’re the empire and we’re the colony!” Sounds like a welcoming environment for the observers to me…

 What is it with these oppressive,authoritarian regimes constantly reminding us how “democratic” they are? The DPRK (Democratic Peoples Republic of Korea) comes to mind, not to be confused with South Korea,a real democratic republic. The Wilson Center did a piece titled “Democratization in Venezuela : Thoughts on a New Path” It was a lengthy piece but here’s the gist of it. Both the government and opposition must recognize their strategies have failed. A step by step incremental approach is needed. A rapid political transition that restores democratic rights…tackles corruption and ends Human Rights abuses …is not achievable given the consolidation of the Maduro regime. Many observers are skeptical the Maduro regime will allow mutual coexistence, there are no incentives. Wilson Center argues the Maduro regime might negotiate a political opening for relaxation of sanctions and humanitarian aid. My take on this and other pieces (and people) addressing the Venezuela situation is…wait for it…NO WAY! We’re going to find out a lot, at least I hope so, as the ICC investigation moves forward. As we’ve said before, Maduro and the high ranking Chavistas know they’re facing jail time or worse when their house of cards collapses and they’ll hold on as long as they can. To think there is any constructive path forward you have to believe there will be some form of collective epiphany among the the Chavistas. It more likely it will be like the old tale of the frog and the scorpion where the scorpion stings the frog after the frog helps it cross the water. “Why did you do that after I helped you?” “It’s my nature.”

 Have a great weekend everybody!!


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