[quote="mediadog"]How many countries have gone down this road and become economic basket cases? [/quote]
I'll make the question easier. Can anyone name a country that has gone down this road and NOT become an economic basket case?
Time's up. There aren't any.
THE RETURN OF THE IDIOTS,
Alvaro Vargas Llosa
â€œThroughout the 20th century, Latin America's populist leaders waved Marxist banners, railed against foreign imperialists, and promised to deliver their people from poverty. One after another, their ideologically driven policies proved to be sluggish and shortsighted.â€
â€œIn the late 1990s, it seemed as if the Idiot were finally retreating. But the retreat was short lived. Today, the species is back in force in the form of populist heads of state who are reenacting the failed policies of the past, opinion leaders from around the world who are lending new credence to them, and supporters who are giving new life to ideas that seemed extinct. â€œ
Latin American Idiots have traditionally identified themselves with caudillos, those larger-than-life authoritarian figures who have dominated the region's politics, ranting against foreign influence and republican institutions. Two leaders in particular inspire today's Idiot: President Hugo ChÃ¡vez of Venezuela and President Evo Morales of Bolivia. ChÃ¡vez is seen as the perfect successor to Cuba's Fidel Castro (whom the Idiot also admires): He came to power through the ballot box, which exonerates him from the need to justify armed struggle, and he has abundant oil, which means he can put his money where his mouth is when it comes to championing social causes. The Idiot also credits ChÃ¡vez with the most progressive policy of allâ€”putting the military, that paradigm of oligarchic rule, to work on social programs."
My general rule is that when some one announces he is too dumb to understand elementary distinctions, I admit defeat and concede the debate.
Still it may be a useful exercise to examine FERLANDâ€™s argument.
I suppose itâ€™s true that Bush shows some parallels to some prominent past tyrants and dictatorsâ€”he does have two eyes, two legs and two ears, among other thingsâ€”but it is equally true that his administration shows the same parallels as those of past American presidents called upon to deal with national security crises. The tyrants Lincoln and Roosevelt comes immediately to mind.
It canâ€™t be denied that â€œBush has moved a huge amount of power into the Executive Branch, and effectively himself.â€ The executive power is always enhanced by a national security crisis and always contracts vis-a-vis Congress in more peaceful times.
"The right to remain silent is supposed to be sacred." Despite the Geneva Convention formula "name, rank and serial number" no country has ever treated this as sacred. Patrols are not sent out to seize prisoners in order to obtain their name, ranks and serial numbers, and yet all armies seek prisoners for purposes of interrogation.
""While Chavez's elections have been cited as fraudulent, here in our country we have all the joy of Diebold machines which are questionable, to be put lightly."
I note with interest the agnostic view of the Chavez frauds coupled with innuendos about the dread Diebold machines---a favorite of the Moonbat Brigade. The Internet and LTTEs have been loaded with suspicions, scenarios, hints and innuendos, but no authenticated case has been established. But, of course, in Paranoia World, the absence of evidence is usually taken as evidence since it demonstrates the vast reach of sinister forces.
"2004 Elections resulted in vote counts in certain districts that were higher than the number of registered voters. " The majority of such districts, if memory serves, went Democrat (e.g., Baltimore, Kansas City, Detroit).
"Tell me where I'm wrong, give me your sources. You may begin by saying anything I've said above is not true, citing what it is, and what you have to substantiate that."
It doesn't work that way. It is up to you to substantiate your charges.
"What many people call a conspiracy theory has a funny way of being true."
Oh yes, let's hear it for conspiracy theories---Jews, Freemasons, International Financiers, the Rockefeller-Queen Elizabeth Drug Cartel, Illuminati---enemies everywhere, conspiring in dark corners to run the world.
"We say that we are given certain inalienable rights by our creator, but that they don't apply to people who aren't citizens?"
The inalienable rights cited are a general statement of natural law. American constitutional rights are not not regarded as [i]ius gentium[/i], never have been.
"Terrorist do not have miranda rights."
No they don't. No more than Axis POWs or Nazi war criminals, etc.
"No person... shall be compelled in any criminal case to be a witness against himself." The argument is that we find ourselves at war with international terrorism. The means and methods in war are not the same as the means and methods in criminal investigation.
How about terrorist, dictator supporting Marxist power-crazed loon?
Misunderstood? What like Stalin? (Don't laugh I was told that Stalin was misunderstood and not an evil genocidal maniac when I was at Colby.)
China and Vietnam may be totalitarian states, but they are going in the opposite direction from Venezuela. Both have realized the need to free their economies from state control and it's paying off. But then, their rulers are considerably brighter than Baldacci's thuggish friend, Chavez.[/quote]
Brighter than Baldacci as well?
MARK. A university of Maryland poll indicates that 71% of the Chinese believe the free market is the best way to organize an economy. Baldacci might benefit from a visit. They are a famously patient people and might be willing to take the time to explain a few simple principles.
Good ol' Hugo continues his progress on the road to dictatorship. He just shut down a TV station that was critical of him.
[url=http://www.reuters.com/article/worldNews/idUSN2621739620070526?feedType=... outta the totalitarian playbook.[/url]
One of Venezuala's four remaining independent television stations has been closed down and Hugo Chavez's thugs are now demonstrating outside another one. It will not be long before Venezuela takes the final steps to a complete dictatorship.
At the same time the Chavez government is throwing the economy into chaos as it attempts to buy the support of the downtrodden with destructive price controls and the redistribution of productive farm land to those who have no idea about how to maintain it.
By pursuing such policies, Venezuela is following Zambabwe down the road to a complete economic disaster. Let's hope enough Venezuelans regain their senses before their oil-rich country becomes another economic basket case. But it may be too late.
Where is the righteous anger? We have a governor who panders to the new dictator. We have a representative of a minority group praising his "generosity." And we have a media that can muster little attention or concern for a nation that is descending into the murky depths of totalitarianism.
What a sad situation.
Tough question, mediadog. In the ol' days this sort of situation would be solved with a coup, possibly supported by an outside government. That could still happen in this case. Or someone from the inside might solve the problem on their own (the US will be blamed for it, of course). But boy oh boy, if there was ever an argument for a US sponsored coup, Chavez is the poster boy. Screw the oil - he's only two or three steps away from summary executions of political opponents. The economy of that nation is sinking fast, there are already signs of food shortages... this thing is a case study.
Gotta admit I'm really torn on this one. The idealist in me wants Venezuela to descend into the Marxist hellhole Chavez is angling for, to serve as a reminder to the rest of the world that Marxism kills. The moralist in me wants that nation to regain its senses as fast as possible, so that the incipient agony of that nation is curtailed.
The realist in me recognizes that neither of the above is likely, given Chavez's stranglehold on power. The cynic in me predicts that someone walks up to Chavez and creates a third nostril.
Dictator? Tyrant? Naaaahh!! He's just a FUN MUCHACHO!!
[i]Hey! Watch out for Baldacci's infamous "air noogie"!!![/i]
[size=9]Credit: This was originally the George Bush and Saddam picture[/size]
[quote]Kennedy, representing Citizens Energy Corporation, has been a television spokesman for Citgo, the Venezuelan oil outlet in the United States. Kennedy maintains on camera that Citgo is donating millions of gallons to needy Americans â€œbecause no one should be left out in the cold.â€ The reality, however, is that many Venezuelans are left out of the nationsâ€™ political process. There is little doubt that the Kennedy gambit is designed to elicit good will for Chavez and, in a nation naÃ¯ve about foreign affairs, it appears to be working. Some spokesmen have even urged their listeners to buy Citgo gas. After all, some of these dupes contend, Chavez is using oil revenue to alleviate poverty.[/quote]
[url=http://blog.thehill.com/2008/04/07/chavez-and-his-friends-in-congress/#m... The Hill[/url]
[quote="Henry Clay"]One common misconception is that Chavez is a dictator. This is not true, Kabche said. While he originally led a coup against the Venezuelan government, he was imprisoned when it failed. While Chavez was in prison, the president was impeached in a corruption scandal. Another coup took place, toppling the regime and putting Chavez into power.
But then Chavez made a move that made him a "heroic symbol" to Venezuelans, Kabche said. He made several reforms, including dissolving the Venezuelan Congress to be replaced by a National Assembly, and then resigning from the military to run for election. He won, and has been called to special elections several times by the opposition party, but has remained in office.
Chavez was part of a lower social class, and Kabche described him as "a practically illiterate person who educated himself for his entire life," and continues to educate himself while in office. Class still creates "a notion of distinction" in Venezuela, more so than in the United States., Kabche said. But he explained that one could still move from one class to another.
[url=http://www.mainecampus.com/media/storage/paper322/news/2006/11/06/News/V... for Chavez[/url][/quote]
It leaves one wondering who if anyone, would be considered a dictator to the good fellow...I suspect it would be any non socialist in power.
[quote]I know I'm jumping into boiling water now, but Bush is doing very well at being parallel to some prominent past tyrants and dictators.
Nutty as a fruitcake...using the law and constitution as written to govern is moving in a dictatorial manner in a country with real free elections while taking power under a coup, seizing private property and stealing from folk to buy votes in fixed elections is not dictatorial....
Lets do an errors check:
[quote="Jeff Ferland"]Chavez had the Enabling Act, Bush has a combination of Signing statements and unprecedented Executive Orders, and my personal favorite lassification of previously public documents.[/quote]
Signing order are not unique to this president..here is a list of Clinton signing statements from 1999
"William J. Clinton March 15th, 1999 Statement on Signing Legislation Providing Guaranteed Loans for Farmers and Ranchers
William J. Clinton March 30th, 1999 Statement on Signing Legislation Extending Bankruptcy Code Provisions
William J. Clinton April 2nd, 1999 Statement on Signing the Small Business Year 2000 Readiness Act
William J. Clinton April 9th, 1999 Statement on Signing the Sudbury, Assabet, and Concord Wild and Scenic River Act
William J. Clinton May 4th, 1999 Statement on Signing Legislation To Award the Congressional Gold Medal to Rosa Parks
William J. Clinton May 21st, 1999 Statement on Signing Legislation Authorizing Appropriations for the Peace Corps
William J. Clinton May 21st, 1999 Statement on Signing the 1999 Emergency Supplemental Appropriations Act
William J. Clinton July 20th, 1999 Statement on Signing the Y2K Act
William J. Clinton July 22nd, 1999 Statement on Signing the National Missile Defense Act of 1999
William J. Clinton August 17th, 1999 Statement on Signing the Veterans Entrepreneurship and Small Business Development Act of 1999
William J. Clinton August 17th, 1999 Statement on Signing the Military Construction Appropriations Act, 2000
William J. Clinton August 17th, 1999 Statement on Signing the Water Resources Development Act of 1999
William J. Clinton September 24th, 1999 Statement on Signing the Organ Donor Leave Act
William J. Clinton September 29th, 1999 Statement on Signing the Treasury and General Government Appropriations Act, FY 2000
William J. Clinton September 29th, 1999 Statement on Signing the Treasury and General Government Appropriations Act, 2000
William J. Clinton September 29th, 1999 Statement on Signing the Extension of the Airport Improvement Program Act
William J. Clinton September 30th, 1999 Statement on Signing the Energy and Water Development Appropriations Act, 2000
William J. Clinton October 5th, 1999 Statement on Signing the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2000
William J. Clinton October 9th, 1999 Statement on Signing the Department of Transportation and Related Agencies Appropriations Act, 2000
William J. Clinton October 9th, 1999 Statement on Signing Legislation To Extend Bankruptcy Relief to Family Farmers
William J. Clinton October 20th, 1999 Statement on Signing the Departments of Veterans Affairs and Housing and Urban Development, and Independent Agencies Appropriations Act, 2000
William J. Clinton October 21st, 1999 Statement on Signing Legislation Establishing Black Canyon of the Gunnison National Park
William J. Clinton October 21st, 1999 Statement on Signing the Black Canyon of the Gunnison National Park and Gunnison Gorge National Conservation Area Act of 1999
William J. Clinton October 22nd, 1999 Statement on Signing the Agriculture, Rural Development, Food and Drug Administration, and Related Agencies Appropriations Act, 2000
William J. Clinton October 26th, 1999 Statement on Signing the Wireless Communications and Public Safety Act of 1999
William J. Clinton November 4th, 1999 Statement on Signing the Department of Defense Appropriations Act, 2000
William J. Clinton November 8th, 1999 Statement on Signing Legislation To Locate and Secure the Return of Zachary Baumel, a United States Citizen, and Other Israeli Soldiers Missing in Action
William J. Clinton November 12th, 1999 Statement on Signing Legislation To Reform the Financial System
William J. Clinton November 12th, 1999 Statement on Signing the District of Columbia College Access Act of 1999
William J. Clinton November 20th, 1999 Statement on Signing the Federal Financial Assistance Management Improvement Act of 1999
William J. Clinton November 29th, 1999 Statement on Signing Consolidated Appropriations Legislation for Fiscal Year 2000
William J. Clinton November 30th, 1999 Statement on Signing the Veterans Millennium Health Care and Benefits Act
William J. Clinton November 30th, 1999 Statement on Signing the Veterans' Compensation Cost-of-Living Adjustment Act of 1999
William J. Clinton December 3rd, 1999 Statement on Signing the Intelligence Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2000
William J. Clinton December 6th, 1999 Statement on Signing the Healthcare Research and Quality Act of 1999
William J. Clinton December 9th, 1999 Statement on Signing Legislation To Protect a Segment of the Chattahoochee River
William J. Clinton December 9th, 1999 Statement on Signing Legislation To Establish Federal Criminal Penalties for Commerce in Depiction of Animal Cruelty
William J. Clinton December 9th, 1999 Statement on Signing the U.S. Holocaust Assets Commission Extension Act of 1999
William J. Clinton December 9th, 1999 Statement on Signing the John H. Chafee Coastal Barrier Resources System Act
William J. Clinton December 9th, 1999 Statement on Signing the Digital Theft Deterrence and Copyright Damages Improvement Act of 1999
William J. Clinton December 12th, 1999 Statement on Signing the Deceptive Mail Prevention and Enforcement Act
William J. Clinton December 17th, 1999 Statement on Signing the Ticket to Work and Work Incentives Improvement Act of 1999 "
About executive orders...You forget the Clinton executive orders on national monuments. He, with the stroke of a pen made thousands of peroperty owners land worthless, a taking illegal under the constitution.
And it you liked classifying public documents, you must have been infuriated when the Clinton administration classified half their papers to keep them from special prosecutors in the various Cinton scandal investigations.
No, too easy...you confuse your opinion with fact and hope the rest of us are as stupid.
Well, after one previous attempt to get this through failed, [url=http://www.breitbart.com/article.php?id=D96CD0C01&show_article=1]Chavez has now successfully scrapped term limits.[/url] Barring a coup, he can now remain Venezuela's president as long as he likes.
On the one hand, the collapse of oil prices would suggest that a coup is more and more possible; Chavez has found it difficult to live up to his promises of late. OTOH, anyone attempting a coup in Venezuela would have to do so without US support - it's rather hard to envision our own neosocialist government being particularly supportive of any such effort.
Watch and learn, campers, watch and learn.
Chavez will have to win re-election in a couple years. This constitutional amendment will just allow him to run for re-election ad nauseum.
[quote="Dan Jenkins"]Chavez will have to win re-election in a couple years. This constitutional amendment will just allow him to run for re-election ad nauseum.[/quote]
Saddam ran for re-election every so often, too.
IIRC, North Korea periodically "elects" its Beloved Leader.
How many elections has Robert Mugabe won?
Once constitutional constraints on a nation's chief executive are removed, it becomes quite easy to manipulate elections. Chavez has already stated that he thinks he needs another 20 or 30 years in office.
Smells like a dictatorship to me.
Humm? George Kabche caught.
[url=http://bangornews.com/detail/50092.html]GK: Fined $150 operating vechicle without liscense[/url]
Nope, only the savior of the 'oppressed' here:
[url=http://www.google.com/hostednews/ap/article/ALeqM5g-XT1LHvGnHwytS8tnBmfn... step closer to lifetime rule[/url]
"Opponents say Chavez already has far too much power, with the courts, the legislature and the election council all under his influence. Removing the current 12-year presidential term limit, they say, makes him unstoppable.
"Effectively this will become a dictatorship," opposition leader Omar Barboza told The Associated Press. "It's control of all the powers, lack of separation of powers, unscrupulous use of state resources, persecution of adversaries."
For all the faults of Chavez, blatant vote manipulation, a farce of an election and others like this are not one of them. If this were a dictatorship as you claim wouldn't the vote on this referendum have been 99%-1%? what about the one a couple years ago chavez was pushing that he lost. His party regularly loses seats in provinces and major mayorships. Id put the no term limits more comparable to our congress. Its really tough to beat an incumbent, weve got people who have served for life essentially (Byrd, Strom Thurmond, Dingle, just to name a couple) but even strong incumbents can stumble and lose elections: Sen Bunning was very close last time, Sen Stevens lost amid a corruption scandal, even Frozen Money Jefferson of New Orleans was beat in a supposedly safe dem district by a repub! This is more like the system the US had prior to the constitutional amendment creating a 2 term presidential term limit. And didn't someone introduce an amendment to repeal that this year anyway? I personally like term limits, i would support them in the House and the Senate, i would support them for the Venezuelan president, I would support them for many reasons, however there are legitimate arguments against them (ive heard some here) first and for most 'the ballot box are term limits!'