Friday, September 22, 2006

Who's the Devil?
How Venezuela handles dissent...

Hat tip to Cox and Forkum for the cartoon. You can read their related commentary and links HERE, with links to articles about the severity of Venezuela's laws against criticizing the president or the government - in public or private. Even Freedom House rates Venezuela among the worst offenders:

...“Venezuela's scores have dropped across the board in all four indicators of good governance addressed in the study: accountability and public voice, civil liberties, rule of law, and anti-corruption and transparency. In fact, only Nepal, Zimbabwe, and Nigeria have experienced a greater net change for the worse.” ...

Even Nancy Pelosi has called Chavez an "everyday thug". Good for her, it's her job as party whip to have a clue. Actor Danny Glover, on the other hand, remains clueless. He's escorting and promoting Chavez here, but then he supports Fidel Castro too, so we shouldn't be suprised.

Related links:

From Peggy Noonan:
Answer Chavez
...America has seen this before, seen Krushchev bang his shoe on the table and say "We will bury you." We grew up watching our flag being burned on TV. So it's tempting to think this is part of a meaningless continuum.

But the temperature of the world is very high, and maybe we're not stuck in a continuum but barreling down a dark corridor. The problem with heated words now is that it's not the old world anymore. In the old world, incompetent governments dragged cannons through the mud to set up a ragged front. Now every nut and nation wants, has or is trying to develop nukes.

Harsh words inspire the unstable.

Coolants are needed. Here is an idea. Don't try to ignore Chavez, answer him. With the humility that comes with deep confidence, with facts, and with some humor, too.

There is an opportunity for the Democratic Party. Some Democrats responded with spirited indignation the day after Chavez spoke. It was rousing. But Chavez's charges were grave, and he claimed America's abuses could be tracked back a century. If the Democrats seek to speak for America, why not start with a serious and textured response, one that isn't a political blast-back but a high-minded putting forward of facts? This would take guts, and farsightedness. Rebutting a wild-eyed man who says you can find redemption reading Noam Chomsky is a little too much like rebutting a part of your base.

As for the administration, it is so in the habit of asserting, defending and repeating, it barely remembers how to persuade and appeal...

From The Anchoress:
Chavez clearly listened to Dems and Air America
All Chavez is doing is repeating exactly the idiotic crap that the left has been spewing for 6 years. And the Democrats have who have encouraged the hate.

... But maybe some on the left finally understand that while they’ve been having fun and laughing while calling President Bush every manner of ugly name and insult, dangerous people have been watching. And they have made a calculation: We can disrespect Bush and America will laugh with us. Bush is weak. America is once again the appeasing “weak horse” it was throughout the 1990’s and even before…when we could attack anything and be accountable to no one. ...

(HT Tammy Bruce). Be sure and read the rest of this post from The Anchoress; she rips into the left on this issue.

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