by Stephen Lendman
His passing made no difference. Media scoundrels don't quit. They spent 14 years vilifying him. They did it unfairly. They haven't stopped.
They're called scoundrels for good reason. They violate fundamental journalistic ethics. They lie for power. They turn truth on its head.
They substitute managed news misinformation. They support wealth, power, privilege and dominance. They're in bed with wrong over right.
They spurn rule of law principles and democratic values. They're well paid to do so. They betray readers and viewers. They do so unconscionably. They don't give a damn, and it shows.
Why anyone follows them they'll have to explain. Tune them out. Ignore their publications. Choose reliable alternative sources.
Get informed. Stay that way. Why settle for manipulated rubbish. Real news, information and analysis is readily available. Use it daily. Know what matters most.
On March 5, Chavez passed. An era went with him. Venezuelans owe him much. They won't forget.
He transformed an oligarch-run nation into a model participatory democracy. America's sham one pales by comparison. Venezuelans get the real thing and much more.
They deplore what used to be. They won't tolerate going back. Chavismo lives! Bolivarianism is policy. Venezuelans won't let it die. It's too important to preserve. Not according to media scoundrels.
On March 5, The New York Times claimed Venezuela today is "bitterly divided." It's "in the grip of a political crisis." It grew "more acute" in recent weeks.
Times writer William Neuman lied. He's paid to do so. Venezuelans overwhelmingly support Chavismo. His death changes nothing.
Dallas Morning News editor Sharon Grigs headlined "Chavez's death: Now Venezuela can reclaim its lost democracy." She wouldn't recognize the real thing if it bit her on the rump.
The Washington Post did no better. It called Chavez "polarizing." An "institutional crisis" exists.
Other media scoundrels piled on. They pillory what deserves praise. Chavez institutionalized what won't change. Venezuelans won't tolerate their ugly past. They'll challenge dark forces to prevent it.
The Washington Times said "Chavistas' mourn dictator." White House/Capitol Hill reaction ranged from "cautious optimism" to "good riddance."
Obama vilified Chavez often. He scorned him unconscionably. He lied repeatedly. He's a serial liar.
He now says America "reaffirms its support for the Venezuelan people and its interests in developing a constructive relationship with the Venezuelan government."
He doesn't give a damn about ordinary Venezuelans. He never did and doesn't now.
Washington tolerates no independent leaders. Chavez was marked for removal. CIA rogues likely killed him. Perhaps he was poisoned or exposed to cancer causing elements.
Israel used polonium to murder Arafat. Perhaps something similar caused Chavez's death. It wouldn't be the first time America assassinated a foreign leader. It won't be the last. Its rap sheet includes many.
BBC said "Iconic Venezuelan president Hugo Chavez dies." He leaves behind an "economic muddle."
He achieved impressive economic growth and prosperity. Britain's government pales by comparison. It's lawless, corrupt, dysfunctional, and hugely unequal. BBC's its propaganda mouthpiece. Don't expect it to explain.
Media scoundrels attacked Chavez. They did so before he's buried. His state funeral is Friday. Have they no shame? They don't now and never did.
Murdoch's the worst of a bad bunch. His world reflects demagoguery, propaganda, predatory capitalism, warmongering and sleaze.
Journalist Mike Royko's (1932 - 1997) assessment bears repeating. "(N)o self-respecting fish would (want to) be wrapped in a Murdoch paper."
"His goal (isn't) journalism." It's bottom line priorities. It's "vast power, political power." He wields it unscrupulously. He's a world class predator.
He uses deception, intimidation, and bullying. He does so to get his way. He hires likeminded scoundrels. Do it his way or work elsewhere.
No middle ground is permissible. No independent journalists get hired. Truth tellers need not apply. No honest brokers wanted. No telling it like it is.
On March 5, Murdoch's Wall Street Journal headlined "Hugo Chavez: The lesson is to beware the rule of charismatic demagogues."
In December 1998, Venezuelans elected him. A dark era ended. Chavez made things "worse," said the Journal. It lied saying so.
"By 1998, the the Soviet Union was a memory, Latin American countries from Mexico to Chile were successfully adopting free-market policies, and Chavez's friend and role model - Cuba's Fidel Castro - was a discredited dinosaur."
Castro's a model leader. He transformed Cuba responsibly. He did so from police state harshness/casino/brothel corruption into an equitable socialist state.
He was Chavez's mentor and friend. Chavez called him his father and role model. They bonded. They stayed close until until his death.
Not according to WSJThink. "Chavez showed that it's possible to run against the tides of history, at least for a while, and at least if you happen to get lucky with an oil revenue bonanza."
Chavez used Venezuela's oil wealth "to purchase political support of Venezuela's poor, the army and a loyal nouveau riche."
"It also allowed him to become a classic petro-dictator."
"In 1999 he revised the Venezuelan constitution to give him expanded powers."
"He used a constitutional assembly under his control to appoint a chavista Supreme Court."
"He stripped independent TV and radio stations of their licenses and intimidated reporters with draconian libel laws."
Murdoch lies need challenging. They're over-the-top and unconscionable.
Chavez used Venezuela's oil wealth responsibly. Everyone benefitted. Populism replaced neoliberal harshness.
Bolivarianism prioritizes vital needs. Living standards improved remarkably. Disadvantaged Venezuelans benefitted most.
Child mortality fell from 20 per 1,000 to 13. Unemployment dropped from 14.5% to 6.4%.
Income inequality is Latin America's lowest. Poverty was cut in half. Extreme poverty fell over 70%. Economic growth in 2011 was 4.8%. In 2012, it was 5.6%. Forecasts estimate 6% in 2013.
Hundreds of thousands of new homes were built. Commerce grew 9.2%. Communications advanced 7.2%. Manufacturing increased 2.1%. Oil sector production increased.
Growth created jobs. Millions got free healthcare and education. They did so for the first time. Pension eligibility tripled.
Pre-Chavez years were disastrous." From 1980 - 1998, per capita income fell. Chavez turned disaster into success. Venezuela's future looks promising. Give Chavez the credit he deserves.
Corporate owners dominate Venezuela's media. Censorship doesn't exist. Short of advocating sedition or treason, they're free to publish or air what they wish. They take full advantage. They vilify populist reform. They pilloried Chavez for institutionalizing it.
"Though elections were held on schedule, (Chavez) made sure to tilt the playing field….Public workers risked being fired if they voted against him. It was the sort of election only Jimmy Carter could bless."
Carter Center representatives monitor Venezuelan elections. Jimmy Carter calls its process "the best in the world." He does for good reason. It's open, free and fair.
It shames America's sham process. Duopoly power runs things. Republicans and Democrats replicate each other. They're two sides of the same coin.
They're beholden to monied interests. They sold their souls for power.
People have no say. Voters get the best democracy money can buy. Neoliberal harshness, permanent wars, and police state repression follow.
Venezuelan democracy is genuine. Voters need no persuasion. Chavez instituted the real thing. Venezuelans want it no other way.
Expect what he began to continue. It's hardwired to stay. It's part of Venezuelan culture. It won't fade and die.
The Journal claims life for Venezuela's "bec(ame) worse." It lied saying so. It's never been better in generations.
"Chavez made his mark on the world stage by forging alliances with Bashar Assad in Syria and Mahmoud Ahmadinejad in Iran, giving sanctuary to Colombia's narco-terrorist FARC movement, providing the Castro regime with free oil, and inveighing loudly against the United States."
"He succeeded in spawning political imitators in Ecuador and Bolivia."
Chavez governed responsibly. He allied with other independent leaders. He prioritized right over wrong. Journal editors can't tolerate his success. He represented the threat of a good example.
Venezuelans "have to fight to reclaim the democracy they once enjoyed….Let's hope Venezuelans seize the chance to bury the tragic legacy of Chavismo alongside its author's corpse."
Chavismo lives. Bolivarianism delivered democracy. Venezuelans got what they never had. They mourn their great loss.
They want Chavez buried alongside Bolivar. He's in Venezuela's Panteon Nacional (Temple of all the Gods). It lies on Caracas' northern edge.
Its central nave is dedicated to Bolivar. It's adorned with his bronze sarcophagus and paintings reflecting his life. In 1883, an impressive crystal chandelier was installed. It was done on the centennial of his birth.
Expect Chavez be interned there. He belongs nowhere else. Both leaders stood tall. They supported what's right. Venezuelans won't ever forget.
America never had anyone like them. Its deplorable government reflects it. Today it's worse than ever.
It's corporatist, soulless, lawless, belligerent, and repressive. It's a hair's breath from tyranny. Don't explain media scoundrels to explain.
Stephen Lendman lives in Chicago. He can be reached at email@example.com.
His new book is titled "Banker Occupation: Waging Financial War on Humanity."
Visit his blog site at sjlendman.blogspot.com.
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