The fall of Venezuela is an atrocity.
The comic elements are clear enough — the further you remove yourself from the poverty, chaos, and collapse. We can wallow in a bit of Schadenfreude, taking glee as some American leftists squirm to explain why the socialist paradise they ballyhooed a mere three years ago now tail-spins to the grave.
The collapse of this socialist experiment offers an enormous level of tragedy. It’s not pretty.
The country’s leader, President Nicolas Maduro, makes his predictable desperation play. Rather than confront his own errors, and the futility of making socialism work in anything like a rigorous form, he boasts. “Venezuela Leader Says US ‘Dreams’ Of Dividing Loyal Military,” reads yesterday’s Reuters report. While no doubt true, this is one of those cases where whatever we dream to the north, our dreams are better than their current reality.
Of course the Venezuelan military should turn on Maduro, Hugo Chavez’s inheritor, protecting the right of recall, which Maduro is denying. By painting the U. S. as the bad guy, Maduro hopes to unite his people — especially his armed forces — around him. That’s what a desperate demagogic dynast does. Citizens and subjects traditionally abandon skepticism about their leaders when they feel threatened from the outside.
Which is one reason it would be a mistake for the U. S. to intervene.
Reuters poetically reports that the military is still united behind the socialist government, and resists the recall referendum, singing “Fatherland, Socialism, or Death!”
Wrong conjunction. Not “or” but “and” . . . if you insist on socialism.
The government, military pressure or no, should allow the recall vote, and soon.
This is Common Sense. I’m Paul Jacob.