VENEZUELA

one of the most innovative revolutions of our time

I went to visit the new threat to U.S. benevolent global dominance, the  Bolivarian "process," as they call it, the "building of 21st century socialism," the turning of oil profits to the needs of the people, the building of South-South networks not dependent on the colossus to the north. It's hard to explain it to folks used to tired clichés from lying politicians, but these folks actually mean what they say. They really are turning their society upside down, benignly neglecting the comfortable and helping the poor, who were already actively constructing their own cooperative, insurgent endeavors before Chavez came along. Yet Chavez is much loved: "he spoke to us and woke us up." "Our President, whom we adore, is the first President who has allowed us to rise up."

I get the strong impression that this revolution is a beacon to the hemisphere. It's not about Chavez, who is a very cool person by all evidence, but about a social movement that's been percolating and perking up and peeking through the cracks of the decaying system of corruption and subservience to the big guy up north, lately Bush, or as Chavez calls him "Mr. Danger and his empire." What Chavez has done is to harness the wealth of the state, principally the oil money, and channel it from the kleptocracy to the poor, through a series of "Missions" that circumvent the state bureaucracies. For example, the literacy campaign has rendered the country "illiteracy-free" (UNESCO declaration). More info:  Venezuela Information Office or Venezuela Analysis.

My multimedia piece, "The Streams are Finding the River," can be viewed here .

graffiti wall

The wall - like the land, health, education, culture, etc. etc. - is for everyone.
"With Chavez, we all govern."