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December 10, 2005


Henry Georget

The most important thing to keep in mind when talking about the "Bolivarian Revolution" is the role of Chávez himself. Albert is wrong when he writes that:

"Chavez (...) has also shown remarkable restraint in utilizing the accoutrements of central power and has even been a key source of anti-authoritarian influence."

On the contrary, from the beginning, Chávez has shown his willingness to step over both the letter and the spirit of laws, both those of the "old" constitution of '61, as well as those of the "new" constitution of '99. He dictated to the Asamblea Nacional Constituyente that the presidential term had to be 6 years, that reelection should be allowed, and that the country should be called "República Bolivariana de Venezuela". This process of bending the law to suit his purposes began even before the "new" constitution was ratified, and continued after the Constitution was ratified (which should have marked the end of the ANC) with the decree of 22 December 1999, through which the ANC gave itself powers without popular consent.

But of course, back then, nobody was paying attention to the "Bolivarian Revolution" in the "First World".

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