OpEdNews Op Eds

If Venezuelans Have a Dictator, What Have We Here?

      (Page 1 of 1 pages)
Related Topic(s): ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; (more...) ; ; , Add Tags  (less...) Add to My Group(s)

View Ratings | Rate It


Author 2017
- Advertisement -
This is a letter to the editor of the Eureka Reporter that I wrote last Thursday night. It was published today, Tuesday Feb. 6, 2007. This letter is in response to this editorial:


The letter can be found here:


Failure to seek accountability has left citizens confused
by Dave Berman, Eureka, 2/6/2007

Glenn Franco Simmons recently described Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez as a dictator, tyrant, strongman and authoritarian. If Simmons can support this by citing stacked courts and monopolized rule, what should we conclude about Supreme Court Justices Alito and Roberts, six years of a rubber-stamping one-party legislative branch and only one veto but more than 1,000 signing statements?

If we can't claim ignorance of the Chavez regime's ruthlessness, as Simmons asserts, what is it that enables us to look the other way from those responsible for torture at Abu Ghraib and Guantanamo, willful neglect in New Orleans and depraved indifference to the constitutional role of the Congress in making war?

If Chavez is guilty of intimidating the media, as Simmons reported the U.S. State Department had determined, what are we to make of reporting so unquestioning that it continues to leave the unanswered questions of 9/11 unasked? So un-skeptical that it was completely wrong about the threat of WMD in Iraq (despite millions protesting in the street who knew better)? So cowed that even when felonies (warrantless wiretapping) are openly admitted there is still no call for accountability?

Chavez's "presidency" was referred to in quotes, as can often be seen in reference to another leader first appointed by the Supreme Court and later "re-elected" with voting equipment that could never be recounted or otherwise verified.

Simmons goes on to use many other colorful words, such as "disappearances," "extrajudicial killings" and "increased militarization of public administration." Should these words make Americans uncomfortable? Last fall, Congress passed the Military Commissions Act eliminating habeas corpus, meaning we can be jailed without charges, thus enabling "disappearances." U.S. military forces are augmented by paid mercenaries from Halliburton and Blackwater, making a living doing "extrajudicial killings." And last fall, Congress nullified Posse Comitatus, a 19th century law prohibiting the use of the U.S. military for domestic policing, yet another step toward "increased militarization of public administration."

I'm not so much interested in Chavez or anyone's opinion of him, really. What is more important is that newspaper editors acknowledge what is in plain sight. Reticence is tacit approval, a rather insidious way to throw in one's lot. The failure to question and seek accountability has left many good citizens understandably confused, or even "certain" with knowledge that is false. If Venezuelans are ruled by a dictator, tyrant, strongman and authoritarian, what have we here?
- Advertisement -
- Advertisement -



Dave Berman, C.Ht. has extensive training and experience in Hypnosis, Neuro-Linguistic Programming (NLP) and Life Coaching. He is also a Certified Laughter Yoga Leader, Ivy League graduate (B.S. in Communication from Cornell University), and a (more...)

Share on Google Plus Submit to Twitter Add this Page to Facebook! Share on LinkedIn Pin It! Add this Page to Fark! Submit to Reddit Submit to Stumble Upon

Go To Commenting

The views expressed in this article are the sole responsibility of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of this website or its editors.

Follow Me on Twitter

Contact AuthorContact Author Contact EditorContact Editor Author PageView Authors' Articles
- Advertisement -
Google Content Matches:

Most Popular Articles by this Author:     (View All Most Popular Articles by this Author)

Book Review - Daybreak: Undoing the Imperial Presidency and Forming a More Perfect Union by David Swanson

Calibrating Your Thought Compass: What Thought Feels Better?

Book Review: "am I being kind" by Michael J. Chase

Slacker Uprising? Not in the Charlie Brown Nation.

Photo Gallery: Eureka, CA Peace March 3/15/08

Hurricane Gustav, Shock Doctrine and "Election" Events


The time limit for entering new comments on this article has expired.

This limit can be removed. Our paid membership program is designed to give you many benefits, such as removing this time limit. To learn more, please click here.

Comments: Expand   Shrink   Hide  
5 people are discussing this page, with 9 comments
To view all comments:
Expand Comments
(Or you can set your preferences to show all comments, always)
the WDC think tanks put a lot of money and energy ... by anechoic on Wednesday, Feb 7, 2007 at 10:29:49 AM
Sincerely, I don't dispute your comment, but I'm n... by Dave Berman on Wednesday, Feb 7, 2007 at 6:30:49 PM
Everyone should read 'Confessions of an Economic H... by Aimee on Thursday, Feb 8, 2007 at 10:50:09 AM
For woe or weal, we get rid of our President poten... by pratliff94 on Wednesday, Feb 7, 2007 at 11:47:38 PM
Absolutely correct. Chavez will be a long term nui... by larry booth on Thursday, Feb 8, 2007 at 12:09:47 AM
The Consent of the Governed is supposed to be the ... by Dave Berman on Thursday, Feb 8, 2007 at 1:27:30 AM
Hi, How about making President Hugo Chavez our ... by Aimee on Thursday, Feb 8, 2007 at 10:43:29 AM
How about taking a bath with a rattlesnake?... by larry booth on Thursday, Feb 8, 2007 at 2:49:07 PM
I am unwilling to have him or anyone else overthro... by pratliff94 on Thursday, Feb 8, 2007 at 5:10:52 PM