Elections Are Venezuela's Last Chance

Venezuela is mired in a dangerous stalemate. President Hugo Chávez clings to power despite the obvious failings of his government: severe economic deterioration and dangerous political polarization. The opposition, tainted by their botched coup of April 2002, now seeks to force Chávez from office through a costly general strike.

Both sides justify their intransigence with one-sided interpretations. His sympathizers glorify Chávez as a defender of the poor besieged by a selfish, coup-plotting elite. His fiercest opponents demonize Chávez as an autocrat pursuing a Cuban-style revolution and destroying democracy. Both interpretations are flawed.

The Chávez government has not helped Venezuela's poor in any significant way. On the contrary, his belligerent rhetoric and inept governance scared off investors, inciting economic decline and boosting unemployment and poverty. Now Chávez lacks majority backing even among the poor.

To continue reading, please log in or enter your email address.

To access our archive, please log in or register now and read two articles from our archive every month for free. For unlimited access to our archive, as well as to the unrivaled analysis of PS On Point, subscribe now.

required

By proceeding, you agree to our Terms of Service and Privacy Policy, which describes the personal data we collect and how we use it.

Log in

http://prosyn.org/L9Pn7UY;

Cookies and Privacy

We use cookies to improve your experience on our website. To find out more, read our updated cookie policy and privacy policy.