Columnist on death of Chavez • Dave Belton
A vicious dictator dies and the Pravda Press of the mainstream media mourns. Sure, he stole over $2 billion dollars from his own people and added it to his own personal estate. Sure, he confiscated hundreds of billions of dollars of personal property and squandered it on his friends. Sure, he led a military coup d'état against his own country. Sure, he made the poor poorer. Sure, he cavorted with our enemies and defied America as much as he possibly could. Our media loved him anyway.
Venezuela is one of the richest oil countries in the world. It has more crude oil reserves than Saudi Arabia. Yet its people have a lowly per capita income of only $13,000, 85th in the world.
Only 11 countries in the entire world are more corrupt than Venezuela. The murder rate is four times higher now than when Chavez took office. At 20,000 murders every year, it’s one of the highest in the world. Food is scarce and blackouts are frequent in a country awash in energy. Half the Jews have left the country due to his anti-Semitic threats.
Chavez rewrote Venezuela’s constitution so he could be elected four times. He rigged elections, stifled adversaries and bullied the media. Venezuela is now the region’s worst freedom of press offenders. Yet American mainstream media lionizes this dictator, calling him a “champion of the people” and “charismatic” and “huggable.”
The right of an individual to work for and own his personal property is probably the most important reason Western Civilization was able to climb out of the Dark Ages into the prosperity we enjoy today.
Chavez had a constant diet of seizing other people’s property “for the people.” Yet for some reason that property never actually got to “the people.” Instead it was squandered, leading Venezuela into an economic tailspin. Yet our media laments “if he only had more time” his Socialist economic failures would eventually reverse themselves and the unicorns and dolphins would play with each other and all would be magically well.
What a wondrous fairy tale! The Left’s constant search for even one example where Socialism actually leads to prosperity.
I’ve been to Caracas and I can tell you it is the weirdest, most blatantly propagandized countries I’ve ever been to. Even Russia can not compare. The airport and highways are full of posters and billboards of happy, healthy children while the streets are littered with the starving and the poor. It is both sad and disturbing.
But our media doesn’t care about results. They’re far more interested in sweet-sounding promises. Throw in a little anti-American hatred and they’re beside themselves with joy.
C.S. Lewis once lamented, “We make men without chests and expect of them virtue and enterprise. We laugh at honour and are shocked to find traitors in our midst.” The mainstream media has done a masterful job denigrating our civilization and propping up our enemies.
The tyrants of the world laugh.
Dave Belton is the vice chairman of the Morgan County Republican Party.
Printed in the March 14, 2013 edition