Latin America

Scenes from the Revolution

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From Reuters, the tale of a stammering representative of the bolibourgeoise who treated reporters to a stinging denunciation of capitalism…while wearing a $180 Louis Vuitton tie and $500 Gucci shoes:

A video of a Gucci- and Louis Vuitton-clad politician attacking capitalism then struggling to explain how his luxurious clothes square with his socialist beliefs has become an instant YouTube hit in Venezuela.

Venezuelan Interior Minister Pedro Carreno was momentarily at a loss for words when a journalist interrupted his speech and asked if it was not contradictory to criticize capitalism while wearing Gucci shoes and a tie made by Parisian luxury goods maker Louis Vuitton.

"I don't, uh … I … of course," stammered Carreno on Tuesday before regaining his composure. "It's not contradictory because I would like Venezuela to produce all this so I could buy stuff produced here instead of 95 percent of what we consume being imported." The video clip (www.youtube.com/watch?v=aDsdXkY4UlE) had been viewed more than 15,000 times on Thursday, a day after it was posted on the YouTube Web site.

The AP translates an editorial from opposition paper Tau Caul, edited by the anti-Chavez leftist Teodoro Petkoff:

Poking fun at Carreno in an editorial published in the Tal Cual daily on Friday, comedian Laureano Marquez wrote a fictional response from the government official.

"Do you think that I, as a revolutionary, am not disgusted by having this imperialist trash around my neck? Of course, but I don't have any other option while locally made ties are not produced," Marquez wrote.

Full story.

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  1. I predict that this type of thing could really hurt Chavez’s party in the next set of free, fair, open, democratic elections in Venezuela.

    But then again, what do I know?

  2. PAY NO ATTENTION TO THE MAN BEHIND THE CURTAIN!

  3. PAY NO ATTENTION TO THE MAN BEHIND THE CURTAIN!

    Shoulda put that in bold. 😉

    I predict that this type of thing could really hurt Chavez’s party in the next set of free, fair, open, democratic elections in Venezuela.

    Assuming that happens, oh yeah. Hypocrisy doesn’t go over really big with any electorate.

  4. Once up on a time, the people who gave me shit on Venezuela threads posted under their own names.

    Tee hee.

    (If I was a better person, I would have gotten this out of my system by now. Oh well, maybe that can my New Year’s resolution.)

  5. He paid $180 for a boring black tie? He’s not only a hypocrite, he’s fashion impaired?

  6. Once up on a time, the people who gave me shit on Venezuela threads posted under their own names.

    Tee hee.

    joe – ???

  7. James Carville in a $180 Louis Vuitton tie and $500 Gucci shoes.

  8. He should have answered with something like what the great labor leader John Lewis said when caught coming out of the opera with a fancy cigar.

    “Boys, nothing is too good for the proletariat.”

  9. There’s nothing inconsistent in his comments. Nice things are for the politically powerful. Socialism is for the poor. You can’t expect the tireless, brilliant party leaders to do without.

  10. Personally, I have a hard time imagining any capitalist forking over $180 for a necktie with somebody else’s name on it.

    If I ever get rich, and can spend whatever I want on clothes, they’ll be made to order, and have *my* name on them.

    -jcr

  11. Designer labels are for peasants.

  12. Mao bought his suits right off the rack.

  13. Though I do like the part about the hot tubs and not having to work, there’s a lot about the lifestyles of the rich that I question.

    Wearing ties and uncomfortable designer clothes instead of a tee-shirt and jeans and sneakers, for example.

    Having to eat snails and fish eggs rather than pizza and Chinese take-out, another example.

    Living in a Manhattan apartment with a stunning view of another Manhattan apartment, all for a rent equal to the monthly mortgage on a three bedroom Midwestern ranch house but with the square footage of only that ranch house’s garage.

    Just how much ‘fun’ is it to drive a Beamer or Mercedes versus a mass-produced subcompact that can actually squeeze through traffic and into parking spaces?

    And not being able to afford enough cocaine to fry out my brains, that’s something I don’t miss.

    If I was a rich man . . . I wouldn’t work. And that basically is about the only difference it would make. Well, maybe I’d also get Blu-Ray . . . .

    I can understand these socialists, though. Socialism is motivated by envy of the rich, and so socialists feel a compulsion to live ‘the good life.’

    But meanwhile in the capitalist world, you’ll notice that Microsoft products have been going downhill ever since Bill Gates started wearing a coat and tie.

  14. Joe S. — Had a moment like you were describing, where I was in a truck with some guys from my church, on our way to help move boxes into someone’s new house. One of the guys said the part he liked about living in Hawaii was that you often had a hard time telling the rich from the poor. I was dressed in ratty, comfortable clothes, as usual, and when I mentioned that I was an example of that, a multimillionaire who drove a 1999 Camry and wore aloha shirts and slippahs everywhere, they were stunned. They had no idea.

    If have money but aren’t satisfied with the stuff you have, you aren’t really rich. The most happiness-inducing thing money can buy is the leisure to do stuff you enjoy. If the stuff you enjoy involves working your tail off, that counts too.

  15. The most happiness-inducing thing money can buy is the leisure to do stuff you enjoy.

    QFT! I’m a retired enlisted amn with a small nestegg. I live downtown (I’d always wanted to do that) in a 1 BR Apt. A widower, I don’t even want to get hitched a third time. Why get a job? So I can drink Mai Tais on a Kauai beach once a year? Been there, done that. After 20 years in the Navy, I’ve travelled enough.

    Life is friggin’ good in the USA.


  16. (If I was a better person, I would have gotten this out of my system by now. Oh well, maybe that can my New Year’s resolution.)”

    dammit, joe. We both promised over a cup of General Foods International Coffee that we would reduce the number of times we say “you go, girl” to ourselves. you… you… you…

    RESOLUTION TWO TIMER!!!

    *sobs. runs off.

  17. Rich? The Chinese have a saying that a rich man is a man who has enough.

    Life is friggin’ good in the USA.

    Yeah. I’m another ex-Navy guy who can affirm the truth of that. People who’ve never been outside the US have no friggin’ idea.

  18. On the local radio this morning, some numbnut “economist” was saying how capitalism works best when the government actively intervenes in the economy by taxing the rich and subsidizing the poor. This was on my radio alarm, which was a nasty thing to wake up to. My brain still hurts from listening to it.

  19. On the local radio this morning, some numbnut “economist” was saying how capitalism works best when the government actively intervenes in the economy by taxing the rich and subsidizing the poor. This was on my radio alarm, which was a nasty thing to wake up to. My brain still hurts from listening to it.

    Ha! That’s why I used to have my clock-radio set to Mike Malloy. He could usually be counted on to say something aggravating enough to provoke me into getting up, at least long enough to hurl the clock-radio at the wall…

  20. (If I was a better person, I would have gotten this out of my system by now. Oh well, maybe that can my New Year’s resolution.)

    Nope… I’m quite sure you’ll be the same unbearably self-righteous Dem partisan that you have aways been…

    NTTAWWT (-and John Kerry is still a ‘traitorous lickspittle’…)

  21. From Pig Mannix’s Mike Malloy link (bear in mind this is a far-left Democrat ranting here): This Democratic whore, Bill Clinton – all of a sudden, I can’t stand him anymore. To me, he is as corrupt and degenerate as the Bushes. He has become almost like an associate of the Bush Crime Family. … I’ve had enough of this son of a bitch. I’ve had enough of him, and his crazy-ass wife.

  22. How joe really feels about Republicans when he’s deep in his cups (actually, still from the Mike Malloy link):

    “You sons of bitches. I just hate you. I hate you to the depths of my soul. I will hate you when I’m dead. I will hate you a million years after I’m dead. I will still hate you. My hate will be a star in the firmament that will shine down on your Republican asses forever. That’s how deep this hatred is, because of what you’re doing to this country. Ooh, did I say all that?”

  23. that will shine down on your Republican asses forever.

    He expects Republicans to be around forever? That’s a prospect that doesn’t bode well for far-left Democrats.

  24. “Is it that we revolutionaries don’t have the right to have a Hummer or a car? If we make money, we can do it,” Acosta said

    Okay, THAT’S the Revolution? And Capitalism is taxing the rich and redistributing it to the poor?

  25. The Ivy restaurant in Beverly Hills actually disproves your idea. The food there is absurdly overpriced like most hoi polloi places, but the stuff you get is basically microwaved garbage you could find at an awful diner. (Seriously, the menu is American/Italian whatever and I wouldn’t be surprised to hear they used Velveeta.) When our driver pulled up with my host’s BMW, I spotted Rupert Murdoch and wife at a table outside, and I realized that this is the place rich people go to get crap comfort food, like you or I would go to Denny’s.

  26. This has absolutely nothing to do with the topic at hand, but it’s late and there’s no one around to ask…what’s the website where you can get IDs and passwords for lame-ass newspaper websites that require registration for the privilege of reading their articles? I used to use it all the time and now I can’t remember the URL.

  27. @stubby

    http://www.bugmenot.com/

    There’s also a Firefox plug-in that will do it for you automagically. You can find it on the web site.

  28. Suggest the people posting here read CLASS by Paul Fussell.

    Money has very little to do with it.

    Oh, and guys? Think of income taxes as insurance rich people pay so they don’t end up hanging from lampposts. Read about the fucking French Revolution, for gossakes.

  29. I knew someone here would know! Thank you, my porcine pal.

  30. gr,

    It’s amazing that few, if any, rich people were hung from lampposts from 1789-1913, when there was no income tax.

    Apparently leftists view the French Rev the same way that neocons view the 1938 Munich peace conference…as a one-size-fits-all historical reference that “proves” that their opponents are wrong, even when the current situation bears only a slight resemblance to it.

  31. gr & crimethink,

    Most (over 60%) of the victims of the terror were peasants, artisans, etc.

  32. “Life is friggin’ good in the USA”

    QFT!! QFT!! QFT!!

    agreed, J sub and Smartass!

    the “freedom fries” crowd needs to live outside the us, preferably while using a different language, to realize the full extent of their pride!!

  33. This place Rocks!

  34. Geez, even when Spanish-speaking people are at a loss for words, they still talk way too fast.

    Another in a long, long line of embarrasing moments for the “Bolivarian Revolution.” More like “take what you want Revolution.”

  35. The slaughter of the French Revolution started out aimed at the aristocracy though it shortly degenerated into “whoever held power at the time could get rid of his enemies” deal.

    Also, I’m sure someone will correct me, the French Revolution was started by the bourgeoisie and it was largely over having a large portion the product of their labor consumed by a class of parasites who had the power to tax them.

    The eighteenth century French aristocrat was not the equivalent of the modern capitalist.

  36. Oh, and guys? Think of income taxes as insurance rich people pay so they don’t end up hanging from lampposts. Read about the fucking French Revolution, for gossakes.

    That might be true in a country where a substantial portion of the population was poor. However, in this country, that’s something like less than 10% of the population, and even at that, “poor” is a relative term.

    Unlike France, the peasants have plenty of bread (and cake!) to eat, not to mention beer to drink and pr0n to gaze upon, and TV’s and DVD players with which to gaze upon it. Not to mention, in this country the poor are more likely to be suffering from obesity rather than starvation.

    I sincerely doubt you will be seeing the poor revolting over a repeal of the income tax anytime soon.

  37. Unlike France, the peasants have plenty of bread (and cake!) to eat, not to mention beer to drink and pr0n to gaze upon, and TV’s and DVD players with which to gaze upon it.

    And satellite/cable service, and refrigerators, and washwes and dryers, and central heat, and indoor plumbing, and publicly financed education and on and on. If you were to put a typical late 18th century aristocrat in a moderm welfare recipient’s situation, he’d think his wealth had grown immeasuably. His only bitch, I’d expect, the behavior of his neighbors.

  38. Along the lines of what Joe S. is saying, I’d rather drink beer from cans on the front porch of a three-decker than go to a cocktail party full of women named Cokie and Tipper and Kissie.

  39. Unlike France, the peasants have plenty of bread (and cake!) to eat, not to mention beer to drink and pr0n to gaze upon, and TV’s and DVD players with which to gaze upon it.

    A situation which came about during a period of high income taxes.

    Just sayin’.

  40. If you were to put a typical late 18th century aristocrat in a moderm welfare recipient’s situation, he’d think his wealth had grown immeasuably. His only bitch, I’d expect, the behavior of his neighbors.

    You leave out the element of security. An 18th-century aristocrat would probably like the material wealth of modern society (material wealth which, once again, was most created during a period of high income taxes), but he probably wouldn’t like that it could all be taken away if he had a month-long run of bad luck.

  41. It’s amazing that few, if any, rich people were hung from lampposts from 1789-1913, when there was no income tax.

    It’s amazing that people can look at the large, fortified armories that were built in just about every sizable American city during the period you mention, and think that they were put there because of a fear of foreign invasion.

    Sure, the Gilded Age sure was known for its lack of class-based violence.

  42. joe,

    You seem to be insinuating that the income tax caused the increases in material wealth.

  43. I “seem to be insinuating” that point to a lot of people. I also often “seem to be insinuating” that the Clinton/Democratic economic package of 1993 caused the remarkable, extended growth of the 1990s.

    In both cases, the actual point I’m making is that the hated, oft-denounced policies did not stop, or even reduce to any observable extent, the remarkable economic growth that occurred while they were in place – notwithstanding the doomsday predictions that those policies’ detractors made upon their adoption.

  44. joe,

    Is it not possible that the growth would have been larger without the income tax, though?

    I’m not gonna say you’re wrong, but I’m also not gonna say you’re right (because you’re wrong).

  45. crimethink,

    As it was, during the 1990s, the growth was so great that the Fed actively worked to keep a lid on it. So, no, it is not possible that the growth could have been greater.

    And given that the period when we had the income tax coincided with our rise from an also-ran to the greatest economic power the world has ever seen, I’d have to conclude one of two things: that the income tax had either little or no suppressive effect, or that the policies and programs made possible by the income tax – not the tax itself, to be clear – had an expansionist effect that swamped what ever suppressive effect the income tax had.

  46. joe,

    You’ve got to be kidding me.

    The period of our rise from also-ran to greatest economic power also coincided with the era of Jim Crow laws. Does that mean separate but equal is a helpful part of economic policy?

  47. crimethink,

    What about the Pilsner riots and the Red/Black alliance era Chicago, similar activity in other cities, from 1850 or so on? Anarchists and Socialists would protest together and threaten the people who built Chicago, and employed almost everybody.

    Oh, in Chicago anyway, free Blacks would move away when irish moved in, “blockbusting” did not begin in the 1960s, it was over a century old by then and the races were reversed.

    After the Civil War, not sure what Jim Crow (or equivelant) laws were in effect in the major Northern cities because they keep getting ignored by the press and college professors.

    Don’t forget the California measures to prevent Chinese immigrants from owning real property. Saw something interesting on C-SPAN, a rerun from the 1990s, about that.

    One thing is certain, all of the government measures to suppress workers by race or sex did nothing but hobble economic progress.

  48. “Do you think that I, as a revolutionary, am not disgusted by having this imperialist trash around my neck? Of course, but I don’t have any other option while locally made ties are not produced,” Marquez wrote

    Maybe some friends of ours can find a little something to go around his neck….

  49. joe,

    You keep crowing about “free, fair, open, democratic elections.” But when the people elected intimidate the press and nationalize industries, does it really matter how they came into power?

  50. A situation which came about during a period of high income taxes.

    Just sayin’.

    During the no income tax period, we never outlawed booze (nationally). Once the income tax passed, prohibition followed right behind. Causation? Correlation? You make the call. Just sayin.

  51. Okay, since Bolivia has apparently split into 2 and is about to undergo a civil war, can we switch from discussing Chavez (not that we were) to Morales?

    joe: Does everything you have said about Raul apply to Evo too?

  52. During the no income tax period, we never outlawed booze (nationally). Once the income tax passed, prohibition followed right behind. Causation? Correlation? You make the call. Just sayin.

    Correlation. The same sociopolitical movement thought America would be improved if women could vote, senators could be directly elected, taxes could be shifted from tariffs/excises to income, and alcohol could be prohibited.

    Oh, you were being rhetorical.
    Never mind.

    (Nitpick – Federal income tax did not begin in 1913. It was first implemented in the Civil War and lasted until 1872 without as far as I know, a successful legal challenge against it. The 1894 attempt at reintroduction was declared unconstitutional, hence the 16th ammendment)

  53. Is this where we begin the discussion of Ohio being a State or not?

  54. Uhm,

    Why are you always on about Ohio not being a state, Guy?

    Anytime the IRS is mentioned, you start bitching and moaning about Ohio’s statehood like a truther moaning about “free-fall speed”.

    Give it a rest already…

  55. “As it was, during the 1990s, the growth was so great that the Fed actively worked to keep a lid on it. So, no, it is not possible that the growth could have been greater.”

    Ever hear of the “Greenspan put?”

  56. …like a truther moaning about “free-fall speed”.

    INTO THEIR OWN FOOTPRINTS!!! INTO THEIR OWN FOOTPRINTS!!!

  57. I predict that this type of thing could really hurt Chavez’s party in the next set of free, fair, open, democratic elections in Venezuela.

    Whenever that is. I submit that it is difficult to claim elections are legitimate when leading opponents of the regime are catching bullets or on the run from the political police.

    Like, you know, in Venezuela.

  58. I’d rather drink beer from cans on the front porch of a three-decker than go to a cocktail party full of women named Cokie and Tipper and Kissie.

    Clocking my Weekly Agreement with joe.

  59. crimethink, robc, Kohole,

    I’m not going to explain my point about the difference between “caused” and “did not stop” to you again.

    Just reread what I already wrote, because I’ve made my point perfectly clearly.

  60. robc,

    “Raul” who?

    RC,

    I submit that it is difficult to claim elections are legitimate when leading opponents of the regime are catching bullets or on the run from the political police.

    Like, you know, in Venezuela.

    You mean the place where the all-powerful election-corrupter just lost his election? Yeah, the opposition sure is living in terror, what with their open campaigning and political organizing, and ability to turn out a majority of supporters.

  61. So, joe, are you saying that the assassination of political opponents and the political police in Venezuela are consistent with legitimate elections, and wouldn’t taint (sorry, Urkobold) an election that Chavez wins?

  62. I think it’s a shame that political violence is so pandemic in Venezuela, and that things have not improved over the past few years.

    Does the violence perpetrated by Chavez loyalists, or the greater amount of violence perpetrated against Chavez supporters, taint the elections? Absolutely it does, just as so many of America’s own elections were so-tainted in the 19th and early-20th centuries.

    Were the 1968 elections in the United States legitimate?

  63. Was the opposition’s victory in the refendum vote legitimate? Was it tainted?

  64. Does the fact that student dissident leaders, Stalin, Guevara, et al. have to sleep in different safe houses every night say anything at all about how DIFFICULT it is to have free and fair elections in Venezuela? Or just how heroic the defeat of the Dec 2 Referendum was?

    Or is it these students just like to have sleep overs?

  65. I have no idea what “student dissident leaders” like.

    I know I’ve learned enough to be skeptical about the anti-regime propaganda that people repeat so credulously on internet sites.

    This defeat wasn’t supposed to be possible, remember?

  66. But not at all skeptical about the abundant pro Chavez propaganda that people, especially leftists not living in Venezuela, repeat so credulously on intenet sites.

  67. Was the opposition’s victory in the refendum vote legitimate? Was it tainted?

    Nope, but that’s because they’re not the ones who control the election machinery, the government, the media, and the political police. Chavez can steal an election. They can’t. Its a double standard, because it isn’t a level playing field.

    Does the violence perpetrated by Chavez loyalists, or the greater amount of violence perpetrated against Chavez supporters, taint the elections?

    How many Chavistas have been assassinated, joe? How many of them have been arrested by the political police? Do you seriously believe that the opposition has done more to intimidate and attack the loyalists than vice versa, given that the loyalists have (and are using) the tools of an authoritarian state?

  68. Well, you never know. SOME of those students had slingshots! I do get a kick out of the irony of Chavez’ 21st Century Socialism being brought down by someone named “Stalin”.

  69. Perhaps we can note the significance of a journalist calling Mr. Carreno on this. Usually journalist just let that kind of thing go.

  70. “I predict that this type of thing could really hurt Chavez’s party in the next set of free, fair, open, democratic elections in Venezuela.

    But then again, what do I know?”

    As always, you totally ignore the evidence of Chavez’s wrongdoing joe. How many stories discussing Chavez’s attempts to rig the referendum, only to be thwarted by the army, have to come out before you stop apologizing for this thug? How many businesses does he have to privatize at gun point? How many dissenting TV stations and newspapers does he have to shut down? How many political opponents does he have to call “traitors” on National TV? You are such a total fucking nitwit to believe this man(or any election in Venezuala )is free, fair and open. And what is even more funny is how you gloat over how fucking dumb you are. You are such a fucking moron, it beggars the imagination as to how one could be so fucking stupid. Where did you get you degrees” Bevery Hills Upstairs College”. I know people with 47 chromosomes that are more intelligent than you, jackass.

  71. “Was the opposition’s victory in the refendum vote legitimate? Was it tainted?”

    “Does the violence perpetrated by Chavez loyalists, or the greater amount of violence perpetrated against Chavez supporters, taint the elections? ”

    To RC Dean:

    You probably shouldn’t have wasted your time providing answers that we all know, except for joe. That he can actually see some sort of equivalence between forces that are backed by the full weight of a quasi-dictatorship, and its dissenters just demonstrates how far beyond rational thought he is. And as I pointed out above, he totally ignores Chavez’s past, and present, wrongdoing and the evidence that Chavez tried to rig the referendum, so that he can play gotcha with people who have criticized Chavez. If a similar referendum would have taken place, or even been hinted at in the United States, joe would be criticizing Bush as a would-be dictator. But when Chavez does it, and barely loses only because his attempts at rigging the election are thwarted by the army, joe gushingly hails him as a democrat.
    The only question that actually deserves an answer is why anyone even bothers to listen to joe at all anymore when it comes to the topic of Venezuala. He has shown on numerous occasions that he is willing to engage in any manner of rhetorical gymnastics to defend and apologize for Chavez’s thuggery. For god sake, he has written about how great Cuba is and has invented fake neighbors from Zimbabwe so he can apologize for Mugabe. Why bother wasting your time arguing with such a total fucking idiot?

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