I have been running this website alone for nearly three years. Every day, I spend anywhere between one and three hours combing through Venezuelan media outlets for stories, videos, and pictures that I can translate into English and publish here. I do this because I want people to know about some of the things that are happening in the country on a daily basis in a way that they may not be able to were they to rely solely on big media outlets like the BBC or CNN. In short: this website is a labour of love. I need people to know about what is happening in Venezuela.
In my quest to make this website as accessible and fact-based as possible, my daily updates are relatively objective. I am not trained in journalism at all, but when I write the daily updates I try to model them after what I think I might read on a reputable news website. For this reason, the language that I use is often neutral. I try to write in such a way as to let the facts speak for themselves without inserting my own opinion and flourish into the updates.
This is a task that is incredibly taxing, and one that is becoming more difficult each day. It is very difficult for me to remain objective and neutral in the face of such devastating injustice and suffering. For this reason, I would like to take the rare measure of speaking directly from the heart in this update.
Nicolas Maduro is a dictator. The PSUV and chavismo will go down in history as the harbingers of the most destructive and harmful period in Venezuelan history. Maduro heads a repressive, criminal band of kleptocrats who are not in the least interested in governing for the well-being of Venezuelans, choosing instead to concern themselves with only two questions: “How much can I steal? What can I do to make sure I get away with this?” Every person living in Venezuela today – including friends and family whom I love dearly – are hostages to a gang of criminals who enrich themselves through the misery of good people. Many suffer so a few can live in exuberant luxury.
If you – now or at any point in the past – identify with the chavista project and the Bolivarian Revolution, I implore you to think critically about what is happening in Venezuela today. Read beyond what Telesur and Venezuelanalysis say is happening in the country. Chavismo once did a great deal of good by bringing the poor and disenfranchised into the country’s political sphere, righting an inexcusable wrong that had stood for decades. However, I want to suggest to you that it is equally inexcusable to continue to support a regime that has brought untold suffering to millions of people simply because it was once rooted in good principles. It is possible to be a leftist and not support the Maduro regime.
If you know any Venezuelan people, talk to them; ask them how their family in the country is doing; ask them why they left. Chances are that they will tell you stories of toil, suffering, and heartcahe, and chances are that they will lay the blame on the same culprits: Maduro et al.
If you believe that the Bolivarian Revolution is the victim of a vast conspiracy bent on its destruction and hope that chavismo will be able to somehow reverse course and rebuild a country that is in ruins, I leave you to consider the ending of George Orwell’s Animal Farm. In the timeless final scene, the animals of the farm make a stunning realization regarding what had happened to their revolutionary leaders. The leaders of the glorious animal revolution – the pigs – were having a meeting with the humans, who were at one point their oppressive, mortal enemies. Some of the animals in the farm spied on the meeting, and this is what they saw:
Twelve voices were shouting in anger, and they were all alike. No question, now, what had happened to the faces of the pigs. The creatures outside looked from pig to man, and from man to pig, and from pig to man again; but already it was impossible to say which was which.
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