The latest Free Radical's cover story invites the reader to compare the slow strangulation of Venezuela with the same grey death experienced in other places where collectivism has taken power. The latest news in that slide is that Venezuelan leader Hugo Chavez now wants to be leader-for-life Hugo Chavez: not content with just rorting elections to gain power he's now taking another leaf out of the socialist playbook by moving to effect a vice grip on power by removing term limits on his presidential power in Venezuela, and to expel foreigners who publicly criticise him or his government.
Mr Chavez also ordered officials to monitor statements made by international figures in Venezuela. He did not mention any names, but his comments came on the same weekend that Manuel Espino, president of Mexico's ruling National Action Party, criticised Mr Chavez at a pro-democracy conference in Caracas.Chavez shows the same contempt for democracy as do his confreres here. Just another step towards the same socialist suppression of criticism that every socialist country everywhere has taken.
Mr Espino told the conference a plan by Mr Chavez to end term limits on Venezuela's presidency were a threat to democracy.
By the way, the hat tip for this story goes to Kiwi Pundit, who rather sagely observes that with socialists both here and there tinkering with the electoral system for their own advantage that one would be forgiven for thinking that "socialists can only retain power by cheating in elections and suppressing dissent."
As I asked in the The Free Radical: are you watching, young socialists? This has all happened before in every country that's adopted your goals: first penury, then poverty, then one-party rule and the suppression of free speech. It's all so sadly predictable.