The horizon is not so far as we can see, but as far as we can imagine

The Coup Attempt in Venezuela

So, Juan Guaido has declared himself the President of Venezuela. (He wasn’t elected as such.)

The US and Canada have recognized him, along with Brazil, Argentina, and Peru, among others. (Freeland, the Canadian Foreign Minister did so while on stage with Brazil’s Bolsonaro, who won an election after his main opposition was locked up. The person responsible for that is now his Minister of Justice.)

All perfectly above board, I guess.

I’ve never been a huge fan of the Bolivaran revolution, mostly because it was mismanaged. But this is clearly a foreign-supported coup against an elected leader. Venezuela’s election was no more compromised than, say, the 2000 US election–or many other elections.

It’s probably just a coincidence that Venezuela has the world’s largest oil reserves.

The Venezuelan situation is complicated, but there appears to be no question that the opposition forces (pale, middle, and upper class) have done everything they could to sandbag the government, up to and including destroying consumer goods so they could enhance shortages. Meanwhile, Maduro has generally had the support of the darker-skinned, lower classes descended from Indians.

Meanwhile, the US, of course, has punitive sanctions on Venezuela.

The Bolivaran revolution has not been well managed, but the criticism that “socialism always fails, because the US always makes it fail” is looking more and more valid.

The US has said “all options” are possible if Maduro crushes the opposition, which is code for using military force.

Maduro, of course, is perfectly within his rights to use force to capture someone declaring themselves President without being elected.

This has been coming for some time.

So far, despite his various failings, Trump has not been as bad as Obama simply because he has not started a war. (Yes, yes, he has been nastier to various people in the US rather than people who live in other countries.)

If he starts a war here, this will no longer be the case.

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  1. BlizzardOfOz

    The Venezuelan situation is complicated, but there appears to be no question that the opposition forces (pale, middle and upper class) have done everything they could to sandbag the government, up to and including destroying consumer goods so they could enhance shortages.

    Good info, thanks! Know your enemy, as they say. Any other physical characteristics we should be on the lookout for? Beady eyes? Hooked noses??

  2. Ian Welsh

    Sorry the reality is that light skinned people make up most of the upper and middle classes while dark skinned people make up most of the lower class.

    If you refuse to admit or see this, you will be unable to understand the politics and societies billions of people live in. (Start with India.)

    Strangely enough, they don’t like policies that are good for poor (dark) people. You may have noticed something similar in America, but been unwilling to say it.

  3. Mallam

    Elected leader, yeah, maybe the presidential election immediately after Chavez’s death when Maduro barely won. Maduro got his ass kicked in 2015 parliamentary elections, and rather than recognize such a defeat, he bypassed it entirely and essentially ignored the results. Equivalent would be if Trump spent a few years ignoring Congress, packed the courts to override everything congress did, and then Pelosi declared herself president. Coup obfuscates what is actually happening.

    Ofc, given that Trump is a moron, and his advisors are evil or incompetent, US involvement is ill advised. The good news is that once again we don’t have to center the US at all given that the region itself is taking the lead. This happening was inevitable because Venezuela’s instability is spilling across the border, was only a matter of time.

  4. JohnB

    This issue needs a bigger focus on the quality of the Venezuelan election. It does not seem to be even remotely comparable to the US election of 2000 – can we have a proper analysis of how corrupt it actually was? (with details)

    A coup – especially a military backed by the US coup – would be disastrous. It does look like the situation is already heavily undermined by the corrupt election though.

  5. Herman

    Even if you think the Maduro government has mismanaged the country it is really none of our business. I can’t wait for all of the people who scream about Russia influencing American politics to support a coup in Venezuela. Look for people in the media to start calling Trump “presidential.” There is nothing that unites Republicans, Democrats and media talking heads more than meddling in the affairs of another country.

  6. HomoSapiensWannaBe

    Oil, Oil, Oil!

    U.S. shale oil, besides being produced at an overall loss, not counting environmental poisoning, and which is likely to result in a derivative/debt meltdown sooner than later, will soon “peter” out and rapidly decline in production. Also, shale is a light oil that when fractioned in a refinery, produces mostly gasoline, and not as much jet fuel, diesel, kerosene as conventional oil. The “shale oil revolution” is one reason gas prices have been so low the past few years. There is almost an excess of gasoline vs. the heavier fractions needed by industry. Semi-trucks don’t run on gasoline!

    Venezuelan oil is mostly heavy oil, loaded with sulfur, and much more complex to refine, but with proportionally much more of the industry dependent jet fuel, diesel, kerosene, lubricants, etc. than shale oil.

    The Koch Brothers have a big heavy oil refinery in Texas which is underutilized. They are chiefly behind the ongoing Keystone XL project to bring heavy oil from the tar sands of Alberta, Canada to this refinery in TX. They would love, just LOVE, to get their greedy muffins on Venezuela’s heavy oil at cheap prices. They could then export finished products from the ports of TX. This is where the big profit is, not in oil exploration and production.

    These political shenanigans in Venezuela — encouraged and probably caused by the “democratic” U.S. — are a clear sign of the near-term desperation for energy supplies that will fuel industry for another few decades.

    I think Michael Parenti has written and spoken the most concise explanations about how the U.S. does everything it can to prevent successful social revolutions in Latin America and elsewhere.

    An oil producing nation with a successful, growing economy will consume more and more of its own oil production over time, potentially leaving less to export. In addition to trying to keep the Petrodollar ponzi recycling scam going as long as possible, this is another factor in the ongoing attempts to cripple Russia, except the U.S. will never be able to stop Russia’s development.

    Russia has everything it needs in resources and talent to succeed for the next 100 years or more. Russia is, in my opinion, populated with a strong, attractive, intelligent people who are mostly Christian and white. Not a demographic that is easy for the west to demonize for political gain. It will not need to export much excess capital as its markets develop, and it has nearby customers for its increasingly high-tech products beyond its vast supplies of oil and gas. It certainly won’t need Western banks to lend it money. Wall Street and the City of London are soiling their pants about this!

    Empires need to extract resources from elsewhere to the center to survive. The U.S./British empire now has mucho competition from China and Russia. It appears to be driving the political class crazy. Witness the recent nuttiness in U.S., British, French and other Western governments. Pass the popcorn!

  7. Tom

    Maduro has declared all US Diplomats Persona Non Grata and given them 72 hours to leave. US is saying they don’t recognize Maduro’s right to tell them to leave.

    Russia, China, and Turkey back Maduro alongside Cuba and Bolivia. Military is firmly behind Maduro, Chavez was one of theirs and they are sick of US backed interventions.

  8. nihil obstet

    I’m not sure who’s been nastier to various people in the U.S. — Trump or Obama. Trump’s been a lot louder and more explicit with his bigotry, but Obama’s policies were devastating. The bank bailout complete with a HAMP designed to “foam the runway” for the banks by further entrapping borrowers was a massive transfer of wealth from the middle and lower classes to the rich. The militarization of police proceeded apace, normalizing the sight of tanks rolling down the streets of American cities to quell protests. Obama nationally coordinated dispersal of peaceful protests on the night of the attacks on Occupy sites. He couldn’t prosecute white collar crime, but he could prosecute whistleblowers, even holding Chelsea Manning in conditions equivalent to torture. And so on.

    I don’t like the smirking white patriarchal supremacy that Trump has encouraged to slither out into the open, but Trump’s internal oppressions have thankfully suffered from the same incompetence as his foreign ones.

  9. different clue


    The armed forces and other groups, plus the support of key foreign friends, probably keeps Maduro firmly enough in power and authority that he could order the arrest and expulsion/deportation of American diplomatic personnel if they have not left in 72 hours. He could have them flown to an airport in Bolivia or Cuba and there put off the plane.

    If Maduro invites Russian advisers into/onto all the military bases fast enough, before the DC FedRegime can co-ordinate physical attacks on those bases, the DC FedRegime may not be able to launch actual attacks at all.

    I suppose the “heavy sour oil” rubric is applied to Venezuela’s Greater Lake Maracaibo Region oil fields? Whole refineries in the southern US and the Caribbean were designed to refine that particular oil. If that rubric is meant to apply to the Tar Sands along the Orinoco River, don’t believe it. That Tar isn’t “oil” at all. It is Tar. And there is a whole Alberta Tar-load of Orinoco Tar along the Orinoco River. If all that were mined, diluted with the hyper-carcinogen benzene and sent through pipelines under the name “dilbit” ( for “diluted bitumen”) the way the Canadian petro-aggressionists want to do with the Alberta Tar, then all that skydumped new carbon will heat up the planetary climate system even more fasterer than just the Alberta Tar by itself.

    And making the World Economy safe for Orinoco Tar will keep the World Economy safe for Alberta Tar. So I am not a bit surprised that the Petro-Aggressionary OilRegime of Canada would support the coup against Venezuela. This is after all the same Oil State Regime whose country owns the company called Enbridge which rammed “Pipeline Number Five” under the Straights of Mackinaw and which has worked with Governor Snyder to sneak a “Mackinaw Petro-Tunnel Authority” into existence to keep the Alberta Tar flowing. As well as filling up the Kalamazoo River with leaked pipeline tar near Marshall, Michigan a few years ago.

  10. different clue

    I tried leaving a comment but since it never showed up, not even as being “in moderation”, I suspect I hit a wrong button and never even effectively sent it at all.

    So here is a much shorter version to try again with.

    Maduro has the support of the Armed Forces and perhaps all the other Organs of Law and Order. If so, he could have the American diplomats arrested and expelled after 72 hours. He could have them deported to Bolivia or Cuba. He could invite Russian advisers into every military base and facility in Venezuela so fast that the DC FedRegime would be unable to launch attacks against any of them.

    Most of the oil in Venezuela isn’t oil at all. It is Tar. Just like the Tar in Alberta. And there is a whole Alberta Tar-Load of Tar in Venezuela. If all that Venezuela Tar could be mined, mixed with the hyper-carcinogen benzene to liquefy it enough to flow through pipelines ( like Alberta does with the Alberta Tar) and sent to market for burning in all the engines and furnaces of the world; then the World Economy would be made safe for Alberta Tar as well.

    So naturally the Carbon-Aggressionist Ottawa Regime supports the Coup. Ottawa wants to move all that Alberta Tar just as badly as Edmonton does. And they want to send it through their Colonial Imperialist Keystone Pipeline across the best farmland and Oglalla Aquifer land of America to the export platforms of the Gulf of Mexico.

    And think what all the Tar in Venezuela will do for the climate when it joins all the Tar in Alberta . . . up, up in the Atmosphere . . . up where the Air is Clear . . .

  11. Chiron

    In Brazil Lula and his party tried to be the “nice guy” leftist, won elections and re-elections, but this won’t stop the fascists of trying (and succeding) to destroy you and your party. The Left needs to start to play rough, like really rough if they want to survive and thrive.

  12. Heliopause


    I’m afraid it’s true. In fact, if you look at Latin American societies you’ll find many have a similar dynamic; a largely pale-skinned, conservative, US supported elite dominate the upper echelons of power, while a darker, oppressed population mostly escapes our attention until those rare occasions they manage to gain some power, as in Venezuela. What’s darkly humorous is that our US center-liberals decry white supremacy where it manifests itself here while gleefully supporting it in other countries.

  13. Heliopause

    Echoing some of the other commenters here, this opens a very large can of worms. Russia and China and some other countries are not going to simply let the US and its allies do whatever they want this time, and as others have noted the military and a large chunk of the population are supporting Maduro for now. A move as immoral and stupid as this one seems like a Bolton move, and a weak-minded Trump was talked into it.

  14. Mallam

    Bernie Sanders weighs in with a pitch perfect statement. I endorse it in its entirety:

    The Maduro government has waged a violent crackdown on Venezuelan civil society, violated the constitution by dissolving the National Assembly and was re-elected last year in an election many observers said was fraudulent. The economy is a disaster and millions are migrating. The United States should support the rule of law, fair elections and self-determination for the Venezuelan people. We must condemn the use of violence against unarmed protesters and the suppression of dissent. But we must learn the lessons of the past and not be in the business of regime change or supporting coups–as we have in Chile, Guatemala, Brazil & the DR. The US has a long history of inappropriately intervening in Latin American nations; we must not go down that road again.

  15. Z

    I don’t see how the US will be able to intervene successfully or safely into the situation. I don’t think Trump is that dumb to get militarily involved in it and he’s not owned by the oil companies so he doesn’t have any personal incentive in the matter.


  16. Z

    Hillary Clinton would have been more likely to get involved in Venezuela than Trump because she would have financial incentive to.


  17. Hugh

    Lots of black hats in this affair. Not seeing any white ones. On top of this, the Venezuelan economy is dependent upon a product that is killing the planet.

  18. Z

    If something is done it will be done through our CIA, they know their way around down there.

    I wouldn’t put it past Trump going that route, but he and the CIA, and the intelligence community in general, don’t trust each other.

    Then again, the CIA could just do it themselves. There’s enough connections between the CIA, the security companies, and the oil companies that there’s mounds of financial incentive involved. And there’s people in the government looking for a big payday.


  19. Wesley Sandel

    When Chavez took office in 2000 60% of Venezuelans had been living not in poverty but dire poverty for decades. While oil was at its historic highest prices and Venezuela was raking in money 60% of Venezuelans lived in dire poverty.

    Now, because “socialism,” the US is claiming that poverty is a bad thing. Every Latin American country is characterized by widespread poverty, and every one of them but two are capitalist.

    But socialism causes poverty.

  20. Stirling S Newberry

    This is right-wing authoritarians saying that left-wing totalitarians are out-of-line. Two boys black with dirt.

  21. so

    Bernie Sanders is dead to me now. Just more of the same. All this Syria and now Venezuelan bull shit makes me sick. Break the US government up now. Time to start over.

  22. Mallam

    Yeah, Bernie’s calling for “free and fair elections” and an end to violent repression is your red line and then you wonder why no one listens to you. Bernie Sanders vision is one of hope and returning democracy to the people. It’s also one of international solidarity.

  23. Sid Finster

    Lest anyone accuse Ian of making things up, antisemitism or anything else.

  24. different clue

    I suspect “Trump’s” decision to recognize this new pop-up “government” in Venezuela is really Pence’s, Pompeo’s, Bolton’s, and the Establishment-Generally’s decision and Trump is just too dumm to know better than to go along with it.

    It’s exactly what a President Clinton would have done. And that is disappointing but not surprising, considering that Pence is nothing but an establishment Clintonite with some Evangelical perfume sprayed on it.

    If Trump really does get impeached and removed, or Article 25ed and removed; it will be to make Pence the president.

    Gentlemen prefer blondes and Democrats prefer Pence.

  25. Ché Pasa

    It’s reassuring to learn that Trump has nothing to do with this, it’s all the doing of his underlings, rivals and the Dreaded Deep State who’ve been angling for that precious Venezuelan oil since God was a boy.

    Still, it is a bit puzzling that this Wizard Disrupter in the White House has no agency at all when it comes to killing and coups and getting walls built and such, but by himself will overthrow the rule of neoLibCons in the US and throughout the world, bringing peace and plenty to all.

    Friends from Venezuela (self-exiled white folks) despised Chavez (zambo and mono they called him) but they loathe Maduro with the whitest of hot passions. They blame him (a damned ignorant bus driver!!!) almost entirely for the current economic collapse of the nation. I’m not sure they are even aware of the inherent racism of their anti-Bolivaran position, as it seems that Venezuelans among other Latin Americans simply deny any racism or overlook it as unimportant.

    But this is one of the more interesting engineered coups in my memory. Simply deny the legitimacy of the elected president and elevate the (mumble-mumble whatever) something something of the National Assembly and stage a sparsely attended “inauguration” and call it Done. Wow.

    Note, all the highest and whitest of the mighty go along with it. Dems and Rs together in Congress assembled, the Tight and Right of Britain and Canada, a handful of Latin American leaders, and there you are.

    And yes, we mustn’t fool ourselves. War, invasion, occupation indeed, is definitely on the horizon.
    It would be the ideal distraction from the collapse of the regime in Washington, no? Wars are always good for presidents in jeopardy anyway — we can think of a couple of current ones — and there is already plenty of bipartisan support for military and/or other intervention.

    So why not?

  26. S Brennan

    To DC;

    As was pointed out over at MOA, the prime beneficiary of almost 21 years of this siege, should it succeed, is the Kock Bros & friends whose refineries can refine Venezuela’s particularly heavy crude. So Koch’s known, long term apparatchiks, Pence, Pompeo, are particularly eager to please their dark lord.

    While Pasa’s Orwellian world view can not recognize the undeniable fact that the “Venezuela coup” as been in play for over 20 years because of his TDS and his absolute fealty to the “modern” [D] party, independents are not so blind. Here’s Rolling Stone on the matter, [I’d link but, lately, comments are being deleted without explanation]

    “[O]ne of the great ironies of the Obama years, the president’s financial-regulatory reform seems to benefit Koch Industries…Koch Industries is not a major oil producer. Instead, the company has woven itself into every nook of the vast industrial web that transforms raw fossil fuels into usable goods. Koch-owned businesses trade, transport, refine and process fossil fuels, moving them across the world and up the value chain until they become things we forgot began with hydrocarbons: fertilizers, Lycra, the innards of our smartphones.

    The company controls at least four oil refineries, six ethanol plants, a natural-gas-fired power plant and 4,000 miles of pipeline. Until recently, Koch refined roughly five percent of the oil burned in America (that percentage is down after it shuttered its 85,000-barrel-per-day refinery in North Pole, Alaska, owing, in part, to the discovery that a toxic solvent had leaked from the facility, fouling the town’s groundwater). From the fossil fuels it refines, Koch also produces billions of pounds of petrochemicals, which, in turn, become the feedstock for other Koch businesses.

    Koch is also long on the dirtiest and most carbon-polluting – oil deposits in North America: the tar sands of Alberta. The company’s Pine Bend refinery, near St. Paul, Minnesota, processes nearly a quarter of the Canadian bitumen exported to the United States – which, in turn, has created for Koch Industries a lucrative sideline in petcoke exports. Denser, dirtier and cheaper than coal, petcoke is the dregs of tar-sands refining. U.S. coal plants are largely forbidden from burning petcoke, but it can be profitably shipped to countries with lax pollution laws like Mexico and China. One of the firm’s subsidiaries, Koch Carbon, is expanding its Chicago terminal operations to receive up to 11 million tons of petcoke for global export.

    Follow the money…

  27. different clue

    @S Brennan,

    Yes, Koch is certainly long on Alberta Tar. And Orinoco Tar is similar enough to Alberta Tar that it would also work in the Gulf and Caribbean Tar-focused refineries.

    And it is true that Pence is Trump’s nexus with the Axis of Koch.

    What countries are going to buy the petcoke? China . . . Mexico . . . who else? Petcoke is as close as it gets to coal except for coal itself. The Corporate Globalonial Plantationist Free Trade World Order is designed to facilitate world wide trade in petcoke and everything else. The ” political-movement” “institutional” answer would be a successful series of Economic Sovereignty Nationalist movements taking power in various countries and taking those countries out of the Free Trade System. Whole countries with protectionised national-sovereign economies would be International-Law legally free to ban trade with countries which use coal and petcoke for energy. It wouldn’t be easy. But it could be done in theory.

    Meanwhile, all the concerned individual can do is to boycott production from Mexico, China, etc. as much as possible. Unless a billion people all over the world did the very same, it wouldn’t have a real petcoke-suppressing effect. But it would at least allow the individuals boycotting the buyer-countries-of-petcoke a chance to reduce the amount of tar on their hands.

    And the Alberta-Ottawa Petro-State regime has “agency” here. It freely seeks to mine and export all the tar in Alberta. It has conspired very fiercely to ram Keystone X across America. Koch the eager-buyer means little without Alberta-Canada the eager-seller.

  28. Hugh

    Two things that mitigate against a US military intervention in Venezuela are that American soldiers getting killed there would be political poison among US voters. The only way to sell it would be to rescue Americans, and there is currently no indication that any Americans need to be rescued. The other thing is that US military interventions are really, really disliked by pretty much everyone in Latin America and South America. The US policy Establishment does recognize this and would seek to avoid one. For the Trumpenfuehrer crowd, this is an open question. About the only thing that would confer legitimacy on Maduro among Latin Americans would be such a strike.

  29. different clue

    The Global Axis of PetKoch is prepared to move very fast here. Is Maduro and any supporters or friends he may have prepared to move faster? Within days or a week?

    What is Maduro’s support base within the Armed Forces and the Police Forces . . . really? When they are discussing it amongst themselves in secret behind the closed doors of an un-bugged room? Would the Armed and Police Forces leadership AND followership all unanimously support the strong presence of Russian Advisers on every military base and inside of every police station in Venezuela? So that no inside or outside forces dare attack those bases or stations?

    If the unanimous support for Russian Advisers in and on every potential target is there, then Maduro and Russia would need to get those bases and stations filled up with Russian Advisers within the coming week. Once attack has been held off, then the Maduro government would need to give millions of easily operated fire-arms and tens of millions of rounds of ammunition for them to millions of their civilian supporters all over Venezuela. That way, the Madurists could survive and win a Civil War of Extermination against the Opposerists.

    I don’t know if that would be morally “right” or “wrong”, but I suspect it is the only slender thread of hope that the Madurists have left for physical survival and then unconditional victory after that. And a beneficial side-effect of such a Civil War of Extermination would be that the petro-infrastructure of Venezuela would be so totally wrecked and destroyed that the Orinoco tar would not be mined and exported, and would not join the Alberta tar in atmospheric carbon brotherhood.

  30. different clue


    The Americans . . . ah, yes, the future-hostage Americans. I forgot about our people there. One thing the CIAists and the Kochists and the EuroWhite-ist Venezuelan Oppositionists COULD do would be to mount a false-flag operation in Madurist disguise to take our Embassy people hostage. That would be the “Pearl Harbor Incident” needed to enrage Americans into supporting an invasion of Venezuela.

    Can Maduro prevent that from happening? Could he send so much overwhelming force against the Embassy so as to take it over, round up all the Embassy Americans without loss of life or any injury and immediately deport them all to Cuba or somewhere for immediate release upon landing?
    If not, can the Madurists surround the Embassy with such overwhelming force-in-place so as to be able to detect and exterminate-in-detail any attempt to “take the Embassy personnel hostage”?

    Because if the Madurists can’t stop it, then a false-flag “Embassy kidnapping” ( America held hostage all over again!) would be the logical “Remember the Maine” incident needed to get the American public ready to support invading Venezuela. So one hopes the Madurists are ready to exterminate every person involved in such a false-flag attack fast, hard and thoroughly. Taking only enough prisoners to get total detailed information on all such further attacks-in-planning.

  31. different clue

    To S Brennan again . . .

    The Koch Brothers’ fungus-like spread throughout the petro-based supply and manufacturing and sales chain downstream from the oil fields and tar mines is a very interesting approach on their part.
    We cannot live with no-Koch-at-all. But we can live with less-Koch-than-now. So what are all the companies and products which are Koch-based or have Koch on their hands? Which ones are so necessary for survival that we all agree not to blame eachother for buying their stuff . . . so we can devote our energy to identifying and down-buying or boycotting the ones whose stuff we CAN live without? Or at least live with less-of?

    There are various websites which describe in more-or-less detail the Koch-allied or Koch-dependent companies and what they make and do. I will include one such website in another comment just in case the presence of websites gets comments vaporised. The title of the website as findable on the yahoo is . . . Companies / Koch Industries.

    I don’t think I can live without Lycra. But I can live without “fertilizer”. All I have to do is buy Organic Food which is grown without “fertilizer”. ( The fertilizer being Haber-Bosch Nitrogen fertilizer in this case). Or grow my own food in my own garden without “fertilizer”.
    And suppose I treat my Lycra goods so well that they last twice as long as “normal”? That would mean that I could buy half as much Lycra as “normal”. If all the buyers of Lycra throughout the whole world made their Lycra last twice as long, the whole world would buy half as much Lycra. I think the Kochs would notice that.

  32. different clue

    @ S Brennan,

    Here is an attempt to post that Koch Industries website. We’ll see if it posts.

  33. different clue

    @ S Brennan,

    Well, what do you know . . . it posted.

  34. Ché Pasa

    Once again we see the phenomenon of the President of Nothing, utterly powerless to command or stop the new-coup in Venezuela — among other things — because those more powerful than he are in charge: the Kochs, Hillary, Nancy, no doubt that evil Nuland Woman, and Gina of the CIA. Pence, of course, and Pompeo posture and pose, but they’re not in charge either.

    The nonentity selected to rule in Venezuela will have to show his mettle to the Owners, preferably in blood, much blood including that of the Maduros and the poor. It’s how these things are done, how they’ve always been done, and the President of Nothing will dance his jig, and celebrate himself as Victor Over Tyranny…

    A fine little war, no?

  35. Z

    There’s almost no way they can send ground forces over there … that is almost an incapability at this point … and what are they going to bomb through the air? Maybe Venezuelan air bases or something like that, I guess. I think it is very unlikely that the U.S. is going to get directly involved in a military conflict with Venezuela though. Too much risk and not enough chances of success.

    It will be economic warfare for the most part, starving out the people with promises of relief if Maduro goes that will help the new rulers establish support and personal riches to them if they privatize the oil companies. That and the CIA working behind the scenes trying to arrange the coronation of the new rulers.


  36. S Brennan


  37. S Brennan

    z, pasa

  38. S Brennan


    I would think military action would take the form of a blockade and no-fly zone. Basically, what Obama/Hillary did to Qaddafi. In spite of asap’s partisan nonsense, it’s clear the [D-R]-Elite/Media/Deep-state, [but I repeat myself] are onboard for the ensuing bloodshed.

    As for ground troops, I believe we, [and by that I mean the “intelligence” agencies], already have a couple thousand “contractors” “advising” the “peaceful-opposition” with funding/training/arming…just like Obama/Hillary did in Libya/Ukraine/Syria.

    Perhaps President Pence, in the spirit of “bipartisanship”, could give Hillary the honors of plunging a bayonet into Maduro while quoting Caesar…let’s see…how about “Which death is preferably to every other?” followed by that cackle of hers.

    Of Note; only one [D] Prez candidate is on record as being opposed to this “regime-change-V9.0″…and no it ain’t Bernie bro, not Sister Kamala and no, not Pocahontas…

    BTW, since the board’s sophists will attempt to put words in my mouth, I am an FDRist*, not a Socialist.

    An FDRist believes a well regulated free market, a social safety net and government programs to provide for the “common good”.

  39. S Brennan

    RC still being censored

  40. different clue

    FDRist is a fine word. New Deal Reactionary is a fine phrase. I sometimes identify myself as a New Deal Reactionary.

    The New Deal was a good deal for most of us. I want my New Deal back.

    I would note that in Sanders’s little statement on the topic which lead off with all the ways that Maduro is so nasty, and why there must be democracy and stuff; that he did finish off with a couple of sentences on why we must never ever invade, however. People who read far enough would get to that part after wading through all the Maduro-so-nasty stuff.

    ( I am not in any “solidarity with Chavmadurismo”. I just don’t care what the Chavmaduristas do to Venezuela. It really truly is Not My Problem).

    Since the comment a few comments above didn’t mention who the best no-recreational-foreign-wars candidate might be , I will guess that it is considered to be Tulsi Gabbard. And indeed the whole Establishment Sewage Lagoon is trying to un-personise Gabbard as hard as they can.

  41. S Brennan

    Yep, if you were just listening to the [D]-Elite-Media you’d think Tulsi was evil personified and St. Kamala a gift from the Gods…those of who have been following the charade know Kamala is a Clinton-clone [albeit, with skin tone*].

    *And just like Obama, Kamala has the distinction of being considered black, even though her ancestral family has no connection to the American experience of Slavery/Jim-Crow, her mother is [east] Indian and her father Jamaican, both academics from well placed families. Kamala’s “black experience” stems from being one of Willie Brown’s many girlfriends. For which, as CA speaker of the house, Willie was able to bestow political favors/jobs. Back in the Bay Area ’90’s Kamala and Wilie’s fling was quite the talk.

  42. Z

    Kamala Harris is one tight wire. There’s no way she’ll stand up to scrutiny. Her whole campaign is going to be of the political infomercial sort: the Oprah-type interviews with the hand fed questions and rehearsals. She’s dangerously delusional to think she has any chance of winning the nomination. She is much smarter, but her pins and needles personality reminds me of Sarah Palin.

    I obviously don’t know if she is on anything or not, but I think it is always important to keep in mind that many, probably the majority, of our rulers in the government, the business world, the legal world, the medical world, the entertainment industry and in the media are on amphetamines. And it is only increasing.


  43. different clue

    testing . . . testing . . .

  44. different clue


    The DemParty wants to prevent anyone like Sanders or Gabbard or Warren from getting nominated. The DemParty currently considers Harris or O’Rourke their most packagable Cardboard Replica Obamas to try running another Obamaform campaign with.

    I think the DemParty considers Harris or O’Rourke a very likely DemNom choice.

  45. Z

    They have a better chance with Beto than Harris. If they try to push Harris through it may break the party. Not that that would be a bad thing.

    There will be little enthusiasm for her. Only the Adderall-Liberals (the Clinton sleaze crew) and the shriekers of misogynism (there’s quite a bit of overlap in those two groups) will back her heavily. More people will hate her than Beto. Harris is much more annoying than him and she’ll pay for the sins of Obama in that being black will not be good enough with African-Americans anymore.


  46. Z

    Kamala Harris will have a tough time with the African-American women vote. I sense she’ll have some real resistance there. It’s only anecdotal, but there already some black women vociferously coming against her and providing good reasons why.


  47. duder

    Missing explication in every analysis of Venezuela, including this otherwise informative discussion, is the fact that the current legitimacy crisis was created by Maduro himself in order to maintain power. In 2016, Maduro convoked a constituent assembly, explicitly against the letter of Hugo Chavez’s constitution, in order to overrule the newly elected opposition controlled congress. Imagine if Trump’s reaction to the 2018 congressional election was to write a new constitution with his supporters to dispense with a democratic controlled congress? Maduro did this with the support of the military, and in political theory that is called a military coup (the coup before the feared military coup). The opposition has abstained from every election since because they refuse to recognize the legitimacy of Maduro’s new constitution and swear allegiance to previous (Hugo Chavez’s!). The US and their allies in Venezuela are simply taking advantage of this crisis.

  48. different clue

    I see that a general here and maybe there is beginning to defect. How total is Maduro’s support within the Armed Forces?

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