The Bishop and the Butterfly: Murder, Politics, and the End of the Jazz Age

    Traits of Despotism, Republican Party and Venezuela

    I was reading about the collapse of the Venezuelan health system here, and noted almost all the comments were gloating right wing Hillary, Obama haters who had no grasp of how similar the methods of the totalitarian Chavez/Maduro government of Venezuela are to those of the GOP.  And how dissimilar they are to the actions of the 8 years of the Obama administration. Including his in rescuing this nation from the last Republican engineered US economic collapse in 2007-8. Obama's actions, which were unambiguously opposed by the GOP, the Party that brought on the 'great recession' on their watch.

    George Orwell described totalitarianism, absolute rule by a Party, which is closely related to and the end stage goal of despotism. Orwell: A totalitarian state is in effect a theocracy, and its ruling caste, in order to keep its position, has to be thought of as infallible.... Totalitarianism demands, in fact, the continuous alteration of the past, and in the long run probably demands a disbelief in the very existence of objective truth.

    I used that quote before when the Trump campaign created this history in explaining their way out of Trump's years of 'birther' lying on Obama's birth certificate:  "Mr. Trump did a great service to the President and the country by bringing closure to the issue..." A Big Lie if there ever was one.

    Venezuela and Big Lies:

    Venezuela is in economic trouble because the Party of Chavez has told big lies about his government and what it has accomplished, and has lied about who or what is at fault for the economic collapse, see below.

    Republicans and Big Lies:

    In the American economic collapse of 2008, the GOP did the same until the Dow was dropping by hundreds of points every day and banks were seizing up because of bad loans made under the deregulation mantra of the right. Fox News the GOP propaganda outlet, Hannity told big lies and denied that the GOP had run the economy over the cliff. Until the final days when it was clear to even the most brainwashed Fox News believer.

    The lies ended and reality finally did bite, and President Bush asked for a blank check His proposal, first unveiled six days ago, would amount to the most sweeping economic intervention by the government since the Great Depression.

    Trump lies all the time, and both his supporters, 'enemies', and his own staff expect it and try to interpret what he means, or if he means anything.

    Another facet of despotism is, as Orwell says above, to never fail, never take the blame, since the days of goat sacrifice in antiquity, that has been done with scapegoating.

    Venezuela Scapegoating:

    August 2015 : Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro pledged yesterday evening to share evidence in the coming days of the United States’ “Plan Vulture”, which he claims is currently destabilizing leftist Latin American governments through economic sabotage. 

    Republicans Scapegoating:

    Google search: Trump blames US economy and climate change on China.

    Trumps wall and his attacks on Hispanics and Muslims also are a scapegoating ploy, to raise hate and give targets for it, and present himself as the only one who will 'take care of them'.

    Venezuela's Maduro arresting, locking up opponents:

    NPR 2015: Maduro is lashing out at critics. Last month, police arrested Antonio Ledezma, the opposition mayor of Caracas, for allegedly taking part in a U.S.-backed conspiracy

    Trump on arresting opponents:

    Trump: "Hillary will be under investigation for years".

    Mobs and 'Lock her up' chants.

    Venezuelan democracy under threat:

    “In Venezuela, we see a majority of the population suffering and a country with so much wealth having a population that fights each day for its survival,” Schulz added in Bogota, speaking in German after talks with President Juan Manuel Santos.

    United States, North Carolina under GOP rule a failing democracy:

    North Carolina’s overall electoral integrity score of 58/100 for the 2016 election places us alongside authoritarian states and pseudo-democracies like Cuba, Indonesia and Sierra Leone. If it were a nation state, North Carolina would rank right in the middle of the global league table – a deeply flawed, partly free democracy that is only slightly ahead of the failed democracies that constitute much of the developing world.

    Venezuelan health care system in collapse under Maduro.

    Venezuelans are fleeing to Brazil for medical care, overwhelming its hospitals and

    US Health Care under Threat from Republicans:

    American hospital associations and groups and GOP governors plead to not end Obamacare or results will be dire for US healthcare.

    Keep in mind, Obamacare is tied into reimbursement to hospitals and doctors for Medicare, and has created revenue from increased Medicare taxes on earners over $250,000, and a repeal of Obamacare will put Medicare funding in jeopardy, which the GOP would like to do by turning Medicare into a voucher program.

    Krugman on GOP plans to gut Obamacare, Snatching Health Care Away from Millions:

    So let’s refute that narrative in advance. Obamacare has, in fact, been a big success — imperfect, yes, but it has greatly improved (and saved) many lives. And all indications are that this success is sustainable, that the teething problems of health reform weren’t fatal and were well on their way to being solved at the end of 2016.

    If, as seems all too likely, a health care debacle is imminent, blame must be placed where it belongs: on Donald Trump and the people who put him over the top.

    Big lies, ideology trumps facts and reality, scapegoating, threatening political opponents, and giving targets for hate. These are tools of ideological despots, and it doesn't matter if the despots are left or right, the end results are the same.

    Although the US is not headed to the dire straits of Venezuela, which is dependent almost completely on oil revenue, despots in charge in our government will not increase prosperity except for themselves and their backers.

    They will bring disruption, uncertainty and financial and social crisis. Being despots, they will not accept accountability, they will not change, they must be removed from office.




    From what I know, Chavez was actually pretty good, but Maduro has made everything Chavez's opponents said about him come true.

    Maduro was the 'hand picked successor' of Chavez. 

    Doesn't really discredit Chavez's own work - people often choose poor successors. Hey, Lenin got Stalin, a distinct step down, and Yeltsin the complacent buffoon chose Putin the scheming FSB guy who likely participated in blowing up a building with 300 civilians dead to rise to the top in a security fear takeover.

    Maduro is the head of the Chavez Party, was picked by Chavez....however......I agree and sincerely doubt the country would be anywhere near as bad as it is if Chavez had lived, as Maduro seems to be the biggest idiot in the country. Chavez was no idiot.

    I read this in the NYT from Germany, on Putin, but easy to see the similarities between KGB tactics of 'Zersetzung' and GOP/Trump/Fox News:

    The methods of Zersetzung are to cast doubt on the basic norms of the Western liberal order and its institutions; to distort and thereby discredit the purposes of the European Union, NATO and the free-market economy; to erode the credibility of the free press and free elections. The means of Zersetzung include character assassination and, through the spreading of lies and fake news, the creation of a gray zone of doubt in which facts struggle to survive.

    We have seen all of this before, employed by the K.G.B. and the East German Stasi: psychological warfare, rumor-mongering, schemes to bribe politicians and then expose them as criminals. They used it both internally, against dissidents, and externally, against Western enemies. Mr. Putin and his former K.G.B. colleagues should know that, this time, we have a better sense of their dirty tricks, and how they have updated Zersetzung for the internet.

    Relying so heavily on our 'Fake News' MSM propagandists for your rants is not as convincing as it once was. Trump has shown they can be confronted or ignored and all thay can do is spew more fake news propaganda because they have few if any facts.

    Accusing Nicholas Maduro of being 'hand picked' seems to ignore that he was already Venezuela's VP and had worked his way to leadership positions before being appointed VP on his way to being elected president. On the other hand the leaked DNC emails and other reports showed clearly how hand picking is done by the Clintonite  party over the wishes of the rubes who thought they had a choice.

    Chavistas belong to the PSUV which Maduro now leads in opposition to the MUD which now controls congress through democratic elections. The MUD is where you find crazy, greedy, racist, neo-fascist capitalists who still control three quarters of the Venezuelan economy. This is where Chavez may have made his greatest failure by not nationalizing most of this sector especially the critical food and distribution sectors.

    The Chavistas made incredible progress in reducing poverty, hunger, poor housing and lack of democracy in Venezuela but they have failed to address the curse of oil wealth, Dutch Disease a very nasty malady resistant to treatment.


    The Chavistas have the curse of a reality denying rigid warped ideology, the same malady of Hillary hating Trump believers.

    GOP eviscerates Office Congressional Ethics legislated into existence by the Democratically controlled 110th Congress in 2008.

    Don't need no ethics when you are Makin America Great Again!

    Ethics and despotism don't mix!!


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