Tag Archives: majority report

Who Was Hugo Chávez?

7 Mar

Hugo/ BolivarI guess this is the responsible conservative dismissal of Hugo Chávez.

“The ultimate populist,” Richard Haass deemed Chávez, who led a “massive redistribution of wealth” domestically and also had an active foreign policy. “His vision for latin america that was extraordinarily radical. He was not democratic, to say the least,” Haass added, noting that the region now faces much uncertainty, particularly because Chavez didn’t quite put the country on a long-term track.

In a subsequent conversation, Haass lampoons Chávez as “complete theater”, a “larger than life” “leftwing caudillo”, and “Castro with oil” who contributed nothing of lasting value to Venezuela. Greg Grandin takes issue with this sort of “two lefts” dodge the United States has used in South America.

JUAN GONZÁLEZ: And one point I made in my column in the Daily News today on Chávez is that, to the degree that he was seen by the United States and Europe as the most radical of Latin American leaders, he created space for an enormous diversity of other left-oriented leaders that seemed almost more acceptable to the West up against the figure, the lightning-rod figure, of Chávez.

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Today’s Kindle Sample #7

30 Jan

As it’s turned out, The New Hate is less about prejudice than its about America’s long-standing penchant for conspiratorial thinking, its never-ending quest for scapegoats. Hate groups have been active on the periphery of American politics since colonial times; many of them have exerted a significant, albeit largely unacknowledged, influence on its mainstream. Their targets haven’t  just been people of other races, national origins, and religious faiths (or lack thereof?) Income levels, levels of schooling, sexual preference, gender, and political affiliation have all sufficed at one time or another to mark a person as belonging to a group that is dangerously “other”.

The New Hate: A History of Fear and Loathing on the Populist Right by Arthur Goldwag (via The Majority Report)

And, as an added IW bonus, check out my podcast cherry-popper, Karl Mamer’s, The Conspiracy Skeptic for the new podcast with Michael Bohler on “A Year in Conspiracy“.

Don’t Fear Debt

13 Dec

I highly recommend Sam Seder’s interview with David Graeber on the history of debt on today’s Majority Report. Don’t listen to Sam – it’s not too weedy!

Every economics textbook says the same thing: Money was invented to replace onerous and complicated barter systems—to relieve ancient people from having to haul their goods to market. The problem with this version of history? Continue reading

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