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wednesday, august 24, 2005
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Author Topic: wednesday, august 24, 2005  (Read 10350 times)
roxisgod
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« on: January 19, 2008, 07:01:47 EST »

I just found out about this webcomic a few weeks ago, and have been browing through it every now and then. I've enjoyed it very much, really, since few things can be as entertaining as dissing the government (and if you'e from the USA, its even better).
Then I read the strip posted on wednesday, august 24, 2005. http://www.idrewthis.org/d/20050824.html suddenly D. C. Simpson doesn't seem so well informed. I hope he can read this...
I'll explain: I happen to be from Venezuela. Not only that, but my uncle used to be the embassador in the U.S., then he moved on to England. He's crrently in Spain. My dad, on the other side, is one of the main antigovernment figures in the country. He used to have a T.V. show where he would speak about historical facts and subtly imply that history proves that Chavez is on the road to disaster. few people could have a better perspective of what's going on. For his history show, he started being harrassed by government officials, getting threatening emails, and even tailed. Our phone lines were intervened, so that the government could hear al our conversations. Finally my dad, (who, by the way, was doing the show for free, rejecting money for ads because it would lessen the integrity of the show) had to cancel his show, when he started getting emails threatening to kidnap ME if he continued doing them. I was being followed, too. This was back in 2004. Our phone conversations are still being illegally listened to.
But enough about that, let's talk about the economy. more than 90% of venezuelans live well below the poverty line, in little shacks called "ranchos" that they build with bricks, mud, or zinc. Every time it rains, most of the houses are terribly damaged. Venezuela is a tropical country, so this happens quite a lot. This has caused an increase in crime that has made Caracas, the capital, one of the most dangerous cities in the world. I don't know anyone who hasn't been robbed at gunpoint. We do, however, prefer regular thiefs, because the police is so much worse. Tickets aren't given anymore, police men just stop you and take all your money. If you refuse to pay them, chances are they'll beat you up, claim to have found drugs in your vehicle, take all your money anyway, and leave. That's nothing compared to the national guard, though, who illegally set up a base and x-ray machine in the airport, which they used to steal from tourists and  passengers. It happened to my family. They took all our money, as well as our passports. We were stuck in the airport. Thanks to the airport guards (the legal ones) we managed to get a video tape from the security camera that showed the moment when the national guard stole from. We had their names and knew their faces. After finding a cab driver who was willing to take us back and wait while my dad found money to pay him with, he went to the police with all the evidence of the theft. They laughed at him and told him to go home. This happened almost every day the national guard was at the airport.
Let's move on, though, to Chavez's favorite speech: "the rich people," (medium class who can afford proper living conditions) "have stolen all our money from us! The tyrant white man wants to stop all of you from ever getting any money!" etc etc... segregation is the new in thing in Venezuela. A few months ago a member of the government declared that "all the real venezuelans have curly black hair and dark skin." Fun fact: venezuela, like the U.S.A., is a country of mixed population, immigrants (this includes the spanish and the black slaves that colonized the country) and naturals have been living together for so long, free of racism, that race had never become an issue. No one if of just one race. Until now: everyone with light skin has been tagged by the government as "evil tyrants" (this is a phrase Chavez has actually used). To once again bring personal reference up, I recently visited my family (I am, at the moment, living in Spain, because there is no hope for a proper future in Venezuela). When I got to immigration, though, and gave the soldier (they are like joker cards, and have been assigned every job the government doesn't trust civilians to do) my venezuelan passport, he looked at me suspiciously and asked "where are you from?" Marveling at the incredible stupidity of a man holding my venezuelan passport, i answered "Uh, Venezuela." He once again stared at me, my pale skin and fine, light brown hair, and asked "WHERE in Venezuela." "uh.. Caracas" That still wasn't good enough for him, though, so, he proceeded to ask me "what part of Caracas?" this is when I realized that he didn't believe me. I told him what part, a middle class, suburban area, and he stared at me a bit more, "that explains it. You're a high class immigrant." You can imagine how angry I was...
Still, that's not enough. Since elected president, Chavez had been declaring that he would stay in office until 2021 (which is obviously illegal n a country where no president can stay in office for more that one term at a time). A couple of years ago he changed his mind, and decided that "people have the right to vote for their lifelong president".. He has gone mad with power... Recently, he lost a referendum, which, had he won, would approve a new constitution (he has already changed it 3 times) which would allow him to, in fact, be president for life. He had a tantrum very much like Hitler's famous one, and appeared on T.V., with bloody knuckles, stating that the opposition had only one "for now...". A new sight in many spots around Caracas are giant signs with that phrase written on them.
My country celebrated, a few months ago, when the spanish president finally told Chavez to shut up. (if you didn't see it on the news, you missed out on a fun image. They were at an international meeting and, after Chavez decided to insult the former spanish president and ignored the current president's requests that he respect the spanish people, the king suddenly stood up and yelled "SHUT UP ALREADY!!" awesome ^^ someone should've done it sooner).
This very long post was a small introduction to the disasters that are taking place in my country, just to let you people know that, no, Chavez is NOT a socialist, that he DOESN'T have tremendous concerns for the people of our country, and that, really, most people would be glad if the U.S. DID in fact kill him. So, no, I really don't think that Jesus would hit anyone who said that. At least it would help the country begin to deal with the numerous disasters it is going through.
That said, I don't support the idea of killing anyone, as Chavez is not a cause, but an effect. A violent, almost illiterate ass with no education, given the chance to run a country. Oh, and he's so corrupt he's been buying the support of other countries (like the whole briefcase full of money for the Argentinian president thing...)

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c'est la vie
Medivh
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« Reply #1 on: January 19, 2008, 08:05:53 EST »

tl;dr, so apologies if I sound like an arse.

What I want to know is, would you prefer Chavez or Pinochet? Because, if the US gets involved in your country, Pinochet is the guy you're going to get.
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And if i catch you comin' back my way
I'm gonna serve it to you
And that ain't what you want to hear
But that's what I'll do
-- "Seven Nation Army", The White Stripes

So what you're telling me is that LTV's fudge factor means more than it's independent variable?
Yes...
Bringerofpie
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« Reply #2 on: January 19, 2008, 10:39:15 EST »

I think the point of the comic was that a reverend (or minister?) was preaching that someone should be killed, whereas Jesus himself was staunchly anti-violent.
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Andrei
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« Reply #3 on: January 19, 2008, 11:03:56 EST »

I don't think DC was voicing any support for Chavez, he was referring to a specific event in the US where a clergyman voiced support for a political assassination, and I think Christ would at the very least disapprove.

That being said, I'm really glad for this message. It's always hard to tell what's going on in a country from the outside, and there are quite a few people on this forum with a weakness for Chavez.

Personally, I never liked Chavez. My country suffered for twenty long years the reign of a "violent, almost illiterate ass with no education".

In fact, quite a few of Chavez's mannerisms remind me of him. Ceausescu was also quite fond of vociferous speeches (rants), physical prestations (such as striking the table as he spoke), media appearences, etc...

That being said, I don't think good things can come from afar. An assassination might even turn him into a martyr. I think Venezuelans should depose the sleazer democratically (while they still can), and let him fade away from memory.

Such is, I think, the best way to deal with would-be dictators.
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He looked severely at me for awhile, then, grabbing his moustaches, he said:
- Boss, with all due respect, you are naive and pedant.

"Alexis Zorba", by Nikos Kazantzakis (translation mine)
Darkeforce
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« Reply #4 on: January 19, 2008, 17:29:40 EST »

How does any of that change the fact that someone who claimed to speak for Jesus -- a proclaimed pacifist who believed that everyone had a right to life -- was calling for the death of one of God's Children? It didn't matter that he was talking about Chavez; the point of the cartoon was that a so-called "man of God" had made a statement that was against the beliefs he claimed to have. He could have been talking about George Bush, and it would still be an insult to what Jesus had taught.
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roxisgod
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« Reply #5 on: January 21, 2008, 16:20:17 EST »

you forgot to take the last statement into account:
"That said, I don't support the idea of killing anyone, as Chavez is not a cause, but an effect."


I don't want the US to come and kill Chavez... it would be disastrous. I DO get that the joke was about the minister saying that.. although, for us, it's become quite normal as even ministers are urging people to act up in Venezuela.
What I DO find necessary is to let you know what is going on in a country that doesn't get the chance to tell the international community about its problems because the government won't allow it. Living in Spain I've realized that so-called leftists actually support this ass based on the simple fact that he speaks of socialism. I know you people lean to the left when it comes to politics (so do I, really), but come on, you have to realize that a system like that simply CANNOT work, it's too easy to be corrupted.. when making everyone equal, it tends to be equally poor and miserable. Socialists and communists in first world countries don't tend take this into account. Rather than find out more information on what is going on in a certain country they'll just go "socialism? cool! that guy rocks!" (i've heard this comment before.. it's frustrating). At one point this spanish guy tried to convince me that he knew more about venezuela than i did because he'd been there for a week on vacation (that is, went to the jungle in a tourist complex, then to the beach in safe areas) and read about it in the spanish newspaper. When i explained the actual situation he called me a liar. He went on to say that it is perfectly legal and democratic for a president to be "president for life". It's opinions based on nothing that bother me, so i decided to give some information on which to base these opinions.

And, once again, although i particularly DON'T support the idea of anyone killing Chavez because i am convinced that the actual political situation in venezuela has more to do with the terrible ignorance, laziness, greed and corruption of the venezuelan people, i HAVE heard MANY MANY MANY people wishfully say "if only bush would do something useful and kill chavez."
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Darkeforce
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« Reply #6 on: January 21, 2008, 18:01:10 EST »


And, once again, although i particularly DON'T support the idea of anyone killing Chavez because i am convinced that the actual political situation in venezuela has more to do with the terrible ignorance, laziness, greed and corruption of the venezuelan people, i HAVE heard MANY MANY MANY people wishfully say "if only bush would do something useful and kill chavez."

What about those who say, "If only Chavez would do something useful and kill Bush!"?

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"Going to War for Peace,
is like Screwing for Virginity."

"Politics. It's like having evil cake, and eating it, too" - Torg - Sluggy Freelance
Medivh
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« Reply #7 on: January 21, 2008, 18:14:22 EST »

Additionally, someone (possibly Chavez) has given you the wrong end of the stick when it comes to socialism. You're describing communism, where everyone is equal but some are more equal. Socialism is usually capitalistic, but with a guaranteed minimum standard of living provided by the state.

That said, if you hang around, you'll find that most of us dislike what Chavez is doing in terms of control of power. You'll also be another voice against Psy. Smiley
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And if i catch you comin' back my way
I'm gonna serve it to you
And that ain't what you want to hear
But that's what I'll do
-- "Seven Nation Army", The White Stripes

So what you're telling me is that LTV's fudge factor means more than it's independent variable?
Yes...
Darkeforce
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« Reply #8 on: January 21, 2008, 18:25:08 EST »

Additionally, someone (possibly Chavez) has given you the wrong end of the stick when it comes to socialism. You're describing communism, where everyone is equal but some are more equal. Socialism is usually capitalistic, but with a guaranteed minimum standard of living provided by the state.

That said, if you hang around, you'll find that most of us dislike what Chavez is doing in terms of control of power. You'll also be another voice against Psy. Smiley

That's Soviet-style communism you're talking about there. Actual communism has not existed on earth at any point of time, and it is the step beyond Socialism for a completely equal state/republic for everyone.
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"Going to War for Peace,
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"Politics. It's like having evil cake, and eating it, too" - Torg - Sluggy Freelance
Medivh
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« Reply #9 on: January 21, 2008, 19:01:02 EST »

Did I read wrongly then? I was responding to the "socialism == everyone is equal" statement. And borrowing from George Orwell, of course Tongue
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And if i catch you comin' back my way
I'm gonna serve it to you
And that ain't what you want to hear
But that's what I'll do
-- "Seven Nation Army", The White Stripes

So what you're telling me is that LTV's fudge factor means more than it's independent variable?
Yes...
roxisgod
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« Reply #10 on: February 10, 2008, 05:13:23 EST »

ah, orwell <3
i guess it's just the whole close to home thing. The situation in my country tends to be terribly ignored because of good international campaigning from the government and ignorance from most people. So I end up having to explain to everyone who realizes where I'm from that things aren't as great as they think they are. And, as self proclaimed prophecies tend to go, I end up assuming everyone feels the same and being eternally on the defensive.
Also, there is no communism OR socialism in venezuela. It's called "bolivarian socialism" or "socialism of the 21st century" by the government... I've yet to find out what the premises or ideals behind these are (although the name is altered precisely because it differs from both socialism and communism).. they seem to change with every new constitution... at least they keep a slight touch on reality by not calling it [any kind of] communism.

Yeah, those who realize that you can't just rely on other countries (myself included) are quite aware of the martyr problem.. it would probably just end up making others imitate him in the future. Democratic disposal, however, has become less and less of an option. He is very set on being "president for life". It's a fine line that's very easily missed here...
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« Reply #11 on: February 11, 2008, 04:45:20 EST »

I'm not sure things are as bad as they seem.

If Chavez blatently ignores the democratic process then he will become much less powerful internationally.  Were he to become an autocrat his support from left-wing parties in the west would disappear quickly.
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Laserlips
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« Reply #12 on: March 02, 2008, 16:49:23 EST »

If you really believe in Christianity, you reconcile the fact that Christ preached "Love thy neighbor" in person, but annihilated Sodom and Gomorrah, sent multiple invasions into Israel, and repeatedly took the lives of people for seemingly trivial acts (such as steadying the Ark).

I am NOT supporting this particular minister, although I think that everyone has a "better-dead" list.  Thankfully, most people don't get to act on the contents of those lists.

My point is simply that in the Christian worldview, God and Christ are responsible for many, many deaths.  That phrase takes on a differnet meaning when you understand more about what happens AFTER death, but God taking lives is by no means uncommon or improbable.

It's the old "why does evil exist" paradox: how can an omniscient, omnipotent, and ultimately benevolent God allow evil to exist in the world?  Either God cannot exist, or he has a different definition of "evil" than we do.
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rogue-kun
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« Reply #13 on: March 02, 2008, 18:53:48 EST »

If you really believe in Christianity, you reconcile the fact that Christ preached "Love thy neighbor" in person, but annihilated Sodom and Gomorrah, sent multiple invasions into Israel, and repeatedly took the lives of people for seemingly trivial acts (such as steadying the Ark).

that one is simple, We have simply via Christ coming to know him better.  Though it interesting you use Sodom and Gomorrah, as the the core of that parable is god object to inhospitality.
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Darkeforce
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« Reply #14 on: March 02, 2008, 19:30:18 EST »

The funny thing is there is more than just one bible. The Sodom and Gomorrha thing happened in the Jewish bible, not the Christian bible. There's a reason Christians aren't called Genesisites, or Abrahamites. They are Christians, meaning they follow the teachings of Christ, not Abraham or the other multitudes that wrote the Jewish Bible ("Old Testament"). In truth, the only real relevance of the Old Testament to Christians are the prophesies that predicted Christ's coming, thus showing that he is the true Messiah.

So there really is no conflict between the Jewish God and God, the father of Christ. For all we know, it was a different God giving prophesy to followers of a sometimes-malevolent spirit. It's best to not get caught up in the ramifications of the Old Testament if you're a Christian. If you're a bible scholar, then sure, go nuts with the analogies and philosophies of stories that tell of the development of a nomadic race, through the eyes of many different people.
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"Going to War for Peace,
is like Screwing for Virginity."

"Politics. It's like having evil cake, and eating it, too" - Torg - Sluggy Freelance
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