Socialism in our life-time: Long Live Hugo Chavez

2013-03-07 08:48

Chavez Hugo was many things to the Latin American people. To the poor, he was a revolutionary, a hero and their leader to prosperity. To the neo-liberals of the world he was an authoritarian leader who stole the country’s resources, predicting that Venezuela had a bleak future.

However, Chavez disappointed them all; with his socialism cause, he claimed ownership of the country’s vast oil wealth and funded anti-poverty and socialism projects. He challenged and expelled free-market adjustments untying the country from the World Bank, IMF and US neo-liberal l chains.

Without a doubt he disappointed those who thought and predicted he will fail when he came to power in 1999. According to the 2012 Economist Intelligence Unit the Venezuela’s inflation-adjusted G.D.P. rose by 5.5 per cent, almost three times the pace that U.S.  In his fourteen year of rule, Chavez had successfully fought poverty and boosted public investment.

In 1998, one in two people in Venezuela were living in poverty and one in four were living under extreme poverty making their income only $1 a day.  In 2011, 12 years of Chavez’s rule the proportion had fallen to one in four living in poverty to one in seven living under extreme poverty these statistics can be found from Venezuelan National Institute and confirmed  by Mark and Jake's paper from the Washington Center for Economic Policy Research.

According to the I.M.F, the debt-to-G.D.P. ratio is 45%: and this makes Venezuela a country with a relatively little public debt standing at 9.8% of GDP as compared to its enemy US which its public debt stands at 75% to the GDP.

The current economic expansion began when the government got control over the national oil company in the first quarter of 2003. Since then, real (inflation-adjusted) GDP has nearly doubled, growing by 94.7 percent in 5.25 years, or 13.5 percent annually.

Most of this growth has been in the non-oil sector of the economy, and the private sector has grown faster than the public sector.

During the current economic expansion, the poverty rate has been cut by more than half, from 54 percent of households in the first half of 2003 to 26 percent at the end of 2008.

Extreme poverty has fallen even more, by 72 percent. These poverty rates measure only cash income, and do not take into account increased access to health care or education.

Over the entire decade, the percentage of households in poverty has been reduced by 39 percent and extreme poverty by more than half.

Inequality, as measured by the Gini index, has also fallen substantially. The index has fallen to 41 in 2008, from 48.1 in 2003 and 47 in 1999. This represents a large reduction in inequality.

Real (inflation-adjusted) social spending per person more than tripled from 1998-2006.

From 1998-2006, infant mortality has fallen by more than one-third. The number of primary care physicians in the public sector increased 12-fold from 1999-2007, providing health care to millions of Venezuelans who previously did not have access.

There have been substantial gains in education, especially higher education, where gross enrolment rates more than doubled from 1999-2000 to 2007-2008.

The labour market also improved substantially over the last decade, with unemployment dropping from 11.3 percent to 7.8 percent. During the current expansion it has fallen by more than half. Other labour market indicators also show substantial gains.

Over the past decade, the number of social security beneficiaries has more than doubled.

Over the decade, the government’s total public debt has fallen from 30.7 to 14.3 percent of GDP.

There is a lot to learn from Hugo Chavez’s legacy. Indeed he proved to the world and his country that there are other options other than liberalism.  The poor will forever remember him for standing firm against the so called New World Order and showed us all how flawed and disorderly it its.

Those who support the cause of alienating poverty, sharing the wealth and resources of the state with the people and those oppose world anarchy created by the US have a mandate to continue and further champion the course to socialism .



AB praises selfless skipper

2010-11-21 18:15

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