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Ken Livingstone and Hugo Chavez similarities

By Aleksander Boyd

London 25.02.06 | Both share antisemitic sentiments; both abuse and offend journalists; both support rogue regimes and figures associated with terrorism; both use unlawfully office and public resources to advance political agendas; both have demonstrated contempt towards minorities; both despise the current US administration with a passion and both react in exactly the same manner when caught red handed. One must be convinced that should a psychological profiling of the two be performed more similarities will surface. One reigns supreme in a banana republic, whilst the other does accordingly, to a certain extent, in the seat of one of the world's most stable democracies.

There are, however, marked dissimilarities between the systems in which both operate. One has just been suspended for a month -he ought have been sacked, due to his antisemitic remarks, will have to pay the legal costs of his blunder (and rightly so), an apology is expected of him, for having misused GLA's website to praise his tinpot dictator friend, but, most probably, these minor reprimands will suffice. The other, well, that one can do what he pleases -as he's accountable to no one, to the extent that he has announced publicly that he may stay in office for life, just like his Cuban mentor. Participatory democracy at its best. Such behaviour is the dream of Red Ken types; imagine cloaking oneself in democratic legitimacy and remain unaccountable and in office for life; the stuff leftists' novels are made of.

For some unfortunate reason, some UK press has given tribune to the 'concerns' of the looney fringes of the Labour Party. These racists ignoramuses are now seeking explanations from Tony Blair, for having stated that Venezuela would do well in observing international standards if it is to be respected in the intermational arena. Why such remarks irks some is an issue philosophers can ponder about. For a Venezuelan, like myself, is not grief cause. What does upset me in the extreme is Chavez's love affair with Castro, Ahmadinejad, FARC and other elements. What pisses me even more, is the manner in which he uses the resources and monies that belong to 25 million Venezuelans to buy consciences, love and support from pariahs. And as stated elsewhere, if the state of affairs in my country is cause of angst to some, I am more than willing to clarify, explain and demonstrate, facts in hand, that Chavez is nothing but a deranged, tacky caricature of a dictator, whose only legacy, after seven years in office, is to have brought misery, hatred and violence to Venezuela.

No society is free of Red Kens or Hugos and no system seems infallible enough to prevent such individuals to reach office. What remains to be done is to perfect the mechanisms to forbid entry to the political fray to such unworthy characters. Regarding Venezuela, Blair should pay no heed to the slurs of Old Labour, for it does not represent us, nor is it allegiance to Hugo Chavez welcomed.

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