Re: (OPE-L) Re: Paresh Chattopadhyay 'Capital, The Progenitor of Socialism'

From: Rakesh Bhandari (rakeshb@STANFORD.EDU)
Date: Mon Dec 29 2003 - 10:41:09 EST

>Paul B wrote:
>>  It is very important that exchanges are based on facts as you are aware. I
>>  attach 3 articles on Venezuela, 1 written a week after the defeated coup
>>  attempt against the Chavez Government, and anothers following the
>>  subsequent
>>  at the 'economic' coup attempt - the lock out - . Since you often send us
>>  useful articles I hope you'll enjoy these. They are in Corel Word Perfect.
>For those who don't have Corel Perfect (such as myself), I think one of the
>articles that you included as an attachment is at:
>Not all exchanges are based on facts and, in any event, 'facts' are
>sometimes difficult to determine,  BUT  when there are two sets of
>contradictory 'facts' being put forward -- one by the bourgeois press,
>local reactionaries (gusanos) and representatives of imperialist governments
>and another set being put forward by the representatives of millions
>of poor working people in struggle against imperialism  and by
>independent progressive observers from other nations -- then the decision
>about which account to accept shouldn't be all that difficult for

There is not a lot of conflict about the facts. Chavez raised
royalties and insisted on minority foreign ownership of some upstream
operations. But this article does not deny that what he took he also
gave back to foreign investors and foreign oil companies. They got
more control of downstream operations along with all kinds of tax
breaks and incentives. Nor do these articles deny that the state oil
company is exporting an ever smaller percentage of the oil.
I also think the whole idea that OPEC, with the coopration of Chavez,
can set the price of oil is simply simple-minded and wrong. While NYT
reporters now understand this, it is not propaganda from the
imperialist press. To the extent that the revolutionary press repeats
this myth, it is simply wrong.
We still do not have a good account of the status of labor rights
under Chavez. We do know that he fired 18,000 workers (!)in name of
their all being stooges of the imperialists.

>Despite questions which I raised before, I want to emphasize that we
>are fundamentally in agreement on the nature of the struggle in  Venezuela.
>In solidarity, Jerry

Yes, I dissent.


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