Re: [OPE] Venezuela and Human Rights Watch

From: Paula <>
Date: Wed Sep 24 2008 - 17:56:24 EDT

Jerry: "In the absence of such a credible, independent means of investigation, we should not automatically accept what is being suggested by right-wing agencies and imperialist states. We should demand *evidence* which is credible and verifiable."

Fine. But it looks like some of the evidence presented by HRW has been verified by credible sources. For example, their report notes that:

"Political discrimination has been openly practiced in the state oil company, PDVSA. PDVSA fired more than 18,000 employees who participated in a two-month-long strike in 2002 in a mass reprisal for legitimate strike activity [clip]

"In the aftermath of the oil strike, PDVSA purged its ranks of thousands of workers who participated in the strike. The government justified the mass firings by arguing that the workers' sole objective was "to overthrow the President." When the ILO reviewed the case, however, it determined that reasons for the work stoppage included worker demands relating to government economic policies and it therefore fell within the scope of legitimate trade union activity. The ILO concluded that the mass dismissal of thousands of workers and refusal to rehire them constituted reprisals in violation of international law."

Jerry: "Do you favor workers' control, nationalization, and land reform?"

I don't know enough about Venezuela to be able to tell whether there really is any kind of workers' control in place; the PDVSA example just mentioned suggests the opposite. As for nationalization and land reform, these are often carried out by capitalists for their own reasons, sometimes progressive and sometimes not. Even the Bush administration has been doing a fair amount of nationalizing of late.


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Received on Wed Sep 24 17:59:21 2008

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