Cops Behaving Badly: Back to School Bathroom Bomb Scare Edition

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The front page of an official Texas website promoting abstinence. Think it will work?

Ugh, Texas…what the fuck is wrong with you? Whatever it is, even your police are suffering from it now:

Parents in Texas are upset after police reportedly “swarmed” a Texas high school because a girl may have had a miscarriage in one of the bathrooms.

KDFW reported that a school custodian notified the principal at Woodrow Wilson High School after finding a “possible fetus” in one of the bathroom stalls on Friday.

The principal contacted police, who “swarmed” the school, according to KTVT.

They even sent a helicopter to buzz the skies overhead. Yup, miscarrying in the school washroom is now being treated exactly like a full-fledged terrorist attack. One would think it was a bomb, not blood, in the toilets.

And oh yeah: How about a little religious slut-shaming with that, too?

Dallas Police Department’s Child Abuse Unit detectives were investigating to find out who may have abandoned the fetus. The person involved was being considered a “suspect.”

“We’re reviewing video, talking to the teachers, trying to determine if anybody has any knowledge of any student that may have had something going on in their life, and pray,” Dallas Police Major John Lawton said.

Yeah, that’s right…instead of trying to find the girl and make sure she’s all right, they’re just gonna pray. Pray for that young heathen jezebel who just couldn’t wait until she was married before getting knocked up. She’s being treated as a “suspect”, rather than a girl who may be in need of medical attention.

And the local religious slut-shaming brigade also just HAD to chime in…

Alan Elliott of Baby Moses Dallas explained to KDFW that the mother could have avoided any criminal charges if she had taken advantage of Baby Moses laws by carrying the child to term, and then dropping it off at a safe baby site like a fire station.

“And that’s a happy ending when that happens, because the baby is safe, the mother is protected from any sort of prosecution, so it’s a win-win for both of them,” Elliot noted.

However, it was not immediately clear how far along the pregnancy was, and the cause of the possible miscarriage was not known.

…even though it’s not clear that it was a deliberate abortion. What if it turns out to be an accident?

And why all this horrible talk of prosecuting what must, by now, be one terribly frightened girl?

Well, maybe because Texas is an abstinence-only state. And that’s not going so well for them:

Texas has one of the highest rates of teen pregnancy in the country. Although the teen birth rate has been declining over the past decade, the Lone Star State still has the highest rate of repeat teen births, as an estimated 22 percent of teens who give birth have already had at least one child.

In light of those statistics, how is Texas’ Department of Health hoping to help prevent future unintended pregnancies among young women? By spending $1.2 million to build an abstinence-only website that doesn’t include any mention of contraception.

Yes, I’m sure that will help a lot. In fact, I bet the girl in question was already a beneficiary of just such a paucity of information. Not to mention deathly afraid of seeking birth control, because if anyone found out, the slut-shame brigade would turn out in force and swarm her, just like those stupid cops and their helicopter. Girls who conceal pregnancies tend to be afraid of things like that. Even just telling their own mothers could be the hardest thing in the world to do — especially if Mom is another of those religious freaks who would rather pray for her daughter’s soul than take her to the doctor and make sure her body is all right.

And really — since when is it the police’s duty to play Morally Judgmental Parent?

With a “win-win” framework like that in place, more bathroom miscarriages are all but inevitable.

And now, for a Very Important Message…

…from a very self-righteously indignant dude:

Uh, dude? That’s not a fedora, that’s a trilby. Get your hats straight! And if you’re that irrationally angry about a silly little hat (which, I note, you’re not wearing very well either — either match it to your suit or GTFO), well…who are you to lecture anyone who makes fun of your “class, not swag” d-bag headgear?

(Also, stop with the frantic in-and-out zooming. You’re making me queasy. Pick a focus and stick to it. And for fuck’s sake, learn to hold your camera horizontally, so you don’t get those idiotic black bars down the side, rookie.)

PS: According to David Futrelle, the above video is comedy. Could have fooled me, but oh well. I was already laughing anyway.

A Children’s Treasury of Wingnuttia

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I don’t know what’s funnier…the fact that there’s a book for kids on the “virtues” of open carry, that it’s “frequently bought together” with other forgettable trashery like Raising Boys Feminists Will Hate, or these Amazon.com reviews for it:

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Yes indeed, this book is a classic in the making. I can smell it already. No, wait…that’s just burnt gunpowder and stale flop-sweat. My mistake!

The only thing that can stop a bad guy with a gun…

…is a good guy with a lasso:

In case you can’t see the video, here’s the basic gist:

According to The Atlanta Journal Constitution, deputies said that 25-year-old Celestino Moras showed up drunk at a rodeo in Bartow County on Sunday, and was asked to leave because he was not invited to the event.

The property owner told WSB-TV that Moras pulled out a pistol and opened fire, leaving three shot.

When Moras ran out of bullets, one of the rodeo cowboys reportedly lassoed him. Moras was then beaten by other guests, who tied him up until deputies arrived.

Authorities said that two people were shot in the lower body, and one person was shot in the neck. However, WSB-TV reported that “the three wounded guests suffered only minor injuries and were treated and released from local hospitals.”

A fourth person suffered cuts on the hand from a knife.

Moral of story: Never bring a gun to a knife fight at the OK Corral. Or something like that.

Yee-haw!

God hath spoken; Christians still not listening

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Good morning! If you ever needed proof that God is NOT on the side of blind bigotry, just take a look at how close She came to wiping out one family that decided to try Her patience:

An Arizona family fed up with abortion, homosexuality, taxes and the “state-controlled church” will fly back home Sunday after being lost at sea for months.

Hannah Gastonguay told the Associated Press she and her husband “decided to take a leap of faith and see where God led us.” The family, which included two small children, abandoned the United States and set sail for the island nation of Kiribati in May. They ended up lost in the Pacific Ocean for 91 days.

During the voyage, their boat was damaged by “squall after, squall, after squall.” The damage forced them to head towards the nearer Marquesas Islands, but they made little progress.

Luckily, human mercy saved the day for these lost and benighted souls, who are gullible enough to think (with no evidence whatsoever to support it) that the US government is interfering with religion (actually, it’s quite the other way around, and has been for quite some time). If it had been up to God, they’d have been drowned in true Darwin Award style for their stupidity. As it is, the “God-hating” US government paid to get their sorry God-bothering asses back on home soil. But have they learned their lesson? Oh nooooo:

Hannah Gastonguay said the family will now “go back to Arizona” and “come up with a new plan.”

Please plan to stay put…and while you’re at it, plan to stop reproducing. Isn’t it bad enough that you nearly killed your own innocent kids for the sake of a religious delusion?

Get your own damn sandwich.

So, women now rule the world, and men are oppressed? Courtesy of a Facebook friend, here’s an extremely typical example of how guys who make those claims actually “think” (note the quotes):

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Y’okay. I know this isn’t really a fair fight here, seeing as I’m about to do a battle of wits with an unarmed man. But damn, he’s just begging for an ass-kicking. So I figure I might as well oblige him. Ready? Here goes…

“You’ve never been forced to die in war.”

Yeah, dude, we’ve never fought in a war, never been killed as civilians either, and certainly NEVER been raped to death. Just because women haven’t faced as much historical conscription as men (outside of Israel, maybe), doesn’t mean we didn’t get wiped out too. My mother’s baby sister was forced to die in a war when she was just 11 months old. Of course, she had to do so via malnutrition and dysentery, so there’s that.

“You are not capable of performing the same tasks men do because you lack the ambition and devotion to do a good job at anything. This is why you get paid less.”

Actually, we are more than capable, and we don’t lack “ambition and devotion”. We work twice as hard for half the pay and a quarter of the recognition. There are now more women than men graduating from college. And we don’t get there by sleeping with our profs or batting our eyes at TAs, either. The reason we STILL get paid less is because men can get away with paying us less…and they do. It’s called systemic discrimination; look it up, dude.

“Remember when you weren’t allowed to vote? It’s because you lack the enough logical reasoning skills to take difficult decisions in a sound manner.”

“The enough logical reasoning skills”? What does that even mean? Dude, if you’re gonna pride yourself on your superior reasoning and logic (mad skillz!), shouldn’t you at least learn how to string together a coherent sentence? You know, so you at least LOOK like you have logic and reasoning capacity?

As for the point you’re struggling to make here, it’s also bullshit. Remember all those wars you were being forced to die in while we fragile flowers were sitting safely home, getting raped to death? Product of superior male logic and reasoning, dude. And product of oh-so-superior all-male voting and all-male candidate slates, too.

“You have never ruled the world. Because you lack the enough physical strength and intelligence to lead an army or a nation.”

Again with “the enough”. Dude, if you’re gonna claim superior intelligence — again, learn to string together a coherent sentence, or don’t try to make that argument.

Actually, don’t try to make that argument anyhow. No single individual has ever ruled the world, and none ever will (or should). But if you want rulers of armies and nations, learn to look beyond your own sex once in a while. Jeanne d’Arc organized and led an army at 17. Queen Elizabeth I ruled as an unmarried woman, never relegated to second-class status as a producer of royal heirs. She routinely boasted of her “male brain”, which kept her securely on the throne for 44 years. Queen Victoria ascended the throne of England at 18, and the British Empire grew and prospered under her reign (which she did not abandon to produce heirs and spares at a prodigious rate). Queen Elizabeth II has been on the throne for 61 years now, and may well live to top Queen Victoria’s 63. And don’t get me started on Hatshepsut, the Egyptian queen who crowned herself a pharaoh, and won the respect of her people by her successful forays in both war and peaceful trade. She wasn’t even the first female ruler of Egypt by a long shot!

I’m sorry…what was that you were saying again, dude?

“The only reason you need wimpy support groups (i.e. Feminism) is because of your primal instinct of inferiority.”

“The only reason…is because of”? Again, dude, learn to string together a sentence; that’s fucking pathetic.

BTW, there is no such thing as a “primal instinct of inferiority” peculiar to women; see above. I’m sure that any of the female rulers and leaders I’ve mentioned (who are just a handful among many) would be greatly surprised to find themselves in possession of such a thing. I know I would be!

And if feminism is just a “wimpy support group”, why are you so afraid of it? Why post these moronic, hastily typed screeds if you’re so naturally, primally, instinctually superior? Whom are you trying to convince — us, or yourself? Either way, your flop-sweat is starting to smell.

“You have never invented anything worth mentioning during the last thousands of years of recorded human history. That computer you’re using, the electricity, the house you live in, the car you drive, the job you work for, the gasoline that fuels your car, the desk, the pencil, the paper and everything you use in your everyday life was invented by men.”

O RLY? Ada Lovelace would like a word with you, dude. Without her, Charles Babbage’s “Analytical Engine” would have been no more than a quaint curiosity, with limited (or no) practical use. Female programmers also worked the first electronic computers during World War II. If you use software or algorithms of any sort, you’re using something invented by a woman.

Also, electricity wasn’t invented by men. It wasn’t invented, period. It’s a force of nature that no man can lay claim to. Although a great many men have been killed by it, some in chairs invented by other men. (Ah yes, those superior male brains. They fry so beautifully.)

I don’t know who invented houses, desks, or pencils and paper, and neither do you. But to just assume it must have been a man (because instinct, blah blah) is lazy and pathetic. If you can’t name who invented something, you don’t have the right to assume anything about the inventor’s gender.

BTW, I don’t drive a car. I ride a bike; less polluting. More often, I just walk. Are you going to tell me that men invented walking, too?

“The job you work for”? Again, pathetic sentence structure. Dude, learn English. Use that superior male head of yours for something other than a neck ornament, already.

Also, not everything we use every day was invented by men. So, you were saying…again?

“Mathematics, philosophy, science, medicine, and all of the important building blocks of modern society were created by men.”

Wrong, wrong, wrong. They were all co-created by men and women, throughout history. And the ratio of the former to the latter would have been smaller by far if systemic discrimination had not existed throughout history, and if it did not STILL exist today.

And how do I know it still exists today? Because you said this:

“You are only to provide us men with your physical beauty. Which is the only worthy talent you posses besides bearing children. If you can’t do that you’re worthless.”

Gee, dude, you sure told me. BTW, could you learn to spell possess too, while you’re busy learning English with that mighty manly head of yours?

“Now go make me a sandwich”

What — can’t you take care of that yourself? You’re superior enough to die in war for the sake of philosophy and shit. You invented electricity! I’m too pretty and inferior to do anything but look good and bear you children. You said so yourself. Make your own damn sandwiches.

And don’t forget the period at the end of the sentence, dumbfuck.

Terrorism and destabilization in Venezuela, all you can eat…

Venezuelan justice minister Néstor Reverol plays back audio of some highly incriminating phone calls between members of the Salvadoran terror cell that attempted to disrupt next Sunday’s presidential election. Here’s the story:

“Capriles has managed to find safe places, for our people…the team is already there, they tell me, and they’re working in groups to disorient the vote.”

This can be heard clearly in a telephone call between an ex-colonel from the Salvadoran Armed Forces (FAES), David Koch Arana, who is currently in Venezuela, ad the director of the right-wing Salvadoran ARENA party, Roberto D’Aubuisson, which took place between March 23 and 25 of this year.

The videos of the interference and the links between these Salvadoran mercenaries and the right-wing candidate Capriles Radonski, were presented by Minister Néstor Reverol, who played back both conversations.

On March 23, both Salvadoran agents confirmed that they had seen the reports on Capriles Radoski, whom they secretly identify as “C”, and two days later, they conversed at length in a phone call which implied immediate danger for the stability of Venezuela, which went as follows:

“Did you tell them that they’d be making like we’re working in the campaigns here? …Be careful, remember they already offered their support if they win, and that would be good for us,” says D’Aubuisson.

Koch Arana warns D’Aubuisson that the Venezuelan government already has information of the presence of these groups, so they have to be careful.

“They’ve started a hunt and supposedly they’ll inform the State that there are foreigners interfering in their political affairs,” says the Salvadoran ex-colonel.

The right-wing politician, D’Aubuisson, calms him down, saying that Capriles already has safe houses for them, but warns that it’s necessary to co-ordinate both groups because they are apparently unknown in Venezuela.

“I don’t know how the groups they sent are operating here, but I hope they don’t clash or have a conflict, since they don’t know each other. I’ll talk to them to see how they’re organizing, so they’re identified,” says D’Aubuisson.

Minister Reverol also showed the photo of another mercenary, identified as Julio Alberto Cornejo Quintanilla, who, according to intelligence reports, is already in Venezuela and is tasked with co-ordinating both shock groups.

Reverol assured that the Venezuelan government will not let mercenary groups destabilize the country and the April 14 elections. He confirmed that the security forces of the state are on the trail of the mercenaries and will execute raids and all necessary measures to prevent the plans of the destabilizing groups from coming to fruition.

Translation mine.

Let’s hope D’Aubuisson and Koch Arana are wetting their pants accordingly; the Venezuelan authorities are now on their tails. I hope they get the raids on camera for VTV, too.

And let’s hope they and Majunche are also wetting their pants over this incriminating info-dump about their little buddies in the bogus opposition “student” group, JAVU:

Operation Sovereignty

Plan of Action and Resistance of the United Active Youth of Venezuela (JAVU) for April 14, 2013

Introduction:

We’re just a few days away from a presidential election which from the start has been one of the most unjust and unequal of all time, while the Cuban government tightens its control on our nation by way of its principal puppet, the usurper Nicolás Maduro.

We call on all Venezuelans to overcome fear. We have demonstrated that when we demand with firmness and force, we achieve our objectives.

Giving up will never be an option. They will have to roll right over us if they think they can violate the constitution and abuse and take advantage of us without consequence, because:

1. No Venezuelan could be in agreement with such an embarrassment of a Defense Minister who bows down before the Brothers Castro and makes partisans of our Armed Forces.

2. No Venezuelan could be in agreement with a criminal Electoral Council, accomplice of opportunism and the principal party responsible for robbing Venezuelans of a free and fair electoral process.

3. No Venezuelan could be in agreement with a Supreme Tribunal of Justice which violates the Constitution, criminalizes protests, and legitimates the power of an usurper.

4. And above all, no Venezuelan could support an usurper who abuses the resources of the State, holds national broadcasts to campaign, and is afraid to publicly debate his ideas and proposals before the country.

This April 14, we will confront an unjust battle, but we’ll put up a fight, because beyond being the way to overcome our political differences, that day represents the opportunity to recuperate the constitution peacefully and reclaim the history they have tried to manipulate.

The international community should not be an accomplice to violations of international human rights treaties, but we’ll take care of ourselves, the Venezuelan people will fight for our rights.

We will take over the streets for civil disobedience by ay means necessary, because we know that you get respect when you overcome fear. Let the government make no mistake: We will never bow down before their power, the democratic student movement will never accept electio results that have been biased from the start.

We know that opportunity comes to us by the electoral way, but the electoral powers seek to manipulate the results to keep this illegitimate and usurping government in power. For that reason, JAVU, along with the political, economic and shock forces of the opposition, will not recognize said results. We call for civil resistance in the streets and, in this manner, we will make them respect the votes of the oppressed majority who want a change of government. There is no chance whatsoever that the usurper will win these elections unless the electoral organism helps him steal them.

We also will not recognize any opposition director or political organization that takes part in the deception. Any opposition speaker who calls for us to accept the results of the electoral fraud will be considered a paid stooge of this illegitimate government, and we will turn our methods against him.

Our civil democratic society must not forget that this national crisis is the absolute responsibility of the late Hugo Chávez, who tried in his day to take political power via a coup d’état and, in the same totalitarian spirit, consigned Venezuela to division, backwardness and Castro-communist dictatorship. We emphatically reject the electoral measures that the Democratic Unity Table has put forward and in which, as usual, they evade confrontation with the figure of Chávez.

Chavez is the sole party responsible for this sad reality, and we must not hide this fact. God gave us this new opportunity to put this country on the road to democracy once more!

For that reason, it is our duty as active citizens, from all of civil society, to aid in the development of the lines of action expressed here.

All of us must be part of Operation Sovereignty!

Long live Venezuela! Long live Venezuelan youth!

Lines of action to follow for the activation of Operation Sovereignty, April 14, 2013.

In the event of an electoral pronunciation in favor of the ruling party, JAVU will activate a Plan of Civil Resistance on three fronts:

1. Takeover of strategic public spaces in the most important cities of the land. These takeovers must be conducted efficiently, effectively, and quickly, after the Electoral Commission gives the election results, in such a way that the police forces are taken by surprise and unable to react. Also, they must be accompanied by protests (burning of tires and garbage, construction of barricades, and whatever other method.) This action will permit us to economically strangle the urban centers, as we will be stopping the distribution of foods and supplies, as well as the flow of fuel at service stations.

2. Creation of an opinion matrix of delegitimization of the Electoral Commission, the national government, the Armed Forces, the Judicial and Moral Powers, and the political parties, using the social networks. Our opinion leaders on Twitter and Facebook already are in the thick of things and know the lines to follow. The production of message content is our job and will be made known in a pertinent manner. The intention of this front is to replicate our messages as many times as possible and mobilize civil society to action in the streets of every city.

3. Execution of the Selective Social Boycott plan. On this front, we will be visiting governmental institutions and homes of government spokespeople in the most important cities, where we will take over governments and mayoralties that are in the hands of the ruling party. In this phase we count on the support of spokespeople authorized by the Catholic Church and the media who will legtimate our actions. We are establishing contacts with various officials from the National Democratic Armed Forces for a military uprising afterwards.

As the hours go by we hope that political and economic strangulation, as well as media power, will allow us to generate enough street-level support in civil society. In the first phase we will establish a New Parallel Government and will profess the existence of a Double Sovereignty with the intention of tipping civil society in our favor, via an opinion matrix based in the search for a union of said governments and mayoralties under our democratic leadership and the union of all Venezuelans.

Protest manual for street takeovers:

When the CNE announces the election results, move quickly to the strategic points of protest.
Wear comfortable clothing and bring the following: portable radios, vinegar, smartphones, cameras, drinking water, flashlights, lighters, caps and ski masks that can be worn like hoods, slingshots, gasoline, flammable products, and objects that can be used in self-defence.
Leave all personal documents at home.
Arrive at protest points on foot or by taxi. Don’t bring your car.
Come prepared to fight for Freedom and Democracy.

[List of cities and protest locations snipped for brevity.]

Translation mine.

As you can see, JAVU embodies the ironies of the “opposition youth” to the fullest. They talk about a government not respecting the constitution: WHICH constitution? The old, invalid one of 1961, which was scrapped in favor of the democratically written and ratified Bolivarian constitution of 1999? The Bolivarian constitution, promulgated by the same government these punks refuse to recognize as legitimate, even though it’s been elected, re-elected, and ratified by the people, as well as former US president Jimmy Carter himself?

What a fucking joke.

And then there are their “peaceful” protest methods. Burning tires, burning garbage, blocked roadways, and direct attempts, by preventing the flow of food, supplies and fuel, to starve out the people who voted for something other than imperial fascism. Straight out of Plan Guarimba, naturally. Gene Sharp, why are you not speaking out against this blatant misreading of your own widdle protest manual? Oh — that’s right, you’re against socialism. I forgot. Silly me!

Most intriguing of all is the allusion to their contacts within the media, the church, and the armed forces (notice how they don’t use the correct formal term of reference, which would be the Bolivarian National Armed Forces, or FANB for short.) In other words, the opposition media, the Roman Catholic hierarchy, and a certain sector of the Venezuelan armed forces is either covertly or overtly putschist, and not prepared to recognize the election results even when Jimmy Carter certifies them as free and fair. This is beyond disgusting; it is downright disturbing. It means that the same factions who tried to overthrow Chavecito in 2002-3 are still at it. They just don’t know when to call it a day and give in to democratic will. It would utterly demoralize them and rob their already meaningless lives of all purpose if they did. They would rather dedicate themselves to destruction than to construction. (Notice how they offer no plans whatsoever to build up the nation after they’re done wrecking it. That’s because they’re criminally incapable of making any.)

And, in the crowning irony, they call themselves “democratic”. This even though they can’t bear to recognize the repeatedly reiterated democratic will of the people: the constitution, the president, the electoral council, and all the other democratic institutions of the land. All of it might as well be trash for them to burn. Even the will of legitimate opposition party members means nothing to them. And a great many of those latter now plan to vote for Maduro, precisely because of punks like JAVU. In other words, this grand plan has already backfired on its would-be perpetrators.

These bullyboys would be more entertaining if they were less violent. They really are incredibly stupid, since their widdle plan is now known right down to the last detail, not only to the Venezuelan authorities, but to any English speaker who chances to read this silly little blog.

And if you, dear reader, still believe that they represent any legitimate democratic majority in Venezuela, just watch this space on Sunday the 14th and thereafter. That is, if you can bear to have your nose rubbed in it.

The Venezuelan opposition and the Caracazo

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Venezuelan protesters attacking the office of the ruling Acción Democrática party in San Agustín during the Caracazo, 1989. Photo: Venezuelanalysis.

Right now, Venezuela is remembering one of the worst episodes in its history: the Caracazo riots of 1989. Over a five-day period, more than a thousand Venezuelans, most of them from poor neighborhoods and unarmed, were killed when the military and the Caracas police were ordered to fire on them to quell their protests against the IMF’s drastic (and disastrous) neoliberal economic policies. The fact that the late ex-president Carlos Andrés Pérez (“CAP”, whose face appears in the photo above, alongside a party logo) was guilty has never been a point in doubt; he called out the army. But what about the Caracas metropolitan police? Well, for that we need look no further than who was sitting in the mayor’s office at the time. And, as it turns out, HE is still living…and an active figure in the opposition:

His name is Antonio Ledezma. He is also known as “Grandpa Monster”, after his superficial resemblance to Grandpa Munster from the old TV show. A Munster he ain’t, but a monster he most certainly is. He claims innocence, but he’s unconvincing to say the least. And a popular government minister is calling for him to be investigated at long last:

The Popular Power minister of Penitentiary Services, Iris Varela, assured that one of the principal actors of the Caracazo massacre was the metropolitan mayor of Caracas, Antonio Ledezma, who, as governor of the Federal District, was in charge of the Metropolitan Police, which in turn was responsible for guarding and overseeing the Catia Prison.

“The Metropolitan Police told the inmates that they would be freed, so that they could later murder them in vile ways, and of course, those orders were received in advance, since they could not operate without the consent of their chief — Ledezma,” Varela said.

The minister recalled declarations the metropolitan mayor made to a Spanish newspaper, in which he confessed that president Carlos Andrés Pérez and himself “had to act, and that the expected result were many dead.”

“How is it possible that this personage goes on walking very calmly through the streets when there were so many dead in the barrios higher up?” Varela asked.

The minister made these remarks during her radio program, “No te prives”, on Alba Ciudad 96.3 FM, where she was accompanied by the Director of Communicatios and Institutional Relations from her office, Francisco “Frasso” Solórzano, and the journalist, Freddy Bravo.

Translation mine.

Frasso’s photos figure prominently in the coverage of those terrible days in late February and early March of 1989. He witnessed a 14-year-old being abused in the street by the police, and when he demanded to know why, because the demonstrators were only singing the national anthem, he was menaced by the armed officers. The singing of “Gloria al bravo pueblo” was a part of many of the spontaneous uprisings of the barrio dwellers; some sang the anthem while looting the shops of speculating storekeepers, making clear that there was a patriotic component to their seeming lawlessness. They were trying to feed their families; they were also saying outright that there was still a need for the poor to revolt and “throw off the yoke”, in the words of the song. The “freedom” of trade and commerce meant nothing to them, except for 200-odd more years of exploitation and poverty, which came to a head on the morning of February 27. That was when the “reforms” CAP had promised the IMF took effect, and the poor workers from the barrios suddenly found themselves unable to afford bus fare to their own jobs (which, of course, were NOT paying them enough to cover the sudden increase in the cost of living.)

This week also marks the swearing-in of the Truth Commission, whose duty it will be to catalogue and document the abuses of the “democratic” Fourth Republic (1958-98). It will be interesting to see what other blatant lies they will catch Grandpa Monster in.

Meanwhile, the next generation of would-be Fourth Republicans is busy “protesting” in the streets. It’s easier to say what they are against (Chávez, what else?) than what they stand for. And their leaders are no more credible than Grandpa Monster. At least one of them, Julio César Rivas, alias “Pajulio” (a play on the Venezuelanism pajúo, meaning an airhead, or someone whose brain is made of straw) has been caught literally with his pants down:

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Nice ass, Pajulio.

Of course, Pajulio & Co. are too young to remember the Caracazo, and too blinded by hereditary ideological hate and greed to care what it all means. These are upper-class kids we’re talking about here; they have no interest in the public good. All they care about is making sure the money that trickles down from the lucrative private sector pools in their own pockets, as it did for their parents.

And while they wait for their unearned profits to roll in, they’re getting a lot of financing and other “aid” from Washington, from the shadowy corporation STRATFOR (a CIA front if ever there was one), and from “exile” organizations with ties to the CIA and organized crime. Wikileaks has exposed all this to the light of day. Venezuelans are all too aware of the interference, but they also have good cause to laugh. The clowns of STRATFOR and the CIA really do believe that their little puppets stand a fighting chance. Meanwhile, even with the target of their ire momentarily out of commission, they can’t seem to scratch up an ounce of credibility.

Gee, I wonder why.

Teh Heterostoopid: Too dumb to read, but not to breed

Clip ‘n’ Save: Handy Hurricane Hints

For my friends south of the border, a helpful checklist:

Remember this when you go to vote, because if you or anyone you know plans on voting for Mittens, this is what you’ll get. A shitstorm.

PS: More helpful hints to and from the jet set here.