By Arthur Shaw, via VHeadline
Democracy seems to be a form of state in which supreme power resides in the body of citizens entitled to vote, where these citizens elect their representatives who are accountable to these citizens and who exercise state power in accordance with the rule of law. If this concept of democracy corresponds to reality, bourgeois democracy is never democratic … because in bourgeois democracy, supreme power always resides in the capitalist class, the class of millionaires, not in the body of citizens entitled to vote.
Only proletarian democracy is really democratic, because in theory or practice or both, supreme power resides in the people.
But bourgeois democracy however is widely believed to respect the electoral principle of democracy … that is, citizens elect their representatives. The bourgeoisie in Venezuela, along with its working class and middle class tail of reactionaries, is loosely organized into something that calls itself the “opposition.” Almost nobody in the opposition believes either the people or even the members of the opposition elect their representatives. Yon Goicoechea, the youth leader from the reactionary Primero Justicia party which belongs to the opposition, says “It’s the same old story of the Fourth Republic parties, which refuse to die. They keep doing the same maneuvers to exclude bases from their own organizations.”
By “bases,” Yon Goicoechea means the reactionary sectors of the people entitled to vote. The Fourth Republic was the collection of bourgeois regimes that immediately preceded the Venezuelan Revolution of 1999 when state power began to pass by degrees from the capitalist class to the working class.
Yon Goicoechea begs the main bourgeois parties in the opposition to carry out real primary elections to nominate their candidates. The opposition demands its candidates give a ton of money to participate in a rigged procedures which the opposition calls “primaries.”� The candidate for a given seat who gives the most money to the opposition is virtually guaranteed the nomination of the opposition. To buy the nomination, the candidates must woo the millionaire stratum of the opposition and US imperialists for financial contributions, unless the candidate is very rich.
The tail, consisting of middle class and working class supporters of the opposition, have no voice in the nomination process.
Goicoechea, who jumped into politics after leading counter-revolutionary college students in anti-government protests, said “There is no chance that someone opposing the [the Chavez] government could win an election if he or she is not a member of a political organization. The Unity Table [the executive committee of the opposition] is just a table to distribute the posts.”� Goicoechea is right. The Unity Table or the executive committee of the opposition sees counter-revolutionary college students as an element of the tail that is firmly attached to the rear of the opposition. As these reactionary college students and former students grow older or grow up, they are divided and absorbed into various bourgeois parties that compose the opposition.
Goicoechea must be aware that he and his ex-student followers can organized their own bourgeois party and challenge the opposition ruling clique for leadership of counter-revolutionary sector of the Venezuelan people. But currently there are, to varying degrees, incorporated in the tail that dangles from the hideous rear of the opposition about 30 riff-raff bourgeois parties. Collectively, the riff-raff in the tail of the opposition gets less than 1% of the reactionary vote. Evidently, Goicoechea and his colleagues don’t want to become the 31st member of the riff-raff that populates bourgeois politics in Venezuela.
In contrast to the rigged and venal procedures of the opposition, the PSUV, the main working class party in Venezuela, will hold internal elections to nominate candidates on May 16. The bourgeois media throughout world which covers Venezuelan electoral processes in minute detail generally ignore this important difference in the internal processes between the working class and bourgeois parties.
“The opposition espouses the capitalistic conception of politics. While we [the PSUV] consider politics social action oriented to solve problems jointly with communities. They [the opposition] see it just as a way to get personal profits. To them, politics is a business. To us, a social apostolate,”� National Assembly deputy Ricardo Sanguino (PSUV) said.
Sanguino, the the middle-aged revolutionary, and Goicoechea, the twenty-something counter-revolutionary, seem at least to agree that bourgeois politics in Venezuela is a pigsty.
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