Maduro's win: Pyrrhic victory
By The Tribune-Review
Published: Monday, April 15, 2013, 9:00 p.m.
Nicolas Maduro won the presidency of Venezuela in Sunday's balloting. But he might have lost the country in the process.
Mr. Maduro, 50, a former union boss and bus driver who became the hand-picked successor of looney lefty Hugo Chavez, was supposed to cruise to victory. In fact, a few weeks back he had a double-digit lead in polls. But Maduro eked out a surprisingly narrow win over challenger Henrique Capriles, by 50.7 percent to 49.1 percent or about 235,000 votes.
Mr. Capriles, 40, the governor of Miranda, is vowing to seek a recount. Whether that happens is anybody's guess. And if the election results stand, few believe Maduro, a “leader” who relies more on the “legacy” of Mr. Chavez than on any real political skills of his own, will have much success.
Venezuela, a Socialist-Marxist state, is plagued by the typical cancers of such a regime — runaway inflation, bare grocery store shelves, debilitating currency controls, nationalized industries that make “growth” an anomaly, horrid public infrastructure, no real press freedoms and an outlandish violent crime rate. Kidnappings are so pervasive, Venezuela is considered the kidnapping capital of Latin America.
Maduro's weak showing surely will embolden outside meddlers — think Cuba, think Iran — to intervene in an attempt to prop up a now-enhanced puppet state that each has long used to its advantage. And Venezuela will continue to be a failing state inching ever closer to collapse and all the nasty things that come with it.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- Pittsburgh Laurels & Lances
- Liquor privatization: Now’s the time
- Alle-Kiski Laurels & Lances
- Greensburg Laurels & Lances
- Extend jobless benefits? It’s counterproductive
- Another IPCC warning: More sci-fi
- The Nevada standoff
- Pittsburgh Tuesday takes
- The case of Beaver County Sheriff George David: He should be jailed pending trial