|Written by UST (UNIDAD SOCIALISTA DE LOS TRABAJADORES) – Venezuela|
|Sunday, 20 January 2013 02:58|
Chavism and opposition discuss behind the backs of the workers
Ever since Chavez has left the country early last December, Venezuela has been going through significant political crisis. Official parties as well as the different sectors of the opposition represented in the Board of Democratic Unity (Mesa de Unidad Democrática) have been holding debates and discussions about a “suitable” solution to this crisis.
National Assembly with its Chavist majority granted Chavez an open ended leave for his treatment and recovery; the High Court of Justice – also with a Chavist majority – ratified this decision and granted Chavez the possibility of continuing as the holder of the Presidency of the Republic without having attended the ceremony of being sworn in on the 1oth January 2013, all this wielding articles 231, 233 and 235 of National Constitution.
Regardless the formal aspects of the legislation that thrived in the debate between both bourgeois sectors, because when all is said and done, what they are wrangling about is what the most convenient regime will be best to guarantee governance in case of a very probable permanent absence of Chavez who is at present the head of the current Bonapartist regime.
That is why it was but small wonder that, a rally summoned to wield popular support for the decisions was attended by – among others the president of Uruguay, of Nicaragua, Evo Morales of Bolivia, the Foreign Minister of Argentina and the vice President of Cuba and greeting of support were sent from Marco Aurelio Garcia, international consultant of the government of Brazil. Even Insulza, General Secretary of the OAS, having received the OK from American imperialism), who had validated the parliamentary coup in Paraguay, supported the continuity of vice President Maduro.
The Head Quarters of the Armed Forces – who has an important share in the power – circled the wagons and also gave their support to Nicolas Maduro, complying with the will of Chaves of acting as the “guardians of the civic-military union”. That is so, because what is at stake is not only the internal situation of Venezuela – complicated as it is without Chavez. If the crisis gets deeper, it can destabilize the political situation in the entire region.
The economic situation and the possibility of an adjustment
In spite of all the statements made by the officialist sector about the economic 5.5% growth of the GDP and unemployment rate under 7%, the economic situation of the country is anything but simple for workers: inflation rate by the end of 2012, stands at 20.1% and affects badly the already crestfallen wages what will not go as far as covering the food basket, which is already as high as 3568.79 bolivars, informal and precarious employment abounds in the country.
Shortage, hoarding and speculation are other scrooges that affect the standard of living of the working class. Today, goods as necessary as corn flour, toilet paper, butter and sugar among others are conspicuously absent. Important economic sectors such as manufacture, agriculture and mining have closed with anemic growth. But not everybody loses at this scenario: private banks have seen their profits rise by93# this year compared to previous year. This proves that private bankers are faring very well with this PSUV administration.
Just the same, the government is preparing an adjustment against the workers. It was even announced by Minister Jorge Giordani early last December. The relapse of Chavez’s illness and the electoral panorama made it necessary to postpone it but it is only a tactical withdrawal, for it is quite evident that regardless whether Chavez will ever be able to hold the presidential office again, workers and all the underprivileged sectors will have to stand up against the delayed adjustments.
The announced adjustment foresaw the increase of the price of petrol and fees for services. Devaluation of currency, which some analysts estimated at 46% this year, was also foreseen. Just the same, an increase of the foreign debt service is equally foreseeable and for 2013 it reaches $15 000 million.
Workers cannot expect anything good from these squabbles
On the other hand, workers and popular sectors, who were those who had voted for Chavez and had him re-elected, participated in the debate as passive witnesses for they were not consulted about anything. We attended a scenario where Chavism and bourgeois opposition fight “in the name of the Constitution and Democracy” and yet they deny workers the most elementary democratic right: to know what the situation of Chavez’s health is.
Silence and complicity of the trade union Centrals and leaders
While the toiling masses have to put up with all the hardships, most trade unions accompanied the decisions of the PSUV meekly and have been doing nothing to go with the workers and their organization scarcity, hoarding and the atrocious increase of prices. As usual, sectors of pro-employers make very good business concealing essential commodities in the face of mild threats of the government and total inactivity of trade union leaders who are busy keeping workers confused and demobilized.
While we, socialists, respect the expectations and concern of the toiling masses about Hugo Chavez’s health, we cannot but warn that nothing can be expected from the squabbles and negotiations in the summits of PSUV and the MUD. It will have to be the workers themselves who, with their struggles and their own independent organization in the workplaces and in the workers’ and popular suburbs will get the country out of this situation, defending their achievements and making headway towards a proletarian solution which is fighting for a government of workers.