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It is Necessary to Contextualize the Pragmatic and Populist Policies of the Chavista Government: An Interview with Steve Ellner, Part II

Steve Ellner is a well-known analyst of Venezuelan and Latin American politics and is a retired professor at the Universidad de

In the second part of the interview, Ellner argues that populist policies also have to be contextualized in order to be objectively analyzed. At the same time, he calls for a critical examination of the assertion that the government’s social programs and labor policies have generated low levels of productivity.

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Another Beer is Possible: Venezuela's Grassroots Take On the Polar Brewing Monopoly

The polar bear is the symbol for Polar enterprises, one of the largest monopolies in Latin America dominating over half the coun

The beer business in Venezuela was strategically designed so that that only three brewing companies could become part it, which with the passing of time became two: that of the Mendoza family– Polar– and that of the Cisneros–Regional/Zulia. But if the course of the revolutionary process has taught us something it is that nothing has been so well designed– by the dominant classes– that the organized people can’t transform it.

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UPDATED: Venezuela’s Maduro Signs Deals with China, Vietnam, Meets with Russia to Discuss Oil Prices

China’s President Xi Jinping (R) and Venezuela’s President Nicolas Maduro before their meeting at the Great Hall of the Peop

Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro set out for a diplomatic tour of Vietnam and China over the weekend, and plans to meet tomorrow in Beijing with Russian president Vladimir Putin to discuss possible steps for stabilizing oil prices.

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Venezuela Takes Control of Its Border as Bogotá and Caracas Bring Their Cases to UNASUR

President Maduro speaking at the march against paramilitarism in Caracas.

The author argues that chronic shortages in Venezuela are a direct result of cross-border smuggling networks, which are the target of President Maduro's recent anti-contraband offensive in the Colombian-Venezuelan border zone. 

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Attacks on Venezuelan Commune and Farmland Reported, Crops Destroyed

Edison Diaz (center) accuses Barinas state governor Adan Chavez of ordering a raid to evict farmworkers and destroy their crops.

Over the past week, two different Venezuelan groups have stepped forward to denounce illegitimate raids conducted by National Guard officials (GNB) against peasants on disputed farmland in Barinas state, and on the agricultural commune El Maizal, respectively

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Venezuela Appeals Against ConocoPhillips Ruling, Pitches Special OPEC Meeting

Nicolas Maduro speaks during his weekly broadcast "In contact with Maduro" at Miraflores palace in Caracas on Aug. 11,

On Monday, the Venezuelan Attorney General’s Office reportedly requested that the World Bank’s arbitration panel “reconsider its position” with respect to its ruling in favor of ConocoPhillips’ compensation claim. 

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Venezuela’s Maduro to Present Evidence of US Economic Sabotage as Gold Tumbles

President Nicolas Maduro during the ALBA trade bloc meeting on Monday, in Caracas. (Presidential Press)

Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro pledged yesterday evening to share evidence in the coming days of the United States’ “Plan Vulture”, which he claims is currently destabilizing leftist Latin American governments through economic sabotage. The upcoming revelation coincides with worsening economic difficulties befalling the Bolivarian nation as gold and oil prices collapse. 

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The Communal Levels of the War

Graffiti on Venezuelan street likens bachacos or resellers, to thieves. (Mision Verdad)

As the Maduro government cracks down on contraband and speculation, communes and communal councils are taking the lead as a key front in the economic war. 

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Venezuela Ramps Up Anti-Crime Offensive, Targets Hoarding and Contraband

176,000 liters of gasoline confiscated by authorities in Zulia state (@VTVcanal8)

Venezuelan security forces executed major raids on criminal groups engaged in hoarding and contraband on Sunday morning as part of the Bolivarian government’s ongoing, national anti-gang offensive.

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Chavista Theory of Transition Towards the Communal State

Newly elected President Maduro in 2013. 
(Demotix/ Filippo Florini).

The challenge of the Bolivarian revolution in Venezuela today is to advance towards a communal state in the context of the ongoing reproduction of speculative capitalism.

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