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Rentier Consciousness

In Venezuela, an oil rentier nation, the revolution has many very unique characteristics.  Here, exploitation acquires more a quality of plunder than the appropriation of others' labour.  That is, the bourgeoisie, the privileged class, arises and sustains itself by thriving on oil income, more than it does by sucking workers' blood.  So the dispute is more about oil income than liberation from the exploitation of work.

Rentier Consciousness

In Venezuela, an oil rentier nation, the revolution has many very unique characteristics.  Here, exploitation acquires more a quality of plunder than the appropriation of others’ labour.  That is, the bourgeoisie, the privileged class, arises and sustains itself by thriving on oil income, more than it does by sucking workers’ blood.  So the dispute is more about oil income than liberation from the exploitation of work.

Nevertheless, the capitalist system leaves its mark of alienation on society.  We are an alienated society, or more to the point, a society deformed by alienation.  Che [Guevara] described such countries like this:

 “A dwarf with an enormous head and a bloated chest is undeveloped. Insofar as his weak legs and his short arms don’t match the rest of his anatomy, he’s the product of an abnormality that has distorted his development.”

It is true economically as well as spiritually.

It explains our deformations: crumbling neighbourhoods with Directv antenors; or beggars with mobile phones; workers that seek dividends in bankrupt companies.  We’re able to give our lives to save a president, but not to tolerate half an hour without electricity. And that’s enough to abandon any causeā€¦  abundant dollars and abundant consumption.

Our people, difficult to organise and difficult to tame, know as much about baseball as the traitorous smell of a political opportunist.  They can elect an angel, and likewise support the devil.  They can liberate a continent and yet expel its Liberator.  A society fit for heroism, as in April [2002], and also for the foolish egoism that puts a stop to the revolutionary enterprise.

Thus, perfect conditions for revolution exist in this country.  Its social disorder, it’s irreverence, has impeded dominion from fully establishing itself,from creating the climate of obedience and self submission of the developed countries.  Here the system of domination has always been imperfect.  
These special conditions require special political study, a high level of creativity, but also a high level of learning from universal experience, which is the only way to combat the natural tendency to theoretical and practical improvisation, tentativeness, unconscious experimentation and a waste of physical and mental energy.

A strong bond with the leader and a strong vanguard are indispensible. A vanguard, like disciples, who by their example and activity struggle against the selfish behaviour of oil capitalism and provide the spiritual sense of social integration and the economic reforms that the revolution undertakes.

The exemple of social integration, of Consciousness of Social Duty, is essential.  To impress upon the oil profit-minded  masses the need to integrate into society.  And this is only possible with a socialism that firmly and convincingly shows us a new vision of an integrated society, where the fate of one depends upon the fate of all.

Translated by Owen Richards, http://venezuelatranslatingtherevolution.blogspot.com/

Source: Un Grano de Maiz