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Venezuela: To Represent one's Constituency is not a Concentration of Power

By Arthur Shaw  Posted by Roy S. Carson (about the submitter)     Permalink
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VHeadline commentarist Arthur Shaw writes: The counter-revolutionary and pro-imperialist forces in Venezuela argue that the existence of civility and common principles with respect to democracy and socialism between the legislative and executive powers of the state constitute a dictatorship. Pro-imperialist and reactionary bourgeois forces imply that democracy exists only when the relation between the executive and legislative authorities is bitter, hostile and irreconcilable.

  • When counter-revolutionaries look at the relation between the National Assembly and President Hugo Chavez, they doesn't find a lot of bitterness and the hostility. So, they irrationally conclude that President Chavez must be a dictator who concentrates too much power.

The reason for the relative absence of acrimony between the executive and legislative powers is that President Chavez knows the Venezuelan Constitution and meticulously respects the law as he exercises power. Chavez doesn't break the law. Rather he exercises power in favor of socialism rather than in favor capitalism. Contrary to the bias of counter-revolutionaries, supporting socialism is not against the rule of law in Venezuela.

The National Assembly is representative of voters in specified districts who elect the members of the legislative body. The President is a representative of the voters who elect him. Often, voters who participate one year--in legislative elections (like in 2005)-- and the next year (like 2006)  will vote in presidential elections. So, to a degree, the President and deputies represent the same constituencies.  Voters therefore decide whether they want a deputy in the National Assembly which supports or opposes the Venezuelan Revolution over which the executive branch of the government presides. If voters elect deputies who support the revolution ... that is, support the passing of state power within a democratic form from the bourgeoisie to working class ... the election of revolutionary deputies is neither a concentration of the legislative power within the executive branch of the government nor a concentration of executive power within the legislative branch of the government. The common ground between the legislative and executive powers comes from the circumstance that both powers are elected by and represent overlapping or mutual constituencies.

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If the voters are revolutionary in politics, ideology, and ethics, then the deputy who represents the voters in National Assembly is likely to be similarly revolutionary; again, not because of a concentration of power, rather because the character of Venezuelan democracy is both representative and participatory. To represent one's constituency is not a concentration of power contrary to the constitution or to the fundamental principles of democracy.

  • As a matter of fact, to represent one's constituency ... as either president or legislative deputy ... is a fundamental principle of democracy ... namely, the electoral principle.

What's more, the counter-revolutionaries forget that they, not Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez, organized a massive abstention in the 2005 legislative elections that resulted in the election of additional deputies who were revolutionary in politics, ideology, and ethics. They falsely portrays these additions to the revolutionary camp as a concentration of power that results from Hugo Chavez' machinations, not from their own phenomenal stupidity in supporting 2005 electoral abstention.

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The Venezuela Constitution gives the power to appoint judges for the Supreme Court of Venezuela to the National Assembly which, again, the foolish counter-revolutionaries boycotted in 2005. Now, these counter-revolutionaries blame President Chavez for the stupidity of the bourgeoisie.  Revolutionaries hope that the reactionary fools will abstain once more from the next legislative election and then these reactionary fools can continue to whine and snivel about a fake concentration of power...

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