Hugo Chavez vann presidentvalet i Venezuela klart. 54% av rösterna fick han medan den ledande, borgerliga, oppositionskandidaten Henrique Capriles fick 45%. Valdeltaganden var högt, kring 80%, vilket måste sägas vara mycket bra för ett så fattigt land som Venezuela. En klar seger för Chavez alltså och en tydlig seger för demokratin.
I valmkampanjen har oppositionen sagt att man tänkt vidhålla de social satsningar Chavez gjort men man har kritiserat det som är regimens stora problem, statsbyråkratin, en ineffektiv och ibland korrupt cancersvulst som vänsterorganisationen Marea Socialista uttrycker det:
The Chavez campaign rests on three fundamental measures taken in the last year and a half. They are the launching of two big Social Missions and the reform of the organic labour law, a promise pending since the coming to power of the Bolivarian Government 14 years ago.
The Gran Misión Vivienda [Big Housing Mission] launched a year and a half ago has already built and delivered more than two hundred thousand decent housing units across the country as part of a projected plan of two million for the next government. And the Misión Amor Mayor [Greatest Love Mission] has given retirement benefits to nearly a million people who had no social security.
Thirdly, last April the reform of the organic labour law was passed, which incorporated some advanced measures in the employment field such as for example immunity from dismissal by organic law, six months post natal leave for the mother and two for the father, the end of employment outsourcing, reduction of the probationary period for new workers from three months to one month, and other measures seen as progressive for the majority of workers.
In this context the campaign of the opposition is based on a discourse that says it will maintain the social conquests of Chavism and is aimed primarily at the Achilles heel of the government: the abuse, inefficiency and neglect affecting the population.
The state bureaucracy, cancer of the revolutionary process
The fourteen years of Chavista government have seen important advances in the standard of living of the people made possible by exceptional prices per barrel of oil. On the other hand these advances are insufficient.
In the absence of a break with the logic of capital, the main beneficiaries of oil revenues have been the local bourgeoisie and sectors of multinational corporations. This bourgeoisie, coupled with a new business sector of state contractors , known in the country as the “boliburguesía” (ie.Bolivarian bourgeoisie) , has worked closely with the government bureaucracy. Ministers, officials, leaders of the PSUV, function as the state aspect of the logic of capital with a mixed economy model, enjoying huge and obscene privileges. Meanwhile outstanding major debts to workers remain, for example discussion of the collective agreement for public employees and for health workers has been delayed for seven years.
To these privileges is added the mistreatment of the Bolivarian people. Persecution of Union leaders and trade unions. Impunity for hired killers. Discrimination against beneficiaries of the Missions. Promises unfulfilled in relation to business improvements. And among many other things, an inefficiency which hides corrupt procedures in the management of public enterprises and that puts them in crisis or at the edge of paralysis. This is the basis of weariness, disillusionment and harsh criticism in a sector of the population which is one of the engines of the revolutionary process and the social base of Chavism. Affection for Chavez, who embodies the Bolivarian people, is now marred by the management of the bureaucracy protected by the President himself.
Trots kritiken uppmanade Marea Socialista till en rösta på Hugo Chavez:
Marea Socialista, as a critical current of the PSUV, has for some months been waging a significant electoral campaign with a different content from that of the official campaign of the government, the party and the Gran Polo Patriótico. Resting centrally on the critique of the state bureaucracy, mobilizing workers, youth and members of the communities, it has raised in the streets the slogan: 7-O Chavez Presidente, 8 – O A limpiar de Burócratas la Revolución [“October 7, Chavez President – October 8, For the cleansing of the bureaucrats from the revolution”].
Chavez är en populär president i breda folklager då han under sin tid som president använt oljepengar för att förbättra för fattiga, minska fattigdomen och minska klyftorna i landet. Klyftor mellan fattig och rik som trots förbättringar fortfarande är enorma.