There are those exquisite moments where the dignitaries of the regime forget that the "ancien regime" democratic ways allowed them to become the fascists (or is that stalino-commie?) that they are today. For example this week we got the words of Adan Chavez, the evil brother of mini-me, keeping up his drive against private education; and Carlos Escarra telling us that the 37% who voted (official numbers, not a verifiable one) against Chavez had no business in discussing the constitutional overhaul.
Private education under siege
Every totalitarian regime has been hell bent in destroying any form of private education. The reason is very simple: nobody should be allowed to develop a dissenting perception of life, the only one being allowed is the one from the state. The obviousness of this forces me to stop from giving any further detail least I would insult the intelligence of readers of this blog.
In Venezuela the all out assault against private education has been delayed once and again because simply the government has been absolutely unable to reorganize the public system. Closing or intervening private educational system, in addition to its political costs, is simply something that the regime cannot financially undertake, at least as long as it has not shown that it can manage the public system. Even more so when doubts about the educational Misiones (Robinson, Ribas and Sucre) are starting to appear more and more as it is plain to see, for example, that illiteracy is far from eliminated in Venezuela. Or as Mision Sucre students wonder aloud whether their degree will get them a job, if they even get their degree.
But with all the changes that we have been threatened with the government is now forced to tighten the squeeze on private education, from your local infant garden to private universities. So, to start squeezing out of existence private schools the government has forbidden them to increase their billing. That is, tuition at private schools for 2007-2008 HAS TO BE THE SAME as during the 2006-2007 period. That official inflation was 15% and real inflation something above 20% does not concern the education minister of Chavez, his brother Adan, who every day looks more and more like the second in command, the bolibanana revolution imitating the Castro brothers show.
In addition minimum wage were increased by 20% last may, which forces an increase of 10 to 20% on wages that are above minimum, anyway. We all know that wages are the bulk of any school budget. Needless to say that private schools are seriously talking civil disobedience and that parents are supporting price increases! In many school parents have gathered to make "donations" and the phenomenon has been so widespread that Adan Chavez had to come out to say that such donations were illegal!
What direct benefit does the government hopes to achieve with that? Either close some schools, or force them to ask subsidies from the state. Subsidies are already given in lower social class neighborhoods private schools since the state has long ago discovered that it is cheaper to subsidize some catholic schools, for example, as it cannot manage the educational system as it should. Subsidies, of course, allow for political pressures on those schools who can at least be barred from any anti Chavez, pro capitalist message, if they were so inclined.
To confirm this wish to control educational message we also got this week an interesting moment. Barreto of soccer fields infamy, has decided to distribute in some public schools little cookies wrapped in political slogans which are by definition of dubious taste and cultural value. Some parents complained and Adan Chavez said that he did not understand the buzz. After all, according to him, children need to be told more and more about socialism of the XXI, which we are to understand is a good thing even if it looks, walks, quacks as a commie duck more and more. Parents of private schools obviously do not want anything related with any political indoctrination of their children.
It is a nice coincidence that the Washington Post reports today that educational textbooks in Russia are changed these days to glorify Putin more. And to bash the Untied States again. Echoes of a totalitarian past are back in the ex Soviet lands. Venezuela-Russia, "même combat".
Note: the children of chavista ministers in general do not attend public school! Most in fact attend some of the priciest private school. For example the Private French School of Caracas hosts many of those nomeklatura kids in either one of its French or Venezuelan section. The French school is one of the most expensive private schools of Venezuela...
But if anyone had the faintest doubt that the chavista administration worried about ALL Venezuelans welfare, this was once again erased by Carlos Escarra. This sleazy and greasy lawyer, not trusted by Chavez, even today, has had to crawl into so many gutters to try to ingratiate himself that now that Chavez finally put into a position of interest, he wallows in intellectual litter even more gladly than when he was trying to climb. The list of all atrocities that Carlos Escarra has said is too long to mention and is worthy of ranking one day with the list of specious politico legal arguments of the Stalinist Massive Trial Judges or the Nazi judges that legalized deportation and racial cleansing.
The latest uttering of Escarra is that the 37% of people who voted against Chavez had no say on constitutional changes, that 63% had voted for socialism and that the change was irreversible so why should the government even bother explaining its reasons to a more than a third of the country. What about "Venezuela es de todos"? Visibly after the fiasco of the Copa America as the rallying moment the government stupidly hoped for, now it is time to erase the memory of those who oppose Chavez. If polls give Chavez below 40% these days, why not come back to that comforting 63% of people who voted for Chavez out of fear and under threat?
That is to be expected in a country that refused to punish someone like Tascon for his apartheid list. Any public official can now speak disparagingly against any political adversary knowing full well that the state power is geared to crush such adversaries.
And thus we can observe the two tenets of brain washing: brainwash the young as soon as possible, and pretend that the ones that cannot be brain washed do not exist.