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Report Back and Photogs From Hugo Chavez Speech In Caracas

This is a report with some photographs of the receny speech given by Hugo Chavez at the World Social Forum in Caracas.
Hugo Chavez spoke last night. He spoke at a big soccer stadium out on the edge
of town.

The trip to the stadium was via the metro and, once we got to the end of the
metro line, via small busses.

Once at the stadium, the men were separated from the women in to two
line. Each
were searched for weapons and explosives. Then we were given bottles of water
and smiles and entrance to the stadium.

The atmosphere inside was roaring excitement. These people are all hard-core
soccer lovers and stadium-ecstasy is second nature. There was a
pre-Chavez show
with musicians playing excellent folk and revolutionary music and scores of
young teenage boys and girls dancing slowly about with yards of diaphanous
pastel cloud-gauze wafting gracefully behind.

I went to the stadium with Lenore, a Chavez supporter who is making a study of
propaganda. She was ticking off all the techniques that were being used
at this
rally. Very interesting.

I saw a picture of Jesus the revolutionary he looked quite a bit more
stern than
the famous picture of Che Guavera.

Chavez spoke for about two hours, no notes. He even sang a short song
and he has
a great voice. I kept comparing Chavez and Bush while I was watching. Chavez
inspires hope, Bush evokes fear. Chavez emanates strength, ability and
confidence, Bush is a national embarrassment. Chavez can extemporize a
two hour
speech, Bush can barely read for twenty minutes.

Some people tried to leave early but were blocked by red beret wearing, Uzi
toting soldiers. No one was allowed out until Chavez finished his speech. At
one point the crowd became a bit restive and the soldiers were looking pretty
nervous. I thought I smelled fear in the air, so I moved away from the door
area. It was easy to imagine the crowd (mostly Americans) all pushing toward
the door and the soldiers responding with their Uzis.

Thankfully nothing complicated happened, and we were all able to walk
out under
the cool night sky.
awe insiring 30.Jan.2006 10:40


Oh wow, Chavez seems so inspiring. I think populism is really great because it at least makes people feel like all those things like abject poverty don't exist because we're all "one" people. Matching t-shirts, songs, jumping around, etc. all seem like pretty cool innovations for democratic participation as well. If only Howard Dean could have come up with some things like this, maybe the US would be completely different.

one nation, under god, indivisible 01.Feb.2006 10:25

Spider Jerusalem

"makes people feel like all those things like abject poverty don't exist because we're all 'one' people."

got a flag on your car, Citizen?