As the news fromm Venezuela has become progressively worse – and let’s be clear, it’s still getting worse from this absolutely terrible baseline – there’s been some arguing around the Internet about politicians, like Jeremy Corbyn, who were very supportive of Hugo Chavez’s government there.
My beef here is that someone like Jean-Luc Mélenchon went into this year’s French presidential election offering to quit NATO and replace it with a Bolivarian Alliance between France, Cuba, and Venezuela. Meanwhile, the people most affected are abandoning the cities in favour of subsistence gold panning in a malarial swamp. They don’t need somebody’s geopolitical fantasy; more like emergency humanitarian aid.
I get the impression that JLM wasn’t paying very much attention to the news when he came up with that idea, and evidently not for quite a while. Rather, he was singing his heart out for the lads. The country doesn’t matter, the people even less so, what counts is pissing off the right people. If you weren’t at all interested in actual human Venezuelans, but rather just attracted by the opportunity to romanticise the mythos of Latin American revolution, or to pick a fight, well, this is the kind of output I’d expect.
JLM’s Napoleonic scheme is an extreme example, but I think it’s telling. It’s also one that comes from outside Labour Party politics. It’s not just JC who’s being an idiot about this.