Southern Exposure

Desde as Entranhas dos Labirintos Latinos.

Tuesday, November 04, 2003

Land Reform II

The article by Le Monde Diplomatique fails to mention some important facts: The Government is the largest landowner in Venezuela, owning 56-57% of all land, yet there are no plans for its distribution. Venezuela is an urban country with over 80% of the population now living in cities and even if the Supreme Court annulled some articles of the land law, the Court is controlled by Chavez, the problem is that the two articles in question had the small problem that they violated the Constitution. If we ever get rid of Chavez, we will then learn the truth of how the Chavez family has been accumulating land in their own state of Barinas. Unfortuantely, the small plot of land called the "conuco" is no longer self-supporting in Venezuela. The Land bill has become much like everything else in the Chavez era an issue of confrontation, where there was none before. The agrarian refirm of the 60тАЩs was a complete failure, with most of those that were given the land selling out to the same British or whatever companies now exploiting them. I still remember John Kennedy distributing land as part of theAlliance for Progress and the agrarian reform with Romulo Betancourt when I was a ten year-old (DonтАЩt date me!!), three years ago I went by that site where a huge mango farm stands, the people are all gone, probably to the cities in search of a better life. Why? I am not sure......wish I did.


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