Working to provoke discussion and provide up-to-date information and analysis on US-Venezuelan relations, politics, policies, and culture.

The Venezuelan nut begins to crack

Hugo Chavez's autocratic model for governing Venezuela was doomed to failure. Over the long term, it is just not possible for one man, however charismatic, to dominate a society and economy as complex as Venezuela's.

And now, with his latest power play, the plan to nationalize Venezuela's telecommunications and electricity industries announced on Monday, that moment may come sooner rather than later. The nationalization is sure to deal a painful blow to Venezuela's oil-dependent economy. And it will alienate many Venezuelans - not only private investors, but also the poor, who have the most to lose from economic decline.

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