Venezuela’s Maduro stuck in shadow of ‘El Comandante’ Chavez

Hovering over a sun-baked mountain one day in his presidential helicopter, Hugo Chavez had a dream: to build a utopian city that would showcase socialism in Venezuela.

Slowly and chaotically over the years that followed, the late president’s pet project – conceived a decade into his rule and named “Ciudad Caribia” for the country’s indigenous Carib people – began to take shape on the mountain 10 km (6 miles) northwest of the capital, Caracas.

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Power blackouts hit nearly half of Venezuela

CARACAS, Venezuela (AP)Venezuela‘s main power distribution network failed Tuesday, depriving nearly half the country of electricity and knocking out traffic lights and water service in much of Caracas, which normally escapes such outages.

Electrical Energy Minister Jesse Chacon said on state TV that the failure was in the “backbone” that carries electricity from the Bajo Caroni region, where 60 percent of Venezuela’s power is generated.

He said 11 of 23 states lost power and that, in the Andean region near Colombia, the neighboring country was helping supply electricity.

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Maduro vs. corruption: In earnest or power grab?

CARACAS, Venezuela (AP) — There is little question Venezuela is a nation in desperate need of an anti-corruption crusade.

Machine-gun toting police in the chaotic capital are widely perceived to be in cahoots with criminals, black marketeers get rich circumventing widely-flouted currency controls, and many politicians who rose to power under the late President Hugo Chavez flaunt lifestyles that appear far too luxurious for their government salaries.

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Press Freedom Disappearing In Venezuela As Globovision Comes Under Government Control

Nicolas Maduro

Nicolas Maduro (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Venezuelan President Nicolás Maduro increasing pressure on the county’s last private news channel has prompted six senior journalists to leave the company in protest of what they say is a shift in Globovision’s editorial direction.

The reporters and television anchors left in response to the “abrupt, violent and aggressive” departure of creative director Leopoldo Castillo earlier this month after 12 years with the company. The president has been accused of meddling with editorial matters at the media conglomerate.

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