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Wed Jan 4, 2012, 09:52 PM

Venezuela doubles predicted economic growth in 2011

Venezuela GDP Grows 4% in 2011, Predicts Strong 2012

By BUSINESS RECORDER - 1/2/2012

CARACAS: Venezuela's economy grew by an estimated 4 percent in 2011 and will maintain strong growth in 2012, the central bank said Friday, expansion that may help President Hugo Chavez's bid for reelection next year.

But the country's inflation rate remained stubbornly high at 27.6 percent, based on preliminary statistics, the bank said, signaling rising prices will remain a key concern in the OPEC member nation as government spending shows no signs of abating in the run-up to the October vote.

"The recent performance of the economy demonstrates the reactivation of productive sectors, which affirms the expectation that the rhythm of growth will be maintained next year," the bank said in a statement.

Growth was driven by an 11.2 percent expansion in the financial sector, 6.6 percent growth in commerce, and 5.5 percent growth in utilities such as electricity and water.

Government outlays in areas including education and health rose 5.3 percent, the bank said.

The 4 percent growth - double the original estimate of 2 percent - contrasts with a 1.5 percent contraction in 2010 for Venezuela, which was one of only a few countries in the region whose economies shrank that year.

Increased investment in the electricity sector, which suffered rationing in 2010, as well as greater spending on home construction following floods that destroyed houses around the country, also helped spur expansion.

The country this year benefited from higher crude prices that helped its vital oil industry, with the average price of Venezuelan oil reaching a record $101 per barrel in 2011.

That helped the country post a current account surplus of $31.5 billion, but it also reported a capital account deficit of $32.6 billion linked to increased government deposits abroad.

The government's budget estimates 2012 growth at 5 percent with inflation between 22 and 23 percent.

Chavez's high-profile announcements of new housing projects and social spending programs signal the government plans to ramp up outlays in the coming months to shore up complaints among supporters about unemployment and the lack of affordable housing.

Critics say Chavez's campaign of nationalizations and frequent confrontation with businesses, hallmark traits of his "21st century socialism," have scared off private investment and left the country dependent on state spending.

His supporters point to rising standards of living and increased investment in basic services including health and education, which have helped the former soldier win repeated elections over the last 13 years.


(original-NOTE: This is a Rotters article) http://www.brecorder.com/world/global-business-a-economy/40780-venezuela-gdp-grows-4pc-in-2011-sees-strong-2012-.html
(found it at) http://venezuelanalysis.com/news/6716
(Creative Commons License - my emphases.)

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At least this article--though it originated with the Reuters' rotten corporate 'news' service--balances its "his critics say..." assertion with "his supporters point to...," in the final paragraphs. Rotters, the Associated Pukes and the rest of the Corporate Press often promulgate the first ("his critics say" and leave out the second (why he has huge support--what his supporters say), making it a complete mystery (and keeping their 'news' consumers ignorant of) why the Chavez government is so popular.

The article, however, contains the usual Wall Street cant about inflation. Wall Street fanatical anti-inflationary ideology and opposition to government spending are what are keeping our own economy in deep recession, aka, depression.

Further, the use of anonymous sources--"his critics say"--is lousy journalism and is easily and often abused to promote the corporate agenda of the 'news' organization's masters, and to hide the sources in the misty back alleys where CIA "talking points" get passed, like old dollar bills, from hand to hand, accumulating germs and graffiti along the way.

I have to laugh at the Rotters' assertion that the Chavez government's spending is tied to the upcoming election. The Chavez government has consistently spent the oil revenues for social programs and other development throughout its tenure. That is WHY it has been elected and re-elected, by big margins. The implication, of course, is that Chavez is "buying votes." But what if the people of Venezuela WANT THE GOVERNMENT TO SPEND MONEY ON THEM? Is doing the will of the people "buying" them? What crazy illogic!

As for Chavez's intention "to shore up complaints among supporters about unemployment and the lack of affordable housing"--aside from the obvious illogic of the sentence ("shoring up complaints"??)--this is a goddamned lie. Venezuela has one of the highest employment rates in the region and was recently designated as "THE most equal country in Latin America" on income distribution by the UN Economic Commission on Latin America and the Caribbean. Venezuelans also rate their country one of the highest in the world on their own financial welfare and future prospects. This is more back alley 'journalism'--finding (paying off?) some disgruntled layabout who can't keep a job or just making it up out of whole cloth. "...shoring up complaints among supporters" is utter bullshit in every sense. It makes no sense and it is not supported with quotation or any kind of attribution.

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Reply Venezuela doubles predicted economic growth in 2011 (Original post)
Peace Patriot Jan 2012 OP
Judi Lynn Jan 2012 #1
Peace Patriot Jan 2012 #2

Response to Peace Patriot (Original post)

Thu Jan 5, 2012, 04:27 AM

1. Tremendous information. Bet the writer and editors at Rotters were fit to be tied

at the thought of allowing any positive information at all to shine through. Sure, they ALWAYS go immediately to comments from his "critics" and always list as many negative shots as they can in an effort to still portray him as a total failure and a lunatic.

It's a format which has been in play for decades. They won't fix it as they believe it "ain't broke." No matter what the good news is they have to bury it in a pile of crappola. As you can see now, looking back, all leaders Washington doesn't like have gotten exactly the same treatment.

Great blast of information, still, and your comments were accurate. Especially appreciated your mentioning the truth that people who don't really look deeply into these things are left to believe there actually isn't any decent reason the majority of Venezuela keep re-electing him. Very shabby, down and dirty imitation of journalism being fed to the people of the world daily.

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Response to Judi Lynn (Reply #1)

Thu Jan 5, 2012, 10:52 AM

2. "...dirty imitation of journalism being fed to the people of the world daily."

"...being fed to the people of the world daily" got me. You are so right. EVERY day, from EVERY corporate 'news' source, week after week, year after year, relentlessly FOR 'Wall Street' ideology and AGAINST the Chavez government, the Latin American Left and any ideas of social justice and real democracy (honest, transparent elections; campaign money controls; non-monopolistic business and news media; high public participation). They treat this Scumbag Diebold Congress as if it were elected and endlessly slander and lie about a system such as Venezuela's that is OBVIOUSLY better and more representative and has OBVIOUSLY resulted in the "will of the people" being done.

Thus, consumers of Corporate News lose out (are made more ignorant) in two ways: They have no idea what is really going on in Latin America and they have no idea that there is any alternative to what is going on here.

The flaw in "Big Lie" propaganda, though, is that it eventually backfires, due to the inherent curiosity and creativity of the human mind. It may backfire explosively when the Big Liars do great harm or it may backfire in a more orderly way--as it has in Latin America--with the peaceful, persistent rise of democratic values and grass roots organization.

The OP article is quite rare in that it even admits that there ARE Chavez supporters. Could this signal a bit of adjustment by the Corporate Press to the new reality here (the Occupy movement)? Could be just a subtle improvement in the effectiveness of their propaganda. Could be something else--a small indication that they are actually responsive to criticism of their huge and blatant bias. I hardly think that the war against the LatAm Left is going to be over any time soon (Obama's recent blast at Chavez tells us that) so I tend to think that this teensy bit of fairness in an otherwise highly prejudicial article was either a mistake (editors didn't catch it and edit it out) or a minor stab at SEEMING to be more objective.

The Corporate Press has an interesting propaganda problem in that they have traditionally served the need of businesspeople for accurate, "real world" information but are now required to serve transglobal monopolistic corporate interests (non-free "marketplace" which use propaganda to bulk up their power and wealth.

For instance, they don't want people to know that numerous state and private oil companies stepped into the breach left by Exxon Mobil in Venezuela and invested in developing Venezuela's huge oil reserves on Venezuela's terms (which Exxon Mobil would not accept). Chavez created a level playing field--a real marketplace--by staring down Exxon Mobil and rejecting its bully demands for all the profits with little nor nothing for the people of Venezuela. And it worked! Exxon Mobil is out in the cold. OTHER oil companies benefited. THAT is how a free market should work--with the government fostering real competition while protecting the interests of the poor majority.

Corporate 'news' institutions like Rotters simply ignore this plain evidence of the positive interaction of real democracy with a real "marketplace"--positive in that it benefits everyone--and thus fail to provide businesspeople with real world information. But they are doing a great disservice to businesspeople around the world when they create this kind of black hole where information should be. How is it that the Chavez government has survived; how is it that the Venezuelan economy is recovering and thriving; why do Venezuelans rate their own democracy and financial welfare so highly; how come half a dozen foreign oil companies agreed to Venezuela's terms when Exxon Mobil wouldn't? You can't answer these questions on the basis of Rotters and other Corporate 'news' sources.

Corporate 'news' propaganda is part of a campaign to topple the Chavez government but when that propaganda and those behind the campaign fail, Rotters and brethren are left flat-footed as to the value of their 'news' to anybody interested in reality. Do they even notice this? Does it bother them--or those (few?) among them who might want to be good journalists? Do they believe their own crapola? Hard to say. But reality IS starting to make a comeback and the targets of their propaganda (primary target: the people of the U.S.) ARE starting to notice the lack of real information and the disinformation in the Corporate Press, and--thank the Gods for the Internet--are seeking alternative sources of information and creating their own networks of news and information to bypass the crapola that they are being fed, day in, day out. The inherent curiosity and creativity of the human mind is kicking in. And that is what happened, in a somewhat different way, in Latin America. The poor learned to IGNORE the Corporate Press and created or expanded their own communication networks (mostly "word of mouth" networks).

Is their deigning to mention Chavez supporters in this article a sign that they recognize that their credibility is in doubt? Probably not, but it's an interesting notion to consider. It would also be interesting to track this 'news' service article as to who picks it up and how it is handled (Chavez supporters edited out, for instance?).

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