Venezuela isn’t a cheesy soft-porn novel. The international community has to realize there are no shades of gray in Venezuela anymore. For all its flaws, one side is democratic; the other is just plain autocratic.
The international community is trying to encourage the Venezuelan government and the opposition to sit down to a dialogue. But democratic dialogue requires commitment to principles, and the government has never shown—nor is showing now—any willingness to commit to those values.
The new majority in the National Assembly has failed in offering economic alternatives and in confronting Venezuela’s political crisis. Despite being a lousy opposition, though, they are still important.
Venezuela is, once again, in the throes of a full-blown electricity crisis. Citizens complain of unannounced blackouts are shutting down factories, forcing shopping malls to close early, and otherwise wreaking havoc on an already-sputtering economy.
For the first time in the 17 years since the late Hugo Chávez swept into power, the opposition has firm control of one of the branches of government. This proved too much for the chavista legislators to handle, and their walkout foreshadows the tensions ahead.