[Venezuelan President Nicolás Maduro] possesses, however, few of his predecessor’s resources, lacking not just oil revenue but Chávez’s surplus of charisma, humour and political skill. Maduro, unable to end the crisis, has increasingly sided with the privileged classes against the masses; his security forces are regularly dispatched into barrios to repress militants under the guise of fighting crime. Having lost its majority in Congress, the government, fearing it can’t win at the polls the way Chávez did, cancelled gubernatorial elections that had been set for December last year (though they now appear to be on again). Maduro has convened an assembly to write a new constitution, supposedly with the objective of institutionalising the power of social movements, though it is unlikely to lessen the country’s polarisation.
It is a pity that The New Age, the planned newspaper which has positioned itself as “broadly supportive of the government”, did not appear today as planned because of the resignation of 5 senior editors (including the editor-in-chief and the deputy editor) yesterday, just a few hours before the first edition had to go to print. South Africa needs a more diverse print media and judging from its website, the new product would have provided a lively but credible new voice to the media landscape.
I was rather startled though when I went to The New Age website and a window popped up with the following advertisement.
That was quick.
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