The media arm of the Venezuelan socialist government has laid its markers in what is sure to be a relentless war of words against the future government of President-Elect Donald Trump, labeling him “a genuine representative of American imperialism,” whose victory will herald in the collapse of the United States.
“Donald Trump is a a genuine representative of American imperialism. Considering that the business of the United States is war, I don’t think Trump is too far from [the standard],” Angerlin Rangel Mujica, a pundit on Venezuelan state television, declared following Trump’s victory on Tuesday.
“Venezuela will be cautious [towards Trump] because he is a businessman. His principal interest is an economic one, and we still have to determine his principal partners in Latin America,” she argued. The stridently anti-free market Venezuelan government and government pundits tend to wield the term “businessman” as a slur. Maduro himself has used a slur against Trump for his business acumen: “bigwig.”
Even before Democratic rival Hillary Clinton conceded defeat, Venezuela’s top government pundits were warning that the nominations of both candidates indicated that the collapse of American society was imminent. The candidates, wrote author Genesis Gómez, “confirms that that country will never again, at least for some decades, continue to exhibit its way of life as a model from the world.”
“The ‘American Way of Life,'” she writes, using the term in English, “has been buried in the 20th century.”
Gómez goes on to condemn both Clinton and Trump for “agreeing that the empire [United States] should continue to determine the destiny of humanity.” She also refers to Theodore Roosevelt as an “invader” and Richard Nixon as “a fraud.”
Another state propagandist, Maiger Díaz, describes the Trump ethos, in an analysis piece, as “appealing to instincts, to the gut, not to the brain or reason.” “He speaks for that part of the American people that has become disheartened and discontent… tired of the old politics and of castes.”
Nicolás Maduro himself — officially a dictator following a decree from the nation’s legislature — endorsed Democratic candidate Bernie Sanders in June, calling him “our revolutionary friend” and asserting that a Clinton win would be the product of “an archaic (electoral) system that is 200 years old” and not a fair victory.
Some Trump critics have compared him to Maduro, however, eliciting loud protests from the Venezuelan autocrat. “They’re saying Maduro is like Donald Trump! Imagine… I don’t even have his hairstyle — and least of all his bank account,” Maduro joked.
Maduro is presiding over a socialist regime that has used state violence to perpetuate itself in power and, through strict price controls and a socialist ration system, triggered a growing famine. A recent survey found 15 percent of Venezuelans eating garbage to survive; nearly three-fourths of respondents nationwide said they could not secure three meals a day for themselves.
The opposition-controlled National Assembly has declared their intention to stage a legislative trial against Maduro for vacating his presidency, the only constitutionally available option. The Hugo Chávez-approved Venezuelan Constitution does not provide an impeachment process.