Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez’s former chief of staff recently revealed that the Green New Deal “wasn’t originally a climate thing at all … we really think of it as a how-do-you-change-the-entire-economy thing.” That possibly explains the weird similarity between it and the constitution ushered in by Venezuelan leftist dictator Hugo Chavez in 1999.
Consider the following parallels:
Green New Deal: “It is the duty of the Federal Government to … [invest] in sustainable farming.”
Venezuelan Constitution: “The State shall promote sustainable agriculture…”
Green New Deal: ‘A Green New Deal will require … providing resources, training, and high-quality education, including higher education, to all people of the United States, with a may be full and equal participants in the Green New Deal mobilization.”
Venezuelan Constitution: “Environmental education is obligatory in the various levels and modes of the education system…”
Green New Deal: “…ensuring a commercial environment where every businessperson is free from unfair competition and domination by domestic or international monopolies.”
Venezuelan Constitution: “[T]he State shall be required to adopt such measures as may be necessary to prevent the harmful and restrictive effects of monopoly, abuse of a position of dominance and a concentration of demand…”
Green New Deal: “…providing all people of the United States with … high-quality health care.”
Venezuelan Constitution: “Health is a fundamental social right and the responsibility of the State, which shall guarantee it as part of the right to life.”
Green New Deal: “…providing all people of the United States with… affordable, safe, and adequate housing”
Venezuelan Constitution: “Every person has the right to adequate, safe and comfortable, hygienic housing, with appropriate essential basic services.”
Green New Deal: “…providing all people of the United States with… clean water, clean air, healthy and affordable food, and access to nature.
Venezuelan Constitution: “Everyone has the right, individually and collectively, to enjoy a safe, healthful and ecologically balanced life and environment.”
Social Costs of Human Activity
Green New Deal: “…ensuring that the Federal Government takes into account the complete environmental and social costs and impacts of emissions…”
Venezuelan Constitution: “Any activities capable of generating damage to ecosystems must be preceded by environmental and socio-cultural impact studies.”
Green New Deal: “…to achieve net-zero greenhouse gas emissions through a fair and just transition for all communities and workers.”
Venezuelan Constitution: “It is a fundamental duty of the State, with the active participation of society, to ensure that the populace develops in a pollution-free environment.”
Green New Deal: “…guaranteeing a job with a family-sustaining wage, adequate family and medical leave, paid vacations, and retirement security to all people of the United States.”
Venezuelan Constitution: “All persons have the right and duty to work. The State guarantees the adoption of the necessary measures so that every person shall be able to obtain productive work providing him or her with a dignified and decorous living and guarantee him or her the full exercise of this right.”
Green New Deal: “…strengthening and enforcing labor, workplace health and safety, antidiscrimination, and wage and hour standards across all employers, industries, and sectors.”
Venezuelan Constitution: “Every employer shall guarantee employees adequate safety, hygienic and environmental conditions on the job.”
Green New Deal: “…strengthening and protecting the right of all workers to organize, unionize, and collectively bargain free of coercion, intimidation, and harassment.”
Venezuelan Constitution: “All employees in both public and the private sector have the right to voluntary collective bargaining and to enter into collective bargaining agreements…”
Green New Deal: “…enacting and enforcing trade rules, procurement standards, and border adjustments with strong labor and environmental protections.”
Venezuelan Constitution: “The State reserves to itself the use of trade policy to protect the economic activities of public and private Venezuelan enterprises.”
Green New Deal: “…obtaining the free, prior, and informed consent of indigenous peoples for all decisions that affect indigenous peoples and their traditional territories, honoring all treaties and agreements with indigenous peoples, and protecting and enforcing the sovereignty and land rights of indigenous peoples…”
Venezuelan Constitution: “It shall be the responsibility of the National Executive, with the participation of the native peoples, to demarcate and guarantee the right to collective ownership of their lands, which shall be inalienable, not subject to the law of limitations or distrait, and nontransferable, in accordance with this Constitution and the law. “
While these many similarities may be just happenstance, the important thing to remember is that Venezuela under its new constitution has become a disaster zone. There is political, economic and social chaos. Those who can are escaping what once was a prosperous nation as fast as they possible.
But that failure probably shouldn’t be so surprising. The reason the Green New Deal and the Venezuelan Constitution are so similar is that their common source is likely a United Nations document called the “International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights,” which was passed by the UN General Assembly in 1966 at the behest of the Soviet Union. The UN Covenant itself can be traced back to the Stalin-written Soviet Constitution of 1936.
The words and notions of all these documents may sound good to some, but in the end, they are just empty words at best, a siren call for the naïve, beckoning them to a socialist utopia, and at worst, lip service meant to distract from totalitarian brutality.
But despite more than 100 years of trying over vast swaths of the earth, and more than 100 million deaths and other incalculable miseries caused, it’s become clear that socialists can’t even murder their way to utopia. Their words may sound good, but they inevitably lead to disaster.
Steve Milloy publishes JunkScience.com and is the author of Scare Pollution: Why and How to Fix the EPA (Bench Press, 2016).