Venezuela expected to devolve into chaos after Chavez’s death.

Alternative title: Cult-of-personality dictatorship to collapse after death of personalityWhoever could have guessed that this would happen?

In short, Venezuela is headed for a hard fall, and the current shift in leadership will be — as one local observer put it — like switching bus drivers on a bus hurtling downhill without breaks and a broken steering wheel. The problem’s not just the driver, it’s the entire bus too.

Via Instapundit.  I really do wish that international Marxist regimes that have managed to survive this long would just admit that it’s because they’ve largely become monarchist or feudal states.  They should give up and embrace the concept of kingship and aristocracy – or, in the case of the Chinese, finding a good, plausible-sounding reason to bring back a Son Of Heaven.  Then the PRC can all put jade buttons on their Mao caps and actually run the bureaucracies in a more long-term fashion… sorry, where was I?

Ah, right, Chavez.  Damned if I know what Venezuela’s going to do, here.  Except probably have a civil war.  Try not to burn down the oil wells, guys: you’ll want them later.

Moe Lane

PS: …What?  You think that the USA will actually intervene?  Under this President?  Under the circumstances, I don’t think that I’m really justified in giving them anything except the most practical sort of advice…

Turns out that Honduras did not have a coup after all.

[UPDATE]: Welcome, Instapundit readers – but really, this story’s been covered by Fausta better than by myself.

(Background here)

They had a court order.  Fausta updated:

Indeed, Honduras’ La Prensa states that (My translation: If you use this, please credit me and link to this post)

An official statement of the Supreme Court of Justice explained that the Armed Forces acted under lawful grounds when detaining the President of the Republic, and by decommissioning the materials to be used on the illegal poll which aimed to bring forth Executive Power against a judicial order.Other sources verified that the president of the Congress, Roberto Micheletti, will assume the presidency of the republic in a few hours.

Honduran president Manuel Zelaya was detained this morning by the military in compliance with an order of the courts of law.

Meanwhile, the foreign policy experts over at State and the White House* have gone into, bluntly, full Ugly American mode: they’re currently declining to recognize the right of the Hondurans to remove their own head of state on constitutional grounds. Apparently, when it’s a choice between a chief executive on the one hand and said chief executive’s country’s judiciary, legislature, military, and own political party on the other… well, it all apparently depends on what Hugo Chavez thinks.

Let’s just hope that they don’t ask Chavez what he thinks about the Jews.

Moe Lane

PS: Let me expand on that just a little.  I don’t think that this administration is slavishly following Chavez’s lead: I think that they care so little about South American affairs that accommodating their stance to that of a darling of the radical Left seems to them to be a no-brainer.  If the White House is worried about getting the answer to this wrong, it’s not immediately obvious.

*H/T: Gateway Pundit, Hot Air.

Crossposted to RedState.

Chavez claims (convenient) coup; “conspirators” quashed.

Naturally, it’s all our fault.

Venezuela Arrests Soldiers Over Alleged Army Plot, Chavez Says

Feb. 12 (Bloomberg) — Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez said soldiers suspected of conspiring in a plot to destabilize the government were arrested, adding the situation is under control.

Chavez, a self-proclaimed socialist who has accused the political opposition of trying to overthrow his government since he survived a brief coup in 2002, said the country’s intelligence agency uncovered a plan to infiltrate the Miraflores presidential palace. He made the comments yesterday on state television.

“We’ve arrested some soldiers, and they remain detained, who were in contact with a solder on the run in the U.S., protected by the U.S. government, sending messages about a so- called Operation Independence,” Chavez said.

Continue reading Chavez claims (convenient) coup; “conspirators” quashed.