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January 14, 2006
A perfect sandalista folly
The World Social Forum starts next week, drawing the monolithic leftist rent—a—mob together from wherever they exist in any country. Up until last year, the antiglobalization event was held in Porto Alegre, Brazil, as an alternative to the Davos Forum in Switzerland. It was their statement about the 'Global South' being "just as important" as a place like Switzerland.
Nobody likes these things. Porto Alegre's residents had their fill of the event, viewing it as an annual plague of locusts, with its garbage, filth, graffiti, disorder and lawlessness from the leftwing attendees, and asked their elected officials to stop holding it there.
It was subsequently moved to garbage—strewn, graffiti—spattered Caracas where the leftwingers' usual activities wouldn't make much of a difference.
There's also the ideological affinity these Sandalistas all have for Hugo Chavez. Chavez also had a lot of money to fling around for the event, ensuring that it would happen, making a Marxist statement for the TV cameras, as if these Sandalistas really merited any news time at all, with their same old tired message amounting to communism.
But it isn't only Caracas where the event will be held this year. To distribute the mess, the event is also being held in Pakistan and Mali.
Surprise, surprise, As Mali volunteered for this thing, it realized it didn't have any money for it. There are no hotels for the backpackers, no flight routes, and no sponsorship. For an anti—globalization conference, it was as anti—global as it was possible to be.
It was all very easy to come up with the politically correct Mali as a location, down there in the dirt with the poor nations, but getting people to a place with no infrastructure turns out to be very expensive indeed, prohibitively expensive for most of them. True to leftwing mentality, the Mali organizers probably assumed someone else would come up with the money. And cheap flights would just appear.
But there is no money in advocating communism (except if you have an oil—rich Uncle Hugo Chavez, and he was spending his money at home) so nobody wanted to pay for this thing.
The whole World Social Forum is often called an exercise in anti—globalization, but its very setup belies its message. It relies on Internet, cheap flight routes, easy travel, Wal—mart supplies and all the other things they say they are against. The Mali leg of this event will turn out to be just a rich hippie's expensive holiday, something paid for by someone else's bankbook and the global value someone else created.
As for Hugo Chavez, he's run into similar problems. The event is being held just as a key viaduct bridge on the only practical highway to the airport has cracked and nearly collapsed. The 1954 bridge has had almost no maintence in the 7 years since Hugo Chavez took power.
Once again, that was someone else's job. The destruction of the bridge has cut the city of six million people off from their airport and their port — where 70% of their food is imported. The only routes left are donkey trails and a 16th century Spanish highway through dangerous shantytowns and hairpin curves through the coastal mountains adjacent to the Andes — 7000 feet up.
But that too is romantic antiglobalization in action and Hugo Chavez should be proud.
A.M. Mora y Leon 01 14 05