Bolivarian Bourgeoisie and Kremlin Kleptocrats

bolivarianbourgeoisie.jpgBoth have considerable oil resources, both are ruled by dictators and thieving cliques, and both are experiencing increasing instability. I’ve spoken often about the parallel political convergence between Russia and Venezuela as well as their mutual weaknesses and abuses in terms of rule of law. Today’s New York Times article about President Hugo Chavez’s waning popularity drives the point home:

The contrast between revolutionary language and the consumption of imported luxury items by a new elite aligned with Mr. Chávez’s government, known as the “Bolivarian bourgeoisie,” has led to questioning of the priorities of his political movement. “Chávez’s revolution has stalled, but it can move forward if he can solve some problems,” said Daniel Hellinger, a political scientist at Webster University in St. Louis who follows Venezuela. “I don’t envy him the challenge of trying to make the country’s government more effective in people’s daily lives.”