Friday, March 3, 2006

Hugo and CITGO

The image at right shows Cindy Sheehan in the friendly embrace of Hugo Chavez, the neo-commie “elected” dictator of Venezuela. If you’re not familiar with Hugo, the fact that he treats Cindy Sheehan as an ally speaks volumes — but even worse is Hugo’s buddying up to Fidel Castro, Mohammar Khadafi, and the crazy, vicious, holocaust-denying, Jew-hating President of Iran. Hugo has been running Venezuela as his personal fiefdom, using violent thugs to rig elections or to simply kill his opponents. He is in complete control of his country; in every sense a true dictator.

And Hugo owns CITGO. Lock, stock, and barrel. Because CITGO is 100% owned by Petróleos de Venezuela S.A., which is a corporation entirely owned by the country of Venezuela.

Just in case you’re not familiar with huggable Hugo, here’s a sample of this nutcase’s rantings:

“Enough already with the imperialist aggression!”, Chavez said, according to the January 31 Caracas Daily Journal, listing countries from Panama to Iraq where the US military has intervened. “Down with the US empire!”

“We need militaries that don’t trample over [us] and that don’t sell themselves to the empire”, Chavez said. “If the empire of the United States thinks to come here and invade Venezuela, you can be certain that the 100-year war will begin and we will defeat the North American empire on this land”, Chavez added, to loud applause.

Lovely. And this guy is right on our doorstep — Venezuela’s coastline is the Caribbean!

There have been calls over the past few months for a boycott of CITGO. I’m generally reluctant to promote boycotts, as it’s all too easy for them to hit unintended targets. In the case of CITGO this is also true, for most of the distributors of CITGO products (such as 7/11) are not Venezuelan companies, and a boycott of CITGO will hit them. But…those distributors have a choice about what products they carry; they can switch to another supplier. And since CITGO itself is a 100% Venezuelan state-owned company, a boycott of CITGO will score a direct hit on Hugo, where it will hurt him the most — his pocketbook ('cause I don’t think we have a good way to kick him in the balls). I couldn’t verify this on the web, but I believe it’s true that the United States is the largest customer for Petróleos de Venezuela, so a CITGO boycott would definitely have an impact.

Boycott CITGO goods! Examine those gas pumps carefully; many retailers sell CITGO products under their own name, but the pumps are usually labeled somewhere with the actual supplier’s name…

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