Sunday, January 03, 2016

Comparing Venezuela and Colombia

An article in Telesur notes that 21 local elected officials haven't yet taken office in Colombia because of charges of irregularities. The explicit purpose of the article is to equate that with the situation in Venezuela. If it is not criticized in Colombia, the argument goes, it should not be criticized in Venezuela.

On the surface, this is true, and such situations are well worth noting. But similarity is not the same as being identical. The stakes of the two elections bear no resemblance to each other. The level of polarization is also very different. The incentive to block a specific number of legislators is present in Venezuela and not in Colombia.


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