Gas del Bueno

Quico says: A group of some 35 pro-Chávez thugs, have just stormed Globovisión and tossed multiple tear gas canisters into the building. The group, led by notorious Chavista shocktroop leader Lina Ron, subdued the station’s security personnel using firearms and wounded two people: a guard, and a local cop.

I don’t like to throw words like this around. But on this occassion, it doesn’t really feel like I have a choice:

What we’re seeing here is fascism.

Fascism is a method for administering state violence in order to intimidate, harass and, if need be, jail, exile or kill dissidents into submission. What happened today in Globovision was a crime. The systematic use of such crimes on the part of the state as an intimidatory tactic to suppress dissent, that is fascism.

Funny how, in Venezuela, the word’s lost its edge. It’s been drained of meaning through overuse – together with a fair dose of deliberate propagandistic misuse – to such an extent, I have to wonder if it’s even possible to rescue the original horror it conveyed.

You can’t hear the word tossed around happily 300 times per day on VTV without it dulling your sense for its gravity. Its true meaning may be beyond our collective reach by now. But then, deforming language is part of the Chávez recipe.

Make no mistake about it, it is extremely grave.