During yesterday’s infamous session at the National Assembly, Chavismo also approved the highly controversial Organic Culture Law.
Rojo rojito culture has already done serious damage over the years, but this legislation could make it much worse.
The state and the “popular power” will be in charge of all culture-related matters, meaning an end of all private initiatives.
The law also limits the definition of culture: its emphasis will be placed on Venezuelan and Latin American culture, with special attention in what they call “decolonization thinking”.
The other creation of this law is the National Culture Fund, in which all private companies with earnings over 20,000 tributary units (about 2,140,000 Bs.F) will have to contribute 1% of their net earnings. As the existing public system was already one complicated mess (which I described in this related post back in February), Chavismo’s solution is to simply place a higher financial burden on the private sector.
As Juan and his colleagues have pointed out, introducing sharp tax rises inside seemingly harmless legislation (who can be against a law for culture, in principle?) is a typical trick of chavismo. Often, they’re assessed on gross revenue, not earnings, helping push loss-making firms into insolvency and wrecking our economy.
Eight years since its introduction, the legislation was recently fast-tracked by the government with a series of “public consultations”. However, it looks like those meetings were useless as the legislation was drastically changed just before his final vote.
Make no mistake: the Culture Law brings nothing more than red censorship and repression to the Venezuelan arts. This won’t help our culture at all. It will crush it.