Sunday, May 10, 2009

Weekend Newswire: Venezuela

*** Venezuela is a difficult subject to report on. Unless you dig, finding reporters/ journalists with integrity who strive to present a story that is unbiased, it is extremely difficult to get accurate perspectives on the country.

Therefore, when reading articles from major media I tend to focus on the hard data from reliable sources and perspectives which come in the form of direct quotations of "experts," whom represent different points of view. I then disseminate the entire article and form my own opinion.

Hey that's how I do it, you might have your own system. Regardless, in situations such as this where I am publishing a Newswire post on Venezuela where the posts come mainly from:

1. Bloomberg, a U.S financial news giant that loves capatalism and therefore tends to look down on such things as nationalization of private industry.

2. The Latin America Herald, a publication which does a concise job of reporting on all the major headlines that are worthy (in its opinion) for its fan base of wealthy Miami/Ft. Lautherdale dwelling Latinos.

Ok, here we go. Lets start off with a more feel good story about martial arts in Caracas.

Venezuelans aim to kick crime out
Ask most residents of Caracas what the city's biggest problem is, and the vast majority will say "crime". Official figures show a huge increase in violent crime in the Venezuelan capital over the past decade, reaching a total of 130 murders per 100,000 population last year compared to 63 per 100,000 in 1998.

Little wonder then that demand for self-defence classes is at an all-time high. Some martial arts teachers report a five-fold increase in their attendance levels over the past few years.

"My classes have become noticeably larger in the past months," says Karin Yamur, who teaches taekwondo in different parts of the city.

Venezuela Seizes 60 Oilfield Service Company Assets
Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez seized assets from 60 oilfield services companies including Oklahoma-based Williams Cos., using a law the national assembly passed yesterday.

Chavez’s Oil Seizures May Cause ‘Substantial’ Output Decline
Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez’s seizure of assets at 60 oilfield service companies threatens to reduce the OPEC-member country’s output.

“Petroleos de Venezuela doesn’t have the management and strategic capacity to operate these companies properly,” said Jorge Pinon, a fellow at the Center for Hemispheric Policy at the University of Miami, referring to the state-owned oil company. “You’ll see a substantial drop in oil production.”

Chavez Seizes Farms, Says Land Is People’s Property
Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez said land should be considered the property of the people and ordered the government takeover of a group of farms that he said were being underused.

Arsenal Seized from French Expat in Venezuela

An “arsenal of war” including high-powered rifles, grenades, explosives and a flame-thrower, was seized Friday from the home of a French citizen residing in the Venezuelan capital, authorities said.

Venezuelan Broadcaster Facing Sanctions for Quake Coverage
Conatel, the agency that regulates telecommunications and broadcasting in Venezuela, notified Globovisión television of a suit being filed against it for reporting on this week’s moderate earthquake in the Andean nation before any announcement by officials or state-run media.