Wed, 13 February 2013
Last week, we spoke about ‘managed democracy’ in the US. In this show, we bust the myths about the democracy movement in Venezuela. The US media routinely misreports on Venezuela because its success threatens US Empire. Mike Fox, a journalist and documentarian, has covered the rise of participatory democracy in Venezuela and other Latin American countries over the past ten years. Following the election of Hugo Chavez, the people of Venezuela rewrote the Constitution granting rights to education, health care, land for growing food and more. They have worked to build new institutions to meet their needs and are creating a democratic structure of governance through community councils. The results are that they have the lowest index of inequality in all of South America and are ranked fifth in the world in happiness. We then speak with Maria Hadden of the Participatory Budgeting Project in the US. Participatory budgeting gives decision-making power over public funds to the people. In the US, it started in Chicago and is growing coast to coast.