Trump Administration is just throwing money at Juan Guaido

It appears that the Trump Administration has changed tactics when it comes to regime change in Venezuela.

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The Trump administration is more than tripling U.S. support for pro-democracy work in Venezuela and for the first time directly funding opposition leader Juan Guaidó as he attempts to set up a government to rival the socialist administration of Nicolás Maduro.

The $52 million in new aid was to be announced Tuesday by Mark Green, the administrator of the U.S. Agency for International Development, following a meeting in New York with Guaido’s envoy Carlos Vecchio, who the Trump administration recognizes as Venezuela’s ambassador in Washington.

Since "pro-democracy work in Venezuela" doesn't include the democratically elected government, I wonder what their definition of "democracy" is?
As for the $52 million, that is only a drop in the bucket.
Just the other day Guaido received another $98 million.

The US government has approved a $98 million grant of financial support to the regime of self-proclaimed interim president of Venezuela Juan Guaido, Guaido's self-proclaimed embassy in the United States said in a statement on Tuesday.

Those two gifts put together is nothing compared to what the U.S. taxpayers have given Guaido so far.

"The US global contribution to the Venezuelan cause amounts to $568 million. The newest resources are in support of human rights, civil society and independent media", the statement said.

More than half a billion dollars for this unelected "president", while the Trump Administration kicks people off of food stamps and Medicaid at home.
Well, at least it's going to a good cause. It's not like Guaido and his associates is wasting that money, amirite?

REEVES: Yes, they've been unearthed by the PanAm Post. It's a website based in Miami that offers news and commentary from the Americas. And it actually supports Guaidó. It's published a story about two named officials from Guaidó's party. This alleges that these two officials misappropriated funds and squandered many thousands of dollars on hotels, nightclubs, clothes and other luxuries. The story says that these two did this in Colombia, where they were in charge of managing some of the funds sent to support the hundreds of Venezuelan security forces who've abandoned Maduro and crossed over from Venezuela into the border city of Cucuta. The deserters started - I'm sure you remember because you were there, I think...

SHAPIRO: Yeah, I met with some of those deserters, yeah.

REEVES: Right. And they they started arriving in February. They've been living in hotels. There've been difficulties over who pays their bills. And one of the PanAm Post allegations is that one of these two officials was claiming back money from Guaidó's administration for hotels that were actually being paid for by the Colombian government or by the U.N. Refugee Agency.

Well, no one's perfect. At least Guaido is clean.

“The man on the photo is a Colombian citizen, also known as Menor. His accomplices from Los Rastrojos armed drug cartel tried to find him to kill but failed and murdered his parents and relatives, a total of four people. Investigators think that they tried to kill him to make him keep silent about Guaido’s links to Los Rastrojos,” the prosecutor general said at a press conference, broadcast on his Twitter page.

He also showed several photos of Guaido with one of the leaders of Los Rastrojos, who is thought to be responsible for kidnappings in the Venezuelan state of Tachira.

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Brazil

A t the beginning of December last year, a few weeks before the investiture of the newly elected president of the republic, Jair Messias Bolsonaro, an investigation on an alleged corruption scheme in the Legislative Assembly of Rio de Janeiro discovered atypical banking moves by military police officer Fabrício Queiroz, an obscure former assessor to the then-state deputy of Rio de Janeiro and son of the president, Flavio Bolsonaro. Within a year, 1.2 million reais had been carried over into the former assessor's accounts, according to the Financial Activities Control Council (Coaf), dragging President Jair Bolsonaro's son’s legislative cabinet to the center of an investigation by the state Public Ministry. Prosecutors pointed to evidence that a criminal organization had been set up in Flavio’s legislative cabinet to divert money from employees’ salaries, an activity popularly known in Brazil as “rachadinha.” When asking the courts to breach the banking and tax secrecy of eighty-six people and nine companies related to Sen. Flávio Bolsonaro, on April 15, Rio de Janeiro's Public Ministry's office revealed signs that the legislator had used the purchase and sale of at least nineteen properties in Rio to launder money.
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On July 15, a decision by Minister Dias Toffoli, president of the Brazilian Federal Supreme Court, suspended all criminal investigations that use, without judicial authorization, detailed data from control bodies such as the Federal Revenue Service, the Central Bank and the Council for Control of Financial Activities (Coaf).
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Eduardo El Hage, a prosecutor from form the famous anti-corruption operation Lava-Jato in Rio, claimed that the Supreme Court president’s order ‘will suspend practically all money-laundering investigations in Brazil.” Also, Gianpaolo Smanio, head of São Paulo’s Public Ministry, said that investigations into drug trafficking will also be suspended. The Bolsonaros, on the other hand, this time decided to change their strident speech for a silent celebration.

Haiti

To highlight what they call Moïse’s tin ear, Haitians have also come up with a derisive nickname for his acting prime minister, Fritz William Michel.

“Neg cabrit,” says Jeanty. “The goat guy.”

That’s because Michel got a $6 million contract to sell goats to the Haitian government – even though he doesn’t own any goats. (He too denies wrongdoing.)

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dystopian's picture

The U.S. has 300 million and change people. Average is over 2.something per household.

Let's say there are 100 million less than well-off households in the U.S. We could give each one of them $500,000 for $50 million of taxpayer money. Then how would the economy be? what would happen to wages? The job market? How much of it would be funneled throughout America's businesses, being taxed every step of the way?

There would be tremendous benefit to the country to do this. There would be no recession. So we don't. The guvmint wouild rather give $50 million to empower a stranger than help and empower its own people, economy, and its country. Democrats and Repubs alike are on the same page on this. They spent $200 mil one night on cruise missiles for a staged Syrian 'gas attack'. It was presidential.

But nothing for the little people. Hard to see that protest on your knees.

And actually our gubmint has given 10 TIMES the 50 mil to Gauido and his cronies that got 20% of the vote. Maduro should have had him arrested before this happened, now they are good to go with the dough.

And good Venezuelans are dying from lack of medical care. Good job America! So pro life.

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We cannot solve our problems with the same thinking we used when we created them.
Look deep into nature, and then you will understand everything better.
both - Albert Einstein

Shahryar's picture

@dystopian

if there are 100,000,000 less than well-off families and we gave each $500,000 that would total $50 trillion.

$50 million would only give $500,000 to 100 families.

Nevertheless, your point is still valid. Doing something useful with the money, helping people, would strengthen all of us.

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dystopian's picture

@Shahryar Sorry about that chief, and thank you very much for the correction. I need to lay off these quick drive-bys during work. The funny part is I work for too many hours on Wednesdays with decimals, little tiny parts of numbers. And so apparently seeing big ol' whole numbers caused a catostrophic system failure.

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We cannot solve our problems with the same thinking we used when we created them.
Look deep into nature, and then you will understand everything better.
both - Albert Einstein

Shahryar's picture

@dystopian

there's a lot of good that could be done with that money

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@dystopian

Let's say there are 100 million less than well-off households in the U.S. We could give each one of them $500,000 for $50 million of taxpayer money.

Can't even buy a small bag of potato chips or one cookie with that.

You can however buy a Congress for $50,000,000, around $100K a piece.

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snoopydawg's picture

If any of us misappropriated funds we'd be talking to a lawyer right now. Meanwhile more Americans slide towards poverty every day because we are told that congress can't find money to fund programs after giving their rich friends a huge tax cut. And today Trump is rolling back Obama era legislation that penalizes corporations for offshoring their profits.

The guvmint wouild rather give $50 million to empower a stranger than help and empower its own people, economy, and its country.

How much longer will we let them get away with doing this and the other things? How many more people need to join the ranks of being screwed before we don our yellow vests?

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America is a pathetic nation; a fascist state fueled by the greed, malice, and stupidity of her own people.
- strife delivery

@snoopydawg
First you get slapped by the Right hand, then by the Left.

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Cassiodorus's picture

-- the domination of capital (and its elite owners) is so complete that its owning elites spend their hours scouring the planet, looking for new opportunities to spend their money. There is, in short, a vast surplus of capital relative to whatever actual profit-making opportunities exist out there. Enter the United States government, throwing money right and left so as to make lame stuff (America's many pointless wars are the most obvious example) look like "investment opportunity."

That's what's going on here with Juan Guaido.

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"The degree to which liberals are coming to inhabit an alternate reality, impenetrable by facts or reason, is actually frightening." -- Steve Maher

@Cassiodorus

There is, in short, a vast surplus of capital relative to whatever actual profit-making opportunities exist out there.

I believe it.
But this creates an environment where immense amounts of capital is wasted in losing speculation. (see WeWork)

This is a paradox because capitalism is supposed to be efficient. Yet that isn't what is happening at all.

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Cassiodorus's picture

@gjohnsit that's what they'll tell you. Capitalism is efficient. There is of course that oft-begged question, "efficient at doing what?" and then also there is the obvious truth that capitalism is wasting away the whole planet while the beneficiaries of its "efficiency" are a few ultra-wealthy families amidst a population of billions living in poverty and squalor.

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"The degree to which liberals are coming to inhabit an alternate reality, impenetrable by facts or reason, is actually frightening." -- Steve Maher

@Cassiodorus
I'm toying with a series "A physicist looks at economics" to examine the assumptions of Econ 101 compared to Phys 101 and how they stack up in the real world. Basically, economists construct an ideal (unreal) economy and make universal claims about the real world based on their unreal model. Physicists do the same but the results are much closer to reality. I'd use the Samuelson textbook that I'm looking at right now. It's about six inches from Halliday & Resnick (Phys 101/102 textbook).

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@The Voice In the Wilderness @The Voice In the Wilderness primary metaphor. What capitalism is really good at is transferring money - upwards to the top of a fulcrum, and in leveraging that into returns many times its actual worth. Leverage is debt. It's simple mechanics that's made into a system that few understand because economists interpret it in vastly complex ways. Presto changeo, atomic physics - bafflement for the rubes whose work value gets transferred via wage slavery, credit cards and taxes.

Sorry if I mixed those metaphors to complete the thought. Just couldn't resist.

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Cassiodorus's picture

@The Voice In the Wilderness in his Survey of Global Political Economy (look at pp. 30 et seq.), marginalist economics (otherwise known as mainstream economics) is "axiomatic" -- i.e. it's based upon a bunch of presuppositions, the most famous one being that people are "maximizers of utility," that one has to take on faith if one is to accept the whole enterprise. If you don't accept the presuppositions the whole thing is useless to you.

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"The degree to which liberals are coming to inhabit an alternate reality, impenetrable by facts or reason, is actually frightening." -- Steve Maher

@Cassiodorus
But a series of new studies show that investers are not rational. Also, if consumers were rational, advertising would be ineffective. Advertising as we know it, not advertising sales which actually communicates data, but product differentiation aka branding.

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Shahryar's picture

It jumps right off the screen at you. This is a new definition of "democracy", where it means "U.S. business interests".

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@Shahryar
Workers are not. Workers are animals. Just ask any manager.

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