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Left to Freeze by Bush, U.S. Poor Receive Heating Oil From Venezuelan Gov't

Have you heard about this yet?

In a resounding gesture of humanitarian internationalism, CITGO, a wholly-owned subsidiary of the Venezuelan state oil company PDVSA, began shipping 12 million gallons of discounted home-heating oil for 45,000 low-income families’ and local social service organizations in Massachusetts the week of Nov. 27.

A similar program began in the Bronx this week and preliminary discussions regarding possible CITGO heating oil subsidies are taking place in Maine and other parts of the U.S. where deadly cold weather is a factor.
chavezninas.bmp.png
"WHO'S YOUR DADDY???"

Venezuelan Presidente Hugo Chavez with his family. (Picture from www.cybercircle.org/ sections/biography1.shtml )
Venezulea delivers subsidized heating oil for thousands of Massachusetts residents

Email: bgp (nospam) iacboston.org (unverified!)

29 Nov 2005

By Evan Sarmiento and Bryan G. Pfeifer
Boston

In a resounding gesture of humanitarian internationalism, CITGO, a wholly-owned subsidiary of the Venezuelan state oil company PDVSA, began shipping 12 million gallons of discounted home-heating oil for 45,000 low-income families’ and local social service organizations in Massachusetts the week of Nov. 27.

A similar program began in the Bronx this week and preliminary discussions regarding possible CITGO heating oil subsidies are taking place in Maine and other parts of the U.S. where blistering cold weather is a factor.

"This gesture of generosity by President Chavez follows the constant attacks that the Bush administration continues to put out against the Chavez administration. The Bolivarian movement is about helping the less advantaged; it is about respect for every human being; it is about providing basic necessities to those that need it," said Jorge Marin of the MLK Jr. Bolivarian Circle-Boston.

Due to Big Oil’s price gouging and restriction on production, home heating oil is expected to increase 30 to 50 percent this winter. Therefore Venezuela's offer will help thousands of working class and oppressed people who would have been unable to adequately heat their shelter and thus die in the freezing cold.

The Massachusetts contract signing took place at a press conference Nov. 22 at Linda and Paul Kelly’s residence in Quincy, Massachusetts. The Kelly’s have three children, one with diabetes and Ms. Kelly has multiple sclerosis. They became eligible for the PDVSA oil subsidies because their state fuel assistance ran out last winter.

“He’s doing the right thing,? said Linda Kelly of Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez who helped broker the heating oil subsidies. Chavez first pledged this life-saving assistance in a meeting with Rev. Jesse Jackson in Caracas in August. “There were people who were going to freeze to death…This is huge,? said Kelly (www.boston.com).

The discounted heating oil will be available to Massachusetts households receiving federal fuel assistance who have used up their $550 annual federal subsidy. Families would pay about $276 for a 200-gallon shipment, a savings of about $184, lasting about three weeks.

“This program represents the fulfillment of the promise made to people in the United States by our President, Hugo Chavez,? said Venezuelan envoy Bernardo Alvarez Herera at the Quincy press conference. “We are committed to working for a hemisphere with less poverty and more development, whether by teaching 1.5 million adults to read in Venezuela or helping Massachusetts residents through a long winter.?

CITGO will deliver the oil and it will be distributed by Citizens Energy, a non-profit organization providing subsidized oil to Massachusetts residents. Then about 350 local dealers will deliver approximately 75 percent of the oil to local families. MassEnergyConsumer Alliance will distribute or sell the remaining quarter to homeless shelters, food banks, and low-income groups. Venezuela has arranged for 285,000 barrels to be shipped to Masssachusetts within the next few weeks at a 40 percent discount.

"Be it education, housing, health care, or heating oil, we are very proud of the actions taken by our Venezuean President, Hugo Chavez Frias. We encourage all that find themselves in need of fuel assistance to contact Citizen Energy and apply for this aid," added Marin.

All the major U.S. oil corporations were asked to participate in similar agreements; they all refused despite record-breaking profits in 2005 from reducing production to drive up prices during and after Hurricane Katrina and Wilma and billions received in federal subsidies. Most of Big Oil’s refineries, pipelines and other infrastructure lost in the hurricanes are going to be recouped through insurance as well.

According to Standard & Poor’s, Exxon Mobil, the world’s largest publicly traded oil corporation, had it’s highest ever third quarter profit, $9.92 billion, up 75 percent from its’ 2004 third quarter. It also set an industry record of $100.72 billion in sales. BP-Amoco, Chevron-Texaco, Conoco-Philips, Marathon and Royal Dutch Shell also had record profits. These bloody profits have mostly gone to corporate executives and stockholders and reinvestment.

In contrast, President Chavez has vowed to set aside 10 percent of all the oil that CITGO refineries produce for Venezuela’s oil-for-the-poor program. Thus far Venezuela is providing subsidized or discounted oil to over 20 nations in South America, the Carribbean and beyond.

Big oil profits, the poor die

It is testament to the miserable state of affairs in the United States, where profits are placed before human beings, that an underdeveloped country like Venezuela, still struggling to industrialize after decades of neo-colonialism, is able to provide discounted oil.

Each year an average of 689 people die from Hypothermia, a preventable medical emergency caused by prolonged exposure to cold temperatures, claims the Center for Disease Control in a report on Hypothermia-Related Deaths (www.cdc.gov).

Hypothermia-related deaths aren't simply an act of nature, unpreventable as rich politican’s would have us believe. A disturbing report on these deaths from the Southern Medical Journal revealed that 61.5 percent of hypothermia-related deaths were among African Americans last winter (www.sma.org/smj). The CDC confirmed the Journal’s findings, claiming that insufficient access to heat kills African Americans and Latin@’s in larger numbers than whites.

Bolivar's dream resurrected in South America

Venezuela’s gesture of genuine internationalism which embraces the working class and oppressed of the U.S., is fundamental to the Constitution of the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela. This document guarantees economics of solidarity and mutual aid, rather than free trade and neo-liberalism, which ransacks underdeveloped nations, advocating the theft of natural resources and putting profits in command, resulting in whole countries mired in poverty.

Mutual assistance is part of Venezuela's foreign policy. Venezuela has championed ALBA (Alternitiva Bolivariana para las Americas), as an alternative to the FTAA.

Chavez’s “Petropopulism,? as the corporate press calls it, threatens the very essence of neo-colonialism in South America as it embraces integration, development and hemispheric unity as opposed to wholesale imperialist plundering.

The U.S. and Big Oil is, of course, worried over these developments, claiming that Chavez uses "oil as a weapon" to undermine U.S. foreign policy.

Venezuela is not using oil as a weapon, but is using it within the context of South American humanitarian integration and “21st century socialism,? attempting to encourage U.S client states out of the influence of imperialism.

-- 30 --
See also:
www.iacenter.org
www.venezuelanalysis.com
 
 


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Comments

Re: Left to Freeze by Bush, U.S. Poor Receive Heating Oil From Venezuelan Gov't

Chavez is just looking at this as a public relations oprotunity. He is not doing this out of the goodness of his hart. He is a political hack.

As far as the poor that can't afford their bills. You made your choices that led to your situation. You choose to be breaders that produced the children that now must be cold because of your decissions. You choose to ignor your school lessons that led to you being stuck in your dead end jobs. You choose to get take drugs that led to your drug addictions.

Take responsibility for your own actions.
 

Re: Left to Freeze by Bush, U.S. Poor Receive Heating Oil From Venezuelan Gov't

I have noticed that 7-11 or CITGO gas stations have prices that are 20 cents per gallon higher than average. Also an issue is that I don't know if the gas sold there is MTBE free. If it wasn't for those issues I would buy gas at CITGO/7-11. Still, it is good to see that Chavez is helping out the poor in the US, for whatever reason. A public relations ploy suits me just fine since he needs to spread the good word about his policies throughout Latin America and challenge the US foreign policy.
 

Re: Left to Freeze by Bush, U.S. Poor Receive Heating Oil From Venezuelan Gov't

Public relations ploy?

Sure, but so was the Civil Rights March on Washington.

Isn't it kind of funny that the only leaders who care about the poor, and actually do something for them, are those that the United States is trying to overthrow.

As for Kelly's impression that the poor are all on drugs and deserve to freeze to death, she is brainwashed by a brutal system that must be overthrown and I suggest she get out of the way.
 

Re: Left to Freeze by Bush, U.S. Poor Receive Heating Oil From Venezuelan Gov't

I'm still wondering why there is always a delay for the comments I post, except one that I just post anonymously on the Bolivian elections went up right away.
 

re: problem with display of comments

"I'm still wondering why there is always a delay for the comments I post, except one that I just post anonymously on the Bolivian elections went up right away."

Sorry Steve, we are not sure. The issue is being looked into. You can report tech problems to:
scimc@indymedia

Please let us know:
Your browser (we suggest firefox!!!)
Operating System
and any other details that may help us track down the problem. thanks.
 

Local Gas Prices

I don't think that Citgo/7-11 are that much more expensive than other gas stations in the area where they are located. The problem is that many 7-11s are located in high traffic or downtown areas, which are more expensive in general. I look for the Citgo/7-11 that isn't in a busy area. There is one on Airport Road in Watsonville not too far from the hospital. It's usually very reasonable.

But even if the Citgo gas is more expensive where you're at, why not buy it? Personally, I'd rather see the money go toward people's needs rather than Bush&Saudis Inc.'s greed. If you get less gas, maybe you'll also use less gas, which is what we all should be doing anyway.
 

Re: Left to Freeze by Bush, U.S. Poor Receive Heating Oil From Venezuelan Gov't

Get ready to laugh!

"You choose to be breaders that produced the children that now must be cold because of your decissions."

Hmmmm.... a couple of questions. What is a BREADER? Are these like bakers? Mmmm, I love fresh bread. But how do you bake children into bread? Are you a cannibal? Is this a cry to eat the poor? Do they taste better cold?

"You choose to ignor your school lessons that led to you being stuck in your dead end jobs."

Seems you might have IGNORED your spelling lessons yourself. I wonder where you work now... By the way, I'll have fries with that.

"He is not doing this out of the goodness of his hart."

Another tribute to your amazing spelling capacity. Five letter words can be difficult, its true... However, I'm afraid you're a bit mistaken. These actions do come from Chavez's amazingly big HEART, something you seem to lack a bit.

Take responsibility for your own spelling. You look like a joke with such blatant typos.
 

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