Chicago Teachers Union Goes to Venezuela, Praises Maduro for Not Closing Schools

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Four Chicago Teachers Union representatives went to Venezuela, a failed nation, singing praises of its corrupt leader.

Mayor Rahm Emanuel closed some decaying half-empty Chicago schools.

Those closures prompted a CTU visit to Venezuela in praise of its socialist leader Nicolás Maduro whose corrupt and dictatorial regime has sparked rebuke from some 50 nations around the world.

Surprised?

The Chicago Tribune comments Surprised by CTU’s Venezuela Visit? Then You Haven’t Been Paying Attention.

Four representatives of the Chicago Teachers Union, including a member of its executive board, visited Venezuela in July and returned with high praise for the socialist polices of President Nicolás Maduro.

This should not surprise anyone paying attention to the increasingly left-leaning political views of the leadership at the union, which represents some 25,000 teachers across Chicago.

Reading their social media accounts of the trip, you’d think they visited Mayberry.

In Praise of Maduro

CTU executive board member Sarah Chambers

  • “Through major economic hardships, Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro never closed a single public school or a single health clinic. This stands in stark contrast to our experience in Chicago, where Mayor Rahm Emanuel closed 50 public schools and several mental health clinics in a single year.”
  • Chambers also posted on social media her astonishment that, during her trip, she “didn’t see a single homeless person.” She and others praised literacy rates in the country and the commune-style culture.

Venezuela Poverty Facts

Please consider the Top Ten Facts About Venezuela Poverty

  • Poverty in Venezuela is an epidemic. Nearly 90 percent of Venezuelans live in poverty. According to estimates by the United Nations Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean, this is a dramatic increase from 2014 when 48 percent of Venezuelans lived in poverty. Maria Ponce is an investigator with the local universities researching the food shortage, and she stated that “this disparity between the rise in prices and the population’s salaries is so generalized that there is practically not a single Venezuelan who is not poor.”
  • Venezuela is experiencing ‘hyperinflation.’ Venezuela is experiencing one of the worst inflation rates in history. According to Robert Renhack, deputy director of the IMF’s Western Hemisphere Department, Venezuela “is one of the most severe hyperinflation situations that we’ve known about since the beginning of the 20th century.” And the nation shows no sign of stopping. Currently, Venezuela’s inflation rate sits at 27,364 percent, dooming those without savings or foreign aid to poverty.
  • Food crisis leads to “Maduro diet.” Malnutrition is spreading. According to a recent survey, over two-thirds of Venezuelans report losing an average of 25 pounds in the last year and 61.2 percent of Venezuelans report going to bed hungry. Doctor Marianella Herrera states that “people are developing strategies to survive but not to feed themselves.” Iron-rich foods, such as maize and vegetables, have been nearly eliminated from the Venezuelan diet while government food programs fail to end the hunger.
  • Medicine is running out. Due to the poor economy, Venezuela is experiencing a severe medicine shortage and hospitals are struggling to stay open. The Pharmaceutical Federation of Venezuela estimates the country is experiencing an 85 percent shortage of medicine
  • Venezuelans are fleeing the country. In the past two years, nearly one million Venezuelans have fled the struggling nation, one of the biggest migration crises in Latin American history after the mass exodus following Fidel Castro’s 1959 revolution. Many Venezuelans report they no longer feel safe in their home country and have lost hope in government officials.

I picked out what I thought were the top five points.

Parents, Please Pay Attention

Chicago parents, please pay attention to what your teachers are doing.

And in case it did not occur to you, what they are doing is brainwashing your kids.

It's one thing to be against Trump's sanctions on Venezuela (I am too), but it is beyond idiotic to travel to Venezuela singing the praises of Maduro.

Mike "Mish" Shedlock

Comments (50)
No. 1-26
Stuki
Stuki

Singing the praises of ever more government meddling and redistribution, is what those benefiting from the redistribution will always do. Makes zero difference whether one is a Chicago unionista, a New York hedge fund manager, or Donald Trump. Thinly veiled excuses for why it is somehow OK for the government to rob my neighbor to pay me, is all any government apologist will ever be about. Without any exception whatsoever.

imunro
imunro

Venezuela's economic woes are are at least as much a consequence of US sanctions as they are a product of Maduro's socialist policies. Surely you understand that the US has been interfering in the affairs of sovereign Central and Latin American nations for the last 75 years!

Droa
Droa

The last thing I read about Venezuela school teacher is that they were also working as prostitutes. Will this become the new normal for Chicago?

bradw2k
bradw2k

Do those four individuals all have perfect skin, or does the whitewashing of socialism rely on photoshopping too?

thimk
thimk

taxpayer dollars funding a junket to Venezuela to make an ideological statement.

Greggg
Greggg

Look for the union label (for extracurricular activities).

Webej
Webej

So, did you all know that in the depths of the depression, Chicago schools kept going despite the fact that salaries were not being paid? Back then teaching was considered what was known as a "calling". Of course they're not the same individuals, but, still worth noting this for the record.

Webej
Webej

The shortages of medicine are mostly caused by sanctions.

Webej
Webej

Venezuelans are not a "failed nation". They arguably have a failed state, but that is something else. They were the first to kick out the Spanish, and have/had more development and progress than many other spots around Latin America.

During the Chavez years they succeeded in drastically improving literacy rates, access to education, health care, and lowering the percentage of people in poverty. The economy is doing terribly the past 5 years, but not only due to mismanagement and other issues: heavy crude is simply not very profitable. Even in Canada the viability of heavy oil is a problem that periodically reasserts itself.

Were Bolton to get his way with "regime" change, expect conditions in Venezuela to deteriorate for >90% of the population -- think Honduras, Guatamala, Haiti, and other beneficiaries of US-led regime change and export of democracy.

Kenneth-Royer
Kenneth-Royer

Whether or not this is a good idea or not for the teachers union to show up it seems to me to be just another long list of hoaxes to gain sympathy [and more money of course] for the union and their teachers. Just like the HOAXES our government DHS FEMA when they run drills such as a staged mass shooting event. Our news media runs with them as if they are real so that sales people will go to the schools selling, CCTV Networks, metal detectors, bullet proof windows, scanners [great radiate our children] and an assorted security services. These companies get the thrill of increase revenue/profits and we the taxpayer get the bill. They get the THRILL and we the people get the BILL! The scams just never stop!

MickLinux
MickLinux

Each person will have their own five points.

Let's not forget that even five years ago, they were shooting the students. Students shot, schools open.

Umm.... in case you are wondering, I mean in Venezuela.

BillSanDiego
BillSanDiego

Forget facts about Venezuela. That's not the real issue here. The function of the Teachers Union leadership is to advocate for Chicago teachers with regard to wages and working conditions. Period. That is the sole purpose for which they were elected to their positions.

They have no business engaging in political advocacy for either side of the political spectrum. They should be spending their time lobbying for teachers causes. Period. Lobbying for leftist political causes is outside their mandate.

Casual_Observer
Casual_Observer

In reality the above post is not that important in the grand scheme of global economics. Today Trump is eyeing another tax cut. The deficit will spike higher again.

RonJ
RonJ

Sarah Chambers: “Through major economic hardships, Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro never closed a single public school or a single health clinic."

Fact:" The Pharmaceutical Federation of Venezuela estimates the country is experiencing an 85 percent shortage of medicine."

It doesn't matter that all the health clinics are open, if they can't service the patients.

The CTU is willfully blind to the suffering in Venezuela.

RonJ
RonJ

"And in case it did not occur to you, what they are doing is brainwashing your kids."

After a previous election, i heard a radio ad in which the California Teachers Association said they were going to promote social justice. Yes they are brainwashing the children.

lol
lol

Those folks aren't stupid,they see what's comin,Trump should meet with el presidente and get some real world survival tips for staying in power when your country collapses because before his term is over DT is gonna be in the exact same position,will he seize power like Maduro or will he be forced out by a DNC led coup?

SMF
SMF

Wow...I come from Ecuador, south of Venezuela. Way back when I was growing up there, Venezuela was almost a 1st world country, the envy of Latin America.

When even the poor people in Ecuador are saddened over what happened there, you know it's pretty bad. And most will blame the problem on socialism.

Aaaal
Aaaal

I'm guessing this was orchestrated by John Bolton himself. Effective in executing innumerable objectives.

Northern Harvest
Northern Harvest

The sanctions on Iran have been more extreme and have been in place for far longer than those placed on Venezuela. Iran has fared far better. They are having serious hardship. The difference between them; one is hard line theocracy and the other hard line socialism. The only conclusion from this comparison is that socialism destroys countries.

Seb
Seb

It’s a failed nation after the US has tried to overthrow it multiple times and Sanctioned it to the point it can’t even bring in medicine. ANY GOVERNMENT WOULD FAIL AFTER ITS BEEN CUT OFF FOR 10 years plus!! That’s like me burning your house down and blaming you for being homeless. Let his government compete with fair access to markets and if it fails after than it was because the veneZuelan people didn’t want him-not the US. This interventionist blame communism bullshit has to stop. Let communism fail on its own. We are not the worlds police even though this is not a humanitarian intervention- ITS ABOUT OIL AGAIN!!!!!

MrGrumpy
MrGrumpy

Speaking as a former member of the Chicago Teachers Union I believe these people are 'useful idiots' in the hands of the Maduro regime. Visitors to a ruined country can be controlled and shown a Potemkin village just to gain a positive image abroad. Witness the visit of Michael Moore to Cuba. He saw nothing negative while there. The illusion can be maintained for a sort while. With time the reality intrudes.

ReadyKilowatt
ReadyKilowatt

Ironically, I read this story while dining at the Golden Corral restaurant. No food shortage there, and only had to work about half an hour to earn enough to stuff my gullet full of steak, vegetables and 2 deserts!

Alberton
Alberton

That's a good move! Schools shouldn't be closed. I understand it but sometimes I feel so lazy when I need to do assignments for my school. I often read essaypro reviews and want to order a writing task because they are so difficult and require too much time. I think once I will do it.

stillCJ
stillCJ

Editor

So, do those morons know they are commies, or are they just (as Lenin said) "useful idiots"? I really feel sorry for Chicago school kids. My granddad went from 1-12 there a long time ago and his education was polar opposite; he got a real education.

stillCJ
stillCJ

Editor

Q: Do they still have labor unions in Venezuela?