We were just wondering when the Venezeulan oil firm Citgo would discontinue this program. Every year for the past several, Hugo Chavez got some nice PR by donating heating oil to poor Americans in the northeast during the winter. He even got Joe Kennedy to shill for him on TV, announcing what a generous gift the Venezeulan people were offering their US brothers and sisters.
Well somewhere along the way, Chavez stopped feeling so nice. Probably has something to do with the collapse in oil prices and the draining of state coffers. Yeah, that’s definitely it. When you’ve got your own mouths to feed at home, generosity and PR abroad don’t seem as worthwhile. How very… capitalist. What’s more, with his arch-enemy George W. Bush riding off into the sunset, the impetus to make himself look better than the President is diminished.
And let’s be honest, when guys like Joe Kennedy shilled for Chavez they ignored the fact that it wasn’t really his oil to give. He was taking a resource of the Venezuelan people, who are far poorer than the typical poor person in the northeast, to score political points. Not particularly noble or kind under any interpretation.