Chavez granted powers to remake Venezuelan society
Lawmakers loyal to Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez approved a law on Wednesday giving him the power to enact sweeping measures by decree, a move critics say is a step toward authoritarianism.
Members of the National Assembly unanimously approved all four articles of the law by a show of hands.
Viva President Hugo Chavez, long live socialism!" assembly president Cilia Flores said as she proclaimed the law approved. "Fatherland, socialism or death. We will prevail!"
The legislation gives the president special powers for 18 months to transform 11 broadly defined areas, including banking reforms, tax, insurance, financial regulations, security and defence.Geez, they're not shy about dictating in the South. They could have at least tried to make it look like something mild and administrative. You gotta admire the openness...