" Cod: AMAZ29

AUTHORITARIAN GOVERNMENT V. THE RULE OF LAW. Lectures and Essays (1999-2014) on the Venezuelan Authoritarian Regime established in contempt of the Constitution

This book is a collection of all the Essays of Professor Allan R. Brewer-Carías on the Venezuelan Authoritarian Government and the Demolition of the Rule of Law, written during the past fourteen years (1999-2014), in which he has analyzed not only the most important aspects of Venezuelan constitutional law provisions according to the 1999 Constitution, but also how the authoritarian government installed in the country since its enactment, has ruled it against the rule of the Constitution, subverting the democratic regime from within by using its own institutions and tools. The process began with the convening of a Constituent Assembly in 1999 against the provisions of the then in force 1961 Constitution, seeking to supposedly impose people's sovereignty over the principle of constitutional supremacy. What resulted was the intervention and takeover of all branches of government, being the Constituent Assembly the main tool used for assaulting the State's powers, imposing in the country an authoritarian, centralistic and militaristic government, eliminating, any sort of check and balance framework, subjecting the Judiciary to strict political control, and consequently, dismantling the rule of law. In addition, the Constituent Assembly assured that the main provisions of the new Constitution, particularly on the decentralized form of government, the principle of separation of powers, the independence of the judiciary and the representative democratic government, were to be suspended in their effective enforcement due to an endless transitional constitutional regime it imposed. It was the same "formula" of convening Constituent Assemblies departing from the Constitution then in force, that a few years later was also applied in Ecuador (2007), and ten years later was tried to be imposed in Honduras (2009), in a failed presidential attempt that in that case the Supreme Court declared unconstitutional. The idea, in any case, continues to be a recurrent one that in many countries has been proposed. The consequence of that process in Venezuela has been that since the election of the late President Hugo Chávez Frías in December 1998, whose only electoral program and proposal was to convene a Constituent Assembly, the country, formerly envied because of its democratic tradition and accomplishment during the second half of the 20th century, suffered a tragic setback regarding democratic standards, experiencing a continuous, persistent and deliberated institution demolishing process and destruction of democracy, never before occurred in the constitutional history of the country. At his death, and after fourteen years in power, the main political legacy of Chávez was no other than a country lacking the most essential elements of democracy as they are defined in the Inter American Democratic Charter, namely the assurance of the access to power and its exercise subject to the rule of law; the performing of periodic, free and fair elections based on universal and secret vote as an expression of the sovereignty of the people; the plural regime of political parties and organizations; the separation and independence of all branches of government, and the respect for human rights and fundamental freedoms. All this process is analyzed in this book, for which purpose the original text of the thirty Essays it contains, written and many of them published in different moments and occasions during the past years, has been preserved, so despite the repetition of some ideas and references, they remain as a testimony of the ideas expressed at the time when they were written, and on the course of the different events that led to the complete destruction of the constitutional rule and of the democratic principle in the country.

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© 2010 Fundación Editorial Jurídica Venezolana, Caracas. Venezuela
RIF: J-00107029-0

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