Lina Ron, revolutionary icon, dead at 51

March 6, 2011

Lina Ron, a controversial and iconic figure of the Chavez revolution is dead at 51 from a heart attack. Ron was one of those revolutionary figures that was hard to comprehend to many Venezuelans. Born in an oil industry family at the same time as Venezuela’s IVth. Republic democracy, Ron was even more “in your face” and provocative that Chavez himself. She first surfaced in 2001, leading a group that burned the US flag after the Sep. 11th. attacks.

Ron and her supporters had a total disregard for the law. She once rescued her husband from a police station where he was being held. She coordinated and participated in a number of attacks on TV station Globovision, as well as on Cardinal’s Urosa’s official home when he was still Archbishop. She always threatened with violence, not only to defend Chavez’ revolution, but to support it if it ever were to lose an election. After the last violent Globovision attack, she was ordered jailed by Chavez, only to be quietly freed a couple of months later.

She seemed like a very authentic revolutionary, but was accused of being funded by the Government to buy weapons and motorcycles. Her obviously fake blond hair was copied by admirers and seemed to some to be inconsistent with her revolutionary stance. It was copied at Carnival and in revolutionary circles. I will never forget taking a reporter around Caracas on election day and finding a large group of Ron look-alikes, with absurdly long blond wigs, dancing and signing in the middle of the street in downtown Caracas.

She was a true anarchist in a Government that uses anarchy, and used her, for its own goals, but always blames it on others. She founded a political party and only a few weeks ago said if Chavez lost the election in 2011 there would be “plomo” (lead, shooting, violence) She was a leader on her own right, even if many of us still have a hard time understanding how she came to be what she was in the Venezuela that we thought we knew.

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31 Responses to “Lina Ron, revolutionary icon, dead at 51”

  1. Bib Says:

    …. burn in hell !!!!


  2. […] Chavez desde 2007) , los "pranes" y los lideres chavistas como la fallecida piquetera Lina Ron (que ocupara con armas canales de TV opositores) y el ex alcalde de Caracas Juan Barreto, exhiben […]

  3. Flaca305 Says:

    The fact that Los Llanos were inhabited by outlaws escaping justice, and such, doesn’t completely explain the peripheral lawless society that has propagated there. Look at Australia, for example, it was founded as a penal colony, and Ned Keey, the outlaw was a revered personality in the history of this country’ development. However, with laws and civil justice this society has become an exemplary model for the socialism, that Chavez might be trying to promote. It’s not run by thugs, as in the case of Vzla, that areout to get their own. My question is why do the anglo/celtic/saxon-conquered countries have successful societies, whereas the Spaniard-conquered societies fail miserably with corruption/poverty/classism being accepted means and conditions?

  4. Canadian Says:

    Another commie bites the dust.

  5. Dave Hill Says:

    Typical violent, moronic communist ready to kill or destroy for that outdated, ludicrous ideology. Hated anyone who could be even remotely associated with anything European. Chavez’s revolution is still driven mostly by ethic/class/racial hatreds even though it is obviously collapsing into failed chaos and has actually worsened the country’s problems exponentially. Is there a massacre coming in Venezuela? Is the high murder rate under Chavez already a massacre of sorts? Good riddance to this idiot!!

  6. Roger Says:

    One persons Revolutionary is an others Bandit. Dead ones like Che and Villa live on as symbols of movements. Only time will tell if Ronisimo will live on with out her.

  7. caraqueño Says:

    Seems to me like too much Bolivian Marching Powder for Lina….

  8. Ira Says:

    Okay–where’s the story about Cubillas being indicted today by Spain as an ETA leader?

  9. Ira Says:

    All of those subsidized arepas with queso blanco killed her.

    Although she probably got them for free.

  10. paal Says:

    A lot of very interesting comments here. For me it would really be worthwhile to study some historical accounts on how Los Llanos and Venezuela were back in the days.

    My 2 cents on why Lina Ron became a leader. I will talk from what I perceive to be the standpoint of chavista activists in Caracas, which is the kind of people whose points of view I am most familiar with:

    Faced with (imaginary or not) violence from the upper classes, Lina Ron was a clear and trustworthy force that would undeniably deter opposition attempts at violently or pacifically threaten Chavez. The only way the opposition could have taken her out was with a bullet. The chavista activists know that a big portion of their ministers and politicians are corrupt sellouts. Unlike them, Lina Ron would seem to never negotiate away her position. Apart from that she had a very strong charismatic leadership amongst those who supported her.

    She was a clear defence against what chavistas see as undemocratic attempts to topple Chavez. So they saw her as a defender of justice, especially democratic and social justice.

  11. maria gonzalez Says:

    Well here are my few comments after reading the post and some of your responses.

    1.Miguel Octavio thank you for writing the article…a good one to re-read in 10 years.

    2.Two words came to my mind: Karma + resentida social…so Kepler I agree with you.

    3.About the llanos. I have been out of Venezuela for more than 25 years. In the last 12 years I have been in Venezuela few times, but I have noticed big changes in the few places that I have visited…more poverty but also more “consumismo” together with the highest number of people with BB and fake lolas! However the place where I found almost no changes was in the Llanos. I commented this to my husband and we agreed that probably the climate and extreme variation in conditions between the dry and wet seasons could be related to the lack of “progress”. Well you guy have place my observations into a historical context.

    4. About health care in Venezuela…you are correct Frank, I am also 51 and I will taking cholesterol pill for years…my condition has a strong genetic component, so I may drop dead tomorrow but who know if in the case of “sra Ron” who know if she even knew she had high cholesterol…together with the bad karma and the constant a.r.r.e.c.h.e.r.a.s. A very bad combination!

  12. pol47 Says:

    Flash – Flash – Flash

    Caracas Venezuela 07 March, 2011

    President Hugo Chavez to hold state
    funeral for his long time supporter;
    Lina Ron based upon her long time
    support for human rights and freedom
    of the press in Venezuela.

    Interment to follow alongside Bolivar.

  13. Roy Says:

    Miguel,

    I admire, but cannot emulate, yours an others abilities to be so dispassionate and balanced about this… uh… woman. It is entirely appropriate to reflect on the nature of the society that produced her.

    However, all I can come up with is “A cada cochino se llega a su domingo.”

  14. tleon Says:

    One less Chevez bitch to worry about and a lot more Chavistas to go until the people of Venezulea have their human rights and fredom restored.

    Viva Venzeuela

  15. Kepler Says:

    One last thing to mention: the Llanos were always lagging behind the rest of Venezuela, perhaps even behind Amazonas. Native Americans in the Amazonas region did practice more agriculture and were better organised than the native Americans in the Western Llanos, according to Humboldt.

    Without irrigation and technology the area was much more difficult to tackle than anywhere else, so it was mainly that slowed down the penetration there. The native Americans in those areas, to a big extent by virtue of their environment – either everything flooded or absolutely dry-, were lagging behind other groups, specially in the Western part.

    Read this part of what the scientist wrote while crossing what is now Guárico (early 1800).

    “We were offered, in a calabash, some yellow, muddy, and fetid water, drawn from a neighbouring pool. The indolence of the inhabitants of the Llanos is such that they do not dig wells, though they know that almost everywhere, at ten feet deep, fine springs are found in a stratum of conglomerate, or red sandstone. After suffering during one half of the year from the effect of inundations, they quietly resign themselves, during the other half; to the most distressing deprivation of water. The old negro advised us to cover the cup with a linen cloth, and drink as through a filter, that we might not be incommoded by the smell, and might swallow less of the yellowish mud suspended in the water. We did not then think that we should afterwards be forced, during whole months, to have recourse to this expedient.”

    http://www.gutenberg.org/cache/epub/7014/pg7014.html

    The German version, closer to the French original and more complete, says “laziness”, not indolent.
    He usually did not say such a thing lightly.
    He described how most big owners remained in the cities on the coast and let some slaves manage things, but for some cities as San Juan and Calabozo.

    I haven’t read special reports on that but from what I gather those villagesthat had started to blossom completely collapsed with Independence (think Boves).

    After the independence the area was in complete control of the “big liberators”, all those military and their amigos.

    We never had a real reform of land property one way or the other, everything remained in the limbo.

    And yes, add to this the petrostate, the oil towns that appeared out of the blue in the fifties and sixties around El Sombrero in Guárico, all around Anzoátegui and in Monagas, and you have the recipe for disaster.

    We got these golems.

    The commies could find good ground there, specially after AD failed to deliver.

  16. Kepler Says:

    Miguel, look at one of the things Lina twitted some days ago:

    “no,mal informado,soy hija d preso pero no se te olvide, la carcel es para los hombres¡ en toda la extencion de la palabra”

    So, basically: si matas a alguien eres macho.
    What a role model. Sad figure.

    Alexander von Humboldt wrote several times about how dangerous the Llanos were back then, unlike the Coast, because of the many criminals who had escaped to such huge region and the lack of rule of law.
    And he wrote warningly, as I said earlier, about the dangers of letting that area without control and development.

    The Llanos could have become more the cradle for many Carlos del Pozo y Sucre

    http://es.wikipedia.org/wiki/Carlos_del_Pozo_y_Sucre

    Instead, the Lina Rons and Chávezes have been the ones who became dominant.

  17. metodex Says:

    The topics discussed here about the llanos(thanks kepler) really opened my mind.I hadn’t thought oif that.Ever.
    It all looks somewhat clear.But i’d like to add something.
    When you add to the “cocktail” the millions of petrodollars and the states powers at your knees, it all crumbles and you become the same shit as fidel,lukashenko and others.It’s all the same shit.
    But anyways, good insight on the llanos mentality and backgrounds.
    But seriously,what is suggested to do about this, because despise this being a mentality that has been going for ages, it is very destructive long term, and specially with power on their side.
    I wouldn’t give power to a maracucho listening to vallenato,driving a huge pick up with a girl with a boob job, a bottle of whisky and guns.And yes,it’s a common sight here in Mcbo.Gaita is much much less common than vallenato, almost gone actually.

  18. firepigette Says:

    Mick,

    You are quite right

  19. Frank Says:

    It’s interesting this topic has not come up regarding her demise, but how about the cruel reality of the lack of proper health care access in revolutionary venezuela that Chavez has been “delivering” for the last 12 years. Millions of dollars and Cubans have been deployed yet a person with modest means, although great political influence, dies at the young age of 51 from a heart attack. Revolution or not, all parties involved should realize that death is imminent and unfortunately for those entrenched in the revolution, it often comes sooner rather than later because of the lack of services they so fervently demand, yet their leaders continue to fail to deliver.

  20. mick Says:

    What a concept! We get our principles from our families. I think we just made an argument for social culture ruling our decisions, GOOD and BAD, rather than rational thought. This would explain why dictators are actually supported by the very people they oppress. Much like beaten wives making excuses for their violent husbands.

  21. concerned Says:

    It blows my theory. I thought for years that Lina was Chavez in drag. Just one of the alter egos of a twisted lunatic with multi personalities.

  22. firepigette Says:

    Here is typical music from the llanos, very poetic, however it shows an attitude of not ” pidiendo permiso a nadie” and the suggestion of being unrestrained by the law or rules of any kind.Here you can hear inherently violent tendencies coupled with independence of spirit, and horrific machismo.

  23. firepigette Says:

    Great post Miguel.

    The only definition of authentic that could be powerful and positive is the definition that defines the truth to which one connects with one’s innermost being.But the simple outer definition of authentic “To be consistent with one’s own values” is sometimes good, and sometimes bad.In the case of Lina Ron I would say it was quite bad.

    Kepler’s comments on the llanos are interesting in that we need to look at why something happens.We can describe WHAT is happening until we are blue in the face, but it gets us nowhere at some point.Understanding ‘whys’ will help get rid of the problem, now and in the future.While I do not recommend stalking each and every person from the llanos with suspicion, I do believe that understanding the llanos mentality could be of use.When I lived in San Juan de los Morros my uncle worked in San Fernando de Apure building roads.I wanted to travel there to see the area but he absolutely prohibited me from doing so alone.

    He said that it was way too dangerous, because many folks there would become absolutely violent in front of people and situations that they did not understand.I saw people like that in San Juan as well, as it is the Gateway to the llanos.It is a place where values and regional informal laws have a life and power of their own, unbeholden to our ordinary understanding .Couple that with isolation, extreme heat, superstition that is greater than this world,clannishness,belief in the reality of other worldly powers that take on more meaning than God himself at times,toughness, machismo, violence, and all the factors that allow people to ‘survive’ in harsh environments and you get quite a cocktail.I could tell so many stories.

  24. elroy Says:

    That ol’ perico will get the old ones everytime,she should have left the booze,dope & cigarretes alone!!!!!!!!

  25. Kepler Says:

    Miguel,

    That was a very good post.

    It seems to me it could be interesting to think a bit about why Venezuela produced a Lina Ron.
    It is useful to ask, no matter how much we dislike them and how clearly nutties and violent they are, how those Lina Rons came to be in the first place.

    One thing that comes to my attention time after time is the Llanos issue.

    Chávez is from the Llanos.
    The same goes with:

    Diosdado
    Chacín
    Silly Flowers
    Soto Rojas
    William Lara (RIP)
    Manuitt
    and many, many others from then or now.
    They are over-represented among Chavistas, by far. It is not people from Barinas, but from all over the Llanos. If you try to find out who the fiercest Chavistas are, they are almost all from there or their parents were from there.

    I am sure a lot of the others have parents who came from the Llanos AND were not well-established hacienda owners.

    I talk to a lot of people in Carabobo in poor and middle class areas.
    I ask what kind of people are voting still for Chávez. They say the same over and over again: “la mayoría no son de aquí”. With that they mean people who have arrived in the region less than, say, 30 years ago.

    It is that poor in Carabobo whose grandparents were living in Carabobo have smelled the coffee long time ago. One exception to this is the very poor area along the coast with a large percentage of people with strong African roots, but then I would not be surprised: the level of education there is even worse than in the region where my poor grandparents grew up and oppo politicians never take time in Morón or east of Puerto Cabello (never mind most people do travel through those areas when going to the beach).

    I think this Llanos trend has a lot to do with the particular historical disconnection they had, with the complete caudillo mentality they grew up in, with their experience in places where the rule of law was even more absent than in our coastal region, where myths took hold on a much stronger scale. I do think our long time history casts a shadow on us. The Llanos were conquered over 150 years after the Conquista started. The real settlement started only 250 years after the Conquista. The destruction that took place through the Independence and the Civil Wars then were worse than elsewhere.
    Maisanta, Hugo’s ancestor, was another Llanero who committed homicide in the name of some “revolution”, even if he just wanted to replace dictator Gómez, like many other wannabes-dictators.

    Lina Ron’s dad went to jail for homicide. This is a woman with lots of problem and who became what we call a resentida. Of course, she could have managed her trauma in a million more positive ways. Still, I think it is important to understand the environment in which she grew up. Mythical saviours and images were embraced in a much more fanatical way than elsewhere.

    I checked out the election patterns for Lina Ron’s birth place, Anaco. Some years ago it was PSUV territory. Now it is no more, even if the candidates have been pathetic AD dinosaurs. Imagine. This is good news. Still, Anaco is relatively close to the coast. We need to go beyond, specially to places with a substantial population, like Maturín, El Tigre, Calabozo, Acarigua.

    The leaders of the alternative forces should pay more attention to the people who grew up in similar environments as Lina Ron – not to Lina Rons themselves as they are beyond redemption -.

  26. geronl Says:

    Cruella DeVille of Venezuela

  27. jeffry house Says:

    Suggestion for a pre-emptive cultural attack: write the Broadway musical now; don’t wait for a Chavista to do it.

  28. moctavio Says:

    Oh yeah, Saint Gaddafi is still being defended. Just think 6 million people in Lybia, an investment fund with 100 billion and still 20% poverty in his country.

  29. mick Says:

    Is the ministry still saying there is no bloodshed, that this is all just propaganda the US cooked up to get their oil too?

    I find it funny that so many are so gullible about the US wanting to steal everyone’s oil. We won’t ever drill our own oil in the Gulf. We didn’t do anything to develop any in Iraq, even though it would have been like taking candy from a baby and we could have somehow said it was to pay for the war.

  30. Groucho Marxist Says:

    “She was a leader on her own right, even if many of us still have a hard time understanding how she came to be what she was”

    In order to understand how she became a leader in chavismo, all you need to know is this: chavistas have the intellectual maturity of a 10-year-old child.

    Tthink back to when you were 10 years old. Who was the leader among your peers? Was it the smartest one? The best behaved? The most accomplished? Or the one that talked the loudest, scorned rules and authority the most, and tried to wreck havoc wherever he/she went?

  31. CarlosElio Says:

    “…even if many of us have a hard time understanding how she came to be [a leader on her own right]”

    Understanding the social dynamics that catapulted her to a position of leadership would deserve a mention in any prestigious sociological society, because it is very strange that such a person with her manners would be considered a leader. But she was, as the post indicates “a leader on her own right.”

    Some good social scientist would offer a plausible story about the rise of her leadership, but I am more interested in the demise of her physical being: heart attack. In the grand scheme of things it is good that she is dead. Her contributions to the creation of material of social capital was null at best, and patently negative in most cases. And I believe that such negativity is among the primary causes of her heart attack.

    Under the names of Positive Psychology and Positive Organization, an immense body of scientific literature has emerged over the last few years documenting the effects of positive behavior and positive values on the individual and the organizations those individuals create. Leading scholars in the field are Martin Seligman (psychology) and Kim Cameron (organizational behavior). Scientific studies indicate that people who exhibit positive values like forgiveness, compassion, tolerance, respect, and the like live longer and more productive lives. The physiology of their bodies sustain tissue in better terms than that of negative individuals.

    At the organizational level, positive organizations have lower turn over, higher productivity, more creativity, better customer retention, and higher profits.

    It is a fair assessment to see chavez’s government as an engine of negativity and Lina Wrong as a quintessential representative of that negativity. She paid with her early demise the wages of negativity, but it doesn’t end there. Many leaders of chavismo will die early deaths, it cannot be otherwise, but still it doesn’t end there. The negativity of chavismo acts as a dragging force diminishing the output of Venezuelan organizations in a global competitive world, were laggard economies spell misfortune and early death for all of its inhabitants.

    In a rational world, the current government of Venezuela would carry a warning like cigarette packages do, alerting its consumer citizens that it is dangerous to their health.


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