AP - The leader of a student protest movement that has emerged as a major challenge to Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez has won a $500,000 prize from a U.S.-based libertarian think tank.

The pro-free-market Cato Institute announced Thursday that law student Yon Goicoechea was chosen for his leadership as an advocate for freedom and democracy.


The think tank, which is headquartered in Washington, said Goicoechea will receive the Milton Friedman Prize for Advancing Liberty next month in New York. The prize is named after the Nobel Prize-winning economist who died in 2006.


Chavez denies that his government is restricting personal freedoms and says student leaders are being manipulated by the United States.


Goicoechea says he often receives threats due to his activism but isn't concerned about the government's response to the award from a U.S.-based organization.

"The government already says we're financed by the CIA. It already says we're paid by the empire. So if they say it one more time, it really isn't that important," he said.

The Cato Institute, a nonprofit public policy research foundation that lobbies for individual liberty, limited government and free markets, says it accepts no government funding.

RLCC Comment: The Cato Institute doesn't need government financing, because it's funded by U.S. billionaires, especially those in the tobacco industry who traffic in highly addictive, carcinogenic drug delivery products, mostly cigarettes. That's why they are so laissez faire ("let do"). They want to be left alone, unregulated, so they can continue on addicting new customers whose lives they have short change and shorten.

Also, receiving a prize named after Milton Friedman who helped the totalitarian, brutal dictator, General Augusto Pinochet, of Chile further enrich the rich of Chile is no honor. He also is largely responsible for the current global economic crisis due to his advocacy of deregulation. Without anyone looking over their shoulders, the greedy raped everything in sight. Now we have more soup lines and tent cities, foreclosures, bankruptcies, unemployment, suicides, pollution, global warming, and on and on down the list of results caused by the stupid economic system that is based on selfishness.

As for the CIA, of course they are heavily involved with the opposition to Chavez. It's what they do. They work for the Plutocrats who own the Empire. Everyone knows that. They don't ever bring freedom anywhere. They only open markets so their rich masters can move in to takeover and extract the wealth from the land and people even if it's over the dead bodies of children. It's a dog-eat-dog world in the eyes of the Plutocrats, so they, the Plutocrats pay others to be their dogs doing their dirty work.

It's too bad the journalist aren't free to write the truth. The capitalist for whom they work won't let them. It's very costly to real freedom. Of course, those so-called journalists could write elsewhere for righteousness' sake rather then being mammon worshipers. If they would all do that, the plutocrats wouldn't have the minions to keep the evil worldly system going anymore.

Link to source-webpage, obtained via: Yahoo! News: World - Latin America, April 24, 2008, 12:48pm

Tom Usher

About Tom Usher

Employment: 2008 - present, website developer and writer. 2015 - present, insurance broker. Education: Arizona State University, Bachelor of Science in Political Science. City University of Seattle, graduate studies in Public Administration. Volunteerism: 2007 - present, president of the Real Liberal Christian Church and Christian Commons Project.