Venezuela: The Jolly Green Giant

Venezuela's quinquennial election last week was complicated by more than two dozen competing parties and an electorate of 4,000,000 that is at least one-quarter illiterate. Nevertheless, an ingenious ballot preserved the essence of democratic form. At 15,315 polls, voters received a stack of colored cards and an envelope. Each card was a different color to represent a party, and the campaign publicity had been heavy enough that even illiterates could choose correctly from the spectrum. The incumbent Action Democrdtica, for example, had a pristine white card. Action's closest competition, the Social

Christian Party, had a green one, and to emphasize...

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