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Published:May 31st, 2009 12:14 EST
Hugo Chavez: King Of All Media

Hugo Chavez: King Of All Media

By Robert Paul Reyes

"Venezuela`s garrulous President Hugo Chavez on Thursday began a marathon four-day edition of his trademark television show to mark 10 years since the influential and widely watched program first hit the airwaves.

Chavez is a tireless talker who uses frequent television appearances to make policy announcements, berate opponents and even sing during rambling speeches often delivered in the florid vernacular of working class Venezuelans."

President Ronald Reagan was the Great Communicator, but no leader uses TV more effectively than President Hugo Chavez. Throughout his presidency, Chavez has hosted the live talk show "Alo Presidente".

No other international leader has the stamina, and ability to think on his feet to endure a four-day marathon on TV. Only Fidel Castro in his prime could compete with a motor-mouth like Chavez.

Obama might last a few hours, but if his teleprompter overheats and blows up he will be at a loss for words. John McCain wouldn`t last more than a couple of hours, after the thousandth time saying "My friends", the director would finally lose his cool and drag the old codger off the stage. Joe Biden wouldn`t last very long, at his rate of making about four major gaffes per hour, the Democrats would pull the plug before he managed to cause too much damage.

Chavez can wax eloquent not just on geopolitics and economic policies, but he has also dispensed sex education tips to teenagers and chatted about his weight. If Chavez became an American-style TV talk show host he would quickly eclipse Oprah Winfrey.

"Alo Presidente" should be must-see TV for American politicians who are lost without a telempromter and who are afraid to venture too far afield from the talking points written by their handlers.