Protests against the rule of self-proclaimed Chavez successor (as he likes to constantly remind everyone) Nicolas Maduro have been raging in Venezuela for going on two weeks now, and the death toll from the violence is up to at least twelve. In the capital city of Caracas, the protesters have started setting up barricades around the city while Maduro is still encouraging government paramilitaries on motorcycles to help him fight the “Fascist coup d’etat” being “waged by the extreme right,” or something, via Reuters:

Anti-government demonstrators set up barricades and started fires in Venezuela’s capital on Monday despite calls from within the opposition to rein in protests in which at least 12 people have died in the OPEC nation.

Traffic slowed to a crawl around Caracas, and many people stayed at home, as protesters burned trash and piled debris along main avenues a day after opposition leader Henrique Capriles called on them to keep demonstrations peaceful. …

Capriles, 41, was invited to meet Maduro in the afternoon as part of a gathering of mayors and governors that could open up communications between the two sides but may not be able to stem the nearly two weeks of street violence. …

They also want Maduro to disarm pro-government gangs and address national issues ranging from crime to shortages of basic products. Hardline student protesters, though, are demanding that Maduro step down, less than a year into his term.

But forget the country’s rampant murder rate, drastic inflation rate, and mass shortages of even the most goods like flour and toilet paper: All this trouble is clearly emanating from those conspiratorial fascists in Washington, D.C. determined to overthrow Maduro for their own mysterious ends. Horrible American capitalist-imperialists like, oh, you know — Marco Rubio. Obviously. Via the Daily Caller:

The American media didn’t notice, but the same day Sen. Marco Rubio condemned “Nicolás Maduro and his thugs,” the Venezuelan president publicly ranted about the Florida senator, read from his statement, and attacked him as “un loco” (a crazy man). …

Asked for comment about the “loco” slur, Rubio’s office provided the following statement from Senator Rubio: “Maduro looks like the typical tyrannical coward, attacking those who speak the truth about him and authorizing violence against innocent people from the comfort of his office. We need more people calling out his abuses, and more media outlets to focus on what’s going on in Venezuela. Ultimately, Maduro should listen to the Venezuelan people that are demanding real democracy and accountability.”