Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Three more idiocies for you today, directly from Chavez himself

In the last post I gave you two chavista idiocies.  Coming back home tonight I can add three from the big man himself.

Idiocies du jour

You can tell that chavistas are losing it from a mere glance to papers to Chavez own stupid mistakes during cadenas.  Two little gems for you today.

Yoani Sanchez on barrio adentro

Do not miss it.  Even in Cuba they know what Barrio Adentro is all about!!!  Barrio Adentro, Corazon Afuera!

Monday, August 30, 2010

Bolivar's sisters

A bitter day for us civilized people...

Franklin Brito is dead, another crime to condemn Chavez for

Chavez has officially, inescapably, his first un-washable blood on his hands since he is president of Venezuela (he has a lot of un-washable blood from 1992, but that is another story).

Franklin Brito, the courageous farmer willing to die of hunger strike for the law to be applied correctly to his case is finally dead, in the custody of the government military health services, without them, according to twitter, allowing his relatives to claim his body as I type.  Soviet style of disposing of dissidents, call them crazy and sick, inter them, and kill them slowly.

Tal Cual summarizes the hard fight of Franklin Brito for his rights, and how the military goons of the regime took him away into custody at the military hospital of Caracas where in the indifference of the bureaucracy of the regime he died slowly  but surely, never surrendering his will.  her was 49 years old and so strong was his conviction of his right that he even cut himself one of his fingers to draw attention from the regime's bureaucrats.

Accomplices in that murder is the Vice President Elias Jaua when he was INTI chief, and his appointed successor at the INTI Juan Carlos Loyo.  Both will need to answer to justice one day because it was their duty to find a solution and they did not do it because they were too afraid of making Chavez look bad.  Now the three have blood on their hands.

PS: at least in the Netherlands they opened a blog for condolences.  Please go and sign up.

Venconomy on the Chavez political apartheid

Following the flack from Chavez telling Petare inhabitants to drop dead, I should post below the editorial in English of Veneconomy today.

The 2010 election predictions: Llanos

This is deep Venezuela, the large central plains, a chavista area and in some states perhaps even a bastion.  The reason is quite simple and goes beyond the Llanero origin of Chavez: the wave of land grabs, the expropriation of a considerable amount of large farms have created a generalized impoverishment of the area and thus an increased dependency of the people from state alms.  More than anywhere else we can see the contrast between the few urban areas of the Llanos which still can on occasion show an opposition presence, and the rural districts which have become a terre de mission for opposition candidates (missionary lands, french political vocabulary).

Cojedes

Chavez, rain maker!

Sycophancy in the bolibanana revolution never stops reaching new heights.  Now it was the vice-president Jaua at the Guri damn this weekend to open as a formal ceremony what is normally a routine operation: the water gets too high?  you open the flood gates....  But according to Jaua it was not the rain alone that allowed this miracle (never mind that there are still two months left of rainy season in the Guayana highlands), it was the wise polices of electrical rationing of our beloved El Surpemo forgetting to mention that the miracle was due to the closing up of aluminum and steel industries of Bolivar state).  He also announced that the regime would reopen that production (forgetting to explain why they did not do that already since it was clear that the water line was going up steadily.  Could it be because of the juicy bribes associated to the importations of steel products that we stopped to produce ourselves?).  Praise for the witchcraft of cloud seeding form Cuban specialists was included.

It s a sad day when an exhausted regime has no other achievement to offer the country than a good rainy season....

...whoever draws the short straw at State and gets sent to Caracas

Read this and enjoy! I do not have a Wall Street Journal subscription but I have friends:

Sunday, August 29, 2010

Chavez tries to backtrack on his "drop dead!" to Venezuelans living in opposition managed areas.

I am sorry for this not very eloquent or fancy title.  I was letting you last Friday that Chavez had revealed himself his hatred of whatever he does not understand, does not agree with him, etc, etc...  hallmarks of course of people with overall little education (they call them fascists too as curiously commie leaders tend to be a tad more educated, or at least well read like Fidel).  He simply said, but with anger, that he could not approve of health care funds for hospitals run by not PSUV people.

Saturday, August 28, 2010

The 2010 election predictions: The Andes

The Andes region, Trujillo, Merida and Tachira states, used to be seen as a common entity, from their high mountain physiognomy to their political similarities.  Not any more.  Tachira is now decidedly in the opposition camp while Trujillo has truly become an unconquerable chavista fortress.  Merida remains mercurial but then again it is the largest of the three, the one with the most flat land, the hot and humid region of El Vigia, the one with the highest peak of the country. Let's start with the simplest one: Trujillo.

Trujillo

For some reason this northerner of the Andean states has become a bastion of chavismo. In 2008 Hugo Cabezas was dropped out of nowhere by Chavez and still managed to win with 170,000 votes, the double than its next rival from the coalition opposition. And if opposition was in the hope of better days, it should keep in mind that the candidate of the Communist Party and PPT coalition (Trujillo was the rare division within chavismo) got 38,000, half of what the opposition won.

Friday, August 27, 2010

When we were happy and did not know it: Nestor Zavarce is dead

Anyone of us born in the 50ies and the 60ies in Venezuela was raised with "El Pajaro Chogüi", Nestor Zavarce biggest hit besides one of the very few original songs ever written for New Year "Cinco para las doce" (as much as I like Chigüi I dislike Cinco. But apparently I am an original on that....)



Zavarce's songs were these of a Venezuela awakening to democracy, where everything still seemed possible, when we barely were ten million people and Caracas had still a spring like constant weather. The "Pajaro chogüi" in spite of its dreary topic still manages to be effervescently optimistic for some unexplainable reason.  That was Venezuela music then, not the drab or trite or alien stuff we hear now which has very little of Venezuela if you ask me.   Not that today nothing good happens, the Onechot video I posted a few days ago certainly proves that essential stuff can still be produced, but it is a competley different world.

Not to sound like and old gizzard, but the Caracas of my childhood in the 60ies bears no resemblance with the hell that it has become today.  Nor does the music.  Zavarce was still a link to our musical past, with Torrealbla, Romero and many others whose traditions you would be in deep trouble trying to sieve for in today's scene, even within chavismo who pretends to return to our sources but whose supporters en masse have probably little idea who Zavarce was.  Never mind he was also an Adeco...  Now what people want is escape and party music.  They might be right, but I ain't following.

Now, at 74, Zavarce died today. A page is turned.

PS1: listen to the words and think about whehter such a song could be written in today PC world.
PS2: the video sucks but the sound track is OK, which is what matters since by the time Zavarce retired TV MTV did not exits yet.

Chavez to people going to opposition run hospitals: drop dead!

If you were wondering how morally low Chavez could fall you were in for a treat yesterday.  He stopped his Alo Presidente of Sundays for the campaign bet he retook his cadenas last night.  And he said among other inane and awful things something truly despicable: he will not give the necessary funds for Hospital Perez de Leon because this one is managed by the opposition mayor of Petare, Carlos Ocariz.  In other words, you are served notice, if you get sick you need to make sure you go to a hospital that is managed by a PSUV municipality.

I do not know where to start on how despicable Chavez has become, on how ready he is to bring the country to a civil war just for him to have a chance to retain power.  These words are a clear indication of his mental state, on his long ago taken the decision that the only way he can hold onto power is through extreme division of the country.  As such he is the faithful follower of the totalitarian tradition of the Castro brothers. As such he will not have any trouble in starting killing folks through lack of hospitals while he gets ready to kill them though direct shooting of protests. 

Thursday, August 26, 2010

Miss Universe and Crime

I wanted to write about the latest silly controversy that occupy Venezuelan minds but AML sent me that article in Investors Daily and most of the work is done for me.

See, In Venezuela this week we are not discussing crime, Pudreval, the Colombian invasion, and what not.  No, the two issues that are pressing us are 1) how come Miss Venezuela was not in the last 15 finalist of the Miss Universe competition last Sunday and 2) what did the outgoing Miss Universe meant when she waved a Venezuelan flag with 7 stars instead of the official 8 star flag.  IBD does a great job of linking her silent protest (?) with the crime wave that kills us, literally.  I just need to add a few precisions for those who might not get all of the story.

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

The 2010 election predictions: Zulia

For the past two days I have been stuck at home with all sorts of contract workers that could only come this week.  So in between bouts of supervision, checking work e-mails and some phone calls I have time to speed up my electoral analysis.  Thus we move on to Zulia, our very own "big enchilada".

Zulia is actually a good bellwether state even if the result there is predictable: the opposition, or rather the UNT, will win.  The only question is whether they will manage a grand slam or just a comfortable majority of the seats allotted.  And that is why it is a bellwether state because the more the opposition manages to progress in a state that already belongs to them, the more it speaks of chavismo degradation in ways that we cannot see in, say, Cojedes where a 10% drop in chavismo does not necessarily mean much.

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

The 2010 election predictions: Lara, Falcon, Yaracuy

For the next installment I will go local.  My geographical division is a rather artificial, a regional division kept for simplicity, the three states put together, sometimes even with Portuguesa which makes me cringe.  Falcon is really three areas, Lara two and even small Yaracuy can be split into three.  But none of them really fits with the neighboring region which are more specific culturally, and larger.  And thus their grouping together by default.

We are here in more or less chavista territory although there is significant trouble in Lara.  Thus we will start by Yaracuy, my home state, which can be dealt with rather fast.  Then we will move to Falcon which can be dealt almost as fast and then to Lara which is another story together.  At the end I will have enough predictions added up to be able to put up the first half moon putative composition of the next National Assembly.

Yaracuy

Monday, August 23, 2010

Is Chavez going to censor the WSJ and the NYT over Venezuela's crime?

Chavismo might have been able to silence temporarily Tal Cual and El Nacional on Venezuelan crime but oversea the famous El Nacional picture has revealed quite a naked emperor.

Maria Anastasia O'Grady focus on the crime wave on an electoral point of view, reminding the world that electing a responsible government that will actually rule for the better of ALL in the country is a tough task, though the latest crime wave might help along in wakign up people.

If the WSJ is more of an OpEd piece, Simon Romero comes up at the New York Times with a complete and detailed article that includes a great video, the cover front of El Nacional, a reference to artist Onechot being threatened and the latest.  He delves in detail on what is common knowledge among the informed people in Venezuela: that are our crime rte is now worse than anyone else, including Iraq, by far.  he also delves on who is the most affected by that crime wave, by far: the poorer classes, the ones that supposedly chavismo was going to favor. We have to admire the work of Romero, writing one of the most demolishing article on chavismo ever written, just by narrating recent facts.  Impressive!

So, what's next Hugo?  Are you going to have the front page of the New York Times today censored?

UPDATE: the New York Times piece is already translated in Spanish in part at Tal Cual !  Goes to tell you.

The 2010 election predictions: Caracas Metro area

To test my fabulous prediction system, without safety net, let's start by the Caracas Metropolitan area which includes the states of Miranda and Vargas and the Caracas Libertador separate municipal district.

Vargas

This state is the easiest one to analyze in that area.  A small state it sends four representatives, two through list vote and two single district.  If you remember the inequities of the Venezuelan system, there are single districts which can have up to three representatives elected through 3 votes (1).  That is, if you organize your electors well enough and the opposing side runs divided you can get 100% of the seats with as little as 40% of the vote.  This system was used in the US South pre voting rights era to concentrate black vote and favor white vote.  In chavista Venezuela it is used to make sure that chavismo does not need 50% of the vote to obtain up to 60% of the seats.  In short, it is possible for chavismo to get ALL seats in Vargas as long as the PSUV gets twice the votes of the opposition.  Fortunately this will not happen and the opposition will get one List seat.

Sunday, August 22, 2010

Chavez regime permanent propaganda machine, insults included

It is still amazing that to this day people outside of Venezuela still cannot comprehend the extent of the Chavez propaganda machinery at home, for the simple reason that such amount of propaganda is now inconceivable in democratic countries.  Thus people cannot believe what is happening in Venezuela.  That is, until they spend a week in a hotel room of Caracas...  To give you a sense of the degree of propaganda that we are subjected to I am posting this little video that I filmed myself from my TV set (explaining the poor quality).  Fret not, it is barely 45 second long.  This video is a report of a cell phone assembly plant in Venezuela, a "socialist enterprise", and it ends up insulting those who do not think such an endeavor is the latest cat's meow.



There is no need really to translate the video, I will just point out the salient moments.

The intro from Globovision

Saturday, August 21, 2010

The 2010 election predictions: general terms

I have been dragging forever but at barely one month from voting day it is time to dust my files, gather the new information and settle to work out my predictions for next month National Assembly elections.  Thus this first post limited to general consideration of the situation and the parameters I will use to predict the results.  I do not know whether I will be able to be done by September 26 (the more so that Chavez is edgy and makes me write a lot on some other stuff ) but I will try to cover as much as possible.  For more detail on what comes below you can refer to many earlier posts under the tag "2010 elections" which specifically cover some of the issues mentioned.

General electoral conditions

Friday, August 20, 2010

Chavez plan to lower crime rate

Weil today reveals to us Chavez's plans to drop the murder rate in Venezuela.

"Hey, hey"  "We caught you bastard!"

Oh, and he also told us that we need to wait for 20 years until things get good.   I kid you not, he said so!  there will be no more crime in 20 years!  I can't wait, literally!  And to add insult to injury he said that all that crime wave is a media international conspiracy and that as a matter of fact things WERE WORSE before he was elected, even if his own numbers show almost a triplication of the murder rate since he came to power.

Psychotic Dissociation, thy nickname is Hugo Rafael!

Thursday, August 19, 2010

Stylistic violence in Venezuela by Onechot

UPDATED!!!  Onechot now a target of chavismo!!!

Through Juan Cristobal (I would have never stumbled upon such a video on my own) comes a most impressive Zeitgeist-y video by Venezuelan artist Onechot.  In English, Reggae like.


Rotten Town from El Flying Monkey on Vimeo.

Update: we learned today that VTV has asked for an investigation on the video linked on top, which I learned today that it was issued this week. One of the silly accusations is that Onechot resides now in Spain! No wonder! Since there is no copyright protection in Venezuela artists are almost forced out of the country if they want to make a living out of their art.  I do not know if you have ever watched Tania Diaz talk shows in VTV, she could well be the poster person for those suffering for a total lack of humor.  The regime is really hurting....

Fascism is not just censorship, it is active destruction of different opinions

And today chavismo gave us yet another shinny example of how intolerant they have become.  Fascists, we should say without any fear.
Expo Pudreval this morning
Voluntad Popular which I mentioned a few posts ago when they went to the CICPC seat to deliver an envelope only to be received by a human barrier of police bureaucrats, made another statement today that was promptly destroyed by chavista goons.

Expo Pudreval this afternoon, after a visit by the red shirted goons of chavismo.  Observe how all the posters have been torn down and thrown on the floor of the containers.
Leopoldo Lopez explains how to avoid future Pudrevals.
The initiative was very simple and yet brilliant: find a container like those who carried the food gone to waste in the corruption scheme of PDVAL and make inside a poster exhibit explaining to the people the magnitude of the loss, the extent of the corruption and more.  You can see plenty of pictures of interested people visiting and their tour guides in the Flicker page of Voluntad Popular.  I have selected some pictures to illustrate this post.

For memory, PDVAL imported at least 120,000 tons of food (some estimates go up to 180,000) and let them rot through sheer incompetence.  When I wrote my first post on that I was outraged that 20,000 tons had been lost.  Now, well, we are starting to count the paid for tons of food that actually never even made it to Venezuela even if it was for the compost pile.  The PDVAL sandal is now called PUDREVAL, which loosely translated means rotting-PDVAL.

People are interested
Sure enough, within hours a gang of chavista goons in red shirts came to tear down the place.  So, it is not only that you cannot express in the newspapers your opinions or expose news, now even in the streets you cannot demonstrate and claim for your rights, in particular for the rights to demand accounting from public officials.

This is moving fast from neo-totalitarianism to plain Cuban fascisto-communism.  It is not enough to censor newspaper pages anymore, even if, supposedly, it is for 4 weeks "only", in coincidence with an electoral campaign that does not look too good for the regime.  Now you need to shut them up at the source, from the start.  Which of course speaks a lot of the decomposed state chavismo is reaching really fast, more decomposed morally than the rotten food was physically.

Idiots everywhere

Today we read that a poll in the US reveals that 20% of Americans believe Obama is a Muslim.  OK, I am not going into that one but I am going to draw a parallel with the Venezuelan situation.  Chavez has made  it a specialty to lie in an outright fashion when he is not twisting the facts ad libitum.  And believe me, these days he is setting new records.  In fact, I cannot remember the last time I heard Chavez and thought he might be giving us straight talk. 

So, the question is, how many people in Venezuela are only too willing to believe the most outrageous bullshitting of Chavez?  I am not talking of those that vote for Chavez for transactional reasons (bolsa de comida, un trabajito) I am talking about those that believe in Chavez, hook, line and sinker.  This is not a mere idle speculation, I think that pollsters should investigate that.  The opposition strategy should target its message an meager resources in such a way as they do not waste them on these people that nothing ever will convince otherwise, until a new messiah comes around.

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Little events that do not get the notice they should get

Eliot Engel is a Congressman from the Bronx and as such a certifiable Liberal.  Look at his web site and he is not one hiding away from his links with Nancy Pelosi.  Thus, even if Voice of America is a tad partial on the way it handles interviews over Cuba and Venezuela, the interview of Congressman Engel should be noticed.

Censorship in Venezuela: Petkoff states his case

Chavez tearing up El Nacional
In what I suspect will be a long series of posts I might as well start with the translation of Teodoro Petkoff editorial in today's Tal Cual, newspaper which is for the time being forbidden to publish a certain type of information. The editorial in English first, with the original Spanish at the end.

-------------

Civil Disobedience

Those who knows Tal Cual may have noticed that in this newspaper the so called "red page" does not exist. We have never practiced journalism describing events associated with blood, particularly in its graphic expressions.

When I took  the direction of El Mundo, in 1999, we eliminated alarmist headlines and gruesome photographs of the red page. It is a matter of principle, strictly personal, that surely not many media professionals share. I do not deny that I may be wrong, but this has been a standard of conduct consistently maintained until today.

"CENSURADO", chavismo finally comes out of the closet of naked censorship

This image is the front page of El Nacional today.  "Inappropriate material" had to be removed, and thus El Nacional returns to the strategy during Perez Jimenez (and other dictatorships elsewhere) of leaving blank spaces where there were supposed to be news that were not "fit to print".

The censorship measure will apply to all papers and with more severity to El Nacional.  It will last at the very least for 4 weeks, those of the electoral campaign duration which underlines the purely political decision of the a judicial system receiving direct orders from the regime.  The implications of this deserve a longer post later but I thought it was important to announce that and to give you the only two links in English with some information available so far.  Do not worry, I am sure that plenty are on their way as in Spanish it is already a worldwide scandal.
The Walls Street Journal.
The AP

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

10 Voluntad Popular putting in check 300 CICPC agents

CICPC demanding respect!  Hahahah!
We have to admire the group Voluntad Popular formed by Leopoldo Lopez and a few people from different groups and lot of young people.  Ignored by the MUD opposition umbrella group under the excuse that "they came in late", denied access to media for quite a while until finally Leopoldo went back to Globovision, accused of division making and what not, it runs out that they are doing a lot of the stuff that the opposition campaign should be doing and does not.  And yet, as far as I know I am not sure that Voluntad Popular even has a couple of candidates....

Today for example as the regime clamps down on El Nacional and Tal Cual and the MUD is responding at a glacial speed, Voluntad Popular simply sent a handful of supporters to the CICPC (our FBI like thing) to demand that the crime numbers be published by the government, something that the regime has stopped publishing since 2005.  At least numbers that are credible, that can be audited and that bear comparison with numbers from many ONG.  In case you doubt that the picture published in the front page of El Nacional and Tal Cual deeply embarrassed and thus angered the regime, look at the official CICPC reaction.  They refused to receive the letter from Voluntad Popular.  They formed a human barrier with about 300 CICPC employees to block the entrance of the building (who was watching fro our safety while they were all hanging out at the front door?).  And that was not all: about 50 bikers arrived claiming that they ha been sent from the interior ministry to block the activity.  Since the human barrier was in place they just stayed there to watch as spectators, confirming that they are just plain mercenaries as the CNN controversial documents "Los Guardianes de Chavez" could suggest, to the great ridicule of Izarra hyena like laugh, of which he will never recover politically.
Carlos Vecchio surrounded by more journalists and CICPC agents than supporters.  Observe the dangerous yellow folder he carried and that the CICPC refused to receive.

Monday, August 16, 2010

Now Tal Cual will be sued too, but still no news about how chavismo will deal with crime

Chavismo really lacks any sense of ridicule.  They did not like that Tal Cual published that picture today again and thus this afternoon we learn that a law suite will be filed against Tal Cual.  Probably a photocopy of the one filed against El Nacional today.  But that is not all.

Picture, picture on the front page/Who in the land is the fairest journalist?

Tal Cual cover, August 16 2010
I have been very surprised at reading from people that should know better some rather negative comments as to the morgue picture published in El Nacional last Friday.  I am not talking here of course about people like Gabriela Ramirez who is apparently congenitally unable to see anything evil in what the regime she serves does.  I am talking about comments seen elsewhere, or in other blogs who for some reasons were spared this blog entry.  Perhaps people do know me better?

The fact of the matter is that when I saw that gruesome picture I did not hesitate for a second in putting it up in my blog.  For tasteful reasons I did it in a smaller format so people that could stomach it had just to click to enlarge.  But the details were visible enough that people had to see what it was all about.  The reason that I did not hesitate in putting the picture is that instinctively I knew that the regime that had created that gruesome crime wave that we all suffer can only understand the confrontation language, the more so if it is a matter of rubbing the regime face in its messes, as El Nacional, yellow journalism and all, did so well last Saturday.

It is most unfortunate but some times things need to be done as crudely as necessary.  Or is anyone objecting to the publications of the concentration camps in 1945?  True, we cannot compare the two events, yet, but what is out of the debate is that both events are enterely the responsability of the regimes that have presided over them and both regimes must be taken to task.  If chavismo has failed to understand corruption and rotten food images, then it was El Nacional duty to stack up the ante until a reaction comes.

Sunday, August 15, 2010

Vargas Llosa on Wagner: are foreigners better at judging us?

Since it is Sunday for once I can have a totally off topic post.  I just read in El Nacional the Vargas Llosa bi-weekly commentary reprinted from Spain's El Pais which referred to his visit at Bayreuth. Some of you might remember my fondness for opera, but that is not the point.  Some of you might hate Wagner for whatever reason, including political, and neither is this the point.  The point is that this is the best article on Wagner I have ever read.  By far. Spanish, sorry.

Saturday, August 14, 2010

When democracy excesses must be countered: gay marriage again in California?

This week a judge in California overturned the result on Proposition 8 vote, which intended to include in the California constitution a provision to ban gay marriage.  Even though California voted for Obama that year, enough African American and Hispanics split their votes to make proposition pass by 52% if memory serves me well.  I do not want to discuss the excuses that can be made for these people, but the fact of the matter is that already then it seemed that proposition 8 was a discriminatory evil and a dangerous precedent where a majority can discriminate against a minority through a constitutional tool.  Sure enough, a year and a half later, badly defended by the supporters of proposition 8 who have no real case, a federal judge was able to overturn the vote as unconstitutional and declare that unless a superior court rules against him by next Wednesday, gay marriages will start again in California.  Or at least this is more or less how I understand the situation that a busy couple of weeks in Venezuelan news barred me from following closely.

Friday, August 13, 2010

The crude reality of Venezuela's violence: El Nacional under attack

Bello Monte, 12/2009
When you have cynical idiots like Andres Izarra president of Telesur mocking the war-like suffering of the Venezuelan people you cannot be surprised that the local media counter attacks strongly, while it can still do so. The picture below occupies half of the front page of El Nacional and has generated an extraordinary reaction within chavismo.  Not to seek solution to the problem, of course, but to threaten El Nacional with multiple law suits.

I confess that the way my 'lifestyle' is set in San Felipe the first newspaper I read is Tal Cual through the web at lunch time.  At some point during the day I buy either El Universal or El Nacional, according to whichever is left at my newsstand, and I read it at 5 when I get back home to drink my daily teapot.  Needless to say that my teapot had a bitter stormy taste today, besides explaining the delay in publishing on the right that picture of the morgue in Caracas, at Bello Monte, a picture taken by an El Nacional person last December and only published today as a response to the cynicism of a regime that refuses to acknowledge that Caracas has little to envy to the body count of Kabul or Baghdad.

Weil on the reality of Chavez trip to Santa Marta

No comment needed on this cartoon from Weil in today's Tal Cual, about the visit of Chavez to Santos.

Quote of the day

If ignoring the facts about Mr. Chávez is a requirement for sending an ambassador to Caracas, then it would be better not to have one.

Concluding today's Washington Post editorial. Hear! Hear!

From Cardinal Urosa to Fidel Castro all agree: XXI century socialism is a mere rewarmed communism

Among the amount of news hard to follow there was a series of items that I could not write om.  But here is this great cartoon of Edo that gives me the summary I needed.

In short. 

Cardinal Urosa declared that many of the latest laws voted in a hurry by the Nazional Assembly were designed to install Communism in Venezuela.  If one knows what Communism is, it is the Catholic Church.  Chavez did not like it and started insulting Urosa and the Catholic Church abundantly.  Then the Nazional Assembly chimed in and demanded that he came to defend his opinions.  Initially as the Assembly was in a roar he declined stating that security conditions were not adequate.  The Assembly got even more furious but eventually cooled down some and Urosa visited.

The agreement was that the "interpelación" would be broadcast live.  But at the last minute, once Urosa had arrived, the Assembly said that no, no live cameras allowed, that a version would be broadcast later. Trapped, Urosa went ahead anyway.

Thursday, August 12, 2010

CNN is again Chavez enemy, and along the way Izarra establishes the worthlessness of TeleSur

With an addendum of Ocariz versus Montiel

There has been a video made by some Spanish journalists that is circulating.  Its theme was the violence in the streets in Caracas and how in addition chavismo had organized "paramilitary" groups to support Chavez.  I have not been able to watch that video, neither the reprise that CNN "en español" did of it, a reprise that added to it a certain number of interviews, to the makers of that video,to people knowledgeable on Caracas violence and of course chavista officials.

This video has now become a major issue in Venezuela as Chavez stupidly mentioned it when he was in Santa Marta last Tuesday, sending everyone in Colombia at the very least to go and try to watch that video.

Now, before I get into the detail there are a certain numbers of FACTS that need to be addressed:

Monday, August 09, 2010

San Pedro Alejandrino, as much a place of reckoning as ever

Post meeting update

Santos and Chavez are supposed to meet tomorrow at San Pedro Alejandrino, this most hallowed ground in Latin America, where Bolivar spent the last ten days of his life, near Santa Marta, hoping to recover somehow before he could board ship to Jamaica and Europe in his semi imposed self exile.

Why would this two enemies until a few hours ago anyway, meet there?  What should they meet to begin with?

Let's start with the reasons for the meeting .

Paul Krugman writes about Venezuela investment for the future

Well, not really but I got your attention, maybe.

Palmer out, Santos in, BBC out drinking KoolAid

UPDATE!! In what can only be interpreted as further marks of Chavez weakening position we got today one significant development and another one, possibly major.

As expected, Larry Palmer will not be ambassador in Caracas and thus the US Senate will not need to vote on his confirmation next September.  Chavez simply said today that he woudl not receive Palmer "He disqualified himself by breaking all the rules of diplomacy. He messed with all of us. He can't come here."  Of course, Chavez NEVER breaks any of the rules of diplomacy and if he breaks them, well, he is El supremo so tough luck!

Saturday, August 07, 2010

These people have absolutely no shame

As you all know unless you live under a rock, Russia is prey of devastating fires that cannot be controlled because too many originate from the drying out of peat areas which can thus easily create spontaneous combustion.  Guess who has offered help?  Venezuela!  You know, that country known world wide for its extraordinary ability to stop the burning up of the Avila National Park with a single helicopter...

Of course the ones telling us that are the ineffable Cuban press agency Prensa Latina who has the nerve to underline that the brilliant Venezuela ability to put down fires is due to previous cooperation with Russia.

I wonder if Chavez actually ever cared about the Avila burning....

Friday, August 06, 2010

Digging for Bolivar, seen from the New York Times

I still cannot bring myself to write about that offense to all of us when Chavez ordered the seizure of bolivar bones for his political needs and other assorted necrophiliac obsessions he might have.  But Simon Romero does at the NYT.  The poor guy tries to report as objectively as possible but one can tell how grossed out he was not only by the sceance content of the whole disgusting show but by its implications as to the quality of the people that rule over the fate of Venezuela.  It is hard to be a foreign correspondent in Venezuela these days.

Thursday, August 05, 2010

Mr. Palmer might not enjoy Venezuelan palm trees after all

Updated!  I was commenting on my last post that the replies of Ambassador designate to Venezuela, Larry Palmer, to Senator Lugar were rather interesting.  In them, among other pearls, he discussed the lack of morale of the Venezuelan army, the Cuban influence, the inability of Chavez to make real his threat of cutting oil supply to Venezuela and other such.  I read them as mild mannered since I am living at ground zero and thus all what Palmer said is true and in fact much worse than what his diplomatic language implied.  But of course the reality to which I should have been more sensible is that no ambassador can ever express itself on internal matters of the country he is sent to, the more so that he has not set foot in that country yet.

Tuesday, August 03, 2010

Foreign Policy wants you to take Chavez seriously

For the kick of it read this entry on Foreign Policy as to why it is time to see Chavez more than a clown, a dangerous clown.  Short and to the point. (Hat tip J.R.)

And while you are at it read the latest Hitchens where you will learn interesting tidbits as to Chavez doubting the moon landing and the existence of Osama.  Somethings just cannot be invented....

PS: and you can also read the confirmation hearings questions by Senator Lugar to ambassador designated Palmer. (hat tip P.M.).  At least we know that if Palmer is confirmed he will now what he is getting himself to.

Chavez and Uribe in French

So I went ahead and wrote on the fast in French a summary of the recent Colombia Venezuela spat, at the leftist central of Agoravox.  It is important to note that even if in a few hours I received more than 100 comments finding different ways to insult me, the editors know better than caving in to this hysterical French far left and keep publishing "controversial" articles.

Be nice, if you read French visit, register, vote for the article and even leave a comment in Spanish or English.  You will have the pleasure to read briefly thereafter a reply from my critics that I am bringing in my empire paid chorus, or something of the sort :)

Sunday, August 01, 2010

Chavez secretly sends troops to the Colombian border

Chavez said: (my emphasis)
"Hemos desplegado unidades para defender nuestra soberanía en caso de una agresión. Unidades de defensa aérea, unidades aéreas, unidades de infantería, de operaciones especiales; en silencio porque no queremos agredir a nadie ni queremos causar alarma en las poblaciones"
"We have deployed units to defend our sovereignty in case of aggression.  Units of aerial defense, aerial units [?], infantry units, of special operations; silently because we do not want to attack anyone nor cause alarm in the population"
aarghhh, cough, cough, hahahahhahahahah....


[a relative found the author of this blog convulsing on the floor in what seemed an extraordinary attack of laughter.  The relative took the liberty to post this anyway hoping readers will be kind enough to understand]

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