Something funny happened with my last post in Spanish: it got more hits than an English written post and more G+ than usual (note: I have no idea what G+ truly is good for, it just appears with the posts). Yet few comments, as it happens with my Spanish written posts. Still, since a reader asked me to translate it, I am forced to reply that no, it cannot be translated because it has portions that are really designed to humor a Venezuelan audience (like the Flores family placement system), not to mention that humor, even if diffident, is not easy to translate. But I can post a rewrite, an English summary of sorts.
The point of that post was that the Giordani letter and its consequences highlighted that chavismo was possibly considering an exit out of a situation that they cannot control. Thus "the exit / la salida" to copy ironically the failed program of Lopez and Machado. Failed for the time being, but that is another story.
Why would chavismo consider an exit? Several reasons: they cannot control the economic crisis; they know their coalition of interests is unraveling; they know that too many of them will go to jail for their crimes (and there may be a need to select a few scapegoats); many of them would like to enjoy their loot, and would pay a reasonable price to be allowed to do so; and more. Clearly, this is impossible to tie it all up neatly and some changes will have to occur.
The booting of Giordani and the accusation of "izquierda transnochada", (very outdated lefties) is the clearest evidence that some inside the regime want things to change for the better but only on the economic level. That does not mean at all that they want to change a system that gives the regime control on everything, just that materially things should get better so that people are less angry at them and a soft landing would become possible.
You need to remember that Maduro would have never booted Giordani without the agreement of his Cuban mentors, even if the army wanted it. Not that Giordani was per se of any importance, but he was a symbol of the cynical left, the one that wants everyone to be poor for a long time so they forget about the comforts of life and become true revolutionaries. Many books exist on these colossal failures but hope springs eternal.
Unfortunately the world has shifted for the Castro vampires and the corrupt hanger-on and drug traffickers in Venezuela. It is not only a matter that Chavez is not here anymore to control things (which I personally doubt he could do this time around) but Fidel is bound to croak any time soon; and Raul is not far behind. Besides, today it is quite possible that Venezuela is unable to send Castro's way all what it used to send, so there is a need to speed up political processes. And this the more so that Maduro clearly has not been able to gain legitimacy after the electoral fraud of 2013 and is ruling on borrowed time.
Finally, there is Rafael Poleo, Zeta's editor, that has been mentioning over and over that the Castro's are going to surrender a ruined Venezuela, with all of its oil reserves, to the global economy in exchange of Cuba being left alone with the Castros and associates enjoying in peace their loot. The recent ISIS debacle in Iraq and Putin mercurial behavior with Russian gas and oil abound in that direction. In the grand order of things, the US will become self reliant in energy (with the back up of Canada and Mexico as needed), the Middle East will be left to China an India in case they can deal better with the restless natives, assuming China does not fall into its own long overdue political crisis. Japan, I suppose, will have to satisfy itself with Indonesia and Burma and scraps here and there. And thus Venezuela would be for Europe. If Brasil shakes out Dilma next October, in about 5 years we could start seeing a new tri-polar world emerging around the Atlantic and an ally in Japan to secure the Pacific. The rest of the world can do as it pleases, as long as it keeps the noise down.
In short, if through different approaches Poleo and people like yours truly are right, the center of the world would not be anymore America but The Americas. And all made possible by Venezuela accepting by force what should have been always its logical position. That it failed to do so when it had the upper hand in the 80ies will make it more painful to do it now on other people terms, starting by the Havana criminals.
Fortunately for chavismo the constitution, for what that rag is worth today, favors them more than it favors the opposition, schedule wise. So there follows a possible "salida" for chavismo.
The current economic crisis will be blamed not only on the opposition (which is not flying well) but will also be put on the izquierda transnochada. And Maduro. This is the price he is going to have to pay if he wants to go peacefully into a retirement he may be able to enjoy. After all, he is notoriously a lazy bum. How will the transition operate?
By December 2015 a new National Assembly is to be elected. All forecasts now preview that even with a half million vote margin, or more, the opposition will not be able to get a majority. Courtesy of deep gerrymandering chavismo retains a 2-3 seats majority even if they lose by more than half a million votes. This, by the way, is yet another criminal failure of Capriles and allies when they fail to acknowledge that fact, creating false hopes in the opposition electorate. As a consequence if indeed in 2015 the regime preserves even a squeaky 1 vote majority it would be enough to send the opposition into yet another funk that will last enough for the regime to apply the crucial part of its plan.
This crucial part implies that sometime in 2016, with a little help from the High Court (TSJ) which has been violating the constitution over and over again since Chavez got sick, Maduro will name a vice president that will become his successor upon his resignation. According to the constitution if the president ceases office, after 4 years in office of his 6 years term, the vice president HE appointed, becomes the NON ELECTED president for up to 2 years. NOTE: NON ELECTED because the veep does not even require a congressional vote, in case some lefty readers wants to make a parallel with Gerald Ford.
Right now the candidates to become vice president in October 2016 at the latest are Ramirez, Cabello and maybe Rodriguez Torres (Chavez was elected for 6 years in October 2012 and the TSJ can at the very least use that argument and the "continuidad admistrativa" new theory). I am already willing to bet beavily that Ramirez will be booted at some point before the end of 2015 and that the veep to be named in 2016 is going to be a military.
Once the new UNELECTED veep is sworn in to rule for at the very least 2 years, he will blame everything on Maduro while at the same time start benefiting from the positive results of the neo liberal measures Maduro took through 2014 and 2015. There is no reason for that military not to be reelected in 2018 as long as he does not make too many mistakes, as long as the economy does better than what it is doing today which is not that difficult, the more so if ISIS keeps blowing up stuff. The end result is that at inauguration 2019, the old chavista generation has been removed, and the country is solidly in the hands of an elected military regime. Of course, all the historical chavistas that accepted to play that game and leave power will in turn be allowed to enjoy their loot as the populace by 2019 will have forgotten all the current corruption that is bringing upon us the current misery.
This is the theory anyway and so many things can go wrong, badly wrong, until then that we can only take this as an exercise in thought. Still, it shows you two things: that chavismo is cynical enough that such theories can take place, allowed by a populace that after 15 years of brain washing and willful codependency cannot conceive of anything else but a primitive military conservatism.
We now have wait to see who is going to be the Napoleon that will terminate the revolution in 2016 at the latest.