Monday, April 06, 2015

Thundering Twittering Terror

So the OAS summit is about to start.  A lot of clouds are announced, then again nothing may happen. And then again the unexpected may take place. Should we care? I do not need to enter much into that as there is a perfectly good, perfectly complete, perfectly short piece that covers all that you need to know on the Panama gathering, In case you think it is relevant for the future.

Instead let's talk about Maduro's understanding of the situation. Inasmuch as we can even dare making an educated guess about the primary feeling that has taken possession of his psyche. Because I assume that Maduro at least had at some point the smarts of a courtier. That does not mean that he is intelligent, he is not. But at least he had the necessary wiles and instincts to rise inside the Cuban imperial court and the Chavez proconsul court to reach the title of viceroy of Venezuela, no small feat.

But things have gone downhill since and Maduro had to go on survival mode, hence his primal instincts have taken precedence. Cruelty, vulgarity, ignorance, arrogance are now the only things he is able to display.

The problem for Maduro is that two years have gone by and he has nothing to show for and elections are coming that he is certain to lose (he will steal them, but that is another story). The only thing left to do is to create tools of pressure on the people to scare them into toeing the line. And Obama has served the perfect excuse with his executive order. Mind you, Obama was just an excuse, I am sure that Maduro and his team had other options prepared, but Obama was a convenient bonus. The jailing and torture of Lopez were already part of a plan set long ago, in case you are willing to blame Obama for every evil.

This is how you need to understand the drive to collect the "10 million" signatures that are to be delivered to Obama so he feels compelled to repeal his executive order.  The world knows by now that those signatures come from non Venezuelans, that school children and public workers were forced to sign, that people have already been fired for not signing, or bribed with a chicken into signing, and what not.  Those signatures are D.O.A for Obama and the civilized world.

So why?

Because it is an internal demonstration of strength. It is set to demonstrate to "el pueblo" that the regime is a totalitarian state, able to scare people into signing, creating in them the idea that their vote is not going to be safe, unknown. Showing that data can be manipulated at ease like they do with Twitter though all sorts of robots tweeting happily any hashtag. To show that the agenda is set by Maduro, not by anyone else. That who is guilty and corrupt and narc is decided by Maduro, not by honest observers. That truth has nothing to do with power. That resistance is futile.

What we have seen in recent weeks is one of the most odious, naked exercise of fascist power. Fascist but XXI century style, bloodless so far, shrouded in a mist that the civilized world does not dare to pierce, that sickly fascinates some of that so called civilized world. XXI century fascism fascinates. Truly.

It is too early to see whether it worked. But it announces harsh days ahead.


  1. Anonymous10:03 PM

    Obama is just not dumb enough to walk into a trap like that unprepared. Maduro has really painted himself into a corner with this one. Either he will be too afraid to come out and present his folly and look like a total loser even to his fellow crooks, or he will confront Obama and suffer whatever public humiliation the President of the United States gives him and look like a total loser.

    Either way he looks like a total loser

    1. The 10 million signatures will be duly presented to Correa and other allies at a separate ceremony. This will be highlighted on venezuelan and cuban TV, and by pro regime media. It's circus.

      The proper Obama reaction would be to confirm that Maduro is indeed considered a threat to the USA, and that the list will be expanded if human rights violations and/or hostile acts against USA interests are carried out by the Maduro regime.

      The key for the USA is to demonstrate an utter lack of interest in having good relations with human rights abusers. Relations, yes. Diplomatic relations, of course. Good relations, on the other hand, aren't necessary. Latin Americans are going to have to learn a lesson, they support dictatorship and abuses, therefore they do t really merit US friendship. What for? They got nothing to offer.

    2. Anonymous1:10 PM

      Regardless of what actually happens with respect to the feeble intent at propaganda they will spin this for the folks at home to make it look like Marduro (choose one or two) insulted, bested, humiliated, outfoxed, exposed, established dominance etc etc, Maduro's pathetic spin doctors will try and make this look like he beat up Obama but the reality will just be more fodder for the rest of the world to laugh at the pathetic situation in Venezuela. I say laugh because that is all you can do when it is so sad and hopeless.

  2. I fear you overestimate Obama and his advisers. We'll know in a few days.

    1. Anonymous7:56 AM

      Considering how well Obama has handled the constant racism tainted attacks of Republicans, I think he can stay cool and keep his sights on the long game.

    2. Romero11:37 AM

      Anonymous ... you forgot to put at the end of your post.

  3. "So why?

    Because it is an internal demonstration of strength. "

    Indeed. The infamous list serves several purposes:

    - To divert attention from the real, internal crisis escasez, inflation, insecurity, etc.
    - Scare tactics and witch hunt, that can be used for further repression.
    - To force people to vote, since their names and info is being collected. Then steal the elections, for decades to come.

    - To justify the upcoming Major Scan with Smartmatic, where they will have to cheat en masse, to turn 80% disapproval into 55% approval. That's a lot of cheating, and no one will believe the numbers. But they will say: " we already had over 10 million signatures of our people supporting Chavismo, see??"

    And of course, whoever was on that list and doesn't vote pro-Masburro will be persecuted. No mas arepa pa ti.

  4. Sledge you are exactly right. This has absolutely nothing to do with Obama it is just a domestic demonstration of support for the corrupt media to use and for the bought off leaders of Latin America to use for giving their support. If I was the USA I would say we will name 10 Venezuelans in positions of corruption against human rights every month until they stop. Pointing out that people in authoritive function like judges, Military leadership etc are lead candidates.

    1. Yeah, but the problem with the USA is the same political crap as with every other country.. they play a politically-correct game because they want/need the freaking Corruptzuelan oil, plus many other "favors".

      So no, they won't call it as it is, Vzla and Cuba as Dictatorships, and all that. They will shake hands,,, blah, blah, blah,, as usual.

      You might hear vague rumors on the back ground such as :

    2. Sledge, the U.S. doesn't need Venezuela's oil. As you probably know most of it is in the faja, it's a terrible quality 8 degrees API, with sulfur and metals. It's also very acid. This crude is being displaced by canadian crude, and eventually global warming dictates a lot of it must be produced using low co2 emissions technology. In five years the usa will probably discontinue buying venezuelan crude.

    3. In 5 years, but so far so good, huh? USA's interests encompass the rest of Latin America's Chavismo hala-bolas, they can't rock the boat either, it's all a putrid political game, as always.

  5. Anonymous7:22 PM

    Not to mention, if the US really did want Venezuelan tar as much as Chavismo keeps saying, they would not be very nice to a government that is so unfriendly to non Chinese investment. But since too much oil seems to be a problem currently, and internationals are pulling out left and right, I think Venezuela will soon be forgotten.

  6. One must remember that what we see in the media is pure politics and rarely what is truly happening. If you want to know if two gov'ts truly dislike each other just look at trade. If they are trading on large scale then the hate is usually lip service solely for political appearance. Is like when the USA was listing Egypt as part of the axis of evil a few years back yet Egypt was buying all its grain from USA when Australian grain was cheaper. Was all lip service while truly behind the scenes they were friends.

  7. Anonymous10:51 AM

    Tom Shannon is in Caracas today. Tom has been the architect of U.S. policy towards Venezuela since 2006. Tom is delivering a message to the Bolivarians on behalf of the president of the United States. President Obama wants to make sure his message is being delivered to the right people before the summit. This is not about making nice.

    1. Obama has a pretty murky foreign policy strategy (if he has one). I'm not sure where he is going, I do know I thought Bush's was a disaster. What concerns me is the image Obama projects, which is really weakened by Republican senators. I don't particularly like some of Obama's policies, but the GOP is treasonous and as far as I can see they have gone way beyond what's readonable. In conclusion what I see is a weakened USA president with a wimpy image trying to be popular with people who are basically irrelevant in US politics. Latin America brings absolutely nothing to the USA in any important realm. And their spineless attitude towards dictatorships and human rights abusers makes them a swamp. If I were US president I wouldn't even bother to show up. I would send Biden and let him make a couple of his stupid comments, and that's about it.

    2. R Osores2:40 PM

      C'mon Fernando, "murky foreign policy", "you are not sure where it is going" ??
      It is very clear if you want to look: anything that is bad for the US, is his foreign policy.
      Just one example: when he stood in the Rose Garden with the terrorist looking parents of the deserter US soldier and watched with adoring eyes as they praised Allah and then called this deserter one who served "with honor and distinction". That, my friend, is his foreign policy, in which the traitor to the US military is the one serving with honor and distinction.
      That was a great "deal" for america, yeah right great negotiating skills Obama! And now you trust that whatever piece of paper they "negotiate" with Iran is another great deal for america? And you think the Republican Senators are "traitors" because they want to stop the "deal"?

      Don't forget my friend that Obama's own mother when they moved to Indonesia and was told of a group of ex-patriot americans said "they are not my people". It's in his book.

      Fernando I am sure you voted for this p.o.s, TWICE and are proud of it.

    3. Anonymous6:46 AM

      "anything that is bad for the US, is his foreign policy."

      Yeah, I'm sure you're right...idiot.

    4. r osores8:06 AM

      Your arguments and debating skills are so far superior to mine that I concede: I am an idiot.
      Now go cash your welfare check.

    5. Hawkeye62811:57 AM

      Agree with you totally R Osores. Liberal knee-jerk Obama supporters can't handle the truth.

    6. I suppose that when he ordered Osama taken down it was a moment of weakness...

      I love those people with manichean views of life and politics. .


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