Wednesday, January 05, 2011

No cheap symbolism will be left unturned

So today it is the swearing in of the new assembly and chavismo is already displaying its sectarian nature, and I will update this post as needed.

The first step was to take over the National Pantheon just for the use of "bolivarian" representatives who went to swear that Bolivar, Socialism, the Revolution and themselves as a single one.  Obviouly the absence of the opposition representatives there must imply to the simple minded that they spit on Bolivar's grave.....

Globovision was of course banned from any coverage of the National Assembly installation.

Two representatives are banned from sitting today through judicial manipulation.  Maybe, but they are also refusing their substitutes to be sworn in!!!!  So we can already suspect foul play ahead since at least for today the National assembly will give two "extra votes" to chavismo!!!!!

Updated as needed.


According to the Washington Post the State department seems to be caving in to Chavez.  Read today's editorial, very appropriate to read as democracy is trampled at the view of all.  The US do not seem to care much and just want to make sure that oil goes up North and that its produced food goes down South.  Who cares about Human rights in Venezuela!!!

Am I wrong Hillary?  Please, I'd love to stand corrected!


So the installation proceded.  nothing worth reproting that was not unexpected.  However what was unexpected even for me was the speech of the new speaker, followed a few minutes later by the press declarations of the two vicepresidents.

As far as extreme militant speech and a collection of old cliches, some quite undigested, and the sheer abysmal ignorance of the Speaker and Eekout, this will remain unrivaled for quite a while, even within chavismo.

I mean, you need to worry when the fate of the country is in the hands of the like as Soto and Eekout, even if generously you woudl be willing to assume that they believe only, say, 20% of the garbage they said (recited in the case of Soto who read from notes a speech that was painfully obvious not of his making).


by the way, the assembly started by a constitutional violation finding a way to make sure that the two representatives "on trial" could not be seated.  No details worth giving here, read my note below.  We got what we asked for when we give chavismo a low easy slow ball.


Note on the banned representatives.  I am on record somewhere in saying that it was a mistake for the opposition to nominate so many candidates just to get them out of jail.  That might has been a stimulus for opposition voters but I doubt it (well, maybe in Caracas, Valencia and Maracaibo at most because in San Felipe nobody really gives a you know what).

Already at nomination time the regime played with that and caused some problems inside the opposition when some of the names were barred then.  Still, the MUD of the opposition persisted in naming several who were under trial instead of focusing on a single one as a powerful symbol.  As a consequence the regime has managed to all but disbar two of them with mock trials and all sorts of legal violations risking the MUD to lose its already precious 2/5 block!!!!

So I can tell you "I told you so!".  I hate it when the MUD thinks that all of Venezuela responds to the same stimulus as Caracas does pavloviany.  Apologies for that horrendous new word......


  1. The latest chapter in the U.S. State Dept. capitulation to Chavez's manipulation of Hillary is in this article, in which Chavez takes the opportunity to rub Hillary's nose in it.

    Credit to Boat People for the link. He posted it in a previous thread, but it needed to posted again in this thread for continuity in the original post.

  2. I'm thinking it may be premature to paint State as caving in, despite Hugo's silly presumptions. First, the spokesman only says that Palmer's nomination expired with the end of the Congress, and not that it won't be submitted again to the new. Second, even if they do nominate a different ambassador, we'll have to wait until Senate testimony to know if doing so was caving in or not. S/he could go to the Senate and deliver exactly the same message that Palmer did.

    That might be an even stronger message than renominating Palmer, because it would emphasize that what Palmer said is policy, not one man's opinion. At the same time, it would negate Hugo's argument about "this man" and put the onus back on him about normalizing relations. I'm not making guarantees, or even predictions, but only time will tell on this one.

    Re: the Reuters article - no wonder Hilary was smiling. Hugo knows who wears the pants in her family. (ba dum bum)

  3. AIO,

    Wow! That is a wildly optimistic way to look at it. I am sorry I can't see my way to buying in to it.

    And, I disagree about it "being a stronger message". Even if they did it, it would look wishy-washy, not strong.

  4. Wildly optimistic, Roy? Check here and search for "not looking" in the text. That will get you to the right place.

    As for wishy-washy, I suppose nominating someone new right now could look that way. I was imagining, though didn't say it, them leaving this be for maybe 6 months before a new nomination. Find another job for Palmer. (Doesn't make sense to leave him in limbo forever - I'm pretty sure I read that they were considering a new post for Duddy, before he eventually got invited back.) It would be like turning the page (and suggesting that State processes do not revolve around Venezuela), which would force Chavez into showing that he hasn't done the same.

    By the way, when Crowley says things like "we decry the increasingly autocratic trends in Venezuela," it makes pretty clear that switching from Palmer wouldn't be a step back in policy.

  5. AIO,

    Here is how it is playing world-wide:

    "Venezuela claims victory in diplomatic row with U.S."

    If you are part of the diplomatic community, you might parse it the way describe, but in the real world, people don't see that level of nuance. They see a U.S. simply caving in to Chavez's bullying. And that is a very bad message for any superpower to send to the world, that they can be bullied.

  6. Well, perceptions don't always match reality. No news there. But I do believe that, by either re-nominating Palmer, or by nominating someone else who says the same thing during testimony, the message will eventually be one of not caving.

    Of course, everyone will have long forgotten this spat by then, so maybe it won't have much value.


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