Thursday, January 10, 2013

Post coup silver linings

I do not want you to go to bed disheartened, so I am typing fast some positive thoughts I got while walking the dog.

One thing I was afraid with Chavez death while in office, in what is apparently a personal tragedy, was the creation of the lacking myth, a myth enough to allow chavismo to survive him like a curse over Venezuelan politics  like peronismo has been for Argentina. The way I see it now, the intensity of infighting inside chaivsmo while Chavez is still not officially dead raises some hope in me that chavismo may self destroy before it takes root.  All the other myths seem to have failed Chavez, be it the February 1992 failed coup or even April 13 which he killed through over use. But a "made for" heroic death could have done the trick, á la Che. Fortunately the poor quality of his followers may spare us the creating of a hard core peronismo like movement in Venezuela.

The other thing is that chavismo has decided to postpone elections. Now that Maduro is the one assuming office as soon as Chavez dies he may want to call for elections as safer for him, Cabello now on the sidelines. But we can count on Cabello to postpone that for a while, unless the Cubans pull the plug. After all, they are back in the driving seat, as of today, holding the plug on Chavez.

The opposition may thus be given a unique trump card: the later the elections, the better its chances.  I reckon that each month that goes by chavismo loses 0,5% from its October score (maybe more depending on how repulsed chavismo is with recent events). Thus with November, December and now January and February for sure (I doubt they will announce Chavez death until late January so elections are now the last Sunday of February at the earliest), we have 4 X 0,5= 2% less for chavismo, 53%.  As early as May the opposition could be in a true challenging position, the more so if chavismo devaluates before the election.  Though of course, after today there is very serious doubts about elections and their fairness.....

And even if Chavez managed to come back from the Cuban grave.  The divisions inside chavismo are now so big that he will never be able to reassert his authority the way he did.

Venezuela es otra.


  1. My comment in Facebook:

    "Hay que ver que tenemos un país sin instituciones.

    La oposición no gritaba muy duro porque quieren más tiempo para tener la opción de ganar la elección. Los chavistas no gritaban muy duro porque no querían tener a Diosdado Presidente. Diosdado no gritaba muy duro, porque quiere que Maduro se queme antes. La gente no gritaba para nada, porque no le interesan los detalles constitucionales. Los mercados no gritaban muy duro porque a nadie le interesa tener problemas en Venezuela.

    En conclusión, Luisa Estela arregló el problema y dejó a todos contentos...

    La Constitución?

    Muy bien, gracias."

    1. Where in Facebook?

    2. I am not so sure that all are happy...... Luisa satisfied Maduro and certainly a portion of the opposition, probably Capriles who scored one yesterday and blew it today.

  2. Anonymous6:12 AM

    Muy sagaz, Bruni!

  3. The other thing is that chavismo has decided to postpone elections. Now that Maduro is the one assuming office as soon as Chavez dies he may want to call for elections as safer for him, Cabello now on the sidelines. i like this blog

  4. Charly1:33 PM

    Daniel, Venezuela est un pays à la dérive, résultat du manque de maturité des politiciens quelque soit leur enseigne.

    1. This comment has been removed by the author.

    2. d'accord, Charly.

  5. Dr. Faustus5:32 PM

    "After all, they ( the Cubans) are back in the driving seat, as of today, holding the plug on Chavez."

    It's 3:00 AM in a cordoned~off hospital room at CIMEQ. It's been difficult for our patient to learn how to sleep with only one eye closed. But, shuffling down the hallway in the distance is a figure which seems familiar to our patient. Tall, grey, bearded, and stooped. He silently makes his way into the room. Now standing before him and blocking out the blinking lights from the whiring machines, he tries to understand the words his guest is mumbling over the bed. Confusion. Who? What? Then a hand reaches over to the electrical chord and he hears a familiar refrain, 'Socialismo o Muerte!'

  6. Anonymous6:05 PM

    Daniel: You got quoted in Commentary Magazine's blog.

  7. People seem to obsess over the question of Diosdado vs Maduro. Diosdado has learned from Chavez to be a hate-monger trampler of minority rights, as shown by his behavior (abusive actions, insults etc. against minorities, in public and applauded without the least shame, unlike Maduro) for many months now and especially of late.

    Now that I think back, Diosdado has always had an inclination for abusive behavior while in power and insulting hate-speech against minorities. What he has learned by observing Chavez is the political gains associated with this type of behavior in Venezuela. Yes, he is far far worse than Maduro.

    So Diosdado hates Cubans? Think again: Cuba can easily blackmail him into paying billions and billions for silence and stability. Too much corruption by Diosdado or by his friends/family. Remember, Cuba has had unlimited access to all government databases, transport, export and communication facilities. And he will react to Cuban blackmail by trampling minorities even more out of frustration. So, even if Maduro is a weakling and easy to manipulate by the Castros, Diosdado is far far worse.

    The TSJ? It is playing with fire because it re-intepreted the meaning of presidential term in light of a new construct, foreign to the constitution: "continuity". I can easily imagine a new definition of presidential term under "continuity" that gets rid of the need for elections in case Chavez dies before 2017. See: under "continuity" the oath-taking date 1/10/2013 no longer demarcates anything, so if Chavez dies, say, next month, not having been sworn-in, the TSJ can say he died during the second half of the 2008-2012 "continuing" term so VP Maduro, unelected and all, can stay on as President, without calling for elections, for the rest of the new "continuing" 2008-2017 term. Why not? Once the demarcation date is abolished, anything is possible. The TSJ is risking this because its goal is getting rid of elections altogether in the event of Chavez' death/permanent absence.

    And another goal of getting rid of the 1/10/2013 demarcation date is: the new swearing-in date (when it occurs, should Chavez return fit to govern) will define the commencement of the 2012-2017 presidential term. So if the swearing-in date is rolled back to 2014, the new presidential term will end in 2018. See?


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