Friday, March 22, 2013

Transfiguration in Naguanagua

I am watching for the first time a full speech of Capriles campaign-bis, tonight in Naguanagua. Well, it is a transformed man. No more mister nice guy against Chavez. Now it is a truth a minute. He holds no punch against Maduro. From accusing him of being a machista to telling folks he is lazy and does not wake up before 9 AM. In a way he manages to come closer to be a Chavez heir than Maduro himself. At least Capriles can claim to have been everywhere in the country, like Chavez did, and waking up early, like Chavez did (even though it was more likely due to insomnia than actual desire...).

But Capriles goes much further. After all, Maduro has proven to be such an easy target. I am impressed how he mixes criticism of the regime with concrete proposals, though of a demagogic on occasion. But the thing is that Capriles speaks from the heart. His fight is for Venezuela, to save our country, to make it reborn. He offers himself in sacrifice. It is simply fantastic to see a transformation. Too bad he did not try some of that fire last year against Chavez.

This is EXACTLY the campaign I wanted him to do, the only one worth doing because even if he loses he sets a standard and put the country in front of its responsibility if it votes for Maduro in spite of his clear deficiencies and the disaster of 14 Chavez rule unraveling fast. By speaking loud and clear it is the only chance that a future government may have the means to make the changes that we need.

Capriles meeting was huge, HUGE, for something so early in the campaign for a side so deprived of means. Never mind the enthusiasm, that you cannot fake.  Globovision switched directly to Maduro in El Tigre, with a dull campaign  a lack of enthusiasm, and of course, close captions so we cannot say how big truly the crowds are. The argument? Chavez and the opposition will privatize PDVSA....

Amazingly Capriles is turning the election between conservatives and liberals except that the conservative are Maduro and the forward looking liberals are Capriles.


  1. Funny you posted this. I was just coming over to tell you that I just saw a group in FB called "Chavistas por Capriles", and their opening line is "Este grupo ha sido creado para todos aquellos que apoyaron a Chavez y ahora apoyan a Capriles como su sucesor."
    Interesting to say the least.

  2. I also wished he would have shown this side a bit before. To me, in this campaign, he feels more honest, like I can really buy what he is selling much more than before although I'm just feeling so much deja vu sometimes. I don't want to get my hopes up, but also don't want to think of the alternative.

  3. Anonymous4:37 AM

    Capriles' approach seems brilliant in all the aspects you mention. It appears he is taking several pages from Chavez' playbook and playing the pseudo-neo-Chavez role (if such a string of words are permissible) ...without the future potential downside, I should add. If what you commented in the past about Maduro is true, he has neither the verbal nor emotional skills to "play" being a Chavez to the masses.

    Capriles probably could not have played the role and approach he is now assuming when facing off previously against Hugo. Chavez was too quick verbally and strategically. With Chavez out of the picture, perhaps Capriles can out-box Chavez' shadow and a hollow Maduro. However, he will need enough public visibility to do it.

    PS. I hope my rare participation in your Blog is welcome, but I have been reading it loyally for several years. It is better than a Mexican telenovela! But much more frustrating.

    1. Agree with you, castellagne, regarding the timing of Capriles' assertiveness. To everything there is a season. The way I see it ... Capriles, the oppo winner, knew that if he tipped the boat into deeper waters, pre 7O, he risked losing the ni-ni's, as well as those taking their first steps away from their abusive 'husband', Hugo Chávez. With Hugo still in the picture, the Venezuelan electorate was still very polarized. It was best for Capriles to play the inclusiveness and peace card. I think he did so brilliantly, even though there were times that I wanted to see much more meat on the bone. That time is now. With the wily Chávez gone and buffoon Maduro in his place, the Cuban 'injerencia' issue looms much larger than it did last year. Capriles knows he has 6.5 million voters in his pocket. He knows that people, even die-hard chavistas are angry at the stalling and the lies from the government, and now the paquetazo. Capriles can afford to tap into this anger and express it to a welcoming crowd. He has nothing to lose.

      P.S. Bravo and thanks, Daniel, for this post - a flicker of hope.

  4. From the recent comments, both on this blog and in other parts as well, I am afraid that people are hopeful that there is a possibility of a Maduro defeat. I think that it is very important to stress that the important think is to put up a good show, to defend as many votes as possible given the extremely adverse circumstances of this election. The opposition has to be seen as very strong! But people must be clear that there is no way that the government will accept a defeat. And, by the way, let them try to solve the economic situation generated through mismanagement by themselves. And let the people get really disillusioned with them.

    1. Nothing wrong with being hopeful. Nothing at all. In fact, hope is one of the vital elements for carrying the oppo forward. Most thinking voters know, deep down, that the Cuban machinery behind Maduro is a behemoth that may not so easily be defeated. While some foreigners paint voters as naÏve, arrogant, or what have you, Venezuelans are not stupid. Please allow us a much-needed moment of hope.

  5. Indeed, even if he loses Capriles sets the stage for an opposition government next time around. Maduro cannot retain the Chavez mantle for more than 6 months and things will fall apart quickly. Who knows maybe if chavistas stay at home and Capriles wins by a nose.

  6. margareth2:08 PM

    This time I think Capriles will win. Wonderful how he chases, nails Maduro everytime. Every night I look at Globovision en vivo.... its wonderful to listen to him!!!Like you say "Mister Nice Guy" I like this one ..."Nosotros no somos la oposición pero la solución".

  7. Anonymous3:23 PM

    The problem is the lack of access to the media. It doesn't matter how good a speach is if nobody hears it. Who other than globovision with their limited broadcast will broadcast the message, and for how long will they after the sale? The playing field is not even, and in the end the corrupted and very questionable CNE will decide the fate of the nation.

    Capriles can't afford to play nice this time...gloves off. Expose this governments flaws, present a positive plan forward, and win over support from the military and the masses will be the only way to win the election and hold on to it the day after. You can't count on the democratic process to be followed or observers to protect the vote. Historically that has not been enough.

    Capriles also needs to increase his security precautions this time as the psuv will feel more threatened, vulnerable and desperate. You are dealing with criminals and thugs, and you can expect them to act like it.


  8. P.S. I like your title, Daniel. It's got oomph.

    1. ain't that so?

      you do not know how difficult it is to write a title!!! if you want to be picked up in search engines you need to include at least one of the following words: chavez, venezuela, election, dictatorship, devaluation, etc, etc... after more than 3000 posts i have run out of recycling ideas....

      so when a post is written for the faithful alone because it cannot be explained to recent arrivals it is nice to soltarse el moño and put some oomph.

    2. Ah, but I do know how difficult it is to write a title, probably more so now than before the advent of digital search engines. I once heard that in (large) media rooms, one person is in charge of solely creating titles for the articles written, the titles being a vital component to whetting the appetite of readers (and thereby selling more papers/ads/etc.)

      I remember, too, working with an author of an article, submitted to a nationwide magazine that changed the author's title to one much more daring. The magazine also added a more provocative photo to accompany the title and the more photo-journalistic shots I submitted and had published.

      Finally, I also heard, back in the early 2000s, when I ramped up the learning curve on web-related issues (I can no longer keep up :-()that if you add "sex" just to your keywords, your title will shoot up in the search engines. I never tried that with my own websites.

      All this to say, once again, I LIKE your title. Siga soltando ese moño, mijo.

  9. Milonga6:13 PM

    I saw that too yesterday via Globovision, and noticed that Capriles calls him Nicolás and so did Chávez. Globovision showed some Chavez's clips calling him Nicolás and even "tirándole la oreja" on some kind of wrongdoing. Thought that was hilarious and brilliant. But I still do not trust the voting machines. I still think Capriles won the last time. These people as Maduro keeps saying will go out to the streets and defend their... pockets full of money. Is it true Maduro expelled Chavez´s family and gave them 15 days to leave the presidential house to him? The crowds Capriles is gathering are quite fantastic. So were they the last time!

  10. Capriles s showing guts and real love for the country. Too bad Corruption, cheating at the elections, bribes, refrigerators, and above all a miserable lack of education will result with some chump named Maduro as president.. agreed, Capriles should really pound on that clown, even after he loses. Too many leeches thirsty for power and money won't let go of el coroto..

  11. Anonymous8:49 PM

    The votes for Capriles are there but as long as the voting process is not protected and handled by independent representatives the chavistas will stay in power squeezing the last drop out of the venezuelaens!


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