Monday, August 03, 2015

Cilia Floreșcu

Readers that think this post is a cheap take on infamous Elena Ceaușescu would be right, but in part only. Far from me the idea of writing a short bio of Cilia Flores, a.k.a. "primera combatiente", or making a comparison between the two women or even the situation of the two countries. But certain strange coincidences between Romania circa 1989 and Venezuela circa 2015 cannot be missed.

Let's dispatch first the bio of Cilia Flores, belated wife of Nicolas Maduro (Nicolae? Really?). She is a hack lawyer who managed to be in Chavez team after his failed 1992 bloody coup. From then on honors would fall on her. She is reputedly the one that brought Nicolas to Chavez attention. When this one inherited the throne, he finally married her (I have kept an eye on the power couple rise on this blog since 2008 at least). What has been noteworthy about Cilia Flores is her habit to place her relatives in all sorts of bureaucratic positions, almost two dozen we know of, not counting collateral appointments we do not know they are linked tot he clan. Nepotism is thy middle name.

Let's dispatch what could be directly compared to Elena. Not much really. While Elena went as far as inventing for herself PhD, Cilia is quite happy being the real power behind Nicolae Nicolas, while placing around her relatives, friends, janitors... Though she is not exempt of the personality cult temptation, carving for herself an image and getting a TV show of her own.

The real point of this post, the real comparison I want to make, is between the immobility we could see in Romania before the Ceausescus downfall and the one we see today in Venezuela, auguring either a downfall or a dramatic change. And the apparent blindness of the respective leaderships.

In 1989 Romania was finally paying off its foreign debt at great suffering for the population. The deprivations included an allowance of meager light bulbs to save energy, and you's better not have many turned on. TV was a single channel a very few hours a day. And of course food shortages and medicine scarcity were the norm. That long winter of discontent erupted suddenly in an uncontrolled mass riot that lead promptly into the fake trial and quick execution of the Ceausescus late December 1989.

Times are different of course and Maduro/Florescu are not going to meet such fate. For them some golden exile somewhere, at worse a couple of years of jail as the price to be paid to avoid civil war, of going out peacefully. General corruption here and abroad, narco blackmailing everywhere, have done their job. Bringing them down with a crash is not good for a lot of people. The Ceausescus did not have such "friends" and safeguards.

However what is comparable is the extraordinary immobility of the regime today, avoiding any measure to get the economy running again while sacrificing a lot to service foreign state debt (service only, Nicolae at least was paying it). For the past two years the Maduro nominally presided regime has done nothing. Well, nothing that would see as an economic measure that could affect its electoral base. That the consequences of such policies are eroding it anyway does not seem to register much except in increasing repression. And talks of default have been banned, attacking any serious economist that suggests that default would be better for the people than what the regime is doing at keeping up the debt.

We may not be at the stage of one dim light bulb a home but we are heading that way. After all the frequent power outages make multiplicity of light bulbs irrelevant. What is more dramatic is that the regime itself takes credit as positive that there is still a couple of months of food in stock! Nobody even talks much about lack of medicine since food lines are by themselves already too time consuming, at least for those who live off the basic staples of Venezuelan diet.

Frustration in the populace grow and last Friday we had the first major rioting/looting reported (minor ones, and threats for bigger ones are now routine). Sure enough the Bolivar State governor said after the fact that there is no hunger and that the San Felix looting was for political interests. Just as chavismo blames all of its failures on alien stuff.

So did Nicolae blame the Timisoara revolt on foreign agents.


  1. Anonymous4:53 PM

    This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

    1. Nothing terrible about what you say. Actually the whole point of any Justice system is to determine an adequate level of punishment for numerous crimes, in order to set Precedents, establish a system or Order and Law, and especially to Deter other people from comitiing future crimes.

      That criminal whore Ceucescu probably deserved what she got. Criminal, ruthless dictators and thugs in Romania will probably think twice from now on..

      And that's a Huge problem in Murderzuela now: the appalling sense on complete Impunity. 2nd deadliest country in the world. Why? No Justice system, completely corrupt "judges", putrid penitentiary system, corrupt "police", "sebin", or guardia nazional: complete Impunity.

      So the thugs feel free to commit any crime. A little death sentence here or there, with 200% positive proof, with DNA, witnesses, etc, etc, wouldn't hurt, at all. Look at Singapore, how they delt with crime.

      And now the also corrupt MUD is offering complete Amnesty,, Expect 15 or 20 Thousand Dead, murdered each month for decades to come.


  2. Milonga5:01 PM

    Great post Dano! Best of all: you´re back! Was missing your insight! And it does seem like the peace before the storm, but can't count on things really happening, not just yet. It's sad and frustrating! And one does feel like Anonymous above.... Love!

  3. Happy to see you back. That is the most important.

  4. Boludo Tejano5:40 PM

    So did Nicolae blame the Timisoara revolt on foreign agents.

    Coincidentally, I watched videos of Ceaușescu's final speech in the last week or two. He made many references to "free...independent...Romania" which at least implies that those who didn't support Ceaușescu were NOT in support of "free...independent...Romania" which definitely implies that those who didn't support him were pawns of foreign agents.

    Conveniently, the ethnic Hungarians in Romania- though only 5% Timisoara - in could by definition be labeled as pawns of foreign agents.

  5. Anonymous7:45 PM

    This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

  6. I have had to delete two comments because I cannot allow comments that incite violence, even less against members of the regime. PLEASE: for those who comment bear in mind that the author of the blog is also responsible of the comments of its guest according to Venezuelan current law. And also that the author is the last English blogger still in Venezuela. Surely you would not want to lose that voice.

    For those who I had to delete you are welcome to put your comments back but written in a more appropriate way.

    1. charly3:41 AM

      Daniel, your comparison of these two characters while talking of coincidences cannot but assist a twisted mind like mine dream of a possible final consequence.

  7. Anonymous4:10 PM

    I am the violence commentator, and I sincerely apologize. You were right and I was wrong. It is just so very frustrating watching the arrogance. Sorry. My emotions got the better of me.

  8. Will she win MCM's seat?

  9. Anonymous8:01 PM

    It has been said that planes are constantly fueled up and ready to take the Castro family and other higher ups to Argentina or a safe place elsewhere if a revolt occurs (say upon Fidel's death). Obama may welcome them to the White House for a few weeks until permanent housing is found if necessary.

    Ceaușescu was pure bastard and had no reservation about creating national poverty, misery, torture, and death just to maintain his power and luxury life style. The one hour trial Ceaușescu got was more than he deserved. Ceaușescu did not have an escape plan but tried to run within Romania. He was captured and executed.

    Maduro's day is coming soon. The Cubans may have Maduro believing that he can last 50 years like Fidel. But reality will happen before the end of 2015

  10. "Madame" Ceausescu got exactly what was coming to her. Her crimes against the Nation were extreme. "Madame" she was called was used as a derogatory term signifying a cold, distant, kind of forced, not earned respect..She was hated and still is. Perhaps it is time to resurrect the title for "Madame" Cilia.


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