It’s now been a month and a bit since the first and – AFAIK – the last broadcast of "Suddenly…Chávez", the "new" Chávez radio show launched with such fanfare ("as part of the artillery of thought") in early February. When you think about it, it’s pretty amazing: the show was aired once before everyone forgot all about it never to speak of it again. Can the path from shiny new announcement to dustbin of collective Alzheimers really be that short? Really?!
Maybe it’s not so surprising. The concept was, by all accounts, a monument to redundancy: There’s nothing new about "Suddenly…Chávez" – that might as well be the motto of the last eleven years. You’re listening to some music on the radio on your commute to work and suddenly…Chávez decides to have a Cadena for the next three hours. You’re supporting your family with a jewellery store in downtown Caracas and suddenly…Chávez expropriates you. You vote for one guy to be mayor of your city and suddenly…Chávez decides to name one of his cronies to do the job.
Redundant though the entire concept was, I’m still a little bit staggered that the whole thing lasted literally one show. Which, I think, encapsulates chavista management pretty neatly. Take a half-baked idea, announce it with massive fanfare, then immediately forget all about it.
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