How not to write a poll question


Over on the Spanish side we tut-tut Alfredo Keller’s question-writing skills…but still go on to pick out some of his results.

Main point: Henrique Capriles Radonsky is the clear front-runner for the oppo nomination in 2012, leading both among anti-chavistas…

And the politically non-aligned…

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      • Quico- This is rather funny…..there are more comments at the other site due to people commenting on your poor Spanish writing abilities, and not the topic! We never criticize your English at this site. I wish I could write so well. If they beat you down too bad at the other site just come back over here. Your fans will be waiting.

  1. Funny how many of the top opposition candidates are either members of the wealthiest families of the Venezuelan oligarchy: Capriles, Lopez Mendoza, Machado Zuloaga, etc., or political dinosaurs from the IV republic who supported to 2002 coup.

    But our opposition friends here deny that the old oligarchy still exists, and would have us believe that the Venezuelan opposition parties no longer represent the “old guard”, that they don’t represent a return to the IV republic, and that they are somehow “new” and “different” from the parties of the past.

    Hee! Hee! You guys make me laugh.

        • HalfEmpty:

          “Perhaps this is the plan?

          (1.)Abandon the English version to Anglo-Trolls

          (A.) Post:
          (A.X) Videos of “La Tigresa del Oriente”;
          (A.Y) “Spicy” pics of obscure c-type celebrities;
          (A.Z) Weird irrelevant news from pets/freaks/anything half a world away…
          (A.Z.1) Annoying e-MARKETING from online purchase clubs/supermarkets/dental clinics…

          (III.) PROFIT!”


    • I guess being Nouveau riche is OK like the Chavez, Chacon clan etc.
      Hell even Lina Ron’s widower is owner of a race horse!

      In 12 more years time the current clowns will be old oligarchy.

      This was the plan, Stan:

      (A.) start psuedo revolution

      (B.) rob your ass off and let corruption and incompetence reign


      • It’s not profit – it’s ill-gotten gains, the kind that require much less actual work than earning profits. To the ones taking it, the difference is moot, but it’s definitely significant.

    • Hilarious how not a single of these oppo tools can even address my argument with anything more than gibberish. And then they call ME the troll! Thanks for the laughs guys!

      • I’ll give you a reply.

        I think you make a good point that there are plenty of the old school still swimming around and they should probably leave politics for the good of Venezuela.

        But to have some rich people involved in politics is what happens the world over and even (shock!) happens in the PSUV. I’m sure Cabello, Chacon & Ramirez aren’t living in ranchos and taking the metro to work for example. Politics isn’t a cheap game for the opposition when the Government uses state resources to campaign against you.

        Come to think of it, why is Chavez still President? Because he implicitly supports the rapidly growing wealth (i.e. rampant corruption) of his associates and offers this patronage to anyone greedy enough to support him.

        • Bob, you didn’t answer my argument. My argument wasn’t about showing that there are rich people involved in politics.

          My argument was to refute the common stance around here that the opposition is somehow “different” than before, and that the candidates don’t represent the same old entrenched interests from before Chavez. That is clearly false given that most of the candidates are either directly linked to the wealthy families of the old oligarchy, or are themselves political dinosaurs from the IV republic and supported the coup, or both!

          You are correct in pointing out that there are also rich people in the PSUV (although not as many, and probably not nearly as rich), which I agree is also a problem, but they do not come from the same old entrenched interests that have been ruling Venezuela for the last half century.

          • Ron Reagan Jr. had a direct line – and a pretty damn strong one – to Ronald Reagan, his father, which must explain why they turned out SO much alike. (By “alike” I mean “not alike.”)

            Also, notice that these are not self-declared “candidates,” but called “leaders” by Keller for purposes of the question.

            Besides, some people, including politicians, can change with changing times. Alan Garcia is a Latin American example of that.

            I don’t think it’s anyone’s responsibility here to argue that this list of people is “new” or “different.” I think that’s up to the candidates, whomever they end up being. Once they attempt to do that – or if they don’t – then there’s something substantive to discuss.

          • Some things never change. Like pretend revolutionaries from far away, who delude themselves that they are benefiting those Venezuelans who need the most help, simply by tapping away at a keyboard and repeating the me ole phoney gospel: oligarchy, IV republic, old guard, political dinosaurs…


          • First, Ron Reagan and his dad didn’t represent entrenched economic interests that have controlled major sectors of the national economy for decades. So that comparison is bogus.

            Second, if you could show that any of the oppo candidates have done like Ron Reagan did, and rejected the political stances of their respective families, then you might have a point. But they haven’t done that. In fact, they appear to hold very similar stances to their predecessors.

            Third, anyone who supports these candidates DOES have the responsibility to explain how they are “new” or “different” from the past, unless of course you simply agree that you are supporting the same entrenched groups that ruled Venezuela before Chavez. That’s okay, of course, but let’s just be honest here about who we’re supporting, okay?

          • Ronald Reagan “didn’t represent entrenched economic interests that have controlled major sectors of the national economy for decades”? Wow – I would only expect an argument like that from his staunchest supporters. I guess the military-industrial complex came to be in 1981, then.

            As for the rest, my previous point stands. It’s up to the candidates, if they want to be candidates. And then, only if they want to. If some Venezuelan voter really wants Chavez out (and wants it to happen democratically), then they will be looking at the possibilities and trying to figure out who would do the best job. I don’t define that as support, but rather considering future support, and therefore your argument doesn’t apply.

            Besides, you’re asking – demanding – that people prove a negative. Give it time, so there’s some real evidence, and not just an appearance, one way or another. In other words, relax. There’s plenty of time.

          • The Reagan family was not tied economically to the military-industrial complex. Ronald Reagan may have represented them while he was in power, but you’d have to show that his family was somehow entrenched in that industry to expect that his son would also be interested in representing the same industry.

            This is a non-sensical argument anyway. To say that because Ron Reagan didn’t agree with his dad on everything must mean that the Venezuelan oppos don’t agree with their respective family/economic groups is just plain silly.

    • Hey Los!

      You’re the third person this week to point me to that blog. That guy Santos really is a great writer. I should suck up to him more…

      • He was my teacher at IESA, he is amazing, not only a whiz with numbers, also with a poetic side that comes up so well in his writtings. Really worth reading him. The article about not honoring some of the crazy debt that Chavez is acquiring is very very interesting.

      • FT,

        Lol, you? jalabolas? Bicho, ni se te ocurra. Aquí te tocaría competir con todos los Phd en esa materia que trabajan para el gobierno y creo estarías en una gran desventaja. De pana que no creo que les ganes! jejeje. Besides, your too smart and mala conducta for that anyways.

        Santos seems to be on the right track. Also, he writes in a way everyone can understand. A friend of mine referred me to him not long ago so I started to read some of his articles from back in the day. The guy is funny and, most importantly, knows his stuff:

        “¿Cómo le explica uno a la gente que no tiene cómo cubrir sus necesidades básicas, que esas dádivas presidenciales son pan de hoy y hambre de mañana? Mi teoría es que esas personas ya saben que esos regalos de hoy son insostenibles, que ese dinero se les está pagando de una manera que va a generar una inflación tal, que muy pronto no va a tener ningún poder de compra. Mi teoría es que ya la gente asimiló que el aumento de 10% promedio que se les otorgó en el 2003 (10% en Julio y 20% en Octubre, da en promedio para el año 10.15%), se quedó pálido al lado de la inflación que generó la recesión y la falta de dinamismo de la economía venezolana. Mi teoría es que los venezolanos de todos los niveles están preocupados y perplejos mirando cómo el borracho se embriaga e inunda la economía de liquidez. El problema está en que, por esas imperfecciones de las metáforas y de los símiles, hay alguna probabilidad esta vez de que la resaca no la sufra el borracho, sino los que vengan a sacarlo del bar.”


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