Did he deliver? (Updated)

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I’ve been out all day, so I missed Henrique Capriles’ speech. I can’t find a complete transcript, and I haven’t seen the video, so your thoughts are appreciated. Here is what I can gather, based on the points we wanted him to hit yesterday:

1. Defining himself and his vision: He says his vision is “progresista”, i.e., left-of-center, and definitely left-of-PJ. “Our country has more future than present,” a phrase he seems to have jumbled because the way it used to be, it said we have more future than past. He emphasized quality of life, saying that government needs to find solutions. In essence: all pragmatism, little ideology, third way all the way. His motto: “There is a way.” That’s his vision. Oh, and he mentioned his jail term, just like we told him to, saying jail taught him not to hate.

2. Going wonky. Very little from what I’ve seen. He did say he wouldn’t lift exchange controls immediately. Debatable, but I can see the logic of that.

3. Challenges he will face. Not much on this from what I can gather. Perhaps he didn’t think he needed to address this.

4. Use symbols. I don’t know if he quoted Rómulo Gallegos, but the backdrop of Venezuelans wearing their national colors was stunning. Visually very appealing, plus it reinforces his “tricolor” message.

5. Have fun. No idea. Haven’t seen the video yet.

Oh, his website is up and running.

Thoughts?

Disclaimer: Same as here.

Update: Here’s a video. Note that at 3:55 more or less he says, when discussing the government’s progress in putting social issues up front, “la tarea está incompleta.” I can’t believe he said that …

1 COMMENT

  1. I liked what I saw, but there’s room to improvement. The whole theme of unity and progress can connect with the base and the “ni-ni”, even with some softcore chavista who are dissapointed of the current state of things (maybe not with Chavez himself, but with his policies and his posse of ministers). I’m personally a Third way follower.

    I wished he offers more details about how he can apply what he has done in Baruta and Miranda to the whole nation. Glad that he doesn’t shy away of his previous role as the last president of the Chamber of Deputies. Like the atmosphere and the narrative he wants to propose, but I want more specifics.

    About not lifting currency control right away, that’s just common sense. The economy would just collapse in days otherwise. If the whole system must be dismounted, then it has to be done in an orderly and effective manner. Same thing with lifting the gasoline subsidy. Things should be done right or better don’t be done at all. If he wins, the country’s situation would be a big quagmire.
    The calm and sanity that Lopez Contreras once said is the way to go.

  2. Na guará, Juan, that thing about “progresista” must have scared the hell out of you :-).
    At the very least you took out your PJ card and started to look at it in disbelief.

    • I think you’re misquoting him:

      “No son las expropiaciones el camino, no es la tarea del gobierno destruir el empleo, la tarea es crear millones de empleos.”

      It doesn’t sound like he’s saying government has to create jobs, he seems to be saying the nation has to create jobs.

    • Not to sound offensive, but this seems to be such a technicality to be judging him so early on the run. The government “can create jobs” by incentivizing new hires in the private industries (tax breaks? more fair legislation?), for example, or by creating state run companies, or by hiring more public employees, etc, etc. Explaining this further, imho, would have been rather tedious at this stage. I believe the first speech should move people’s emotions, and I think he is almost there; at least I think he has improved a lot in the past months. Later on (sooner rather than later) he should start running down his program in such a manner that people understand him, or in criollo pues.

      When I see a HCR govt. program saying something ludicrous like “queremos un gobierno que cree millones de empleo… al dar empleos dignos en la empresa pública”, then I will worry and honour vsalomon’s foresight forever.

      • It’s an ideological problem. As you say Government should provide an environment so that jobs are created; however, Capriles is not just gonna provide the environment, I dare say he believes the Government should create jobs. Why? Because he’s a leftist.

    • He may need a better speechwriter. Today’s speech is not as stellar as the previous one. As for the sentence of reference, yeah, I think it’s nebulous, even wishy-washy. I keep trying to find clear comparisons with the current government.

    • No, I think you need to breathe deep, smoke some therapeutical weed, and put the commas where they go: “El que mira al pasado siempre, nunca ve el futuro”. Far far away histerics never help.

      • histerics (sic)? maybe you’re smoking too much. but thanks a bunch. it might have helped had it been: el que siempre mira al pasado, nunca ve el futuro.

        • Oh, no, why, oh why, did I forgot the Y in “hysterics”? Why, o why, didn’t I favour an English construction for the understanding of the gringos over the Spanish construction for Venezuelans (when we all know the Gringos are more important?).

          At least, I’m not in an intellectual/hysterical comma. I’m falling asleep, and I can still read between the lines. As I have said before, this “site” is just like a PTA. Sorry to be one of the little Country Club girls…

          Got to work tomorrow, guys and gals, y antes tengo que dejarle lista la lonchera a mi hija…

          Sleep well on your first world guilt…

      • Is this the same Mary who told us how humble she was in the same sentence she wrote her ancestors included a viceroy or whatever, her dad was a famous professor on I don’t know what, etc, etc and who saw herself as the neutral person with social feelings who was putting to ridicule “the rich and pretentious” but was not Chavista? The Spanish teacher in the USA who has to repeat a zillion times she is hispanic?

        Oh, Iisus Khristos! Bring the Tatars back! They were less annoying!

        • No, it’s not. The only Viceroys I know where cigarretes. As always, any criticisms here is met with a prejudice and ad-feminem…

        • Tatars LOL.
          You have an excellent memory, Kep. I think I remember someone along the lines you describe. Neutral person my behind…

  3. Leopoldo and MCM have much better policies, I understand he is trying to appeal to the disgruntled Chavista but nothing will change if this is truly the way he thinks. Total fail.

    I like the guy, but Chavismo light is not the solution. Granted, I if it comes down to him and Chavez I will vote for him.

    • MCM, and to some extent Leopoldo, has no policies. She has ideas, some rather good ones I must admit. I have yet to hear her saying something like “I will promote production of good x by providing credits to y sector(s), so that we will double our production capacity by z percent, lower price of good x, etc etc”

      From her, I have heard things like “I am in favour of popular capitalism”. I mean, even her website is rather vague on policies, or even rather empty: http://mariacorina.com/?module=verpropuesta2&id=13.

  4. The thing I really dislike from him was he imitating Chavez; saying “Capriles” in third person… But, still that’s what the unity is about. We are all together on this road siding with those who want the best for the country. I say this because in a normal democracy, it’s a given that all parties of the political spectrum have a vision to make of the country the best giving the best for the people.

    At that point I can side in what I think is the right way to achieve what’s best for the country. Right now, the ruling party just wants the best for the elite, they want to have absolute control and absolute power, and they don’t care about the people nor democracy. At this point we have no other choice but to be united.

    So, if Capriles is the man, so be it.

  5. Hey, I think He is not talking to you but to the vast majority of Venezuelans that don’t need as much specifics as you need, they want emotions and phrase they like: autobus del progreso, empleos de calidad para todos, hay un camino, el petroleo es de todos, etc., etc., lots of emotions were there today

    • Yes. In terms of winning the presidency he needs to speak to the majority of the Venezuelan people. But in terms of doing what’s right he has to have the leadership to do things that may not appeal to the majority. That’s what leaders do. I didn’t get that from him. He is acomodaticio to the circumstance.

      All his life Capriles has been right wing; now he switched to left. Has anyone asked why?

      • “Esta es la hora de Venezuela, no es la hora de la izquierda ni de la derecha”

        There’s a cliche handy for every question, vsalomon.

    • Yes…to some extent. But hopefully not Zaratrusta, he needs to read something like Glaeser’s “The Triumph of the City.” I do not want him to become pedantic, and more often than not well read people come across as overtly pompous…so be careful with what you wish!

      • Reading a bunch of books without background, without analytical thinking and without system is not good. Look at Chávez. He has certainly read more than the average Venezuelan (which is not that hard as the average tends to read close to nothing). Still, reading can help.

        It’s not “something like”. Are we Venezuelans 10-book guys? When I checked out the top 10 books in sale in Venezuela last year it looked like the top 9 books on sales 30 or 40 years ago plus one new beststeller. A top politician does not need to be a bookworm but he must have some general knowledge and he must work on his rhetoric. It greatly helps if he has read a couple more books than what he needed to conclude his studies in law, engineering, literature, economics or medicine.
        My impression is that even people with a university degree – say, law as HCR – just read what they had to read, period. Perhaps I am completely wrong, but that is what it sounds when he talks, also vision-wise.

        As a politician you have to know your way around syntax, have a good command of vocabulary, even if at the end you most of the time adjust your speech to the common denominator. You also have to have a general knowledge of the world, even if that is not always necessary as we see in the case of…well, I won’t mention names.

        • I dunno, Kep. Capriles has shown himself to be well motivated and goal oriented (completing a law degree, entering politics at a young age), to say nothing of his proven accomplishments, while navigating the political course and executing as governor of Miranda, no easy task during the current administration. I may not vote for him, but I fully respect his achievements. Ese pájaro vuela alto. Command of syntax or not. For me, he has the chops for the task ahead.

          Besides knowing how to delegate, communication is key in a political role. And let’s face it, hay muuucho pueblo, muuucho populismo. If Capriles wants to win that segment over, he can’t risk alienating them by talkin’ fancy.

          Where I think he might improve is with timing, maybe slowing down just a touch by omitting a few repetitive sentences. Don’t know if you heard the two drrrring‘s in the posted videos. I suspect they may have sounded at the one-third marks to warn ‘el candidato’ of where he was in his speech, and how much more he had to go.

          He could have practised his speech, perhaps an extra two times, to better cement his concepts and their delivery. That might have avoided the minor slip-ups.

          I like the warmth from his website http://www.henriquecaprilesradonski.com/. The sky blue background (tending towards the cooler end of the colour wheel), denotes trust, as opposed to the inflammatory reds. And of course, the photos are perfect (though their loading on his website could be faster.). They show him to be very willing — no refined fingertips à la MCM — to embrace salt-of-the-earth types. Henrique has no fear of getting involved. Face and body language seem open and direct. That contrasts with the current jerk in office who played his cards ‘sigilosamente’ at the start of his campaign, before his squirrelly answers to interview questions revealed (at least to me) that he was mentally unstable.

          Someone mentioned getting rid of the cap. In a general sense, I might agree. And yet, that cap offers an extra bit of promotional real estate, so to speak, especially to the aforementioned populist segment. I suspect that if by some miracle HCR ended up taking the oath of office, he would not so while wearing a tricolor cap.

          Bueno, enough. Those are my optics.

  6. Everyone- “la tarea está incompletahe”,,,,,he was appealing to the sea of happiness vote. Whatever happens when their boat sinks after the election is irrelevant.

  7. Did he deliver? I saw a number of faces who seemed to be weighing the discourse, who didn’t get all emotional about it. Which is good. I would agree with Juan: third way all the way. HCR’s motto is ‘el camino’, his bus is progress, not just for those with a red T-shirt, but for all.

    After reviewing his speech more than once, I was not as disappointed with his efforts. But there is some room for improvement. Maybe the next time.

    In the meantime, here are key concepts/phrases (caprilismos) I culled from 3 video clips:

    cuánto tiempo más hay que esperar?
    el camino más corto o más facil no nos lleva al lugar que queremos
    queremos salir a la calle sin sentir temor, un abastecimiento normal de productos, de luz, de agua
    la tarea del gobierno es de crear empleo de calidad para todos
    si podemos. si podemos avanzar. es posible
    durante estos últimos años, mucho se ha dicho sobre lo social
    no basta con decir, merecemos más, merecemos mucho más.
    no se trata simplemente de prometer cosas, se trata de hacer, de lograr
    nosotros somos un país que tiene más futuro que pasado, somos un país que tiene más presente (ooops!), que tiene más futuro que presente
    las cosas buenas que se han hecho hay que continuarlas …., pero las cosas que no se han hecho, tenemos que hacerlas, pero tenemos que hacerlas juntos, juntos podemos lograr las soluciones a todos los problemas
    la tarea está incompleta, necesitamos encontrar las herramientas .. para que todos puedan progresar, la tarea es una vida de tranquilidad y progreso. Para hacerlo, es necesario que transitemos el camino de la unión, hay que dejar de pensar en el yo para pensar en el nosotros.
    hay un camino, es un camino que va hacia adelante, es un camino para el progreso, es un camino que yo hoy invito a todos a recorrer juntos, juntos podemos lograr ese camino, juntos tenemos la fuerza para buscar ese camino.

    empleo de calidad = mejor vida (sin hambre) = una vida de progreso => seguridad
    vamos a crear un camino para eso
    somos progresistas
    somos amigos de multiplicar las oportunidades y enemigos de los privilegios
    creemos en el derecho de cada quien a pensar por si mismo
    el gobierno = un orientador, ≠ un controlador
    esta no es la hora ni de la izquierda, ni de la derecha, es la hora de Vzla, de los vzlanos
    hay un camino. (bis) Y juntos lo podemos recorrer. Hay un camino y tenemos un plan. Se llama progreso.
    Progreso para todos los vzlanos.
    Progreso con un empleo de calidad.

    • Thanks syd. I agree with your assessment.

      As I was telling Omar yesterday, the most notable thing about his speech was the message discipline. The message is clear, and coherent. That’s 80% of the job right there. So what if he didn’t discuss as many specifics as most of us wonks wanted?

  8. Caprilles said today ” I believe there is a better
    path and we can find it for Venezuela” paraphrased.
    I like so much his emphasis of power in a positive,
    united way.
    So, in my opinion. Yes! Caprilles delivered!!
    Syd -I am of the opinion that he did very well. And very clear.
    I actually think he got it about right. I like the feel and sound-
    and I believe the more people see and hear Caprilles -the more
    they will like him very much. Viva la difference!!

  9. He delivered, I mean, he is slowly converging to becoming a ‘votable candidate’. I have not heard his policies yet, which is fine as long as he starts being more specific little by little. I have always thought that one of the biggest problems in Venezuelan politics is that the party warfare of the past 13(wait 61?) years has made it rare for politicians to say what exactly will they be doing in office, because Chavez, and many others in the past, only practiced ’emotional politics’ by appealing to people’s emotions, and not their minds. Hopefully this whole crisis will eventually bring use a new type of politics…soon.

    However, I must say that I have felt more ‘goosebumps’ (in a positive way) when hearing MCM. Rationally speaking, I will not vote for her because I feel she is inexperience, and because HCR has more content, but I have to admit that she has been better at trying to win my emotional voter side.

  10. I must admit that with the new “kids on the block” in venezuelan politics – MCM, PP & HVR – I tend to get quite nervous before I see the videos. I’m always scared that they are going to screw it up some how. I feel they all are a little wobbly.
    I guess it’s still fresh the memory of Irene Saez delivering her stupid speech of the “mama estado”, that after cost her losing to Chavez and we are still paying for that stupid mistake.
    Anyway, watching the video I guess it was better of what I thought: he used a simple language, understandable to everyone, and quite consistent with his non confrontational message of governing for everybody.
    He just needs a little more speeches out there and he will be alright.

        • Thank you Syd. You saved me the time to look for a reference and that’s a great one.
          (Sorry guys about the confusion about “mama” and “mamá”. I don’t have accents at my computer at home…)

          • You’re welcome.
            As for accents, etc., that’s an easy fix. Here’s Win 7’s methodology (earlier platforms had a less complex roadmap).

            Go to start > type keyboard international > Region and Languages > Keyboards and Languages > Change keyboards> General (Text Services and Input Languages). Select English (United States) – United States International > Apply. (*)

            Now, you’ll be able to incorporate accents, etc., as follows:

            To accent a vowel, just hit (tecla) apostrophe + (tecla) vowel..
            For the ñ, just hit (tecla) tilde + (tecla) ‘n’.
            For the diéresis, just hit (tecla) quote marks + (tecla) ‘u ‘.

            Ahí tienes.

            (*) I don’t know if this system works with English (Canada) – Canadian Multilingual Standard.

          • That’s hilarious! and not so far from the truth. LOL
            I don’t really talk much about computers and I don’t really care about systems and such. I’m not in charge of the computer department at home. That’s up to the geek I’m married to, but It’s true that our lifes move around Apple: iPods, iPhone, iPads, Apple TV and an iMac.
            My first personal computer was a Macintosh 512K, and I had a MacLC before the big move. And remember I design pretty things to make people happy for a living.
            So yeap. Steve.
            And Ingvar too, but he is still alive.

            PS: I’m going to send that link to my husband. LOL

  11. Syd,

    Learn the difference between abnormal aggression and assertiveness: Example:

    Assertive – ” I am bored with these conversations”

    aggressive: I can’t believe you don’t know the difference between such and such,you are such a bigot….or sarcasm as in “could you please give us your qualifications for your opinions?”

    Inventing straw augments to attack is Kepler’s Forte, and yours is to take everything you dislike and insult the person for it.

    This blog is ruined by a few.

    We can express our feelings without trying to make the other person look bad.

    • thank you for your nth lecture, FP. Many of us find them so illuminating, that the brilliance practically blinds us. I’m delighted that you found a platform to express your frustrations, and yes, at certain intervals, anger and aggression (your repeated use of caps and symbols is a dead give-away). But keep spinning, keep up the pretense. You just might convince a few someday. LOL.

    • JC,

      This is a side issue ( maybe)…but one thing that concerns me about Capriles is the fact that with Chavez there has surged a great deal of anti- Antisemitism.So much so , that one of the reasons we left Venezuela was for this reason.

      I am afraid people will use it against him in some way.From what I know the Capriles family has traditionally been a Sephardic name from Curacao.I know this because it is a family name of my husband.This is true also of the Curiels, and the Maduros.Perhaps there are other Capriles who are not originally Jewish- I don’t know.But Radonski also sounds Jewish.Many Jews immigrated to Venezuela from Curacao, and changed their religion to fit in more with the group- so if I were him, I would not play up the religious part too much….just a feeling.

        • What do you mean it is who is is? Jewish or not Jewish ?…that is the question ?He comes across as Christian in the video.

          I also believe in people being up front with the truth, something unfortunately most politicians avoid.I believe in letting the chips fall where they may as well…but it does cost votes .It’s a dilemma.

          One of the biggest problems I have seen in Venezuela and the US. is that in order to manipulate the votes politicians manipulate the truth in campaigning, then later cannot live up to an illusion.Over time problems don’t get fixed, and people lose faith in the governments….and it becomes a vicious circle.At some point all of this has to stop.

          I feel that both US and Venezuela have come to the end of the rope when it comes to manipulations.

          • “Manipulate the truth”? How so? Why do you think he’s not being truthful?

            I think it’s clear that he’s Catholic, but his grandmother was Jewish.

          • Well, according to many groups of Jews he is a Jew and always will as his mother is a Jew, no matter what he believes in or says he believes in. Chavistas will mention that in some circles. I have seen already some references to that.
            On the side: Firepigette is right, Capriles is a Sephardic surname.

    • I liked it. Not so much that the sun made him squint, but the photos and videos and the story of who he is and that he has been always involved in public service since the very beginning of his adult life.

      • The squinting could have easily been avoided by having the videographer, either shift to another POV (pt of view) or arrange to shoot at another time of day. A slightly more overcast day would have been useful; there’s a huge amount of reflection going on, on that yellow roof of the school. In addition, I suspect a reflector was used to broaden the light source on HCR’s face and avoid “raccoon eyes”. When you’re squinting, and you have to deliver what is needed (in this case, a bio), you tend to make more facial effort, which in turn makes you tense.

        I liked the content of the video. Too bad about its set-up, no fault of the candidate.

    • It’s a very nice, well-done video, but I am still not buying the HRC brand. I can’t put my finger to it, but there’s something missing there, something that doesn’t ring true.

      HRC so far feels rather artificial, like he is reading a script created in a PR lab. Yes, he tells about his granny, family, religion and his life, but I cannot connect to it. The whole thing comes out as something very nondescript. Probably his family is not into that, but some old pics are not enough. Sorry, but I need something up-close and personal.

      JC, I know you like the guy, and it looks like the guy has had a very nice political career til now, but so far I haven’t seen much a personality in HRC. If he wants to be our Head Honcho, he better shows us one. I’m not even asking for a real one, but he has to have one that people can connect with.

      * Can you or someone from PJ tells us some of the success stories of his time in Baruta? I cannot tell whether he did a good job or he was liked because he is anti-chavista. That could be of use. So far, I have only not quite enthusiastic reviews from a couple of friends who lived there at the time. What about Miranda?

      • By the way, I was intrigued by the yellow building in the background. I thought it was some kind of shopping mall or something. I didn’t like it much because it gave the video an “upper-class” air. Turns out, as we can see later in the video, that it’s a public school. I’m told it’s in the middle of nowhere, and is designed by award-winning architect Oscar Tenreiro.

      • And yet, It doesn’t feel authentic. I am not calling the guy a phony or dishonest. It’s just that it seems as the guy is afraid of showing his true nature. I mean, this guy goes to jail for a crime that wasn’t and I can’t get the slightest emotional response to that. Where’s the anger? Where’s the conviction not to let that ever happen again? It feels like a two dimensional character.

        I know that he is trying to sell himself as the guy that is not looking for a revenge, a guy that can put an end to the polarization and all that, but if he can sell me his story, how is he suppose to persuade a ni-ni or a chavista?

        If he wins the oppo primary, I really hope he gets his act together. Otherwise this guy won’t be a match for the ol’ snake oil salesman from Sabaneta.

        • Not angry, just human. Only Jesus would be willing to offer his other cheek if he gets slapped. Indeed, only Jesus can do that without being called a wuss. I get the whole “I am a good christian” perspective, but your regular dude is not an altar boy.
          I liked the approach of Richard Blanco, for example: after spending some time in prison he wasn’t talking about forgiveness. He was talking about the hell our prisons are and how he will do all he can to improve the conditions of the inmates. Charity instead of passivity. That’s a christian attitude I can connect with.
          I am not asking HRC to go Charles Bronson/Harry Brown on the bad guys. I am just asking him to show some human emotions I can relate to.

          I assume he is trying to convince as much undecided people as he can. Being one of those, I guess I should be part of his target audience. But probably you’re right and he will never be good enough for me…

          • A Barreda,

            charity vs passivity…I would agree….charity is active love….passivity is not active enough to be charitable

          • I guess he realized people are tired of so much hate coming out of politician’s mouth, at least I know I am. Or maybe he’s just weird like that and left everything behind, because as he said “He who always looks at the past will never see the future”.

  12. JC,

    Where did I say he manipulated the truth ?…I was talking about politicians in general….I do however think that there is a good possibility that he is presenting himself in a certain light that might not be completely the way he is-That’s generally what political propaganda is about.

    What worries me is that in a country where antisemitism is growing exponentially it might be better for him to simply avoid religion as a theme, given his background.

    To me this video has a false ring to it.He, as a person, might be my favorite candidate,along with MCM, but he is not coming across as authentic on the videos.

    • I think he comes across as extremely authentic. Weird how we read it differently. He went to jail, and had a religious conversion. It would take a cynic to fake that sort of thing, plus he doesn’t really need to.

      • JC
        It is strange how differently we can perceive things…The odd thing I see on these videos is that he looks like an authentic and decent guy trying to look that way instead of just being himself…..I don’t know If I explain myself well here.

      • Totally agree with firepigette. He seems like a nice guy. I give you that. But the thing is that he doesn’t feel real.
        I guess that expectations are also part of the problem, JC. You really, really want to like the guy and I don’t. I am skeptic and I don’t know if I can trust him. Of course I can’t get to know him in person, so I can only trust him if he shows me a part of his persona I can connect with. Unfortunately, I don’t ‘t find that in HRC.

        • A Barreda,

          To me that lack of realness I sense in him feels like insecurity….of course he has good reason to be….

          It is not that he isn’t angry that bothers me, it is that I don’t feel the power of presence in him

          In some countries, that might not matter, but somehow in Venezuela, at this time , I think it
          might.

      • The video reminded me of a Chigüire Bipolar article on how Leopolde López
        wanted to finish caudillismo in Venezuela.

        http://www.elchiguirebipolar.net/26-09-2011/venezuela-supera-caudillismo-con-lluvia-de-papeles-sobre-hermoso-lider-carismatico/

        The guy is interviewed about his life almost as if we were seeing here some kind of music idol or Gandhi. I try to imagine a politician in a developed nation in an interview about his life like this…the problem is not him but the whole team that set that up. I can only imagine Berlusconi doing this.

        Capriles doesn’t really need to say he “believes in the Virgin” (what’s that supposed to mean? she is a god? she has special powers other dead people do not have?)

        George Walker Bush and Glenn Edward Lee Beck had religious conversions.
        Bush claimed the turning point was with a visit by Billy Graham.
        Beck converted to become a Mormon after being into drugs & alcohol.
        Did they really think their conversions were real? It doesn’t matter a jot.
        Ah, by the way: Tonny Weapons of Mass Destruction Blair also was one of those converted…this time to Catholicism.

        Juan, you are a conservative Catholic. Capriles says he believes in the Virgin and you like that a lot. That Assumption is a very peculiar Catholic myth that is not based on any mention in the Bible: dead people are not said to have super powers, there is no single reference in the Bible that Mary flew to heaven, etc.
        http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Assumption_of_Mary#History
        Now: even if it were mentioned in the Bible: the vast majority of Venezuelans don’t need this kind of stuff when we want to decide for whom to vote. Most want our government being something completely separate from church.

        In general, the video seemed to me rather kitsch. I’d rather have heard him talking in more depth about any single issue.

        • The idea in itself is not bad. In other countries you have autobiographies* written by the candidates to sell ther personas. They tell their stories and later they go to any talk show available to make some waves. Barack Obama had one, and I think that almost every republican candidate has one.
          As you have mention many times before, books are not that interesting for regular guys in Venezuela, so this sort of things (videos, interviews, etc) is the best thing we are going to get.
          It would be great if any of these guys had the guts to write a book about themselves or their views, but I guess they are to afraid of gaffees to take the risk..

          * yes, I do know that these books are mostly written by ghost-writers, but the candidate still get the credit – and the blame – for what is written in the books. It’s his nameon the cover, after all.

        • The Assumption is not “Catholic myth”, it’s dogma. I guess to some people all dogma is myth, but to believers it’s insulting to confuse the two.

          I don’t understand why you, and others, get so worked up about the fact that he calls himself religious and is open about it.

          • JC,

            I think at least in my case you are misunderstanding what I mean, or I am not expressing it clearly.I admire people who stand up for their faith….so much so, and perhaps you will remember, that I stood up for a creationist on this blog at one time, incurring the absolute hatred of many.I am not a believer but I admire those who are.

            In the case of Capriles, things might get difficult for him in the future considering his backgound.People could use his faith against him quite easily.A politician is not the same as a private citizen like myself.

            I actually like it when people stand proudly for their faith….but what does it have to do with politics, and what can be made from his declarations by anti-Semites? These are my concerns and worries…nothing against him

          • Juan,
            I know for you it is a dogma, a dogma based on believes established centuries after the New Testament was written. For me as a non-Catholic Christian, it is a myth.
            Anyway, that’s not the main point, even if it does put me and others off.
            The thing is this:

            1) the video was for me too much of a personality show. I know most of America has presidential systems but we are up to our heads with caudillismo and it is running amok in Venezuela. He needs to be different from Chávez, he needs to be more than an educated Chávez who doesn’t talk about diarrhea, someone who does things for more than “por amor”. He needs to do what Venezuelan politicians have never done before and that is
            2) to talk about the things that matter: how to fix the mess we are in.
            And to do that he needs to talk about you, but also about you and you and you and you more than about “I”. And to do that he needs to talk not about you-all-Venezuelans but about you in Punto Fijo, you the nurse, you the mechanic, you the Tocuyano, you the oil worker in Monagas, you the Wayuu in Zulia.

      • I agree that there is something strange, something subtle that can make one doubt his authenticity and I think the problem is the accent, the way he speaks. To me it feels he is forcing “el pueblo” way to speak, and I doubt that he speaks like that naturally.

        Imagine him on a Sunday parrilla with family and friends in Prados del Este or Club Hipico. Would he be speaking in the same way?

        Or when people adapts the chat to get friends with the taxi driver / el mecanico. Don’t they notice the difference?

        HCR is doing the right thing avoiding the “sifrino” high class stamp, but if you do it too strong you risk people noticing, and then the message is at risk (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_medium_is_the_message)

        Chavez talk comes out very naturally and authentic, you know he has always speak like that, he is not forcing anything, and that in itself is an advantage even if what comes out is nonsense.

        I wish it would not matter. I wish MCM and HCR to speak in all their naturally sifrino way and still be voted from all social classes because of their ideas, beliefs and the ”ganas de sacar al pais adelante”. Unfortunately the society is too stratified with Chavez doing all he can to draw the political lines in parallel to the strata.

        • To some extent, yes. Now: Chávez is not the “natural” many think he is.
          I remember meeting here in Europe a woman who told me she is a cousin of his. When I heard her I recognised the Barinas accent I hadn’t heard for decades.
          Let’s remember how Chávez was trying to pronounce those postvocalic “s” in June when he declared he was ill. He has done things like that before.
          What Capriles lacks for me is vision, to show he has a greater scope than “working for all Venezuelans”. That’s all fine, but we need to hear something about what real transformations are going to take place. I would also like to hear from him things no other politician has told Venezuelans, some verdades.

  13. “Tengo mi vida puesta en esto”, he says, and I believe him. “La cárcel, cuando es injusta, pesa doble”: I totally get that the experience made him seek solace in religion and, though I’m not religious, I felt that faith really works for him. There is nothing gratuitous in this film, not even the squinting. The placing in front of the yellow building is genius, the vinotinto shirt is too. When he said “estoy listo para ser presidente” I found myself screaming “sí señor!”. This is very cleverly done and will move many people to consider him. I give it 5 stars.

    • You may be right Gold, sometimes I am not your typical viewer,and I am the first to admit it….I didn’t get the vibe you did, but maybe others will…I certainly hope you are right and I am wrong

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