Dropping Like Flies

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    With the opposition’s primary field winnowing out fast, there’s all kinds of activity over on our Oppo Primary Field Guide. We’ve added an “endorsements” section to each candidate, gotten rid of the Wildcards (who by now are obviously not running) and added detail to the top tier guys.

    The MUD’s decision to demand that candidates pay a steep ballot fee to help defray the cost of holding the primary has drastically up-ended the calculus for no-hopers, who face a 6-figure price tag to gratify their egos.

    Where Pablo Medina, or Cecilia Sosa, or Diego Arria are going to dig up Bs.525,000 to get onto the ballot I haven’t the faintest clue. One way or another, the inscription deadline is November 3rd, so by the end of this week we’ll have a complete slate of candidates.

    To my mind, the process is working admirably. As it stands, politicos who desperately clung on to the dream and needed to test the waters got a chance to dip their toes. Those, like Ledezma, who found it too chilly are logically backing out. Those who liked the tingle are diving in head first. That’s how this was meant to work, right?

    Anyway, check out the field guide. 

    1 COMMENT

    1. Against all knowing nods, informed chin-stroking with suitable pipe-assisted evaluative gestures and regardless of a certain misplaced rigidity in assigning either/or left-right politicial stances, somehow, I get the feeling that María Corina is gaining some traction.

    2. Some criptic messages from the leading candidate… Someone want to guess what is this all about?

      @hcapriles Henrique Capriles R.
      Entre cielo y tierra no hay nada oculto!Pendientes de algunas decisiones q quieren tomarse en las prox.hrs

      @hcapriles Henrique Capriles R.
      Mi compromiso es con tdos uds,con Miranda,con tda Venezuela,vamos a derrotar a este mal Gobierno pero también a la macolla

      • Fun rumor I just heard is that the MUD wants to hold primaries for Governor in Miranda…but not in Zulia!

        (Cuz apparently UNT has a title deed to Zulia.)

        • Drunk rabble:

          I was about to post that, however…

          I DON´T THINK IT WILL HAPPEN (I hope I am right).

          Politically speaking, no candidate has a chance in Miranda other than Enrique Mendoza, Ledezma or Petare mayor Ocariz. IMHO Ledezma will probably stick to Alcalde Mayor or Alcalde de Libertador, typical Ledezma territory, he will not play into AD/UNT´s agenda after getting scorned that badly, and Mendoza I believe is a much wiser politician than he was 5-10 years ago.

          Don´t get me wrong, I trust that UNT/AD/Tobias Carrero combo as much as I trust Julio Borges and the PJ finance arm (Castillo Bozo+Victor Vargas*), however, I trust even less all the rumors going around, because:

          a) You never know who generates rumors;

          b) In this case, UNT/AD has no clear contender/winner in Miranda, it´s too-big-a-sacrifice for too little gain;

          c) I´m sure Ledezma will not play into this, morethereof, the only mayor-elect UNT/AD has in Caracas is Gerardo Blyde, and his numbers are nowhere near “Governor-status”, hell, he might even end up losing his post along with LL´s dauphine Grateron. (I do believe both these cases might be causing all these rumors).

          PS: I do not support PJ, UNT, AD or even MCM, I just want Chavez out. I also want something better for my country.

          *Victor Vargas is financing everybody, hell, he has direct links to his BFF Ramón José Medina (PJ), Henry Ramos Allup (AD) through mutual family ties with the DeAgostino family and obviously his buddies in the government (PSUV).

          • Castillo Bozo? Is that his real name? I know this is OT, but could you explain to us a wee bit about his competences or lack of them?

            • Ther Castillo brothers are the owners of the infamous BanValor, they made a grotesque fortune during the “bono” festival as well as misteriously receiving many government deposits (both from the oppo and chavismo), additionaly, their insurane company was always favoured by Juan Barreto (Alcaldia Mayor), Aristobulo Isturiz (Ministerio de Educacion) and most recently it´s said that they partly financed HCRs bid for Governor of Miranda, in exchange they supposedly got to become the prefered insurance company of Miranda´s Government, which is now supposedly extending to HCRs presidential bid.

              These guys are currently out of the country, they ran away like many did during the “banking crisis”, they tried to play both sides and failed, however, they are FILTHY rich now, and much like many ex-chavistas, they desire to take down the government and start sucking money out from a new Oppo government…

              It infurates me to know how Vargas, Castillo, Carrero, Victor Gill, Wilmer Ruperti and a few others have made huuuuuge fortunes or in some cases increased their already vast ones, and yet given that we need their financing, they will be left unscathed when the nightmare is over, hell, they´ll probably become even richer if Chavez should lose/die.

            • Oh, my! This is so sad and disgusting. Those Bozos are definitely more Bozo than Leclerc’s.
              We need a party that pushes for hard-core transparency so as to avoid this (plus party funding as geha said)

              Thanks for the details.

    3. The Mud has just announced that we will have primaries for everyone on feb 12. Another way to put it is that they are not going to apply the exception of the articule 44 of the primaries rules according to which a governor or mayor opting for a higher post can postpone primaries in their jurisdiction for 45 days.

      In other words, there are gonna be primaries in Miranda (concurrent with the primaries for president) and no primaries for Zulia (because UNT sustained that they have the votes in the MUD to reach a consensus, no matter who the candidate is…). See the note (rich in details):

      http://www.unidadvenezuela.org/2011/10/elecciones-conjuntas-se-mantienen-para-el-12-de-febrero/

      Somehow this remind me the announcement that the primaries were going to be hold of february. Some parties using the Mud as “mampara” for their very own political strategies. AD/UNT is already showing its value to PP…

      • I think its a stupid mistake, Marquina (whom I believe they´ll support for governor) would never win, so in the end probably Ocariz takes it, and if HCR wins the Presidentials, there is going to be a lot of awkwardness in the MUD.

        Hopefully Ledezma won´t play into this, because he could, in theory make a good run at Governor, but it would be contrary to everything in yesterday´s speech.

        • I wonder how things will develop in Valencia Magna (wrongly called Carabobo). Scarano is rather popular in San Diego, and known in Guacara-Los Guayos. The Salas-Feo has everyone against them and don’t want to cooperate with anyone in the state less they lose some power in some region. They preferred to lose Valencia than to let the PJ-candidate be the only one in 2008. They went very low profile for 2009 because they wanted by all means indefinite reelection for the governor.

          • I believe it is a matter of brinkmanship: some local PJ politicos alienated possible alliances with the other parties by promoting primaries in their municipalities (especially that of a current campaign head of a certain UNT presidential candidate). Add to this that Capriles did everything in his power to actively snuff AD (dismissing its 70th anniversary, disregarding CAP’s burial, and so on), and they painted themselves into a corner, and this probably cost them many votes in the conversations (and possibly discouraging any other support. As for Copei and PV, even though they might support one of the leading candidates, their interests are so strange: Copei wanders aimlessly, and PV would love to derrail the primaries and have Salas (Sr.) crowned as a candidate instead.

            Is this an AD plot? Hardly: they have made the primarias their policy everywhere -including El Hatillo, where their alcaldesa is as good as toast-.

            The MUD effectively chose to abide to article 44 of its reglamento… But it is probably an open issue. Sadly, a public one. And chavismo is having a filed day with this: the news form the oppo camp should be “Lopez and Machado sign up for the primarias” and not “PJ: everyone hates us”.

            • Very true.

              I think PJ may have made a mistake in being a little overly enthusiastic pushing for some primaries in certain municipalities…

            • What? …Capriles did everything in his power to actively snuff AD (dismissing its 70th anniversary, disregarding CAP’s burial, and so on)…

              Put another way …

              Do you mean that when a US Republican candidate doesn’t attend the funeral of a former US democrat president, it means that the US Republican candidate is dismissing the Democratic Party?

              Do you mean that when a US Republican candidate doesn’t mention the 70th anniversary of the Democratic Party, it means that the US Republican candidate is dismissing that Democratic Party?

              As for the latest poor-me from PJ, I tend to agree with you. It comes across as immature: us versus the world.

            • I don’t think so. The Salas clan should be more worried about themselves. Salas-Römer was not that bad, actually he was good compared to the previous governors, but he acted like an “Imperator” in the last days of the Roman Empire. His people – the Salas and the wife’s family – the Feo – are very out of touch with the average state citizen. They spend their time in Northern Valencia and only do very timid incursions to some areas that are demographically not significant. Any sifrino politician from Caracas would look like an authentic hombre/mujer del pueblo compared to these people.

              They have this family partIES: Proyecto Carabobo and Proyecto Venezuela. Both “parties” appear in the ballot card. They have been reluctant to cooperate with anyone else. But they have the governor post and thus they are the ones who can distribute the biggest amount of sweeties apart from the national government.

              If we managed to get rid of the Salas-Feo and had some more down-to-earth and pragmatic politician take over, we would really get many more votes.

              Carlez won in 2004 because El Pollo was a pendejo who did not organise the campaign well and much less the counting and because there was a lot of heavy fraud ( the ballots were not counted afterwards, the military came in, surrounded the central centre and took away the ballots and got rid of them, it came out only in the local news)

    4. Thank you for including the drop-outs. For us ignorant foreigners, that is essential to understand even feebly how the race is shaping up.

    5. An apology: I returned to the page and, seeing 2 ‘positives’ on my post, clicked, á la FaceBook, to see who could it be, only to find I had simply added an approval click to my own post(!); sorry about that. We, the technically ungifted, wander through cyberspace wondrously ignorant of the marvels about us, not unlike, one supposes, common folk, riding in modern aeroplanes, quite unapprised of the miracle of it all.

    6. Diego E. Arria
      Queridos amigos, este jueves 3 de noviembre, a las 3:00pm, postularé mi precandidatura ante la Mesa de la Unidad Democrática.
      Like · · Share · 27 minutes ago ·

            • I get that part, but I would think that the money going to MUD is as good or better than it going to most charities considering the dire situation requiring winning the next election. What I mean is, if Arria won’t affect the voting much, then his money should be considered a welcome gift.

            • I think arria’s money actually lower the cost of inscription for the other candidates (because money for inscriptions is directed to the payment for the organization of the presidential candidate primaries).

            • In any event, the guy is running in the hopes of what? Become a king maker with 0.5 percent of the vote?

              I wouln’t think so. Mariaco has much more of a chance of that with her 5%, which may grow to 10% on election day if her hard line followers flock to her.

              This may all be bull if everyone decides to use economy of the vote and go for the front runner.

      • Strange to still hear people call Chavez a dictator.

        Makes me wonder, what is the moral situation of a dictator who is loved by (50%-or-more, the democratic standard, of) his people? Do we even have the right, DID we even have the right to try to get him out?

        Does el pueblo deserve him?

        I know, I know… “This isn’t a productive line of thought.” Fuck it, I don’t feel the need to preach to the choir.

        …so?

        • What is your definition of dictator?
          Is a state where there is no rule of law and where the head of state does as he pleases a democracy just because he won elections?

          Do you think most dictators have popularity rates lower than 50%?
          Can you randomly name 10 famous dictators and tell us what their popularit was a couple of years before their end?

        • Keep in mind that people say they support him when asked by strangers because they fear for their jobs, pensions, missions, etc., etc.

          Polls these days have very little validity.

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