I think Juan is looking for silver lining’s in all the wrong places. The reality is that yesterday’s election shows Maduro as a hands down favorite to win a quickie election following Chávez’s demise: Capriles needs to do 12 points better against Maduro than he did against Chávez, the five point swing he got against another colorless VP is nowhere near enough.
Despair? Not at all. We need to fully grasp that holding power in 2013-2014 is not likely to be good for the political longevity of whomever’s forced to slash
socialism spending. As the inimitable Daniel Pratt puts it in a romp of an essay over on PN,
Por puro schadenfreude estas han sido unas de las elecciones que más he disfrutado. El país se prepara para el gran amanecer macroeconómico que se viene en 2013. Nadie podrá decir que no lo avisaron. Votaron dos veces por el continuismo, así que todos de frente a la pared y con las piernas abiertas.
Folks, just this once, the old Aesopian rationalization is grounded on cold hard realpolitik. 16D presages a Maduro win. The silver lining is that at least our fingerprints are not likely to be on the austerity package that’s arithmetically guaranteed in the next 6-18 months.
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