Fired for putting public Central Bank data on the front page of a business newspaper

Up with this we shall not put…

The crony takeover of Cadena Capriles claims its first big scalp. Omar Lugo has just been fired from his job as Editor of El Mundo Economía y Negocios for the grievous offence of…copying data from the BCV’s website and pasting it onto the front page of his newspaper.

Turns out Venezuela is so much not having a current account problem that BCV international reserves are at a nine year low, having fallen by half since 2009 and by nearly $9 billion this year alone. With a current account surplus like that, who needs deficits?

Oh, and just one thing to add:

Lugo deserves big kudos for doing it right and forcing his unscrupulous new bosses to fire him rather than taking the lame-o way out  by resigning, and getting your bosses off the hook in the process. Forcing them to fire you merely for doing your job is how you make a point in a situation like this: that’s how you underline the journalistic bankruptcy of the cronies that bought up your paper.

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  1. Although not an offense worthy of getting him fired, I did find the headline a bit tacky for a newspaper that touts itself as a business and economics tabloid.

    • It is tacky but even Der Spiegel often has such titles. Admittedly, that magazine is not the elegant Handelsblatt, but they are using a rather normal weapon in the journo arsenal in any normal country (yeah, tacky language).

      I wonder if the government would fire punish someone if he or she simply published a chart with the literacy numbers per state and for the whole country as extracted from the INE site and added the title “And now we go for numeracy” (spoiler: they do not match at all)

      I suppose they would put us in jail “por cínicos, cínicos, cínicos”

      • Jeje. Well, like I said, it’s not a fireable offense, but still, it wasn’t a smart move on his part. Hay que recordar que estos locos están buscando cualquier pelón …

        El Mundo markets itself as a little upscale daily than, say, Últimas Noticias, so the headline seemed out of character to me.

        • I think Francisco has an irrational bias against people whose names start with “Eud”: Eudes, Eudomar, you name ’em. I wouldn’t be surprised if he rejected some scientific discovery announced by an Eudomario or an Eudoris about the source of eternal youth or how to replace the law of demand and supply with the law of consumer’s supreme happiness.

          • Well: I just checked the probability of someone being called EUD-something in Venezuela. They are, after all, much rarer than I thought. It seems there is something about them…just like we can infer an Aponte Aponte is much more likely to be product of heavy inbreeding than someone called Rodríguez Rodríguez or that someone called Lenin is more likely to be Chavista.

      • II would have thought such a headline came from Chinguire Bipolar, but in a “real” newspaper? OMG. Yes, it is a bad headline- but no worse than the article.

    • It is not my mother tongue obviously but I wonder if this is not a sign of a very brave person putting out the proverbial middle finger as a last gesture, so to speak. That kind of tackiness is sometimes what is called for.

      • Analyzing in it in the context of the tackiness that is the norm in Cadena Capriles is almost tasteful IMHO. There is no profanity, sexual innuendo or racism in it. He is just cleverly making an analogy between the current forced “Rebajas” with the BoP situation. Or maybe I’m just tacky.

    • According to your article, “The aim is that with the new rules, those capitals outside the country could return to the stream of the economy, because the Government alone can not continue to finance imports.”

      So, the parallel market, which subsidizes imports, is providing the means to help the government, but the government wants to set the price? Is that what the “Exchange Crimes Act” is all about? It seems that sellers agreeing with buyers on a price is a crime! Chavismo wants to “force” buyers and sellers to sell and buy at a price that it wants domestically and in foreign markets? Is that as crazy as it sounds?

      • This is effectively institutionalized robbery! The robbers are making the laws of the land like when the inmates take over the asylum!

      • I just have to say that people who have capital are going to make rational business decisions based on their self interests. It seems that Chavismo thinks that it’s monopoly of power in Venezuela can force people to make decisions that support Chavismo interests over their own even outside Venezuelan boarders! Does the Regime have some capabilities that I’m not aware of?

  2. Not only rebajas, but the Government has either signed or is about to sign an agreement to swap gold for money with Goldamn Sachs to the tune of US$ 1.8 billion at current prices. So, is rebajas + hipoteca

  3. It was expected. Nicolas Maduro was calling for Omar Lugo’s head days ago by calling for a boycott of El Mundo.

    As we still down know for sure who the new owners are (but Alek Boyd did a great job finding out), the real sign of change will be when journalists start leaving Ultimas Noticias. After all, Eleazar Diaz Rangel is safe and sound in his post and the fact that Desiree Santos Amaral was named as an adviser, means that the “hegemonization” of Cadena Capriles is fully in motion.

  4. These clowns will stop at nothing to buy an election, including sellling gold – the only assets that are not mortgaged to the hilt.

  5. A bit off topic I guess, buy one of the head lines reads: “CADIVI Y SICAD CUBRIRAN EL 77% DE LAS IMPORTACIONES” How is the other 23% covered? It is now a requirement to import that you prove that you obtained your foreign currency via CADIVI or SICAD. Something they were not doing in the past.

    There are a lot of rumors of containers being detoured to other ports.

      • Good Comment . By law Pdvsa and other govt companies and bodies have direct access to govt foreign currency . Announcement (which not credible) must refer only to private imports , The announcement doesnt say anything about the Pdvsa and govt contractors who are owed bundles of money and dont get paid or to the oil industry private joint venture partners and other foreign investors who are never given USD allowing them to repatriate their earnings .

    • Talk about a blast from the past…thx!

      I probably should’ve qualified my forecast a little more carefully (live and learn) – but then oil was selling for $26.28 a barrel in September 2002.

      If the oil boom hadn’t bailed them out, chavismo probably would’ve taken a lot less time to bring us to the hyperinflationary threshold we’re now reaching.

      • No prob quico! 🙂

        I was checking ancient entries on CC as well as on daniel’s

        You guys, the venezuelan politics english blogosphere are the best historians of this period. The reason I wanted to check such old entries is because I was too young back then, I have faint memories of 2002 and I want to know what has been happening with this country ever since.

        Seriously, your blogs should be MANDATORY reading for venezuelan history.

        Quico, Juan, Daniel, Miguel, Gustavo: thank you for saving a piece of venezuelas history. May you live (and blog!) long and prosper V/ /

  6. It looks like Chavismo has locked up the economy! Wasn’t Maduro meeting with private business just a few weeks ago to see how he could support them? Ally one day, then enemy the next? Another tactic right out of the Orwellian playbook!


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