Calvinball, Habilitante Edition

The score is still 12 to G!

Looks like Maduro just used his Enabling Law powers to retroactively grant himself  s’more Enabling Law powers:

El texto definitivo de la ley que se aprobó este martes vino con una sorpresa que no estaba en el proyecto presentado por el mismo Maduro en la Asamblea Nacional. La Habilitante ahora contempla la capacidad del presidente Maduro para “dictar normas que sancionen las acciones que atentan contra la seguridad y defensa de la nación, las instituciones del Estado, los Poderes Públicos y la prestación de los servicios públicos indispensables para el desarrollo y la calidad de vida del pueblo”.

¡Como se goza!

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  1. Not that this is amazingly surprising.

    Those will come later. The Mr. Maduro will next declare that he has stopped time (prices will revert to 2003), brought Chavez back from the dead (they were really keeping him on an island this entire time), declare world peace and harmony under unified socialism (as paid for by the Chinese), doubled oil production (just an accounting mistake, honest! Its really there) and end violent crime in Venezuela through his superpowers of flight, x-ray vision, mind control and his razor sharp adamantium claws (which still won’t bring back my nephew who was murdered in Merida over a shirt on Sunday.)

    Maduro will cap it all off by giving himself the Nobel prize in Economics, Peace and Medicine (the Chavez thing again.)

    He can say whatever he wants. Doesn’t make it actually happen. Just makes him more of a fool when he fails.

  2. Don’t worry: i’m sure there is a circle in hell being prepared just for nick “the rip-offer” ripe(perhaps by iris varela’s soul). Stuff like this gets charged retroactively and his credit card is close to maxed out…

    • No it does not and that’s exactly why they are doing it. I’m an antheist just like most of the people in power down there. You really think they believe in Gods and supernatural beings? They believe in power through strength.

  3. With chavez i sometimes felt i could have used hitler’s bio as a guidebook for what he might do next. And at least he was somewhat “educated”

    With maduro i am afraid stalin’s biography may be appropriate reading. We underestimate him because he’s a bumpkin. Most worrisome recent quote: “you ain’t seen nothing yet”.

    • Stalin? Mugabe seems a better fit (economically, in use of security forces and paramilitary groups, we’ll see about the use of violence in elections)

    • Mugabe, definitely Mugabe. If you study Stalin you would see it was not only the millions Stalin killed. There were other differences, in spite of the moustache.

        • Actually, these comparisons are rather moot unless, perhaps (even so, not sure)
          they are to see if one can learn about some specific process, some trick of previous times.

          Obviously, we won’t have a dictatorship in Latin America as we used to have decades ago.

          What I often ask myself is: how to people from getting used to it? How to prevent people from getting the degree of indifference they have in Cuba?

          • There’s a book I really liked, though it’s though it could have used a lighter prose. It’s called the Servile State, it’s on the public domain and you can download it freely.
            I found the arguments made by the author to be very solid.

            In a nutshell: Property is the vaccine.

            It can be summed up as: the increases in the economic inequality gap in a Capitalist democratic society, lead to increases in popular pressure to turn into a Collectivist democratic society, but the product of these reforms isn’t a Collectivist democratic State, but rather a Servile State.

            Think of a Servile State as one with the Lords deciding how everything should be and the serfs expending their whole life forced work for for the Lords and obeying lest they put their livelihood (or even their lives) in jeopardy. The Lords might be the aristocracy (think US in the eyes of PSFs), the inner party (Cuba, North Korea), etc. At its best it’s a good master-good slave dynamic.

            The author proposes as a hedge against the Servile State, a nation of medium and small owners, who own their houses, have their firms, shops, practices, workshops, land, cattle, etc. They aren’t constantly terrified that if they speak up someone’s gonna fire them and they’ll starve to death, aren’t dependent on the good nature of Big Capital employers, don’t need the State to curb on Big Capital abuses of labor, and don’t need the State subsidies to eat. They have their own dignity, if you will.

          • Nice link to Soto. Though I think more than property rights protection (proper deeds to land/real state, no expropriation, balance in rent laws, etc) we need to put actual property in people’s hands: stock options in public companies (like old SIDOR), deeds of ownership for government built housing, turn buhoneros into small shop owners in Municipal Markets, etc.

            I remember reading about a study in the US, where they compared voting tendencies in some places before and after companies engaged in profit-share schemes or stock options, and it made voters more “conservative” (in US parlance), that is aligning the interests of blue collar workers to those of the business made those districts vote for more business friendly representatives.

          • I agree with that.
            Offering ownership can provide an incentive to become an active participant rather than simply a rent collector. And through stock some of the more powerful benefits of a modern economy can be shared: pricing, rewarding and spreading risk intelligently, aggregating and allocating capital accordingly.

          • The chavista program is to physically destroy the opposition. That is the problem to address in the short run.. Education and institutional reform come later.

          • I would say it’s not a “chavista” progam. HCF is dead. This is a very different program. The power structure is different. The leadership is different. Please call it something else.

          • Some refer to madurismo, but that seems to give too much credit to Maduro, who reached office by ridding Chavez’s coattails. “Chavismo” itself is loose enough a term to allow this usage.

          • Haha citing brainy online books, that has your name written all over it. On the other hand, I have no idea who you’re talking about

          • Familar synopsis: “For eighteen years, Bruce Bueno de Mesquita and Alastair Smith have been part of a team revolutionizing the study of politics by turning conventional wisdom on its head. They start from a single assertion: Leaders do whatever keeps them in power. They don’t care about the “national interest”—or even their subjects—unless they have to.
            This clever and accessible book shows that the difference between tyrants and democrats is just a convenient fiction. Governments do not differ in kind but only in the number of essential supporters, or backs that need scratching. The size of this group determines almost everything about politics: what leaders can get away with, and the quality of life or misery under them. The picture the authors paint is not pretty. But it just may be the truth, which is a good starting point for anyone seeking to improve human governance.”

    • Hitler’s bio? The Rise and Fall of the Third Reich? C’mon, what do you know about Nazi’s? BTW, I did meet a Nazi or two in Ccs. They hid there too. Remember that Hitler invaded Russia stemming his downfall. Hitler was his own worst enemy. You are comparing Hitler to Fidel and Raul Castro. Big difference.

      • There are coincidences in important events in the timelines of the two characters. Perhaps this is not surprising as they were both very ambitious politically, had similar nationalist opinions, and did not hesitate from using force. The analogy is somewhat loose but I still find the coincidinces surprising.

  4. Google translation-
    The final text of the law passed on Tuesday came with a surprise that was not in the draft submitted by the same Maduro in the National Assembly. The Enabling now includes the ability for President Maduro “make rules that punish actions that threaten the security and defense of the nation, state institutions, the public authorities and the provision of essential public services for the development and quality of village life. ”

    Public authorities means Maduro and his cronies only.
    Threaten is enough, actual damage is not needed. Maduro will decide what is threatening.
    Police protection is an essential service. Why doesn’t the government provide it?
    Food is essential. Maduro is guilty of stopping the supply of food.

    The AN could have passed any law he wanted. Maduro is screwed up big time.

  5. Well, this is good news, then. Since the Projecto de Ley Habilitante and the final Bill must be identical unless properly amended, he has no Habilitante powers. They weren’t approved by the National Assembly as required.

    When eventually restitution and prison sentences are being considered, it will be important to remember this.

  6. Let me get this straight….
    “make rules that punish actions that threaten the security and defense of the nation, state institutions, public authorities and providing essential public services for the development and quality of life of the people “.
    Actions such as oohhh, I dunno.. Like maybe running for election against the current government??
    How certain are we there will actually be elections D8?

  7. I’ve been expecting Capriles to be arrested anytime. You know the gov is just dying to do this and if this were Cuba he would have been nabbed long ago. Let’s see in the protest tomorrow is a test case for this law. I sure hope not.

    • Capriles won the April election and Maduro knows it. In fact, all of Venezuela knows it but some are in denial. Moreover, Capriles has more than half the country supporting him. Jailing Capriles will create huge turmoil all over the country and hasten Maduro’s downfall. Capriles was already jailed once by the Chavistas.

      Conditions in Venezuela are bad right now and it ain’t just Capriles who is complaining.

      • What makes you think jailing Capriles would create huge turmoil? The man is not in prison and Maduro is securing dictatorial powers yet nothing is taking place. He is destroying private business and nothing is taking place. If you truly believe that jailing Capriles would be a needed catalyst for Venezuelans to rise against the regime than Capriles is a piss poor leader. The time is now, not after he is jailed!

      • You know, Ronaldo, there are some people who “know” that the moon is made from Green cheese. Just like you “know!” that Capriles “won” the April election. These days it is irrelevant.

        What will not be irrelevant is when Capriles is arrested and charged with culpable hom,icide for the 11 deaths of April 14th and 15th including two children.

        Get prepred as maduro is far harder tan Chavbez ever was.

        Conditions are bad in Venezuela right now? At the momento I do not see many long faces after so many people are buying bargains at thes tores.

        Note that people like you always predict what WIll happen (Maduro0s downfall), or the collapse of thee conomy, or the bankrupcy of PDVSA etc, etc, etc and these things never happen.

        Finalñly and on a saner note which not one of you geniuses has mentioned so far – the TSJ has to approve the text of the laws passed under the Enabling Act and there could be some amendements. If not then look forward to the murderer Capriles and schizo López being arrested after the December 8 elections – which will not be cancelled under any circumstances.

  8. From El Universal: “Addressing the students, the president warned that dissenters are plotting to destabilize the country by calling upon people to gather on Saturday to stop inspections on retailers. “MUD (the Unified Democratic Panel) has said it would burn down the country on Saturday to make me can stop inspections on retailers and the war on the usurer capital.” Maduro also called on students to join price revisions to be held in stores next weekend.

    Additionally, the Venezuelan president seized the opportunity to inform that the first two laws of the enabling law will be signed in Maracaibo, state of Zulia, northwest Venezuela.”

  9. If I’m not mistaken, “rule of law” now has a higher authority, Madruo. Although “rule of law” was being mitigated already, now it is official! So, at this point, Maduro is the law, and anything he does or commands is “lawful”. Anything anyone else does may or may not be “lawful” depending on the whims of Maduro. In PoliSci 101, this is called “Terror Rule”, that those people who act in their own informed self-interests in a time of uncertainty and chaos may find they have broken the law, making them uncertain and feeling vulnerable in what they should or should not do. That feeling is called “terror”, and the only way to free one’s self is through a systematic struggle in large numbers.

    I was reluctant to believe this earlier, because Chavismo was destroying itself and didn’t seem to need any help! Now, I’m thinking that non-violent martyrdom is unavoidable, as armed struggle is clearly futile.

    • I remember a few years ago, Chavez mobilized army units along the Columbian border. President Uribe commented that he wasn’t worried, because Chavez would run out of money after a few days of fighting!

    • Lo que es repulsivo es que en cualquier otro país del mundo la gente quiere progresar, pero en Venezuela prefieren permanecer siendo malandros y vivarachos.

      • Maybe I’ve been reading too many Kennedy conspiracy theories but………Who benefited when Chavez croaked ? Maduro ? No, he’s just the messenger, patsy, pawn whatever.
        And it can only be one person. Correct, the FC himself.
        The race is back on and it’s a race against time. Will Venezuela be signed sealed and delivered ( to Cuba of course, in time for Christmas ?) before the FC disappears towards the embers of hell ? Will he be outmanouevred ? What is certain is that the race is in the final sprint towards the line with the FC on his last legs. And it was all made possible by the removal of Chavez and the complicity of Maburro. Dirty hands held to ransom.
        And Johnson ? He was always someone else’s man. Enter stage right Jack Ruby.

  10. Oh the verguenza of being a Venezuelan abroad. When Chavez used to appear on tv singing and dancing people used to ask my wife where she was from. With her head held low she admitted to being from Venezuela.
    Now we have Maduro with his antiques being reported nationally. Our quaint, friendly neighbours questioning us if he is mad. And then they ask where my wife is from. Colombia ! Yep, definitely Colombia. “Oh how nice” they say. “But it must be awful having the Venezuelans and those Cuban people as your neighbours”.
    We just can’t escape the madness of the permanent state of denial of the Venezuelan.

    • Your wife has nothing to be ashamed of.
      1. As ridiculous as is Maduro et al with his Vice-Ministry of Supreme Social Happiness, sleeping by Chávez’s supposed crypt, etc., I give you Toronto’s mayor, Rob Ford.
      2. As morally bankrupt as are some sectors of the Vzlan population, not all exhibit that behaviour. cf., #23N .

      Your wife needs to plug into what’s really happening so that she needn’t hide her nationality under a burqa.

    We are all victims of a state run program of cultural annihilation and induced hopeless-ness.

    I also feel trapped with shame from time to time, and need to consciously stop on my tracks, and remember my family, my values, mu friends and total strangers all-around who were kind, and open and warm to me! that is the real Venezuela, the one that still has keep the madness somewhat at hand and has not yet fallen to kill each other in the streets with machetes and sticks …

    (Criminal levels may be proving my thesis wrong, but I still use that mental clutch to fight the propaganda induced “shame”)

    Fucking communists I say!

    Venezuela will only survive as a gentilicio if they man up (and woman up indeed) and start burning some cuban flags and any one that shows up to protect them.


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