Building the perfect chavista

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Imagine you’re Nicolás Maduro. You’re down in the polls. People are angry about empty shelves. You’re in need of someone new, a new face for spinning the economic crisis … somebody untainted enough to provide a semblance of a fresh start, yet dogmatic enough to please the entrenched interests in the ruling party. If I were Maduro, the recipe I would follow would be to find:

Yesss. Yessss. Take complete ignorance, add a dash or chutzpah, a morsel of groveling, a smidgen of youth, and a grain of psychotic longing for the Eternal Commander, and you get … Andrés Eloy Méndez, Superintendent for Price Controls, the newest, brightest star in chavista economic policy circles.

Something tells me we’ll be hearing a lot more from him.

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1 COMMENT

  1. Incredible how he blatantly says that the UBCh are those doing the audits (2:10). Party and government are the same. Not only that the government finances the party, but it uses its activist structures as workforces. El poder popular, one can infer, are those in the party. No one else.

    • yet, there are people, educated people who ask “if they are so bad why they keep winning elections”, they refuse to notice that the integration of the party and the government is the answer; you can’t beat a party in a free election if it takes control of the state and its institutions. No way Jose

  2. He is the face of the economical radicalization as was foreseen by Luis Vicente Leon as one posible scenario for the Venezuelan future.

  3. Also, remember he denounced Natalia Streignard’s 80 something year old father has an illegal weapon arsenal in his basement to kill Maduro

  4. The notion of inflation and scarcity as being a function of a collective failure of will is sort of a chavista orthodoxy. If only we promoted a “culture” of keeping prices down and shelves full, and employed sufficient functionaries to police the keeping of prices down and shelves full, everything will work out.

    As for the objectors, they are just “control-phobic”. I think it can be said with some certainty that if any generalization can be made about Venezuelan people, it is that they are fully and completely “control-phobic”. For every “control”, there is a more powerful work-around. That is the only thing keeping the place from reverting to a fully-blown fascist state. “Control-phobia” on a national level is not going to be fixed by this guy.

    Another orthodoxy is the notion that Venezuela is in a “transition” to socialism, hence all the problems. But I think normal people have reached the point where they are asking: how is it that in transitioning to a system that is supposedly better, conditions are getting progressively worse?

    Nice suit, nice studio. Without the sound it looks like it makes sense.

    • “For every “control”, there is a more powerful work-around.”
      That’s called “being a vivo”, or as the Chigüire Bipolar said once, “being a cocksucker”.
      It’s a problem of culture, in Venezuela, being a cheating, opportunist and treacherous asshole is celebrated, much more among the poorer people, with many of them that are convinced that there’s no honest way to climb out of that gutter ever, and that they must cheat their way in life.
      And they exalt that antivalue by giving it a cool sounding name and defining it as “being smart” just to feel better with themselves.
      Being a vivo is what ruined Venezuela, and until that way of thinking is completely excecrated from the people’s idiosyncrasy, there’ll be always someone willing to screw everybody else to get a short-term profit.

  5. Parece mentira pero, dejando al margen el honrosísimo trabajo de la gente de El Nacional, un blog gratuito como este es la mejor fuente de información que hay sobre Venezuela en internet. Solo le falta estar en español para ser perfecto. Difícilmente se puede agradecer todo el buen trabajo que hacen ustedes aquí pero al menos hay que decirlo: muchas gracias de verdad. Les sigo en silencio y así seguiré pero al menos quería decir esto. Soy español y me parece verdaderamente fascinante todo lo que está ocurriendo en Venezuela porque desde muchos puntos de vista es exactamente el mundo al revés. Admito que es un placer un tanto morboso (en alemán, schadenfreude) pero lo que realmente deseo y espero es que su país vuelva pronto a un camino que no provoque tantas penalidades.

    un saludo y muchos ánimos desde España

    • He did not get more stupid. He’s the one that feeds them all of this crap, or at least plans the feeding.

      Let me introduce you to Jose Vicente Rángel, former minister of foreign affairs and defense, and vice-president (all under Chávez), and once-upon-a-time cape crusader against corruption (just not his own, or his wife’s, or his son’s) in the long-dead 4th republic.

      • You forgot to mention that mummy is one of the worst “palangristas” ever to exist in Venezuela, who says basically any insanity that he can imagine from the septic tube that’s his program.
        That bastard is like a perico silva with a necktie.

  6. AP journalist twittered this: https://twitter.com/hannahdreier/status/504639243629891584 some hours ago.
    I guess its all bla bla bla. They are lacking the technological capabilities to build such a system. And somehow they know that it would create even more chaos.
    I’ve found the most insane point when the idiot started to talk about that its not about creating a new bureaucracy, but they would assign the job to control and determine the prices to voluntaries without pay. As if a lot of those people wouldn’t look for ways to get some material compensation for their efforts also known as corruption. They are all into words. Good words, bad words (like bureaucracy, force). No serious planing, no action, no monitoring feedback loops. Just “revolutionary” hardtalk, ideological “discussion” and nothing. In the reality they will look for more credits, possibly sell Citgo along the way and watch the ship sinking. If our hardcore left sociologist were in charge, it would be like that. But they will never ever be in charge.

  7. Just read an article in MLnews by Fredric B Mills who seems to see things from the Chavismo perspective:

    http://metrolatinousa.com/2014/08/26/chavistas-debate-economic-institutional-reform-maduro-combats-smuggling-currency-fraud/

    After reading this, there was one important important point that shivered down my spine, that Chavez wanted to do everything necessary to get the revolution to a place that was “irreversible” as the single most important goal. That was to basically was to cripple the private sector. That also meant not worrying about the consequences to the economy, to democracy, or perhaps anything else!

  8. Funny that the main reason given by Maduro to establish the captahuellas rationing is to prevent smuggling to colombia while at the same time mentioning that part of the problem is the employee pilfering that goes on even inside govt supermarkets chains affecting some 50% of all food supplies they get . Evidently the captahuella are not going to do anything to stop the pilfering that goes on before the food stapples reach the supermarket counters.

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